Tonight’s episode was full of exciting scenes, emotional goodbyes and twists that most of us were not expecting. I’ve also noticed we are seeing more characters such as Sam, who is becoming increasingly more important each week (Point of View in Book #3). Others are beginning journeys that are nonetheless, dangerous; unless you live in Kings Landing. This is David Benioff’s (executive producer/writer) directorial debut.
During the opening credits, Riverrun is highlighted this week. It also begins this week’s storyline line as we see Catelyn and Robb at her father, Lord Hoster Tully’s funeral. Joining them are Edmure, Cat’s brother (Tobias Menzies) and her uncle, Ser Bryden aka, “The Blackfish” (Clive Russell). As they say good bye to Lord Tully, Edmure isn’t able to light the boat on fire with his arrow but his uncle, does it single-handedly proving his superior marksmanship and lack of patience towards his nephew. A fantastic scene to introduce the Tully family.
There is definitely some family tension as Robb and the Blackfish aren’t impressed with Edmure’s battle prowess or his lack of “real hostages”. I don’t think Lannister youngsters really count either. The most emotional part of Riverrun were those of Cat and Ser Bryden; recalling memories of her father and finding comfort from her uncle as she spirals into more despair over her own children. The “Blackfish is one to watch because he exudes “old school” loyalty.
At the Fist of the First Men, Mance, Jon and company stumble upon dead horses scattered in the snow. They figure that Night’s Watch is just a handful of men getting back home. Mance instructs Tormund to take Jon with him as they are going to storm the Wall and take Castle Black during the night. “I’m going to light a fire that the North has ever seen,” claims Mance. And somehow Jon just may be caught in the crossfire.
The tension rises at Craster’s Keep where the Night’s Watch has stopped for warm meal. Even Ghost shows up. We are reunited with Gilly who is gives birth as Sam enters the tent. And the baby is….I guess we’ll find out next week.
And just when Theon thought he was safe, his torturers find him again and chase him into a forest.Our mysterious “boy” rescues him again. I’m on the fence about this segment as I think Alfie Allen is amazing, portraying Theon, however; there’s needs to be a little more, I just can’t put my finger it. Or we just find out in a later episode.
We find Arya at the Inn, getting ready to travel as a “guest” of BWB. As they load the Hound in the prisoner van, Gendry and Arya say goodbye to Hot Pie who decides to stay. The wolf bread was a cute touch. I will miss Hot Pie.
At Dragonstone, a solemn Stannis says good bye to Melisandre who is off on her quest to seek more clarity. She reminds him that he is “the son of fire” and will sit on the Iron Throne one day but there will have to be sacrifices to the Lord of Light. Where art thou, Davos? In the dungeons, waiting.
Across the sea, we are taken to “Walk of Punishment” in Astapor where slaves are warned that if they don’t follow the rules, they may not like their ending. I enjoyed Barristan’s back story of Dany’s brother, Rhaegar. It was a nice homage to the books. Jorah reminds Dany that there is a “beast in every man when you put a sword in their hands” referring to (her buying) the Unsullied. She negotiates with Kraznys mo Nakloz by offering one of her dragons. They agree and she decides to take Messendei as well. Ms Stormborn is coming into her own especially telling Jorah not to disobey her in public again. Her last line , “Valur Morgulis; all men must die, but we are not men” illustrates that she indeed, has the power.
Back at the Red Keep, the Council sits with both Cersei and Tyrion joining Littlefinger, Varys and Maester Pycelle. The news of the day is that Lord Tully has died, Bolton is on the way to Harrenhall and Littlefinger is on the way to the Eeryie to woo Lady Arryn. I do detect that Twyin is up to something. Tyrion receives the news he will be new Master of Coin, something he is not too happy about since he likes to “spend” money. As he goes over the books, Tyrion sees that Mr. Baelish had been borrowing money from the Iron Bank of Bravos and Westeros is in debt. As a gift to Pod for saving his life, Tyrion leaves him at the brothel to get acquainted with ladies but reminds him to be “back in time for supper”. Upon his return, Pod gives Tyrion the gold back. It was refreshing to focus on Pod for second instead of all the political warfare in Kings Landing.
Finally, Jamie and Brienne are being taken by Bolton men to camp over nite. They sing, “The Bear and the Maiden Fair” as Jamie warns Brienne to be careful and give the men want they want. Hmm, is Jamie showing a softer side? The episode ends with Brienne getting beaten up by Locke’s men and Jamie saving her from them by telling Locke, she is worth “sapphires”. This changes the game plan only slightly as Jamie thinks he has outsmarted his captors. Brienne horrifyingly witnesses Locke cut off Jamie’s hand. “The Bear and Maiden Fair” sung by The Hold Steady plays in the background. For me, that was a heart pounding ending which reminded me of “Blackwater” in some ways.
Rating: 9.0/10 dragonfires.
“Lord Twatbeard” as Bronn refers to Littlefinger
Catelyn remembering her father saying to her, “Wait for me, little Cat”.
It was finally good to see the return of Varys, the spider this episode. I wonder where his character will fit in this season.
Any scene with Tyrion /Tywin or Tyrion/Bronn
Has anyone noticed that the color, blue seems to be flowing with the ladies this season?
Here is a preview of Episode 4: