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Game of Thrones - Summary of the 15 Minutes Sneak Peek at TCA Press Event

HBO had hoped to show the pilot here at the winter TCA press tour, but it isn’t quite ready yet. So they put together 15 minutes of clips from what looks to be the first three episodes. And it is, in a word, amazing.

Before the sneak peek they were showing still shots, mostly ones we’ve already seen, but some new ones of Catelyn, one of Bran and a few with the direwolf pups. My favorite being Robb picking up Grey Wind after just finding him. HBO told me these photos will be released soon.

Unfortunately, the sneak peek will not be available to the public due to music licensing issues (the music contained parts of the scores of Gladiator and Lord of the Rings) and some incomplete CGI work (although I didn’t notice anything amiss). So this report will have to do for now.

The sneak peek starts off much the same as the third teaser, with Ned and his sons at the execution of Will. This clip is slightly longer than the one in the trailer and has Jon saying to Bran, “Don’t look away, father will know if you do.”

Cut to Ned and Catelyn in the godswood. We didn’t get a detailed shot of the heart tree, but what I saw looked much better than the version in the original pilot. White trunk, red leaves. Didn’t see the face though.

Anyway, Catelyn tells of the news of Jon Arryn’s death. Flash to the dead body of Jon Arryn. Then a new scene between Cersei and Robert.

Cersei: “Without a hand, things will fall to pieces.”
Robert: “I suppose this is where you tell me to give the job to Jaime.”

Then, another new scene, Jaime consoling Cersei in the throne room of the Red Keep. Tells her not to worry about who the new Hand might be (paraphrasing here). They will come out on top, they are Lannisters. Cut back to Catelyn and Ned discussing in the godswood. Catelyn: “You can always say no, Ned.”

Cut to Bran climbing the tower. Jaime and Cersei having sex (fully clothed I might add, surprisingly enough). Cersei sees Bran. Jaime goes to the window, grabs Bran by the arm.

Jaime (to Bran): “Are you mad?”
Cersei: “He knows about us.”
Jaime: “The things I do for love.”

Cut to the next morning. Tyrion at breakfast with his siblings. Tells of Bran’s survival. Jamie and Cersei share a concerned look. Cersei mocks Tyrion for wanting to go see the Wall.

Cersei: “I feel you may even take the Black.”
Tyrion: “And become celibate? The whores would be mourning from Dorne to Casterly Rock.”

This scene seemed the easiest on the eyes. Like it was so natural (the hallmark of really good actors), just a family of Lannisters enjoying breakfast; I no longer has ANY worries about Dinklage’s accent, as he goes through about 3 of them in this single scene, depending on whether he’s playing the prankster uncle, the casually concerned brother, or the smarter-than-thou Imp. Tyrion feels to me like someone who is accustomed to performing. Even Myrcella and Tommen fit seamlessly in. I’m glad Aimee Richardson fought to move up from the “stand in” position she inhabited the first time they shot the pilot. They really do look like a family. But the standout here is Tyrion. Dinklage FTW.
And no one quite does angry worry quite like Lena Headey. Her facial tics are excellent. I too see why they hired her.

Cut to a scene, which I believe is not in the books, Ned talking to Jon as he sets out for the Wall with Benjen and company. Tells him to serve with honor or something to that effect. Then to the Wall, we see the Old Bear and Maester Aemon speaking with Tyrion, pleading for more men. Aemon looks suitably old and the Old Bear looks suitably badass. We got our first glimpse of the Wall. It is an impossibly huge sheet of ice, just as described in the books. We all agreed, it was one of the most impressive shots from the preview. The Wall looks …. awesome. And real. It looks real. Maester Aemon looks… well, like he may sprout fangs and hiss at us any moment. Querulous little toothless mouth.

Back to Winterfell, Luwin delivers Lysa’s note as Ned and Catelyn lie in bed together (interesting sidenote, Luwin’s chain-link collar is very large and falls all the way below his waist). Cat reveals its contents, “She’s fled the capital. She says Jon Arryn was murdered by the Lannisters.” Then the scene we saw in the Inside Game of Thrones feature, Cat pleading with Ned to remain in Winterfell.

Catelyn: “Seventeen years ago, you rode off to war with Robert Baratheon. And now you’re leaving me again.”
Ned: “I have no choice.”
Catelyn (in tears): “That’s what men always say when honor calls, that’s what you tell your families, tell yourselves. You do have a choice, and you’ve made it.”

Cut to King’s Landing. A far away CGI shot of the Red Keep, which looks great. A cluster of tall towers and one huge archway leading to a solitary tower (The Tower of the Hand?). Another new scene, Ned walks into the throne room, finds Jaime seated on the steps beneath the Iron Throne (sound familiar?). The Iron Throne is very impressive. Swords jutting up the back like a huge, metal peacock. Ned and Jaime verbally spar.

Ned: “That’s some handsome armor you’re wearing. Not a scratch on it.”
Jaime: “People have been swinging at me for years, but they always seem to miss.”
Ned: “You’ve chosen your opponents wisely then.”
Jaime: “I have a knack for it.”

They clearly are playing up the Jaime vs. Ned angle. Cut back to Winterfell, we see the assassination attempt. Summer arrives just in time. There is a satisfying crunch. Cat reveals the murder attempt to Robb, Theon, Luwin and Rodrik, says she believes the Lannisters are behind it. Another new Jaime and Cersei scene, this one in Cersei’s bedchamber.

Jaime: “The boy won’t talk and if he does I will kill him. I will kill everyone, if I have to, until we are the only two people left in the Seven Kingdoms.”

Robert and Ned on the way to King’s Landing. Robert talks of Dany’s marriage to Drogo. Cut to Dany meeting Drogo. Cut back to Ned and Robert still discussing the Targaryen threat. Robert worries about Drogo’s army of over 100,000 men, Ned remarks that even if they had a million men it wouldn’t matter, they don’t have any ships. Robert then says his “there’s a war coming Ned” line. Cut to the Cersei and Ned confrontation in the Red Keep. Ned: “I was trained to kill my enemies.” Cersei: “So was I.” Cut to a similar scene, this time Cersei talking to Robert. Robert: “Targaryen’s ruled for centuries, and yet, here I am, King Robert Baratheon.”

Cut back to Essos. Viserys and Illyrio are talking at the wedding. Viserys asks when he will get to invade Westeros, Illryio replies when the Dothraki omens say it is time. Viserys: “I piss on Dothraki omens. I’ve waited seventeen years to get my throne back.” Then shots of Dany and Drogo on their wedding night, intercut with Doreah training Dany. Doreah: “Out there he is the mighty Khal, but in this tent, he belongs to you.” Then we see Dany and Jorah’s exchange when she commands the horde to stop.

And then, the best scene of the preview, between Viserys and Dany.

Viserys: “What is this? Dothraki rags? You’re going to dress me now? This stinks of manure. All of it!”
Dany: “It was a gift.”
Viserys: “Next you are going to braid me!”
Dany: “I will never braid you, you haven’t won any victories.”
Viserys: “You are a horselord slut and now you’ve woken the dragon!”
Viserys slaps her and pushes her to the ground. Dany fights back. Grabs a metal belt and slaps Viserys in the face with it. Viserys looks horrified.
Dany: “I am a khaleesi of the Dothraki! And if you raise your hands at me again, you will no longer have hands.”

Cut to the scene where Dany speaks with Jorah and finally realizes that Viserys will never win back the Iron Throne. Jorah: “A wise child.” Dany: “I am no child.” Then Dany and Drogo laying in bed together, naked. Dany tells Drogo, in subtitled Dothraki, that she will be having a boy.

The preview ends with the now familiar Old Nan voiceover and a quick montage of shots. Scenes from the prologue, the dead wilding bodies, shown from above, are arranged in some sort of pattern or symbol. We also see what looked like, to me, a hand of a wight grabbing Gared’s head.

A shot of Joffrey slowly drawing Golden Tooth across Mycah’s cheek, drawing blood. And Joff is sickly fascinated by his handiwork. He enjoys this. Another good hire.

Dinklage being thrown into the sky cell. Robert orders the assassination of Dany and her unborn child. Ned says that assassinating them is without honor, Robert yells back, “You think it’s honor keeping the peace? It’s fear. Fear and blood!” The preview ends with the shot of Ned with Cat and Luwin in the background and Aemon’s voice, “The Stark words are always right eventually, winter is coming. This one will be long… and dark things will come with it.”

Source: Winter Is Coming

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