Watchers steered us to this Hollywood Reporter article today, in which several Game of Thrones cast members predict how we the audience will react to the end of “the Red Woman” this Sunday night. We are told to expect the unexpected:
Over at SXSW, at the Game of Thrones exhibit known as SXSWesteros, there’s a bit of Season 6 footage available that isn’t being shown anywhere else. I think this is unfair, but according to this one guy on Twitter, the footage they showed today includes this:
Well, yes, I had assumed as much. (A later Tweet by the same user says she’s talking to Davos, which is not a surprise.)
This provides context for Melisandre’s confessing to Davos of the victories she’d seen in the flames all being a lie. She’s not confessing her error regarding Stannis, or at least she’s not just talking about Stannis. I think Melisandre was upset when most of his army deserted him, and she had been expecting him to take Winterfell long enough to give Jon a chance to show up and take over, but she hadn’t really been expecting Stannis to become Lord of the Seven Kingdoms since the end of Season 3.
Now she’s probably thinking, she led Stannis into a war he couldn’t win, she burned Shireen alive and triggered Selyse’s suicide and let Stannis march a piddling army of foot soldiers into a battle with a much bigger, mounted army, because she’d been banking on Jon to be her Azor Ahai, and then Jon died. She must be feeling shitty about that. She may be feeling a bit guilty about tying Shireen up to that pyre, and she may be blaming herself just a bit for Selyse hanging herself from that tree, and she may be feeling like an asshole for all that time she spent stringing Stannis along with a promise of sitting the Iron Throne, but mostly, what’s really destroying her is Jon’s death.
I’ve recently become a writer for FanSided, and so far I’m really enjoying it. I signed on to write about Game of Thrones, which means I’ll basically be doing much of the same stuff I’ve been doing over here, but letting them edit and format it to their specifications and post it on their site.
So far what I’ve written for them is:
Knowledge is power, so what don’t they know? — I give an overview of the end of Season 5, in terms of various characters lacking valuable information.
Monday night, the EOD posted a link on the Slack channel (I assure you, this all makes sense) and asked for someone to write something on it. I stepped up. Seems I may also, occasionally, write about Harry Potter ish for FanSided.
Alan Rickman and the meaning of ‘always’. — someone changed my headline to something with a misspelling. There are worse problems to have.
Later that night, the same editor posted another link and asked me to write something on it. I was sitting there thinking, “YOU’RE ASKING ME, SPECIFICALLY, TO WRITE SOMETHING ON JAIME LANNISTER IN SEASON 6? HAVE I FINALLY FOUND MY PEOPLE?” I think it was more because I was already present and available, rather than because of my brilliant analytical skills, but sure, I stepped up.
HBO debuts brief Game of Thrones Season 6 footage — again, not my choice of headline. (My idea of a headline was: “What is Jaime Lannister doing on that horse?” I guess it sounds too much like a disapproving mother with her hands on her hips.) The story is basically: look! Jaime’s working with the Tyrells! I may have leaned on prior knowledge of filming leaks for this insight, but seriously, it’s all there in the video. It’s our first HBO-sanctioned image of Jaime in S6!
This one here is where I’ve really pulled out the stops: I analyzed Melisandre’s actions and came up with an explanation. This is possibly the most sympathetic to Stannis that I’ve ever been. In case anyone’s wondering: I haven’t changed my mind about him being dead. Oh, he is dead as Ned Stark, but the revelation is basically that he was victimized, rather than supported, by Melisandre’s guidance. The editor made my piece look super-pretty and treated it like a big story that’s worthy of attention, and he changed some of my wording in the process. That’s his prerogative as an editor, but I still prefer my version of the first paragraph, so I’ll use it here. There is no universe in which I will apologize for referring to Cersei’s children as “inbred bastards.” My ideas, however, are kept very much intact in the FanSided version.
When the Red Priestess Melisandre of Asshai first began serving Lord Stannis Baratheon of Dragonstone, she surely believed that he was Azor Ahai, destined to become King of Westeros and save the world. As the next-oldest brother of the recently deceased King Robert Baratheon, and with the understanding that his late brother’s putative children were really inbred bastards, Stannis had the best claim to the Iron Throne and was easy enough to convince. Melisandre gained his trust, converted his wife Selyse Florent to the faith of the Lord of Light, and became one of his closest advisors, in competition with Ser Davos Seaworth. It was with the understanding of Stannis as savior that Melisandre used her magical skills to help him kill his younger brother and rival for the Iron Throne, Renly Baratheon. It was with Melisandre’s guidance that Stannis continued his campaign to take the Iron Throne, culminating in the failed siege of King’s Landing.
To see the rest, go read the story: Making sense of Melisandre.