Turns out Robert Frost wrote a poem just for us “Game of Thrones” fans.

“Fire and Ice,” by Robert Frost

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.



“The lone wolf dies, but the pack survives.”


This is what makes me worry over Arya’s fate before the show ends. I think a lot of people would think of Jon as the “lone wolf” of the family, being a putative “bastard” and being relegated to the Night’s Watch, etc.  I, for one, always imagined the prognostication applied to him. (I think it was a verse Ned recited to Sansa in Season 1?) But … being marginalized, vilified or betrayed doesn’t mean Jon has been alone.

Jon’s has always had friends near him.  He became a King, for god’s sake.  But more than any of the other Stark children, Arya has usually walked alone.  Her primary motivation is personal revenge, whereas Sansa, Jon and Bran are respectively motivated by their duties to House Stark, Westeros, and all of humanity.  (I myself am slightly befuddled about Bran’s importance, including during the Battle of Winterfell.  He’s … “the world’s memory?”  I thought we had books and maesters for that.  But whatever.)

Arya doesn’t exactly leave the Faceless Men under the best of terms.  Even when she encounters Nymeria in the woods on her way back to Winterfell, her own former pet turns down her invitation to join her.

Then, even when she’s back among her siblings at Winterfell, she keeps to herself.  Upon her arrival, she slips by the two guards who were supposed to escort her.  When Jon asks where she is, Sansa says something to the effect of “She’s lurking around here somewhere.”




Continue reading

Knights in Wight Satin …

Soooo many “Game of Thrones” puns that I want to post online, soooo many spoilers I need to beware of sharing.  What’s a nerd to do?

The generic puns are safe enough.  People seemed to enjoy my “I’m dreaming of a wight Christmas” tension-breaker when that storm started hitting during last night’s episode.  Or maybe they were just humoring me.  They do that a lot.

I’m waiting for someone to do that weird thing where they brag about having never seen an episode of the show.  I want to hit them with “Arya Stark raving mad?!”  Which I guess is kind of pointless, because they won’t understand the reference, but still.



In the Game of Nolans, predictions are lies.

I’ll say it again.  Sansa’s outfit on “Game of Thrones” is absolutely reminiscent of the Night King’s armor.

Is this a thematic clue?

I keep hearing from fans of the books that there was a “Night Queen” or “Lady of the Night” who figured prominently in the source material.  A few people thought Catelyn Stark would become this figure following the events of the Red Wedding.

I am usually wrong about these kinds of things.  Seriously, all of my predictions about what will happen on popular TV shows inevitably turn to to be false.  But still.



A few quick words on the Season 8 premiere of “Game of Thrones”

I’ll keep this brief, because it’s unlikely by now that I can write an unbiased review of a “Game of Thrones” episode anyway.  The show is so close to my heart that simply seeing the characters again for Season 8 is like being reunited with old friends.  I’d rate the first episode a 10 out of 10 if only for the characters and dialogue.

And that’s mostly what we get in the premiere.  If you’ve been waiting for this universe’s apocalyptic war to escalate, then you’ll be disappointed.  The episode focused almost entirely character reunions, relationships and conflicts, laying out the stakes for what will be a bloody final season.  Nearly all of it was great stuff.  (Like a lot of viewers, I loved the closing seconds of the show.)  There was only one key exchange of dialogue that didn’t play the way the writers intended — an interaction among Sam, Danerys and Jorah that was blackly and unintentionally hilarious.

I read comments from a couple of fans online who were nonplussed by the episode’s lack of action.  I think we needed this character-focused groundwork to lend emotional weight to the war when it arrives at Winterfell.  (I think we can assume it will fall; I can’t imagine the good guys defeating the Night King in their first major battle.)

I loved it.