Winter is Coming: Game of Thrones Season 2

Another day goes by and Game of Thrones Season 8 is yet to be released. I am now one with the cold. Maybe this is how you become a White Walker, who knows? It’s been a long while since I’ve left my recliner. Maybe I should go grab a bite to eat, or maybe go for a walk, or maybe, just maybe, I should change out of this ridiculous uniform and look for my Dothraki outfit. Then maybe winter will go and summer will be here.

I don’t know, I’m still mid-way through Season 4 of Game of Thrones and I’m up to the part … oh wait, better not say in case of spoilers, people don’t like spoilers. Once this winter is done I’m going to turn this little journal that I’m writing into my own book franchise and it’ll make loads of money. I’ll be the next Tolkien or the next George R. R. Martin. Oooh, I can envision it now. But it’s still cold out so I’m going to get changed into something more appropriate then I’ll come back and finish this future gold mine that I’m currently squatting over.

A Passage by The Anti Blog Complainer

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Season 2 of Game of Thrones is bigger and larger than the last season. There are new locations, new characters, more boobs, more storylines that you are forced to keep up with, occasional dragon scenes and there are more awesome and shocking moments than people excited for Star Wars Episode IX. The really big question is – Does bigger mean better? I don’t know, I guess we’ll find out together.

What’s Happening and What’s Going on: So this season takes place about a week or two after Ned Stark’s death and because of this, there are alot of kings wanting their piece of that pathetic thing they call the Iron Throne. You have the Boy King Joffrey who currently sits on the pathetic throne with his mummy and his new hand, Uncle Tyrion, by his side. Robb Stark is claiming himself as the King in the North with his loving mummy by his side. Robb sends his best pal Theon Greyjoy, to make a deal with his father, but all that does is inspire his father to take the throne for himself. You also have King Renly and then we were introduced to his older brother King Stannis Baratheon, and he has his faithful advisor Melisandre, who worships a satanic fire god. (Nice.)

You also have Daenerys, doing her own thing in the desert claiming she should sit on the throne of patheticness. Then there is mopey Jon Snow, going over the wall to fight the violent savages called the Wildlings. There is stuff going on at Winterfell, but honestly who cares. Sansa is still annoying as hell, same with Jaime but luckily he isn’t in it that much this season, but it really isn’t enough. Lastly, Sansa’s little sister Arya is out doing her own thing this season and that’s pretty cool.

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Another fire lover. Now all you need is an earth, water and air lover.

The Highlights of the Season: There are alot of things I really liked about this season but I will mainly focus on the standouts. Let’s start in King’s Landing – after putting up with a whole season of the so honourable Ned Stark making stupid decisions it’s a really nice change to see Tyrion as the new hand. He isn’t as honourable and he plans these really smart strategic moves to clean up this scummy city. Probably his best move is when Tyrion tells Littlefinger, Varys and Grand Maester Pycelle separately that he’s sending Cersei’s daughter Myrcella to a possible husband to be. He does eventually send her away but really the plan is a ploy to find out which one of them would rat to Cersei. It’s awesome to see the big masterminds of this show get outsmarted for this one time.

All of Tyrion’s scenes with Varys and Cersei are great. I was considering mentioning this character last season but she’s more relevant now and that is I love Shae. Shae is awesome as she doesn’t take anyone’s crap, she is somewhat mysterious and also a badass. She has some really great scenes with Tyrion and Sansa and is probably one of the best changes in the show from the books.

Next I want to talk about Arya as I never mentioned her last season because I found her storyline uninteresting other than for her dancing master. It had a pretty great start but once she got to Harrenhal, I really got into her character and storyline. The show took an interesting departure from the books as her pairing with Tywin Lannister is such a genius move. They had a really interesting dynamic where he figures out she’s a highborn girl pretending to be a peasant. It’s a shame they parted ways near the end of the season as I would have loved to see more of these two together. I also liked the introduction of Jaqen H’ghar, especially the three death wishes he grants her as they had a far greater impact than the deaths in the book. Overall it was a great storyline, the only downside is the poor casting choice for the second Mountain as he’s tall and other than that he sucks.

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Arya is cool now. Sansa it’s time you upped your game!

Up next are more smaller things I liked, such as how faithful Theon’s storyline is to the books. It’s not completely spot on but it perfectly shows how desperately he wants to appease his father then only to realise when it’s too late how big of an idiot he was for capturing Winterfell in the first place. I also liked his sister Yara and how she teases her sulky brother. (I just find it funny.) Another character who has changed alot from her book counterpart, and for the better, is Margaery Tyrell. In the books you would be surprised just how little screen time she had. But here she is completely fleshed out, extremely devious and cunning.

The Lowlights of the Season: Here is the downside of messing about with the original source material. Pretty much all of the scenes before Theon arrives in Winterfell are super boring. This is mainly to do with major characters from the books being cut out. The scenes with Jaime in episode 7 where he kills his own cousin in a quick attempt to escape only for Catelyn to break him out later were just really hard to watch and I hated them.

Daenerys storyline is really dull. Where she spends three episodes in the desert then goes to this boring city where all of the side characters are much more interesting than her. It’s mostly fine but I’m really not a fan of how the show butchered the House of Undying sequence which, in the books, plays a massive role on what’s to come. Here it’s like a hallucination as she goes to an icy ruined King’s Landing then she’s at The Wall and then reunited with Khal Drogo. When the dream is over, she kills the warlock and every other character from this stupid city. This whole side plot just feels entirely pointless to me.

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To be honest this storyline sucked in the books but this part was the key!

But the worst storyline prize goes to, of course, my least favourite character on this show: Johnny Boy Mopey Snow or he should really be called, the most incompetent stupidest nincompoop in this entire show. The stop-over at Craster’s Keep was boring but Jon made it worse by getting them all kicked out by snooping into Craster’s private business. But the worst part is the major differences with his journey with Qhorin Halfhand. It’s all pretty faithful until he meets the wildling woman Ygritte and is ordered to kill her. (Oh no, what a dilemma!) So, instead of letting her go and going back to The Halfhand like he does in the book, this version has him take her as a hostage. I am guessing his intention is to bring her back to his camp for more questioning or to find someone else to finish the job he couldn’t do!!!

But it doesn’t matter as he lets Ygritte’s sexual advances get to him and stupidly gets himself captured, which again never happened in the book. The Halfhand is there too as we find out the rest of his team died because they were out looking for Jon. (What a bastard!) The last episode has Halfhand challenge Jon to a duel as in this version he can’t really mention anything about entering the ranks of the Wildlings!!! Whatever…Qhorin Halfhand is killed because Jon Stupid Idiot Snow begged to join him on his scouting mission.

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Ygritte was right, Jon Snow really did know nothing.

You probably noticed this season that if something isn’t made very clear then you bet that it makes perfect sense in the books. For example, at Harrenhal they keep raving on about this Brotherhood and it’s not clear at all what that is, but in the book you get more information than just ‘Oh, the Brotherhood is at it again’. Another is Winterfell being burned down. The main problem here is they decided to cut out another character who they are obviously saving for next season but who would have solved this big plot hole. I could go on but I have another sub section to go so let’s jump to that.

The Episodes: The first four episodes of the season I enjoyed very much with the highlight being the scenes at King’s Landing and the Iron Islands. Some great moments in between include: Yoren’s bad-ass death, Tyrion’s dinner conversation with Janos Slynt and Melisandre giving birth to the shadow thing. But I think a really good turning point is the sixth episode, The Old Gods and The New, featuring great moments such as Theon arriving in Winterfell and executing Ser Rodrik plus all of Arya’s scenes in this episode are great. Also the riots in King’s Landing and Dany discovering someone has taken her dragons.

It picks up again at Episode 9, Blackwater, which is famous for having the first major battle in the show’s history. I remember when I watched the episode where Robb’s army ambushed all these Lannister soldiers which was annoyingly shown offscreen. I was convinced that this show would never be able to pull off a major battle. But this episode proved me wrong as it’s a much smaller scale version of the Battle of Helm’s Deep from Lord of Rings. This was my favourite episode when I first watched it as I was blown away as if my head was filled with wildfire. It still looks somewhat cheap and some of the camera work needs some work but it’s still a great episode as it has been nicely built up to for the entire season. There are tons of great moments in this episode such as the ending of the episode, also Peter Dinklage and Lena Headey giving their best performances yet.

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This moment literally blew my mind away when I first watched it.

Overall Thoughts: Another solid season with pretty much all of the positives I pointed out in my first season review. It’s nice to see this show starting to look less like a TV show and more like a big budget movie. I think the show proved that with the Battle of Blackwater. The only real problem for me was that some of the changes they made were probably best left the way they were in the books. Great season, another 8/10, another must watch season.

This is the end of the review so until next time, I have been the Blog Complainer, Signing Out.

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