Well, did you see it? Are the haunting strings of "The Rains of Castamere" still playing in your head? Are you still so devastated you sometimes find yourself just staring blankly at the walls wondering what heartless god made the world such a cruel and brutal place? I am of course talking about the now-forever-infamous Red Wedding episode of Game of Thrones that aired last Sunday evening, a show that divided fans into two distinct groups: those who had read the books and were all like, "I totally knew this was going to happen so why am I still crying?" and those who are still shellshocked because HOLY CRAP WHAT JUST HAPPENED.
In fact, I'd say for most of the viewers who didn't know what was coming, our emotions during this particular Game of Thrones episode fell perfectly in line with the classic 5 stages of grief as defined by death expert Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. Let's start with our first reaction:
Denial. "Hey, I bet this Walder Frey guy really is ready to forgive the Starks. What'd he just say, something about 'The wine will flow red and the music will play loud and we'll put this mess behind us'? Awesome. Everyone's gonna get drunk on Cabernet and play some Skynyrd and -- hmmm. Why'd that guy just shut the doors to the hall like that? Oh, I bet he's just keeping it warm, it's probably cold outside. Say, does it seem like there's a lot of focus on the wedding musicians all of a sudden? Isn't that kind of a dramatic tune for a wedding? What's up with Catelyn, why's she all freaked out? Does that guy have chain mail on? Well, I'm sure there's a perfectly logical explanation for all of this and pretty soon we'll get back to the Hound gnawing on that pig foot. Ha, that was so gross! Boy, I sure am happy for Robb and Talisa. And Edmure got the only hot daughter! All's well that ends well."
Anger. "WHAT THE FUCK IS HAPPENING? OH MY GOD OH MY GOD HER PREGNANT BELLY OH MY GOD ROBB CATELYN WHAT IS EVEN?!?!?!?? NO! NO! NO! NO! OH MY GOD I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS! I SWEAR ON ALL THAT IS HOLY I WILL PERSONALLY AVENGE ALL YOUR DEATHS I'M DRIVING TO HBO RIGHT NOW WHERE IS THAT RATSHIT JOFFREY OH MY GOD NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO."
Bargaining. "Okay hold on, if everyone gets to a hospital right now they'll be fine. They'll be fine. Surgeons can work miracles these days. If you just stop this show right now and get everyone some medical attention from those -- what, those guys with the big necklaces, the whatchamacallits, the maesters, just ... just sew up her throat, and fix her belly, and get that sword out of his ... and ... please, I promise I will never, ever miss a single episode ever again. I promise I will read all the goddamned books. I ... I ..."
Depression. "They even killed the direwolf. My god, even the direwolf. There's no reason to go on living. For any of us. The night is dark and full of terrors. Winter can come right the fuck now, I don't even care any more. I don't care about anything."
Acceptance. "They're dead. They're all dead and there's nothing I can do but remember them as they were and see what happens next. Thank god for these silent credits so I can properly sit here slackjawed and drooling. Holy crap, what a show."
Acceptance, part 2. "LOL, Maisie Williams!"
How did you react to the Red Wedding episode?
Image via HBO