Between the new job and the family vacation, I have been slacking on my reading this month. I did manage to make my way through Love and Capital by Mary Gabriel, a biography of Karl and Jenny Marx. It was a reader recommendation, and I enjoyed it even though I didn’t get into it right away. I have never been interested in Karl Marx, which contributed to my “struggle” as it were; I get the sense that he was the kind of person who was more magnetic in person than, say, on the page, as reflected in other people’s words. Nevertheless, I really liked reading about the social and political milieu in which Marx moved; though I have read quite a bit about the Victorian era in England, I knew relatively little about what was happening during that time in the rest of Europe. From that perspective, the book was a solidly interesting read.
OK, it’s time. Game of Thrones, people.
I’m a bit late to this, seeing as how the season is already almost half over (sad face), but I couldn’t NOT write about my favourite show. Spoilers and speculation coming up!
DO NOT GO ANY FURTHER IF YOU DON’T WANT TO BE SPOILED FOR GoT SEASON 7.
I MEAN IT.
THIS IS YOUR LAST WARNING.
OK, so here is the thing. We all know that Season 7 is short and that the story — with its various divergent lines — is coming to an end. That’s creating a sense of urgency that makes the episodes this season (so far) seem oddly muted and slow-paced. We’ve had exciting developments here and there, so I don’t think it’s an entirely fair impression, but I keep finding myself saying “GET ON WITH IT” to various characters on screen. The ice zombies are coming, for crissakes! Jamie needs to hurry up and fulfill that “little brother” prophecy and throttle Cersei because the whole war-for-the-Iron-Throne is taking up too much screen time. And, listen, I know; it’s not even that much. We had three big battles — which, in any other season, would have taken up 3 episodes by themselves — in the span of, like, 20 minutes tops. Again, in any other season, I would have loved to see this plotline unfold slowly because I have enjoyed the trajectory of Cersei. But at this point in time, does it matter? This is where I think the show erred; it spent too much time dragging things out in seasons 5 and 6, and now has to cram too much good stuff in a little more than a full season (over 2 years, blergh). I blame GRRM, and the promise of the book that still hasn’t materialized. The show writers should have struck out on their own, so to speak, earlier so that we could have gotten all of the war stuff out of the way earlier.
Dany and Jon. Fire and Ice. It’s the meeting we have all been anticipating for years, yes? Did it feel a little, um, anticlimactic to anyone else, or just me? Again, I enjoy a good slow build in normal circumstances, but it’s just killing me here. Of course, I am dying to see what these two characters bring out in each other and how that will impact the story, but Emilia and Kit’s chemistry did not bowl me over in episode 3. The most tangible emotion was Jon’s frustration at the fact that no one is taking the ice zombies seriously, so point to Kit on that one. Emilia does imperiousness well, but I hope we get to see some different takes from her soon.
Other quick thoughts:
– Damn, Lannisters are way better strategists than Targaryens. Still, this war needs to be over already. I do hope that Cersei gives Euron her special brand of queen’s justice before it’s all said and done, however. I hate that guy, and I don’t think he’s in the least interesting as a villain.
– Assuming that Jon ends up riding Rhaegal (named after his father), who is going to ride Viserion? My vote is still with Tyrion. There would be some nice symmetry there, since Viserys was a younger brother too.
– Bran needs to stop being creepy (and unnecessarily cryptic) if he wants to be useful in the least.
– I can’t wait for the Arya/Sansa reunion. I hope it goes better for poor Sansa than the Bran one … but I kinda doubt it.
– I also can’t wait for the Arya/Hound reunion. I cannot figure out how either of them fits into the bigger scheme of things at this point, and I CANNOT wait to find out.
– I still don’t care about Jorah, but Sam is about to confirm the R+L marriage, yes? Those old scrolls contain more than just paper mites is all I’m saying. Dany’s insistence on her birthright this episode convinced me. She’s going to have to deal with the realization that she is not the “rightful” heir after all. I think it’s going to be interesting to see where she goes from there.
– Of course, it will also be interesting to see Jon react to the truth of his parentage, but less so in the bigger scheme of things. A) I don’t think it will change who he is as a person or leader. B) I think Jon is never gonna sit on the Iron Throne. This is pure speculation on my part, but it’s been my theory ever since I read the ASOIAF books 4 years ago. I think Jon is the prophesied Prince Who Was Promised/Azor Ahai … and I think he will sacrifice himself to save Westeros in the end.
– Who will sit on the Iron Throne after the Night King is (hopefully) vanquished? I’m still not sure, but at this point, I think Sansa would probably make a better queen than Dany. Come at me?
OK, your turn: tell me all your GoT theories, spoilers/speculation, and thoughts on the new season. Winter is coming!