Binge-watching Game of Thrones & the Snarkfest That Was Television Without Pity

Two things, which turn out to be related:

1) I have spent the last couple of weeks drowning in Game of Thrones, in attempt to quickly catch up on three seasons before the fourth season premiere this coming Sunday. I had avoided the series previously because I’m generally creeped out fantasy stuff (and separately, sci-fi stuff as well) and the first episode was loaded with creeps. I then learned that, as my friend warned me early on, that the creep factor would only go up as the series went on. Anyway, thanks to HBO playing three to four episodes a night for the last two weeks to hype up the season premiere, I am now captivated.  Also as a result of this rapid game of catch-up, I have viewed the Season 4 promo trailers approximately 1,000 times, and I'm pretty sick of hearing Daenerys telling me, "I will answer injustice with jyeeeeeeeeee-ustice."

2) Midweek last week I learned the greatest site ever, TelevisionWithoutPity (formerly Mighty Big TV) was closing shop (by decree of owner, NBC Universal) and worse, that the archives would be blacked out this Friday. I've been a fan of the site, which provides delightfully hilarious and well-written episode recaps of popular TV shows, since I started watching serial television back in the day with Dawson’s Creek. I lived for twop recaps to poke fun at Dawson’s giant forehead, Michael’s futile cries of “WAAAAAAAAAAAAALT” through what felt like three seasons of LOST, the ability of the skinny Marissa Cooper of The OC to hide behind a standing torch lamp by simply turning sideways. This was the internet at its best. And then twop got bought by BravoTV/NBC Universal, and here we are today, mourning a great loss. I imagine the decicsionmakers must’ve cited a need for operational streamlining, cost-cutting initiatives, trimming noncore operations, and refocusing on segments of competitive advantage.

This is all to say that while diving headfirst into GoT, I simultaneously and frantically read through every GoT recap for fear of losing it forever (um, I also downloaded all recaps for My So Called Life, Gilmore Girls, and The Wire only to learn on Wednesday that the archives will remain accessible -- phew! Time wasted but brilliance preserved.) So anyway, from my ongoing googledoc of funny things, I present highlights from GoT recaps I've consumed so far:

Daenerys freaks out at Jorah about having finally stood up to Viserys: “I hit him. I hit the dragon.” Jorah is unimpressed with that and says, “Your brother Rhaegar was the last dragon.” One thing this show requires is the ability to believe people when they describe the previous generation. Like, Rhaegar Targaryen is constantly being described as a mighty warrior, but the only Targaryens we know are these two skinny pale weirdoes.

The Dothraki are riding. On their horses. It’s probably safe to assume that any time we don’t see them, they’re doing something horse-related. Khal Drogo is at the front of the column, and he’s drooping in his saddle somewhat alarmingly. Daenerys seems worried about him. She rides up to ask what’s wrong, but she has to get through so many phrases like “My moon and stars” and “Who’s my little poopsie-doodle?” that before she can get to the question, he’s toppled all the way off the horse and onto the ground. This immediately causes problems, because in a horse-centric society, you probably want to be good at horses.

[Osha] looks and acts a lot like every Helena Bonham Carter character.

Tyrion tosses his purse to Mort, saying, “A Lannister always pays his debts.” When you think about it, the Lannisters must be in the habit of running up a lot of debt if they’re known for paying them all. I mean, if they just paid cash for everything, no one would know what would happen to a debt. But they’re incredibly rich. So maybe they just go around Wimpy-ing it up all the time, offering to pay on Tuesday for hamburgers acquired today, just so they can make a big deal out of paying for their hamburgers on Tuesday. It’s kind of like running up your credit rating.

Lord Baelish is called up next and thanked for his unification of the houses of Lannister and Tyrell. Joffrey grants Littlefinger the City of Baltimore and a guest spot on The Wire. [Note: Varys: "Shhhiiiiiiiiiiiiit!" -- Rachel.]

While digging, they uncover something with some symbols on it. Oh shit! They found a hatch! No, wait. It’s just a stone. Sam says the First Men made those marks, so he wants the stone. He’s very into the First Men. He’s kind of the Game of Thrones equivalent of somebody in our world who’s really into Game of Thrones.

Ygritte says she's never climbed the Wall, but Tormund's done it "half a hundred times." Just say fifty.

Renly introduces his wife, Margaery of House Tyrell. It’s pronounced “Marjorie.” But this is a fantasy story, so all the names have to be spelled as weirdly as possible. ‘

You can also tell it from the mysterious potion he’s giving to Tyrion, which will hopefully fix the problem Tyrion’s got where he says he hasn’t been able to “take a proper shit in days.” Now I’m worried that maybe I haven’t either. I mean, how do I know if it’s been proper enough?

--@monty_ashley

Are laughing aloud right now? Yes? Can we please get a Kickstarter campaign going to bring back televisionwithoutpity?

Alternatively: are you laughing aloud right now? No? Are you made of stone? Oh. You are.

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Tags: game of thrones, tv

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