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Season 3, Episode 6 – “The Climb”

After last week’s strong episode with so much character driven story, tonight’s story is more subdued. There were some surprising revelations with rich dialogue . “The Climb” was really about loyalty and control in the Game of Thrones. This was definitely a set up episode showing us the possibility of the danger that lurks ahead.

Still trying to make it back to the Wall, Sam and Gilly sit around a fire to keep them warm as the cold of North completely surrounds them. He proudly showed her the dragon glass knife which he had found at the Fist of the First Men. Will he know how to use it? Also, there seems to be a certain chemistry between the two; it’s very subtle, which could make Sam’s story more interesting.

The most gruesome scenes to watch were those of Theon’s continuous torture by “Boy”. This time he (Boy) played a game of “Russian Roulette” of questions. These are very intense scenes and both actors, Iwan Rheon and Alfie Allen are amazing. It’s a great visual that we don’t get in the books.

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As Bran and company head northwards, things aren’t going smoothly between Meera and Osha as they continue to bicker with one another. You could have almost sworn they were sisters. Bran finally gets them to make peace. Poor Jojen, his dreams are taking a  very heavy toll on him. He saw Jon Snow beyond the Wall but surrounded by enemies. These visions seem to foresee trouble ahead. I also wonder if Bran will meet up with Sam because it almost looked like they were in the same forest.

At Riverrun, Robb negotiates with the Freys by promising them the rights to Harrenhall and by ensuring that Edmure marry, Roslin(whom Robb was supposed to marry). He knows he needs this alliance more than ever, if he is going to win this war. This the price for Robb’s mistake. Edmure is reluctant at first but finally agrees after some convincing by Ser Breyden and Robb. The wedding will take place in a fortnight, so it is a quick marriage. It looks like Edmure might fit into the Frey household since they all look like a sullen, serious bunch with not much personality. The Blackfish seems to be the most interesting character by far (in this segment), let’s hope to see more of him.

In the Riverlands, Arya learns the art of shooting an arrow courtesy of Anguay. Out of nowhere, Melisandre appears which creates an unexpected turn of events. She has a conversation in High Valyrian with Thoros of Myr. It was an unique but welcomed addition because it gives us insight to these two characters and perhaps a little more about R’hilor. As she meets with Beric, Melisandre is shocked to find out how many times he has been resurrected ( by the Lord of Light). Her mission is complete by capturing Gendry. Could he be another one of her sacrifices? A shocked and outraged Arya confronts the Red Priestess. Mel replies, “Darkness surrounds her (Arya) with green, brown and blue eyes that will close forever”. It was truly eerie when Mel tells Arya, “they shall meet again”. Great foreshadowing for future episodes.

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And speaking of Harrenhall, Jaime and Brienne dine with Lord Bolton. He agrees to send Jaime back to Kings Landing but with one stipulation; that Tywin knows he wasn’t responsible for his maimed hand. Unfortunately for Brienne, she will stay behind as a captive for treason. Jaime did not seem too happy about it. Did anyone notice her dress? It’s hard to imagine Brienne not in armor. It’s highly suspicious that Bolton didn’t drink at dinner, he is definitely up to something.

Meanwhile back in Kings Landing, unexpected twists and turns take shape and the outcome is anyone’s guess. We see Tywin and Lady Olenna discussing a proposed marriage between Loras and Cersei. She breaks his quill just to show him, she’s got the upper hand. Has Tywin met his match in Lady Olenna? The back and forth banter between them was cleverly scripted. Another dynamic performance by Dianna Rigg and clearly a standout favorite.

In the garden, Loras is feeling completely awkward towards Sansa as they discuss their future nupitals. Even Cersei and Tyrion are entirely powerless this time because they are interwoven with the same fate. It forges a bond between them where Tyrion realizes that Cersei had nothing to do with Blackwater attack on him; instead it was Joffrey. This could potentially sets up Tyrion to seek retribution. In a heroic gesture, he also reveals the truth to an unsuspecting Sansa, who cries watching Littlefinger’s boat leave for the Eeryie. The highlight of this segment was interchange between Littlefinger and Varys. It sets these two up for either an epic fail or grandiose victory. LF’s powerful monologue was beautifully written. And during it, we discover that Ros was killed by the sadistic Joffrey. It reminds me of the line, ” All is fair in love and war” however; “when you play the Game of Thrones, you win or you die”.
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At last, the Wildings have reached the magnificence of the Wall. It’s enormous structure protects all of Westeros from the far reaches of the North. Tormund, Orell, Jon and Ygritte eagerly prepare for their climb. Ygritte tells Jon that she knows his secret: he is still a crow. She pledges her loyalty to him despite their differences and asks him to do the same. As they ascend the icy slopes, mishaps and mayhem and a cut rope from Orell plague the journey. Somehow, all of them make it alive and well. The cinematography of those scenes was as terrifying as they were climbing it. The ending was a spectacular view of Castle Black amidst the top of the Wall at sunset (even with Jon and Ygritte’s kiss). It was simply breath taking. Now what happens on the other side?

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The Climb was slower paced but rich in context episode that leaves us with much anticipation for next week.It builds towards an exciting climax, most likely episode 9. Again, Iceland is the perfect setting for Beyond the Wall because of its breath taking location.

8.3/10 dragonfires

Random Thoughts/Quotes:

Who is the rightful owner of Harrenhall? Is it Littlefinger, Bolton or Frey?

“Our God is the one true God: all men must serve” Thoros to Melisandre

” A prize flower in the dirt” Tywin to Lady Olenna discussing the marriage proposal

“The lords of my fist are about to clench your teeth” Blackfish to Edmure
“You, staring at my ass, Jon Snow” Ygritte to Jon as they climb the Wall

Here is a preview of Episode 7:

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Limaxis May 8, 2013, 12:46 pm

    A lot of exposition again. Having read the books there was little suspense for me in Rob’s machinations or in the climb up the wall, but the latter was well done.
    I think you err in stating that all made it to the top. There were more than four who started, and that icefall took out a few.
    I have little patience with scenes of torture, so the Theon thread was hard for me to watch. When I watch the replay On Demand I’ll fast forward through those, now that I know what’s the point of it.
    I enjoyed the foreshadowing with Sam and Gilly. That “chemistry” was hard to miss from their first encounter. That dragonglass knife is more than just an antique, and there’s that bit about the singer among the Black.
    It’s difficult, given all that’s moving on the board of the Game of Thrones, to imagine a future where there is much but darkness for Jojen to foresee.
    The interchange of Varys and Littlefinger does a good job of contrasting the two, and I look forward to seeing how that contrast plays out.
    I do not remember Mellisadre taking Gendry in the books, but going back and re-reading them I found I’d missed a lot so it could be canon for all I know.
    GRRM is sneaky. If you go back to read just your favorite POV chapters you miss stuff about them that shows up in chapters with unfamiliar names, or those of other POV characters who cross their paths.
    I think you misread the broken quill scene. The Queen of Thorns may hold a strong hand but one of her cards is impotent. Neither one has yet to show which is the stronger.
    I am not completely convinced of Cersei’s innocence in the attack on Tyrion on the Blackwater, although she has been wrongly accused of at least two other attempts.
    We are being set up with all the evidence of Joffrey’s sadistic nature, and I am looking forward to the season finale where we get our satisfying payback.

  • nightshadow May 9, 2013, 1:26 am

    Hey Limaxis,
    Do you think we’ll get the payback this season…I’m thinking next. Perhaps, we are being set up that the Queen of Thorns had the upper hand however, it could be a rouse for us, the audience, in thinking that the something is going to happen either now or later.
    I’m wondering if we’ll see Sansa/Tyrion wedding before the end of this season as well.
    From what I remember from the books, Melisandre didn’t visit the Riverlands. And I wonder if Gendry is being substituted for Edric Storm since his character hasn’t been cast or may not be cast thus, Davos rescues him. I would love to see more of Davos’s storyline developed in the next few episodes.
    I have to say the same about Bran, his arc needs more development instead of just the raven dreams because he has an important role to play. There are some missing pieces that would add to the flavour to the series.
    Since it’s only 1/2 of Book 3, anything is possible and many things can be changed to suit the on screen adaptation.
    In fact, I read an interview with Bryan Coogman about his episode and he even mentioned that GRRM asked the writers to change the Vargo Hoat character.
    I’m looking forward to next week when Dany and the Dragons have some screen time. It ought be exciting again.

    • Limaxis May 9, 2013, 2:48 am

      It’s always difficult to know which big event they’ll end a season with. I always assumed that it would be Joffrey’s wedding but there’s a lot to cover before then. The other wedding – the red one – is in the second to last episode (judging by the cast lists – Catelyn is listed in episode 9 but not in Episode 10). Sansa’s wedding to Tyrion comes before that so we will see it this season.
      So the order of the weddings is Sansa/Tyrion, the Red Wedding, and then Joffrey’s.
      Obviously they can’t cover all of A Storm of Swords this season, so where will they end it if not Joffrey’s wedding? There’s just too much to cover between the Red Wedding and Joffrey’s to fit it into one episode, it seems to me.
      Bran’s story looks to me to be a difficult one to adapt to the screen. His immobility makes it hard to include any action. BTW, reading that part of the book I find you were right, and Bran’s and Sam’s paths do cross. That’s going to be fun to watch. It’s reminiscent in tone to Dany’s experience in the House of the Undying Ones.
      My recollection of the Daenarys thread is that it gets pretty boring (mostly politics) right up until the last part of A Dance With Dragons.
      Of course they can play with chronology in the TV version, so really, all bets are off as to what we still have in store to see this season.

  • nightshadow May 9, 2013, 8:44 pm

    I think episode 9 is usually the climax. And # 10 is the conclusion, but then the writers always leave us with a cliffhanger too.
    I hope we witness Tyron and Sansa’ s wedding this season. It has huge potential for next season which will make Kings Landing exciting. I don’t want to give away too much. I do have to say I’m a little tired of Sansa crying so much.
    From the preview, it seems to me that Davos may return. Ohh, that means the slugs!! Unless they cut that out. Season 4 could be just as good as season 3 is turning out to be. I hope book 6 won’t be that far off or the series could surpass it.

    • Limaxis May 9, 2013, 9:02 pm

      As I said, the cast list for episode 9 shows Catelyn and Edmure Tully, and episode ten does not. So if they follow the chronology of the books (no guaranty of that) we will definitely see Tyrion’s wedding to Sansa this season.
      Episode 10 apparently revolves around Dany, as it’s named Mysa, which as you know is “mother” in Old Valyrian – what the freed Yunkai slaves call her.
      Interesting though, that the entry on IMDb has a picture of Charles Dance (Tywin) as the episode illustration. Hmmmmm.

  • nightshadow May 10, 2013, 2:22 am

    I think they’ll have Charles Dance around for Season 4!

    • Limaxis May 10, 2013, 2:48 am

      I agree, much as I dislike having to wait. Once more this reinforces my expectation that the Red Wedding will be the big climax for this season. So what will be the cliff hanger?

  • nightshadow May 11, 2013, 2:17 am

    The show seems to use the prologue and epilogue so it could be uncat. It could be Arya meeting the Hound. Or it could end with Sansa/Tyron wedding that would set up nicely for season 4.
    Oh I only found next week’s summary on wiki. It only does it week by week.

  • nightshadow May 11, 2013, 12:09 pm