Showing posts with label survival. Show all posts
Showing posts with label survival. Show all posts

A Dance with Dragons

Author: Anonymous / Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,

In light of the fact that the school year is coming to a close and that HBO's Game of Thrones is winding down (*sigh*), I've decided to pick up where I left off from last year.

I have been reading A Dance with Dragons.

And BOY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Is it ever a meaty read!

Action! Adventure! Betrayal! Surprise journeys! Power! Crime! Intrigue!

And ONE VERY BIG glitch that I did not see coming.

New characters. Shady pasts. Possible hope for a better future.

A lost, forgotten member of a House.

And that's all I'm going to say right now.

Happy reading to me! :)

"M" is for Margaery Tyrell

Author: Anonymous / Labels: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Here is one of my favourite female characters: Margaery Tyrell. The lovely Natalie Dormer portrays her in HBO's Game of Thrones.

Margaery is the only daughter from House Tyrell. She has three older brothers - Willas, Lord Garlan and Ser Loras. As a female, she is destined to marry into a great house and unite two families, securing wealth, political ties and forging new alliances.

In A Clash of Kings, we see that Margaery Tyrell has married Renly Baratheon and by rights, has become his Queen. We all know that Loras and Renly are having a secret relationship. This does not bother Margaery, as she has married her King, knowing what she was getting into and what was expected of her in this political arrangement.

For a female in Westeros, she is very well educated and pretty shrewd. I like to think that she gets that blunt and shrewd streak from her grandmother, Lady Olenna Redwyne. Margaery possesses looks and wit and understands the necessity of deception, especially to those in the court. What would've been a strategic marriage soon comes undone, as Renly is murdered by his brother and the red priestess from Asshai.

Margaery understands that being in the right position at the right time means that unrivalled power could be in her grasp. We see her pleading her case to King Joffrey, that she has become enamored of him and all his feats. Just watching Natalie Dormer state her intentions to Joffrey with that seductive twinkle in her eye and her regal wardrobe, well Joffrey pretty much likes what he sees and discards Sansa Stark in favour of Lady Margaery Tyrell.

Season III looks pretty exciting and I cannot wait to see how Margaery's character begins to show some real teeth and some edge. Margaery is savvy enough to know that she wants to be aligned with the most powerful man in Westeros, because it means prestige for her family and a secure position for her in court and for any future heirs. I don't think she will buckle under Joffrey the way Sansa did.

Perhaps she will use her sultry wiles on Joffrey to get what she wants. I say whatever she needs to do to get ahead, do it. The men of Westeros never flinch at having to wage weapons, threats and seize opportunities, when presented.

So if a woman chooses to make love instead of war to obtain power, it doesn't make her weaker. Pen is mightier than the sword. No man alive can withstand the alluring, tantalizing siren call from a woman. Especially Natalie Dormer's Margaery Tyrell. Watch her in the Tudors. Then you'll know exactly what I mean.

The Prince of Winterfell

Author: Anonymous / Labels: , , ,

Lots of action in this episode. Oh boy, where to start. Tywin is bent on defeating Robb. Cersei has returned to her normal, hateful self and fighting once again with Tyrion. She thinks she is so above playing the Game of Thrones, that she has captured and currently torturing Shae. Tyrion is quick not to betray his feelings but realizes Cersei has captured the wrong woman. He promises to help Roz. I hope he does, as she looked to be in terrible condition. Tyrion and Bronn are trying to come up with a defence strategy to combat Stannis.  Stannis is sailing towards Kings Landing with an enormous fleet.

Joffrey is being his usual insufferable self. Varys has discovered that Danyerys Targaryen is alive....with three dragons in tow. The people in the North hate Theon Greyjoy with good reason. He hung the bodies of the two Stark children and displayed them in the front of the castle. They are would think. Maester Luwin is not convinced, after seeing a fleeting glimpse of Osha. Robb is conflicted, his mother has handed over the Kingslayer to Brienne. His supposed best friend, Theon, has betrayed him by raizing the castle of Winterfell. His sister is held hostage in Kings Landing and his brothers are captive while Theon is still at Winterfell. To top it off, he has to honour a betrothal contract with Walder Frey, marrying one of his youngest daughters, in order to keep peace and friendly relations with the Freys and Starks for political reasons. Easier said then done, especially when he is enamoured of Talisa Migear, who is a nurse and healer, helping out in his camp.

Arya names her final name to Jaqen and he is not pleased with her choice. Arya is a tough, scrappy little fighter who is coming into her own power. On condition that she un-names Jaqen, she wants her freedom to escape from Harrenhal. And as for Jon Snow, well, he is not in a position to do anything now. Ygritte has turned him over to the Lord of Bones and the Halfhand has been captured. They are off to meet the mysterious Mance Rayder. Next week is the EPIC episode - Blackwater Bay and the big guy himself, George R R, wrote this one himself.

I am TOTALLY looking forward to this one! Valar Morghulis!

The Women of Westeros

Author: Anonymous / Labels: , ,

For those that have read the books and have watched the series, perhaps you've noticed that there are several types of women portrayed: survivor, schemer, prostitute, victim, innocent child or ex-patriot.

Make no mistake: it's a man's world in Game of Thrones. Women are at the mercy of men: noble ladies are dependent on their husbands for safety, their lives endangered by war, the threat of being kidnapped or raped, and the chances of suffering death during childbirth are high. It's a grim, nasty world out there. Women have to do what needs to be done in order to get ahead. Sometimes, that means doing things that are considered "dirty" or "unsavoury."

Catelyn Stark: survivor. She's had five children with her late husband, Eddard Stark. She's the mother of a King (Robb); she's the lady of Winterfell and acts as a counsellor to her son, Robb. It's clear that she loves her children. However, because she's acted as parlay for her son - in speaking to the late King Renly - she has been absent from Winterfell and away from her two youngest sons, Bran and Rickon. She hails from Riverrun, and was part of the Tully clan, before she married Eddard. She had a loving marriage - but the only thorn in her side was Jon Snow, the child that Eddard allegedly fathered outside of their marriage. She lives by her Tully code: "Family, Duty, Honour."

Danyerys Targaryen: survivor and ex-patriot. Her debut in the world was uneventful. As a baby, she was spirited away from Dragonstone, along with her brother Visyers, in order to survive. She was pimped out by her brother and married off to Khal Drogo, a brutal and savage warlord of the Dorthraki tribe. However, her adaptation of their culture and language only endeared her to her husband and their people. Unfortunately, she had a stillborn child and was forced to smother her husband, when he was in a vegetative state. Alone, abandoned by the people, she had no choice but to wander the Red Waste until her tiny tribe came upon Qarth. She's had to be strong for her people, as a good leader must lead by example. She has three 'children' - her three dragons. Once they grow, she will be a force to reckon with.

Cersei Lannister Baratheon: schemer and prostitute. She is constantly plotting to overthrow anyone who gets in her way. Cersei does not trust anyone who isn't a Lannister. Her frustration and anger stems from the fact that she was born a twin, a female and that her role is lessened to that of a princess and she is defined by her gender. She has an unholy relationship with her twin brother and out of it she bore three children. Through incest, those children were produced. Her late husband, Robert Baratheon, did not know or suspect that his three children were not his. Cersei is ruthless and power hungry. She abuses her power. The worst thing this woman ever did was have an incestual relationship with her twin brother Jaime, put her son Joffrey on the throne and stand aside while Eddard Stark was being executed. She stops at nothing to get what she wants and that also includes sleeping with her cousin, Lancel and a few other bannermen to try and get her way. One person who sees through her is Tyrion, her younger brother. Tyrion doesn't accept her lies and calls her on it. She hates Tyrion, because he knows all of her depraved, disgusting secrets.

Myrcella Baratheon: innocent child. Myrcella has a sweet dispostion. It's almost hard to believe that her mother is that monster, Cersei Lannister. She is quiet, dutiful and lives at King's Landing with her mother, uncle and brothers. She is shipped off to Dorne, to solidify a marriage betrothal arranged by her uncle, Tyrion Lannister. Tyrion arranged the match because he was savvy enough to know that they would gain the support of the Martells of Dorne, a rich family, while at the same time, making sure his only niece was safe and out of the rotten environment that King's Landing has become.

Sansa Stark: victim and survivor. Unfortunately, Sansa is a young teenage girl with dreams of courtly love and life. She was raised to be very ignorant: she is trained in the finer arts of needlework and history lessons, court life and chatelaine training to be a dutiful daughter and wife. She used to have fanciful notions of court life - she would be married to Joffrey and have little princes and princesses. Once her father was murdered, se began to see what her life was like in King's Landing for what it really was: she was a hostage.  Before her father died, she caught glimpses of Joffrey's immature and spoiled nature. After Joffrey is placed on the throne, she is under constant threat and attack and has no choice but to acquiese to Joffrey's insufferable tantrums. She becomes numb with duty: she's almost robotic in her nature, declaring she still loves Joffrey and is loyal to him. Look deeper: she's surrounded by enemies (except Tyrion) and she has to do what needs to be done in order to live another day.

Arya Stark: survivor and schemer. Arya is feisty, spunky and fiery. She challenges the norms of her day and dislikes her finer lessons. She embraces her fencing and sword lessons with Syrio Forel. She is quick to size up a situation, especially around her father or brothers. She has a keen sense of intellect, for a girl so young. She is a teenager but what she lacks in size, she makes up for in attitude. Arya held her late father, Eddard Stark, in high esteem and yet, she understood that it was his honour that ended up getting him killed. She buries her fear and replaces it with a searing hot need for revenge. When her father was killed, she was smuggled out of King's Landing for safety from Yoren. On her way to the Wall, she disguised herself as a boy, knowing that it was safer to do so and that nobody would recognize her. With her fiery attitude and sword, Needle, she was quick to befriend Gendry (who just happens to be the late King Robert's illegitimate son and true heir). She begins to formulate a list of who she wants revenge on. She faced her death on many occasions and was able to prevent it. She ends up in Harrenhal, of all places, as Tywin Lannister's cupbearer. She has to be careful the way she comports herself around everyone. As sly as she is, Tywin sees through her act but she is smart enough never to reveal the simple fact that she is a Stark. They come to enjoy each other's company. Tywin likes this little girl with the steely grit in her eyes and she, in turn, likes the fact that he has many conversations - with her and his men - to which she can tuck that information and save it for a rainy day. Valar Morghulis!

Shae: prostitute and survivor. We don't know much about her history, but we know she is foreign. She becomes Tyrion's secret paramour and goes along with him to King's Landing, once Tyrion is proclaimed Hand of the King. She used to be a prostitute but becomes Sansa Stark's handmaiden. She does not trust anyone and advises Sansa to do the same thing, as it is better not to trust anyone, that way you're not disappointed or betrayed.

Roz: prostitute and survivor. The first time we meet Roz, she is with Tyrion. She is a simple country wench, a prostitute with a keen sense for sizing people up. Once she moves to King's Landing, she becomes elevated: she moves up to being the madam, helping out Littlefinger in one of his many brothels. Unfortunately for Roz, she may have 'moved up in the world' in one way, but has been witness to many brutal acts...issued by King Joffrey.

Brienne of Tarth: a new character in a Clash of Kings, Brienne is a knight and loyal subject. She is a survivor and in a sense, an ex-patriot. She witnessed the death of the late King Renly and was accused of his murder, even though she was in love with him and his most loyal subject. Due to her size and stature, she fights with great skill and strength. She is not comfortable being viewed as a genteel lady, but likes the idea of fighting for honour. She becomes Catelyn Stark's personal knight.

Margaery Tyrell: a high born lady that we are introduced to in a Clash of Kings, Margaery is married to King Renly for political reasons. She is a survivor and a schemer. Margaery is highly skilled and tutored for court life. She is beautiful but beyond her looks, she has a shrewd intelligence that will be sharply honed. She is highly influenced by her grandmother. She will become more of a power player in this season and in A Storm of Swords.

Osha: survivor. Osha was taken captive and placed under guard at Winterfell. She ends up helping Bran and Hodor and befriends the both of them. She tricks Theon Greyjoy and seduces him, leaving him in the night, in order to flee under the cover of darkness. She helps Bran and Rickon escape with Hodor and the boys' direwolves.

Ygritte: a wildling and free woman, she is truly a survivor, for she's lived beyond the wall. Fiery in temprament, she's skilled in fighting. She also happens to catch the eye of Jon Snow. She certainly appreciates what she sees in him. And of course, we know he has taken a vow of chastity in order to become a Man of the Night's Watch. The sparks between the two of them are evident. A tale as old as time, it's like watching Adam and Eve. In a word: temptation!


Author: Anonymous / Labels: , , , , , , , , ,

The episode "The Old Gods and the New" had a distinct theme throughout: what one must do in order to survive in the world of Westeros. Robb - wants to head back north to Winterfell to avenge Ser Rodrick's death and take care of Theon Greyjoy.

Brandon - desires to save the people of Winterfell but not wanting any harm coming to them.

Theon - still trying to prove what a man he is to everyone around him - often - with fatal results.

Osha - doing what it takes to survive in order to escape.

Arya - trying to be as stealthy as she can in order to gain inside information while using magic to get rid of her enemies.

Sansa - who comes to the realization that the world is not all fairy tales and perfect romances.

Tyrion - who is desperately trying to prevent open war and rebellion while at the same time trying to outmanouevre his cunning sister, Cersei AND trying very hard not to beat the living tar out of his stupid nephew, Joffrey.

Daneyers - trying to claim back the Iron Throne from a world away, with no ships, no armies and worst of all - no dragons (they've been abducted).

A New Generation of GoT Fans

Author: Anonymous / Labels: , , , , , , , , , , ,

It just occurred to me: George R. R. Martin wrote the first three books of "A Song of Fire and Ice" in the late 1990's and early 2000s. Which means that when book number four and five came out, people began to flock to those ones just as quick! Of course, with HBO creating and producing the hit series "Game of Thrones" in April 2011 and 2012, the audience for his literary works has now doubled, or perhaps tripled. I am a fan, no doubt.

Soon, there will be a new member in my family, a nephew (who is due anyday now) and you know what that means, don't you? I'm going to have to purchase his first Game of Thrones t-shirt, lunchbox, bottle, etc. When I was little, both my older brothers and I were major "Star Wars" fans. We had the bedsheets, the toys, the lego and the lunchboxes. Three cheers for "Star Wars" & "Game of Thrones!" May the fans carry on all the funny and silly traditions that go along with popular films and book series!