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Season 3, Episode 10, “Myhsa”

After last week’s shocking Red Wedding episode, the season finale focused on its aftermath. The episode was fast paced with many character motivated reveals and turn of events. It also set up the for next season (which has not been filmed yet). With the loss of some major players such as Robb and Catelyn; smaller story lines like Bran, Davos and Sam will come to forefront now with intriguing character and plot depth. This episode reminds us of important values in Westeros: family duty, honor, loyalty and faith.

The chaos of the RW continued outside the Twins as Stark banner men were slaughtered as Roose Bolton watched atop of the castle. As the Hound tries to protect a semi-conscious Arya and get her out of harm’s way, he grabs a Twins banner and heads for the exit.  As they approach it, both witness the chanting of “King of the North” where Grey Wind’s head attached to Robb’s body is tied to a horse led through the grounds. Arya has now experienced tragedy and death twice. Later on while traveling through the woods, they spot some Frey men discussing the decapitation.  Arya jumps off the horse and engages the men. In a quick instant, she drops the coin and kills one of the soldiers; her first kill, “Valur Morgulis”. The Hound comes to her aid and finishes off the rest.  He asks her where she got the “dagger” and her reply: him. Sandor instructs her that the next time,” you kill someone, tell me first”. These two characters are dynamic together. The Hound is a protective almost father like figure to Arya. And we are seeing her turn to the dark side of ugly.


Bran, Meera, Jojen and Hodor arrive at the Nightfort. Hodor enjoys hodoring.  Bran tells Jojen and Meera the tale of the “Rat Cook”;  about how a cook from the Night’s Watch killed a guest and served him as pie, a sin that the Gods can’t forgive. An explanation to guest rights which was  not apparent at the RW.  As they sleep, they are awakened by a strange noise and Summer’s growling.  A large man springs out of the well. He introduces himself as Night’s Watch, who just happens to be Sam Tarly. Gilly is right behind him.  Bran almost spills the beans about his identity but Jojen hushes him up. Sam looks at Summer and realizes that Bran is Jon’s brother.  “If Jon is your brother; I’m your brother too” to persuade Bran to stay but the young Stark’s mind is already set for the north. Sam shows them the passage and arms them with dragonglass. The only  Bran and company head towards their destination into the clear night. It was bittersweet moment for two character storylines be intertwined.  Will Sam inform Jon whether he saw Bran or not? Bran’s journey begins to north of the Wall.

Sam arrives at Castle Black and informs Maester Aemon of the events beyond the Wall. He (Maester) meets Gilly who names her son, “Sam” and invites her to be a guest of the Night’s Watch. Aemon orders Sam to fly ravens with messages to the remaining Kings of Westeros requesting assistance.


Jon stops for a drink and cleans his wounds before heading to Castle Black. He encounters an angry and bitter Ygritte, bow in hand. He pleads with her not to shoot him by saying he loves her but he had to do what he had to do. Her only reply is, “you know nothing Jon Snow” and shoots, wounding him in the shoulder. Snow climbs upon his horse as Ygritte fires another arrow into his leg. Jon escapes, leaving a crying Ygritte once again.  As he makes it back to the Wall, he almost succumbs to his wounds. Jon reunites with his NW brothers Sam and Pip.  This reunion is reminiscent of the first season where Jon and Sam meet at the Wall, thus illustrating that family doesn’t have to always be blood but it can be a brotherhood based on loyalty, honor and faith.

The next morning at the Twins, Roose Bolton and Walder Frey celebrate their glorious victory over the Starks. Edmure is in the dungeons and the Blackfish escaped.  Frey had been named Lord of Riverrun and Bolton, Warden of the North, all with a little help of Lannisters. Bolton even suggests a new wife for Frey. He questions his future son in law about what happened at Winterfell. It is revealed that his son “Ramsay” acquired the Ironborn to turn over Theon. Bolton and Frey are now the most hated characters of the season, rivaling that of Joffrey.

Theon, still being taunted by Ramsay (and a sausage), begs his captor to “kill him”; however, the Boltons have other plans for him. Ramsay begins to tease Theon, by saying he stinks and then comes up with the name, “Reek”. He starts tormenting Theon with, “what’s your name” to which he answers, “Theon Greyjoy” until he submits by force, “Reek”. Again, another adaptation of the books to screen where our last character (due to casting) of the season is finally disclosed rounding out this storyarc. It has been hard to watch at times,but it reminds us that “karma” can sting.


In the Iron Islands, we are reintroduced to Yara and Balon Greyjoy who receive a letter from Ramsay Snow requiring him to give up the North as well as a “gift”. Balon decides to disown his own son simply because he disobeyed his orders. Yara stands up to her father by saying that Theon is her brother, he is family. She sails on the fastest ship of the Ironborn fleet with fifty of the best marksmen to march on the Dreadfort. Yara embodies the power of women in Westeros; it’s a welcome addition to this episode. And let’s not forget that Stannis called Balon’s name in the leech sacrifice; foreshadowing next season.

In Kings Landing, Sansa and Tyrion walk through the gardens enjoying some small talk. Pod interrupts them requiring Tyrion to attend a meeting of the small council. Joffrey proudly shows the note from Lord Frey informing them that Robb and Catelyn Stark are dead.  He (Joffrey) requests that Robb Stark’s head be given to Sansa on his wedding day as a gift. Tyrion reminds his nephew that he can no longer torment her. Joffrey remarks “I am the King; I can torment anyone I’d like”. Tywin tries to diffuse the situation by reminding his grandson, “that no true King needs to declare himself King”. After which, Joffrey has a hissy fit and Tywin excuses the King  to bed because he is tired and needs something to help him sleep.

After the small counsel leaves, Tywin informs his son of  his part in Robb’s death. His plans also includes that Roose Bolton will be Warden of the North until his and Sansa’s child is born. Tyrion tells his father that the Northeners won’t forget. Lannister reminds his son that “the House that puts family first will always defeat the House that puts whim of wishes of its sons and daughters first”.   Toward the end of their chat, Tywin berates Tyrion for not getting Sansa pregnant as well as his own birth story and even though Tywin didn’t want him; he raised him to be a Lannister.  Tyrion hurries towards his quarters to tell Sansa of the grim news; yet, he’s too late as she is already crying.


Varys visits Shae. They discuss how she came to Westeros, her feelings for both Sansa and Tyrion. He advises her that, “ Tyrion  Lannister is one the few people  that can make this country a better place…you are complication…your presence endangers him”. With that being said, Varys gives Shae some diamonds to start a new life in Pentos. She refuses and throws them onto the ground. At night, as Pod and Tyrion decide to drink, Cersei comes to visit her brother. She  also tells him to make Sansa happy, by giving her a child. Tyrion asks her the same, if her children make her happy to which she replies that if she didn’t have them, she’d have jumped off the Red Keep.

The next morning, Jaime, Brienne and Qyburn arrive at Kings Landing. Jaime goes to see Cersei who gasps at his presence and his arm. With Jamie back, the Lannister family dynamics  certainly change. Definitely, more political intrigue with Varys and Shae added to the mix. Their roles might influence events further next season.


At Dragonstone, Davos visits Gendry in the dungeons and informs him that he wasn’t a highborn, rather he came from Flea Bottom as well. He reveals that he helped Stannis out of a sticky situation and ended up as a Lord. They have a good laugh about the Red Woman. With the help of Shireen, Davos keeps practicing his reading. He reads a letter from the Night’s Watch. As the bells  toll, Seaworth learns from his King that Robb Stark is dead; betrayed by his banner men. Both Mel and the King believe it’s the Lord of Light’s answer from their leech sacrifice.  Stannis orders that Gendry be sacrificed in order to keep the Red God happy. Davos pleads for Gendry’s life and advises his King that he an innocent among thousands of soldiers. He also warns against Red Magic. That night, Davos sneaks Gendry onto a boat away from Dragonstone.

Afterwards, Stannis discovers that Davos set the “sacrifice” free. The King sentences him to death. In one last effort as Hand, Davos tells Stannis, he’ll need his help as he shows him the letter from the Wall. Stannis gives the letter to Melisandre who burns it in the fire. She concurs with its contents and states, “the war of the 5 kings is over; the true war is in the north”.  Mel actually agrees with Davos for once! Liam Cunningham as Davos reminds us of honor, loyalty and faith during a time when everything is surrounded by death. Stephane Dillane’s performance as  Stannis is very pure and you can’t help but begin to like the guy.

Outside Yunkai, Daenery and company await to see how the slaves will receive. As they come to greet her, Missendi introduces them to their new leader. She tells them how the Khalessi freed them. Dany interrupts her and tells the crowd that “freedom is a choice”. They begin to call her, “Mysha” which means mother in Ghiscari. As Dany descends into the crowd, she let her dragons fly freely above them. The freed slaves then raise Dany on their shoulders to celebrate and the song “Mysha” plays during the end credits. Perhaps freedom is choice we should not take for granted.

The finale tied up many loose ends but gave us some new insightful intrigue to think about for Season 4.  The ending with Dany was mediocre, it could have ended with Dragonstone or Jon; just make it a little more thrilling as previous seasons have done. It’s a long wait until next year. Hopefully, Skyler will be back to write his amazing synopsis but I thank him for this opportunity. I’ll be back with some final reviews of the Season 3, characters, plots and possible predictions.

8.8/10 dragonfires

Random thoughts/quotes:

“An unhappy wife is a wine merchant’s best friend” Cersei to Tyrion

“My enemies made my kingdom bleed” Stannis to Davos

“Two boys from Flea Bottom in the castle of the King” Davos to Gendry

“What is one bastard boy against the Kingdom” Stannis to Melisandre/Davos

“Killed a few puppies lately?” Tyrion to Joffrey

“See, Ser Davos? You’ve been saved by that fire god you like to mock. You’re his army now.” Stannis to Davos

“My mother taught me not to throw stones at cripples. But my father told me to aim for their heads.” Ramsay to Theon

“We break bread with them but you have one name, not a family name” Varys to Shae.


Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Limaxis June 12, 2013, 3:54 am

    A few comments / clarifications.
    It will be interesting to see how they handle Arya’s despair now that she believes every member of her family (save Sansa, whom she never liked) is dead, and most of the possible refuges open to her are now closed.
    I was so looking forward to more development of the Sam/Bran encounter that I am frankly disappointed in their portrayal. In the book, this segment is all wrapped in magic and portents. The scene could have been dynamite but instead was just banal.
    In the book, before arriving at the Wall, Sam was saved from a pack of wights by a new character he names Coldhands, riding a huge elk. Coldhands sends Sam on a quest to find a person south of the wall and bring him back.
    That quest is what leads Sam to Bran, the obvious object of his quest, as Jojen realizes. The “gate” under the wall in the book was a weirwood door with a face in it.As Sam approaches it, the eyes open and it asks who is there. Sam replies with the “I am the watcher on the walls” oath, and in response, the face opens its mouth wide enough for them to pass.
    I liked that Maester Aemon assumed that Gilly’s child was Sam’s. What else, when she names him after Sam?
    The TV version again proves bloodier than the book by having Ygritte put three arrows into Jon instead of just one. In the book it’s Jon’s news that has Aemon sending all the ravens, not Sam’s.
    I am quite sure that I am not the only one who is withholding his/her (my wife concurs) despair over the loss of Theon’s manhood. This is likely another GRRM ploy. That “gift” box contained something else, and the scene where Ramsey is taunting Theon/Reek is the clue.
    I thought all three of Melisandre’s leeches are accounted for, but I may be thinking of the book.
    I was pleased that the dialogue at the Small Council was nearly verbatim from the book, and great dialogue it was. Jack Gleeson is doing a great job creating a character we love to hate, and Charles Dance pulled off what has to be one of the greatest “slow burns” in the history of cinema when Joffrey parrots back to Tywin what he probably heard King Robert say many times. The bit with Tyrion about his doing “one thing that was for the family and not for his personal satisfaction” was not canon, but it was well written and powerfully delivered.
    At last we see a bit of hope for the wall, as every other king has ignored it for the last few hundred years (it seems).
    As I said in my own topic, the whole thing with Dany was anticlimactic.
    Next season has the potential to be outstanding. I hope they don’t screw it up.
    BTW, congratulations to all involved on the win (shared) in the drama category of the Critics’ Choice Awards.

  • nightshadow June 12, 2013, 7:00 pm

    I have to agree with you on Charles Dance….it was a classic scene. He just owns it. We see how ruthless Tywin is or how much of a totalitarian he is.
    About the Melisandre’s leeches, Book Stannis does says Joffrey, Balon, Robb in that order. In the book, Cat’s POV, they hear that Balon is dead before Robb. In the series, it’s Robb dead first and most likely Balon next as a segway into more of the Iron Islands chapters which would make more sense if writers choose to go that route .
    I would love to see Arya’s dream sequence next year unless it has been cut out already. I think her story will get darker on screen but I would like to see her travel with the Hound a few more episodes, there is a humor to it at times just because Arya doesn’t put with much. I guess having older brothers helped.
    I think Coldhands will be more central to Bran’s story. Most likely, they haven’t cast it or CGI’d it either because the writers wanted to concentrate on the Red Wedding. Hopefully, they’ll bridge that one as well.
    Oh I was trying to be nice about the “gift”…LOL…I didn’t want to be that rude.
    I wonder two things…about the ending..is it a deliberate pattern? fire(dragons) -season 1, ice (white walkers)- season2 – fire (dragons)-season3. Or did the writers want something quieter and happier after episode 9.
    I’m going to have to look the Critics Choice Awards..thanks for that!!

  • Limaxis June 12, 2013, 7:32 pm

    Thanks for the leech clarification. Of course the writers will take those and stretch them out over several episodes.
    BTW, we haven’t addressed the real reason Melisandre wants Gendry’s death. She believes that will pull a Mulan on us (sorry!) and “Wake the Stone Dragon.”
    I think we all are enjoying the way Arya and Sandore Klegane play off of each other. They are such a pair! I like your insight about her having had older brothers. And this is another example to me of how Arya is like s sponge when it comes to knowledge. She is always learning, and practicing what she learns. She will definitely learn some important stuff from her time with The Dog. He’s taken up a sort of avuncular role with her, against his conscious inclination.
    I have almost despaired of the TV series taking up the matter of Arya’s waarg powers. In the book (I just re-read this) it is Arya waarged into Nymeria who drags her mother out of the river so that Dondarion and the Red Priest can find her. To leave that stuff out would be a huge disappointment to me.
    About the gift: Do you agree with me that this is another trick, like the faked deaths of Bran and Rikkon?
    Since I do not recall Coldhands showing up in the other books (yet – who knows what characters will show up in Winds of Winter?), I think we can accept that the writers have written that character out of the story line as unnecessary, like Edrik Storm.

  • nightshadow June 12, 2013, 8:29 pm

    I was just reading about itjust now in Davos pov chapter. Yes, the Stone Dragons but then Dany has the dragons! It does mention a great battle in the snow as well. So the flames didn’t lie according to Mel. Interestingly enough, I recall that Thoros was supposed to turn Robert to the R’hillor in a conversation in an earlier episode.
    It’s really apparent that the Stark children were waargs. Although we only see that Bran is using that power in the series. In the books, it’s different. I think only Robb and Sansa probably didn’t find out in time hence, why they were Wardens of the North.
    Gift…..I do recall in the Ironborn segment, Balon disowns Theon because he can not give him an heir. In recalling ADWD, I believe it couldhave been mentioned. Again, with adaptation, anything can be possible. There is no evidence so yes, it could be a trick; either way, book or tv, the truth will come out sooner or later.
    I’ve always questioned who Coldhands is because he does help Bran and Sam so there is speculation it could be Benjen, Ned’s brother.
    I agree about Edric, it was probaly easier for Gendry to take that role instead of hiring another actor. I would have liked if Davos told him to sail to Essos, though, he could have caught up with Arya at some point, unless he ends up somewhere in the Riverlands (like in the book). I’m It seems that way for the series that certain characters take on secondary roles at time. This was the case of Tormund Giantsbane taking on the Magnar’s role this season although that is character will be cast next season.

  • Limaxis June 13, 2013, 2:39 pm

    I don’t know if it’s written anywhere that there’s a limit of three for dragons. It seems to me that there are more skulls than that in the dungeons of King’s Landing. Anyway, I couldn’t resist the parallel with Mulan, where the exact same phrase is used.
    Yes, I too recall that Thoros mentioned he had tried to turn Robert toward R’hillor. He wasn’t having any though.
    I’ve vacillated back and forth on the spelling of “warg/waarg.” In re-reading I see that GRRM goes with the single “a” so I’ll stick with that.
    I agree that the only reason Sansa didn’t find her warg capability was that she “lost her wolf” as Bran said. That was more tragic than anyone in the books or TV realize. As Bran suspected, it diminished her in ways that are subtle but important. She might have been more of a wolf herself if Lady had lived.
    Rob was too tied down with responsibility to take on his warg power, I think. I don’t know what else would make him different from the other children. Do you suppose Rikkon will eventually show some warginess?
    I’ve gone on too much before with my speculation about Arya’s warg power, getting too close to spoiler stuff, so I’ll just leave it saying she has some interesting business in her destiny if my guesses are right.
    I’ll have to go back and see if there’s anything in the “Reek” narrative in the books that hints of Theon losing his ability to beget an heir.
    Speaking of which, I mentioned before that whoever (if anyone) ends up on the Iron Throne at the end of the saga, there will be no heir of Daenerys. So the Targaryen line ends unless . . . oh, well – that’s a spoiler so I’ll shut up.
    Coldhands as Benjen Stark? Hah! I had exactly the same thought! That would be so cool! You never know what powers will pop up in a Stark!
    With Gendry taking Edrik Storm’s place in the narrative, you have to wonder how that will reconcile with whatever place he has in the continuing narrative in the books. It’s no big deal to have someone else at the inn with Breinne and Biter, but I can’t imagine that GRRM just abandoned Gendry’s role at that point. Maybe you’re right and Gendry finds his way to that inn after escaping Dragonstone in the TV version. That’s quite a stretch though, as Davos told him to keep the coast on his left and head for King’s Landing. That would put him leagues away from the Riverlands.

  • nightshadow June 14, 2013, 12:16 am

    I wonder if Rickon will discover his powers…we may know from a Davos or Bran pov in the WOW. Most likely Davos at this point.
    Well, they are going to have to tie some loose ends up from the books at times because certain things may come back to haunt the writers if they aren’t carefully explained. Gendry would be one of those. And in AFfC, Jamie’s POV’s are very revealing and won’t make sense if certain parts are cut out. Same with Arya’s for that matter.
    I would like to see how they handle Sansa storyline for next season.

  • Limaxis June 14, 2013, 2:26 pm

    Rickon’s future is murky to me. Neither the TV writers nor GRRM have given him any depth up to this point, so I do not anticipate much for him until a couple of seasons down the road.
    There is so much meat in Jaime’s and Arya’s POVs that they will be spreading their threads out over at least two seasons, IMO
    As for Sansa, her story and Littlefinger’s are now wound close together. He is so devious, scheming, and unscrupulous that I wouldn’t put anything past him.
    In aSoS he tells her that in the game you are either a player or a piece. She observes that she is a piece, and he adds, “for now.”
    That says to me that, as we have all suspected, he has always seen her as a Catelyn surrogate. Sooner or later he is going to propose marriage, and with Bran and Rickon dead (or so he thinks), that would make him Lord of Winterfell, as well as the Lord Protector of the Eyrie and (by Royal decree) Lord of Harrenhall. His ambition has no limits, and it is likely to put Sansa in grave danger. (as if she were not already!)
    In the background, observing all the moves, and manipulating the pieces subtly and sometimes not so subtly, is Varys. I do not see him allowing Lord Baylish to succeed.

  • nightshadow June 14, 2013, 9:38 pm

    Now there is an interesting combination…Varys vs Littlefinger. Secondary players but with much ambition in this Game. My bets are on Varys. Littlefinger needs to worry about how the Lannisters will react if he becomes Lord of Winterfell. And there is a possibility that he may come across Lady Stoneheart at some point if she is near. LF isn’t popular with Lords of the Eryie either so….he may think he has it right now or Sansa could pull one over him and get everyone on her side. It should make for interesting reading. Varys, on the other hand, is a force to be reckoned with as he has more allies than one suspects. He could come out on top if he has his way. He needs to team with Dorne, that for him would be ultimately successful.

  • Limaxis August 29, 2013, 4:55 pm

    If the narrative so far has portrayed him accurately (when all you have to go on is characters’ POVs you are always at the mercy of their misconceptions), Varys is a unique character. While like anyone he is motivated by self-preservation, his first secondary motivation would appear to be to bring social stability to “the realm.”
    Toward that end, he is in a position where few view him as a threat, partly because he has (as he says to Shay at one point) only one name. That allows him to operate below the radar of the powerful who have a family name.
    The most delicious temptation reading the books is to imagine one of the sympathetic POV characters succeeding. But what does that mean? In GRRM’s world, merely surviving may be a victory, although Theon Greyjoy might find that a bit cruel.
    Somewhere down the line, if GRRM follows the typical fantasy fiction pattern, someone we are rooting for will become King of Westros, Lord of the Andals and the First Men – or whatever they call it then.
    Varys thinks he knows who this will be, but there are so many conflicting forces and competing interests that this is by no means a done deal.
    As I have posted before, I have my own scenario. Too many spoilers involved if I said anything further.

  • nightshadow August 29, 2013, 5:21 pm

    Yes, and they are interesting pair in the books and in the show for characters that aren’t POV’s. My money is Varys.