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First of all, let me just say; if you are not watching Game of Thrones, we’ll never, ever, ever, be friends. YOU CAN’T SIT WITH US! Okay. Episode 4 was so damn fantastic I re-watched it almost immediately, and have watched it everyday, twice a day since it aired. I cannot get over how wonderful it was. Every scene, sequence, dialogue, action…Every single bit of it was awesome. Epically Awesome!! Argh!!
Now I’ve gotten my juvenile delinquency out the way, let’s get down to business.
Jaime “Kingslayer” Lannister is not having the best time of it, especially after the big chop. We meet him on a journey with his captors and for once he elicits our sympathies because even with one hand he tries to take on the men in a sword fight but his face is quickly in the mud. They jeer at him and trick him into drinking “horse piss” ew. And all this while I’m thinking; tetanus!! Later on, Brienne sees Jaime starting to give up the fight so she hits him with a dose of tough love before revealing that she knows he saved her from being raped but is surprised he would do such a thing. A touching moment, an intense scene between them. Jaime is one of the most compelling characters in GoT, his scenes are always so powerful and his lines double edged with meaning it makes us more curious to know more about him. I supposed I’ll have to read the books to find out more…
The scene between Lord Varys and Tyrion Lannister was my second favourite scene in this episode and I have new found respect for Lord Varys. A man who has literally seen all seven hells and journeyed back from them, in a manner of speaking. Tyrion wants revenge against sister dearest and who better to help him than the sneaky Lord with eyes and ears all over the capital. Lord Varys tells Tyrion the story of how he was castrated, a chilling encounter, and how he made his way from the depths of Myr to the Small Council Chamber at King’s Landing. And then he opens the box…this is very mad-eye moody moment as seen in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire but with more of an OMG. Tyrion Lannister has new found respect for Lord Varys; a new alliance perhaps? In a later scene, after being made privy to Little Finger’s travel plans, Lord Varys seeks the help of Lady Olenna to protect Sansa Stark. Lady Olenna is one feisty old woman, her lines even more so.
Then we meet the grumpy men of the Night Watch shovelling pig’s crap as they have been charged with keeping Craster’s pigs, I don’t blame them because theirs is a fate less ideal; they are fed poorly but expected to be thankful for it and Craster couldn’t care less if they all dropped dead. Sam is still a bit simple in this scene but he redeems himself when a fight breaks out between the Night Watchmen and Craster, who doesn’t take too kindly to being called a bastard; twice is enough to get him enraged but he meets his death the hands of Karl. Comotion and Chaos quickly follow as the Watchmen fight each other but Sam escapes the mayhem, taking Gilly and her baby with him.
Brandon is still plagued by the three-eyed crow in his dreams. This time he climbs up a tree and his mother appears to him. She reiterates her words from the very first episode when she tells him to promise her never to climb again. He is in search of something, is very close but before he can find it he wakes up and of course Jorjen is there watching him. This seems to be a long drawn out dream situation for Brandon without possibility of a conclusion. I’m at a loss as to what remembering the reason he fell will bring him considering everyone knows Jaime and Cersei were incestuous. Or perhaps there is more to this than meets the eye. Either way, I hope they get there soon.
Joffrey, the bloody oaf is still alive unfortunately, takes his bride to be Lady Margaery on a tour of the Great Sept of Baelor where they are to be married. He tells the tale of the slain Targaryens with a little too much glee, yes this dude is sick. Lady Margaery plays her ever doting simpering part so well its almost believable. She caters to Joffrey’s ego so expertly, and slowly she is wrapping him around her little finger. She talks him into going outside to greet the gathering crowds who already adore Lady Maegery, much to Cersei’s anger. Later on, in a meeting with her father,Lord Tywin, in her usual coldness Cersei gives a speech about how she is the more worthy child, of his trust. Lord Tywin gives her a chance to prove that worth and she informs him that the Tyrells are a problem because she is not all approving of Margaery’s influence over Joffrey. Lord Tywin on the other hand, sees no issue with it and promptly reminds her of the crucial role the Tyrells played in saving Kings Landing in the Battle of the Blackwater. Tywin digs the knife in deeper when he informs Cersei that his lack of trust is not because she is a woman, but because she is not as smart as she thinks she is. He blames her for Joffrey’s misbehaviour which has put the city in disarray.
The wheels are set in motion for the protection of Sansa Stark when Lady Margaery hints at a possible union between Sansa and her brother Loras which would mean Sansa’s place would be High Garden instead of the King’s Landing, away from the clutches of Cersei. The depth of Sansa’s sadness is heavily apparent in this scene as is her yearning for friendship. She gains the audience’s sympathy and we hope that Margaery is in her corner and Sansa is not just a pun in her schemes.
Theon Greyjoy is getting a dose of his own medicine. After being rescued by the cleaning boy, played by Iwan Rheon, they ride to Deepwood Motte where Yara is supposedly waiting for his return. The consequences of Theon’s action in Winterfell weigh down on him and he confesses to having Dagma kill two orphan boys and not the Stark boys. Upon entering the castle we realise its the same dungeon where Theon was held captive and tortured. And there the rest of his captors await him. The cleaning boy blames Theon for the death of the others and his suffering resumes, much to my delight. No question cleaning boy’s ulterior motives will be revealed in time, but for now, Theon’s pain is our joyful gain.
Arya, sweet brave Arya, is travelling with the Brotherhood without Banners and so far they have been nothing but good to her, considering she’s a Stark girl but to her credit she has always been able to handle herself in the most dire situations, so she fits right in with them. It also helps that she is a bit of a tomboy. In the cave, aka “home”, the other members of the Brotherhood gather and we meet one eyed Dondarion, who accuses his old acquaintance Dog aka Clegane, of being a murderer, something Dog strongly denies. Arya then calls him out on the murder of Mycah the butcher’s boy who Dog killed whilst in the employ of Joffrey. Dog is sentenced to a trial by combat with Dondarion as his opponent.
In the final and most amazing, scene we meet Daenerys in Astapor where she closes the trade for an army of unsullied with Kraznys; payment for which is her biggest dragon. After the trade is complete, in a series of dramatic events, Daenerys reveals to Kraznys that Valyrian is her mother tongue so she understood all he’d been saying. She calls on the army to kill the slave masters and orders her dragon to incinerate Kraznys. “Dracarys”. A battle breaks out and all the slavers are killed. Daenerys frees the soldiers but asks them to fight for her as freemen. A most powerful scene of spear tapping follows as the men pledge allegiance to her.
The Targaryen is on the move. Shit just go real.
This episode had everything and more of what we were waiting for, the new characters have been established and plays mapped out from key players. Battles were fought and alliances formed between the likely and unlikely. The overarching theme in this episode, which I suspect will go on to shape the rest of the season, was a game of wills; waiting for the perfect moment to pounce on an unsuspecting prey. Victory comes to those who wait patiently for it. Lord Varys waits a long time for the right moment to take his revenge against the sorcerer who castrates him. Lady Margaery is perfectly playing Joffrey until such a time will come when he will do her every bidding, the Night watchmen take out their pent up anger and frustrations on Craster and their leader ever so savagely, feelings bottled up over time, possibly from the days they took the oath of the Black and discovered the harsh realities. However, the most defining moment came right at the end with Daenerys. It feels like her journey has been leading up to this moment; she waits until her trade with Kraznys is complete before revealing her true identity and exacting her revenge on him. She frees the army and in turn gains their loyalty, just like she did as Khaleesi. This was a true test of wills and a revelation of just what can be gained with rational temperament.