“Everybody dies, sooner or later. Don’t worry about your death, worry about your life.”
With Game of Thrones off the air for a week between episodes for the first time, my first thought was of the recent internet furores regarding the show’s sometimes gratuitous use of sex and violence. I had wondered whether, in light of the controversy, the broadcast of episode 8 had been delayed to allow for some hasty re-editing to ‘sanitise’ the show. As to the sex, that might be true, but as the ep amply demonstrated, it certainly wasn’t true for the violence (of which more later).
Continue reading “Game of Thrones: Season 4, Episode 8–The Mountain and the Viper”
“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 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”