The Bear and the Maiden Fair contains one of my favorite scenes in quite a while: Tywin Lannister facing off with his grandson Joffrey, the King. The manner in which this scene is shot is simply stunning: it positions Tywin, not Joffrey, as the intimidating presence. The way Tywin marches into the throne room, the way the camera frames him from above as he ascends stairs and looks DOWN on his highness – it’s all so fantastic in every way. In addition, the scene is perfectly punctuated with Tywin’s sly smile as he walks away, knowing full well he is the only person who can put Joffrey in his place.
I get that the writers want us to feel sympathy for Theon after making him so despicable last season, but this week’s shenanigans were far too harsh and disturbing to watch. The fact that his captor sent him two prostitutes and brought him close to a climax is pretty despicable, not to mention the very real notion that Theon was probably castrated right after. Is this supposed to be fun to watch?
Of course Jaime has become the hero of the piece, so he predictably comes back for Brienne after beginning his journey back to King’s Landing. I’m unsure how I feel about the bear sequence that bookends the hour, but it’s undoubtedly thrilling and tense to see Brienne get so brutally attacked while Jaime rushes to her rescue. Nevertheless, something about the resolution to the storyline with Locke letting the duo easily walking off felt anticlimactic to me.
Finally, how wonderful is it to see a steely and powerful Dany boss people around? This week she sets her sights on the city of Yunkai in her mission to continue freeing slaves. Her meeting with Eraz, the ruler of the city, is outstanding. Surrounded by her dragons (who keep growing at an alarmingly fast rate), Dany makes her conditions clear and unleashes threats at every turn. Her character sure has grown a great deal, and it’s so engrossing to watch.
Bits & Beheadings
– Talisa is pregnant. Woope!
– Well I didn’t expect that: Orell is jealous of Jon Snow and tells Ygritte that she should be his.
– Hilarious moment with Sansa telling Margaery how worried she is about sleeping with Tyrion the “dwarf”.
– Dany’s new title is long and badass. Try saying that thirty times in a row!
– The best visual in the entire hour: Dany casually throwing raw meat during her conversation with Eraz as her dragons screech and fight over it. The CGI is just first-rate!
– Poor Shae, she really is getting the short end of the stick with Tyrion and his upcoming marriage to Sansa.
– Amazingly satisfying moment with Melisandre telling Gendry that Robert was his father. Uh oh!
– The Hound catching Arya – double uh-oh!
– So Bran wants to find the Raven instead of his brother. #Priorities
– Osha finally gets character development as she tells the sad story of her love being killed and turned into a wight.
Kings & Quips
Margaery: Pleasing us takes practice.
Sansa: How do you know all this? Did your mother teach you?
Margaery: (pausing with a smile) Yes, sweet girl. My mother taught me.
Tyrion: She’s a child.
Bronn: She’s a foot taller than you.
Tyrion: A tall child.
Bronn: You want to fuck that Stark girl. You just don’t want to admit it.
Tyrion: I don’t pay you to put evil notions in my head. The ones already there don’t need company.
Bronn: You pay me to kill people who bother you. Evil notions come free.
Joffrey: So if I wanted to attend a council meeting, I would now have to climb all the stairs in the Tower of the Hand?
Tywin: We could arrange to have you carried.
Daenerys: How many slaves are there in Yunkai?
Jorah: 200,000, if not more.
Daenerys: Then we have 200,000 reasons to take the city.
Eraz: You shall find no easy conquest here, khaleesi.
Daenerys: Good. My Unsullied need practice.
Daenerys: I have a gift for you as well. Your life.
Eraz: You swore me safe conduct.
Daenerys: I did, but my dragons made no promises. And you threatened their mother.
Shae: She’s a beautiful girl. You said so yourself.
Tyrion: That doesn’t mean that– this is duty, not desire.
Shae: Is that what you will tell yourself when you fuck her?
Tyrion: I don’t have a choice. My father–
Shae: Does not rule the world. We can still go across the Narrow Sea.
Tyrion: What would I do there? Juggle? I am a Lannister of Casterly Rock.
Shae: And I’m Shae the funny whore.
Tyrion: My feelings for you have not changed. I will marry Sansa Stark and do my duty by her.
Shae: While I empty her chamber pot and lick your cock when you’re bored?
Arya: He’s not my one true god.
Beric: No? Who’s yours?
Ygritte: Is that a palace?
Jon: It’s a windmill.
Ygritte: Or do you like girls who swoon, Jon Snow? Oh, a spider! Save me, Jon Snow. My dress is made of the purest silk from Tralalalaleeday. Jon: I’d like to see you in a silk dress.
Ygritte: Would you?
Jon: So I could tear it off you.
Ygritte: Well, you rip my pretty silk dress, I’ll blacken your eye.
Much better than last week’s hour, although the ending is a bit of a letdown.