spoilers below the cut. also I feel like I should say – every week I do these. And they’re pretty much my first impressions. usually a week later i’ve changed my mind on some stuff.
more like the books are a stranger now am i right? because the show is so different? get it? that was pretty funny?
/end spoiler shield
To Hot Link Sunday. A new weekly feature where both Michael and Mikell contribute what they believe are the best things to read from the previous week! So dive on into these fresh hot links and let us know what you think!
Michael’s ASOIAF Highlights of the Week:
Hey all! I’m a mod on the /r/asoiaf subreddit, so I see a lot of good stuff come through the new queue. Here’s the highlights from the past week (and beyond. Since this is the first edition, I’m including some stuff that really should be in the highlights reel on merit alone).
First off…I’d be remiss to leave out the Best of 2015 awards for /r/asoiaf! The subreddit voted on 10 different categories with a look back at all of 2015. There’s some great stuff in there, whether it’s JoeMagician’s “A Cold Death in the Snow” theory or the insufferably memetic “Dany + Drogo = Tyrion” theory (seriously).
Sticking with reddit, on Jan 25 user jdylopa posted an insightful look into Arya’s story arc entitled “When people call Arya ‘No One,’ they miss the point of her arc.” I gotta say, I agree with jdylopa – Arya hasn’t lost her Stark-ness. Far from it.
Next up on reddit, we have a summary post from YezenIRL explaining his massive blog post series “The Weirwood Leviathan.” There are ASOIAF fans and there are ASOIAF fans, and YezenIRL is the latter. Is the writeup nutty in places? Absolutely. Does it make occasional, chilling sense? You betcha.
Moving beyond reddit, let’s also move beyond the limit of 1 week to give a shout-out to BryndenBFish’s Complete Notablog ASOIAF Resource. Here’s what this lunatic did – he went through the entire history of GRRM’s blog and compiled every comment and post that pertained to ASOIAF. Then he sorted them. It’s immensely useful and took immense effort, so check it out!
For those looking to re-read ASOIAF, look no further than the new “A FEAST WITH DRAGONS” combined reading order for Book 4 and 5. There are some great combined orders that already exist (see All Leather Must be Boiled), but this one’s got some great new tweaks and was made by a team of hardworking nerds in the internet factory!
Finally, everyone should go check out tumblr user PoorQuentyn’s “A Defense of Tyrion’s ADWD Storyline,” which just wrapped up this week but has been going for months. It’s a wonderfully-written, incisive, and altogether critical analysis of what’s going on in Tyrion’s chapters in book 5.
AND COMING NEXT WEEK…
VK will begin his contribution to the Hot Link Sunday Feature. He’s been hard at work at his other two jobs so that has kept him away from the site recently but don’t you fret his return is on the horizon!! His focus will mainly go into technology and gaming news, along with any opinion pieces he sees.
Sansa’s arc in Season 5 was without a doubt the most controversial arc in the history of the show. To many, it seemed like a step backwards. Season 4 ends with Sansa taking control of her own life, symbolized by creating a dress for her new identity. In Season 5, she goes to Winterfell…and is promptly reduced to a distressed damsel, held captive by a sadistic, twisted boy-heir. Many people saw it as an exploitative rehash of her story in seasons 1-3, using sexual violence and torture purely for shock value.
Hard to believe it’s the end of yet another season of Game of Thrones – and probably the most divisive season to date.
I’m going to go ahead and call it now: the last four episodes of this season (7, 8, 9, and 10) are going to be the strongest four consecutive episodes in the show so far. Holistically, at least. There are some seasons that don’t work, but overall 7 and 8 have been strong and 9 and 10 promise to (maybe) be even stronger.