I want to talk about the trial, more specifically I want to talk about the changes they made the Shae.
I'm kind of disheartened that they altered her character to make it seem like she was angry with Tyrion for sending her away, making it seem like she believed his words. Even if she was heartbroken, she would have known that he was doing this not to be intentionally cruel to her. It seemed out of character since she has heard and witnessed firsthand the kind of people the Lannisters are. Of course while I can understand if she was coerced by Tywin to say these things, the fact that she betrayed Sansa like that is unforgivable. She would never, ever do that, no matter what her current feelings about Tyrion would be. It destroys everything that was originally setup with the relationship between Sansa and Shae within the show. Remember how they bonded, how Shae protected her, how she even admitted that she loved Sansa and would have killed for her? Where did all that go? Why would they spend time on developing that relationship if they weren't going to have Shae care about her at all during this scene?
The fact that the actress herself actually argued and fought with D&D over this particular issue, and was denied, speaks volumes.
What happens next is inevitable, I know that, but there were other ways of getting to that point without resorting to having Shae betray Sansa as well. She would have killed for her, and I would have believed that she would have accepted to testify if only she were to do so in protecting Sansa in the process. For it to happen this way that it did made no sense. Just, ugh. I'm very disappointed and upset over this, honestly. It was a beautiful relationship between those two girls, something that was changed from the books that I actually liked, so to change it to make it seem like Shae didn't care about Sansa if only to punish Tyrion was very stupid and idiotic for the writers to do.
But, just like with the horrendous rape scene between Jaime and Cersei, the show changes things that messes with even its own continuity. Sighs.
Having said that, though, here are some other things that didn't disappoint me in this episode:
++ The actual trial was nevertheless great to watch. All the tension, the facial expressions, the fact that we see Tyrion go through the motions and then his anger erupting towards the end. As much as I hated that Shae's character was butchered in such a way, Peter did a magnificent job at unleashing the venom when speaking to the people of the court, realizing that no matter what everyone who he thought was his friend was going to be turned against him (except for Jaime, who has been on his side and fighting for him to not be executed), and that he was going to be made out to be guilty no matter what.
++ Oberyn Martell continues to give me life. I wish we had more of Ellaria though, but his scenes are always a pleasure to watch. His scenes with everyone is fascinating, from him sitting in on the council, speaking with Varys, to his moments during the trial. And him leaning forward when Tyrion says that he would have a trial by combat was great.
++ Asha Greyjoy also continues to give me life. I'm glad that we got at least more than a few seconds of her, and we saw her in action trying to get her brother out. Though poor, broken Theon. :(
++ We're officially introduced to Hizdahr zo Loraq, who actually doesn't appear in the books until A Dance With Dragons, so this is definitely setting up for what will be happening with Dany's storyline later.
++ I liked that we're seeing Dany deal with the people of Meereen, fulfilling duties as a queen by hearing the words of the people, even if it's excruciatingly long and exhausting. She's trying to be a fair ruler of the city, even if she has to make some compromises. Also the dealing with her dragons, getting bigger and eating goats, which will cause much problems later. Her hearing and dealing with Hizdahr zo Loraq was interesting to see, as this won't be their only encounter.
++ Oh, and I like that we're seeing her whereabouts and what is happening with her being discussed in King's Landing.
++ Braavos looks amazing.
Overall: It was a good episode, my only issue with it aside. The trial was great, and I can't wait for the trial by combat. But it's actually the next episode that I cannot wait for, honestly, because SANSA! SNOW CASTLE! :D