George R.R. Martin

‘Game of Thrones’ Season 5 Episode 3 Recap: “High Sparrow”

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What does Arya Stark want? Our four main story lines this week see characters making big, ambitious moves. But as Peter “Ambition Incarnate” Baelish reminds us, every ambitious move is a gamble, and it’s not clear any of our protagonists know what it is they’re gambling. That’s especially true of Arya, who’s latched onto the Faceless Men with a ferocity that belies her ignorance of what, exactly, the Faceless Men are. Jon, Cersei, and Sansa, however, don’t seem any more cognizant of the risks they’re taking by walking straight into the lion’s den (or in Jon’s case, smugly staying in it). Some of them can’t be blamed—word of Ramsay’s sadism hasn’t even reached Littlefinger, let alone Sansa. Some of them should know better, and characteristically don’t.
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In Its Fifth Season, ‘Game of Thrones’ May Finally Surpass the Books

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There are two equal and opposite forces at work in the fifth season of Game of Thrones, which HBO will unleash on our DVRs — and now, our Apple TVs! — this Sunday. On the one hand, displacement, a state that’s arguably the status quo on a series so fond of stabbing its characters, and the viewers who identify with them, in the heart (and pushing them out windows, and exploding their heads, and killing their parents in front of them…). And on the other, stagnation, in which characters previously defined by their forward momentum find themselves stuck, in one notable case, between two angry dragons and a hard place.
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Let’s Overanalyze The New ‘Game of Thrones’ Excerpt!

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Last week, patron saint of procrastinators George R.R. Martin got all of geekdom to stop breathing down his neck by releasing a new chapter from The Winds of Winter, the sixth installment of the A Song of Ice and Fire saga. It’s not quite a release date, but since we won’t have new Game of Thrones for another five days or a full book until God knows when, it’s time for the next best thing: a gratuitous overanalysis of the new chapter and what it means for its heroine, the artist formerly known as Sansa Stark! Spoilers for the first five books of A Song of Ice and Fire, and thus the entirety of Game of Thrones, follow.
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‘Game of Thrones’ Book Proposal Shows How Much the Series Changed — for the Better

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British bookstore chain Waterstones posted and hastily deleted George R.R. Martin’s book proposal for A Game of Thrones yesterday, as sent to publisher HarperCollins in 1993. Of course the proposal is now available in perpetuity on the Internet, and the hard copy is reportedly on display at HarperCollins’ new London offices. The document has already attracted notice for how dramatically it departs from the final product as published so far; the book series supposedly still has two volumes to go, and Game of Thrones is still going strong on HBO. It’s also remarkable for how much of an improvement the changes are over Martin’s original vision for the series.

[Book and show spoilers unsurprisingly follow.]
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The 50 Sexiest Literary Villains

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In The Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy, open-mouthed, says “I’ve never heard of a beautiful witch before,” Glinda famously quips that only bad witches are ugly. But ’tis not so — or at least, there are plenty of very bad witches who are the opposite of ugly: beautiful, sexy, charming, devastatingly intelligent, or all of the above. So, in honor of J.K. Rowling’s outrage that we all love Draco so much, here’s 50 villains that we wouldn’t kick out of …Read More