May 19, 2014
Game Of Thrones: Death, More Death, A Wedding, And Finally More Death
Do you like death? How about gruesome deaths? Old-fashioned burning-at-the-stake deaths? Deaths shrouded in mystery? If the answer to all these is yes, then Game of Thrones is right up your alley this week! If you don’t like death… well, there was also a wedding. And with GoT, what could possibly go wrong at a wedding?!?! Let’s get our recap on.
If you watched the show, we’ll get to the wedding. But first we have to check in on what else happened, because we want to recap the WHOLE show, not just the shocking ending, which is shocking and you will be shocked at the end of this post.
We begin with death. Bolton’s bastard, Ramsey Snow, is running through the woods with some hunting dogs, chasing big game. Theon Greyjoy, now Reek, is hobbling behind his new master, looking thoroughly pathetic. Ramsey fires an arrow, striking a tree right next to his game. Did we mention that they are hunting a teenage girl? Fun times. Ramsey’s female companion finally shoots the hunted girl in the leg. As she begs for her life, Ramsey decides to let the dogs finish her off, so we’re off to a rollicking gruesome start.
We later see that Reek has been tortured to the extent that he no longer responds to the name ‘Theon Greyjoy,’ and is even docile enough to shave his tormentor, Ramsey Snow. Ramsey has also learned that Bran and Rickon are alive, telling his father, Lord Roose Bolton, who has been promised the north. Stupid surviving Starks, ruining Bolton’s plans.
We’ll go ahead and note that Arya Stark does not make an appearance this week, which gives us a sad.
But speaking of Starks, we do catch up with Bran as he travels north of The Wall with Hodor, Jojen, and Meera. We are reminded that Bran is a warg, one who can mentally inhabit an animal, in this case, his direworlf. He then finds a weirwood tree, touches it, and has crazy visions that flash across the screen too fast to fully comprehend, although the Iron Throne was definitely a part of it. And then he knows that he must travel further north to get to where he needs to be.
Then, since there have been literally minutes without death, we head to Dragonstone where Stannis is seeking the favor of the Lord of Light. Because the night is dark and full of terrors, he lights up the night with bonfires. And just to be sure to curry favor, he includes some people tied to the stake in the midst of the bonfires, including his own brother-in-law. Stannis seems to be going all-in on the side of Melisandre and the Lord of Light. Is he truly a religious fanatic? Or does he just see that this dark magic is working? Who knows, but the bodies are piling up fast.
Back in King’s Landing, we get to the heart of the episode, the royal wedding between teen heartthrob and sadistic asshole King Joffrey and the lovely Margaery Tyrell. Before the wedding, we see Tyrion continue to show a softer side, offering to have Bronn help secretly train his one-handed brother Jamie, so that Jamie can practice using a sword in his left (only) hand.
Also before the wedding, our favorite spider, Lord Varys, pulls Tyrion aside and says that another of Sansa’s servants has reported Shae to Cersei, and offers to help get her out of town. Tyrion reluctantly agrees. In his chambers, he yells at Shae, calling her a ‘whore’ about eight times, and then has Bronn take her to the docks to get on a ship. Once again, Tyrion seems to be acting in a way to help others, and we are beginning to like the little man more and more.
Before the wedding, there is the tradition bestowing of gifts to the royal couple. Tyrion, ever seeking to improve the mind and temperament of Joffrey, presents a thick book, “The Lives of Four Kings.” Joffrey, surprisingly not an asshole for just a moment, says nice things to his uncle about it being peacetime and we should all seek wisdom. That lasts a whole minute or so, until his grandfather presents him with a Valyrian steel blade. Like the douche he is, he seeks a name for it, and settles on Widow’s Wail. Then he tests it out on the very book his uncle gave him, proving before all the kingdom that no book of learning is safe in his kingdom. He also brags about how he will remember chopping off Ned Stark’s head every time he uses the sword, hoping no one remembers that he only gave the order and had his headsman do the dirty work.
On to the wedding, where it’s a beautiful ceremony and NO ONE DIES! Not normally something to celebrate, but this is a high-profile ceremony in Westeros, so let’s enjoy the little things.
At the reception, we are treated with little snippets of conversation between characters who are usually not together. Prince Oberyn makes eyes at Ser Loras while being overlyfriendly with his lady friend. Tywin Lannister and Lady Olenna Tyrell have some witty conversation about the costs of weddings and wars. Jamie Lannister threatens Loras, saying that he will never marry Cersei. Loras comes back with, “And neither will you,” mocking Jamie for the incest that is now pretty much common knowledge. Olenna Tyrell invites Sansa to come visit her when the wedding is over, making a veiled reference to the Red Wedding. Cersei and Brienne have words about Jamie, and Cersei learns that Brienne loves him. And finally, Prince Oberyn confronts Tywin and Cersei, threateningly reminding them that Cersei’s daughter, Myrcella, is in Dorne. Drama all over the place.
But let’s move on to our favorite sadistic bastard, King Joffrey. Bored with a beautiful musical rendition, he throws rudely throws some coins at musicians to make them leave the staging area. Beautiful music is not the King’s taste, but rather a classless comedic romp of midgets acting out the War of the Five Kings. The bawdy play shows Renly Baratheon repeatedly stabbed in the bum, clearly noting that he was a ‘pillowbiter.’ And it ends with the little person playing King Joffrey play-humping the wolf mask that represented Robb Stark. Joffrey is laughing hysterically, while the rest of the guests are pretty horrified. All the class we have come to expect.
Next, the King asks Tyrion to join the little people, that surely there must be another costume available. Ain’t Joffrey the sweetest? Tyrion responds with a very proper response mocking the king for lack of bravery at the Battle of Blackwater. Knowing he cannot outwit his uncle, Joffrey does the sensible thing. He walks over to Tyrion and pours his wine over his uncle’s head. Class motherfucking act.
Even as Margaery tries to draw Joffrey back to the important things, Joffrey can’t help his nature, and demands that Tyrion be his cupbearer. Joffrey drops the goblet, then kicks it under the table, forcing Tyrion to crawl around to retrieve it. Sansa decides to help her husband, and picks up the goblet and hands it to Tyrion. Joffrey then demands that an empty goblet is useless, so Tyrion fills it with wine. Joffrey demands that Tyrion kneel before the king. Tyrion just stands there. They stare at each other, neither giving an inch. The tension ends when Margaery yells that the wedding cake has arrived.
Tyrion seeks to slink away as they are eating cake (although only Joffrey eats the cake), but Joffrey demands more wine. When Tyrion fills the goblet, he asks if he and Lady Sansa can leave.
As Joffrey begins to demand that they stay, he starts to cough. Then he begins to choke. He stumbles forward, and both Cersei and Jamie are there to try to help him, but nothing can be done. Eyes bulging and mouth frothing, blood running from his nose, King Joffrey appears to be dying.
At this moment, we cut away to see Ser Dontas, the fool, coming up behind Lady Sansa and telling her that now is her chance to escape, but she must come immediately.
Joffery, eyes bloodshot, is cradled in his mother’s lap as he finally dies. Drat… who are we going to love to hate now? He was such a perfect little monster, completely sadistic in every way.
As he dies, his arms are flailing, but are they pointing at something? Perhaps someone? Cersei immediately thinks that Tyrion has poisoned the King, and the episode ends with Tyrion being arrested.
But who did it? Was is Tyrion? Perhaps Olenna Tyrell did not want her daughter married to such a monster? Or did Sansa put something in the goblet before she handed it to Tyrion? Maybe the cake was poisoned? Is this whole season just a dream? Will weddings now be outlawed in Westeros? All we do know is that this episode started and ended with death, so no one in Westeros is safe.
Next week, we pick back up with Daenerys and her adventures across the Narrow Sea. We also see what’s happening up at The Wall. Oh, and does Tyrion lose his head? Who knows.
Here’s the Episode 3 preview, and as a reminder, Game of Thrones airs Sundays at 9 pm on HBO.