The Greatest Dwarf Known to Man

I think we can all agree that one of the most loved characters in Game of Thrones is the dwarf, Tyrion Lannister.  The dwarf, second son of Tywin Lannister, has advanced greatly as a character in the show.  He’s gone from being a wanton little drunk, to being a wise Hand of the Queen.

The journey that Tyrion has taken has been one of trial and error and controversy.  When we meet him in Season 1, he’s plying his ‘trade’ in a brothel in Winterfell upon arrival in the pilot episode of the series.  He’s the black sheep of the Lannister family; having bad relations with his father and sister.  However, he is very close with his elder brother, Jaime Lannister, and his niece and nephew, Myrcella and Tommen Baratheon.  Nobody can fault Tyrion for not thinking of his family and putting them first.  He just also has to think of himself every once in a while.

In the first season, Tyrion is a little drunk runaround with no power, and he knew it.  That’s why he had all the time in the world to drink and sleep about.  In the second season, he is given power by Tywin Lannister, his father, to act as Hand of the King in his stead during the war.  Tyrion comes into Kings Landing with fire and brimstone; basically to clean house and control the temperamental and impulsive behavior of his nephew, Joffrey Baratheon.  Joffrey immediately takes an even greater dislike to him because Tyrion is challenging him every step of the way and basically calling him an idiot.  Tyrion takes control of Kings Landing when Stannis Baratheon lays siege to it.  They ‘win’ because of the timely arrival of Tywin and the Tyrell forces, but they really won because of Tyrion’s ingenuity.  At the end of the second season, Tyrion has been pushed to the side by his family.

In the third season, Tyrion still has a position on the small council, but it is now a minor role as Tywin is Hand of the King.  He is merely a pawn in the clutches of his family, forced to marry Sansa Stark so as to get an heir to Winterfell.  However, Tyrion takes pity on her in light of all she suffered at the hands of Joffrey previously.  He does not consummate their marriage and instead does everything he can to protect her.  However, that all changes when Joffrey is mysteriously poisoned at his wedding in the fourth season and he is accused of the crime.  Near the end of the fourth season presents Tyrion with a great betrayal: the companion, Shae, whom he was very fond of, lied about him at his trial and was in fact, sleeping with his own father.  Needless to say, the end of season three was very emotional for Tyrion.

Season 5 sees him being escorted by Varys to Slaver’s Bay, where Daenerys has taken up residence and is freeing the slaves.  However, he gets drunk and separated and is kidnapped by a banished Ser Jorah Mormont.  They journey together and run afoul of dragon scale diseased people and slavers.  That is how Tyrion eventually meets Daenerys Targaryen.  At first, they are suspicious of each other: he’s the brother of the man who killed her father; and she’s the daughter of the Mad King, who wanted to burn everyone.  They start off on rocky ground and have to work their way up to a level of respect and trust that we find them at in the latest season.  Of course, they don’t like ways the other does certain things, and they have to talk it out.  But, that’s when Drogon lands and flies off with Daenerys, leaving Tyrion in charge of a(nother) battle torn city.

And… Season 6, Tyrion is dealing with Missandei and Greyworm, both of whom think his more diplomatic approach to, well… everything, is not how Daenerys would want it.  Tyrion gets frustrated that nobody sees the benefit of his plans.  Nobody except Varys.  The Master of Whispers works with Tyrion to get sh*t done around the city in Daenerys’ absence.  And then, she returns with a hoard of Dothraki at her back and an awesome Season 6 battle finale (for Daenerys) takes place.  She now she has an armada and an army.  She also now has a Hand.  Daenerys asks Tyrion to be her top adviser and he accepts.  We don’t know his reasons until the next season.

Season 7 sees both the Queen and her Hand in difficult straights.  They land on Dragonstone easily enough, but it’s easy to take an abandoned castle.  However, doom follows them when they start to lose allies.  First, the Greyjoy fleet under Yara is destroyed by the one under Euron.  Then, the Sand Snakes are defeated and Ellaria Sand is imprisoned beneath the Red Keep per Cersei’s orders.  And… Greyworm and the Unsullied army are trapped at Casterly Rock (also Euron’s fault).  Because she was following Tyrion’s advice when all the sh*t went down, Daenerys blames him to an extent, and turns to the visiting Jon Snow.  Since Tyrion and Jon had a decent relationship when they met previously, Tyrion really doesn’t have a problem with it.  Or, does he?  He finagles the meeting between Cersei, Jon, and Daenerys.  He even convinces Cersei to join them in the fight against the Night King (even though we as the audience know that she’s really trying to stab them all in the back).  And then he sees Jon going into Daenerys’ cabin and he looks disappointed.

Disappointed because he loves her.  Daenerys seems to have that effect on men.  The only problem is, she seems to be oblivious to ones that will really make her happy.  Not saying Jon is a bad guy by any means; he’s just not the guy for her.  Both her and Tyrion are rulers, and I personally believe that they should rule together.

And on that note, it’s been real!

The Importance of a Good Character Death

Everyone knows when they read a book or watch a movie that there is a chance a character they really love is going to die.  Either the character was the funny/supportive friend, the wise mentor, or even a love interest, no one is safe!  If one show/series of books has taught us that, it’s Game of Thrones.  George R. R. Martin is notorious for killing off many good characters that we all loved or came to love.  First example would be Ned Stark, as played by Sean Bean.  Ned Stark was the perfect character: loyal to king and wife, a devoted father and a good master.  That’s probably why he needed to die (per Martin’s logic).  But then, that set a precedent for most of the character deaths on Game of Thrones.  They were all good characters.

Now, everyone who has read/watches Game of Thrones, has probably also read/watched The Lord of the Rings.  J. R. R. Tolkien created a world and any good characters; most of whom live to see peace come to Middle Earth.  Honestly at the rate GOT is going, who is going to be yet living at the end of this final season?  Nobody!  Of course, GOT is on a larger scale than LOTR simply because there are more books in the series.  So, I guess there are more characters to kill off, but they are usually the good guys.  That’s my problem.  Tolkien understood the importance of having a well placed death of a good guy, but he didn’t do it often.  Obviously in The Fellowship of the Ring, we believe Gandalf has perished, and Boromir sacrifices himself to save Merry and Pippin.  In The Two Towers, Hama is slain while defending Helms Deep (this is from the book, not the movie, where he still dies, but in a warg attack).  In The Return of the King, we see Theoden die in combat at the Battle of Pelennor Fields.  Also, if you recall, Halbarad, one of Aragorn’s Dunedain Rangers, also dies in battle.  That’s four good characters who died.  That’s less than one hand by a finger.

For GOT, you’ve got the characters as follows:

  1. Ned Stark
  2. Khal Drogo
  3. Robb Stark
  4. Catelyn Stark
  5. The Blackfish
  6. Commander Mormont
  7. Pyp
  8. Grenn
  9. Osha the Wildling
  10. Rickon Stark
  11. Benjen Stark
  12. Talisa
  13. Hodor
  14. Jojen Reed

And probably a couple of others we’ve all forgotten.  Many, many, many deaths.  It is important for certain, key people to die in order to give the heroes or heroines a reason for finishing the job as it were.  There have to be deaths so that somebody can say, “Their deaths will not be in vain.”  Just, don’t kill everybody who ever showed a whiff of goodness and decency.  That’s why there’s this meme:

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And on that note, it’s been real!

 

Female Villains: Best Written By Men

If you’ve read my title and aren’t offended, congratulations!  If you read it and are, get over it.  I’m a woman and I’m giving an honest opinion of what I’ve seen of female villains in movies and shows and how they are portrayed.  And I’ve discovered that the best female villains were written and scripted by men.  Here’s why.

A woman is going to write a female villain in terms of ‘how would I act if I was evil’.  All well and good, but she’s also not likely to be honest about it because she doesn’t want people to not be able to relate to her female villain.  In her attempt to make them relatable, she makes them too weak or nice in a way.  Not good!  When you make a female a villain, make them a conniving b*tch because that’s what a woman is when she’s angry, or has plans for world domination.  Now, not to say all men have female villains down pat.  They make mistakes too… why?  Because they’re human like us and nobody is infallible.

An example of a bad female ‘villain’ is Maleficent, as portrayed by Angelina Jolie in the 2014 movie of the same name.  It was written by a woman about one of Disney’s most iconic villains, and she made her good.  The mind positively boggles.  The movie had a low reception from moviegoers, with a score of 51% on Rotten Tomatoes.  Their critique was Jolie’s performance was good, but the script and the idea that Maleficent was the ‘heroine’ just didn’t fit.  And most loyal Disney fans would have preferred the traditional Sleeping Beauty story with Jolie playing the green-skinned villainess as she was supposed to be.  We all know that even though the movie was named Sleeping Beauty, Prince Philip, and Flora, Fauna, and Merriweather were the real heroes.

Now the example of a good female villain would be Hela, portrayed by Cate Blanchett in Thor: Ragnarok.  She was powerful, terrifying, eerily attractive, and above all: a cold-hearted b*tch.  Thank you, male writers!  I have tears in my eyes!  Hela was the perfect villain and Cate Blanchett did an excellent job with bringing her to life.  She was devious, vengeful, spiteful, and strong.  You hated her, but at the same time, you admired her.  She knew what she wanted from life, or, death as it were; and she knew how she was going to get it.  Things just conspired to get in her way, but she certainly wasn’t a villain who was a pushover.

Now, that’s not to say that women can’t do female villains, it’s just rare for them to be honest enough with their character to create a foe worthy of their protagonist.  When I created my main villain of my trilogy, I just stopped analyzing and let the character speak to me.  Princess Rae dan Kae of Capricorn, killed her mother when she was born because of the curse of a pair of horns that protrude from her temples cutting her open.  Her father blamed her for his wife’s demise, but never said anything directly to her.  Rae dan Kae is the unspoken heir to the throne, and is too terrifying for any man to approach to ask for her hand in marriage.  She is conniving and plans to subjugate the other nations to her whim and will.  Her father thinks he makes the plans, but she is really the influence over him and many others in her kingdom.  She kills because she can, and her moods are unpredictable.  Rae is incapable of love and the only true emotion she is possession of is contempt.  Everyone else and all other nations are beneath her and her idea of Capricorn.  She was the perfect opposition for Zodia in every way, and when I wrote their clashes, I really enjoyed myself.

Well, there you have it for that problem: the dilemma of worthy female villains.  Careful with humanizing them because you could possibly take away those traits that will make them truly despicable.

And on that note, it’s been real!

I Love It When a Review Comes Together

I’m proud to say that I know the original A-Team show, and not because I was alive when it was airing (by any means).  But, one night we turned our TV on and the Retro channel was playing this quirky dramady about four guys on the lamb, ex-military, helping people who couldn’t go to anybody else.  To six young kids, they were modern day Robin Hoods with automatic weapons and a sexy black van.  Now, everyone these days tends to remember the A-Team movie, that fell shy of the bar the show raised, but, I don’t think I will go into those details right now.  For this post, I’ll just focus on why the show was so good.

One of the main reasons the show was popular, were the characters.  The main characters were the four members of the Vietnam special forces team: Col. John Hannibal Smith, Lt. Templeton ‘Faceman’ Peck, Capt. H. M. Murdock, and Sgt. B. A. Baracus.  They had their skills, their quirks, and their signature looks that people could relate to.  Hannibal was the leader and ‘father-figure’ as it were of the group.  He smoked cigars, was usually on the ‘jazz’, and was a struggling actor.  He led the team without any doubts as to the decisions he made; and if anything did faze him, he kept it to himself.  He also had complete faith in his men, and whether or not he told that to them plainly, or masked it in loving sarcasm, he still told them.

Even though he was a rank below Murdock in the military, Face operated as Hannibal’s second-in-command.  He was the scrounger of the group; ask and you shall receive.  He was also their playboy, always with a girl on his arm and a smooth phrase on the tip of his tongue.  He was the looks for all the girls who watched the show.  He was all about appearances, being the grifter, he had to look good.  He was always armed with a killer wardrobe.  Face always whined about doing dangerous jobs, or ones that didn’t bring in a lot of money, but in the end, he still did the right thing.

Murdock was always the wildcard, the unpredictable contestant in every plan.  He was technically committed to a psych ward right after the Vietnam War, and had been there ever since.  Murdock was usually the person that was silently called upon to freak their targets out.  He had his dog, Billy; he spoke to his horse, among many other things that made Murdock unique.  Although, the best thing Murdock did for them was fly.  He flew helicopters, planes, even a patched together glider.  While singing German opera on that last one.  Only a certifiably crazy person woulddo something like that.  Although, Murdock was also a bit of a chameleon.  He dabbled in the jobs of Hannibal, Face, and B.A.  He admired Hannibal, was in awe of B.A., and loved Face.  But, he was still basically the child of the family.

The last member of the team was B.A. Baracus.  B.A. was the team’s sergeant in the army, but on the run, he was the driver, the mechanic, and the muscle.  He was also actually the soft spot of the group.  He loved children and many a kid worked their way under his thick skin.  He also liked helping the elderly, and frequently got the team on their charity cases.  He kept mostly to himself though while off the job, never dating or seeing any women.  There were a few women on the show who had an interest in him, but his true love was always his big, black, beautiful van.  And everyone heard about it if anything happened to it.  Heads rolled.

On the whole, the show was a huge success, despite the best efforts of the television station.  The feminists and liberals hated it, but the actors still took over the show and kept it true for the sake of their young viewers.  And those young viewers have grown up now, and are thanking that show for making their childhoods memorable.

And on that note, it’s been real!

 

Game of Reviews

Warning: SOME SPOILERS!

I’ve mentioned Game of Thrones before, but I’ve never really talked about it in detail.  I decided that the time is now.  Everyone who even has an interest in pop culture, knows about Game of Thrones.  Actually, the oddest of people know about Game of Thrones.  I was very surprised when it was revealed that my doctor watched it, and we started talking about it, and now it’s something we can chat about whenever we want to.  However, that’s not what this post is going to be about.

Recap… and… go!  In my honest opinion, the show started off strong, but has since gotten stronger.  They needed to get rid of certain characters in order to not only advance the story, but to advance the show.  Yes, there is a difference.  Joffrey was alright as the little twat of a character he was, but, he did not feel like a villain.  He felt more like the spoiled child character that hangs around far too long.  Thankfully, he was removed from the picture in a fitting and gruesome manner.  He only hung around for four seasons (thank God).  He just wasn’t a fascinating enough character anymore.  After we found out he was the product of incest, we lost all interest.

After Joffrey, the Stark children started advancing.  We had Sansa finally learning (through many a difficult trial) how to properly play the game.  And she started to see who she could trust and who she couldn’t.  But, she decided to follow the old philosophy: keep your friends close and your enemies closer.  Sansa basically had Petyr Baelish on a leash before his end.  Now, she just needs to get a few others to heel, and she’ll be all set.

Arya has grown from a pup into a feral wolf, which is equal parts good and bad.  It’s good in that she seems to be able to assassinate whomever she wants; and it’s bad in that she doesn’t understand the importance of playing the game.  Arya wants to storm ahead on her path of revenge, and damnation to any who try to stop her.  So, she is an asset, as long as she learns how to control her emotions/listen to other people.

Bran is a little confusing, and that is only because of all the fan theories surrounding him.  Some people say that he is actually the Night King, so, anything we do say about him, is speculation.  He is the Three-Eyed Raven, meaning that he has the gift of sight.  His gift certainly came in handy when dealing with Baelish, but what will Bran do now to ensure his cousin’s victory in the war to come?  And again, people are hypothesizing about Bran being the Night King.  I am not saying anything with regards to those theories.  It would be difficult to explain how Bran is the Night King, while at the same time warning everybody about it.  Eh.  Mind games can only go so far.

With Jon, we see the biggest step of all being taken.  He is the King in the North, and now, a sworn banner to Daenerys Targaryen; while at the same time, being Aegon Targaryen, the heir to the Iron Throne.  And the beautiful thing about it is: he won’t want it!  The moment Bran and Sam tell him the news and show him the paper, he will deny his august right in favor of Daenerys.  This will try everyone once the word gets out.  Sansa will want him to remain in the North instead of going South to rule because she more than likely feels that he is on her side whatever happens.  Arya will want him to go South, if only so that she can go with him to kill Cersei.  Bran will play Devil’s Advocate and say the pros and cons of both sides.  Daenerys will not like Jon’s claim to the throne at first.  Unless/until she suggests they wed to stop any fuss.  Tyrion will be against it (because he likes her himself), and many others will point out the familial ties.  Jon will more than likely say no (despite having already slept with her) because of it, but Daenerys will not let it stop her.  That will be one of many conundrums the next and final season.

And then, we see the redemption of Jaime Lannister.  He started out as the quintessential *sshole, but he transformed.  He learned humility when he lost his hand, and learned to have feelings for somebody other than Cersei (in a romantic way) with Brienne.  Of course, Cersei has seen her again in the dragon pits and knows that she now works for the Starks.  She’ll have her cold eyes on her now.   But, at the end of the previous season, Jaime turned his back on Cersei and decided to ride North to help the Dragon Queen and the Starks fight against the Wight Walker Army.  He decided to keep the promise he made and leave his sister, who is now pregnant with his fourth child.  Congratulations, Jaime!  You are a character that has almost come full circle!

Well, there are many GOT theories and thoughts and wishes that fly around, but not all of them (or any, depending on the writers) will come to fruition.  We shall see in the eighth and final season many things that will make us cry, laugh, cheer, and gaze in awe.  I hope that we will not be disappointed.

And on that note, it’s been real!

Amazon in Middle Earth?

Alright, if you don’t know that Amazon bought the rights to Middle Earth and plan on doing a pre-pre series to both The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings; have you been living on Mars?

Amazon/Middle Earth

For those of you who are not informed, that is a link to an article covering Amazon purchasing the rights and some speculations.  I’ve got mixed emotions about the whole thing.  When it comes to the two sets of trilogies, I do get a kick out of them.  That’s only because my sister sits next to me and we decide that Boromir, Merry and Pippin need a motor boat to get to the Falls of Rauros, and the balrog is now Billy Bob Balrog.  That aside, I enjoy them, but I am aware of when they have deviated from the book.  Tom Bombadil, for instance.  The character is a jolly, but powerful individual that Peter Jackson left out!  They left him out!  Him and his beautiful and equally resourceful wife, Goldberry.  Gone!  Cut from the universe!  I’ll start ranting if I continue, so I will move on.

Anyway, Amazon said they planned on doing a prequel series to even The Hobbit, which probably means they will attempt to do The Simarillion.  The Simarillion is even longer than The Lord of the Rings, which makes it perfect series material.  Of course, that also depends on how Amazon decides to represent it.  Will they follow verbatim what Tolkien put down?  Or will they follow in Peter Jackson’s footsteps and take creative license?  The epic story tells the tale of Beren and Luthien, the two characters upon which Tolkien built his universe.  Many fascinating characters live within The Simarillion besides Beren and Luthien.  There is Huan, the Hound of the Valar and companion of both Beren and Luthien.  There is Tevildo, the feline cohort of Morgoth (the Valar have hounds and Morgoth has cats), and arch-enemy of Huan.  Carcharoth, one of the wolves in the service of Morgoth, and the creature responsible for biting off the hand of Beren that was holding one of the Simarillions.  Loosely based off the Nordic myth when Fenrir bit off the hand of the god, Tyr.

The story as a whole is a long romantic tragedy, that just manages to have a happy ending .  Beren, a mortal man, falls in love with Luthien, and elven princess.  Her father doesn’t want him to marry her, so he says in order for him to grant his permission, Beren must retrieve one of the Simarillions from the crown of Morgoth.  Basically a suicide mission.  But being a determined woman, Luthien escapes her father and joins Beren and Huan on their quest to steal one of the powerful stones.  The Simarillion has enough plot for Amazon to make a series out of it.  Now, let’s just see if they make a good one.

And on that note, it’s been real!

Go Down with the Ship

Everyone (well, most everyone) knows what a ‘ship’ is these days.  A ship is when fans pair their favorite characters together and make them a couple.  Regardless of gender, BTW.  The idea of ships is not in and of itself; it’s just hysterically funny.  Some of the ships people do come up with, it’s like, “You had nothing better to do, so you did this.”

My younger sister had no idea what a ship was, so I decided to ‘educate’ her.  She probably still hates me for it now.  Here is a list of some of the ships that have been done, and I will asterisk the ones my sister hates.

  1. Cherik – Charles and Erik (X-Men)
  2. Ereri – Eren and Levi (Attack on Titan)
  3. McDanno – McGarrett and Danny (Hawaii Five-0)
  4. Jelsa – Jack Frost and Elsa (The Guardians and Frozen)
  5. Jonerys – Jon Snow and Daenerys (Game of Thrones)
  6. Olicity – Oliver and Felicity (Arrow)
  7. Stony – Steve and Tony (The Avengers)*
  8. Bagginshield or Thilbo – Thorin and Bilbo (The Hobbit)*
  9. Stucky – Steve and Bucky (Captain America)
  10. Thorki – Thor and Loki (Thor)*
  11. Lokane – Loki and Jane (Thor: The Dark World)
  12. Larcy – Loki and Darcy (Thor)
  13. Johnlock – John Watson and Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock)

There are a few other ones from Middle Earth that don’t have official names, but they exist, and piss my sister off so much.  Except for maybe the Boromir/Eowyn one.  She likes to entertain the possibilities.

The funny aspect is that there are people out there who spend a large portion of their day thinking this sh*t up and putting it out on the internet.  It’s hysterical!  I’m laughing my *ss off right now!  We all have characters we really like and we want to see them happy in their shows, or movies, or whatever.  But, really?  Putting them in impossible relationships like that?  Your life is sad, sad, sad if you’re thinking about that.  And you probably don’t have a relationship of your own if you’re worried about somebody else’s.

And on that note, it’s been real!