Game of Thrones [2]

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Post by halfwise on Tue Apr 30, 2019 12:36 pm

Wow, Petty-level crabbit rant!  Excellent job, Forest! Nod

I was bothered by some of these, but you caught it all.  What bothered me:

• Dothraki used as throw-away shock troops.  GRRM wouldn't have done this because he based the Dothraki in part on the Mongols, and their strategy was to let the foot troops tie each other down, then the cavalry comes charging around the end and rolls up the enemy from the side and back after they are already engaged.  Frontal charge into darkness?  Naw.
• I don't get how Arya made it through the white walker phalanx either
• I don't see why Melisandre had to die.  She didn't seem tired of life, you'd think she'd want to hang around and celebrate.

So as Forest pointed out, these were all built around visuals and heart-string pulling.  It was a cool visual to watch the Dothraki arakh-fires wink out one by one.  But it was piss-poor strategy.  It was a good image to watch Melisandre walk off and die, but it would have been better if she had made it clear that life had become a burden and she was just doggedly hanging on until her task was done.  And Arya as a well-trained young woman is cooler and more interesting than Arya as super hero.  Now we've got no reason to worry about her any more.  Plus Stark dead punching through rock like a horror film, etc. etc.  All for instant impact, not for sense.

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Post by halfwise on Tue Apr 30, 2019 2:28 pm

Read in a comments section:


Arya to Gendry, "Stick me with the pointy end."
Gendry to Arya, "I think Bran is watching"

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Post by Lancebloke on Tue Apr 30, 2019 3:05 pm

I do agree with some of these, but not all.

Forest Shepherd wrote:It's easier to count the things that did make sense! But here's some of the stuff that didn't.

Why did Melisandre ride in from the direction of the wights? Why not from the south? What was she doing up there?

Possibly because that is where the people she knew would recognise her rather than get stuck at the back with random soldiers not letting her through? Also, because she wanted to be seen by the army... I think the whole setting swords aflame was just a bit of giving hope rather than effective battle tactics.

Forest Shepherd wrote: Why was Ghost with the Dothraki? And not somewhere more important, like with Bran?

I think show! Ghost has been written off by the crew... I think this was more some fan service. They would have been better killing the poor thing off a few seasons back.

Forest Shepherd wrote: Why did the Dothraki horsemen charge into the darkness to die? What was the plan there? Was there a plan? It was an absolutely terrible plan, if so, and a really shitty way for the writers and Danaerys to treat her loyal followers. The Dothraki have been central to her character arc since season 1, and they're thrown away in a moment for empty spectacle. It reminds me a great deal of that idiotic part during the Battle of the Bastards when the Vale cavalry ride in and save the day... after almost all of Jon's troops are dead. Sansa knew that they were coming, and told Jon nothing about it: making her largely to blame for the thousands of avoidably-dead. Imagine if Jon had known. They could have delayed the battle a few hours, and then entered into it with much better odds.

The Vale bit is a separate question and I think that is all about lack of trust, which is still there.

As for the Dothraki, I can only think for visual effect because it did look both spectacular and then super ominous. I agree that if they were thinking about this tactically then this wasn't a good plan. Having said that, a full on, frontal assault seems to be the Dothraki way of doing things.

Forest Shepherd wrote: Speaking of which, where were the heavy cavalry of the Vale that figured so prominently in season 6?

I can only assume this was a tactical decision as they didn't have enough troops to protect the right flank. It was never explained but you would rather have soldiers in heavy armour there than Dothraki who are all about fighting on horses.

Forest Shepherd wrote: Why weren't the trebuchets and catapults used for more than a single volley? Why were they out in front of the infantry instead of behind them, or off to the sides at the rear? Putting them in front meant that they would be overtaken first. This makes sense how??

I think they should have been used as artillery for a long while before any Dothraki charge took place. I get why they stopped... they didn't want to kill their own people and by the time they realised what had happened to the Dothraki they were swimming in undead.

Forest Shepherd wrote: Why were the troops positioned in the open with the trench behind them? What did this accomplish? Why didn't they fight behind these trenches around choke-points: thereby limiting the number of wights that they had to fight at a time?


I think the plan was to have staged retreats if they needed to. Being stuck behind trenches would never have allowed them to do anything other than defend so if an opportunity arose they wouldn't be able to take advantage of it. Probably reasonable tactics against a normal enemy.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why weren't Drogon and Rhaegal used more effectively? They don't even enter the fight until after all the Dothraki are dead and the armies have come together. And then they rather quickly bugger off to go chase the Night King around.


The plan was not to use them at all. They knew they were outnumbered and they needed to draw the Night King in to the Godswood and then send the dragons in to fry him. Dany gave up on that when her Dothraki got slaughtered and so the plan fell apart. With that, it was then a problem with the storm and the arrival of the Night King that made them less effective.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why were the trenches lit with the Unsullied between the flames and the undead? This cut off their retreat, why would they do that? Like the Dothraki, the whole point of the Unsullied seems to have been to sacrifice them.


You saw Greyworm have a hard choice with puling the bridge. He made the decision to use them to cover the retreat and then to cover while they lit the trench. To me, this was justified as the army of the dead were just swarming at the point and they needed all the time they could get.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why did Melisandre have a fairly easy time of it lighting thousands of steel blades, but seemed to struggle greatly to light oil-soaked wood?


I think this was because she had to count the Night King's magic of the storm the second time around. Same reason the arrows just went out.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why did the wights that threw themselves onto the fire trench not burst into flame? Every other time that we've seen wights expose to fire, they go up as though they are soaked in gasoline. Remember the Umber or Karstark boy or whoever in the first episode this season? He lit right up, as well as all those severed limbs around him. But now, when convenient to the drama of the moment, wights have a stifling effect on burning trenches.

The first couple did, then the weight of volume put out the flames. There looked to have been about 15-20 on there before others started crossing over.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why did that blizzard have to come in and make the rest of the episode a murky mess? I was rather enjoying being able to see what was going on.

The blizzard has always followed the Night King. It followed at Hardhome and when they went north to capture the wight. I imagine the murkiness was an aesthetic choice... it was murky and had to tell what was going on for them too.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why did the wights suddenly go all World War Z when they never have before? Rolling across fields like a wave of zombies, ignoring all the complications that tend to happen when you start piling people on top of each other and telling them to run forward.

They did that at Hardhome and when they surrounded the strike team after capturing the wight….

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why didn't Jon and Rhaegal light the trenches when it was time instead of taking a breather out on the wall around the Godswood?

That was Dany's job. She was waiting for the signal from Davos and Jon didn't know she was lost in the blizzard. He then went after the Night King.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why did we get the kitchen scene from Jurassic Park for Arya? One moment she's killing a dozen of the dead with her special spear, and the next she's hiding in fear from a handful of them? It was a jarring and obvious change of pace to go from a battle scene to a horror film cliché.

She had lost her weapon and had just had her head smashed against a wall. I am pretty sure she would have lost a fight with just the blade, even if it was to the next wave of wights that the original lot alerted.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why do the doors in Winterfell break right off their hinges when a small girl and a mostly-rotted-away wight run into them?

No idea.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why didn't more main characters die? We saw them surrounded by wights repeatedly and battling desperately for their lives, but only Theon and Jorah snuffed it. Last episode it felt as though we we're about to lose half of them, and it was rather effective. Remember that nice bit around the fireplace last episode? It was a poignant, bittersweet scene, and felt very much like a goodbye. None of those characters died. Nice plot armour.

I can only assume they are needed later. My only issue was that the episode relied on plot armour rather than actual reasons for them to survive. They had main characters literally fighting on their own when every other non-major character had died. So:

1 - The wights are known to be destroyed when the walker generals are killed. Maybe have the major characters with Valayrian steel swords take a couple of them out and give a bit of respite.
2 - Have 30 or 40 non-major characters still alive!!

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why were the ancient bones down in the crypts able to punch through their stone coffins? Were the coffins made of very thin pumice?

I don't know... old crypts, dodgy coffin materials?

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why is the Night King immune to dragon-fire, but explodes into snow after being stabbed once by Valyrian steel, a specific alloy that is said to have been forged in dragon fire? Seems pretty dumb.

I think the point of Bran's plan comes in to focus here. He knows the Night King was created by dragonglass being pushed in to a person near a Weir Wood... some kind of being made with magic. The Valyrian steel knife was stabbed in to the same spot in his chest and also in the godswood… magic unmade. A bit like the Ring of Power. Bran didn't know if dragon fire would work but he had set Arya up as his main plan.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why didn't everyone die once the second round of wights were raised by the NK? We saw them all surrounded in the courtyard, and some minutes passed between the raising and the NK's demise.

Previously mentioned plot armour.

Forest Shepherd wrote:How does Jon survive when he was surrounded by the hundred-odd wights, right after he tried to kill the NK?

… plot armour….

Forest Shepherd wrote:How did Danaerys survive? The camera cut away from her being jumped by three wights, while Jorah is busy with a couple others.

I think that was bad editing actually!

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why did Danaerys and Drogon sit there while the wights climbed up onto them? Nice move there Drogon, wait to say something until you're half-covered in them.

Dany looked in shock/despair at that point. Was too late by the time Drogon noticed that Dany wasn't aware of the situation when she was supposed to be in control.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why were the White Walkers not used during the battle? Why did the Night King need to personally kill Bran? If all he wanted to do was to kill the Three-Eyed Raven, then he could certainly have let his zombie-army done it for him without risking his life.

A lot of people were expecting some kind of twist related to Bran and the NK, but there was absolutely nothing.

Agree and have covered how I think they should have been used earlier.

With the Night King, this is my other main issue. We need to know why he does what he does. If it is personal, which it seemed to be as he showed a bit of emotion here, then why? If it is not personal, then don't add personal elements like emotion and needing to be the one to strike the final blow.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why was the broken wooden shaft of Theon's spear able to pierce through a steel breastplate, Theon's torso, and out through a steel back-plate? Armour, funnily enough, has this strange quality to it where it keeps sharp objects from cutting and piercing your body. But lo and behold, shattered wooden sticks can go through that stuff in Game of Thrones-land like it's so much wet toilet paper.

That was the dragon glass end that pierced him and was shoved by a super magic character so...

Forest Shepherd wrote:How, the fuck, does Arya get inside that circle of wights and White Walkers without being noticed by any of them? White Walkers aren't chumps, I mean except for the one that Sam fought, most of them aren't chumps. But she's able to just teleport on through and one-two the NK to death. With how insufferable that character has become over the last several seasons, and what a shitty job the writers have done of making her story mean anything, I found this greatly unsatisfying, as well as just generally ludicrous. She has super-powers I guess. She's basically the Flash.

No, that is what she has trained to become literally since season one. I think she was actually the right person to get the final blow.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Why does Melisandre die at the end? She's very old, sure, but the idea is supposed to be that she has completed her centuries long mission to prepare the way for Azor Ahai or whatever. But what did she actually do? Light the Dothraki's swords so that we could tell when they died in the dark, and light the trench? She gave Arya a vague pep-talk and a hard stare. Is that it? Who is Azor Ahai? Did they come back? Is it Arya?? Do the writers even care? Probably not.

Azor Ahai? No idea. I am not sure if they will talk about the prophecy in the next episode or not.

Melisandre I think was just doing what she had always done, prepare things for the living to defeat the dead. I think she was used as a tool to move people in to places for the final battle but didn't really see that as things unfolded. If she hadn't have been there, I wonder how many of the later events would never have taken place and the dead would have just rolled through the North.

Forest Shepherd wrote:I've heard that both Ghost and a number of Danaerys' troops are shown in the next episode preview. Where the heck were they hiding during the fight? We saw every single person die except for a handful of survivors down in the crypts, Bran and Arya, and the plot-armoured characters inside Winterfell. There were no troops left alive that we saw, so what the heck?

Ghost... no idea.

Other troops.. there were definitely a couple of Unsullied left. As for the rest, I am sure that some could have fallen back to unknown rooms in the keep and defended there. Sure there were a few, like Sam, who were in the piles of dead but not dead. We only saw a few small areas so this one is probably easy to explain.

Forest Shepherd wrote:Anyway, that's all I've got for now, except to say that, nitpicking aside, the episode disappointed. The defenders were made out to look really dumb, the main characters had plot armour, and Arya killing the Night King was the most cliché anime thing the shown has done to date, including that time Arya was stabbed in the stomach (multiple times? I've forgotten), flipped into a dirty canal, and then ran through a city until fighting and defeating her pursuer. Just like that nonsense, this episode did not work for me on a plot or story level. The only things that worked for me were the visuals, some of the acting, the special effects work, and the music.

I think any ending to this series arc of the dead vs living would have been seen a cliché/tropey for a given population. Jon kills him, hero cliché. Jon falls and someone else kills him, unknown saviour cliché. Anything else, random hero cliché.

I thought the episode overall was tense and atmospheric as well as often visually spectacular. The writing could definitely have been better but I would say it was a good episode of which some problems/seeming problems could be addressed in the last 3.

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Post by Forest Shepherd on Tue Apr 30, 2019 3:35 pm

Several of these explanations I can accept on a head-canon level of justification.

This was the first time that we saw the dead doing that wave-of-dead thing. They didn't do that at Hardhome or north of the wall last season. If you've seen World War Z, it was straight out of that movie.

On a rewatch you'll see that Theon is stabbed by the broken wooden shaft. Razz

"With the Night King, this is my other main issue. We need to know why he does what he does. If it is personal, which it seemed to be as he showed a bit of emotion here, then why? If it is not personal, then don't add personal elements like emotion and needing to be the one to strike the final blow."

Yes! There is no twist, or reveal, or explanation. The NK simply wants to kill Bran personally for some reason, and Bran just sits there and lets it happen. Nothing cool or surprising or interesting happened with that.


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Post by Lancebloke on Tue Apr 30, 2019 4:19 pm

I will have to rewatch that bit then! Very Happy

On the World War Z thing, we saw them literally lemmings drop off a cliff when they couldn't get through the gate and then swarm when they had sufficient numbers.

They also started to do that on the frozen lake but they only had a small band of people to target then so not really comparable.

There is an arguement that the NK made them do that simply because he could and his only really goal at that point was to get to Bran. If he lost 10,000 wights he could raise the other 2,000 they just killed, rinse and repeat.

Also... the Dothraki bit did look amazing!
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Post by Mrs Figg on Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:41 pm

wow that's almost a grass length level 4 rant  Razz well done you.

the nit-pickery runs strong in this one Nod

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Post by halfwise on Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:52 pm

Razz

If there's anything I got from this, it's the new concept "plot armor". Love it.

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Post by Lancebloke on Tue Apr 30, 2019 8:30 pm

Plot armour is prevalent in most hero movies. It is the thing that GoT has done really well to avoid before now... the whole 'anyone can die at any time' thing. And normally they have people survive for a good reason not just because they are due in the next episode.

I think we could have really done with much more in that front... maybe with someone like Pod, Brienne, Tormund or Sam dying really early on and, as I said before, making sure that people dont survive against odds that you cant believe (rather than unbelievable odds!).
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Post by halfwise on Tue Apr 30, 2019 9:31 pm

I think most of us used plot armor to get through childhood.

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Post by Forest Shepherd on Thu May 02, 2019 8:55 am

The trouble is that you're always a minor character in someone else's story as well, and minor characters don't get plot armour!

Game of Thrones stopped letting main characters die when they should some time ago. It's only gotten more and more striking. Arya survived terrible stomach wounds, Jaime charged a live dragon and lived, Sandor Clegane was abandoned and left for dead by Arya, Bran and Meera somehow made it south of the wall after the 3ER croaked it and Hodor held things, nearly everyone survived the trip north of the wall last season, and Jon is basically unkillable: even when he actually dies it's only for a little while.

And now, of course, we get many instances of this in a single episode. It's predictable stakes-raising, is all it is. The show-runners increase the danger as an easy way to keep the audience's attention, but don't allow their imperiled main characters to die. Naturally, this leads to the realization by the audience that their favourite characters cannot die. The illusion, that the story deals in real consequences, is dispelled.

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Post by halfwise on Thu May 02, 2019 12:07 pm

Yep, and those that DID die had meaningful deaths. Real people die choking on Captain Crunch or something. From here on out it's all fantasy plot. That's why they can wrap it up so quickly: no pesky reality to get in there and muck up the smooth flow of the story.

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Post by Lancebloke on Thu May 02, 2019 2:53 pm

I think only season 7 was lacking in notable deaths of 'good' characters. Would have to check that but all the seasons before had plenty of them go.
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Post by halfwise on Thu May 02, 2019 11:47 pm

Photos released from episode 4. There be potential spoilers.

https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/photos-got-season-8-episode-212721799.html

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Post by Lancebloke on Fri May 03, 2019 7:21 am

I will have to take a look at them next week then!!!
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Post by halfwise on Mon May 06, 2019 4:15 am

Figgs: You were right, I was wrong. I bow to your superior acumen.

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Post by Forest Shepherd on Mon May 06, 2019 6:16 am

A lot of hasty nonsense in that episode, but at least the show is ending soon.

Half of the Dothraki, Unsullied, and Northerners survived last episode. That is, such, bullshit. We saw a handful of Dothraki return from their suicide-charge, maybe only just one or two. And towards the end of the night, there was almost noone left inside the castle walls. Where the fuck were thousands of soldiers hiding?

Those "scorpions"... Their accuracy and range are just incredible: pretty hard to accept that sort of thing.

Exploding in one side and out the other of a ship at a range of... a mile? Nailing a dragon several hundred feet up and much further away? Bullshit. No one ever thought to make one of these things for ship-to-ship combat before? And then the writers want me to think that Danaerys will be able to use her remaining dragon to attack King's Landing? The minute that Drogon gets within a mile of that place he'll be pin-cushioned.

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Post by halfwise on Mon May 06, 2019 11:40 am

I was thinking he'd have to hide in a cloud, drop in from above and take them out from the rear.

The ships are on an ocean, no place to hide. It beggars imagination a dragon could get so close without noticing them. Should have shot the dragon while coming in for attack - that would have made sense at least.

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Post by Norc on Mon May 06, 2019 2:34 pm

haven't seen the latest episode yet, so i won't read through yet, but i saw this video and if you guys were annoyed with the dothraki suicide squad, then watch this because omg why could we not get a bit more of a glimpse into the planning of the battle and maybe see some power dynamics between dany and jon, and idk know who to blame for the idiotic choices. or! if they did everything right and still be fucked that would also be a cool storytelling que. i mean the dothraki attack i understand from a storytelling point of view, to tell us how fucked everyone is and to really take away all hope BUT it is really stupid, and belittles the dtrhaki who are based on monoglians KNOWN for their great skill and skillfull and smart battle moves.

also the opportunity to really explore the character and sansa, tyrion etc. in the planning of the defence was kinda lost.  i really wanted to see that. all we got was sad drinking and fanficcy reunions and meetings between other less important characters. also the episode really didn't bring out anything new to the overall story, other than the knight king being defeated... other than i am curious as to how many soldiers they have left now.... 
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Post by Norc on Mon May 06, 2019 3:02 pm

Mrs Figg wrote:well that was ok, lot better than last week, and boy there was some fan service going on.  "the things we do for lurve" awkward! silent  it seemed to be about all the remaining couples, questions and relationships which fans need to tie up. Arya and Gendry, and Dany finding out about Jon being the main ones. There were two seconds of Ghost but at least we know where he is. The Brienne thing was nice, and Davos meeting the little girl with the scar was quite touching. I liked the boys booze-up as well, that was cute. Its the calm before the storm.
yes, so cute i agree. I liked it but WHY?! it doesn't add aything to character development, so much potential to look into ... power play (that sounds sexual, but you get what i mean) between Dany and Jon, even Sansa could be a smart at suggesting strategies, like she has kinda done before, also all this rage about tyrion being so clever we need him for later, can we seeeeeee some of it??????!?!!! also maybe a bit more insight for us viewers into the actual battle plans so we know when they fuck up and who to blame!

edit: and about battle planning, even more cattyness between Sansa and Dany yes .. i feel like Sansa is the only one here who is level headed and sees who dany truly is, a (power psycho bitch).
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Post by halfwise on Mon May 06, 2019 3:10 pm

Good tactical analysis but I don't understand why they all leave their ass-side unprotected.  If I was leading the army of the dead I'd lead a contingent round the back and waltz right in.

I like the idea of the outer line to slow the passage enough that the Dothraki could do the Mongol style flank attacks to wipe them out wave after wave.

Hiya Norc! Wave

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Post by Norc on Mon May 06, 2019 3:15 pm

Forest Shepherd wrote:
I used to like Arya. But then the actress got all cocky,
This is the single stupidest argument i have ever read/heard about why someone stopped liking a written fictional character....  i mean.. really? why include this!? I mean HELLO?! anyone home, this has nothing i mean nothing to do with the show. pjust because she isn't 12 anymore and have become A FUCKING 20 YEAR OLD WOMAN WITH HER OWN LIFE AND OPINIONS (and maybe you your dick don't like that) you have decided the character she plays in a tv-series is not very likeable anymore. i mean come on. Be a bit more intelligent about this. I'm offended i have to even acknowlede such stupidity and bad arguments...


also this is so rude..
I mean, apart from satisfying her lusty ways with Mr. 10 Body & 5 Face.

edit: also i see people pointing out the characters actual age, yes do the math! she's not 12 and the character has developmet into an assassin, you are not meant to necessarily like assassins..
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Post by Norc on Mon May 06, 2019 3:26 pm

Lancebloke wrote:
Spoiler:
They didnt mention who gave her the knife that she ended it all with.
Spoiler:
bran did, first episode.
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Post by Norc on Mon May 06, 2019 3:35 pm

halfwise wrote:Good tactical analysis but I don't understand why they all leave their ass-side unprotected.  If I was leading the army of the dead I'd lead a contingent round the back and waltz right in.

I like the idea of the outer line to slow the passage enough that the Dothraki could do the Mongol style flank attacks to wipe them out wave after wave.

Hiya Norc! Wave

hi! Wave yeah, they could sneak in through the back, but it means more walking around and idk.. when you have the numbers why bother. but hten they would've been truly fucked, and made for a much more tense episode! i mean. surrounded by the undead?! yikes!
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Post by Mrs Figg on Mon May 06, 2019 3:59 pm

halfwise wrote:Figgs: You were right, I was wrong.  I bow to your superior acumen.

I resume you are talking about a certain two people in a love triangle ? Wink

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Post by Mrs Figg on Mon May 06, 2019 4:04 pm

Well that episode was very poignant and sad. Sad   I cried at the beginning, I cried in the middle and I cried at the end. Sad No
Spoiler:
Ghost broke my heart  Crying or Very sad

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