“A man with no motive is a man no one suspects.”
Well, that didn’t take long, did it? As I mentioned last week, the identity of the killer (or killers) of King Joffrey, in the novels, took several volumes to ascertain for sure. In part, I think that’s because George RR Martin cast it as a fairly slight part of the plot; everyone wanted Joffrey dead, and everyone’s better off with him that way. Does it matter that much who actually did it – as long as it wasn’t Tyrion?
Continue reading “Game of Thrones: Season 4, Episode 4–Oathkeeper”
“Sometimes I think maybe I died, and I’m in, I don’t know if it’s Heaven or Hell or Limbo, but I don’t seem to exist. No one feels my existence.”
This week, Mad Men took one of its occasional turns towards ironic humour, in an episode full of people telling each other transparently unconvincing lies which crumbled to the touch. Jonathan Igla and Matthew Weiner’s script was so full of comical misunderstandings that, had it been made in Britain in the 70s, it would have made a pretty good Whitehall farce. But this is Mad Men, and the humour on display was black in tone and undercut by the show’s usual bleak nihilism.
Continue reading “Mad Men: Season 7, Episode 2–A Day’s Work”
“A wise king knows what he knows and what he doesn’t.”
After original author George RR Martin’s stint on scripting duties last week, it was back to showrunners Benioff and Weiss to follow up that episode’s tumultuous events. Understandably, that meant the majority of this week’s episode was centred on King’s Landing, as various interested parties took on the roles of amateur detectives – their quest for the truth, as ever, taking second place to the quest for power. Or, in Tyrion’s case, self-preservation.
Continue reading “Game of Thrones: Season 4, Episode 3–Breaker of Chains”
“There’s someone above you, and someone below you, and everyone’s buying everyone dinner.”
It’s a long overdue welcome back for the ladies and gentlemen (mostly gentlemen) of Sterling Cooper & Partners, in the first half of the final season of Mad Men. Yes, while Matthew Weiner’s acclaimed drama may have one more episode than usual for this seventh, conclusive outing, the fourteen episodes are going to be split into two ‘half-seasons’, the first broadcast this April, the last next April. If you thought the ‘mid-season break’ was annoying in shows like Doctor Who or The Walking Dead, at least you don’t usually have to wait an entire year…
Continue reading “Mad Men: Season 7, Episode 1–Time Zones”
“There’s been too much amusement here today. A royal wedding is not a place for amusement.”
Ah, weddings. I must say, personally I have rather a dread of them. I’ve never encountered one that hasn’t been an awkward occasion, as you gingerly tread the minefield of half-understood family politics and longstanding grudges. Inevitably (in my experience), at least some part of it ends in tears, as Aunt Maisie, tipsy on complimentary cava, finally confronts Cousin Jane over the long-disputed inheritance of that cherished family heirloom, followed by the equally inevitable punch-up between their dutifully defensive and equally tipsy husbands.
Continue reading “Game of Thrones: Season 4, Episode 2–The Lion and the Rose”
“The war is over. The King is safe.”
If you thought Game of Thrones was getting popular last year, this year it’s a veritable cultural phenomenon. As the new season dawned, the papers were full of clickbait drawing fans in with the most tangential connections. There’s a certain amount of inevitability in pieces discussing the show’s representation of gender imbalance in its pseudo-historical setting, or instructions on how to make yourself look like Westeros’ most popular female characters. But what are we to make of it when former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard starts discussing how the show reminds her of her time in office? As if to prove how massive the show is, it actually broke HBO’s streaming service HBO Go with overwhelming demand for this fourth season premiere.
Continue reading “Game of Thrones: Season 4, Episode 1 – Two Swords”