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July 22, 2014

'Game of Thrones' Season 1, Episode 9 Recap

by Maureen Ryan, posted Jun 13th 2011 1:30AM
['Game of Thrones' - 'Baelor']

After watching the fourth episode of 'Game of Thrones,' I won't lie to you, I was feeling downcast. As I indicated in my reviews of episodes 2, 3 and 4, and as I indicated in my overall review of the first six episodes, I saw problems in this adaptation, despite a strong cast, frequently handsome settings and excellent source material.

Here's where things stand now: Episodes 5 through 9 have gained in strength week to week; each hour has been better than the last. It may not surprise you to learn that the ending of 'Baelor' left tears in my eyes.


There's one big question that faced this TV series from the start: Why make it? Sure, it was always an exciting idea, but we have a series of books -- George R.R. Martin's 'Song of Ice and Fire' epic, which begins with 'A Game of Thrones' -- that puts us deeply inside the psychological, political and moral dilemmas of a host of well-drawn characters. Martin's novels do many things well -- we know that. Could the TV show do those things as well? Or even better?

Around the middle of the season, the show began to do things more or less as well as the books had done them. But by this point, we've seen several instances of the show asserting its right to exist by doing some things even more effectively than the novel did. By shaping the material more aggressively in thematic, visual and character-driven ways, these final hours of the season have made the story come alive in the ways that I'd hoped it would. It's not that the show is better than the books, it's that, by now, this version of 'Game of Thrones' is able to more consistently take advantage of what a visual, live-action medium can do. It's given us ways into this world that are different, but no less powerful.



The scene in which Ned dies is wrenching in the book, of course. But there are things that a visually-based medium can do that a novel cannot. I can't praise director Alan Taylor's work on this episode enough. With economy and compassion, he brought us inside the experiences that Ned and Arya had in that terrible place. Sound was used exceptionally well in that final scene (which also contained an echo of the very first scene -- you may recall that the first thing we heard in 'Baelor' was Ned breathing in the dank dungeon).

After Joffrey's capricious decision, the square in front of the Sept of Baelor erupted into chaos -- there was screaming and shouting and even seasoned courtiers were shocked into action. Cersei, not a woman who's easily surprised, tried to rein her son; Varys sprang into action and tried to get to the platform; Ser Ilyn Payne readied his sword and Sansa, not surprisingly, became hysterical.

We got just enough of that chaos, and then suddenly it all fell away. A hush came over the scene as we came back to Ned, who had realized this was it. There wasn't going to be a reprieve. What's it like to realize you're about to die? I hope none of us go through that experience any time soon, but Taylor's direction (working from a sensitive, thoughtful script from executive producers D.B. Weiss and David Benioff) helped us understand what Ned cared about in that moment. He'd accepted his fate with simple courage, but he couldn't bear that Sansa was only a few feet away. At least he could see that Arya probably wasn't watching anymore. He had that small comfort, if you could call it that.

There was that shot of the back of his neck -- bare, vulnerable. Ned may have had some flaws, but he was a good man, and here was his neck, about to be sliced in two. In that brief shot of Ned's vulnerable hunched, beaten body, it was easy to identify with him. Who among us is stronger than this man, who may have been misguided but tried to do his best by his family and his king? Confessing was the one choice he had left, but even that practical decision didn't save him. Tragic is the only word for the whole situation.

It's one thing to read about a little girl who is present when her father is beheaded, but to see those moments performed by Maisie Williams brought so much poignance to the episode's final seconds. It wasn't just that her father was murdered a few feet away from her -- that was the worst thing, by far -- but we also saw on her face her incomprehension at his "confession." She not only lost her father, she had her illusions about honor and truth ripped away in the most painful way possible. She lost her dad, and her idea of who he was, all in a public spectacle that couldn't have been more bloodthirsty and heartless.

We heard Ned breathing right before he died, then we heard Arya breathing as she watched birds overhead. A few minutes earlier, she'd been catching pigeons to augment or trade for her supper. Who could believe how much worse things would get?

Yet to focus on breathing was apt. This is a story about people who have to go on. They don't have a choice. Ned died, he's taken his last breath, but his daughter is still breathing. That's something. And now, as other characters have and will in this story, she needs to figure out how to survive the unimaginable.

That final scene -- and others that have come close to that masterful moment -- gave me what I wanted from HBO's 'Game of Thrones.' It gave me a reason to recommend the TV show and not just put the book into the hands of friends.

Well before I saw a frame of this show, I wanted HBO's 'GoT' to get me that invested, once again, in the heartbreak and resilience of one young girl. So much of this story is about how the decisions of the powerful trickle down to the least powerful, and in Arya, Martin distilled so much of what matters to him as a writer. We are following a game of royal intrigue, but this tale never loses sight of the pawns, who have desires, emotions and schemes of their own. They aren't merely pieces to be moved around a board. They matter, as citizens and human beings. And though I never tired of Arya in Martin's books, I simply can't wait to spend more time with Williams' version of the character.

So why is the TV show working so well in general now? I have a few theories about that. First of all, as Martin's tale gains steam, there's a sense of propulsive momentum to the story on several fronts, and HBO's 'GoT' has done a fine job of balancing those various threads of late. The direction has gotten better as the series has progressed (nothing against Tim Van Patten, who directed the first two episodes, but the scripts often lacked grace, depth and energy early in the season), and Minahan and Taylor have shown particular finesse with this material.

The cast has been good from the start, and as we spend more time with the characters, we're bound to get more interested in their plights. But I think the biggest reason that the last few hours have worked particularly well is because 'GoT' has gotten better at shaping each hour of television into something that works on its own and as part of a larger whole.

Last week was something of a meditation on the quality of mercy, and this week we got characters coming face to face with the consequences of their actions. Masks fell, charades were dropped, truths were faced and real decisions had to be made, and, as Maester Aemon said, people had to make choices that they'd have to live with for a long time. Cards on the table time, if you will.

But if there's one question that animates Martin's novels and keeps them both morally and emotionally interesting, it's this: How do you decide what the right thing to do is? There's no hard and fast rule about what's right in any given situation, and that ambiguity and doubt are among the things that make this allegedly rule-bound world fascinating (and, of course, extremely similar to our own).

We hear characters talk about honor all the time, but what is it, really? Is that protecting the realm? Protecting one's family? Protecting oneself? You can't always do all of those things, as Aemon points out to Jon. Sometimes you have to pick a side, and in doing so, you may break promises you made to others or to yourself. (Take, for example, Jaime's choice to kill the Mad King: He did take a vow to protect him, but at what cost to the realm and its inhabitants? Yet as Aemon has had to live with his choices, Jaime has to live with the knowledge of what he did and how would be perceived.)

Characters in this story are constantly having to make choices on the fly, and they are rarely sure that what they're doing is the right thing. There are few certainties, and as I wrote in last week's review, both "good" and "bad" decisions frequently play out in ways nobody quite expected. Personal will matters, choices matter, but Fate can be fickle, and watching all those factors interact via characters we care about makes for addictive storytelling.

And unpredictable storytelling. We may think we're seeing a world with a steady order and a firm hierarchy, but Martin -- and Benioff and Weiss -- keep asking us to look closer. The truth is, everything is in flux. Nobody's quite sure what the honorable thing to do is, they're not sure what their vows are worth and who's going to enforce the rules. Even characters who are usually sure of themselves can't control the events they set in motion. Ned, who'd stuck so long to a particular moral code, finally made the practical, expedient choice and confessed in order to save his daughters. But that didn't save him.

Many characters in this episode found themselves in unexpected and sometimes uncomfortable places: By bribing his way out of a problem, Tyrion Lannister landed himself in middle management, trying to control unruly underlings and survive a war with not just the enemy but with his father. By putting her son on the throne, Cersei thought she'd secured the kingdom for her family and that war could be avoided, but Joffrey, whom she'd raised to be a spoiled ingrate, threw a wrench into that plan. Being married to the Khal meant that she was protected, or so Daenerys thought, but nobody is protected in this world, from the consequences of their own choices or those of others.

Watching consequences collide and play out in realistic and yet unexpected ways -- and that kind of thing happened frequently in this hour -- is one of the best things about Martin's tale, and now the TV show is depicting those kinds of situations in ways that are visually and emotionally compelling. Far from thinking the TV show may have been a misfire -- and that thought crossed my mind while I watched some early episodes -- I'm truly glad that HBO backed this series and that Benioff and Weiss made it. There are still moments where I want more time with these people -- a lot more time -- but that's a testament to the world that the TV show has created. It'd be easy to immerse myself even further into the this representation of Westeros and its inhabitants. There's no doubt that this show would be even better if each season was 12 or 13 episodes long, but I'm willing to take what I can get.

OK, before I make you gag with all this praise, how about a quibble? No battles yet? Not one? Now, I am glad we got to spend a lot of time with the characters: The introduction of Shae was excellent, as was Tyrion's Tysha monologue; I grow more impressed every week with Richard Madden's performance as Robb; I'm on record as thinking Emilia Clarke can do no wrong, and she was again terrific this week. I could go on, but you get the idea.

But let's be clear, part of the appeal of Martin's stories is that we get cool battles. Now, a lot of 'GoT' is concerned with peeling back layers of myth and legend and showing what life was truly like in a feudal society -- lords can be greedy pervs, kings can be spoiled murderers, aristocratic ladies can be spiteful and cruel, etc. So it follows that sometimes, being part of an army means being knocked on your butt early (by your own men, no less) and waking up when all the fighting is over. Intellectually, I get that, and yet I find myself a little disappointed that many of the major characters are caught up in a war and we're not seeing it.

Come on, HBO, step up and spend the gold. Character drama and grand vistas are swell, but come on. Once in a while, we want to see knights busting heads in a full-on battle. It didn't have to be this episode, which clearly was concerned with doing justice to some major moments in the book, but it has to happen.

I know that the battle that took place in this episode was mainly a cover to grab Jaime, but at some point, it's not true to 'A Song of Ice and Fire' to shy away from scenes of war. Again, I know that the show only has 10 hours this season (and apparently 10 hours next season). But that limitation is a problem at times. Sometimes it doesn't allow the show to add richness and depth to the characters or nuance to certain situations, and if it also means we don't get depictions of battle in a war story, that could be a problem.

What transpired before the battle was, however, quite satisfying. Tyrion, the family's outcast, has actually been given something to do for once, and he finds his new role as leader of the hill tribes acutely uncomfortable. His father has expectations for Tyrion and his men, but the men themselves aren't exactly disciplined and Tyrion's management problems don't interest his father at all.

Tyrion, like many of the characters in this story, had found a way of dealing with the world that had worked for him -- he kept everyone at arm's length with his wit and intelligence -- but now, like other characters, he's finding that the old ways of doing things is not working. Upending the traditional ways and shaking up the old hierarchies carries tantalizing possibilities for a whole host of characters, from Shagga to Dany to Cersei, but all these changes come with unpredictable responsibilities and consequences. For Tyrion, being taken seriously by dear old Dad is the last thing he expected.

Not that you can blame the guy. Tyrion's telling of the tale of Tysha is of a piece with Varys coming clean to Ned, Joffrey showing his true colors, Dany deciding to stay with Drogo. People dropped whatever performances they'd been giving and showed what was at their cores. And at the core of Tyrion is someone who's been mocked, discounted and abused his whole life. Psychologically, of course. Physically, he's had all the comforts he could want -- the Lannister gold ensured that he was never without wine, women and song.

But he'd never felt accepted or truly loved until he met Tysha, and Tywin made sure that Tyrion understood that his two weeks of wedded bliss were a lie. Tyrion takes refuge in wine and paid companionship because, on some level, he thinks that he doesn't deserve more and that it would be stupid for him to expect more. Yet hidden under the layers of the most hardened cynic is a disillusioned romantic, and Tyrion's quest to keep hold of his humanity in a world that is determined strip him of it is one of the most compelling things about Martin's tale.

And yes, I've had my share of issues with Peter Dinklage's performance, but there was no mistaking the pain on Tyrion's face as he recalled that awful memory. In the course of 24 hours or so, Tyrion was given command of his own mini-army, heard them chant his name ("Half man! Half man!") before battle, and found a woman, Shae, who bested him in games of intellectual and emotional combat. It's been an eventful time for Tyrion, and Dinklage played Tyrion's frustration, confusion and bittersweet pain well.

He also smartly depicted Tyrion's slowly dawning enjoyment at being recognized as the leader of the hill tribes. But for my money, the best Tyrion line of the night was "Look at how much fun we're having!" Bronn, Shae and Tyrion are an enjoyable combination (and let me not forget to praise Jerome Flynn's subtle and droll performance as Bronn).

At this point, it's no surprise that Emilia Clarke can flawlessly take Dany through an entire range of emotions in quick succession with supple grace, but it's still worth commenting on. As she bent over the dying Drogo, she was terrified, of course, but she was also determined and, when questioned by one of Drogo's bloodriders, regal and intimidating. Talk about putting on a performance: Dany knew that if she wavered for one moment in her command of the khal, she and her baby were dead. Here's a case of the TV show doing a consistently better job of making me care about a character than the book did: I never warmed up to the Dany of the novels, but her determination here is backed up by the vulnerability and growing intelligence that Clarke has given the character. You both feel for her and understand why others take her seriously.

Taylor did a terrific job of depicting the weirdness and surreal quality that took over once Mirri Maz Duur began her incantation in that tent. Again, Taylor put us in a character's shoes: With clever use of camera angles and sound design, he made me feel the hot sun, the extra load this young girl was carrying in her belly, the dizzying fear that drove her to make these choices. There was certainly the sense in all those scenes that it wasn't just Drogo's fate that hung in the balance, but possibly the future of Westeros. And the scream of that horse will be echoing in my head for days.

Another young character may hold the fate of nations in his hands as well. One thing the television show has become adept at is showing us layers of important things and ideas, sometimes in a single shot. Because the cast is so skilled, they can give us moments like Robb's return from the Lannister encampment.

As Robb rode up to his mother, Richard Madden showed us all the things that had happened to the young noblemen on that fateful night. There was a sense of exultation in a mission gone well and the somewhat stunned look of a young man who's seen real battle for the first time. Robb was in control of himself, but you could also tell that the thought of what he'd done -- he'd sent 2,000 men to there deaths as a diversion -- already weighed on him. This mixture of regret and resolution was all we needed to see to know that, as Robb said moments later, this war is far from over.

Hail of bullets (or arrows):

• For newbies to this story, were you shocked or surprised by Ned's death? Had the Internet ruined that surprise for you? Did you think the show wouldn't do something like that to a major character? About that... welcome to Westeros. That's how things happen here. Just warning newcomers. It's not always easy, even for the readers/viewers of the tale.

• Speaking of Robb's plot, even though Jaime was only on-screen briefly, I thought I could detect some grudging respect for the eldest Stark son on Jaime's face. What Robb did was clever and brutal, and though he's nobody's idea of a nice guy, Jaime can respect a resourceful adversary. Also, I loved how Madden delivered the line, "We're not doing it your way."

I haven't said much about Michelle Fairley lately, but she's been terrific. I especially liked her scene with Ser Walder Frey. When she dared him to turn her and her family over to the Lannisters, she showed the strong, fiery will that always lurks beneath Catelyn's practical, controlled exterior.

• Visually speaking, I feel fully immersed in this world, and I thought the depiction of the Twins was especially pleasing. And the dilapidated, sad castle of the Freys told us visually all we needed to know about that grasping, unpleasant lord. An idea Martin returns to again and again is that nobility is by no means the province of noblemen and noblewomen -- in fact, sometimes you find more innate nobility and fairness in a Wildling, a butcher's boy or a hill tribesman than you do in the homes of the kingdom's wealthiest aristocrats.

• In an episode full of characters sizing up deals and making serious compromises, Robb's bargain with Lord Frey -- well, it didn't put him in physical danger but it certainly sounded like a recipe for personal unhappiness. But as we've seen time and again, characters here are expected to serve not just themselves but their houses and their kingdoms. Balancing all those demands isn't easy, and getting to pick his spouse probably wasn't a luxury that Robb was ever going to have.

• One more thought regarding the Tyrion-Bronn-Shae scene: Now that is how you do exposition. No one took their clothes off but I managed to remain interested! Amazing. Seriously, I think the show's just gotten better at that sort of thing. We got a whole huge chunk of Tyrion's past handed to us, but it felt organic and right for that moment to transpire as it did. It didn't feel like clunky backstory-filling-in or sexposition; it just worked.

• I have a feeling I'm going to get asked this question a lot in the next few years: "What should I do, read the books first or watch the TV show?" I really don't have an answer to that. What do you think?

• The birds flying overhead -- homage to John Woo? Discuss.

Here are a few housekeeping notes. Please keep in mind that every commenter will be held to the standards set forth below.

• On this site, we observe the Lurkers Rule: The environment here should be so accepting, so calm and so non-screechy that the most timid lurker should feel it's safe to express his or her opinion. If you have a problem with any comment on this site, hit the "report this comment" button or email me at maureen.ryan@teamaol.com.

• If you express yourself in a hostile, repetitive or unpleasant fashion, or if your starting point is that 'Game of Thrones' is not something that should be subjected to thoughtful, rational discussions of its positive and negative aspects, this is not the site for you. If you can't be civil and respect other commenters, your comments will be deleted.

• Please, please don't mention any spoilers about what happens in subsequent episodes. No talking about what happens in the books beyond the story lines we saw here.

• If you're new to the world of 'Game of Thrones,' do check out the fan sites Westeros, Winter is Coming and Tower of the Hand. They've got active message boards and a ton of interviews and intel, and if you want to get deeper into this world, you can't go wrong with those sites. HBO's got an extensive Viewer's Guide here. And of course, if you want to check out our features and interviews with the 'GoT' brain trust, including Martin, Emilia Clarke and executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, we've got loads of stories here.

The 'Game of Thrones' season 1 finale airs 9PM ET Sunday on HBO.

Follow @MoRyan on Twitter.

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Surya

Hi Maureen,

Excellent review. I have just started watching GoT and after watching this episode last night, I was so shocked I went to sleep thinking about it, woke up thinking about it.....
Once Ned was arrested, I knew he had to die soon (but I thought it would be Cersei's decision). It was shocking and brought tears to my eyes all the same. I kept hoping they wouldn't kill off a major character.

No, the internet did not spoil my surprise as I don't usually read up on a movie or show I'm watching. (After reading your review, I feel I have been missing out!) I love your interpretation of the nuances of each character's growth. I also like how you have a strict anti-spoiler rule. Thanks!

January 27 2012 at 2:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
clyons

Maureen, your review was excellent, thank you.

To my non-GRRM reading friends who may decide to switch off the series because Ned is no longer with us, let me tell you, to a reader, this type of comment is as frustrating as watching Ned bumble his way through Kings Landing week after week! Like Ned, you haven't a clue.

June 16 2011 at 2:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Warren G Wonka

People like Larry Williams (love him) don't fully realize that "A Game of Thrones" is the backstory for six novels and at least seven seasons. He would probably have the same problem if GRRM had started the song earlier, and the noble and romantic hero Rhaegar Targareon, The Last Dragon, got kissed by a hammer at the end of episode nine of "A Flight of a Dragon".

June 16 2011 at 4:34 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Nic

I'm a newbie who hasn't read the books and I'm loving every minute of this show. I wanted to read them a while back but held off once I heard about the show, and I'm glad I did because I like TV to keep me guessing, I overthink way too much trying to figure out what's really going on and enjoy feeling [a little bit smug;)] when I get it right and still shocked/surprised when I don't. That said, I'm loving it so much I expect I'll be getting stuck into the books as soon as this season is over as knowing the next part of the story is out there and choosing to wait for it may be beyond my powers of self control! I'd be interested to know what you all think about the book first/show first question, to those who have read/watched both is this a bad idea or is the show even better when you already know what's coming?

It's interesting reading your reviews Mo as you have more than once said you didn't feel any connection to Deanerys in the books, but for me she's the most compelling character of all. I love that in amongst all the men and the often overlooked women (some of the scenes involving women as mere sex objects I have found extremely annoying an unnecessary pandering to a male audience and yes, I get that's part of the GoT world but there must be so much that's been left out of the too-short season to fit all that in! There are women in the audience too!) yet here is this awesome female character who seems to hold all the power to control the outcome of the war. Only things change so much so fast that I couldn't begin to guess what will happen next with her, will she lead the dothraki to war and win back her throne or will they drive her out and hunt her down for her actions? I can't call it, and I love that.

Also because you asked Mo: No I wasn't surprised by Ned's death. I'll admit that Viserys' early demise the other week did surprise me, but after that it was clear it's just that kind of world. The best kind in my opinion, as when you know the threat isn't real because you know the show wouldn't go there it takes all the enjoyment out of watching! Also there were only two ways it could go: Ned had to die or be revealed to be right, which would mean byebye Cersei and Joffrey and Jaime and the main plot line that has been central to the whole season, so I guess I had a hunch ;)

June 14 2011 at 7:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
stikedc

Thoroughly enjoyed your review, thank you.

I, too, was a bit disappointed about the lack of battle, but yeah, its about the money, isn't it.

Enjoyed the humor in the Twins & arranged marriage sequence with Ma Stark, and Tyrion getting knocked on his little butt going into battle.

Horrendous re Ned, but yes, spectacular direction. This is as strong as the strongest Mad Men episodes, and that's saying something.

Jaime... good. Haven't read the book but how long do we have to wait 'till Arya gives Joffrey the pointy end?

June 14 2011 at 2:15 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
stikedc

thoroughly enjoyed your review. thank you.

June 14 2011 at 2:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
bob

I was shocked they killed Ned. I haven't read the book and didn't have the story spoiled by the Web. I've found the story to be irritating to now. Bad things constantly happen to those that I root for. At some point you think OK now is the time when Ned rips the little twerp in two. I suppose it was gutsy to kill Ned but it was disappointing. It was redeemed only by Robb capturing Jaime. Of course that was tainted due to the "deal" Robb made. I like pleasant endings and nothing about this show has been pleasant. At some point the entertainment value of watching the wretched constantly defeat the "good" will be more than I care to watch.

June 14 2011 at 8:57 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to bob's comment
thewintersnightx

Sorry Bob, but the problem with your assertions is that the "bad" guys are not necessarily the bad guys, with the exception of Joffery. There is no clear good guy per se. There is no black and white. Perhaps you should read the books, perhaps you should get to the third book where a character such as Jaime Lannister who is generally portrayed as Sinister, actually gets some significant character growth. Perhaps you should leave the complex fantasy stories to us, and read more simplistic fantasies like that of the horrid Eragon books. This is not for the faint of heart.

June 14 2011 at 11:12 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to thewintersnightx's comment
Agnessa Schizoid

You do realize that you put a spoiler about fate of one character by revealing, at very least, when they will NOT die? Why can't you people to stop ruining experience for others? It is said crystal clear - do not talk about anything from later books! How hard is that to get? People want to find out who's good, who's shady, and who's all black, by themselves, in due time, it is part of ASOIAF experience.

June 16 2011 at 12:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down
Joe C

Bob, avoid Hamlet.

June 07 2012 at 9:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Chris

As a non-booker, I was stunned by Ned's death. GoT has done a spectacular job with their episode-ending cliffhangers, so while Arya was rushing toward Ned and everyone around him was freaking out, I kept thinking, "Oh, those jerks are going to leave us with the sword hanging over Ned's neck and there'll be a last-minute save at the beginning of the next episode." But...nope. Things just kept going on and on...and when I saw that sword to the left of Ned, getting into position, I couldn't believe it was actually happening. My hand was over my gaped mouth went things went to black.

Total gut punch. Total gutsy brilliance.

June 13 2011 at 10:30 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Nathan Meinzer

I'm a big fan of the book series, and as such, have been biased in favor of liking the show. Mo has done such an excellent job of discussing the show's problems without characterizing these problems as fundamental flaws of the fantasy genre, as other reviewers have. It's been very rewarding watching the series develop into something more mature than the clunky first few episodes, which, truth be told, I adored simply because of my love for the source material. And I'm glad Mo has had both faith in the series ability to work as well as a reasoned approach to the problems its had getting its footing. I'm very excited about the 2nd season, as the further the show continues, the less exposition/background will need to be presented, and we will get more and more episodes like this one, that are totally "in the moment".

June 13 2011 at 7:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
klm19001

As much as I've enjoyed watching GoT, I'm considering abandoning the series. Ned's execution bothered me considerably--first b/c now, nothing is different in the series than if he'd never been in it. He's the one who determined the paternities of Joffrey and the King's bastards. Unless his missive to Robert's brother gets through, his whole purpose in the Lannister mess was for nothing. Why watch if it's a waste of time? If I end up where I began, without his search serving a purpose? I feel dragged along on an emotional goosechase with no satisfying conclusion. Obviously, I haven't read the books, so it's possible Ned's missive will reach beyond his grave. If so, then that would be some redemption for the journey. I also found it outside of Ned's character to confess to a crime he didn't commit. It's such a waste of my time to watch a man commit spiritual and physical suicide to have nothing come from it. Love the style of the show, the acting, the fantasy, all the visual glory of this show. When I read or when I watch, I expect something to come from the sacrifice of a character, not to end up in the beginning of the story with all the Lannister wickedness as secret and protected as if Ned never existed.

June 13 2011 at 5:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
7 replies to klm19001's comment

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