George R.R. Martin

If “R + L = J” Blew Your Mind, Just Watch These Insane ‘Game of Thrones’ Conspiracy Theory Videos

In the past couple of weeks, n00bs who haven’t been reading A Song of Ice and Fire (and talking about it on Internet forums) since 1997 took notice of a certain fan theory called “R+L=J.” Its thesis — that Jon Snow is actually Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen’s kid, not Ned Stark’s — is so well-supported that the theory’s about as controversial as saying Tyrion’s your favorite character. But as we pointed out a few months ago, “R + L = J” is just a tip of the speculative iceberg. An iceberg that’s also home to YouTube user Preston Jacobs, whose theories are among the most comprehensive I’ve seen to date. They’re also completely addictive, and also a little bit batshit. … Read More

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Why Can’t We Let a ‘Game of Thrones’ Actress Move Past Her History in Porn?

When I was at a bar a couple of Sundays ago, I got to talking with a guy in front of me in the bathroom line. I don’t remember how we got on the subject — perhaps a little Game of Thrones versus Mad Men talk, maybe I joked about boobs and “sexposition” and fantasy — but he told me, “Game of Thrones gives a second chance to former porn stars.” Specifically, he mentioned that German actress Sibel Kekilli, who plays Shae, had been in porn. … Read More

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10 Charming Fan Letters From Cultural Icons

Last night, as you’re well aware, the fourth season of Game of Thrones came to a close, and everyone went bananas. And perhaps, somewhere, some future literary superstar penned a fan letter to George R.R. Martin, telling him what an inspiration his work is. It’s not too much of a stretch — presumably in preparation for the finale, iO9 dug up that great fan letter that young Master Martin wrote to Marvel’s Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, raving over the greatness of a recent Fantastic Four issue. Such a missive is a blast to read now; it’s also but one example of the fine tradition of superstars who reveal themselves (either before their own fame or after it) to be super-fans. … Read More

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‘Game of Thrones’ Season 4 Finale Recap: “The Children”

Two major character deaths anchor “The Children,” and they read like a sick version of “Would You Rather?” As in: would you rather die staring down an extremely slow fight to the death between blood loss and infection, begging for your preteen surrogate child to kill you as she walks away? Or would you rather die at the hands of your actual child, ending a long career of military and political victories on the toilet? Either way, the children get their revenge. … Read More

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‘Game of Thrones’ Season 4 Episode 9 Recap: “The Watchers on the Wall”

Towards the beginning of “The Watchers on the Wall,” Sam Tarly distracts himself from the approaching horde of wildlings by picking apart the vow that gives the episode its title. Technically, he equivocates, the brothers of the Night’s Watch don’t have to stay celibate. They’re just not supposed to marry or have kids, and all the rest is “up to interpretation.” When six brothers are facing down a giant mere hours later, however, there’s no interpreting or qualifying the vow when it’s helping them stand up to a twenty-foot juggernaut. To put it in Maester Aemon’s terms, nothing gives previously empty words significance like the prospect of imminent death. … Read More

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‘Game of Thrones’ Season 4, Episode 8 Recap: “The Mountain and the Viper”

One of this season’s most-hyped subplots—introduced, as a matter of fact, in the premiere—has been the maturation and corruption of Arya Stark. Under the influence of the Hound, Arya’s previously latent killer instincts are set free, and we’ve watched her slowly absorb Sandor’s even more cavalier attitude towards other human beings’ right to live. She’s even received the treatment that’s made this Era of the Antihero so infamous: Game of Thrones invites us to cheer on a preteen as she acquires a taste for blood, then ask ourselves what that enthusiasm says about us as an audience. Fantastic as Arya’s development this season has been, though, is it possible we’ve been focusing on the wrong Stark sister? … Read More

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Robin Thicke is Still Awful: Links You Need to See

Today, the things we think we know and hold sacred are getting flipped on their head. For some people and cultural institutions, this for the better. For others…not lookin’ so great! … Read More

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‘Game of Thrones’ Season 4 Episode 6 Recap: “The Laws of Gods and Men”

“Judicial proceedings” sounds like a bone-dry theme for an episode, doesn’t it? There are three of them in a single hour this week, which only makes sense; when you get right down to it, Game of Thrones is a show about governance, and for every hour of Jon Snow sword fighting and murder via Hodor possession, the show has to compensate with an hour of sausage-making. Except the trial that caps off “The Laws of Gods and Men” is among the most emotional scenes in this series’ thirty-six hours of airtime, and while the Stannis and Dany scenes may pale in comparison, they’re important riffs on that core theme of what it takes to run a country.  … Read More

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The 10 Most Horrible Mothers in Fiction

We love moms. We love our moms, and we love your mom. But fictional moms that we’re supposed to hate? We love them, too, in a strange and special way. And with Mother’s Day coming up this weekend, we got to thinking about the absolute worst literary moms that we can think of. They’re too cruel, don’t pay attention, pay too much attention, or, in some cases, harbor murderous intentions. … Read More

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