Game of Thrones

Top 5 Favourite Characters in Game of Thrones – Number 5

 

It’s a tie between

  1. Sansa Stark

Sansa 1

I read a ‘joke’ in Reddit about how the Stark Children reunion looked like.

Jon Snow says: I started off as a Crow and ended up as the King in the North.

Arya says: I started off as a street urchin and ended up as No One.

Bran says: I started off as a quadriplegic and ended up as the three eyed raven.

Sansa says: I got raped by different men and now … shit.

This is one of the most insensitive manner to portray Sansa’s struggles in GoT. Sansa Stark has had a remarkable character arch from the first season till the latest. From a pretty little spoilt girl who got delighted at the prospect of marrying Jeffrey Baratheon and bearing his children to becoming the Lady of the Winterfell the journey has been arduous.  She has spent some of her formative years in Kings Landing, under the watchful eyes of Cersei. But at the same time Cersei gave some sage advice to her. Take for example that conversation between Sansa and Cersei after Sansa becomes a woman.

Sansa 2

She has seen her father getting killed brutally, been shown the prospect of marriage with or married to six different male characters – Joffrey Baratheon, Loras Tyrell, Tyrion Lannister, Robin Arryn, Peter Baelish, Roose Bolton, she has seen Joffrey bleed to death, she has seen Lysa Arryn being thrown down the Moon Door by Baelish, inappropriately touched by Baelish, been raped by Roose Bolton, been psychologically tortured by Joffrey and by the courtiers of Kings Landing. These circumstances are absolutely trying for a Princess who was in fact groomed to be the next Queen of Kings Landing.

She has grown stronger as each year passed by and has now become an able administrator. She keeps her cards close to her chest. Even Peter Baelish is not able to have the hold on her that he thought he will continue to have. She has outgrown all her obstacles

SAnsa 3
The Lady of Winterfell

In the latest episode, when Peter keeps warning about Cersei and says he knows Cersei the best and Sansa retorts, “You don’t know Cersei better than anyone here” implying that Cersei has had considerable influence on her during her time in the Capital. Sansa, is now a smart, political savvy woman who means business. For all we know, she might end up the Queen of the Kings Landing as planned by her parents.

  1. and
Jaime
May Be, its Maybelline.

Jaime Lannister

 

If there is a tragic hero in the Game of Thrones, that is Jaime Lannister.

You know what they call him – The King Slayer, The Oath Breaker, Man without Honour. His father was most proud of him though. No matter what others may brand him, this magnificent being called his father is proud of him. I think that kept him on. That and his love for Cersei. The most handsome man in the Kings Landing likes no other women than his sister. He is honourable in his own weird way.

Jaime Lannister is a Prince. Son of one of the most powerful man in Westeros and behaved with that arrogance only the Lord-lings possess. Yet he is not a completely hopeless person like many others. His feelings are genuine. He is not an innately cruel person. True, he may not have a grand ideology like Tyrion that guides his life. His concerns are immediate – his sister, his children, and his family’s survival. In that way, Jaime is a lot like Tywin, who has put his family’s honour at the top of his concern.

Jaime, really is not the inhuman predator that he is made out to be. His strength and flaw is Love. The things he does for love. Like pushing a 9-year old from the top of a castle. Or silently watching Cersei transform into the Mad Queen. Or standing by and doing nothing while Tyrion is made to suffer for a crime that he did not do. Or having a change of heart and finally helping his little brother escape his predicament. His love for those around him has dictated his actions.

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He comes across as a heavily misunderstood man overshadowed by his father’s imperious image. He himself quite can’t bring about to be assertive in front of Tywin compared to Tyrion or even Cersei. He was the Golden Boy of his father.

One of his best moments has been with Brianne of Tarth. I really loved their track. The kind of mutual respect they had for each other, I think, was rare in Jaime’s life.

Jaime’s is a cursed life. With an irreparable black mark on his moral by killing the King he had sworn to protect, by loving that one woman he is not supposed to love, by not able to love his own children like how he wants to love, and losing his one precious asset which defines him – his right hand, by losing his children one after the other in front of his own eyes, he has become a tragic figure.

Jaime 1

 

 

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Twelve Dancing Princess, Hawaa Hawaa and Taraf De Haidouks

 

Here I was, minding my business, reading some random nonsense, adoring some Oviya memes, and I heard this Hawa Hawa song. One of the more brilliant songs in Rockstar, part of the charm is that the song tells a tale. Such songs which has some story are some of my favourites, including BoneyM’s Rasputin. Hawa Hawa has adapted the Grimm Brothers’ 12 Dancing Princess where the queen does to the Dhozak* every night and dances like wind. So I read this blog and came to know that even the music is in a very east European genre. Smitten, I checked out some videos and stumbled upon Tara De Haidouks Turcească. I mean, pure magic. I have never heard such a powerful stream of music before. More on this later. (?)

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The Sky That Shields From A Devouring Vastness

In his “Introduction” to Paul Bowles’ Collected Stories (1979,) Gore Vidal ranked the short stories as “among the best ever written by an American”, writing: “the floor to this ramshackle civilization that we have built cannot bear much longer our weight. It was Bowles’s genius to suggest the horrors which lie beneath that floor, as fragile, in its way, as the sky that shelters us from a devouring vastness”.

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A Cat That Really Was Gone

Boney M one of my mother’s favourite Bands has a very peppy song in their album about Rasputin. Though I have heard it on and off through out my childhood, I really sat and listened to it yesterday and it seems I can’t stop listening to it ever since (even as I write this).

The song is about a Raw Raw Man Rasputin with a flaming glow in his eyes, who was not just the Russian Queen’s Lover, not simply the greatest love-making machine in Russia, he was also a cat that really was gone

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Some description!

The song narrates the rise and fall of Russian mystic and self-proclaimed holy man Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin.

The song’s final stanza is devoted to the episode where he gets killed. Though it has been told over and over, it is worth countless re-telling.

Some men of higher standing – Prince Felix Yusupov, the Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich, and the right-wing politician Vladimir Purishkevich – invited Rasputin to Yusupovs’ Moika Palace. Yusupov Palace

He arrived at Midnight.

They took him to the basement.

They gave him tea and cakes and three glasses of wine, poisoned with cyanide.

As the song says, he drank it and felt nothing.

Around 2:30, they got fed up, asked Rasputin to tell his prayers and shot him once on the chest.

Man did not die.He was shot again in the Palace courtyard, where the action was now taking palace.

He fell on the thick snow.

carved-oak-door-of-the-yusupov-palace-in-st-petersburg
Yusupov’s Moika Palace Front Door Made of Oak

Rasputin’s dead body was now wrapped in cloth and was taken to the Petrovsky Bridge and dropped into the Malaya Nevka River.

The next day, two passing workmen saw blood stains on the bridge span, bridge panels, railing and bridge supports.

On New Year, Rasputin’s body was found by the police near the bridge.

Later on, Tsarina Alexandra buried his body in a town Tsarskoye Selo (A world heritage site) , about 24km from St Petersburg.

During the Russian Revolution a group of workers from St Petersburg uncovered the remains and burned the body in a nearby woods.

I quote wikipedia now –

“As the body was being burned, Rasputin appeared to sit up in the fire. His apparent attempts to move and get up thoroughly horrified bystanders. ”

Reason for this phenomena –

“The effect can probably be attributed to improper cremation;[citation needed] since the body was in inexperienced hands, the tendons were probably not cut before burning. Consequently, when the body was heated, the tendons shrank, forcing the legs to bend and the body to bend at the waist, resulting in its appearing to sit up”

His official autopsy report disappeared during the Stalin era.

Recent evidence suggests that neither was he poisoned, nor drowned to death.

Reports suggest that Rasputin had been systematically beaten and attacked with a bladed weapon; but, most importantly, there were discrepancies regarding the number and caliber of handguns used.

There is also a theory that British Intelligence agents, along with friendly Yusupov, who is an alumni of Oxford University, were behind Rasputin’s death.

Reason – He was urging the Tsar to to make a separate Peace Treaty with Germany and withdraw from the war. This would have upset British plan to keep Germany occupied on both fronts.

Rasputin’s daughter emigrated to France and then to US. Her memoirs paint a saintly picture of Rasputin.

Dead_Rasputin
Oh Those Russians!

Rasputin is a very intriguing figure in world history. His story will always draw interest from various corners since his life was a manifestation of power, politics, lust, intrigue, jealousy and murder. Its impossible to find his story boring.

I am very much looking forward to Leonardo DeCaprio’s portrayal of this very interesting man.