Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones season 4 posterSeason 4 Premiere Date: April 6, 2014

Executive Producers: David Benioff, D.B. Weiss

Written by: George R.R. Martin

Starring: Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, Kit Harrington

Synopsis:

The War of the Five Kings is drawing to a close, but new intrigues and plots are in motion, and the surviving factions must contend with enemies not only outside their ranks, but within.

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Game of Thrones spoilers: season 4, episode 6

“But now the rains weep o’er his hall,with no one there to hear.” It was quite the eventful week on Game of Thrones, so let’s talk some spoilers. But first, some ground rules for our spoilers discussion. Rule #1: if you don’t want to be spoiled with book knowledge, wild speculation, unfettered access to wikis and message boards and other guesswork informed by our deep analysis of George R.R. Martin’s psyche, you may want to stop reading. No really, stop here where it’s safe. Rule #2: Always choose trial by combat.

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Game of Thrones: The Laws of Gods and Men

This review includes a show-only discussion of Game of Thrones through season four, episode six, “The Laws of Gods and Men.” No book spoilers in the comments — we’ll have another thread for that. Beyond that, please feel free to discuss.  You have to hand it to the writers of Game of Thrones — most notably this week’s episode scribe Bryan Cogman, who serves as the show’s story editor — they have done a masterful job of throwing three seasons of working formula out the window and delivered a sneaky, slithery, brilliantly gut-punchy fourth season. If season four has accomplished any one thing by this, its sixth episode, it has been limiting the waiting game. It’s not about one big ninth episode this year. Each frame of season four has given the audience some pause, and a reason to discuss at length. This week is no exception.

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Emilia Clarke in Game of Thrones

This Game of Thrones review contains information about events through season 4, episode 5, “First of His Name.” It contains spoilers up to including that episode, but no further. For book readers, please tune into our spoiler discussion on Monday. Long may he reign, indeed. For a moment, it’s easy to get lost in the idea of a gentle King Tommen and the cute crush he has on Lady Margaery. But as things go in the wild world of Westeros, something much darker is at play. In “First of His Name,” the show places focus on the idea of people understanding and accepting the roles they are meant to play. From Queen Cersei inviting Margaery to marry her younger son to events well beyond The Wall, this week’s episode was all about making choices for the greater good. Or at least the greater good as these characters understand it.

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Tyrion in Oathbreaker

Even after writing 1,200 feverishly-typed words last night in my Game of Thrones recap, there is still more to say. In this instance, I’ve taken a second long look at this week’s episode “Oathkeeper” and decided that I need to speak to my fellow book readers for a moment. Why? Because these are thoughts I need to share with the world and because there’s so much in last night’s episode that is intriguing beyond what we know from the books that it feels like the right time to get spoilery. That said, consider this your very last warning. If you continue reading beyond this point you will be subjected to knowledge of all books in the A Song of Ice and Fire series, all aired episodes of Game of Thrones and plenty of wild speculation mixed with educated guesses about what is going to happen next.

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Game of Thrones Golden Hand

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. There will be a quiz later. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

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Game of Thrones: Jaime Lannister

This review includes spoilers for all Game of Thrones episodes that have aired, including season four, episode four, “Oathkeeper.” Do not read any further until you’ve watched the episode. Don’t worry, we’ll wait… Up to this point, the most fresh and original elements of the adaptation of A Song of Ice and Fire into the show Game of Thrones have made it more horrible. Adding unborn baby murder and turning mostly normal sex into rape scenes seem to be the limits of the chances show creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss were willing to take. That is until tonight. In this fourth episode of season four, the show went well off-book and took some hard left turns, leaving mouths agape of book readers and neophytes alike.

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Game of Thrones: Breaker of Chains

This recap includes spoilers up to and including season four, episode three, “Breaker of Chains.” Watch the episode first, then come back. We’re not going to tell you again. Last week’s episode of Game of Thrones is getting plenty of attention for its final moments — a nice little shocker that we hope you were able to enjoy unspoiled — but it worked best because of simplicity. The writers (in this case George R.R. Martin himself) dedicated about half the episode to The Purple Wedding, allowing the boy king to become his worst self right before his curtain call. It delivered a maximum amount of emotional punch on a death that was already going to be a big one. This week we come sliding back down from the high and are thrust immediately into the most dense episode of the season thus far. There are plenty of pieces to pick up, plenty to move around and plenty of storylines to join already in progress toward more bloodshed…

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Game of Thrones Frozen Mash-Up

With the grand tradition of wasting time on a Friday (your job’s not that important), and the grand tradition of blending two popular things together, it’s unsurprising that there are two Game of Thrones/Frozen mash-ups competing for pre-weekend internet dominance. It’s also surprising that we haven’t mashed up those two grand traditions more often. They seem made for one another. The question now is which Game of Thrones parody video will win the day. In this corner, we’ve got Daenerys, Jon Snow and (ahem) Mad King Joffrey belting out “Let It Go” as a means to assert their dominance over Westeros. In the other corner, we’ve got the Cast of Kings crew using new “Let It Go” lyrics to lovingly mock the show (and the amount of beards on it). Who’s parody sheen will reign supreme? Watch them both for yourself:

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Game of Thrones: Joffrey

This recap includes spoilers up to and including season four, episode two, “The Lion and a Rose.” Watch the episode first, then come back. We’re not going to tell you again. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: this episode changes everything. In past seasons, the single episode written by author George R.R. Martin has always been one of the pivot points of the show. He penned the “Blackwater” episode in season two (source of a monumental battle) and “The Bear and the Maiden Fair” (an episode that was packed with foreshadowing). For his season four work, he’s given us a royal wedding and perhaps the show’s most triumphant death. But before we get to the big nay, huge moment at the end of “The Lion and the Rose,” there is so much else to talk about. Because so much happens all over Westeros before the wedding.

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Game of Thrones - Iron Throne

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. There will be a quiz later. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

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Game of Thrones: Season Four, Episode 1

As it has done in previous seasons, Game of Thrones has used its first hour of the year to give us plenty to talk about. Because even after so many of the characters we love were killed off at the end of last season, there are still plenty of people with whom we need to catch up. The other primary goal of episode one — a goal it accomplishes swimmingly thanks to the ever-sharp writing of showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss — is introducing season four’s new faces. As Westeros takes a deep breath and begins to pick up the pieces left by The Red Wedding, the world of its fans lets out a long sigh of relief. It’s good to have Game of Thrones back on our TV screens, even better to have it back in top form.

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Ned at Baelor in Game of Thrones

So many people have died on Game of Thrones that keeping track of them is quite the undertaking. It’s such a pervasive element of the show (and the books upon which the show is based) that we’ve even resorted to gambling about when characters will die while blogging previous seasons. And with the upcoming fourth season’s tagline of “All Men Must Die,” the marketeers as HBO are assuring us that these next 10 hours of thrones will be the bloodiest and most unpredictable yet. Which is all the reason we need to take a pause and remember fondly those who have died. HBO did this with their Beautiful Death art project, which wraps up this weekend just in time for the season 4 premiere. We are doing it with our own Oscar ceremony style In Memoriam tribute, which can be seen below. But first, we’d like to take a moment to rank the five most important deaths — those that had the greatest to do with moving the show’s narrative forward.

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Robb Stark and Talisa in Game of Thrones

What happens after The Red Wedding? With Game of Thrones back for its fourth season on Sunday, we’re delivering a singularly-dedicated episode where A Cast of Kings co-host Joanna Robinson and Broken Projector fan favorite Neil Miller join us for a spoiler-less look at what lies ahead (besides Winter). Neil has already seen the first three episodes and reviewed the spirit of the season, and we’re up on all the books, so we follow up the safe portion with a segment focused on spoilers that might shock and amaze virgin viewers. Something for everyone! Except people who’ve never seen the show or read the books. Sorry about that. You should follow Joanna (@jowrotethis), Neil (@rejects), the show (@brokenprojector), Geoff (@drgmlatulippe) and Scott (@scottmbeggs) on Twitter for more on a daily basis. Please review us on iTunes Download Episode #54 Directly Or subscribe Through iTunes

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Danaerys in Game of Thrones season 4

When we last left Westeros, it was with a heavy heart, was it not? Fresh off the horror of The Red Wedding, fans of HBO’s Game of Thrones were left with the sinking feeling that a tectonic shift was underway in the narrative landscape built and then often destroyed by author George R.R. Martin. Even those who had read Martin’s books, fully prepared for the events, were shaken by the imagery of watching several beloved characters die violently and unexpectedly. In that moment, the battle for power in Westeros was changed in a manner so irreparable that no matter how much justice is delivered upon those who orchestrated the story’s bloodiest moments, it may never be enough. But that still won’t stop the show from trying. In season four, with this world-altering massacre behind it, Game of Thrones sets an accelerated course toward vicious revenge. If the events of season three took place to show us that no one is safe, season four has arrived just in time to hammer the sentiment home.

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Game of Thrones art

Of course there are spoilers here. How could we even begin talking about the roadmap of Game of Thrones and its first three seasons without talking through some spoilers? It could be like therapy, though. Perhaps we engage in longform conversation over the legacies of those we lost in The War of the Five Kings. We could perhaps even spend an entire 1000+ word article on the aftereffects of The Red Wedding. But let’s face it, we’ve got all of season four to work out those emotions, just as the denizens of Westeros have all of season four to work out their revenge schemes. As we sit on the precipice of another season of Game of Thrones, it’s important to look back at how far we’ve come since episode one, when Ned Stark taught his children about the justice of the world. A justice many of his children — bastard, borrowed or otherwise — would never find before being struck with tragedy. We could spend word upon word walking through just how tortured this Stark clan is, but we don’t have to. The good news is that the Internet is doing the work for us. So let’s watch some video.

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The Prestige Movie

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. There will be a quiz later. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

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Muppets Most Wanted

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. There will be a quiz later. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

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Game of Thrones: dragon

It’s being billed as the “final” Game of Thrones trailer before season four sets off into a night that’s dark and full of terrors, and boy does this one have some game. Featuring the song “Devil Inside” by London Grammar, this new trailer shows us a bit more of what we can expect in the coming frame. There is plenty of talk about the payment of debts, further clearing up the fact that season four has revenge to offer. From the season’s tagline “All Men Must Die” to just about every trailer talking about some form of revenge, it’s easy to see that season four is about to deliver some much needed payback in Westeros. Or it’s all a ruse and George R.R. Martin’s creation will continue killing everyone you love. It could still go either way.

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TV Collage 2014

The agreement we make with a TV show is that we’ll spend time with it as long as its interesting, as long as we want to hang out with its characters. Beyond the one-shot that movies demand, TV shows require a thirty minute testing period or eleven hours if you like it. More if you get in deep. And who knows if your favorite show will last 10 seasons. We get devoted. But even a favorite show has the potential to lose its luster (or jump right over the shark), and we know when it happens — when to give up. Or we end up straggling along anyway, because we get devoted. So what would it take for you to give up on a favorite? What would a TV show have to do to get you to quit?

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Big dragons in Game of Thrones

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. There will be a quiz later. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

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published: 12.23.2014
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