I can’t stress enough how much I’ve enjoyed Arya’s journey since the start of the show. It’s been so captivating watching her adapt to the different horrifying situations life keeps throwing at her, and Harrenhall has been a particular standout. Who would have thought that pairing up Arya and Tywin Lannister would produce such marvelous results? Everything about the dynamic between Maisie Williams and Charles Dance is incredible, the two bouncing off each other like equals with their sharp tongues and cunning ploys. I love how Tywin figured out that Arya was lying about where she was from, only for her to lie yet again and prophetically state that “Anyone can be killed.” The casting Gods sure outdid themselves here!
Dany’s Qarth experience evolved quite a bit this week, with the man who gave her entry, Xaro, asking for her hand in marriage in exchange for an army. It’s a tempting enough offer, and it’s further muddled by the realization that Jorah might very much be in love with her. The city of Qarth has been well realized thus far: it’s magical and elegant, yet there’s a dark undercurrent that is just waiting to be explored. I’m intrigued.
In case you thought Melisandre’s shadow monster wasn’t going to get to work immediately, the creepy creature went on ahead and swiftly murdered Renly Baratheon. It’s an effective twist, particularly because it puts Brienne (who is framed for the murder) with Catelyn Stark; this is yet another genius pairing that I can’t wait to see more of. Did no one else get goosebumps when the badass lady knelt on one knee and swore to protect Lady Stark? Woohoo.
Bits & Beheadings
– The fact that Lancel meets Tyrion in his little box. Hilarious!
– Tywin asking Arya about Robb – Ouch!
– There’s something fishy about Stannis not bringing Melisandre to the attack on King’s Landing and giving Davos total control of his ships. He’s up to something isn’t he?
– It’s quite uncomfortable to see Theon being treated so miserably by his crew. I’m curious to see if his new plan (to provoke the Starks) gains him that respect or backfires.
– The mysterious man (Jaqen H’ghar) that Arya saved, returned this week, and offered the little Stark three deaths as a thank you. It’s an insane development to be sure, and satisfyingly culminates with him pushing the torturer off a ledge. Can Arya please pick Joffrey next?
-History lesson: Wildfire, a highly powerful explosive liquid, was the key to Targaryen power, and Cersei has now commissioned the alchemists to produce a WHOLE lot of it. Uh oh…
– The people of King’s Landing call Tyrion a “demon monkey”. That’s just hysterical and strangely appropriate.
– Amazingly adorable scene: Dany ordering one of her little dragons to cook some meat with a simple order: “Dracarys”. The CGI is on point here!
– How creepy is Pryat Pree, one of the Thirteen who offers Dany a visit to the House of the Undying. Sounds charming.
– Who is the mysterious masked woman who tells Jorah to protect Khaleesi?
– Why is Rickon angrily smashing nuts?
– As for the Night’s Watch, I’m too invested in Jon joining Halfhand in his mission to kill Mace Ryder. Nevertheless, the snowy backdrops were just striking.
– Jorah says that Dany would make a good ruler because she would be “loved”. He makes a good point!
– Loved Arya giving Gendry fighting tips. She did have the best teacher after all.
Kings & Quips
Littlefinger: Do you want to be a queen?
Margaery : No. I want to be THE queen.
Cersei: Littlefinger says we can outspend him three to one.
Tyrion: And I say father raised you to have too much respect for money.
Cersei: Aren’t you always so clever with your schemes and your plots?
Tyrion: Schemes and plots are the same thing.
Tyrion: Tell me, if the vile allegations against my brother and sister are true, do you think it will make Jaime more likely to kill you or less likely? When I tell him you’re fucking her, I mean. The smart money would be on more likely. But then perhaps his own unnatural urges will give him sympathy for yours.
Tyrion: (to Lancel) All right, all right. Enough. Even torturing you is boring.
Tyrion: Oh, Lancel, tell my friend Bronn to please kill you if anything should happen to me.
Sam: The fist of the First Men. Think of how old this place is … before the Targaryens defeated the Hendals, before the Andals took Westeros from the First Men.
Edd: Before I die, please, stop talking.
Tyrion: I remember reading an old sailor’s proverb … “piss on wildfire and your cock burns off.”
Alchemist: Oh, I have not conducted this experiment.
Daenerys: My brother used to say the only thing the Dothraki knew how to do was steal things better men have built.
Jorah: It’s not the only thing. They’re quite good at killing the better men.
Quaithe: But she is the Mother of Dragons. She needs true protectors now more than ever. They shall come day and night to see the wonder born into the world again. And when they see, they shall lust, for dragons are fire made flesh. And fire is power.
Gendry: Am I fighting someone?
Arya: You’re practicing for a fight. You should practice right.
Fine performances and some exciting twists make for a riveting hour of Game of Thrones.