We Reached The "Everybody's Broken Past Fixing" Part of Game of Thrones

Remember when all the characters on Game of Thrones were shiny and new? Now Tyrion Lannister can't get laid in a whorehouse. His brother Jaime has lost his groove. The Stark girls have death in their hearts. Jon Snow's a traitor forever. Last night's premiere showed these characters aren't just broken, but broken… » 4/07/14 8:38am 4/07/14 8:38am

Did Game of Thrones finally explain where power really comes from?

On one level, last night's Game of Thrones was about parents and their damaged sons. (Along with the age-old maxim, "You broke it, you bought it.") But really, it was about offering one plausible answer to the question the show has been asking from the beginning: Where does power come from? Who really has it, and why? » 6/10/13 1:04pm 6/10/13 1:04pm

Why do we sit through the brutality of Game of Thrones every week?

Ever since we lost Ned Stark, Game of Thrones has been turning into a more and more chaotic show, in which horrific events befall various characters in a seemingly random fashion every week. This one loses a hand, that one gets crossbowed to death. So why do we keep watching it? Are we just sadists? Masochists?… » 6/03/13 12:17pm 6/03/13 12:17pm

Peter Dinklage deserves another Emmy for last night's Game of Thrones

Holy crap, the writing and acting on Game of Thrones keep getting better. Last night's episode was both epic and understated, with small moments that carried huge weight. This was another episode all about rape (arguably, a key theme of the show) and yet it was smart and entertaining. Thanks, in no small part, to Peter … » 5/20/13 12:31pm 5/20/13 12:31pm

Is Game of Thrones all about the war between Varys and Littlefinger?

Varys and Littlefinger may seem to be minor players — but the maneuverings of the noble families of Westeros often seem to come back to their ongoing chess game. Also, in last night's Game of Thrones, Varys and Littlefinger articulate two very different philosophies, which help illuminate the divided loyalties you're… » 5/06/13 12:36pm 5/06/13 12:36pm

On Game of Thrones, some men just want to watch the world burn

The Mad King of Westeros really, really liked wildfire. A lot. Crazy King Aerys has been dead a long time, but he still overshadows the realm — not just because those who deposed him are ruling, but also because his terrible reign raises the ultimate question: When is it okay to break your oath and turn against your… » 4/29/13 12:00pm 4/29/13 12:00pm

On Game of Thrones, revenge is a dish best served among friends

Last night's episode of Game of Thrones had a pretty clear theme of mutilation and revenge running through it. But slightly further below the surface was the idea that seeking revenge requires not just patience, but strange friendships. Scheming to destroy the people who've hurt you actually changes who you are.… » 4/22/13 2:00pm 4/22/13 2:00pm

Was this the rapiest episode of Game of Thrones?

Game of Thrones was at its absolute most brutal last night, with crucifixion, mutilation, horse slaughter, and a couple of very rapey moments back to back. And then, in the middle of the blood orgy, the show delved into the gruesomeness of fiscal policy. What's that about? Spoilers ahead... » 4/15/13 9:00am 4/15/13 9:00am

Game of Thrones Week 2: You can't let bullies change who you are

A major theme of Game of Thrones, at this point, is deception. People are taking on false identities, or otherwise pretending to be someone they're not, or hiding their true intentions. But last night's Thrones showed the other side of the coin: bullies can make you into a different person, and change your very… » 4/08/13 1:25pm 4/08/13 1:25pm

Game of Thrones Week One: Alliances You Already Know You'll Regret…

Game of Thrones came back last night, with an episode that shows how people's fortunes have risen and fallen in the wake of war. But more to the point, it showed alliances being made and broken. Some people who cast their lot with terrible friends last year now have cause to regret it — but other people are keen to… » 4/01/13 12:24pm 4/01/13 12:24pm

Game of Thrones Week 10: Destiny and Other Foolish Notions

Last night's Game of Thrones featured a lot of characters pausing at the edge of the whirlpool — before sailing over the edge, into darkness. Several of our favorite characters faced one last chance to stop and reconsider their choices, before it was too late. And almost all of them stayed committed to their terrible… » 6/04/12 12:29pm 6/04/12 12:29pm

Game of Thrones Week 7: The More People You Love, the Weaker You Are

Leave it to Queen Cersei to come out with a brilliant bit of life advice. You have no choice but to love your children, but you should love as few other people as possible, if you want to be powerful and free. Last night's Game of Thrones saw several characters flirting with huge betrayals — and the choice between… » 5/14/12 8:00am 5/14/12 8:00am

Game of Thrones Week 5: What wins wars: magic, money or manpower?

We barely saw any magic at all in Game of Thrones season one, until the final moments. But now, that's all starting to change. Magic is suddenly bursting out all over, playing a huge role in deciding the course of the war in Westeros. But magic carries a heavy cost with it — and even the power to defy the physical laws … » 4/30/12 2:29pm 4/30/12 2:29pm

On Game of Thrones, everyone's a king, and children are pawns

Westeros is infested with wannabe kings. And on last night's Game of Thrones, we explored more of just what makes men powerful: the ability to make children, or control the children they already have. Whether it's marrying your kids off, or just throwing them away, everybody is treating their children like pawns. » 4/16/12 12:40pm 4/16/12 12:40pm