Margaery

GAME OF THRONES – WHO WILL SURVIVE SEASON 7?

All Men Must Die – this we have learned season upon season in the realms of Westeros. From poor old dead Ned to the deep fried Queen Margaery we have lost some true gems of the seven kingdoms. Of course we have also seen some well deserved gruesome exits – who can blame Sansa for smiling as the hounds turned on their master? And is if it is wrong to cheer when a sadistic king who tortures whores for fun is poisoned at his own wedding, well then I don’t want to be right. The question, now that Season 7 is approaching at dragon speed, is who will survive the the year, and who will die before the credits roll?

Here are my predictions for the survivors and casualties of the upcoming season.

 

MOST LIKELY TO DIE IN TRULY GRUESOME GOT STYLE

1.Cersei

Because once you go full Disney villain you don’t get a happy ending.

2.Grey Worm and/or Missandei

Because it would be oh so Romeo and Juliet, except for, you know, the eunuch problem.

3.Brienne

Because someone we adore is bound to die, and she is just as noble as Eddard – and look how well things turned out there.

4. The Mountain

Clegane Bowl. It’s gotta happen. And we all know who’s gotta win – pass him a chicken. No! Make that two…

5. Littlefinger

Because Sansa is pretty badass now, and he has played her one too many times. Plus he is trying to divide the Starks – and if we have established one thing, its that Jon Snow doesn’t suffer fools. Hear that Olly?!

 

MOST LIKELY TO SURVIVE THE SEASON

1.Jon Snow

Because he can’t die twice. He isn’t Buffy Summers for crying out loud.

2.Daenerys

Because dragons.

3. Tyrion

Because we would riot. Plus I think he will die saving everyone next season *sob*.

4. Jorah

Because Dani told him not to die. And he would rather disembowel himself that disobey her. Plus now that he has greyscale his death would be way too predictable

5. Melisandre

Because the night is dark and full of terrors, and her mysterious story doesn’t even feel half told. She will have a chance to redeem herself in the war to come.

Here end my predictions. Valar Morghulis fellow Thrones fans. We meet again when winter has come – in July.

GAME OF THRONES SEASON 6 EPISODE 7 – THE BROKEN MAN

Curtain up on a pastoral scene, where a show off is carrying an entire tree. Who is this shameless attention seeker? Why it’s the Hound, but we already knew that, because Ian McShane is the worst secret keeper in the history of the seven kingdoms.

in Kings Landing Margaery is mirroring the sparrow’s own moves,and what a man this Sparrow is: “Congress does not require desire on the women’s part.” Charming. Ever the crafty queen, Margaery nails her colours to the mast on a secret scrap of paper, reassuring and saving her beloved Queen of Thorns at the same time. Margaery isn’t going down without a fight. All roses have thorns – the sparrow should remember that.

HBO

HBO

She may be leaving, but Olenna has time for one final round with Cersei on her way out of the door. The matriarch of Westeros puts the blame squarely on the queen mother’s shoulders. Cersei’s franken-shadow undercuts her feigned humility, and Olenna is having none of it: “You’ve lost Cersei, it’s the only joy I could find in all this misery”.

Over at Riverun it is safe to say employing Bronn is the best decision the Kingslayer ever made. Even so, the Blackfish has more strength in his little finger than the entire pathetic siege of Freys. Nothing scares this veteran of horrors – you can’t drown a fish in home waters.

HBO

HBO

And now for the star of the episode: Lyanna Mormont. To quote Shakespeare: “though she be little she is fierce”. Don’t offer her smalltalk, and don’t attempt flattery “Lady Sansa is a Bolton. Or is she a Lannister?” Only the Onion Knight can thaw the steely bear cub. Davos is the sole voice of compassionate reason in a cruel world run mad. Lyanna joins their ranks with her *ahem* 62 men “If they are half as ferocious as their last, the Boltons are doomed” well said sir.

Lord Glover ,on the other hand, has not half of the feisty she-bear’s guts. Driven solely by fear, his honour is lost to prejudice. Sansa is bold, but rather new to negotiation. Although she is new to war I do side with her over Jon on battle strategy. They need more men, else the battle will become a martyrdom. Who else is betting Lady Stark’s candlelit missive is wending its way to a disgraced mockingbird?

HBO

HBO

We then returning to the resuscitated Hound, shortly before the saviour Septon is crushed by his own idealism. The futility of the scene is frustrating for us, but also for Clegane. He can’t bury his head in the sand to the screams; he has seen too much blood to believe blind naivety can wash the guilty clean, or that it can protect the pure from a brutal end. The hound is masterless once more, with yet more hate to fuel his life-force.

A girl doesn’t seem to be hiding back in Bravos. She acts rather more ladylike than the needle-wielder we love, then stands in plain sight ready for the wrinkly fairy tale villain to draw her blade. This is all too simple – either Arya is not wearing her own face, or this assassination is staged.. One thing is certain – a girl is harder to kill than that. Ask Cersei, Sir Meryn or Polliver. Direwolves bite back, and Jaquen may have made her list.

HBO

HBO

Dragons – None.

Direwolves – None. This is confusing.

Nudity – Ah this is more normal. The brothel scene filled the traditional quota.

Violence – Goodbye Sir Septon. I would be sad, if your actor had not been such a blabbermouth.

GAME OF THRONES SEASON 6 EPISODE 6 – BLOOD OF MY BLOOD

Over halfway through the season the pieces are starting to fall into place, but the final picture remains unclear. Characters collide, re-emerge from their hiding places and wage war on their enemies, but the iron throne is still very much in play.

Bran, my least favourite giant killer, obviously hasn’t learned the concept of chivalry, and leaves poor Meera to run for both their lives yet again. No amount of visions will bring Hodor back Bran! Although the glimpse of the mad king amongst the flashbacks is truly spectacular. Then as another Stark death seems imminent a mysterious fire-wielding horseman enters stage left. Perhaps he took the ‘burn them all’ vision a little literally. And the saviour behind the scarves? Long lost Uncle Benjen! Frostbitten, but alive. He’s no Hodor, but a pleasant surprise nontheless.

South of the wall Randyll Tarly is a new candidate for worst father in Westeros. If Tywin wasn’t dead, he’d be jealous. Let Sam eat his bread you racist tyrant! This is by far the best part of the episode. Gilly cleans up nicely – the Seven Kingdoms version of Disney’s Belle, but with a sharper tongue when provoked. “I’m angry that horrible people can treat good people that way and get away with it’ . Welcome to the seven kingdoms Gilly. The unlikely hero’s roasting on home turf left a bitter taste in the mouth, but his change of heart is both unexpected and wonderful, As always Samwell does his heroism by night, where no one can see. Our favourite couple flee with babe and sword in arms – we’ll be seeing more of daddy dearest then.

The curtain rises on the second act of the play with in a play , the satirised propaganda of the seven kingdoms, the Westerosi Mock the Week. Lady Crane makes even Joffrey piteous – a good actress playing a good actress playing a queen- an triumph of a performance. If the real Cersei had been half as charming, Arya would never have fled Kings Landing. Her name today was Mercy, and the wannabe poisoner took it to heart: ‘careful of that one, she wants you dead’. A girl is still a Stark, and a girl retrieves needle once more! Finished with stick fighting and floor washing, our favourite assassin is once more armed and dangerous…. and on Jaquen’s list.

And now for the greatest anticlimax of the episode: Kings Landing. Margaery’s lucious locks remain in tact because there is to be no walk of shame. Jamie’s dramatic horsemanship is undercut by the Sparrow’s checkmate – Tommen the brainless strikes again, pandering to fanatics, and stopping the much hyped battle on the steps of the sept, before it starts. I believe Margaery is playing the long game, and that her gullible husband will be playing a rather shortened version.

For the finale Dany’s favourite baby returns to give the Khaleesi wings, and the dragon queen rides again! Her speech is inspiring and terrifying in equal measure. She riles the troops, but is HBO hinting at a Targaryen tyrant lurking within the breaker of chains? I truly hope not. There is more than one way to kill a favourite character – please Mr Martin, don’t kill mine.

Dragons: Welcome back Drogon

Direwolves: None, since Bran allowed his to DIE

Deaths: None (barring white walkers)

Nudity: None. This is Westeros right?

GAME OF THRONES SEASON 6 EPISODE 4 – BOOK OF THE STRANGER

Brace yourselves people of the seven kingdoms, we may have just born witness to the best episode of all time. I kid ye not, it as if last week’s lackluster effort was simply to blind-sight fans before unveiling a surprise masterpiece.

Two Starks, In the same place. At the same time. Hugging. My emotions cannot take the joy, and surely someone we love will die pretty soon to pay for this brief moment of triumph, but right now I don’t care as JON AND SANSA ARE HUGGING. Plus Tormund and Brienne are my new favourite couple. Of course something had to break the Stark spell, and as usual, that something is Ramsay. Each ‘come and see’ built the horror, particularly when read in Jon’s dispassionate tones. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, and it is Sansa, not Jon, who instigates the plot to wreak vengeance on the bastard of Bolton. Hang out your dire wolf flags – Sansa is taking back her birthright.

Indeed this episode was a smack in the teeth for all those critics who deem Thrones to be misogynistic. While Margaery picks delicate holes in the Sparrow’s highly crafted parable of an autobiography, Loras breaks under the strain. Take the sword away and the knight is dwarfed by his sister’s strength. The Iron islands glimpse of the week told a similar tale – Theon is broken in every way, longing only for home and family, whatever form that takes. His sister provides a chilly welcome until Theon explains he wants her, not himself, to rule. Well, obviously, Yara. He can’t look you in the eye, let alone fight you.

The only downer of the episode is that Tyrion continues to languish in Mereen devoid of all his usual wit. His political reasoning was sound and cunning, but I predict the slavers are a few steps ahead of our favourite dwarf in this game.

Tonight’s episode, though, belonged to Daenerys, the mother of dragons who does not need her children, or her advisers, to rescue her. The Khal’s grotesque threats echoed those of her late brother, a sure sign the Khal had signed his own death warrant. After she (literally) brought the house down, Dany’s cold yet fiery gaze as she emerged naked and goddess-like from the flames was triumphant. Those focusing on her nudity here have missed the point – this moment was not sexual. Hers was a stance of power, not vulnerability. Sorry Katniss, but we have a new girl on fire.

Dragons – None. This Khaleesi can save herself

Direwolves – Ghost remains silently scouting the wall with Jon. I didn’t see him, but I know he’s there, which makes me happy.

Deaths – Oh Osha. That wasn’t much of a Thrones return for you was it?

Nudity – The new Dothraki Goddess. Bow down muggles.

SAMWELL TARLY’S TOP FIVE GAME OF THRONES MOMENTS

The Ravens from Westeros tell me it is only SIX DAYS until we see whitewalkers and dragons realm the world! To celebrate, today’s countdown features the famed wielder of dragonglass and saviour of wildling waifs – Samwell Tarly.

SAM’S STORY

The backstory of the most unlikely soldier.

SLAYER

Desperate times turn a coward into a hero

HEAD SHOT

Ready, aim, THENN!

GILLY

The end may be cringey, but his chivalry is flawless.

ELECTION NIGHT

The best political campaigner in Westeros. GO SAM!!!!

View Daenerys’ top 5 moments here

View the Hound’s top 5 moments here

View Sansa’s top 5 moments here

View Jamie’s top 5 moments here

View Margaery’s top 5 moments here

View Cersei’s top 5 moments here

View Tywin’s top 5 moments here

View Catelyn Stark’s top 5 moments here

View Jorah’s top 5 moments here

TYWIN’S TOP FIVE GAME OF THRONES MOMENTS

With 9 days to go I am featuring my first (but not my last) dearly departed character. Well, maybe not dearly. Dastardly would be closer to the mark. Yes, it’s Tywin Lannister, once the puppet-master behind the iron throne, latterly found dead and holey on his toilet. How the mighty have fallen doesn’t quite cut it.

1. Flesh and Blood

Unflinching, and unafraid of getting his hands dirty – although not a friend to the animals.

2. Making an Entrance

Better late than never, eh Cersei?

3. The King’s Bedtime

Even sadists have grandparents

4. Legacy

The meaning of life, according to Tywin. Spoiler -It’s not love and happiness.

5. Bad Blood

Just in case you were starting to like him, the lion bears his bigoted claws.

View Daernery’s top 5 moments here

View the Hound’s top 5 moments here

View Sansa’s top 5 moments here

View Jamie’s top 5 moments here

View Margaery’s top 5 moments here

View Cersei’s top 5 moments here

MARGAERY’S TOP FIVE GAME OF THRONES MOMENTS

The fifth in my series of character countdowns (11 days to go as the ravens flies) focuses on the regal rose herself – Margaery Tyrell. The pretty power player who plays the game with sugar and spice, leaving a sour taste in Cersei’s mouth. The seven kingdoms underestimate her at their peril.

1. THE QUEEN

Margaery sets out her mission to Littlefinger, one manipulator to another.

2. DEFENCE STRATEGY

Margaery wraps a sadist round her little finger

3. QUEEN OF HEARTS

She got the people cheering Joffrey? SORCERY!

4. THIRD TIME LUCKY

Child courtship… and cats

5. MOTHER

Spite with a smile – the moment the rose seals her eventual fate?

View Sansa’s top 5 moments here

View the Hound’s top 5 moments here

View Cersei’s top 5 moments here

View Daenerys’ top 5 moments here

 

 

 

GAME OF THRONES – SEASON 5 EPISODE 6 – UNBOWED UNBENT UNBROKEN

In a land far away, in a kingdom divided, Arya Stark is performing her Dark Cinderella routine; washing dead bodies morning, noon and night. Then learning the black and white script, she eases the death of another, and looks behind the locked door. The faces of the faceless men are revealed, hallowed halls stacked high with masks made of flesh. Creepy, yet captivating.The whole interlude plays out in eerie shadows, a beautiful, intimate blue toned oil painting.

The Imp & Exile road trip continues- ‘Do you ever shut up?’ Oh Jorah, you have a lot to learn. Ian Glenn’s silent grief on learning of his father’s fate pierces the soul. Then upon the abduction of the abductor and his trusty dwarf, the best line in Game of Thrones history is uttered: ‘The dwarf lives until we find a cock merchant’. Did these merchants undertake vocation specific training? If so what? The Westerosi can of worms is officially open.

Across the Narrow Sea we return to Dorne, but the good Dorne, Sand Snake free. Prince Doran and Areo are the still waters that run deep- more screen time on them and less on the B movie girl ninjas wannabes please.…
I spoke too soon, the ninjas are back, looking decidedly un-stealthy in their cute matching outfits. Surely the focus should be on fatalities and NOT on fashion? The she-reptiles even fight half-heartedly, all flourish but no flair. Areo Hotah puts an end to the melodramatic display, with curt yet respectful put downs and a rather impressive axe.

Enter stage right Diana Rigg, who inevitably steals every scene she graces. Her face-off with ‘the famous tart Queen Cersei’ is particularly enjoyable. Cersei might be winning currently, but she has angered the wrong rose…who curtly points out the difference between the Queen of Tarts and her late daddy dearest- HE knew that you keep your friends close, but your strategical allies closer.

And so ‘The Trial’. The sparrow teases the players in their finery, trapping them with words and watching them squawk. Margaery begs and commands in turn, yet is carried off regardless. Yet is she out of the lionesses’ den for good?….Cersei beware, there’s still a thorn in your paw, and it answers to Olenna.

The Myranda/Sansa bath scene is wound tighter than the Iron Bank. Miss Stark sees through the vicious veil and unsheathes claws learnt at the lioness’s court. ‘I am Sansa Stark of Winterfell. This is my home, and you can’t frighten me’- I want that to be true so much it hurts. Her public bravado gives me hope- can the wolf princess outlast the villains? She looks beautiful yet deathly in wedding gown- the death of innocence, but please not of hope? A victorious villain, a frightened girl, a scene harder to watch than the infamous red wedding. There had better be more in this than a Reek redemption HBO, hell hath no fury like a scorned stark….