Thursday, May 7, 2009

Bran • Tyrion

Bran hasn't named his wolf yet, and is having second thoughts about going south. He aspires to one day join the Kingsguard -- the Westeros version of the Secret Service. He does his best spiderman impression on Winterfell's walls and overhears a revealing conversation between the queen and her twin brother. Cersei is very paranoid of Ned and his motivations now that he's accepted the Hand position, especially considering Lysa's murder accusations. Then, as if to outdo Viserys and Dany, Cersei and Jaime have some good old fashioned twincest while seven-year-old Bran voyeuristically watches their "wrestling match" from the window. Upon discovery, Bran almost falls, but Jaime saves him, only to shove him off the ledge again.

My reaction, after the initial "WTF did that just happen?" was to hope that Bran's wolf ran under him and softened the impact. Thankfully, Martin does not believe in such ridiculous cop outs, because Bran survived the fall and is in a coma. I never flip forward in books to find out what happened, but I confess I did so here, just to see if there was another Bran chapter. If I didn't, I would constantly wonder if he was dead for another hundred pages. If Bran ever wakes up and explains what happened, there will a lot of people angry with the Lannisters. Thus far, Jaime hasn't been a very good Kingsguard, considering he's screwing the King's wife and tried to kill the Hand's son.
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I think it's awesome that Tyrion gets his own POV. Readers rarely get the villain's side of the story, especially one as likable as Tyrion. His disciplining of Joffrey was interesting; Tyrion may not have genuine concern for Bran, but he clearly understands the politics of the situation. What I learned from this chapter was that all Lannisters are not created equal: Tommen and Tyrion differ greatly from Joffrey and Jaime.

In addition to being a dwarf, Tyrion seems to be far more intelligent and perceptive than the other Lannisters. I wonder if he knows about his siblings' incest, especially since Jaime seems so careless. Royal adultery with your sister the queen while right under the King's nose is stupid, but pushing a Lord's son out the window is even stupider. Also, after observing how Joffrey behaves, Cersei must be a very inept mother. How could these two twin idiots possibly have kept their affair a secret for all this time? I assume this isn't the first time they've secretly had sex. Judging by Robert's reaction to the Lyanna's death earlier, Jaime would not survive if his affair with Cersei was discovered.

If there was any doubt about me finishing this book, these last two chapters erased them -- I can't wait to find out what happens.

27 comments:

  1. "I think it's awesome that Tyrion gets his own POV. Readers rarely get the villain's side of the story"

    This is what makes these books for me. This isn't the only character like this either. The way he writes, with perspective swapping, makes you not really know what side is good or bad. It almost erases the term good and bad from the books. There's a particular character I hated the first two books, and in the third book he gets his own perspective chapters and now he's my favorite character.

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  2. Now Cory, don't give the game away. Let him get the same goose bumps we did when we first read them all. (oh, and I agree, btw)

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  3. What's really making me laugh is people so fervently discussing the book and basically giving it away. "Just wait eight more chapters and the best part happens!" or, "OH MY GOD, this certain thing happens to this one character really soon and I can't wait until you find out about it because it's just so shocking and I know you'll be just as shocked as I am!"

    Chill the fuck out. Jesus.

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  4. Knight Of WinterMay 7, 2009 at 8:55 PM

    Wow! Anonymous hostility!! Sounds like someone needs to 'Chill to xxxx out' and it aint poster number's one and two.

    Re the blog though... still enjoying it a lot particularly while rereading AGOT. BTW I'd probably fall of my perch if I saw those two at it!!

    Keep it going Jason!

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  5. I just found out about this blog, and from what I have read so far I will coming back for more.

    I don't know if a lot of people are fans of your humor,(sarcastic douche along with pop culture references)but I certainly am.

    Oh and I remember the moment where I realized that A Song of Ice and Fire was going to be different than everything else out there. It was also the moment I got hooked. The line was the famous "The things I do for love".

    Looks like we got hooked on the same part.

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  6. this is where i got hooked too. great pair of chapters. glad you seem to be enjoying it so much, this is fun to read along with.

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  7. Glad to see the Bran chapter had the desired effect on you. You're in the for the long haul now and I'm exciting to be following along with you. Enjoy!

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  8. "I think it's awesome that Tyrion gets his own POV. Readers rarely get the villain's side of the story, especially one as likable as Tyrion."

    One of the great things about ASOIAF is that there are very, very few out-and-out villains or good guys. Everyone is just a varying shade of grey. Some of the 'villains' are likeable. Some of the 'good guys' aren't. And some of them start out one way and develop to the other extreme throughout the course of the books.

    I'm so jealous of anyone getting to read them for the first time! I first read A Game of Thrones ten years ago, and it's still one of my favourite books.

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  9. I completely agree with the anonymous above me. Martin really brings in the human concept instead of the everyday heroic-knight-who-slays-dragons-and-frees-women-from-tall-towers.

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  10. It's interesting that you think of Tyrion as a villain. I wonder if your perception will change as you move forward.

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  11. I am interested to know, not agreeing or disagreeing, what led you to think that Tyrion is a villian right off the bat. I sympathized with him right immedialtely. I mean, i percieved him as a guy with big napoleon complex and family issues, and felt kinda sorry for him.

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  12. He probably put Tyrion in the villain box because he is a Lannister (and some of them are really evil). Anyway, stop giving the man hints for Throne's sake, you'll just end up spoiling him. I still curse the fact that I got spoiled before I got to A Storm of Swords (you all know which bit I'm talking about).

    Anyway, I'm really enjoying the chance to see the story through the eyes of someone who doesn't know it, I envy you right now. I like this story so much that I bought the first two books and gave them to my grandfather as a birthday present.

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  13. No ones evil. Don't be stupid. There's simply circumstance and motive.

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  14. One thing to keep in mind as you read the various chapters is that not all point-of-view characters are equally reliable. Sometimes you're reading events from the perspective of an insider (who might not notice things that are obvious or very familiar to him or her, any more than you might comment on the color of the carpet in your own bedroom). Sometimes it's the perspective of a child, who doesn't have the sophistication or the maturity to understand what's really going on. Sometimes the text will tell you what the character sees, and then go on to say what interpretation or conclusion the character draws from those observations-- and those interpretations or conclusions could be wrong.

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  15. Ok. You style is awesome, it makes me laugh and amuses me to no endXD. I'm jealous that you're experiencing this, and I wish I could do it again ^.^
    Very interesting, your views on Tyrion, Jon and Catelyn. I like that you consider Tyrion an antagonist, because he really is, even if he technically isn't, since he's so entertaining and easy to emphatyse with. I think your views on Jon may change, and I can't wait to see your opinion on future Jon chapters. And I'm positively THRILLED that you seem to like Catelyn, since she's reviled by more than half of the fandom (and I'm not giving anything away, because 90% of the people who hate her started to do so when she mouthed off precious Teenaged Hero Jon Snow)
    Also, Arya is awesome, and the Most Badass of the Stark kids. Along with great sense of humour, you have good taste :-)

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  16. *sighs* psst, sarah-rojo: your comment contains spoilers

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  17. So many spoilers... I really hope Jason is getting his friend to edit these posts before he reads them. I understand that everyone is excited about Jason's first read but try not to put so much info in your comments. I'd be mega pissed if I read these posts before reading the chapters to come. Beware Jason... :)

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  18. Lovin' your blog by the way ;)

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  19. Hey Jason, thanks for blogging. I was considering a re-read of the Ice and Fire books while we wait for the next book, but this is actually better. We not only get to review the whole story from the beginning but we get the perspective of a first time reader as well.
    Don't be discouraged by some of the sourpusses who seem to be way too serious about the books, your humorous take on things is really enjoyable.
    Besides, it's your blog, if they don't like reading about "Bob" Baratheon that's their problem, not yours.
    Thanks again - dfg

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  20. lol @ the idiot several comments up

    "He probably put Tyrion in the villain box because he is a Lannister"

    Because that doesn't ruin it

    Oh, and:

    I still curse the fact that I got spoiled before I got to A Storm of Swords (you all know which bit I'm talking about).

    Yeah, not obvious at all.

    Stop ruining his read for chrissakes.

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  21. Everyone seems to be getting worked up and lashing out on these asoif sites, more than usual. Maybe people are just really feeling the burn now that adwd is supposed to be close to release. I do agree with the person above and several comments up though. Stop acting like giddy children and spoiling the book for him. Self control.

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  22. Oh also, it seems as though people don't want him getting the wrong impression about the book and characters, so they are trying to guide him with comments hinting at something. Remember we all went through this beginning stage, which is part of the fun.

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  23. The post editing thing is really giving us convenience at the expense of Jason's friend's time -- I think we the readers of this blog should restrain ourselves.

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  24. Eagerly awaiting your next blog entry!

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  25. Really? People dislike Catlyn because she mouthed off to Jon. When I first read her nasty outburst, I was a little shocked, to be sure. But given the circumstances, I was certainly willing to cut her a little slack. I think Jon does too. Anyway - I like them both, despite thier tendancies to leap to conclusions without all the evidence.

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  26. I don't know about alot of people but the reasons I didn't like Cat's chapters had nothing to do with Jon or anything else she was just boring after awhile.

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  27. Your humor and biting sarcasm are really refreshing, especially since there are so many bloggers, articles, wikis etc. that approach these books in such a serious way. It's nice to see someone having fun with it, and you're clearly very perceptive. I just wish your reviews were a bit longer! Also, never stop calling Robert King Bob, because it's hilarious.

    I think you would really love A Podcast of Ice and Fire - it's been running for about 4 years I think, and it's comedy gold. The hosts do weekly topics, what-if discussions (my fave) chapter by chapter re-reads, and are currently doing reviews of the HBO series. I've gotten many a good laugh out of these guys, and a lot of great insight when they're not going off on tangents. Be warned though - finish the books first, as this podcast is spoiler city.

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Thank you for reading and commenting on my blog. I love feedback and comments, but please keep them spoiler-free. Enjoy!