Monday, December 12, 2011
. . . And the Cold Winds are Rising.
Eh? Not as strong a tagline as I would have liked, but I'll take it. Even if it was never uttered in the books. Anyway, THE DAY HAS ARRIVED. Finally, after so long a wait, the first teaser with any actual footage has been aired for the next season of HBO's Game of Thrones! It aired just before the season finale of Boardwalk Empire last night, and it was GLORIOUS!
Watch it for yourself below, and I'll comment afterwards:
“My brother left no trueborn heirs.
By right, and birth, and blood,
I do this day lay claim,
To the Iron Throne of Westeros.
Let all true men declare their loyalty.
The Iron Throne is mine by right.
They will bend the knee,
Or I will destroy them.
The cold winds are rising.”
Whoa! We only get to see a small amount of new footage, but it was enough to whet this fan's appetite. How about you?
I feel I need to provide a little context for what was just seen, though, as I think it might be difficult to follow for those who are not readers of the books. Or for those to whom the last season is a barely remembered blur. Heh, heh . . . it happens.
First off, the man you hear talking is Stannis Baratheon, younger brother to King Robert (who died in the first season), and older brother to Renly. Renly, if you recall, is the guy who served as King Robert's Master of Laws on the Small Council, and who urged Ned to seize the throne before Queen Cersei could place her illegitimate son on it. Ned, of course, refused and Renly fled King's Landing to marshal his own forces. Both he and Stannis lay equal claim to the Iron Throne now, under the pretense that the new King Joffrey was no seed of their brother Robert. The two younger siblings, in turn, hate each other and seek to eliminate their rival despite the blood they share.
Yeah, it's getting positively Shakespearean up in this piece!
Although it is Stannis's voice you hear doing the narration (acted by the talented Stephen Dillane), the first person you actually see in the clip is Renly Baratheon, astride a horse and wearing the stag crown of his noble house. The next scene--a night time one--shows Stannis himself, accompanied by his wife Selyse and a host of soldiers. These two are new to the show, and were never seen in the first season. Stannis was only ever mentioned by name on several occasions, including once during that now infamous grooming/blowjob scene between Lord Renly and his buddy, Ser Loras Tyrell--aka, the Knight of Flowers.
You remember THAT, now, don't you?
Next we get a series of one-shots featuring many faces you should all be familiar with by now. Of particular note is the quick shot of a short-haired Arya Stark, who should have a sizable role this season if they are closely following the book. Yay!
Pay particular attention to what you're hearing near the very end of the clip (at the 0:30 mark). That's three horn blasts from the top of the Wall. This is significant, if you don't know. One horn blast means a Ranger of the Night's Watch is returning from patrol beyond the Wall. Two blasts means a Wildling attack is imminent.
But three blasts . . . well, that means the White Walkers are approaching. *shudder*
Damn, this season is going to be BAD ASS! Are you as excited as I am?