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  1. Rewatched the musical segments again today, and finally am ready to admit that I always lose it when Bobby comes out and stands up from his wheelchair in Wayward Son.
  2. Interesting episode, great thread! (Lots of great quips in here, though "Septa Ratchet" may be my favorite) One thing I noticed that pinged my Bookwalker radar was the throne room scene with Tyrion, Jorah, and Daario. When I saw how they were positioned when Tyrion questioned their fitness to be consorts to Daenerys, I was reminded of "The Dragon has Three Heads" and the speculation on who the three dragon rider-consorts will be. Seems like visually it could have been a tease about it (whether it comes to pass, no clue). I was pleasantly surprised by the filming work done for Cersei's Walk of Shame; I had been dreading how badly it could have gone with the slobbering anticipation by some fans to see Lena Headey naked (good job on the body double, and entirely understandable - funny how medieval our society is regarding woman actors and their bodies still...). It's not perfect by any means, but I felt that they made an effort to carry emotional weight and focus on Cersei's state of mind and her journey, making it something that services her character development (rather than just titillating viewers). There are so many times on this show (and others) where bad things are done to women but the viewer gets no access to what they are thinking and feeling (see: Sansa and Ramsay), resulting in them being merely objectified in service of other ends. Here, by focusing so much on Lena's face, you get to see what she is going through, and I could almost hear her internal monologue; her bleeding feet afterwards was good too to show how much determination it took to get through that. I don't remember from the book whether Sparrows were as adamant about protecting her by knocking back rabble (I admit that I raced through that overly long section to get it over with), but I liked that touch because it kept the Walk ritualized within the religion of the Seven rather than just a free-for-all to abuse Cersei. It was still really hard to watch, but it should be uncomfortable if it gives us good insight into the religion, the people, and Cersei's journey (done better here than in the book, imo). I also got the feeling that Cersei may not be as done as I thought after reading the book; as problematic a character as she is, I wouldn't mind seeing a transformation in her towards some greater strength (probably just before she bites it, knowing these guys). re: Brienne and Stannis: I see it as plausible reasoning that Brienne can choose to spare Stannis' life and use him to fulfill her oath to protect Sansa; there often is a clause that if you legally could have killed someone, you can compel them to your service instead. As far as I'm concerned, you ain't dead on this show until your head rolls off or your throat is slit, so I'm headcanoning that she redirected her swing into the tree by his head for now.
  3. The problem is that the writers put this whole situation in a bind - Dean can't die, he doesn't want to keep killing, and oh, now the Mark can't be removed without another host or The Darkness eats everything. I guess I shouldn't be surprised that they set this up, but this constant upping of the ante for the Winchesters being put into impossible dilemmas is frustrating for me, and I'm an ethicist who usually enjoys working through these things.
  4. For the whole scene with Death until he was dusted, I expected it to be a gambit for Death to assess how much Sam truly cared about Dean for ... something to resolve the issue. Like Dean had to try everything he could to threaten Sam and dissuade him, and if Sam passed the test, Death would pull some mojo that would split the Mark between them (so they could share the burden) or do something similar that would make it bearable. I would have greatly preferred for it to just be the three of them chowing down on Mexican food together until the Darkness Apocalypse hit; it would have been more in character for them.
  5. I'm not a big fan of them becoming gods, but that seems to be a likely thematic outcome of them botching up not just the world, but Creation entirely. If we'd left it at Season 5, then the world could still exist as it was. But after opening Purgatory, going beyond Alpha monsters to Leviathans, and now killing Death and unleashing the primordial Chaos, the world is entirely broken without some high-level force to patch things up. There is also the literary theme of patricide - you kill the father to replace him in the power structure, whether it's one's biological, figurative, or divine father (yes, usually masculine). Whether that is your intention or not, you're stuck with the job. I'm also not a fan of the Fate reset idea, but it also is one I could see as plausibly logical given where things are. The story of the Winchesters is one of suffering, self-sacrifice, and perpetual fuckuppery of the universe - a Sisyphean struggle. Given that Dean has had a death wish for quite a few seasons now, I could see him being on board with something like that, no matter how ill-advised. I would say their story could end in death (and peace), but they screwed the pooch there too. Not advocating any of these, but just trying to think through what the endgame theme is for the story (assuming they are trying for one). They're running out of universe to bork, and it's getting hard for me to see this ending in anything but tragedy or bittersweet closure. ETA: to the question of God fixing things or the Angels wanting things to go down as they did - God's AWOL and the Angels are mostly dead, along with a bunch of other gods and minor mystical beings who worked with the big picture. That's part of the problem - there's almost no one left to keep the universe running anymore, but also no one to say "no" to the boys (esp. without Death, RIP).
  6. Going with your time reset idea, SueB, I wonder if it would be possible for Sam and Dean to change their destiny. Wasn't Yellow Eyes the big instigator of everything? If they stopped him from feeding Baby!Sam demon blood and killing their mom, would that be sufficient? (I'm just coming off The Flash's finale, so I'm seeing parallels). The worst part of that reset for me as a fan would be that they never get to meet Castiel and Crowley (both of whom I'm convinced love Dean in a bizarre divine/infernal way). So we have a time reset and a complete nuke and pave of the world; those do seem to be the two main options at this point. There could be a fun episode with alternate realities exploring these options - would be the fun/bizarre genre-breaker episode. :)
  7. I'm bitter that they killed Death for no significant reason; his scenes are always excellent and he's the best authority on How Creation Works we're going to get. If Dean had explained at some point that he was going to take over as Death, or that this would prevent him from killing anyone, it would make sense. But there was no reason given to us. Boo.
  8. In dark of the S10 finale, my suspicion that the boys are going to end up entirely remaking the world, Neon Genesis Evangelion style, is buzzing again. Each season they dig deeper into the structure of the world's mythos, and now they've gone beyond God's work to the chaos before Creation. I mean, once you've killed Death, where else do you go? (He was potentially around before God, right?) At the point that they're beating back the Darkness, they are literally doing the work that God did in Genesis; what will separate them from being gods themselves? Or maybe they will play kingmakers and install Crowley and Castiel and retire on the beach instead... (I originally posted in the unspoiled speculation thread b/c I wasn't sure what spoilers for next season would be here, but the main discussion seems to be here, so I've copypasta'd it)
  9. In dark of the S10 finale (get it?), my suspicion that the boys are going to end up entirely remaking the world, Neon Genesis Evangelion style, is buzzing again. Each season they dig deeper into the structure of the world's mythos, and now they've gone beyond God's work to the chaos before Creation. I mean, once you've killed Death, where else do you go? (He was potentially around before God, right?) At the point that they're beating back the Darkness, they are literally doing the work that God did in Genesis; what will separate them from being gods themselves? Or maybe they will play kingmakers and install Crowley and Castiel and retire on the beach instead...
  10. This is what drove me bonkers about that scene. If Sansa had actually had some sort of agency or exercised some power of her own - to show that she is this "hardened woman" - then I would have accepted this scene as accomplishing something. I'd buy "seductive/charming Sansa" because that would show that she's taken Littlefinger's advice to heart and used information from Miranda (kind of how Daenerys started to take charge with Drogo). Alternatively, if Sansa just went total Stone-Cold Quiet while she was being raped, and we got a shot of her face, tight with stoicism and burning with resentment, then there would be a clear sign of strength and agency - making it about her (and not about Theon's angst). But the way it played out, it did nothing to show us that Sansa is any different from how she started out, or that she's any different from any other woman (which is part of the terrorism of M-F rape). Lazy writing, repetitive tropes, nothing interesting. I also really resent that the writers are using Sansa's rape as a tool to get us to hate Ramsey more and to look forward to him dying horribly; we didn't need that, and it does great disservice to Sansa, whose story is more important than Ramsey's and Theon's combined.
  11. Welcome to the show! I'd recommend starting with the first eps as a way to get to know the characters and context better. I do agree, however, that Louis seemed a little OOC this ep. Maybe it's to show that we all have our weak spots where we'll indulge selfishness or feelings of inadequacy rather than do what is objectively better? I was totally expecting to see Jessica lampshade some version of "Oh, it's so nice to see you have a Chinese friend!" since I got asked several times by my parents why I didn't ever bring an Asian friend home. The "Chinese boy adopted by Jewish parents" was a great provocative twist to think through though.
  12. I feel that he is being as reasonably honest as one can be about such a life. Does the book reflect the whole truth and nothing but the truth? Probably not. But no memoir/autobiography will since it inevitably comes from a person's perspective. And even if the author later knew about someone's motivations for being a certain way, trying to include that could detract from an effective narrative. If any of us were to relate our entire childhood, we would each mess up on something, guaranteed. It's how memory works. Anyone who experiences prolonged domestic abuse and violence is going to face challenges telling the story; trying to balance cultural differences as well (including the translation of words and key concepts across the culture barrier) is going to be difficult for anyone. I believe that the memoir is reasonably accurate and that he is being sufficiently honest about some really difficult issues; I'm not done with it yet (now I want to read it through since we have a place to discuss it), but I have been enjoying it for the insights and history.
  13. Ah, I just watched E07 so I see where the "weak stomach" things comes from. An easy explanation is that anyone would have trouble after eating as much Sriracha as Eddie did. Another more complex one might have to do with Chinese medicine; when I went to an herbalist/acupuncturist, he took my pulse and diagnosed the relative health/strength of various body systems, like respiratory and digestive (there are three common pulse points that correspond to these systems, I believe). I always was told that I had a weak respiratory system; this was reflected in my allergies and constant sinus infections. My reading of the "weak stomach" thing is more akin to that - that it's diagnosed by a Chinese healer, so extra care is taken in food combinations and other things. But with proper nutrition and health practices (like herb treatments), a weak system can be made stronger. I don't know how much this reflected Eddie's real life, but it could plausibly have made him very aware of food and appreciative of nuanced combinations - often times "weakness" can also be considered a sensitivity, easily overwhelmed, but potentially more discerning in the right circumstances.
  14. He wanted it at lunch in school, yes, but it was for social acceptance, not because it actually tasted good. And I'm pretty sure he wanted to like the gross mac 'n cheese in the book, but the body wasn't willing. :)
  15. Everyone has something they can't/won't stomach; Julia Child hated cilantro (a common thing), for example. As a child, I couldn't handle ginger in chunks or black peppercorns, and I would gag on oatmeal. The mac and cheese story in the book was great to me because it made strange (as anthropologists say) what is seen as "normal" in America - for an outsider who had never had dairy (and is probably intolerant) and who isn't used to the slimy texture and chemically enhanced flavorings of box mac 'n cheese, it's entirely reasonable for it to be too much without hurting his food cred. Some might even argue that it's not really "food," but a "food product." ;) I would be willing to try balut and just about everything else short of hakarl (rotten shark) and casu marzu (maggot cheese), but a lot of Midwestern Americana grosses me out from its cloying blandness and slimy texture. Sorry, Ms Blue Jay, didn't mean to be gross since I hate puke scenes too; mostly I wanted a scene where Eddie can't handle the "normal" food there. It would have been satisfying to see someone actually say it about the boring-icky potluck food the Stepfords made all the time. :)
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