I’m super happy about two things in this episode. Only Arya’s story seems to be going in the same general direction. Jon’s is very similar and Tyrion’s has just jumped half way into his story and missed, what I consider, crucial detail.
This article contains spoilers from the show and the books. Book spoilers have been hidden by default.
Summary and Comparison
There were some story-lines that stayed true to the novels, some that were changed a bit and some that were fast forwarded.
Jon Snow rejects Stannis’ offer to become Jon Stark. However, while some of his story is fast forward, the same essence remains. He takes charge as Lord Commander and he assigns duties to the men including his enemies, Janos Slynt and Allister Thorne. Slynt refuses and Jon has the opportunity to send a message to all his enemies in the Night’s Watch. He decapitates Slynt in the square at Castle Black.View Spoiler »Jon’s story here is condensed but it’s pretty much the same. Plus, I love that Janos Slynt get’s what was coming to him. « Hide Spoiler
Tommen and Margaery get married and consummate their marriage. Margaery tries to manipulate Tommen to get his mother to return to Casterly Rock. Margaery and Cersei have an awkward conversation about appreciation for each other but it’s clear to see that neither is as honest with their words as it seems.View Spoiler »In the book, Tommen isn’t really a character with a voice. He is about 9 years old. He isn’t old enough to consummate his marriage. There are no passages with conversation between Margaery and Tommen so we have no idea what they would have talked about. Also, Margaery is much older in the show than she was in the books. Wee also saw that Cersei’s reaction to Margaery is mostly just paranoia as there is not much justification, other than Magge the Frog’s prophecy, to fuel her jealousy. « Hide Spoiler
Tyrion and Varys arrive in Volantis. While there, Tyrion begs to go outside the palaquin so help his sanity. They visit a brothel but Tyrion finds that he cannot go with the prostitute he has chosen. We also see Ser Jorah having a drink. Later on, when Tyrion is drunk and relieving himself, Jorah captures him and tells him he’s taking him to the queen.View Spoiler »The shows has completely taken out a story-line line involving Griff. I’m not sure that I should disclose the story here as yet just in case some of you none readers are reading here. But, the missing story line changes the game of thrones completely. Also, Tyrion has no problem with his prostitute other than feeling sorry for her being a slave after seeing whip scars on her back. « Hide Spoiler
In Braavos, Arya starts her practice towards becoming a faceless man. A part of this, is letting go of who she is. She must become no one. She eventually get’s rid of everything she has, except Needle, the sword that Jon had made for her. Instead of throwing it in the water, she hides it.View Spoiler »Similarly in the books, Arya get’s rid of all her belongings but hides Needle. I am glad for this little piece of the story. It really makes me feel like they won’t change her story – too much at least. I am very interested in seeing where her story will lead. « Hide Spoiler
Brienne and Pod’s story-line has changed but she does share with him the reason why she supported Renly Baratheon.View Spoiler »I’m glad that she shares the story with Pod, which is true to the book. It gives some good background story for Brienne that we haven’t really seen in the show. « Hide Spoiler
Sansa and Littlefinger travel to Winterfell, where she will be marrying Ramsay Bolton. At first, Sansa is appalled that Littlefinger would make such a proposal, however he tells her that she will always be running and this is the best way to get revenge for her family.View Spoiler »Sansa’s story actually ends in A Feast for Crow, with Sansa being a meek Alayne Stone. It is actually a fake Arya that goes to marry Ramsay Bolton. I welcome this change. Many readers think Sansa to be a naive fool. This gives her a good opportunity to avenge her family but more so, to redeem herself. « Hide Spoiler
There is only one thing in this episode that really upsets me and that is the fast forwarding of Tyrion’s story. I know that they are trying to cut back on characters but this change would really change the power-play dynamics of the story. Overall though, I think it’s a good direction for the show.