Game of Thrones Season 4 (2014)

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.

- Watch the Season 4 trailer
- Follow our Blog of Thrones

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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Game of Thrones in Vanity Fair, by Annie Leibovitz

Not by us, but by someone. And we mean someone beyond the people living inside the mind of A Song of Ice and Fire author George R.R. Martin. In a sprawling feature in the upcoming issue of Vanity Fair, both Martin and the Game of Thrones executive producer team of David Benioff and D.B. Weiss talk at length about one of the most prevalent threads that plagues all of Westeros: endings. Usually the “endings” of note are those of characters we love, meeting their untimely deaths in service of honor or the quest for power. This time around, the creative team behind the books and the beloved show are talking about where and when the story itself may come to an end. The simple answer: seven or eight seasons. The how and why of it are a bit more complicated.

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300: Rise of an Empire

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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Click here to take a tour of the Game of Thrones exhibition

While it was in Austin during SXSW 2014, we had a chance to take a tour of Game of Thrones: The Exhibition. Click the image above or click here to take our private photo tour into the very real world of Westeros.

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Game of Thrones season 4 art

Valar morghulis. All men must die. If you haven’t learned this much about Game of Thrones by now, then you haven’t been paying attention. If the third season of the runaway hit HBO series has taught its audience anything, it’s that no one character is safe from the death’s cold hands. This is something that readers of the A Song of Fire and Ice book series have known for a long time. George R.R. Martin likes to kill people in the most heinous (and thankfully literary) ways. With the fourth season set to begin in just over a month, the folks at HBO want us to remember that death comes for all men, women, children, babies, direwolves, giants, and whatever the hell those White Walkers are. In addition to the season four trailer and the epic 15-minute season four preview, HBO has now released 21 new posters for the upcoming season. One main poster featuring a three-eyed raven and some pointy iconography as well as 20 character posters featuring faces new and old, all of which simply state “Valar morghulis.” Because if it wasn’t clear enough yet, this show is about death.

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Game of Thrones season 4 - Tyrion

HBO gave us 15-minutes of preview featurette and one big season four trailer, but they still haven’t given us anything to preview the upcoming season of Game of Thrones quite like what you’re about to watch. Seemingly unimpressed with the current marketing plan for the show, YouTube user LadyDogTrailers took all the existing season four footage and made this wonderfully thrilling trailer. Set to Lorde’s cover of the Tears for Fears song “Everybody Wants to Rule the World,” this trailer exhibits one thing that all previous attempts have not: that the stakes are even higher for everyone in season four.

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discs got3

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! If you see something you like, click on the title to buy it from Amazon. Game of Thrones: The Complete Third Season The naval assault against the Lannisters has failed, and that little prick Joffrey remains atop the throne. Elsewhere, Daenerys is gathering an army to join her and her trio of dragons, Robb Stark is working to mend fences and create allies, and the White Walkers are continuing their ridiculously slow journey towards civilization. I’ve never read the novels, and I can’t imagine doing so without photos so I can recognize who’s who in the enormous list of characters, but this is some wonderfully dense and entertaining television. Season three continues to follow numerous story threads and characters, and while some are more engaging than others there’s not a single dud among them. The production value remains high resulting not only in strong performances but also in brilliant production design and cinematography. And if you haven’t watched the ninth episode of this season yet… oh my. Enjoy. Beyond the actual quality of the series, HBO proves once again that they care about the packaging and special features more than any other network. The Blu-ray case, complete with slipcase, is once again a gorgeous and highly practical creation. [Blu-ray/DVD extras: Featurettes, commentaries, deleted scenes]

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Joffrey in Game of Thrones S4

Last week HBO put out a 15-minute season four preview for Game of Thrones, filled with promises for the future and a number of great GIF-able shots. This week they are keeping it simple and showing us a two-minute trailer. Labeled “Vengeance,” this one takes us through the state of revenge that is simmering in Westeros. Arya Stark has plans to kill some people, plenty of people want to kill Joffrey and Tyrion doesn’t look too happy about where he ends up. That and we get some strong ultimatums from Daenerys on the other side of the world. The entire gang’s back together — even Stannis — so without delay, let’s watch this trailer.

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The Red Viper in Game of Thrones

In a 15-minute preview special aired last night, HBO pulled back the curtain on the highly anticipated fourth season of Game of Thrones. And with it, we return to our wall-to-wall weekly coverage of everything happening in the land of Westeros. Yes, Blog of Thrones has returned and so has all the death and destruction we’ve come to expect as clans clash for that big, beautiful Iron Throne. This new featurette goes well beyond the season four trailer, exploring some of the sets and themes that will light up the screen when the show comes back on April 6. As Peter Dinklage explains, it’s time to “pick up the pieces and top” what has come before. In picking apart the new preview, I’ve found five promises that Game of Thrones has made to its audience this year. Will they come through on these promises? So far their track record is pretty solid.

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Game of Thrones

The first full trailer for the upcoming season of Game of Thrones has arrived on the internet after premiering tonight before the HBO premiere of True Detective. For those who have loved and lost with this series, the promise of the fourth season is that of pain and (hopefully) some revenge. If we look deep into the elements shown in this trailer, there is a lot of moving pieces. Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) building her own new world of freed slaves, Jon Snow (Kit Harrington) back on the right side of The Wall, the remaining Stark children forced to go on without a number of family members, and Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) right in the middle of everything, flung far from the good graces of his family (and his wretched nephew, King Joffrey). Ah yes, and there be some ever-growing dragon shadows above the land of Westeros. Watch for yourselves after the jump.

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2013review_tvshows

According to the kind of people who are prone to make such pronouncements, the Golden Age of Television ended this year with the series finale of Breaking Bad. But with more quality television on the air today than is humanly possible to watch, I don’t see how that could possibly be true.  The one big observation about the TV landscape this year that I’d like to make is that there finally seems to be a preponderance of shows about women, a much-needed correction to the masculinity-obsessed, anti-hero shows like The Sopranos, The Wire, Mad Men, and Breaking Bad. I love and admire all of those shows, but I’m glad to see that the new opportunities for original programming that the proliferation of cable and now Netflix and Amazon offers has resulted in more stories about women. Without further ado, my picks for the 13 best shows of 2013:

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