Tag Archives: aidan gillen

Television Tuesday :: a devil’s bargain?

25 Jul

Spoilers for Game of Thrones weeks one and two ahead.

You guys, I really want to maintain my passion for this canon. I’m sure you know that. For the most part the first two episodes have been perfectly fine! Sure there’s been a fair bit of “yes, but…”

  • Jon (Kit Harington) and Sansa (Sophie Turner) coexist and have some modicum of mutual respect for each other, and he gave her leadership credentials while he was away on business, but also they disagree openly and at least once per episode and the potential conflict between them is a major talking point of what’s to come.
  • Sansa and Jon have both essentially told Littlefinger (Aidan Gillen) to bugger off, but he still hasn’t.
  • Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) is there, supporting the hell out of Sansa, but she hasn’t actually done all that much (nor have the circumstances of Brienne’s last scene in s6 been discussed, which isn’t that big of a deal but should probably happen at some point in some context).
  • Lyanna (Bella Ramsey) has been kicking everyone’s asses verbally, but I really want to see her take up arms dammit.
  • Arya (Maisie Williams) had a very nice moment with some Lannister-military randoms, but one of them was Ed Sheeran and I am opposed to that on principle.
  • Arya also ran into her direwolf Nymeria, but Nymeria is a damn wolf and wanted to stay in the Riverlands doing wolf stuff. Arya understood this, but it was still sad.
  • Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) has people around her and that’s really cool, but nobody seems to be 100% on the same page of how to handle things.
  • Grey Worm (Jacob Anderson) and Missandei (Nathalie Emmanuel) had an absolutely beautiful love scene that was honestly revolutionary and I’m kind of shocked it even happened because it was so beautiful and also given the particulars it was not really like love scenes on anything, but now I’m worried about both of them because of it.
  • Euron (Pilou Asbaek) is more like he is in the books, but that means he’s actually the worst terrible curse word and has already done things that rank him with being as heinous as Ramsey Bolton. Things that are so heinous I didn’t even watch them, just read about them because I am bloody furious. Expect, by season’s end, an essay on the mishandling of my Dornish babes. Because Anger is happening.
  • We’ve finally seen the alliance between Dany, Yara (Gemma Whelan), Ellaria (Indira Varma), and Olenna (Diana Rigg), and while contentious in part (as mentioned above) it’s a bunch of badass ladies being badass, but we’re only two episodes in and everything has already gone to hell for them.
  • Yara and Ellaria kissed, but now they are both at assface Euron’s mercy.
  • Obara (Keisha Castle-Hughes), Nymeria (Jessica Henwick), and Tyene (Rosabell Laurenti Sellers) had an actual scene with lines and conversation and sister banter and the actresses have such a good dynamic with each other even though I wish they’d get to show the non-banter aspect of their sisterhood too, but Obara and Nym are now dead and Tyene is also at assface’s mercy. Did I mention how mad I am?

It’s a devil’s bargain. You get some things and have to give up others. You’re so happy about beautiful things but then Euron exists. Etcetera.

–your fangirl heroine.



Television Tuesday :: 2016 and the No Trope Bingo cards

27 Dec

Ah, our old friends.

Disclaimer: I have watched maybe like… eight different shows this year because I literally can’t be bothered to undertake a lot of things that people tell me I should because I know they’ll fail me eventually and I’ll be sad.


Bechdel fail: Agent Carter was again 100% on this, of course. (This season was far from perfect, but I’m still going to miss you, my Peggy my darling.) Agents of SHIELD‘s 2015 efforts put them above 90%, including a couple episodes that were just “smack the Bechdel test in the face,” so that’s pretty damn good; Game of Thrones also stepped it up this year, coming in around 70% I believe (the document I was keeping track in, very scientifically, got lost when I switched phones this week, oops). At least in my shows, this year did better at this than other categories.

disregarded logic: I mean, The Librarians always disregards logic. That’s kind of its thing. But again, I did not do too much screaming at my television going “THIS MAKES NO SENSE,” unlike years prior.

underused/invisible POC: Agent Carter… managed a whole one POC character this year, Jason Wilkes (Reggie Austin), so that was still not great but one is at least better than none. Game of Thrones did not know what the hell to do with Missandei (Nathalie Emmanuel) and Grey Worm (Jacob Anderson) this year, which was annoying, nor did it give the Sand Snakes a lot to do although what little they did was still, in my opinion, delicious. Penny Dreadful racebent Dr. Jekyll and Dracula, so that was kind of cool? And then meanwhile Agents of SHIELD ran a glorious parade of POC characters and killed two white guys, while Luke Cage was beautifully black all the time and deal with it if you don’t like it. I feel like statistically this is a decent picture of television at large. A lot of things not really succeeding, a few standing much farther out.

dead family manpain: the Tower of Joy, which only halfway counts. Dead daughters came up sometimes, but usually from women. I’ve managed to cut most of the dead family manpain out of my television life, I hope.

invisible lesbians: no, this year was just full of dead lesbians and Sapphic ladies, in outstanding number but mostly not on my own shows. Game of Thrones instead gave us Yara Gayjoy (let’s be real, probably more like Yara Female-Leaning-But-Pan-joy, but the pun is too good) and let her shine. Penny Dreadful had a Sapphic army. And all the women of SHIELD continue to be outstandingly queer together, though it goes unsaid, but it’s not like it’s been said and it’s not being shown. It’s just implicit and I have a lot of feelings about it (also, Jemma Simmons is in the narrative closet and I will passionately argue this point based on my own real life experience).

vicious female rivalry: the demon possessing Kate (Madison Davenport) and Kisa (Eiza Gonzalez) got pretty scrappy. But considering that the paradigm of this category is Cersei vs. Margaery, it’s not quite the same thing. Cersei (Lena Headey) did in fact get way too vicious on Margaery (Natalie Dormer) and I mourn but also, narratively, at least we finally got Feast for Crows Cersei.

ho-yay: there’s none I’m explicitly recalling, which means if there was any it at least wasn’t overall detrimental.

infectious diseases: thank the gods, no.

dead prostitutes: there was a passel of them on Preacher, but Tulip (Ruth Negga) made her opinions abundantly clear and that was sort of justice for them. On the other hand, Lily (Billie Piper) led the above-mentioned army of prostitutes who murdered men for abusing them, and though poor Justine (Jessica Barden) willfully went to her end, they took revenge and it was beautiful.

dead little girls: see above re: families. Again, nothing egregious, thank the gods.

sexualized violence: eh. There’s a fine fine line, which is always tread by television and film. Nothing egregious, but also could be avoided more.

Madonna/whore: there was a bit of a play with this with Margaery’s religious conversion, but it wasn’t narratively sanctioned so much as acknowledged as a game she was playing.

Oedipal undertones: Cersei’s always a little cesty with her family members, including baby Tommen (Dean Charles Chapman), but with Cersei it kind of just is what it is and you move on.

fridging: aside from the 10001 dead Sapphic women, many of whom I cannot speak to personally, and beloved Barb (Shanon Purser), poor Margaery passed, but I don’t know it was a traditional fridge; Vanessa (Eva Green) met her end but it was of her volition; Emily (Lucy Griffiths) was among the dead of Preacher but, eh, that was a whole town, it could be worse; Candace (Deborah Ayorinde) was more vaulted than fridged; but Lincoln Campbell (Luke Mitchell) died in a literal fire and took the corpse of Grant Ward (Brett Dalton) with him and that was justice.

gratuitous sex: I mean, nobody needed to see Grand Maester Pycelle all postcoitus but at least he died and it was also justice. A lot of sex scenes were awkward but not singularly space-fillers.

inappropriate male attention: as I cast disapproving eyes on Hive. As I cast disapproving eyes on anyone who ever looked at Nancy Wheeler, ever. As I cast disapproving eyes on Uncle Asshat Greyjoy. As I cast disapproving eyes on Dracula. Etc. This will be a problem for all eternity.

pedophilic Stockholm: mm, Sansa (Sophie Turner) basically told Littlefinger (Aidan Gillen) to fuck off in the most ladylike way possible so that was satisfying.

infidelity: see also, the Tower of Joy. Etc.

custody battles: no, thank the gods.

conscious irresponsibility: Jesse (Dominic Cooper) was irresponsible, but he was also possessed, so that kind of makes up for it. Etc.

narrative neglect: see above re: Missandei, Grey Worm, and the Sand Snakes. That would be my largest complaint.

uneven f :: m ratio: technically, this is true basically everywhere. SHIELD‘s main/main supporting cast is fairly even, and Agent Carter‘s wasn’t bad; overall, more ladies, though.

narratively excused sociopathy: plenty of sociopaths but the narrative fully knew how they were sociopaths and said it.

love triangles: eh. Ehhhh.


window dressing: mm, not in any particularly gratuitous circumsance.

narratively excused intolerance: see also: Preacher is set in a small town in Texas. It’s excused, but also it’s a picture of just that things are bad.

lack of POC: see above.

general male brooding: the only thing Lincoln Campbell did before he died, really.

lack of queer people: much much. I will observe that apparently Supergirl (which I’m still not watching, I admit) has done some cool coming-out stuff so that’s nice to hear.

narratively enforced gender policing: what of it I’ve seen has mostly been called out.

compulsive heteroeroticism: see also, romantic FitzSimmons. Jeepers.

crazy inbred hillbillies: none of those I’ve dealt with this year.

slut shaming: I’m sure there’s been but aside from the Margaery situation I’m blanking.

children as plot devices: Tommen is a plot device but honestly, that’s just how it is. Most of the kids this year were human props.

police brutality: requisite “I hate the Sokovia Accords and everything that comes from them even though a lot of it isn’t even on the TV shows” mention. Also, Luke Cage, but that was calling that out.

love interest syndrome: ah, my poor Jemma (Elizabeth Henstridge). It’ll be nice when this mess is over with. For example.

pseudo-incest: hm. I could have done without Mike (Finn Wolfhard) and Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown). That’s kind of in this category.

vaulting: see above re: Candace, for the biggest example.

gratuitous consequenceless substance abuse: mm, nah, I think there were pretty well consequences.

excused unwanted overtures: and most of these were unexcused, at least.

forgive your abusers: one interesting thing about the unfortunate Hive situation was, at least, Daisy’s (Chloe Bennet) stages of grief regarding her abuse, so that was the opposite of this… but then, this is another reason I’ll drag romantic FitzSimmons, though it’s obviously to a lesser degree. So.

compulsive motherhood: not really?

“don’t do the brave thing”: a fair amount of “I am doing a brave thing but you should not because you don’t deserve to get hurt,” which isn’t the same.

(evil) white guy redemption arc: mm hey, remember how Grant Ward died twice?

narrative double standard: catchall because always, often in critical reactions.

women as plot devices: again. Sort of always.

narratively excused non-con: this year was much better.

past non-con as cheap plot device: also better.

I’m less angry this year, but I watched fewer things. So.

–your fangirl heroine.


Television Tuesday :: a season 6 wrap-up.

5 Jul

Game of Thrones‘ season six was… well, it was pretty all right. I mourn my sweet gay babies Margaery (Natalie Dormer) and Loras (Finn Jones), bless them, but overall I am not disappointed and after last year’s mess that’s something, anyway? The requisite list of positives.

11. Davos (Liam Cunningham) finding out about Shireen (Kerry Ingram).
As y’all know, Shireen being murdered was my least favorite thing to happen in season five, and that’s saying quite a lot. So I guess it was a form of catharsis to see Davos finally find out what happened to his favorite girl and get really, truly mad about it. (I also liked that when Jon [Kit Harington] found out he didn’t have Melisandre [Carice van Houten] killed immediately but instead sent her on her way with a warning.)

10. Lyanna freaking Mormont (Bella Ramsey).
What a brilliant, scene-stealing kid. I had never seen her before in my life but my reaction after her first scene was “I’m so proud of her!” Boy howdy I love Mormont women just about as much as I don’t give a damn about the most prominent Mormont man.

9. Sam (John Bradley) and Gilly (Hannah Murray).
I actually quite liked the Horn Hill scenes, just overall; I liked how nice Sam’s mom and sister were, I liked how awkward Gilly was changing her clothes for the first time ever, I liked how Sam and Gilly both stood up to Sam’s jerk dad, I like how the power of love prevailed. And I really liked the Citadel library, sidenote.

8. Missandei (Nathalie Emmanuel) and Grey Worm (Jacob Anderson).
I just really like these two. I was not a big fan of all of the treading water that Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) had to do or how pointless most of his scenes felt, and in turn many of Missandei and Grey Worm’s, but Missandei and Grey Worm themselves are always wonderful. I really like how Missandei had no time for Tyrion’s bullshit plans and made no secret of that. I really like how the two of them spent most of the season dressed like dominatrixes/the male version thereof. I also really like that Missandei always calls him by his name in Valryian. That makes me smile a lot.

7. The Dornish matriarchy overhaul.
We had a beautiful moment with Ellaria queen (Indira Varma) and the Sand Snakes (Keisha Castle-Hughes, Jessica Henwick, Rosabell Laurenti Sellers) in the first episode, one cursory mention around 6.03 or 6.04 of the fact that they’d taken over Dorne, and then treaty negotiations with Olenna (Diana Rigg) in the finale. We didn’t see much of this matriarchy overhaul, but I support it fully. This puts me in the minority and I don’t give a single damn.

6. Sansa (Sophie Turner) and Jon.
Sansa and Jon really didn’t have a relationship before they went their separate ways in season one, but their reuniting was beautiful and their relationship development has been fascinating. The obvious thing to say is that it’s an indicator of Sansa’s increased maturity; it’s also giving her a chance to finally be volatile in productive-to-the-plot ways. Fucking Littlefinger (Aidan Gillen) is not looking to make this a happy ending, but it’s really interesting right now.

5. Sansa and Brienne (Gwendoline Christie).
Yes. This did not disappoint, Brienne’s loyalty is overwhelming, and I’m glad they at least still have each other.

4. Sansa and misandry.
One of the most brilliant moments this entire season was just Sansa’s facial reactions to Ramsay (Iwan Rheon) being killed by his dogs. Another thing I liked was when she yelled at Jon for not involving her in battle plans even though she knew about Ramsay more than any of them did. I also really liked her reaction to fucking Littlefinger’s completely unsurprising but nasty fantasy scenario: hand on the chest for stop, don’t touch me there, then “it’s a pretty picture” dripping disdain as she walked away. Sansa Stark is done with men and it’s beautiful.

3. Feast for Crows Cersei (Lena Headey).
Otherwise known as: I have been waiting for the Cersei I know from her POV chapters to finally get to show up and that Cersei is insane. Unfortunately, Benioff and Weiss seem too concerned with making the Lannisters sympathetic at times to allow them to be as interesting as in the books, so it was a long time coming for the full reveal. But now, after doing some horrible things and having some horrible things happen as a consequence, the Iron Throne is sat by completely bonkers Cersei, Darth Cersei, Mad Queen Cersei. I’m thrilled and Lena is going to do a great job.

2. The Targaryen-Greyjoy-Martell-Tyrell alliance.
I mean, I’m not keen on the fact that it had to come partially because of Margaery and Loras’ death, but “so Yara goes to Meereen, right, and she hooks up with Dany, and then Varys goes to get the Martells in on it because they have a thing with the Targaryens, and then the Tyrells come too because they’re awesome” sounds… not unlike some of my personal ideal scenarios. The show has less lady-kissing in this alliance (because Margaery is dead now and never confirmed queer, because they haven’t mentioned Nym being bisexual in the show yet, etc.) but it’s still happening.

1. Dany (Emilia Clarke) and Asha-Yara (Gemma Whelan).
But there might be lady-kissing here! It’s now canon that Asha-Yara likes girls (and she didn’t die!) and both actresses have mentioned that there is some definite flirtation going on between these two. They bantered about why Dany should accept these Greyjoys’ offer of ships and alliance, which is because Euron’s offer would come with marriage demands. “And I imagine your offer is free of any marriage demands?” Dany banters. “I never demand, but I’m up for anything really,” Asha-Yara declares, in a conversation that does sound just as Sapphic as my fantasy endings. I don’t know how this is going to go but dear gods let it go right. Because, quoth poor lost Doreah, “love comes in at the eyes,” and those two were making significant eyes at each other. (Also, Dany broke up with Daario [Michiel Huisman] spectacularly.)

–your fangirl heroine.


Television Tuesday :: here we are, four weeks in.

5 May

Now, usually I talk about Game of Thrones a week or two after the season starts, and then again when it’s over.  You might be wondering why I’m waiting so long to do it this year.  Well, I said to myself, “I’m going to write about Game of Thrones once the Sand Snakes have arrived.”

This took… four episodes.

And mind, we got barely a taste of them.  But there they were.  I’m fairly sure that show!Tyene (Rosabell Laurenti Sellers) is going to be… essentially a creature of B&W’s own invention, which sucks because book!Tyene is my favorite (she’s got that cadence I gravitate toward) but I could be proved wrong, I don’t know.  She’s cute, though.  So far though, Nymeria (Jessica Henwick) and Obara (Keisha Castle-Hughes) seem true enough to book.  Obara’s monologue was pleasingly familiar, and they both have their proper weapons.

On the subject of monologues, I will say that that has been one of the things about the season so far that I’ve generally liked.  It’s as if B&W were like “oh, we’re five seasons in, better shoehorn in as much exposition as we can really really fast so we fill the show-watchers in on things they’re going to need to know that we’ve skipped in previous seasons.”  Or conversations-that-are-basically-monologues.  There have been multiple monologues per episode, the likes of which are more akin to Jaime in the baths in season three than anything else.  To wit, a list of veritable monologuers, in no particular order and doubtless incomplete:

  • Mance (Ciaran Hinds)
  • Melisandre (Carice van Houten)
  • Stannis (Stephen Dillane)
  • Shireen (Kerry Ingram)
  • Brienne (Gwendoline Christie)
  • Podrick (Daniel Portman)
  • Barristan (Ian McElhinney)
  • Daario (Michiel Huisman)
  • Obara
  • Ellaria (Indira Varma)
  • Daenerys (Emilia Clarke)
  • Baelish (Aidan Gillen)

And that’s to say nothing of the conversational exposition.  Which has been… basically everybody, and I am not going to list it all off because it would, basically, be a list of everybody in various configurations.  I’m perfectly comfortable with this.  I would probably watch an entire show that was just lengthy expositional conversations.  Sure, it’s a little jarring to go from a roundtable about Meereneese nobles to “so, Your Grace, about your father,” but I like it.  I don’t mind it at all.

Minor plot changes (having it be not-Jaqen [Tom Wlaschiha] at the House of Black and White, for example) I’m all right with.  Major plot changes (Sansa’s [Sophie Turner] line, which has elicited reactions such as “NO NO NO NO” and “nooooo, they can’t” and “Sansa just can’t catch a break” from my people who are show-watchers; the elimination of certain key characters) have been… less well-received.  But I’m not going to talk about my rage until it’s all over and done and I have concrete details to rage about.

–your fangirl heroine.

well then

Television Tuesday :: the 2013 “no” trope/plot device list, part two

24 Dec

And although I am very much tired of it, this list does not include “manpain,” because that is such a broad category with too many examples to list, and it does not include “dead women in general,” because last week got into specific dead female character tropes and again, it’s pretty straightforward and also happens too much.

5. Invisible femslash
Which is to say, romantic relationships between women that were either explicit or heavily implied being either not shown or narratively disregarded.  As seen this year with:
True Blood, Pam (Kristin Bauer van Straten) and Tara (Rutina Wesley) making out at the end of season five with such promise and then being given exactly one offscreen sex scene and one moment of high-on-the-blood sunshine elbow sex and otherwise barely interacting in a pleasant fashion.
The Walking Dead, another Tara (Alanna Masterson) mentioning in conversation that she had been with a girl before and promptly finding Alisha (Juliana Harkavy) to be in a relationship with but to never get to do more than lay on top of a bed with before Alisha went amoral and died.
Warehouse 13, which I do not watch but I heard all about the disaster with Myka (Joanne Kelly) and HG (Jaime Murray), so I asked my friend to write some on it for me, which is posted here.

4.  Varyingly pedophilic potential Stockholm
When a male character exerts an uncomfortable amount of sway over a younger female character and all you can think is “no no no, get your hands off now!” even if his hands are never actually on her.  (They usually are, though.)  Definite undertones of (sexual or non-sexual) dubcon here, too.
True Blood, Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll) inexplicably returning to Bill (Stephen Moyer) and then dressing up like a sexy schoolgirl to kidnap for him, luring the fairy girls to his house, then getting high off of their blood when she drank it and trying to make out with him.
Game of Thrones, Sansa (Sophie Turner) and Baelish (Aidan Gillen), which is book canon but which slightly felt like they were trying to slant it toward her not having as much of an issue with it for whatever reason so that was even worse.
Boardwalk Empire, Daughter (Margot Bingham) and Narcisse (Jeffrey Wright) and their whole screwed up dynamic.

3. Oedipal undertones
When a female character expresses an uncomfortable amount of interest over a younger male character that they are related to.  Often involves abuse of an emotional or sexual sort.  (And mind, I get just as angry about abusive/creepy fathers, but I’ve noticed more abusive/creepy mothers on television lately.)
Boardwalk Empire, Gillian (Gretchen Mol) having way too much interest in getting Tommy (Brady and Connor Noon) returned to her custody in lieu of her dead son and Tommy’s dad Jimmy (Michael Pitt), who she had previously also had an Oedipal relationship with.
Sons of Anarchy, Gemma (Katey Sagal) sometimes gives off a bit of this vibe toward Jax (Charlie Hunnam) though it’s not been acted on.
American Horror Story: Coven, Alicia (Mare Winningham) quite clearly emotionally and sexually abusing her son Kyle (Evan Peters).

2.  Love triangles and/or infidelity
Exactly as it says on the box.
True Blood, mainly in the six months later flash forward that set up a potential season seven Alcide (Joe Manganiello) and Sookie (Anna Paquin) and Bill love triangle since apparently show!Sookie will never be able to let Bill go, or at least the narrative will never be able to let them go.
American Horror Story: Coven, Kyle and Zoe (Taissa Farmiga) and Madison (Emma Roberts) in their messy triad that had the potential to actually be a triad but is not.
Mad Men, Peggy (Elisabeth Moss) and her boyfriend Abe (Charlie Hofheimer) and her boss Ted (Kevin Rahm) and the reduction of her usually-engaging and often work-centered plotlines to an underachieving boy-overachieving girl-authority figure love triangle.

1. Conscious irresponsibility
Not irresponsibility insofar as doing reckless things per se, but irresponsibility as in a lack of overt responsibility for one’s actions.  Often does go hand-in-hand with manpain, actually.
True Blood, Bill at least somewhat acting like he hadn’t taken Lilith’s blood at the end of the previous season with murderous intent (Jessica asking wasn’t it a good thing that Lilith was gone, Bill agreeing that yes, probably) and never once acknowledging that the whole situation with the governor’s vamp camp was taking place because he’d said at the Authority table, “hey, let’s blow up the TruBlood factories!”
The Walking Dead, Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and the Governor (David Morrissey) and every time they spoke to each other or others saying and thinking things like “I didn’t have a choice but to do [x thing]!”
Mad Men, Don (Jon Hamm) as a total person.  Actually, most of the guys in the office at least sometimes.

–your fangirl heroine.


Television Tuesday :: 5 thoughts I had during the Game of Thrones season premiere

2 Apr

It’s been a while since I had a proper “viewing party” – I have my weekly watch ALL the things TV dates, of course, but a real-time social watching gathering hasn’t happened… well, probably since the HBO season of 2012 ended.  (As evidenced by the fact that it exists, HBO season is an important time for me.  Much joy and pain is had, people come together, there is a lot of watching/rewatching and sometimes liquor and/or baked goods.)  The Game of Thrones viewing party was accidental, really, just friends who happened to be in town for Easter and hey, let’s all watch Game of Thrones, it’ll be great!  I mixed drinks for those who wanted them, I made lemon cakes, all was well.

This is the first time that I’ve already read the book that the season is based on, as I did the first and second somewhat backward; considering that I spent my entire spring break last week reading A Feast for Crows, I am farther ahead and can therefore see things (some good most bad) foreshadowed, even.  We had to peruse the third book afterward just to clarify a couple of things for ourselves, one of my people and I, but we have decided that we are going to have to officially think of them as separate entities (not unlike how we deal with Wicked, for example: both versions are great, but they are different) just because.  This could be hard if certain things get messed up, but I’m pretty sure that even if the show was an entity unto itself with no source material, these things would make me angry were they to happen.

We have our questions.  There are things we are wondering about (some of them are change-related, we can’t help it).  There are things we have asked “what if?” about and characters whose motivations we are curious about.  I keep saying we because these are vague enough premises to apply to me and my people too, but the list I am about to make applies specifically to my opinions.  Because this is, as it says, a list of some of my thoughts (idle or otherwise) during the season premiere.  I had considered liveblogging it, but I wanted to be watching with full attention.  Maybe I’ll liveblog rewatches someday, who knows.

Anyway.  The list.

5. Gods, but I have missed having everyone’s accents in my ears.
I have mentioned before that I am an accent nerd/snob/connoisseur/whatever, yes.  And it’s not like you can’t hear good varieties of British Isles accents many places, but there are certain accents on this show about which I am exceptionally shallow in my obsession.  Rose Leslie’s, for example.  The second she started talking, my train of thought derailed happily.

4. Ros (Esmé Bianco) and Shae (Sibel Kekilli).  Period.
Theirs was a tiny scene in the background of another, more important and plot-related, scene.  But the second that Baelish (Aidan Gillen) and Ros walked onto the dock, I found myself thinking “oh, oh, are Ros and Shae going to have a conversation?” and I was surprised by how excited I was about the prospect.  I can’t figure out if/how they are changing Shae’s ultimate role, though I’ve read Sophie Turner saying the “friend” word in reference to Shae and Sansa; maybe that is just for right now, and I really did enjoy the scene with them (I will not talk about it much right now because there is already brilliant meta about it on tumblr and I would just be repeating them), but – no, I will not speculate, because I am going to try to let it happen just a bit more before I judge.  My Shae feelings became a lot more confusing after reading A Storm of Swords, but I am cautiously interested in the purpose Shae was serving in this episode.  (I can think of at least four different implications/scenarios just off the top of my head, but no speculation.  Not here.)  And while I know that a lot of people are questionfaced about Ros, I have said before and will say again that I am irrationally fond of her.  I’m really not sure what this whole situation is with her being Baelish’s… personal secretary…?  That said, I think I like it.  Probably.  And all of that said, I did not realize until it happened how much I have wanted a Ros and Shae interaction.

3. I know I’m not speculating, but wow, details about Robb (Richard Madden).
The ones that my person and I can’t stop discussing are ones that are going to change because of the differences between Robb/Talisa (Oona Chaplin) in the show and Robb/Jeyne in the books.  This is an example of things we thought about largely because of later-discovered book-timeline revelations.  Also, the business with Cat (Michelle Fairley) is… well, other people are talking about it more articulately.  But it is a strangeness.

2. Good grief, Margaery (Natalie Dormer)!
There is a fair amount of Margaery in the books, but the thing about the books is that since everything is filtered through one character or another’s perspectives, it’s hard to get a good true read of some characters.  Margaery is one of those characters (mind you, I’ve always liked her anyway, but).  That said, I very much enjoyed the Margaery who was gracing the screen in this episode, and I definitely rank the potential Margaery-and-Sansa dynamic in my Top 3 Things I Want list.  It is a positive “good grief” up there, because Margaery is great.

1. Obviously, Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) feelings.  There is no more articulate way to put it.
I mean, I have feelings about… just about all of the women characters, really (and a couple of the guys).  But I am pretty much “Dany feelings girl” amongst my people, so here, let me get into some of them.

  • We are already deep, deep into the ridiculous costume meta/mental diagramming.  It is unavoidable now.
  • The, uhm, tiny round box of scorpion… well, thank you for accidentally feeding an eight-year-old in-joke, HBO.  (A disgruntled telemarketer once threatened to send my mother a box of scorpions in the mail because she didn’t want to partake of his product.  Instead of being freaked out by this, she chose to come home, share it with me and a couple of my friends, and have a good laugh at what a ridiculous statement it was.  So.)
  • Jorah (Iain Glen), I understand that your statement about the Dothraki only following the strong reflects Dothraki culture’s notions of strength, Westerosi culture’s notions of strength, and probably overlying sociocultural notions of strength, but it still set me off.  (I think I must have made a face and/or disgruntled noise, because one of my people chuckled at me; as we were mid-episode, my only response is “no, I’m not talking right now,” but I had a much more elaborate emotional reaction than the one I am currently abbreviating here afterward.)
  • Dany, darling, I love it when you are sassy.  If someone asked me to make a list of things (defined as literally anything) that were my favorite right now, I would put “Game of Thrones/Song of Ice and Fire women being sassy” right at the top of that list.

–your fangirl heroine.

how can things still be this gross

Spoiler Alert Saturday :: my thoughts on The Dark Knight Rises

22 Jul

This is one of those movies that I actually loathe reviewing.  Occasionally, there are movies I fall in love with, and writing howevermany words on those is easy.  Sometimes movies make me think sarcastic thoughts, and it’s easy to write about that.  Sometimes I flat think a movie is ridiculous, and that’s easy to discuss.  It’s the movies I see that I really do like and appreciate as being a very good film but don’t feel any particular feelings about that I have the hardest time with talking about.

I liked this movie.  The Dark Knight Rises is a very, very good movie.  Technically speaking, it’s well-made, everyone’s performances were very good.  Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman and Gary Oldman did what they had to do, Tom Hardy was all menacing and growly, Christian Bale was solid as usual in the Batman role, I’ll discuss the others in a second.  I mean, I giggle sometimes when he growls, but that’s nothing new.  The growling is always funny.

So I guess I’ll list some idle thoughts, ones that are snarkier than my overall opinion of the film.  A lot of people have written better actual reviews of this movie, making good points.  Some people are crying Oscar; I don’t know if it would win, I rather doubt it, but a nomination wouldn’t surprise me.  It’s got the requisite darkness.

Idle thoughts:

  • O-okay, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, buddy.  I’m still cranky with you for the “pretty women aren’t usually funny” comment, which has also been discussed online.  I’d like to imagine you’ve learned from your mistake, though; I know some people say stupid and symptomatic but not dangerous stuff sometimes, cringeworthy stuff, but they learn from it sometimes.  Still, good performance.  Good sweater(vest)s.
  • Marion Cotillard.  I like your face, and I admit, that not knowing the comics really at all, I wasn’t entirely seeing that coming?  I’m still making heads or tails of how they actually played it out, but at least it kept me from my worst fear of all, which was the Miranda character being used as the damsel figure.
  • There are still… certain strangenesses in overall casting in this franchise, ones that are symptomatic of strangenesses in casting, period, but I can’t blame the actors for that.
  • Juno Temple, why were you there?  I mean, I understand that she was Selina Kyle’s… something.  Buddy/accomplice/apprentice/little street sister/what?  Characters like that are written only to serve the purpose of moving something else forward or creating background, which bums me out a little bit because I always get curious about them, but.
  • AAAND let’s talk about Anne Hathaway.  Really the only reason I ever broke out grinning during this film.  Who said you couldn’t play Catwoman, darling?  Because they were wrong.  I was also terrified that they were going to modern Irene Adler Selina-who-is-Catwoman.  They could have done it many times.  They didn’t quite, though I could have done without the ending looks of angst and longing and the very last of her, but that’s a plot issue.  I enjoyed the performance a lot, I really did, though now come to think of it, I could have done with a little more exposition sometime, not in the “justifying my actions” way but just in the “additional character depth” way.  But still, very well done.
  • Hello, surprise momentary Aidan Gillen.  Hello, surprise momentary Jillian Armenante.
  • One of these days, when I’m not avoiding actual spoilers as much out of manners, remind me to write at least a long paragraph entitled “How the same basic plot device can be played two different enough ways to make me feel feelings one of the ways and make me shrug the other way.”

But yes.  I did like it, it was a well-crafted movie.

–your fangirl heroine.