Jamie Adair

Jamie Adair is the editor of History Behind Game of Thrones, a website about the history behind George RR Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" novels and the hit TV show, "Game of Thrones."

Jessica Henwick-Photo Helen Sloan HBO

Sons of the Harpy, Recap: Episode 4, Season 5

To use a bad medieval metaphor, Game of Thrones is truly beginning to throw down the gauntlet to its would-be rulers. Tommen, Cersei, Jon, and even Daenerys are put through their paces as rulers in the fourth episode of Season 5. Once again, the show is reminding us, “ruling is hard.” Meereen and King’s Landing are both in turmoil as two armed militant factions promise to cause serious trouble. We also meet the Sand Snakes who are on the verge…

Read More
501_Great_Sept_Seven_statues

By the Old Gods and the New

In Game of Thrones, people often swear by the “old gods and the new.” So far at least, the southern worshipers of the new gods (that is, the Faith of the Seven) seem to be relatively tolerant of the old gods in the North. (The southerners simply sneer at the primitive beliefs of the northerners; they don’t try to kill the northerners for them.)  There are interfaith marriages (Ned and Catelyn). And, in the books, Sam even converted from his…

Read More
qyburn-frankenmonster

New Identities: “The High Sparrow” (Recap: Episode 3, Season 5)

“The High Sparrow” (Episode 3, Season 5) is all about shifting identities. Many of the characters take on new roles and shed old ones. Transformation is key in this episode. Arya continues her stay with the faceless men of Braavos. Margaery becomes a Baratheon (again) when she marries Tommen. Tommen becomes a married man. Cersei is no longer queen. Sansa agrees to marry again. Winterfell not only has a new lord in residence but its facelift is underway. Jon makes…

Read More
arya-house-of-black-and-white

Episode 2: Recap, the House of Black and White

Episode 2 of Season 5 sets up many future plots, but no one storyline dominates it. Cersei is assuming her role as “king.” Myrcella Baratheon may be in danger from Prince Oberyn’s vengeful family. Arya arrives at the House of White and Black in Braavos. Like this season’s first episode, this episode focuses on the difficulties in ruling and the problems in administering justice. While Stannis administers justice too harshly, Daenerys doesn’t have a full command of it yet. It is…

Read More
cersei-kisses-tywin

The Wars to Come: A Fairy Tale Drawn Darkly (Recap E1, S5)

Showing us a fairy tale drawn darkly — Cersei’s flashback to her childhood encounter with a witch in a dark wood — is a fitting way to begin season five. Nothing is going well for the nobility, except for Littlefinger who is the least noble of them. As the season begins, the queen mourns for her father, whom her brother slayed. Meanwhile her brother — Casterly Rock’s heir — questions whether a father-killer is even still legally a lord. The mother of dragons still…

Read More

Just Today: New The Winds of Winter Chapter

An hour ago, George RR Martin released a new The Winds of Winter chapter on his website. It is from Alayne’s point of view. Here is the link. Enjoy! P.S. Please avoid TV spoilers if you leave comments, or preface them with “spoiler” and a paragraph return or two, so the spoiler doesn’t show up in the sidebar feed on our home page.    

Read More

Richard III’s Burial (Round Up)

The lines to pay last respects to Richard III’s body circle the block, standing in line up to four hours. By early Monday morning, nearly 3000 people had seen his body. After all, you don’t get to see a king’s body lie in state every day. The internment starts tomorrow at 10:30 AM UK time. Apparently, you can watch it on BBC Channel 4; this may be tricky from overseas. There is an official site for the burial here and the…

Read More

Q&A at Oxford Union: Sex, Piracy, Eunuchs, and When the Books Will Run Out

Oxford University’s debating society, the Oxford Union, asked Kit Harrington, John Bradley, and HBO showrunners Dan Weiss and David Benioff everything we want to know: how they feel about sex and piracy, when the show will run out of book runway, and why John Bradley wants to play a eunuch. How important is sex in the way they tell the story? The showrunners noted that when they pitched the show to HBO they included A Song of Ice and Fire‘s steamy scenes…

Read More

Richard III Funeral Procession Begins Today: Live Now (Live Updates)

The beginning of Richard III’s funeral procession starts today — an event that signifies the final chapter of a 500 year long story. His cortege is conveying his remains to Leicester Cathedral where they will be on display, effectively “lie in state” for the next four days. Richard’s burial is next Thursday. In keeping with medieval tradition, the funeral procession is weaving through multiple stops. In fact, if you are reading this right now (at 12:10 PM EST) you might be able…

Read More

Season 5 & The Sand Snakes Video

~~~Very Mild TV Spoilers~~~ This season we are going to meet the Sand Snakes — Oberyn Martell’s bastard daughters who are looking to avenge their father’s gruesome death. In the novels, Oberyn has eight daughters, all with the last name “Sand,” since that is the name for natural born children in sunny Dorne. The daughters who are shown in the second video below are as follows: Obara — the eldest who is the daughter of an Oldtowne whore. Nymeria —…

Read More