Game of Thrones: Hardhome. Did they really just confirm [SPOILER]??

Well we ended last week with Jorah delivering his gift to Dany and her not really knowing what to do with him. It looks like right now not much has changed in that aspect.

Dany and Tyrion

We open up this episode with Dany questioning Tyrion about why she shouldn’t just kill him right now (which she has a point) and asking Tyrion what he thinks she should do with Jorah (who she told she’d kill if he came back).

Tyrion points out that he’s kill more Lannisters than anyone else she knows and that he knows more about her than she probably knows about herself. I’m glad that Dany seems to be impressed with this.

This right here is a complete departure from the books (at least as far as he’s written so far), but it’s something that the books have been working toward. In the books right now Tyrion is a slave right outside Mereen who later frees himself and escapes to hide in a mercenary war camp– all the while waiting to get to meet Dany.
Dany on the other hand is out in the wilderness with Drogon who swooped into the fighting pits to eat some easy prey and she jumped on his back to try to save him from the people that wanted to kill him. Now she’s abandoned in the wilderness unable to control her dragon (which I’m pretty sure Tyrion knows the secret to this–which I’m also pretty sure is warging to control them like the Starks do to their wolves) and on her period. (Yep totally on her period– which is worth mentioning because she was told that would never happen again after she sacrificed her baby to save Drogo).

OK so all that about the dragon and the fighting pits might happen next week and if it does I apologize for the spoilers, but I’m really not sure where the writers are headed right now. Dany meeting Tyrion and actually getting advice from someone who has run Westeros before though is a great development. He knows all the houses and how they will react to her and he knows all the ways that she could take over that part of the world. Up to now she’s been getting advice from old warriors who were never politicians or people that have never been to that part of the world. I can’t wait to see what Tyrion makes of the politics of Mereen and how long he comes to the same conclusion I did— the dragons need to be seen and feared. Without her dragons she has no power.

Needless to say though Tyrion and Dany working together is going to be something amazing to watch.

Oh and Jorah is sad and gets banished–rubs some on his greyscale and then returns to the fighting pits. I’m not sure what his play is here, but I’m curious as to why he did this.

Cersei

The Queen is locked away without food or water until she confesses. We see her get struck across the face with a wooden spoon when she refuses to do so. She finally gets to hear the charges against her (fornication, treason and incest– not far off the mark there) and told that none of her family is coming to save her. Not even Jaime (remember– as Tyrion left he told Jaime that Cersei was having sex with everyone she could and he can’t get that out of his mind. Of course in the show he’s in Dorne, but still not racing back to her.

She rounds out this episode by licking water off the nasty floor. So things are going great for her.

Arya

Arya is working on her lying skills and is telling Jaqen all about her life at the canals. She makes an adorable oyster saleswoman. She is being given her first job in this new role and is figuring out what she’s supposed to do. She’s been given the job of killing an insurance salesman who isn’t paying out to widows.

This right now is going along pretty evenly with the books. Except instead of Lana of the Canals she’s Cat of the Canals and is given the same task, but told it has to look like he just died. It cannot look like murder at all. I liked that she was Cat in the books because is spoke to her life with her mother as well as her new found ability to warg into animals besides her wolf. Also they aren’t mentioning that she’s having wolf dreams every night and that her connection with her wolf back in the Riverlands is growing stronger. I really wish they would touch on the whole warging thing more because I feel like that’s going to be important later on. . .but I’m not a writer for the show so. . . .

Sansa and Theon/Reek

Sansa confronts Theon about him telling on her. Theon is 100% Reek in this scene, but she manages to find out that Bran and Rickon really aren’t dead. Theon lets it slip, but runs away when he realizes what he’s admitted to. Hopefully this means that he’s finally working his way out of Ramsey’s control. Maybe. Hopefully.

In the books he’s cowed still by Ramsey, but with the arrival of the outsiders that have come for the wedding Theon is given a little more status since the guests expect to see Theon the prince there not Reek the servant. The storyline that I’m really sad they’ve left out is that Mance wasn’t really killed at the wall, but a wildling called Rattleshirt was and Mance has taken Rattleshirt’s place with the help of magic from Melisandre. She then changes his appearance again and is sent to Winterfell as a traveling minstrel and his “sisters” aka other wildling women meant to look like regular camp followers. They are sent to break “Arya” out and get Theon to help with this. I’m really sad they left all this out because it creates some warm feelings towards Melisandre– who hasn’t needed any up to now and it shows the ingenuity of the wildlings around the Boltons.

The Boltons

They are discussing Stannis and his plans and Ramsey offers to take 20 men out into the snow to take down Stannis. Lets just say they are both insane and horrible people and then just move on from this right now. I’m sure it will be gross and graphic later on.

The Wall

So we see Gilly and Sam being all awkward and post coital, but then Olly manages to come in and be Debbie Downer. He expresses his doubts about what Jon is doing and his hatred for the Wildlings. Olly is a new character and I really don’t know why there is such an emphasis on his character unless it’s just to remind you that the Wildlings aren’t all nice people and they’ve done horrible things.

Meanwhile Jon has landed at Hardhome with Tormund to try to negotiate with the Wildlings there to come back and help the Night’s Watch hold the Wall. Evidently Rattleshirt (aka Lord of Bones) is the leader of this group and he doesn’t want anything to do with the new arrivals (remember I mentioned him earlier and how he was killed by Melisandre). Welp he keeps insulting Tormund so Tormund takes his staff from him and beats him to death with it. All the Wildlings doubt Jon’s word, but eventually everyone but the Thenn’s agree to go with Jon and they very very slowly start getting on boats.

They load up a good number people and then suddenly the wights attacked the walls and for some reason instead of loading the boats faster they stood around and stared at the skeletal beings that were breaking down the walls. They move from staring at them to fighting them which does about as much good (once again why are they not sticking people into boats as fast as possible?).

Then all of a sudden the White Walkers themselves show up and Jon gets into a fight with one that looks like it’s not going to end well for Jon when a theory from the books is finally confirmed in that although all other blades have shattered against the White Walkers Jon’s holds up. It not only holds up it kills the Walker and turns the tide of the battle.

The reason this is true is because Jon’s sword is Valyrian steel and forged with magic from Ancient Valyria as well as dragon’s breath (dragon steel is another name for it– which sounds familiar like dragon glass you could say). Then as the people load the last of the ships that are able to escape Captain Barbossa  the Night’s King (aka the head White Walker) shows up and tells the boys to take a walk. The furious onslaught of the undead is more than the remainder can handle and the battle is soon lost. The Night’s King then reanimates all the dead and Jon stares on in horror from his (painfully slowly) retreating boat.

So this doesn’t happen at all in the books. He does send people to Hardhome to try to save them and bring them back to the Wall, but he doesn’t go himself. Also in the books the whole Valyrian steel theory hasn’t been tested yet, but Sam suspects that it will work. I’m pretty sure this was an interlude for everyone watching to allow them some action in a otherwise battle light season. I do question the wight and White Walker’s lack of fear of fire. In the books and the show they have been scared or at least repelled by fire, but aren’t phased at all by it this go round.

There are a lot of revelations this episode, fan theories proven right and fan desires made true. I have to say even though I don’t always support their departures from the books, it is making it an interesting watch.

Game of Thrones: Sons of the Harpy. When Cersei Screws Herself for a Change.

Jaime and Bronn

Once again we are in uncharted territory. In the books Jaime is off being an interesting character  a peacemaker for his King and here we see him making moony eyes at Tarth and explaining that he’s doing all this for his “niece” and to avoid a war. Book Jaime would have also done everything he could to avoid war, but he didn’t do this. Bronn was off killing off his wife’s family so that she would inherit and although I loved that about him he makes a good sidekick for Jaime’s adventures.

Their stealth mission is all for nothing though because they are not only found out, but they also kill a bunch of people while doing so. I wonder if this is meant to replace the scene where Myrcella’s Kingsguard was killed and she lost an ear. I could see that, but I also have a feeling that there will be a lot of blood spilled before Jaime leaves Dorne and probably just as awesomely as it is in this episode.

and who would that be?

Cersei

Cersei is busy thinking she’s super smart. She sends off daddy Tyrell after refusing his loan of gold. He’s to negotiate with The Iron Bank to get a better rate for the money they have loaned The Seven Kingdoms. The Iron Bank is kinda like borrowing money from a loan shark– that offered reasonable rates. It’s all cool as long as you’re paying it back, but if you decide not too then they break your legs. Or kill you.

She’s obviously trying to separate the Tyrells for her next move. Reinstating the Faith Militant. She sees this as a totally awesome idea. They can punish people who sin and she won’t be expected to save them. She then sets up the Tyrells for their fall. She’s not really thinking this through though. A church that is that upset about gays and fornicators probably isn’t going to be cool with a girl that cheated on her husband with her brother. Incest is totes not cool either.

Her cousin that is also had an affair with is now sporting a cool scar (ouch) and arrests Loras for his indiscretions. Yep this is going to go great Cersei.

The new King and Queen

Margaery is incensed at the actions of the church and gets Tommen to confront his mother to have Loras released. In response Cersei sends Tommen to confront the church (which if she knew what she had really created she would know that’s a horrible idea) and he isn’t allowed to talk to the High Sparrow. Tommen then learns of what happens when your wife asks for something and you don’t deliver.

Stannis

Stannis’ weirdo wife talks to Stannis about how much she dislikes Jon Snow and how gross she finds her daughter. I don’t like the Red Woman, but I am glad she stood up for Shireen.

Shireen goes to see her father later and he speaks to her of his childhood and is much more personable than he ever was in the books. He talks about how he’s proud of her and how she contracted greyscale. I have to say he moved up a few pegs in my book from this speech. He’s still an ass, but a little bit less of one.

Jon Snow

Jon is faced with having to ask Roose Bolton for help even though Roose is the one responsible for Robb and Catelyn’s deaths and so many of Jon’s other friends. He does the honorable thing of course and signs the letter.

Then in comes Melisandre to make things super uncomfortable. She asks Jon to march south to Winterfell with Stannis to help with the siege there. He states again that he’s of the Night’s Watch now and not meant to take part in the wars of the realm. Even though a creeper is asking I’m sure he’d love to go rip Roose Bolton’s throat out. She then gets uncomfortably close and undresses herself. Jon seems to be falling for it– and I for one didn’t like how far he went along with it before stopping it. The big take away from that interaction though is the statement that she made that he could cast shadows. So she sees that there is something powerful inside of Jon Snow. It is somewhat a confirmation for all of us R+L=J shippers and maybe proof that she has begun to see him in her fires now.

Because he’s totally Lyanna’s kid

Sansa

She’s walking around the crypts lighting the candles talking to Petyr about her family and he offers the second R+L=J clue of the evening talking about how Rhaegar chose Lyanna at the tournament at Harrenhall. Sansa then responded with the party line that Lyanna was kidnapped and raped, but Sansa is an idiot so what does she know.

Petyr does reveal that he has somewhat of a plan to bring down Roose Bolton and warns Sansa to not trust any of them and to use Ramsey. I wonder if Petyr really is so clueless as to what kind of boy Ramsey Snow Bolton is. Roose is cunning and dangerous, but Ramsey is batsh*t crazy. Roose skins his victims in private while Ramsey does even worse things behind closed doors.

First of all–gross and secondly– pretty sure you’re already married Sansa.

The Sand Snakes

If you haven’t picked up on it they are all warriors. So in the books there are tons more of these women and they are all of Oberyn’s bastard daughters. They do try to rise up, but the Prince of Dorne crushes them and finally explains his true plans for revenge. It looks like they are taking a bloodier and different course. But who knows Jaime’s story and the Sand Snake’s story is just starting.

Jorah and Tyrion

Jorah is still trying to find his way and Tyrion is now trying to make the best of this situation. I do love that Tyrion throws it in Jorah’s face that he’s taking Tyrion to the same place that he was trying to go himself. I do think Tyrion would be good for Dany, but even in the books I doubted her ever trusting him. I do wonder if he ends up helping her with her dragon problem and winning her trust that way though. That’s just my theory.

Dany and Co.

Dany is still trying to figure out this ruling thing– evidently it’s still hard, but Barristan distracts her with a story about Rhaegar that once again show that he’s not this rapist warmonger that we were led to believe, but that he might truly be a super duper nice guy. Say a guy that would run off with a girl from the North and have a baby with her.I mean– sounds like that’s a possibility.

They then take another turn from the books and have the Sons of the Harpy attack the Unsullied to which Barristan runs to help and help he does. But with very sad results. Yes he kills way more people than you’d expect and appears to save Grey Worm’s life. However that only results in the loss of his own and Grey Worm seems to be dying as well. I’m assuming they are doing this to shake up this story line and if it makes Dany less boring I’m all for it even though I’m super sad that Ser Barristan had to die to achieve this.

So just in case I didn’t do a good job explaining it– I found this handy dandy explanation on Tumblr of all the Rhaegar and Lyanna theory confirmations:

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Game of Thrones: First of His Name, Where I write a review incredibly late

awest

We start off the episode with Tommen’s coronation.  How cute is he?  There were a few smiles back and forth between Margaery and him that didn’t go unnoticed by Cersei.  Cersei approached Margaery acting as if she wants to become friends with her and Marge responded with this:

Seriously the look on Margaery’s face when she says all of this is how I feel when I’ve thought of an amazing put down and actually use it (as opposed to thinking of it hours after it was appropriate).

What the Watchlings don’t know:

In the books Cersei is seriously pissed off that Margaery is the new queen and she’s been pushed aside.  She still thinks of herself as a young, beautiful, desirable creature and doesn’t like to be reminded she is a widowed mother of three.  The sure fire way to make her mad is to bring up the fact that she’s not Queen anymore.  That makes this cutting remark that much more painful.  Also don’t feel sorry for Cersei.  Never feel sorry for Cersei.  I’ve admitted that I like Jamie even post pushing Bran out the window, but Cersei is a worthless c*$#.  Sorry, but she is and just gets worse.

Cut to Mereen and Dany’s council meeting.  Some are advising her to invade King’s Landing and others are not.  Just notice that Jorah seems to know a good bit about Westeros and that he’s acting weird.  This will be important later.

Jorah does deliver news that all the people she has freed are now slaves again and in worse situations then when they started.  She decides to stay in Mereen and rule.  And become a boring weak character for a while.

What the Watchlings don’t know:

Jorah was a spy for Westeros for a long time. (They talked about this in the early seasons, but you were probably still trying to figure out who everyone was). Anyway Barristan was on the small council meaning he knows this little factoid.  So yeah. . .stuff happens.

Switch to the Vale and we get to see Lysa Arryn be a super weirdo.  She evidently never learned that you shouldn’t act like a needy smothering girlfriend to keep a relationship healthy.  We also learned that she killed her husband, not the Lannisters, that she lost her virginity to Petyr a long time ago, that she’s an idiot, she’s super paranoid and jealous and that she likes loud sex.

What the Watchlings don’t know:

Lysa treats her son in a very creepy manner.  Yes, you’ve seen the breastfeeding and that he likes to throw things/people out the Moon Door, but you don’t know that he needs someone to sleep with every night and since his mother is not otherwise occupied this duty will fall to Sansa and it’ll be more creepy then you can imagine.  Lysa got pregnant by Petyr all those years ago and her dad gave her tea that would make her lose the baby.  Oh and gave her that tea without her knowing what was going on.  Then made her marry a man that, although he was nice, was old enough to be her grandfather.  She definitely got the short end of the stick.

Lastly, Petyr is even a bigger creeper towards Sansa than we’ve seen on screen.  He is always touching her, moving her hair and trying to be alone with her.  So, yay weird pedo sexual tension.

Back to King’s Landing Cersei and Tywin have a heart to heart where they discuss up coming marriages and how they are evidently broke.  Someone correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t remember this from the books.  Granted the kingdom is broke, but I don’t remember Casterly Rock being destitute.  Anyway this was mostly just a set up for later. Best laid plans and all that you know.

Also we learned The Iron Bank ain’t nothin’ to f^$# with.  They aren’t.  Way more hard core than the Wu Tang Klan.

Oh, and Cersei wants Tyrion to die, but that’s pretty obvious.

What the Watchlings don’t know:

No, you pretty much got this.

 

We have a few couples roaming around the Kingsroad and The Hound and Arya are the most badass.  Arya who has her list of people she plans to kill and The Hound who just desperately wants to protect someone.  He tried helping Sansa, but she was too stupid to realize it and Arya has accepted the help, but has so many trust issues she still thinks he has an ulterior motive.

The Hound hates all knights and what they represent, yet he’s been the most knightly in actions towards the Stark girls.  Well that is unless you remember him splitting Arya’s friend Mycah in half because of Joffery’s lies.  When trying to put together the type of character that would cut a small boy in half and a character that is gentle and protective of girls all I can think is that he’s trying to do better. (Let’s go into my complete made up thoughts for a minute).  Being always with the Lannisters and trying to avoid his insane brother he turned off his emotions and just did what was ordered.  However. then he saw how Ned Stark acted and how his family was treated.  Ned who truly was a knight and lord in every sense of the word.  I would like to think he’s trying to protect the girls in Ned’s place, he just doesn’t know how to not come across as an ass.

OK so that’s all just theory to me, but I also love that he pointed out that the first sword of Braavos wouldn’t have been killed by Meryn Trant.  So maybe I am right about my other theory.

They argue, Arya  tries to stab him with her sword and it doesn’t pierce his armor.

What the Watchlings don’t know:

Ahh there’s not a lot that you don’t know except what’s about to happen next. So just keep watching.  Their plot line definitely is progressing unlike other strong female characters I know.

Poor Pod and his attempts to take care of Brienne.  This scene I think was mainly to show the two bonding and to prove to Brienne that Pod really is trying to do the best he can.  I love these scenes, but wonder what the watchlings think of them.  Are they boring?  Funny?  Really they are great, but more to see the book character’s come to life than anything.

What the Watchlings Don’t Know:

Big things are coming up for this pair as well.  The only other thing that you don’t know is that both characters are broken, unloved people that got a taste of happiness only to get put on the road again.  Pod was mistreated all his life until he met Tyrion and Brienne was mocked and scorned her whole life until she met Catelyn and Jamie.

Cersei shows back up trying to make everyone feel sorry for her again.  Here’s the thing she seems to have forgotten though: Her dad ordered his sister and sister’s kids killed.  Then they were sliced in half, head bashed in, or raped.  Yeah that’s not something you’re going to get over with a slightly weepy talk about missing your daughter.  Plus it’s probably going to backfire on you. Just sayin’

What the Watchlings Don’t Know:

Cersei is insane.  Like certifiable. Plus she conveniently forgets about all the horrible things her family has done to others.  Never feel sorry for Cersei.

Finally we get to see what’s going on in Craster’s Keep.  Ferb Jojen still looks like he has a really bad case of the flu, plus that fire can’t be good for his hand.  Oh wait.

The traitor that Bolton sent to the Wall leads an attack on the Keep sneaking off to kidnap Bran.  Jon and his men make short work of the traitors with some graphic violence and it looks bad for Bran and the others.  Then when all looks lost Bran wargs into Hodor.  Yeah, why didn’t he do that before?

I don’t care who you are you have to feel sorry for Hodor when he wakes up and realizes that he’s a murderer. Such a gross thing to wake up to. Seriously he should have warged sooner and avoided some of the death and destruction.

Both the wolves are reunited with their masters and the Night’s Watch burn down Craster’s Keep and all the dead.  The wives/daughters/granddaughters of Craster go their own way.

What the Watchlings don’t Know

OK none of this crap is in the books.  Bran does warg into Hodor some, but just be able to walk again or to be able to see what’s going on in a place that he can’t reach.  Summer does get a little hurt at one point, but Summer and Ghost aren’t captured because they are f-ing direwolves that would rip their captor’s throats out.  Once again– just sayin’.

There was a lot of set up in this episode so just wait until everything comes to fruition.  Lots of drama/violence/surprises. And lets get real, probably lots of sex too.

Major Character Deaths: 0

Boob Count: 0