The Price of Power is Abomination: Jeyne, Lysa, and the Neverborn

Introduction: A Bride Fit for a King

There are discrepancies and mistakes in A Song of Ice and Fire. Inevitable in a series of this size. One such mistake – infamous for a time in the fandom – has to do with the child-bearing suitability of a particular pair of hips.

When Catelyn Stark first meets her daughter-in-law Jeyne Westerling, she describes her thusly:

“She was pretty, undeniably, with her chestnut curls and heart-shaped face, and that shy smile. Slender, but with good hips…”

When Jaime Lannister meets Jeyne – now a widow – a book later, his description conflicts:

“Jeyne was a willowy girl, no more than fifteen or sixteen, more awkward than graceful. She had narrow hips, breasts the size of apples, a mop of chestnut curls, and the soft brown eyes of a doe. Pretty enough for a child…”

Theories abounded for a time. Was this really Jeyne that Jaime met? Was it an impostor? A decoy?

As it turns out, it was a mistake. George R. R. Martin has said as much firsthand; secondhand reports confirm this, and later editions of A Feast for Crows remove Jaime’s reference to Jeyne’s hips entirely.

Both times, Jeyne is described in terms of her fertility and sexuality. She is either fecund or sterile, but there’s no room for her to be anything other than a vehicle for childbearing – and childbearing at the whims of her family, and those who rule her family.



Game of Thrones S7E04: “THE SPOILS OF WAR”

The unifying idea that ran under all  the stories in “The Spoils of War” was the return of magic – including both literal magic, like voodoo and dragons, and the magic of the story, as scattered plot threads are stitched back together like Beric Dondarrion’s flesh and bone.


Game of Thrones Season 7 Episode 1: Dragonstone

“DRAGONSTONE” felt very much like exactly what it was: the beginning of the end. The pieces are moving, the old plot threads are coming home to roost.

Overall, I liked this episode. I did. It set up the remaining six episodes of the season, it had some memorable scenes, and generally moved pretty smoothly.

Here’s what I really liked.


Game of Thrones S6E9: bubble of the bustards

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.


Game of Thrones S6E7: “The Broken Man”

Melisandre would have you believe that if an onion (or a show) is all bad, you should throw it out entirely. Samwell Tarly, though is perfectly happy to chop off the rot and enjoy the good bits of the onion. Let’s be more like Sam, when we talk about Game of Thrones. It’s not The Ultimate Television Show, but it also isn’t The Ultimate Betrayal. We move from one incredible scene to one baffling scene; great decision to questionable decision. And it’s those strong scenes that make the weak ones weaker. When you know how good this show can be -writing, directing, production – seeing it not be that good is even more disappointing/frustrating/whatever.

Alright, I think that’s enough of a spoiler shield. SPOILERS!


Game of Thrones S6E5: The Door

There is a canon, a pantheon, of nerd trigger phrases. You know the ones I mean. “This was a triumph…” “It’s a trap!” “Yer a lizard, Harry!” When someone quotes Monty Python or Portal or Star Wars, the room is required by Social Law to echo back some white noise – maybe laughter, maybe a followup quote, maybe just shouting that quote back at someone.

On May 22, 2016, “Hold the door!” entered that hallowed codex.