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  #476  
Old 05-06-2019, 10:00 PM
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  #477  
Old 05-07-2019, 04:25 AM
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  #478  
Old 05-07-2019, 05:27 PM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

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  #479  
Old 05-07-2019, 06:42 PM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

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She named the dragon Drogon, after Khal Drogo. Dracarys (sp?) is the Valerian word for "fire", and it's the command she gives her dragons to burn shit up!

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  #480  
Old 05-08-2019, 12:03 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

Drogon, named after Khal Drogo. Rhaegal named after her uncle Rhaegar Targaryen. Viserion named after her brother Viserys Targaryen.
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  #481  
Old 05-08-2019, 08:55 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

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Drogon, named after Khal Drogo. Rhaegal named after her uncle Rhaegar Targaryen. Viserion named after her brother Viserys Targaryen.
Rhaegar was also her brother. :glasses:
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  #482  
Old 05-08-2019, 11:11 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

SO'S YOUR FACE.

For no good reason I must have misrememberead the wiki when I looked at it when I posted.
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  #483  
Old 05-14-2019, 12:49 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

Well. That was quite something.

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  #484  
Old 05-14-2019, 07:15 AM
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I have seen some absolute hissyfits on the net on the past 24 hours or so, so let me hastily get this in there before everyone gives actual good arguments to counter my own shitty ones and I could back away gracefully.

This is going to be a long one, and the spoiler tag is not JUST because of spoilers, but also because I care about the page looking like shit after I dump my own hissyfit on it.



Fuck it, I need some tea. They say tea is soothing.
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  #485  
Old 05-14-2019, 07:33 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

As a general note, it is highly likely that the main outline of the ending was given to Benioff and Weiss by GRRM. So if you have a problem with the outcome in the broad sense (who sits on the Iron Throne and such), that's probably what GRRM intended. I have had issues with seasons 7 and 8, but it's more about how they arrived at the outcomes they've reached.

Last night's episode...


As for what I think the series finale will hold/what I want to happen...

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  #486  
Old 05-15-2019, 12:32 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

Concerning ep4:

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  #487  
Old 05-15-2019, 12:33 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

And ep5:

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  #488  
Old 05-15-2019, 12:52 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

And as for ep6, my predictions:

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  #489  
Old 05-21-2019, 01:00 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

Well, damn.



I'm not going to blather on about what I thought was done right or wrong; the entire rest of the Internet has that more than covered. I'll just say that, other than some relatively minor quibbles, I think the ending was handled pretty well. Relative to the pixels I've seen so far, I seem to have a higher than average opinion of it. Stupid Internet.
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  #490  
Old 05-21-2019, 02:14 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

Not gonna use spoiler tags here, because every message in this thread is 90% spoiler tags now, and it’s getting annoying. If you care about not getting spoiled, why are you still reading this thread anyway?

(I already posted most of this on Balloon Juice BTW, but I’ll reuse it here.)

With the caveat that I haven’t actually seen the last two seasons due to currently lacking an HBO subscription, and have instead simply been keeping up with the story via recaps, I nonetheless feel fairly confident in saying that the series has suffered from what I am going to term X-Men: The Last Stand Syndrome. The problem is that the production’s dominant narrative voice has changed midstream from one that was heavily focused on character development to one that was… not.

Unlike The Last Stand, Game of Thrones hasn’t actually undergone any changes in personnel; instead, the problem came from the fact that the first six seasons were effectively coasting on Martin’s books, and once they got in front of the source material, the character development dried up. (To be clear, there are only five books right now, but I’m including season six in the “based on Martin’s source material” category because The Winds of Winter is evidently already partially written. It remains to be seen whether Martin will ever complete it, but I’m fairly certain that Benioff & Weiss had a lot more in the way of source material to draw from when they were producing season six than they have had for the last two seasons.)

Benioff & Weiss seem to have viewed the characters as pieces on a chessboard to be moved around at will, not as living, breathing human beings. And that seems to have resulted in a… less than ideal ending.

There was a good Twitter thread I saw awhile back that divided writers into “pantsers” versus “plotters”. Martin himself uses the terminology of “gardeners” versus “architects”, which is what I’m going to use for the rest of this message.

Gardeners are writers who develop characters, throw them into situations, and see how those situations develop organically, based on what the characters would do. They may have a destination in mind, as Martin seems to have had, but the journey to that destination is not set in stone. Martin is, by his own admission, a gardener. This approach typically results in very richly detailed and realistic characters, but the plot can suffer. And as we have seen in Martin’s case, this can result in massive delays if the characters aren’t behaving the way the writer expects them to.

Architects, by contrast, have to have everything set in stone, if you will, before they begin writing. This isn’t necessarily an inferior storytelling technique; it means that the plot will be very skilfully constructed, but characterisation can suffer. The characters have a preordained set of actions that they have to undertake, and if writers don’t devote enough time to character development, their characters can feel as though they’re simply running through preordained actions mandated by a plot outline rather than living, breathing people.

This sounds like I’m bashing architects in comparison to gardeners, and I’m really not. The gardener approach can not merely lead to infamous delays like Martin’s, but it can also result in terrible endings. Hardly anyone likes most of Stephen King’s endings; almost everyone agrees that he has great characters and that his settings are superb, but it’s almost universally agreed that the man can’t write a good ending to save his life. This is no doubt a result of his seat-of-the-pants approach to writing; he doesn’t begin with endings in mind, by his own admission.

My own philosophy is that you need a balanced combination of the two approaches to have a great story: you need an idea of where the plot is going, but you also need believable characters, which means that you can’t treat your outline as a rigid set of boxes that have to be ticked off. To mix the gardening and architect metaphors, if a plant grows in a manner that threatens the foundation, then rather than cutting off the branches of the plant, you rebuild the foundation in a way that accommodates the plant. The plant is… well, OK, it’s not a plant, actually. It’s a person. People are more important than buildings. You can rebuild a building. A person’s life is irreplaceable.

You have to have a coherent plot. But your plot can’t come at the expense of your characters; if your audience doesn’t believe your characters’ actions, then you’ve failed as a storyteller. By telling a fictional story with dragons and priests that raise the dead, you’re asking your viewers to suspend their disbelief. When you break that suspension of disbelief, you’ve disserviced your audience.

Essentially, Game of Thrones switched from the gardening approach to storytelling over the first six seasons to the architect approach over the last two. And this is a failure on Benioff & Weiss’ part in stripping their characters of their development – and thus their moral agency.

Daenerys seems to have been the most notable failure on their part. Her descent into madness is heavily foreshadowed in the books, where she is much more impulsive and arrogant; although some of this comes across in the show, many of her flaws are whitewashed, and thus the writers failed to sell her ultimate heel turn. This is demonstrative of their mistake in declining HBO’s offer to extend the show. They ultimately violated one of the principal rules of storytelling: “Show, don’t tell”.

By ultimately relying on Peter Dinklage’s performance to explain away Daenerys’ villainous turn, they’ve deprived the audience of actually seeing her character arc develop. I suspect they expected this to be some sort of shocking last-minute twist, but it’s unsatisfying. It’s like having the main character in a romance end up with a cardboard cutout introduced in the last five minutes (I have repeatedly criticised La La Land for this), or having the murderer in a murder mystery be introduced in the last scene. You don’t do it if you want to satisfy your audience.

The impression I’m getting from the summaries I’ve read is that a lot of the story elements are individually satisfying, but the characterisation isn’t there. The story they crammed into the final thirteen episodes really needed two full seasons to tell, maybe even three. It seems like Benioff & Weiss just wanted to rush onto their Star Wars, project rather than putting the time and effort into ending Game of Thrones properly.

I can understand, to some extent, getting sick of a project after spending ten years on it, but maybe they should’ve just handed the reins to someone else who wanted to see it stick the landing properly. There are plenty of talented storytellers in Hollywood and elsewhere; B&W could’ve stayed on as executive producers or something, while letting someone else fill in the characterisation details that they pretty clearly no longer cared about.

I think the book ending will be great, though, if Martin ever finishes it. I’ve seen the suggestion that he might’ve been biding his time on the last couple of books to see if the show gave him ideas to finish them. If nothing else, he now has a good guide to what not to do, based on some of the reactions on the Internet. He’ll know, for instance, that a lot more work needs to be put into Daenerys’ character arc than the show provided. Hopefully he’ll get his arse in gear and finish the damn thing now. I started out reading this story and, as great as the TV show has been in parts, I want to finish it that way.

All of these criticisms are mostly with the final two seasons as a whole, though. The last episode proper seems like it was… fine. Not amazing, but… fine.

Again, though, all of this has the massive caveat that I’m relying on plot summaries. Game of Thrones is a TV show, and I’m sure actually seeing it is a different experience than reading about it. But still, it seems like it could’ve been more if the ending hadn’t been rushed.
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  #491  
Old 05-21-2019, 08:27 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

I had little emotional reaction to the finale. I had some amount of hope they would salvage something, but it just wasn't that great and was mostly a kind of boring episode. Although it wasn't as bad as it could have been - Jon wasn't crowned king and everything ends hunky-dory, and they at least gesture at political reform, but not in a way that would really make a difference.

There was still room for some twists and turns and there were still some ridiculous bits. Daenerys took a murderous turn - either because everyone betrayed her and she went crazy and they love Jon more than her... or because she recognized with Jon as the heir with a stronger claim, she needs to demonstrate that resistance is futile and that backing another monarch will only lead to your doom. Either way... wouldn't it have made more sense for her to murder Jon, as either the final potential impediment to her rule... or as another betrayer who comes in yelling about how awful she is?

I had thought that maybe she'd kill Jon, and then perhaps Arya would kill her, using another's face to cover her tracks. The rest of it could've turned out pretty much the same.

Or they might have elucidated more of why Bran, who apparently could predict that he would be named king, spent the past two seasons doing nothing useful except telling people that Littlefinger was a backstabbing schemer... and perhaps less usefully, given that it was the first in a chain of dominoes leading to the massacre at King's Landing, that perhaps the Three-Eyed Raven of all people might see coming, that Jon was the true heir to the Iron Throne... why did Bran not give any more useful information to people? Hell, if they'd revealed as a twist that Bran, as he kept saying, wasn't Bran, but as now the Three-Eyed Raven, he viewed his self-preservation (the preservation of the memories of humankind) as more important than all of that and purposely arranged things to result in himself being named king - or something like that. A twist ending, sure, but more interesting than what they gave us.

Anyway...

Jon - should've died, but north of the wall is ok
Daenerys - continued to be poorly written, but I accepted that the most likely end for her was dead
Sansa - the best ending, although it's a bit pat that she was able to secede so easily. Seems like it would ensure that the Iron Islands and Dorne end up seceding as well.
Arya - it's fine I guess, but it's dumb that she spent multiple seasons learning how to be a faceless assassin and then only used her ability to change faces to kill the Freys, something that was satisfying to watch but evidently of little relevance to the story
Bran - Three-Eyed Raven should've done something more with his power, but I will say I wasn't expecting him to be king
Brienne - so her last major scenes are crying in a robe that her man is abandoning her to return to his psycho ex, and then writing a glowing Wikipedia entry about him? ummmm
the Dothraki - where did they go? First they all died in Ep 3, then they came back, then they disappeared again
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  #492  
Old 05-21-2019, 09:33 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

There were perhaps 1000 dothraki in that disastrous vanguard in episode 3, not the entire 10 000 -20 000 or so she brought to Westeros.
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  #493  
Old 05-21-2019, 07:02 PM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

All I can say is that I was satisfied with the ending. Probably because I had lowered my expectations in light of how the show-runners had handled the past two seasons.
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  #494  
Old 05-21-2019, 10:23 PM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

Jon petting Ghost. Nothing else matters.
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  #495  
Old 05-21-2019, 10:38 PM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

Quote:
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Not gonna use spoiler tags here
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  #496  
Old 05-21-2019, 10:41 PM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

Drogon's thought process, version 1:


Drogon's thought process, version 2:
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  #497  
Old 05-21-2019, 10:44 PM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

On the nature of the last 2 seasons:

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  #498  
Old 05-21-2019, 10:45 PM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

Some of y'all may be interested in reading some opinions. Or not.

'I feel empty now': you review the Game of Thrones finale | Television & radio | The Guardian

(Some of the opinions listed are thoroughly misguided and objectively wrong, but others aren't so bad.)
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  #499  
Old 05-22-2019, 07:49 AM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

Am I the only one who thought they got as big a leap towards democracy that that medieval world could handle at that moment? Seems at least as important a change as the Magna Carta. Sure, it can all change back with one determined charismatic tyrant, but it seems that is still the case in our world.
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Old 05-22-2019, 07:41 PM
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Default Re: Winter is Coming

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