Guys That's My Wife
by DICK CHENEY
Thrones. If Bran can take the form of any human being, why not embody his enemies? The answer is that to think like those who wish us harm is an ugly business. It's bad enough to just be Bran, I mean he sent his brother into the wilderness under the watchful eye of some crazy ex-wilding. I got the exact same feeling watching Rickon walk away as when my best friend in college married a Jehovah's Witness. Every time I open the door, I think it's going to be him.
But onto the good news. Not spoiling the Red Wedding for my wife Lynne was tremendously hard; I kept giving her weird clues like if we were in the grocery store or at the dry cleaner, I'd slyly pull up my sleeve and I'd be wearing mail underneath. The satisfaction when she finally got this joke after tonight's episode was worth the chafing feeling on my thighs. There is no armor that does not weigh you down.
Enough circling. Watching Bran's mother get put down was crazy great. I mean, I could go on for hours listing all the things Catelyn Stark has done wrong. In fact:
1) She was kind of a dick to her husband, children, and Jon Snow.
b) That hairstyle dated back to the time of the old gods. Melisandre could have given her a perm; perhaps that would have been for the best.
14) She led Littlefinger on for like two decades
22) She made Stannis Baratheon's wife look like Barbie.
31a) Instead of going to King's Landing to support her husband, she was all, "Oh, he'll be fiiiiiiine"
31b) Instead of going to King's Landing to support her Sansa, she was all, "Joffrey's a sweet boy"
31c) Instead of going to King's Landing to support her Arya, she was all, "New Hot Pie will protect her."
37) No eyeshadow
45) I once heard her make a dismissive remark about Barbra Streisand's nose that struck me as borderline anti-Semitic.
But really, Catelyn's worst crime was not her hair or her lack of military expertise or general uncleanliness. It was that she was always by her son's side, when she had children who needed her a lot more. Parents always play favorites, especially when some of their children are totally useless, like Bran. A daughter is always a lot less welcome than a son; GRRM's trenchant commentary on contemporary China is preferable to another speech by Tyrion about prostitutes, don't you think?
As for Robb's direwolf, that was pretty sad guys. I sort of felt like Arya could have done something... I mean, she could have done a lot of things. She could have ensured Tywin Lannister never lived to deliver that order; in effect, she caused the death of her mother and her brother, and I respect her all the more for that.
Making a lot less sense was the overall behavior of Jon Snow. This was heartbreakingly weaselly stuff. One of the toughest men ever on the night's watch died so you could be where you were, guy. And instead of slaughtering some old dude who were mere moments away from being eaten whole by a white walker, you gave up the Ghost and started running ppl through with your sword? Ugh times one million.
I have an equal crit for Ygritte. Your plan was this, unkempt woman: commit the murder your boyfriend had promised to do, and thereby...save him? Do you even have the slightest idea of how easily infections are transmitted through a human bite? My wife is still convinced that is how Michael Douglas got cancer, since no woman in her right mind would allow him near her pelvis.
You've got to circle the Red Wedding. You can't come too close to it.
It's complete insanity to break up the dragon queen's story like this. She should have dedicated episodes, maybe just an ABC Family movie where Daario Naharis gets a paunch belly and won't do anything but watch Storage Wars and chew on beef jerky. The real problem with the dragon queen right now is that the beginning of her story is a lot more interesting than her rise to power and every time they actually use those CGI dragons it probably costs a fortune, so they don't. It's kinda strange when the show's production values suddenly drop from this:
to Jason and the Argonauts-type bad with Grey Worm, Daario and Sir Jorah Mormont on the most transparently ugly studio in the world. Poor Grey Worm; his queen is sounding more like Dr. Laura every day:
Signing off from the Red Wedding in total silence reminded me of something. I used to work with a certain person who always felt that less is more, that most meaningless of phrases. When you consider this pathetic expression more closely, anyone can think of nothing. We desire instead a rich world, and that is what Game of Thrones provides. Even a small pause of remembrance undermines its point — these deaths, while shocking and incredibly graphic to those of us who do not spend our time writing Jon Snow-Daenerys Targaryen fanfiction ("I'm fascinated by your white privilege, Jon Snow" "My medium sized dragon ate your wolf Jon" etc) lack any real meaning. They are just something that happened to this one:
while she is on her way to get where she is going.
It is selfish but honest for those surrounding death to speak of its effect on them. They are only the victims. Robb Stark planned to assault Tywin Lannister's home, slaying his servants and his army. Knowing this, Tywin made sure he struck first. There was nothing more to it than that, no menace beyond those carried out by the Frey men who stood to benefit from this betrayal. Robb and his ferociously bad looking mother made a military mistake and nothing more.
What Game of Thrones does best, and why it is finer when it does not take itself seriously at all, is show us the irony of any celebration. Things are just not going to work out for any of these people in the way they hope. (The Hound knows this best — eventually someone is just going to burn his face again.) It does drive us mad to be close to something wonderful, whether it be a particularly musical woman or a parent who we have not seen since a time in our childhood that appears impossibly distant in retrospect. It is equally as comic that we can never achieve our heart's desire as it is sad.
Next week on the Thrones season finale: Ned Stark returns as a white walker, Tyrion Lannister has a wet dream and impregnates his leather jerkin, Joffrey starts ignoring his bethrothed and focuses on playing Black Ops II full time, Melisandre gives birth to a spectral Mary Tyler Moore, Theon Greyjoy is tortured for a solid twenty minutes, Cersei goes on a tragic late night QVC ordering binge, Sansa Stark gets implants and Samwell Tarly finally shows off the depth of his wizardry by proving he is the only man in the seven kingdoms able to make it through A Dance with Dragons without falling asleep more than once.
Dick Cheney is the senior contributor to This Recording. He is a writer living in an undisclosed location. He would like to send his condolences to all living members of the Stark family, including Ted Stark, Red Stark, Don Stark, Mike Stark, Tiffany Stark and Bed Stark. Your cousin Ned should probably not have married that ginger woman. You can find an archive of his writing on This Recording here.
"Passerby" - Allie Moss (mp3)
"Corner" - Allie Moss (mp3)