The clock was ticking away as I sat there, unblinking, waiting for it to strike 9. HBO used that time wisely to plug ALL their series because nobody was going to move an inch. Tick, tick, tick….wait a minute!! It was 9:01 – WHAT!! Then it starts and there is nothing but white noise (as if your cable has gone out) for about 30-45 seconds; maybe it was 10 seconds. I couldn’t tell exactly – it seemed like an hour. Then it started…
I know that Season 3 is supposed to cover approximately half of A Storm of Swords and rightly so. There’s way too much to cover in the book. It picked up right after we left Season 2, with Samwell running from the White Walkers, Tyrion living in his little attic all cut up, Jon Snow going to meet Mance Rayder, the King Beyond the Wall, Daenerys. having gotten her ship, sailing to Astapor to acquire an army for her battle to take back the Iron Throne and, lastly, Stannis at Dragonstone, brooding over his loss of the Battle of the Blackwater allowing no one except Melisandre to console him.
I didn’t see much of a disconnect in that and was pleased, however, I really wanted to see some of my favorites (as if I really have favorites) – Arya, Bran, Jamie, Brienne – even Lord Varys – hmm…what could he be doing? It probably would have been impossible to catch up with all the characters and their ongoing situations without turning it into soundbites which wouldn’t fly with the GoT fans at all.
Having said all that, I have to confess that I was so engrossed that the first time I glanced at the clock, it was 9:47. What, it’s almost over; it went by in a millisecond! I watched it at 9pm and I watched it at 10pm. I gobbled it up like a starving animal. I loved every second.
The one scene that floored me was between Tyrion Lannister and his father. Tywin Lannister is a complete and utter shit of a man. The look in Tyrion’s eyes moved me to tears when his father was telling him how he loathed the fact that he was born a Lannister – that the gods had seen fit to humble Tywin by giving him this dwarf of a son, and the complete disgust he felt at having to see him waddle around. He would rather be eaten by maggots (or some such wording – I’ve only watched it twice) than have Tyrion become heir to Casterly Rock. He showed more kindness to Arya Stark, for all intents and purposes, a complete stranger. The success of Blackwater had much to do with Tyrion’s strategy (not to mention his courage in battle) and he gets absolutely no credit. Instead, adding insult to injury, his father berates him terribly. No good deed goes unpunished with our little Lion!
I thought Jon Snow handled himself brilliantly when confronted with Mance Rayder’s incisive questioning. He had his story down pat – and one that would definitely fly with the Wildlings and Mance. Lord Commander Mormont knew that Craster was sacrificing his newborn sons to the White Walkers and turned a blind eye. Jon Snow told Mance the truth and that was enough to convince Mance (at least for now). It makes me wonder how that will affect Jon’s impression of the Wildlings and their way of life.
The last scene gave me chills. I love Barristan Selmy! He’s the epitome of duty and honor to me. When he bowed and swore fealty to Daenerys, I welled up…again. Cersei will have to contend with that coming back to bite her in the ass…if something else doesn’t happen to her first. Either way, I’m fine with it!
It’s going to be a very delicate balance translating book to screen. Timing will have to work absolutely. This 3rd book has an incredible amount of intensity. I can see the slow build-up catching us up with the characters and then all hell is probably going to break loose leaving us completely spent at the end of the season. Bring it on!!
Oh, and Dany’s dragons are mid-way between adorable and scary as hell… Still, they’re her babies only their first words were “Dracarys”.