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- 08/03/17--07:58: _'Game of Thrones' s...
- 08/03/17--08:17: _'Game of Thrones' a...
- 08/03/17--11:48: _A 'Real Housewives'...
- 08/03/17--12:57: _The best feature on...
- 08/04/17--06:24: _An unaired 'Game of...
- 08/04/17--09:05: _19 of the craziest ...
- 08/04/17--10:15: _REVIEW: Kylie Jenne...
- 08/04/17--12:44: _Two stars on the TV...
- 08/04/17--14:13: _11 movie and TV sho...
- 08/04/17--14:45: _Halle Berry explain...
- 08/04/17--16:38: _20 most popular TV ...
- 08/06/17--13:04: _These are the 10 be...
- 08/06/17--19:03: _Here's the preview ...
- 08/06/17--19:10: _'Game of Thrones' j...
- 08/06/17--19:34: _Why you probably sh...
- 08/06/17--20:10: _2 ‘Game of Thrones’...
- 08/06/17--20:26: _2 'Game of Thrones'...
- 08/06/17--20:34: _9 details you might...
- 08/07/17--05:14: _5 most talked-about...
- 08/07/17--07:46: _John Oliver says th...
- "Real Housewives of New York City" star LuAnn D'agostino released a statement on Twitter confirming she has filed for divorce from Tom D'agostino, her husband of just seven months.
- "It's with great sadness that Tom & I agreed to divorce," she said. "We care for each other very much, hope you respect our privacy during this sad time!"
- Their relationship has been a dramatic storyline on the Bravo reality show and the subject of recent reports that their marriage was on the rocks.
- 08/03/17--12:57: The best feature on Netflix you’re probably not using
- Netflix has a feature which allows you to download TV shows and movies onto your mobile devices.
- It's easy to use and handy if you're going on a trip and don't want to pay for an in-flight movie.
- We've outlined the best practices and tips for using the feature.
- HBO was recently hacked in a cyber-security attack.
- Several episodes of TV shows were reportedly stolen.
- Now a full episode of "Game of Thrones" appears to have been leaked on Friday.
- The episode, "Spoils of War," is scheduled to premiere on Sunday.
- According to HBO, the episode leak wasn't related to the earlier hack, but came from Star India (an international distributor).
- 08/04/17--09:05: 19 of the craziest moments from 'The Bachelor'
- "Riverdale" actors Lili Reinhart and Cole Sprouse play TV couple Betty and Jughead.
- Since March, fans have been speculating that the actors are dating.
- Finally, Reinhart confirmed it in an Instagram post on Friday.
- Halle Berry is not pregnant.
- People thought she was, because of a red carpet pose she made two months ago.
- She explained that she was just transitioning between poses; she wasn't indicating she's pregnant.
- Berry also had a burger for lunch that day.
- 08/04/17--16:38: 20 most popular TV shows of 2017 so far
- 08/06/17--13:04: These are the 10 best shows on TV, according to critics
- 08/06/17--19:03: Here's the preview for the next episode of 'Game of Thrones'
- HBO has released the preview for "Game of Thrones" season seven, episode five.
- We'll get to see the conclusion and aftermath of Dany's heated revenge on the Lannister army. It looks like she may be going a little power hungry.
- Jon Snow will get to meet Drogon up close and personal.
- It sounds like Jon will also reunite with his brother Bran.
- The next episode of "Game of Thrones" will air August 13 at 9 p.m. Watch the trailer below.
- 08/06/17--20:10: 2 ‘Game of Thrones’ characters just had an epic first fight scene
- 08/07/17--05:14: 5 most talked-about moments from this week's 'Game of Thrones'
Celebrity often outweighs talent when it comes to landing roles in Hollywood, and the recent audition experience of "Game of Thrones" star Sophie Turner is another example — according to her.
Turner, who plays Sansa Stark on the hit HBO show, told Porter magazine that she won a role over a "far better" actress for a project because she has a "big social-media following."
"A lot of what I have achieved is about timing and luck, but it is also, and I hate to say it, about a big social-media following," Turner told the print-only magazine.
"I auditioned for a project and it was between me and another girl who is a far better actress than I am, far better, but I had the followers, so I got the job," she said. "It's not right, but it is part of the movie industry now."
Though Turner didn't name the project in question, she is slated to appear in four films over the next two years. These upcoming projects include "Berlin, I Love You,""Hunstville,""Time Freak," and a reprisal of her role as Jean Grey in "X-Men: Dark Phoenix."
We must note, however, that while Turner is speaking to a truth in Hollywood, she's also being modest. She has given a spectacular performance as Sansa Stark in "Game of Thrones," especially in the later seasons.
Warning: If you're not caught up on "Game of Thrones," there are spoilers for the show ahead.
Iwan Rheon played one of the meanest villains on HBO's "Game of Thrones." He tortured and dismembered Theon Greyjoy, abused his wife Sansa, and fed his stepmother and newborn brother to a pack of dogs. So it was fitting his send-off was equally as vicious. Sansa left him to be eaten by his hungry pet canines in a cold, dark cell on season six.
The scene is pretty gruesome as the dogs start to tear at his flesh. But Rheon, of course, was never in any actual harm while filming. During an appearance on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" Wednesday, Rheon described how the memorable scene came to pass.
"It was the last scene I did, so I did suspect they'd actually let it happen for real," said Rheon of the dogs tearing away at him. "Realistically, I wasn't anywhere near any dogs."
Rheon did see a few dogs on set that they've used before. But when he tried to be friendly with them, he was strongly advised against having direct interaction with them.
Hew said, "They were like, 'Don't look the dog in the eye!'"
"They're not like pets. They're kind of guard dogs. They're trained to be vicious, really, and they only listen to their owner. So if you have eye contact with them, they take that as a direct threat. So I wasn't allowed to be anywhere near these dogs."
Rheon noted that the finished scene that aired was all CGI. There may have been one shot where there's an actual dog behind him in a cage.
Kimmel thought it may just be easier to film with dogs "who are trained not to kill the actors."
"It's so 'Game of Thrones' isn't it not to do that?" joked Rheon.
You can tune in to see who will get killed off "Game of Thrones" next when it airs on HBO Sunday night.
Watch Rheon on "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" below:
The INSIDER Summary:
"The Real Housewives of New York City" star LuAnn D'agostino is divorcing from her husband of seven months, Tom D'agostino.
The Bravo reality star announced the split on Twitter.
It's with great sadness that Tom & I agreed to divorce. We care for each other very much, hope you respect our privacy during this sad time!— Luann D'Agostino (@CountessLuann) August 3, 2017
The announcement arrives just weeks after a report from Page Six that there was trouble in the marriage and that she slapped her new husband at an upscale NYC restaurant.
She partially confirmed the report, clarifying that it was more of a "tap" than a "slap" on Bravo's "Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen." She also said their tumultuous marriage was a result of their "very passionate love affair."
Their relationship has been a running storyline on the reality show. Many of her cast mates had reported to LuAnn that Tom was cheating on her with various people. She married him anyway in January.
The INSIDER Summary:
I recently flew cross-country from New York City to Los Angeles, California. Since I don't sleep too well on planes, I figured it would be the perfect time to catch up on some movies and television I haven't had the time to watch.
I was flying Virgin America. And while the airline offers a selection of shows and newer movies, I wasn't as enthused by the $5-to-$8 price per film. If I'm going to pay to watch a premium movie, then I want to see it in good quality on a larger screen.
If you're not into spending some cold hard cash on an in-flight movie and you happen to have Netflix, there's a simple alternative you can and should be doing to bring some movies and TV shows with you on the go for free.
Ahead of my over five hour flight, I used Netflix's download feature to put several movies and TV shows onto my phone. The streaming site added the feature at the end of 2016. I had tried it out a few times before on the NYC Subway and NJ Transit to plow through new seasons of "Orange Is the New Black" and "House of Cards." (I'm a serial binger.)
Though I was watching on a small iPhone 6 screen, I didn't have to worry about interruptions from the pilot cutting off dialogue or missing some of the movie if I dozed off. I could pause, rewind, and restart as much as my heart desired. There was also the satisfaction of not having to pay extra for some quality in-flight entertainment.
If you're not using Netflix's download feature, then you're not getting the most out of your streaming subscription. If you haven't heard of the feature or aren't familiar with it, here's a quick rundown on how to use the feature and what you're able to download.
How to download shows and movies from Netflix onto your device
If you have never downloaded something from Netflix to watch offline before, don't worry. It's easy! When you log into the Netflix app from your mobile device, tap the menu icon in the upper left hand corner.
You'll then see a drop-down menu. In it, you should see sections labeled "My Downloads" and "Available for Download." My Downloads is the folder that will hold all of your offline TV shows and movies. Presuming you haven't downloaded anything yet, you're going to want to head to "Available for Download."
Netflix doesn't make all of its content available for download. So you don't have to play the guessing game, the app makes it easy by putting all of its offline content in one area.
This is what it looks like:
After you see something you like, click on it and you'll be brought to a screen for that individual item. I was excited to see the Oscar-nominated movie "Lion" was available for my flight, since I hadn't been able to catch it before.
You'll have the option to add it to your list, rate it, share it, or download it. That's the one you want to select.
Once it's downloaded, tap on the menu item and, this time, head to "My Downloads."
All of your downloaded items should appear neatly in there. Each item should have the little phone icon next to it, meaning your good to watch on the go. Just tap on the show or movie you want to watch and it should load without using up extra data.
Some things to know before you download
Make sure you're on Wi-Fi
Before you start downloading anything, make sure your device is running on Wi-Fi. If you're downloading a long movie or a season of a TV show, you don't want that eating up your data.
Don't download at the last minute
You don't want to be downloading shows and movies while you're in the airport or on the way to your flight. Again, you want to be connected to Wi-Fi when you're downloading content. You also want to give yourself some time to make sure everything can download onto your phone.
How much you can download will depend on the amount of storage space you have on your device. I was able to comfortably hold two movies and four episodes of a TV series. If you're not sure how much space you have, you can head to "App Settings" from the drop-down menu and it will tell you how much storage space Netflix is taking up and how much you have left.
You're watching content in lower quality
Netflix automatically sets your media to download at a standard video quality rate so items download faster and take up less storage space. But if you've already made peace with the fact you're watching premium content on a small screen, you're probably OK with this.
Personally, I've found the picture and sound quality to be great while traveling. I always watch with the captions on in case I miss anything from the hum of a train or my surroundings. That's not for everyone though.
You can watch in higher quality, but it will cost you more space
If you head back into the app's settings, click on video quality. You can toggle between a standard and high video quality.
The downside is that the higher quality will take up more space on your phone and take a bit longer to download. If you have a lot of space to spare and plan ahead to download content a while before your trip, then you should be OK.
I downloaded two movies in both standard and high quality. It didn't take too much longer to add to my device while connected to Wi-Fi. One of the movies took up slightly more space than the other.
Not everything on Netflix is available to download
This is one of the killers. If you're just scrolling through Netflix and not the "Available for Download" area, it will always tell you if a show or film is available for download. Just look for the little download carrot next to a show.
Most Netflix originals are available for download. Any that aren't available were made with a studio which owns the content. The same goes for why only some content is available for download. Some movie and TV studios have deals with other companies or Netflix states on its site popularity is another factor.
Some content expires after you download it
I've also noticed that certain media has a limit on the time that you can watch the downloaded content. It doesn't seem to be clear which shows have an expiration. Netflix also limits the amount of times you can download some shows and movies onto a device. For instance, after going to download one of the most recent episodes of "Orange is the New Black," I was warned I only have one more time to download it. I think I've downloaded it once before.
I don't think I'm going to need to rewatch "OITNB" on my phone more than once or twice anyway, but it's something to be aware of if you plan to download content and forget to watch right away.
If you don't mind those things, then you're good to go. I found the download feature a useful and easy way to catch up on some content I wouldn't have otherwise.
The INSIDER Summary:
Early this week, HBO released a statement concerning a recent cyber-security hack indicating that full episodes of "Ballers" and "Room 104" had been stolen. In a new, separate leak, an unaired "Game of Thrones" episode has made its way online through HBO's India distributor, according to HBO.
Tatiana Siegel of The Hollywood Reporter tweeted early Friday morning, saying "sources inside HBO say [the leak was] NOT related to hack."
This Sunday's Game of Thrones ep 4 has hit torrent sites, but sources inside HBO say NOT related to hack. Ep was lost by Indian distributor— Tatiana Siegel (@TatianaSiegel27) August 4, 2017
"This confirms the compromise of episode 4 of Game of Thrones Season 7, earlier this afternoon. We take this breach very seriously and have immediately initiated forensic investigations at our [end] and the technology partner's end to swiftly determine the cause. This is a grave issue and we are taking appropriate legal remedial action."
On Friday morning, a Reddit community called /r/FreeFolk reported that the full fourth episode of "Game of Thrones" season seven, "Spoils of War," was now available to download. "Free Folk" is a subreddit created by "Game of Thrones" fans who knew about leaks and spoilers as a place for discussion of said leaks.
Based on screenshots taken, the episode circulating is HBO's internal version of "Spoils of War."
The "Free Folk" subreddit was also the hub of discussion in 2016 when descriptions of season six episodes were being leaked ahead of the series' air date. The apparent leak of a full season seven episode marks the third time in "Game of Thrones" history that full sections of upcoming seasons have been stolen and placed online.
In 2015, four episodes were leaked ahead of the fifth season premiere. In 2016, as noted earlier, verbal descriptions of upcoming episodes were being shared ahead of their airing, and then a single episode ("The Door") was leaked online one day before its premiere on HBO.
The new 2017 hack, done by an anonymous person using the moniker "Little.Finger66," also included the theft of thousands of internal documents. One document already circulating was an early draft of the outline for episode four, "Spoils of War." Whether or not more content from the seventh season of "Game of Thrones" was stolen remains to be seen.
"Spoils of War" is officially premiering Sunday at 9 p.m. on HBO.
This article has been updated to reflect HBO's comment.
All's fair in love when you're looking for it on reality TV, which means there are always surprises in store.
Fans of "The Bachelor" and "The Bachelorette," know by now that anything can happen when contestants are vying for one person's heart and they're being taped. From broken hearts to surprising secrets, there is always some drama on the ABC reality dating show.
Here's a look back at 19 of the craziest "Bachelor" moments:
Jesse Palmer picks the wrong woman.
The football player messed up during a rose ceremony when he called out the wrong name. He gave a rose to Katie Gehart when he meant to give it to Karen Lindsay. He pulled host Chris Harrison aside to tell him. Gehart was given the option to stay, which she did.
Wes Hayden has a girlfriend.
Hayden went on Jillian Harris' season of "The Bachelorette" with bad intentions, but nothing was quite as surprising as his limo revelation. After making it to the top four and then being rejected, he bragged about having a girlfriend the entire time as the limo was taking him away.
"I'm going down in flames," he said. "The first guy on 'The Bachelorette' to ever make it to the top four with a girlfriend."
Jason Mesnick changes his mind.
Mesnick became the bachelor for its 13th season, having been a runner-up on "The Bachelorette" season four. He picked Melissa Rycroft, but on the "After the Final Rose" special episode, Mesnick revealed that he changed his mind. He broke up with Rycroft on TV and asked runner-up Molly Malaney if she wanted to give him another try. She said yes, and the couple has now been married since 2010.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Warning: Minor spoilers for E!'s "Life of Kylie."
The youngest of the Kardashian crew stars in this spin-off all about her, E! Entertainment's "Life of Kylie." And if you're going to believe Kylie Jenner, that kind of attention isn't in her comfort zone. It also features her best friend Jordyn Woods, her hair stylist and wig magician Tokyo Stylez, and her makeup artist Ariel Tejada.
Why you should care: If you're a Kardashian fan, this is required viewing.
If you're a fan of "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" like me, you'll consume anything they throw our way in terms of spin-offs. But while the 19-year-old reality star, social media vixen, and makeup entrepreneur has grown up with cameras, she has been the most aloof member of the famous reality family on screen.
What's hot: It's great to get an understanding of Kylie that we don't get on "KUWTK" and social media.
It's cool to have a half-hour to get to know her better and to see some of the anxiety she feels around strangers and crowds. It can explain a lot about why she's seldom around on "KUWTK." You also get to meet her closest friends, who many of us have seen in her social media but never really got to meet on the family's reality show.
What's not: Kylie can come off as intentionally sheltered from the real world and shallow.
The first two episodes, which will debut back-to-back, heavily focus on Kylie surprising a teen boy, Albert, by being his date for his prom. Turns out she has some bitter feelings about missing her own prom, since she and her sister, Kendall, were home-schooled. While this is revealing for Kylie, it feels way too promotional. Plus, she spends much of the time at the prom sequestered in a backroom due to her anxiety over crowds. That (and the fact that she brought her whole crew along with her on the date) made the event less special and less sincere.
Plus, it's always troubling for me to see a celebrity who counts her employees as her best friends, because it could mean she's created a bubble of people around her who may not be 100% with her. It really makes Kylie look shallow.
The bottom-line: You must watch.
Kardashian fans should watch, because well, was there any doubt we would? It's fun to learn more about Kylie and understand why she can be absent from "KUWTK" and why she feels like she needs to put out this perfect image of herself out to fans and on social media.
At the same time, her haters will get a lot out of fuel for their dislike from watching too.
"Life of Kylie" premieres Sunday at 9 p.m. on E! Entertainment.
The INSIDER Summary:
Everyone's favorite "Riverdale" couple is officially dating in real life.
In a new Instagram post, actress Lili Reinhart, who plays Betty, shared a birthday message for actor Cole Sprouse, who plays Jughead, thanking him for making her past year memorable.
"To the man who has showed me more beautiful places in this past year than I have ever seen in my whole life," she wrote in the caption. "Happy birthday, Cole. Thank you for all of the adventures and here's to many more."
Betty and Jughead, named Bughead by fan's who "ship" the couple, ended the first season together but unsure what the future was going to hold.
The real-life couple had been reported to be dating for a while now. Since March, fans have been speculating online and analyzing the actor's interactions.
People reported in July that the couple was seen getting close at Comic-Con, but Reinhart's Instagram is the first confirmation that they are indeed dating.
Bughead fans can expect some drama between the two lovebirds when "Riverdale" returns for its second season October 11.
Watch a trailer below:
People get tattoos in honor of family members and hobbies and the same goes for celebrities. But some will get extra ink to commemorate a project they hold near and dear to their hearts.
From "Game of Thrones" actresses to Selena Gomez, some of the stars show off their movie and TV tattoos loud and proud, while others get their reminders in more discreet locations as a personal reminder of a big event in their lives.
Keep reading to see what TV and movie casts got inked together to remember their time together on set.
Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul both got inked in honor of the “Breaking Bad” series’ finale.
Cranston told TheWrap both he and costar Aaron Paul decided to get tattoos on the last day of filming the hit AMC show. Cranston has the show's "Br, Ba" logo etched on the inside of his ring finger on his right hand.
"Someone said, 'Well if you put it there, no one can see it,'" Cranston told E!"I said, 'I can see it.' So every once in a while I catch a glimpse of it, and I see that logo for 'Breaking Bad' and it just makes me smile.'"
Paul, meanwhile, got the phrase "no half measures" tattooed on his bicep. The line is from the season three episode, "Half Measures."
"13 Reasons Why" executive producer Selena Gomez and the show’s cast members got matching semi-colon tattoos.
The singer got matching semicolon tattoos with the show's stars Alisha Boe and Tommy Dorfman, who play Jessica and Ryan, respectively, in April.
The semicolons are a symbol of new beginnings, made popular by suicide prevention organization Project Semicolon.
Lucy Hale and the "Pretty Little Liars" cast will always carry a memory of the show on their index fingers.
The "Pretty Little Liars" women got the first initial of their character's names inked on their index fingers to celebrate the end of the series. Hale, Shay Mitchell, Janel Parrish, Sasha Pieterse, Ashley Benson, and Troian Bellisario got the tattoos at the Shamrock Social Club in West Hollywood, California in October 2016.
"Thank you @shamrocksocialclub for taking care of us,"Hale wrote on Instagram. "We couldn't not get tattoos to commemorate the show! And obviously on our ‘shh’ finger."
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
The INSIDER Summary:
Halle Berry is not pregnant, despite the reports that she is.
The 50-year-old actress has two kids already, and a pose from back in June made people think she was planning to have a third. On the red carpet for the 6th Annual Chrysalis Butterfly Ball in Los Angeles, Berry put her hands on her lower stomach in a spread "V" shape, which is apparently the universal celebrity symbol for "I am going to have a baby."
On Thursday night's episode of Bravo's "Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen," Berry explained exactly what happened.
She said that the photos were taken while she was transitioning between poses and wanted to put her hands on her hips.
Berry also said that she had "a pretty big lunch."
"I had a burger and fries," Berry said. "And I was a little poofed out."
You can watch Berry act out exactly how it went down below:
A war is waging between "Game of Thrones" and "The Walking Dead" for the title of the most popular television show in the world, but which one will come out on top?
To figure out what shows have captured the world's attention, INSIDER worked with Parrot Analytics, which analyzes ratings data (where available), social media chatter, blogging, and illegal pirating, among other factors, to figure out the viewer demand for shows.
With all the different ways we're watching TV nowadays – online, mobile, and streaming, etc. – Parrot provides one of the best ways to compare shows across platforms and measure how popular they really are.
In ranking the popularity of these shows, Parrot assigned them an expressions total that reflects average daily audience demand from all countries from January 1 to July 31, 2017, which is adjusted for each country's population.
Here are the 20 most popular TV shows in the world for 2017 so far, according to Parrot Analytics:
20. "The Grand Tour" (Amazon)
Average demand expressions: 2.93 million
19. "The 100" (The CW)
Average demand expressions: 3.04 million
18. "Lucifer" (FOX)
Average demand expressions: 3.11 million
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
The Television Critics Association announced its winners of the 33rd Annual TCA Awards on Saturday in Los Angeles.
Every year, the group of more than 200 TV critics from TV news outlets, newspapers, and websites honor the shows and stars they feel delivered the highest quality entertainment on the small screen.
This year, FX scored the most wins with three awards, two for "Atlanta" and one for "Fargo." Also this year, actress Carrie Coon became the first person to be honored for roles on two different shows: "Fargo" and HBO's "The Leftovers."
So what other TV series were among the critics' cream of the crop?
Here are the best shows on TV, according to critics (and what they won for):
"The Leftovers" (HBO)
Individual achievement in drama: Carrie Coon (double win with "Fargo")
Individual achievement in drama: Carrie Coon (double win with "The Leftovers")
Individual achievement in comedy: Donald Glover
Outstanding achievement in comedy
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
The INSIDER Summary:
Warning: Spoilers ahead for "Game of Thrones" season seven, episode four, "Spoils of War."
Despite being a record-short time of just 50 minutes, "Spoils of War" might go down in history as one of the greatest episodes of HBO'S "Game of Thrones."
The best hours of "Game of Thrones" follow a certain recipe. There needs to be balance between epic scale and human tragedy. You need a dash of sexual tension (if not outright romance) and a sprinkling of humor. More importantly, the best "Game of Thrones" episodes are the ones where you find yourself rooting for an unexpected character.
And of course, a gigantic dragon breathing fire is never a bad idea.
"Spoils of War" had it all. And even more impressively, HBO managed to pack it into a brief 50 minutes.
The opening centered Jaime as the focal point of the episode
The episode started with Jaime, Bronn, and the Lannister army making the march from Highgarden back to King's Landing with wagons full of gold and food. Bronn noticed something weighing on Jaime's mind — clearly Olenna's final moments where she confessed to killing Joffrey and told Jaime that his twin/lover Cersei would be the end of him has Jaime rattled.
Arya's return to Winterfell was both touching and revelatory
Though "Spoils of War" is packed with tear-jerker and fist-pump-inducing moments, Arya's arrival to Winterfell is peak "I'm about to cry" TV. After years of running and fighting and murdering and getting beaten up and hardening herself to the world, Arya returns home. She sees her sister Sansa and they embrace not once but twice. They admire each other's survival instincts and acknowledge that though their lives have been marred by suffering, their stories aren't yet over.
They have a frustrating conversation with the Three-Eyed Raven aka former-Bran, and Arya gets a second badass weapon gifted to her from a brother — the mysterious Valyrian steel dagger used in Bran's assassination attempt. We later get an incredible scene showing Arya training with Brienne, and besting her every time.
Arya trained extensively with the Faceless Men on seasons five and six, though we mostly saw that work through small montages. Seeing her in prime form, and in an outfit that echoes Ned Stark, is beautifully inspiring. Arya cheekily tells Brienne that "no one" taught her how to fight, which is technically true.
Jon and Daenerys grew closer and the tension is thick
On Dragonstone, Jon and Daenerys work on their possibly alliance with a cozy cave scene (a not-so-subtle nod to Jon's first foray into love with Ygritte in a cave). Davos throws around some great quips and grammar lessons he learned from Stannis and Jon emotionally confronts Theon about his past grievances.
This is when the best part of the episode kicks off and the tension is immediately palpable. Even after Jon tried to talk Daenerys out of using her dragons on King's Landing, we hear that she's left Dragonstone. To where? The scene stops short of having Jon explain, but the immediate cut to Jaime and the Lannister army says it all.
The Lannisters were the most empathetic characters on the episode
The ensuing showdown between Daenerys' Dothraki and Drogon against the Lannister forces is arguably one of the best battle sequences "Game of Thrones" has ever delivered. And that's a very high bar.
The biggest success of the Lannister/Dothraki battle was how much it made you sympathize with the Lannister men. Everyone cheered after the season seven premiere when Arya slaughtered the Frey men. And up until this episode, you might have thought a Lannister massacre would bring about similar feelings of vengeance and righteousness.
But instead, we got looks at the young men in the Lannister army literally shaking as they face the Dothraki. Men were shrieking as they burned alive inside their own armor – men who turned into a pile of ash within seconds.
We watched this battle from the Lannisters' point of view for most of the sequence and it brought the horrors (and spoils) of war to the forefront. This was also great payoff for the Ed Sheeran cameo scene, which served to humanize the young men serving Cersei.
The bleakness was only made worse when we saw Tyrion standing on a nearby cliff, watching as the men sworn to defend his family name were wiped out without a second thought from Daenerys. She also incinerates all the food stores, making us wonder if she's really the best rule for Westeros after all.
The score, directing, and writing were all in harmony this week
We must take a moment here to acknowledge the beautiful work of the score in this episode, crafted by the show's composer, Ramin Djawadi. Jaime's distinct theme song (first introduced on the sixth season) was reused to great effect, as was the Lannister song "Rains of Castamere" and a new Dothraki battle-cry tune.
By the time Jaime was thrown into the water by the newly heroic Bronn, viewers were left speechless.
"Spoils of War" was written by showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, and directed by Matt Shakman. Though the series' progression away from George R.R. Martin's published material often results in mixed-reviews (if not outright anger) from some fans, this episode proved Benioff and Weiss can create magic on screen all on their own.
The surprise factor plays a huge role in the episode's success
In this way, the episode was reminscent of my personal favorite: "Hardhome." The element of surprise cannot be underestimated when it comes to "Game of Thrones." By now we're conditioned to believe the biggest moments of the season will come on episode nine, which means any epic scenes placed in earlier hours of the season will automatically amp up the hype levels.
Just as in "Hardhome," the madness onscreen on "Spoils of War" was a feat of CGI magic, incredible stunt work, fantastic directing, and seamless writing. All done without the support of Martin's book material (that we know of).
Jaime's arc moved forward in a fantastically complex way
Jaime, who has been a rather boring character of late, was the star of this episode. His first sighting of a dragon along with seeing Daenerys Targaryen — the last remaining daughter of the Mad King Aerys, was breathtaking. Jaime has spent his whole life dealing with the fallout of his decision to break his Kingsguard oath and kill Aerys, a difficult choice he made when faced with the prospect of allowing Aerys to burn King's Landing, and everyone in it, to the ground.
Watching Jaime see that Daenerys was just "more of the same" (as Jon put it), was extremely powerful. "Game of Thrones" excels when Martin's characters, who you might have been separately cheering for, come together and force the viewer to realize that picking sides isn't nearly as black and white as you might have thought.
This story is more than just Lannister versus Targaryen, or good versus evil. It's not about dragons, or direwolves, or magical ice zombies. "Game of Thrones" is a story about the cycles of war, vengeance, and justice, and how those larger-than-life purposes affect change at a human level. "Spoils of War" honed in on this theme with the perfect amount of nuance and grandiose production quality often seen in feature films, all with just 50 minutes of screen time.
Warning: Spoilers ahead for "Game of Thrones" season seven, including speculation of future events.
"Spoils of War"— possibly one of the best "Game of Thrones" episodes of all time— ended with a worrying cliffhanger. Jaime Lannister, knocked into the water thanks to a heroic act from Bronn, was sinking to the bottom of a river. His heavy armor and golden hand were weighing him down and Jaime seemed to make no move to free himself from drowning as the screen faded to black.
But there's almost no way Jaime is dead.
"Game of Thrones" showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss know how to surprise viewers with major character deaths, but a major player like Jaime would never die offscreen with such little fanfare. Plus, the general rule for "Game of Thrones" is if there's no body shown, there's no confirmed kill.
Since Bronn was the one who intervened when Jaime was about to get himself roasted alive by Drogon, we can guess that the sellsword will also rescue Jaime from drowning. In the preview for next week's episode, we see Daenerys addressing a group of defeated soldiers. It's possible Jaime will be among them, or maybe he and Bronn will sneak away before Daenerys starts threatening to burn people.
The cliffhanger with Jaime is a parallel to a scene on the fifth season where viewers nearly thought Jaime's little brother Tyrion had drowned.
Tyrion went into the water during a battle with the Stone Men of Valyria, but Jorah Mormont saved him at the last moment. As with Tyrion, this "drowning" moment came at a point in both their storylines where they weren't nearly ready to leave the series.
Jaime's final moments on "Spoils of War" seemed to be an echo back to the conversation he and Bronn had at the start of the episode when Bronn asked Jaime why he didn't seem happy about the victory at Highgarden.
"You've just won the biggest prize in the world, what could you possibly have to be upset about?" Bronn asked.
Then Bronn asked for a castle — the reward promised to him back on the fifth season when Jaime recruited him to come to Dorne. Now after only giving Bronn a big bag of gold, Jaime told him he wouldn't want a big castle like Highgarden anyways.
"The more you own, the more it weighs you down," Jaime said.
"Oh is that why you're so f------ glum, eh?" Bronn replied. "All your new riches weighing you down?"
By the episode's end, Jaime's golden hand and heavy armor is literally weighing him down in the river. That was the likely intention behind the "cliffhanger." You aren't meant to think Jaime is dead or dying, but instead reflect on the ways this episode has changed Jaime's character.
Towards the beginning of "Spoils of War," you could sense Jaime's good heart – whether it was him dwelling on Olenna's warnings about Cersei or him trying to temper Randyll Tarly's apparent penchant for flogging soldiers.
But Daenerys' choice to attack with Drogon cemented Jaime as a firmly anti-Targaryen player in this game. He slayed Daenerys father, the Mad King Aerys, when he believed innocent lives were at risk. Now he has seen that Daenerys (in his mind) is no different, and he will risk everything again to kill the last known heir of Aerys.
Warning: Spoilers ahead for "Game of Thrones" season seven, episode four, "The Spoils of War."
Brienne of Tarth has always been one of the best warriors in "Game of Thrones," but she has some stiff competition from Arya Stark.
During Sunday's episode of the HBO drama, Arya finally returned home to Winterfell.
Fans got to watch Sansa, Bran, and Arya — the surviving Stark siblings — finally reunite after seasons apart. And while it was an emotional and thrilling moment, one of the best scenes was a surprising interaction between Arya and Brienne.
Brienne is training her squire Podrick in the art of sword-fighting, something he still struggles with despite Brienne's best efforts. While she continuously knocks him to the ground, Arya stumbles upon the lessons and interjects. Brienne compliments her sword, Needle, a gift from Jon Snow back in season one, and her newly acquired dagger, given to her by Bran.
This isn't the first time the two fighters have met.
Back on season four, while Brienne and Podrick were hunting for Sansa, they stumbled upon Arya who was traveling with the Hound. Brienne and Arya bonded over both being told that fighting was only for boys before Brienne realized that Arya was a Stark daughter.
When she tried to take Arya away, the Hound stepped in and Brienne and him had an epic fight in which the Hound was left for dead.
Arya brings this memory up after mentioning that she wants to train.
"It's been a while since I've trained," Arya says.
"I can go and find the master of arms for you, my lady," Brienne responds.
"He didn't beat the Hound," Arya replies. "You did. I want to train with you."
But it doesn't look like Arya needs much training. In what is one of the best fight sequences featured on "Game of Thrones," the two fighters put all of their effort into beating each other, and Arya proves that she has learned how to use her sword. At one point, she loses Needle, but still manages to come out on top, thanks to the dagger.
"Who taught you how to do that?" a very impressed Brienne asks.
"No one," Arya says, which is technically true and a fun throwback to the lessons she had with the Faceless Men on seasons five and six.
In addition to being a badass fight scene, there is also a deeper meaning behind it.
When Sansa is finally reunited with Arya in the Stark crypts, Arya mentions that she has a kill list. Sansa laughs about it, so Arya does as well. Later, when Arya, Sansa, and Bran are finally all together, Bran also brings up Arya's list. But it's not until Sansa watches Arya fight that she realizes her sister is no longer the little innocent girl she once was.
In a behind-the-scenes short after the episode, showrunner David Benioff explains the importance of Sansa's realization.
"Sansa doesn't really know much about where Arya's gone or what she's done since they last saw each other," he says. "This scene, more than anything else, tells her what she's been up to. And the fact is, Brienne is a pretty legendary swordswoman, and it looks like Arya maybe beat her...Arya is really good at killing people. That's a bit worrisome."
In any case, Arya is finally home, and the Stark family is almost all together again.
Warning: There are spoilers ahead for Sunday's episode of "Game of Thrones."
"Game of Thrones" finally gave fans the reunion they've been waiting for and it was worth it.
On Sunday's episode, "The Spoils of War," Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) finally made her way back to Winterfell. And though she wasn't immediately welcomed back, fans finally got to see her reunite with her sister Sansa (Sophie Turner). The two Stark sisters haven't been on screen together since the end of season one when their father was killed. Arya ran off while Sansa was to be wed to Joffrey Lannister.
The moment between the sisters as they reunited at their father's tomb was a bright spot in a show that doesn't allow many cheerful moments. It was made all the more emotional when you know the actresses who play the roles are best friends in real life. The two hang out often, have matching "Thrones" tattoos, and even have a friendship name, Mophie.
Fans loved every moment of the Stark sisters on screen together for the first time in years.
IM CRYING ARYA AND SANSA AND BRAN REUNITED IM FJSKDK— lucy 🐲 (@fraankcastle) August 7, 2017
"Our stories aren't over yet"😭— Erin O'Hagan (@ErinOHagan1) August 7, 2017
SANSA AND ARYA FOREVER pic.twitter.com/UBikGGpysC
That Sister - love is BEAUTIFUL! & Arya was right - Sansa does need better Guards for real.— Michele Bradley (@bradley7268) August 7, 2017
Even Williams got in on the Stark reunion fun.
Both Williams and Turner spoke to Entertainment Weekly about their emotional moment in the tomb and it was a tough one for the best buds to film.
"Our first scene together was our reunion scene and we f—ed up so many times," Turner told EW. "We couldn’t keep a straight face! Our relationship is so close, but it’s only that fun side, never the business side. I was nervous. It just terrified me."
Williams said the two friends were a little embarrassed to act in front of each other since they casually hang out so often.
"It took a few hours for us to get serious and actually do it. Later it was fine on set and we could concentrate, but it was so hard to get into character with Sophie in front of me."
Arya and Sansa have had a strained relationship before now. Arya's fight with Joffrey in season one led to the death of her sister's direwolf. The two characters have come a long way in six seasons and are far removed from the squabbling girls they were when their parents were there to protect them. Still, executive producer and writer David Benioff hints in a behind-the-scenes featurette released by HBO for the episode, that not all may be perfect between the sisters.
"In some ways they're very similar to who they were except moreso. Sansa always wanted to be a lady. Arya always kind of wanted to be a fighter. In other ways, they're so different than they last were when they saw each other. Both of them have had difficult journeys and difficult in their own ways," said Benioff. "I think they come to respect the other in terms of how they've grown as people, but at the same, that doesn't diminish the tension between them."
One possible source for that tension could be in Sansa discovering that her sister is a skilled fighter, and, not just a fighter, but a trained assassin. From the look on her face as she watched Arya go toe-to-toe with legendary fighter Brienne, that may be slightly worrisome.
It will be interesting to see how their relationship will continue forth, especially with Little Finger keeping a close watch over the Stark children.
You can check out the full behind-the-scenes featurette from HBO below:
Warning: Spoilers ahead for "Game of Thrones" season seven, episode four, "Spoils of War."
"Spoils of War" might go down in "Game of Thrones" history as one of the best episodes of all time thanks to the epic Lannister vs. Dothraki/Drogon battle and another memorable Stark family reunion. But hidden among all the madness were more references to older episodes and smaller important details you might have missed.
Keep reading for a look at the nine biggest moments.
Bran repeated the iconic "chaos is a ladder" line back to Littlefinger, revealing that he knows about Lord Baelish's true intentions.
Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish tried and failed to rattle Bran by giving him the same blade used by the cutthroat to kill Bran on the first season. Then he tried to get Bran to divulge information about what he'd been up to beyond the Wall.
"To go through all of that and make your way home again only to find so much chaos in the world," Littlefinger said. " I can only imagine —"
"Chaos is a ladder," Bran said, interrupting.
This was what Littlefinger told Varys on season three, when he revealed that he had been manipulating Sansa and Joffrey the whole time.
For most of the earlier seasons, Littlefinger's motivations were mysterious. But he laid out his cards on the third season when he told Varys that creating chaos was his mechanism of ascending the rungs of power in Westeros.
"Chaos isn't a pit. Chaos is a ladder," he told Varys. "Many who try to climb it fail, and never get to try again — the fall breaks them. And some are given a chance to climb, but they refuse. They cling to the realm, or the gods, or love ... illusions. Only the ladder is real, the climb is all there is."
If Bran has seen this conversation through his greensight visions, it means he probably knows about everything Littlefinger has done — including betraying his father Ned.
Arya's struggle with entering Winterfell was a perfect mirror to the first season when she accidentally left the Red Keep.
When Arya finally made it to Winterfell, she was stopped at the gates by two guards who refused to believe she was really Arya Stark. The same thing happened to her on the first season when she was chasing cats and got lost in the dungeons of the Red Keep.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
Warning: Spoilers ahead for HBO's "Game of Thrones" season seven, episode four, titled "Spoils of War."
Fire ruled the day on the newest episode of "Game of Thrones."
Clocking in at just 50 minutes, "Spoils of War" is the shortest episode of the series. But it sure packed a punch.
Daenerys decided she couldn't sit back and let the Lannister army take Highgarden without some retribution and fights back, dragons blazing. Meanwhile, Arya returned home to Winterfell in a joyous reunion with Sansa, a kick-ass sparring with Brienne, and an awkward meeting with Bran, aka the new Three-eyed Raven. And as a result, Jaime's life was in danger as the show ended with a cliffhanger.
But which moments had fans talking the most?
Social-media monitoring platform Brandwatch found more than 31,500 "Thrones"-related mentions on Twitter during the 50 minutes it aired on HBO and identified the scenes when conversation peaked.
Here are the five most talked-about moments from the latest "Game of Thrones" episode:
5. Finally! Fans went nuts over the Stark family reunion between Sansa, Bran, and Arya.
9:22 p.m. ET – around 550 mentions
While the sisters (and real life BFFs) gleefully embraced each other earlier, there was a different tone to Arya's reunion with Bran. As the Three-eyed Raven, he certainly wasn't as warm upon seeing her.
Guys.... I'm pretty sure Bran is THE WORST. #GameOfThrones
Also, fans are having a field day with Sansa looking like the most boring Stark.
Sansa: I majored in political science but my siblings joined two different cults in college and now things are weird at home #GameOfThrones
Jon: I died and came back to life.
Bran: Caw caw I'm a bird.
Arya: I'm a magical assassin.
4. Fans were thrilled by the episode's big battle. But the standouts for viewers were Bronn's bravery in the face of certain defeat and Daenerys' command of "Dracarys," which is High Valyrian for dragonfire.
9:46 p.m. ET – Around 590 mentions
Bronn had to survive several Dothraki attackers to make it to Cersei's dragon-killing weapon. But although wounded, Dragon still had something extra for a charging Jaime. Bronn pulled the Lannister out of harm's way, but the river may be trying to finish the job... or not.
Jamie: "We can hold them off."
Danaerys: "LOL, DRACARYS"#gameofthrones
Daenerys and Drogon: Season 1 vs Season 7: #GameOfThronespic.twitter.com/wYRd9kIn62
The most underpaid man in Westeros.
Give this man a castle! #GameOfThrones#MVPpic.twitter.com/WZAtnQhcJR
3. All hail Drogon!
9:44 p.m. ET and 9:42 p.m. ET (tie) – around 710 mentions for both moments
Viewers celebrated the dragon for its mighty showing during the Lannister battle. They were so taken by Drogon's performance, moments during the scene peaked not once, but twice. It remains to be seen how much damage Bronn was able to cause though.
Still the best damn thing I saw... #drogon#gameofthronespic.twitter.com/tZH0S2HviQ
That was literally LIT. #GameOfThronespic.twitter.com/PYixgsEfO6
See the rest of the story at Business Insider
On Sunday's episode of "Last Week Tonight," host John Oliver took a deep dive into the border patrol, and specifically the agents who guard our southern borders.
He found some troubling revelations.
With President Trump signing an executive order to hire 5,000 more agents to assist the 20,000 who already are on our borders, Oliver painted a cautionary tale in the hopes that the hiring process goes better than the last time.
Oliver explained that border patrol agents have a tough job. They have to be a humanitarian in some occassions and law enforcer in others. It's a unique task that not everyone can pull off, and for many in the government, that's obvious, because the last hiring surge for border agents led to some horrible hires.
In a post-9/11 move, President George W. Bush beefed up the border patrol from 10,000 agents to 20,000. And recruitment was very aggressive. Commercials promoted the job as you spending your days racing on ATVs, helicopters, or on horseback to apprehend drug runners and other nefarious people.
And though that can happen at times, often a border patrol agent is working alone surveying miles and miles of terrain. They sometimes don't see a single person for days.
"Boredom is a significant part of life as a border patrol agent and they should probably train for it," Oliver said. "For every hour they spend in target practice they should probably spend ten hours watching 'Mozart in the Jungle.'"
That kind of job, combined with the fact that many who were hired during the surge were not fit for the job, led to some damaging repercussions.
Over the years, corruption and misconduct skyrocketed. At one point, the border patrol was averaging two alcohol-related arrests per week. Oliver pointed out one incident when two border patrol agents were put on leave for allegedly performing a sex act during a Cirque du Soleil show.
"Both denied that anything sexual was happening, and they were found not guilty of the sex act, presumably because they were at Cirque du Soleil where everything looks like a sex act," Oliver said.
Since 2005, 77 agents have been arrested or indicted on charges of corruption.
One incredible example Oliver gave is a border patrol agent who was convicted of engaging in organized crime. It turns out he had a brother in the Gulf drug cartel in Mexico, and the evidence that linked him to the cartel was that a safe the agent owned contained $89,000 in cash, the agent's commemorative border patrol badge, cocaine, methamphetamine, and a gun that said "Gulf cartel" on it.
This agent was hired during the last surge.
The irony of all this is that there may not be a need for more border patrol agents. In a report in July, the Inspector General of Homeland Security questioned if 5,000 more agents were required. And Oliver showed that the apprehensions of undocumented Mexican immigrants has dropped from 404,365 in 2010 to 192,969 in 2016.
"This is a story about the danger of not learning from your mistakes and for the sake of absolutely everybody — people on both sides of the border, and the good border patrol agents just trying to do a difficult job well — if we are going to hire all these new people, the very least we can do is be more careful this time around," Oliver said.
Watch the entire story below: