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Elizabeth Sandifer

Elizabeth Sandifer created Eruditorum Press. She’s not really sure why she did that, and she apologizes for the inconvenience. She currently writes Last War in Albion, a history of the magical war between Alan Moore and Grant Morrison. She used to write TARDIS Eruditorum, a history of Britain told through the lens of a ropey sci-fi series. She also wrote Neoreaction a Basilisk, writes comics these days, and has ADHD so will probably just randomly write some other shit sooner or later. Support Elizabeth on Patreon.


  1. C
    June 27, 2016 @ 4:49 pm

    yeah, this was tremendously entertaining stuff (w/ the exception as you said of Sam in the Library, which felt like a bit from an earlier ep that got cut & then shoehorned in so as to establish where Sam will be next season).

    Some of the brio comes from the almost gleeful wrapping-up of GRRM’s endless plots, some of which have been dangling since the Clinton administration, which makes me forgive the Mission Impossible Arya, who manages to kill 2 Freys & use the Twins’ kitchen to make them into a pie without anyone apparently catching on.

    & the endgame players are the most ruthless & essentially the most psychotic of the bunch, barring still-clueless Jon (who I wager won’t survive at the end). Poor Margery didn’t grasp that she needed to involve Cersei in her game, not still keep trying to take her off the board. adios fair Natalie.


    • Ozman Jones
      June 28, 2016 @ 1:59 pm

      I would suggest that Arya didn’t need to actually bake the brothers into the pie as such. Just kill them, lop off a few incriminating parts and then strategically place them into the pie where they could be ‘discovered’ at will. The finger was in a very opportune place when the reveal was made, so seemed quite set up, and didn’t appear to have been baked.


  2. Matt Michael
    June 27, 2016 @ 7:47 pm

    Does that Tower of Joy scene make proper sense if you didn’t already know what it was going to reveal? It’s clear Jon’s Ned’s nephew but the Targaryen connection I think will need spelling out next year


    • Phuzz
      June 28, 2016 @ 8:49 am

      That was my thought too. As a fan it all went down pretty much as I’d been expecting, but it would have helped if the word “Targaryen” had been mentioned at least once.
      Ned didn’t seem surprised to see his sister dying in childbirth, despite having started a war to save her from her ‘abductor’ and ‘rapist’, Rhaegar. I was expecting at least a few questions along the lines of “what has he done to you?” or “did he hurt you?”, which would have been a good point for her to explain about the baby.


      • Matt Michael
        June 29, 2016 @ 4:43 pm

        My hypothesis was borne out by my sample of 1 colleague today, who thought the reveal was Ned had a baby with his sister. Given incest is a recurring theme in GoT I bet he’s not the only one who made this assumption


  3. Yóshee
    June 27, 2016 @ 9:19 pm

    I’m kind of baffled that you think Harington’s acting is somehow worse than Clarke’s. That’s not to insult any of the three actors, I think they’re all brilliant, but Emilia seems to struggle more than Peter or Kit, coming off wooden at times. I’ve no doubt this is partly in line with her character, but even so, Kit’s acting has improved immensely over the show’s course, especially in the last two seasons, and I think it’s unfair to cite that as a drawback when, to a degree, it’s subjective anyway.

    Other than that I pretty much agree with what you wrote (though I did like the Oldtown scene a lot). Stunning season finale and rightfully at the top of your list.


    • encyclops
      June 28, 2016 @ 5:15 am

      I’m baffled too, because I buy pretty much everything Harington and Clarke do and say, but find Dinklage to be the inconsistent one. He’s had some tremendous moments, really excellent ones, but also some clunkers. E.g. I didn’t believe him at all in the Hand of the Queen scene. To be fair, neither the dialogue nor the direction were helping him along. The scene still worked for me, but that was all on Clarke, and the fact that I wanted it to happen.

      I keep assuming, probably naively, that Jon’s the guy Dany’s saving herself for. But now that we presumably have confirmation he’s her nephew it’s a bit more awkward, isn’t it? I was trying to think who might be left to pick up the marriage of alliance thing. Bran? Will he even be old enough before the end of this timey-wimey saga?


      • Jarl
        June 28, 2016 @ 7:42 am

        I believe in the books they’re only like 3 years apart, her and Bran.


      • SpaceSquid
        June 28, 2016 @ 8:00 am

        Why would Jon and Dany be awkward? A cousin is a step removed from standard Targ incest, they’ve never actually met, and Dany can no longer have children. Which means it’s fine from the perspective of both Westeros and Westermarck, and any genetic issues are sidestepped as well.

        More generally, I loved it too. As Phil notes, there’s some teleport issues here, but I think the problem here is less that it doesn’t make sense and more that there’s an obvious time gap somewhere around the two-thirds mark that would ruin the momentum if acknowledged and makes thing seem disjointed if ignored. It’s not just Varys, it’s the fact the Tyrell and Martell fleets (or at least some fraction of them) are with Dany too, or that Jaime gets from the Twins to KL so quickly, or that apparently the whole North has time to gather at Winterfell, or that there’s time for a bird to fly from KL to Sunspear, etc. etc. etc.

        The biggest problem I had with the episode was how uncomforable Arya’s scene made me. Yes, I’m sure that was part of the point, but seeing her graduate to full-on Titus Andronicus levels felt like a step too far. All that kept me from wanting to switch off and go lie down was imagining Hot Pie running out and yelling “Arry; these crusts are for shit!”

        (Speaking of the old gang; do the Westerosi succession rules mean Gendry is now the true king? Someone make a bull’s-head crown and start scanning the horizon for rowboats.)


        • SpaceSquid
          June 28, 2016 @ 8:15 am

          “Cousin” should be “nephew”, natch.


        • Dan
          June 28, 2016 @ 5:33 pm

          The season could definitely have done with being HBO standard 13 episodes.


        • encyclops
          June 29, 2016 @ 6:15 pm

          Why would Jon and Dany be awkward?

          I don’t have a problem with it personally. I was thinking it might be a bridge too far for the general audience, but then I remembered some of the other stuff people seem surprisingly okay with (even Jaime/Cersei, whose incest is presumably considered a feature of their general villainy and is apparently frowned upon by most of Westeros, seem to get a pass from fans of the show), so you’re probably right.

          I sympathize with you re: Arya, even if I don’t empathize. It’s sad, but I think she’s probably beyond the power of hugs at this point, so I’m surrendering to enjoying her savagery. I’ve done the same with Dany. It’s a testament to how revolting they made the High Sparrow and his cronies (without actually making them seem hypocritical or venal — Septa Unella’s sadism seems probable, but never explicit) that Cersei’s mass murder actually seemed satisfying too. Maybe I’m just a monster these days.


  4. Ozman Jones
    June 28, 2016 @ 1:53 pm

    Kit Harington; I’ve never had a real problem with his acting. The part of Jon Snow calls for brooding, conflicted and stoic and he pulls that off as well as needed to serve the story. Unlike, say, the actress playing Lyanna Mormont, who’s performance I personally found the closest to cringe-worthy for many a season. Sure, he’s no Dinklage or Pryce, but then neither is most of the rest of the cast. At least we should all be thankful he’s not bloody awful.

    Although, perhaps his true value to the series lies in another direction as my wife and sister, both long term aficionados of the show, vocally threatened to do things to his person that would make Ros the prostitute blush and the Night’s King wonder if there would be anything left of Jon to fight when he got there.

    So, moving on. Thanks for another entertaining season’s worth of write-ups, Phil. I admit that my attention to Eruditorum wandered after the conclusion of the main Who journey, but the GoT stuff brought me back, and the added material from the rest of the contributors has kept me around. So thanks to you and all of the crew for creating such an entertaining site.

    Anyway, I’m off to watch The Winds of Winter again to pick up all the subtleties I missed the first time around.


  5. Aylwin
    September 20, 2016 @ 2:25 pm

    “Transition is by irony, from the crowd leadenly mouthing “Long may she reign!” to the Targaryen armada”, shurely.


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