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Game of Thrones Book Club | Spoiler Discussion of “Hardhome”



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Jessica Liese (@HaymakerHattie) and Antonio Mazzaro (@acmazzaro) are filling in for Josh and Terri for week eight of the GAME OF THRONES BOOK CLUB season five coverage. Topics covered include: who has the bigger claim for revenge against Ramsay Bolton, Jon’s excursion to Hardhome, secret Targaryens, the origins of the myth of the Night’s King, and much more.
SPOILER WARNING: The GAME OF THRONES BOOK CLUB podcasts are meant for people who have read George R.R. Martin’s novels that HBO takes its cues from. Proceed with caution!

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  • Trixie02

    Great job, Jessica and Antonio! I have not reached the end of “A Feast for Crows”, but I don’t mind being spoiled. I really enjoyed your analysis. (Would love the audio books).

    Crazier theory: The Night’s King is Jon’s father.

    • HomerBrannon1

      I love that theory. I mean, no way in hell it’s correct, but I love it.

      • Trixie02

        It certainly would explain why the bastards are all named “Snow.” :)

        • HomerBrannon1

          Oh yeah, well what if the Night’s King is Jon’s mother. Think about it. Actually, don’t think about it, that’s stupid.

  • hockeyfan183

    Bowen Marsh is in show all season 5 so there’s no way he won’t stab Jon. He’s always against Jon. Look at the show’s wiki what he did in show. There was also scene with Lord Commander (Snow), First Ranger (Thorne), First Builder (Yarwyck), First Steward (Marsh) altogether.

  • TP222

    Loved it! Re: Frost king: Mind blown.

  • You guys knocked it out of the park. Fantastic work. Great theory Hannah, I would be so much more on board with it than Jon having anything to do with Dany or her dragons tbh.

  • Jess Ricker

    Such a great podcast this week! I love the idea of Jon being rezzed by the Night’s King… I wouldn’t be surprised if Jon (who has the only other hero’s arc in the book aside from Dany) winds up being the villain. That would be classic GRRM subversion and a real mindfck for book and show fans alike….

  • LosPollosHermanos

    Great job guys, really enjoyed this week’s episode.

    Would love to hear from you guys again.

    I think you guys lurk the ASOAIF reddit as much as I do, ha.

    • Jess Ricker

      I am also a serial ASOIAF reddit lurker…. CLEGANEBOWL- get hype

  • Old Nan

    Terrific podcast! Really enjoyed the discussion, especially the enthusiasm level after what I thought was the best episode of the series.
    My silly Theon redemption theory: Theon helps Sansa escape. Ramsey finds out and gleefully initiates Ramsey-hunt. Sansa fights back valiantly with pilfered item, is overmatched, Brienne appears to assist, Ramsey looks to Reek to help him, Theon administers coup de grace.
    Another thought re Selyse pushing Shireen into the fire: What if the sacrifice is what reanimates Jon?
    Lastly: No one ever mentions the ice dragons.

  • HomerBrannon1

    This season is so backloaded. It took seven episodes to get to the top of the hill, but now it’s going to race down the other side. With “Hardhome” we got ice, this week we get fire.

  • Jeff Belanger

    Good podcast, but it was more like an open discussion about the entire season rather than “Hardhome”. It felt like it should have been a completely separate podcast.

  • MustardCannon

    Best book club yet! Get these two a GOT podcast, ASAP!

  • GeekFurious

    I feel like I should be collecting royalties on “stabby-stab fun-time gang” and any and all derivatives.

    Anyway, I don’t think Jon will be resurrected by the Night’s King. I think, tomorrow night, that Mel will return to The Wall… resurrect Jon when he is killed in the finale (she may resurrect him in 6.01)… and that Jon will rise up as GOT’s version of the Man in Black… wielding a flaming sword as Not-Jon.

  • Reynaldo Hernandez Aponte

    Great podcast. I’d totally to a book club, book club podcast with you guys, I miss the same characters, where are the Greyjoys?In the books you have this constant state of war thanks to them, plus the North shenanigans, all this chaos and the impending army of death encroaching on all of them. Oh well I’ll have to take the show for what it is, at least we finally had Walkers in armor. Anyway yes I would hope GRR gets to finish his story at his pace, it’s the main reason I’m so passionate in my general dislike of this season so far. Heh I started out a show fan, read all the books before season 3, now I hate most of season 5 because of the book inadequacies… what kind of fan am I?Love the podcast.

  • I think the inciting incident was the birth of John Snow.

    • Laws

      This was a weird conversation. The books have *implied* and Martin has *said* that Dany birthing dragons back into the world was the inciting incident, however, it seems that the walkers were walking around prior to that.

  • I think Sansa is going to use the mystery weapon to defend her self against Miranda and that will anger Ramsey and cause him to lash out at Sansa an that is when Reek will snap to Theon and kill/confront Ramsey.

  • Daniel Ahonen

    Just 30mins through the podcast, but i have to comment about Person of Interest having so many spots on IMDB’s Top 15 rated episodes.

    It starts out pretty boringly and almost every episode in first season is “week by week” case, but from season two it really picks up and they start move plot forward more quickly. Last two season have been excellent. They have some mediocre episodes, but also some pretty epic episodes, which can be seen from top spots on IMDB.

    “If-Then-Else” (9.9 on IMDB) is truly a masterpiece. If i had to chose between “Hardhome” and “If-Then-Else”, I couldn’t really decide. Shows are so different that it’s almost impossible to choose between them. Anyways, would definetly recommend POI for everybody. It has small, but loyal fanbase, which usually means a good show.

    This podcast seems refreshing and great so far. Good job! :)

    • Pink Pearl

      I had to go look it up to see if that’s one I saw (like I said on the podcast, my husband is a Person of Interest fan) and yes, I agree, that is a pretty great piece of television!

    • Derek Overman

      It’s funny, I just was listening to the book club podcast, and was taken aback at your laughter that Person of Interest gets so many high scores on IMDB. I, like Daniel, believe that Person of Interest is a masterful show. It doesn’t get nearly the love that it deserves. I will agree that it takes a while to really get deep into the show, but even with the first season being mostly case of the week stuff, it puts in enough juicy backstory that it keeps you engaged. By the end of the 2nd season, it takes off, and hasn’t let up since. I will agree that there are some slow eps and 1 or 2 filler eps, but overall season 3 and season 4 are some of the best season of TV I have watched ever. I had to disagree when you said that the worst episodes of GOT are better than the best episodes of POI. Simply not even close to the truth. Season 3 and Season 4 have some of my favorite eps of tv I have seen in years, while season 5 of GOT has been mostly meh, besides HARDHOME.
      Great podcast though, I learn a lot from you guys, and love the book spoilers, as I am not a book reader of the series. The spoilers do nothing to ruin my enjoyment of watching this show.

      • Pink Pearl

        Opinions can’t be untrue! Also, despite my having enjoyed the worst episode of GoT more than the best one of PoI, I think our incredulity was more due to the fact that we don’t associate PoI with a rabid fan base the way we do prestige television like Breaking Bad and GoT than it was necessarily a commentary on the show being bad. It’s not. I like it when I catch it. (I think Jim Caviezel is kind of wooden but the plot usually makes up for him.) If it ever comes up on a podcast I do again, I’ll sing the words I made up to the theme song.

        Also, thank you for the kind words about the podcast itself. AND READ THE BOOKS. They’re SO GOOD. I was probably hyperbolic on a few other things I said (namely my mockery of PoI) but I was not at all hyperbolic about the fact that these are the best books I’ve read in ten years!

        • Derek Overman

          It’s no biggie, and I would love to read the books, but as a single father of a 7 year old I am lucky to get an hour a night to watch the few shows that I watch let alone read the 1000 pg books that George RR has written. That is why I enjoy your show so much, because it fills in a lot of the questions that the show doesn’t really do a great job addressing. I also learn about Lady Stoneheart and some of really cool sounding ideas that the show will probably not get to.
          With POI and Game of thrones, the one thing I really appreciate is that both shows greatly reward repeat viewing. I caught a lot of stuff that I missed when I sat down last summer and winter and rewatched both shows, it makes the experience of show watching that much better. Plus both shows do a great job at taking characters that I don’t like, like Jamie L, and turning them into totally likeable characters.
          I will say that I am probably more critical of Game of Thrones than I am of Person of interest mostly due to the length of the seasons and a feeling of GoT kind of is bloated with characters I don’t really care about. The Dorne stuff this season has been really poor, and I like Arya, but her storyline has gone nowhere that really interests me. There also hasn’t been enough Brienne. Like I said in the previous post, this season has been Meh, with only 1 real standout episode, 2 really good eps, and the rest just meh. Still, this show is one of 3 shows I currently watch where I have to watch the episode the day it airs. Those 3 shows are GoT, Person of Interest and Hannibal. I watch Walking dead but it is a show that fluctuates from great to awful too much in one season. I also watch True Detective, and I liked the first season a lot, but Hannibal is much better in my opinion. Sorry for the rant, and once again, thanks for the podcast and the response, you guys really make the episodes much better with your concise, informative, and funny podcasts. I listen to Afterbuzz’s show,but they can’t hold your collect jock’s.