After four long seasons, a dark, new Sansa has finally emerged. Still grieving over her family’s loss in the Godswood, Dontos Hollard reappeared with a necklace for her to wear to the Royal Wedding.
During the Wedding breakfast, Joffrey continued to make japes at her family. She made it through the ceremony at the Sept. At the wedding feast, Lady Olenna extended her condolences while admiring her necklace. Sansa came to Tyrion’s rescue as Joffrey made fun of him and a goblet. As pandemonium struck amidst Joffrey’s choking, Dontos emerges just in time; telling Sansa if she wants to live to come with him.
They escape through the city to a large ship in the harbor. As they board, Sansa discovers Petyr Baelish is waiting for her. Dontos is shot as Sansa watches in horror and throws her necklace overboard (getting rid of the evidence). Littlefinger assures his new passenger; her safety. During the trip, Sansa questions Baelish’s motives. He implies Joffrey’s murder was planned.
As they make it to the Vale, Peter informs Sansa that she is now Alayne, his niece. She is brought before Lysa and Robin, who know the truth. Lysa is so excited that Petyr is back, she reveals that she poisoned Jon Arryn for him. He quickly agrees to marry her on the spot.
Sansa/Alayne and Lysa have chat over tea. She questions her niece about enticing Petyr but Sansa rebuffs her. Lysa informs her that she’ll marry her Robin. Out in the courtyard, Sansa builds a snow castle of Winterfell. Robin comes along and smashes it infuriating Sansa. She slaps him. Petyr arrives just in time, reminiscing how she looks like Catelyn and plants a kiss on her. Meanwhile, Lysa sees this from balcony up above. Next, Sansa is threatened with the Moon Door by her jealous and vindictive aunt. Once again, Baelish comes to the rescue. He pushes Lysa through the moon door all the while; telling her he only loved one woman, her sister.
The Lords of Vale question Baelish over his wife’s suicide. Alayne is brought in front of them. She reveals her true identity as Sansa Stark while backing LF’s story. Later on, he visits in her quarters, asking why she lied for him. Sansa doesn’t look up but replies that she knows what he wants. As Robin and LF prepare to leave for a tour of the Vale, Sansa comes down the stairs in a new dark dress and dark hair to the delight of both suitors.
The adaptation worked for this particular segment. Lysa’s death was a superb ending. The writers ought to have kept the original dialogue of the book with “only Cat”; instead of “your sister”. The location of the Eeryie, especially that moon door is another awesome effect of CGI.
Finally, Sansa has gone from pawn to player; coming into her own. She went from being Tyrion’s wife to Alayne and back to Sansa. The hard lessons of Kings Landing taught her well. Still, she can’t trust anyone just yet.
Sansa’s arrival in Vale was anything but welcoming. Well, there was deranged Aunt Lysa to contend with. And it isn’t until Lysa’s death that her new persona emerges. Her family name and tears helped gain the sympathy of the Lords of Vale. She has many things to learn from Baelish; but she will have to stay cautious because his game always changes. She might have the upper hand this time. Her final scene this season as Dark Sansa completed her transformation. Sophie Turner may now have more viewers routing for her.
Littlefinger is brilliant manipulator. This is quite evident as we learn that getting lovesick Lysa to poison her husband, Jon Arryn, was the catalyst that started the war. And it’s really his love for Catelyn and pure revenge against the Starks and Tullys that motivated him to this point. In Sansa, he sees the chance to love again as well as more titles and money. And the guy is smart because he seems never to get caught. Even Joff’s poisoning was his alliance with the Tyrells (remember season 2). His monologue about “Chaos is a Ladder” rings true at this point. His motives are slowly becoming clearer each season. Aiden Gillen is making Littlefinger, a secondary player to watch.
An honorable mention goes to Katie Dickie as Lysa Arryn, who made the character fun to watch. She was off centered woman whose own jealousy and insecurities made poor choices; mainly with her history with Baelish, Catelyn and her father. Her death signaled a change of political discourse in the Vale.
Looking forward to Season 5:
What will LF do with Robin? How will he keep the Eeryie safe? Will the Lords of the Vale see right through him?
What intentions might LF have for Sansa?
Will Sansa be able to keep Baelish on his toes? What about Robin?
Will we meet more people of the Vale? Or will some storylines cross paths?