May 12, 2014
Game Of Thrones Recap: Well, That Was Disturbing
After an exciting week, what with all the killings and all, Game of Thrones decided to take the foot off the pedal this week, and slow things down a bit. Oh don’t worry — there was still a heaping helping of our firm and perky Double Bs – blood and boobs, along with a tad of rape thrown in to the mix just to be disturbing. Grab your chain mail and favorite blade, and let’s get our recap on.
We start where last week left off, adrenaline still pouring through our veins as we see Joffrey dead in his mother’s arms, and Cersei (at the risk of sounding sexist) screaming hysterically that Tyrion did it. Then she asks about Sansa. We see the guards arrest Tyrion as Sansa quickly and quietly sneaks away with Joffrey’s fool, Ser Dontos. Lord Tywin screams that no one shall leave the city. Sansa and Ser Dontos run through the city, eventually finding a hidden rowboat and going, “somewhere safe,” Dontos tells Sansa. They row to a ship that looks like an abandoned Pirates of the Caribbean ghost ship. Who do we find aboard?
None other than Tommy Carcetti Lord Petyr Baelish, or Littlefinger. He tells Sansa that she is safe, and then pays the good Ser Dontos, still waiting in the little rowboat, his reward. But instead of the gold he was promised, he gets several crossbow bolts. Baelish explains to Sansa, “Money buys a man’s silence for a time. A bolt through the heart buys it forever.” Remind us to keep Littlefinger on our good side. But we are left with questions. How did Ser Dontos know to grab Sansa at the reception? Did Littlefinger just figure that a wedding would provide a distraction enabling Sansa to get away? Or is there more to it???
We turn to Margaery and her grandmother, chatting about what happens now. Margaery is told that while she is technically queen, it would have been a stronger claim if she had been both wedded and bedded, rather than just wedded. But her grandmother goes on to note, “You may not have enjoyed watching him die, but you enjoyed it more than being married to him, I can promise you that.” Amen, Lady Tyrell. But was there a twinkle in her eye? Could an old lady be the murderer? We don’t know. She also notes that the alliance with the Lannisters continues to be strong, out of necessity.
Speaking of Joffrey, we turn to him lying in state at the Great Sept, with his mother and brother, Tommen. He looks peaceful, but we still can’t muster any sympathy for the little monster. Lord Tywin comes to quiz little Tommen about the virtues of a good king. Through their discussion of piousness, justice, and strength, we hear a bit about the history of Westeros and of kings gone by, almost like a sales pitch for an upcoming book. After ruling out pious, just, and strong, they finally settle on wisdom, which is explained as listening to your advisors (read: Lord Tywin). Cersei just sits there, staring blankly at Joffrey. As they walk out of the Sept, Tommen’s grandfather is asking if he knows where babies come from, and at that moment, his “Uncle” Jamie comes into the Sept. Well done, guys!
Jamie clears the Sept , so it’s just him, Cersei, and their dead incest-monster-child. Cersei begs Jamie to kill Tyrion, absolutely convinced he is the murderer. She remembers him saying to her once, “The day will come when you think you are safe and happy. Then your joy will turn to ashes in your mouth.” Rather poetic, but hardly damning evidence. Jamie is aghast at the thought of killing his own brother, noting that there will be a trial. Cersei doesn’t want a trial — she wants REVENGE.
They then kiss, right beside Joffrey’s corpse. Cersei pulls away, and Jamie says, “You’re a hateful woman. Why have the gods made me love a hateful woman?” He then proceeds to grab her and kiss her, ripping at her garments. And as she continually says, “No, no, stop, stop, it’s not right,” he takes her, saying, “I don’t care.” Rape. On the floor of the Great Sept. Beside their dead son. Holy fuck was it disturbing. Seriously, like a million shades of not ok, and even disturbing for Game of Thrones.
For those of you keeping track of Jamie’s moral compass: fratricide is bad, but raping your sister beside the incestuous corpse of your son in a holy place is ok.
As a palate cleanser, we are reunited with The Hound and Arya as they continue to travel to The Eyrie.
A kindly farmer takes them in for the night, after Arya does some quick thinking, lying and saying that The Hound is her father who fought for the Tully’s of Riverrun. They Hound is full of his usual charm, complaining about the prayer to the seven gods, and eating like a pig at the trough. They discuss the Red Wedding, noting the tragedy of the demise of civility and keeping people safe when they are guests. Haha, foreshadowing! The kindly farmer offers silver to have them stay on for a month, to help with the farm and keep away thieves. Bad move. The Hound accepts, and then in the morning, beats the old man and takes the silver. He explains to Arya that the man was weak and would be dead by the end of winter, and dead men don’t need silver. When Arya calls him, “the worst shit in the seven kingdoms,” (a phrase we may adopt), The Hound responds with, “Plenty worse than me. I just understand the way things are. How many Starks they have to behead before you figure it out.” All class, that one.
At The Wall, Sam “The Slayer” Tarly is trying hard to take care Gilly and the baby, suggesting that she would be safer in Molestown. He arranges for her to cook and clean in the whorehouse there, but makes clear she is not to do any additional work. They fight, because Gilly thinks Sam is abandoning her, and the little baby Sam cries a lot.
Stannis and Ser Davos argue about how to win the Iron Throne, not that they get word that Joffrey is dead. Stannis is convinced that Joffrey died because of the black magic he has been using, and the Onion Knight says that they need soldiers to win wars, suggesting buying a company of sellswords from across the narrow Sea. Stannis hates the idea, and reminds him that they have next to no gold. Davos goes for his reading lesson, where he gets an idea to write a letter to the Iron Bank of Braavos from Stannis.
Prince Oberyn finally gets that orgy he was looking for, explaining to his male lover that he sees no need to deprive himself of any physical pleasure, male or female. He then gives some sage advice, like some sort of Westeros version of Dan Savage:
“Someday, if you are lucky, you will wake up and realize that you are old. That pretty ass of yours will sag. Your belly will grow soft, and your back will ache in the night and grey hairs will sprout from your ears. No one will want you anymore. Make sure you fucked your fill before that day.”
His orgy and philosophy class are interrupted by Lord Tywin, who asks Prince Oberyn if he poisoned Joffrey. He denies it. Then Lord Tywin denies that The Mountain was following orders when he raped and killed Prince Oberyn’s sister. Prince Oberyn notes that he wants to meet The Mountain, and Lord Tywin promises that opportunity, for a price. Lord Tywin asks the Prince to be on tribunal to judge Tyrion, and also sit on the Small Council. Oberyn is questioning, and Lord Tywin reminds him that there is a Targaryen girl with dragons across the Narrow Sea who will eventually turn her eyes towards Westeros, and Dorne was the only place not conquered the first time around. Strategery, people.
Then we see Pod checking in on Tyrion, who is told about the trial to come in a fortnight. He’s about the only person we believe didn’t kill Joffrey, yet he is the one who is arrested and in jail. Pod tells Tyrion that Sansa has skipped town, and Tyrion tells Pod to send Jamie to him, then leave town while he still can, before he is killed through association.
We head back to the North for some good old fashioned slaughtering. We see the Wildling invaders attacking and butchering a small village. Ygritte is there, looking fierce and angry with her bow, and the Thenns feasting on human flesh. The Thenn leader grabs a small boy, and tells him that he is going to eat the boy’s mother and father. He then asks the boy to run to Castle Black to tell the Crows what is happening.
At Castle Black, we see the debate among the Crows about whether or not to stop the Wildlings south of the Wall. They decide against it, because there are only 100 men at Castle Black, and they will all be needed if Mance Rayder attacks. Then a few rangers return, noting that there are still outlaw Night Watchmen at Craster’s place. Jon Snow makes a passionate plea to ride out and kill them, before they tell Mance Rayder that they only have 100 men at Castle Black, not the thousand that Jon Snow told him. Tension mounts at The Wall.
Finally, we see Daenerys, who looks regal and damn sexy riding her horse up to the walls of Mereen. Seriously, how does she manage to have an authoritative swagger, on a horse, and manage to look soooooo fine? Amazing and we heart her so hard.
Mereen sends out a champion, who taunts Daenerys, claiming that she is no woman at all, but merely a “man who hides his own cock in his asshole.” Daenerys is unamused, but picks a champion nonetheless. After several people volunteer, she settles upon Daario. Will we have an epic fight between these two champions? Will there be a swordfight that leaves us breathless?
No, we get none of these. We get an Indiana Jones-esque scene. The Meereen champion is charging on his horse as Daario waits patiently. Then, when the horse is about 30 paces away, Daario throws a dagger right between the horse’s eyes. The horse falls, the champion tumbles to Daario’s feet, where he is promptly killed. Daario then… relieves himself… in the direction of Meereen.
Daenerys gives a rousing speech to those watching from inside the city walls, noting that she has visited several cities, and now people follow her freely. The slaves of Meereen, wearing slave collars, listen intently as she discusses freeing other slaves. Then Daenerys launches barrels at the city, which smash on the buildings and rain down broken slave collars. Thousands of broken slave collars.
We end with slaves inside Meereen, holding broken collars, looking at their masters.
We are still left wondering who killed Joffrey, how in the hells Stannis will try to take the Iron Throne, and what will happen at The Wall and with the Mother of Dragons. Enough to keep us intrigued, but we do hope that is the last brother-sister rape scene we ever have to see, because that still disturbs us.
Here’s a preview of next week’s episode, which has Cersei asking Jamie to bring her Sansa’s head, drama at The Wall, more with Littlefinger and Sansa, and Daenerys promising more of her kind of justice.
Be sure to watch Sundays at 9 pm on HBO.
Catch up in the archives.