Thursday, October 3, 2013

A Monthly Dose of Westeros-Part 5: Daenerys Targaryen

I guess it’s not-so-monthly now...but still, I will be providing my thoughts and predictions for one storyline every month until the show’s return. Since I have read the books, I know what should happen, but several plots seem to be taking turns away from the original material, while others are almost spot on. I will examine these apparent changes/accuracy, and do my best to avoid spoilers in “A Monthly Dose of Westeros”.

Two of the most interesting pieces of season four casting news were revealed recently, and since both have ties to Daenerys Targaryen's storyline, I thought this would be a good time to preview her. Everybody's favorite khaleesi is still in Essos after three seasons. She and her dragons have been conquering the cities in Slaver's Bay, while building an army of fearless warriors that will be used to conquer Westeros...eventually. Dany has been accompanied by Ser Jorah Mormont this whole time and recently added to her entourage discarded Kingsguard member Barristan Selmy, sellsword captain Daario Naharis, and Unsullied captain Grey Worm. Jorah, Daario and Grey Worm do make a pretty dang good team, so Dany is in good hands.

Daenerys' storyline in A Storm of Swords is pretty much finished in the show at this point, and if you're expecting her to invade Westeros...stop. She isn't going this season so don't get your hopes up. There will be more conquering, more fighting, and more stupid Dany. Jorah, Barristan, and Daario do have some pretty interesting moments coming up (especially Jorah), but Dany will pretty much keep doing the same thing. A large group of characters from Westeros will be making their way to Essos to see Dany though, resulting in what George R.R. Martin called the Meereenese Knot, but they still have some story left to go through. Which brings me to my next point...

Hizdahr zo Loraq has been cast. Hizdahr is a very important character in Dany's Meereen plot, but that piece of her story does not begin until much later in the books than the point the show is it. It seems like the writers are moving Daenerys along pretty fast, faster than some other characters who need to meet up with her, so I don't really get the fast pace for her. Joel Fry will play Hizdahr and, while I don't know anything about his talents, he looks almost exactly how I pictured Hizdahr while reading. So at least the show runners got looks right this time...

...which brings me to the last piece of news. Daario Naharis has been recast.

Yes, Ed Skrein is being replaced as Daario. The role will be taken over by Michiel Huisman. I know for a fact that Huisman is a tremendous actor, but he looks nothing like Skrein and even less like a Daario. Skrein caught some flack for his portrayal of Daario, as some thought he was too white-washed and plain. Book-Daario had blue hair and three-pronged blue beard. Show-Daario was this:

Ed Skrein as Daario Naharis; Michiel Huisman in Treme
Huisman looks farther from my image of Daario than Skrein did, but I really enjoyed Skrein's Daario. I looked at the first photos of the new Daario while in class and the person next to me leaned over and we agreed that he looked more like a hobo than a warrior captain.

Huisman dressed(?) as Daario via
Anyway, I'm sure Huisman's acting will be great even if he doesn't have the Daario look. But other than that, expect nothing too huge to come out of Daenerys' story this season, although Jorah will have a few special moments. Dany has been a major character in the show thus far, but hopefully she takes a backseat to some of the more important events happening in Westeros this season.