Tag Archives: Lady Stoneheart

What Do You Want to See Happen on Game of Thrones This Season?

Word of Warning – come Springtime, this blog is going to Stark up the place.  I pay the Iron Price, but I always pay my debts, Winter is Coming, and so is Game of Thrones.

As I recall from last year, there are a lot of GOT Nerds in the book blogosphere.  So I hope to get these posts rockin’ with lively discussions – what is that wacky imp going to do next?  Who is George RR going to bump off next?

And where the heck is Lady Stoneheart?

Is it too early to start talking Game of Thrones?  Yeah, probably.  But what the hell.

What do you want to see happen on Game of Thrones this season?

Hypotheticals only.  No spoilers.  I haven’t read the books, so I’m only as far as the series.  That is probably a sad admission for a book nerd, but so be it.

And if you have no predictions or comments as to what you hope will happen, then just feel free to discuss anything going on in Westeros.  Or its neighbors.

Valar Morghulis.  Wait till April?  This a man cannot do.

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Lady Stoneheart – Pros and Cons

OBLIGATORY SPOILER WARNING

The nerdosphere is aghast with fury at the news that Lady Stoneheart, a character in the Song of Ice and Firenovels will not be in the Game of Thrones TV series. As someone who has watched the series but not read the books, I’ll throw my two cents into the already chock full well of public opinion.

WHO IS LADY STONEHEART?

Novel readers will probably correct as I mangle this explanation, but here goes. After the Red Wedding, Catelyn’s body is dragged out of a river. The Brotherhood Without Banners brings her back to life as a zombie who can barely speak due to her throat having been cut. A shell of her former self, she basically becomes a new character – Lady Stoneheart. She travels the countryside on a quest for revenge, killing anyone whoever did the Stark family wrong.

Michelle Fairely, the actress who played Catelyn, recently announced that Lady Stonheart won’t be featured in the HBO series. Let’s discuss the pros and cons of that decision:

PROS – NO LADY STONEHEART IS GOOD

I’m not a book reader but I am a self-spoiler. Unable to wait to find out what happens next, I often check A Wiki of Ice and Fire. I’m like the dumb jock that doesn’t read the book but doesn’t want to fail so I read the cliff notes. Although, after self-spoiling the Red Wedding, the Purple Wedding, and Tyrion killing Tywin, I have pledged to not self-spoil anymore in the upcoming seasons.

When I self-spoiled the news that Cat becomes a zombie, I have to admit my first impression was, “Umm…really?” The Red Wedding was just such a powerful scene. George RR Martin weaves you into such a false sense of security. It really appears as though the Starks and Walder Frey have made up and are letting bygones be bygones. The wedding starts out as a joyous occasion, Robb’s uncle is happy to be marrying what appears to be Frey’s only attractive daughter (Sidebar had Frey let Robb know of her existence this whole mess could have been avoided). Then, out of nowhere, all Starks and Stark men in attendance are brutally executed. Quite an unexpected event. On the show, it was quite emotionally disturbing to see all hope drain out of Lady Catelyn’s face just before her throat is cut. That was some great acting on Fairely’s part.

So in some respects, I feel like it would be somewhat silly to say, “OK, Cat’s back as a zombie now!” Zombie Cat takes something away from that powerful Red Wedding scene. One of George RR’s ongoing themes in this story is that life is unfair – bad things often happen to good people, that you want the heroes to overcome but in real life, the heroes don’t always come out on top. So in some respects, Cat coming back to life takes away from the power of the Red Wedding scene.

Plus – overall, the HBO showrunners have done a great job so far so surely their judgment must be understood here. There must be some technical reason why they felt Lady Stoneheart would not play well on screen. As discussed in the nerdosphere, I don’t think it’s any kind of contract issue. I think they could get Fairely to come back and do it. If they couldn’t, well, the character is a zombie, so they could stick any old chump in zombie makeup.

I wonder if the issue is they just think that a Zombie Cat would just be too cheesey. They have this as-realistic-as-the-fantasy genre gets TV show and then all of a sudden they have this zombie version of one of their characters running around. Although I’ve never heard that explanation offered. Most of the explanations have been that they just could not fit her in because they want to do too much else and they only have 10 hours a year and can’t fit in every little detail…

CONS-NO LADY STONEHEART IS BAD

…but this isn’t a little detail! We want revenge for the Starks and without Lady Stoneheart, how does that happen? I agree that TV/Movies can’t always 100 percent mirror their book source material, but this is a big plot line to just overlook. Lady Stoneheart’s path of destruction causes a lot of ripples in the GoT world and it would seem like to not include her would be to have to constantly change the overall GoT storyline. Thus far, the showrunners have remained faithful to the books and that has yielded some powerful results in terms of viewership and show popularity. Admittedly, Lady Stoneheart seems like an unusual idea to me, but I haven’t read the books. I trust George RR’s judgment and writing abilities and I’m sure he took this unusual idea and ran with it in a powerful and amazing way that would be fantastic to watch unfold on screen.

In other words, my fear was Lady Stoneheart would be too much – “Grrr…argh..me zombie…me must kill Lannisters” but from what I hear, the character is much more moving and scary than that.

Plus, it’s not like the Red Wedding scene is taken away from that much. It’s not like she comes back and is all happy like “Hey, look at me, I’m Zombie Cat!” From what I hear, Lady Stoneheart is very sad and tortured – to the point where Cat would have been better off having been better off left dead.

FINAL RULING

How is this an extraneous character or plotline? It’s not like this is an issue where Tyrion wears blue shoes in the book but they make him wear red shoes in the TV. This is a major character in a major plotline. To take her away means the need to make many changes to the show to the point where it may become like True Blood where the show bears no resemblance to the source material whatsoever. While we can debate all day on source material deviations, I think we can all agree that in this case, remaining true to the source material has paid off for both HBO and the viewer.

With today’s make-up and CGI capabilities, I’m sure that an awesome looking Lady Stoneheart could be produced and surely a Zombie Cat on a revenge quest could make for riveting television. Ultimately, none of us run the show so this is like complaining into the wind, but I hope the HBO suits have not made a bad decision here.

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Previously on Bookshelf Battle… (June 2014 Wrap-Up)

In case you missed any of the booktastic goodness, here’s a rundown of what was produced from the Bookshelf Battle Command Center in June:

GAME OF THRONES

Obligatory Spoiler Warning

As the Red Woman might say, Sunday nights in June were dark and full of terrors. Literally. It was quite terrifying to see some of my favorite GoT characters kick the bucket. It’s a good thing that I didn’t bet on the fight between The Red Viper and The Mountain because I chose Oberyn and would have lost a lot of money, in addition to the lunch I lost when the Mountain took advantage of the Viper’s showboating. Don’t gloat, people. No one likes a sore winner…loser? Whatever.

My predictions for Tyrion’s future weren’t all that on point either, meaning when it comes to plotting strategy, I’m about as good as Cersei. (That’s not very good!)

While some lamented that the episode did nothing to move the story along, I for one enjoyed the Attack on Castle Black as it was amazing to me to see Summer Blockbuster special effects on a television show.

On the Season 4 Finale of Game of Thrones Brienne and the Hound went head to head on Westeros’ Ultimate Fighting Championships, Arya cashed in her coin for a trip to Bravos, no one expected the Stannis Inquisition, and Tywin had the Worst Father’s Day ever, although he did achieve his wish of ending up on…a throne. That joke never gets old.

BOOK REVIEWS

A Light Between Oceans - being guarded by Robocop

A Light Between Oceans – being guarded by Robocop

Oh right – this is a book review blog. Australian Author M.L. Stedman managed to crack my manly exterior and allow a tear or two to shake loose with her riveting yet heartbreaking page turner The Light Between Oceans. After a boat containing a dead man and a live baby washes up on their tiny island, a lighthouse keeping couple decides to toss the dead man in a ditch and raise the baby as their own. I applauded the author for her ability to display the mental gymnastics that people put themselves through in order to convince themselves what they are doing is right when in fact, it is very wrong. I feel like we can all agree that the moral of the story is – don’t trust your kids around lighthouse keepers. Or Australians.

Master Chief - standing guard over Redshirts

Master Chief – standing guard over Redshirts

After Stedman made me cry (it’s ok, it happens to the best of us now and then), I was ready to laugh so I cracked open Redshirts by Sci-Fi author John Scalzi. This Star Trek parody delivered laughs at warp speed. A group of new Redshirts – aka the intergalactic lackies who do the grunt work for a space ship’s main officers, quickly learn that their reason for existence is to take the beatings, lazer blasts, monster attacks, and other abuse so that the officers can remain unscathed.

VARIOUS AND SUNDRY RAMBLINGS

To round out the month,I asked why the heck are those vampires so popular? Seemed like a good discussion topic since this is the final season of the HBO series True Blood. The series is based on the Southern Vampire Mysteries Series by Charlaine Harris, and my post provides a reading list of her novels in order, in case anyone is interested in reading the books that formed the basis for the Sookie-Bill-Eric love triangle. Actually, if you add Alcide, it would be a quadrangle. Wait a minute! A quadrangle? Isn’t that just a square? OK so they form a love square.

I urged readers to donate to Levar Burton/Geordi LaForge’s Kickstarter campaign to bring back Reading Rainbow. Please donate. He needs your support. Much has been said about his success as Reading Rainbow host, but people always forget that he was one of the finest engineers to ever serve Star Fleet. He rarely gave Capt. Picard any guff about fixing the star ship engines. He ran circles around Scotty. Capt. Kirk would always be like, “Scotty, we need warp speed in thirty seconds or the Klingons will kill us” and Scotty would be all like, “Damn’ it Cap’n the best I can do is get the wharp drive half-fixed by next Thursday!” Geordi, on the other hand, now there was a dude that got stuff done – even though he was blind! Well, he did have that special visor.

By the way, if you haven’t heard yet, Seth MacFarlane of Family Guy fame has pledged to match donations up to a million, so please get crack-a-lackin’ with the donations to this good cause. And as one of the three people who both saw AND enjoyed MacFarlane’s A Million Ways to Die in the Old West, I’d like to thank him.

Transformers 4 arrived at the box office Friday and I speculated as to whether Mark Wahlberg will reprise some of his past roles in this new blockbuster in a parody trailer script.

Last but not least, after hearing the song, “Wiggle Wiggle” for the millionth time on the radio, and being left unsure whether to be disturbed because they keep playing it, or relieved because they’re finally switching it up a little bit and playing a song other than “Let it Go” or “Because I’m Happy,” I asked the question as to why I bother slaving over my writing when America is easily pleased by lyrics about butts. You know what to do with those big fat words!

STUFF I NEVER GOT AROUND TO

With so many books engaged in fisticuffs over a coveted spot on my bookshelf, there where two things I forgot to mention:

  • 24-Live Another Day – I’m glad this show is back on the air. It’s nice to see William Devane has found something better to do than those damn daytime “Buy Gold” commercials. He’s really been stealing the show this season. Great to see Michelle Fairley back on TV as well.
  • No Lady Stoneheart – (Obligatory Spoiler Warning) – Actually, do I need to give a spoiler warning? Lady Stoneheart, a character from the Game of Thrones books, will not be in the Game of Thrones series. So, I guess if you never read the books and only watched the series, then this is not a spoiler for you since you were never going to see her on the show anyway. You can’t spoil something that won’t happen. Because if a tree was going to fall in the forest, but then it doesn’t, it doesn’t spoil. Alright, I’m going cross-eyed thinking about this. Anyway, there’s been a lot of chatter about this controversy. I do understand that TV shows can’t remain true to every little last detail in the book. Sometimes I’ll hear someone say something like, “This show stinks because on page 302 of chapter 40 book three Tyrion had on a pair of green shoes but on the show he wears blue shoes!” and I just want to yell, “Shut up, Nerd!” But I get why this makes people upset. I never read the books, but this seems like a big plot point to gloss over. A Zombie Catelyn running around Westeros exacting copious amounts of revenge? How does that not make for great television?

That does it for this month on http://www.bookshelfbattle.com – where the book reviews are always awesome, and yet, the book reviewer somehow manages to stay humble about it.

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