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When worlds collide… Several big storylines crashed into each other on GAME OF THRONES last night with a glorious collision. We finally got more development with Sam at the Wall. Jorah is set for a reunion with Daenerys. And Margaery, held captive by the High Septon, awaits her trial – visited by an unlikely defender.
Viewers were treated to at least one unexpected twist involving one of the most integral characters. Any spoilers regarding the end of the episode will be clearly marked later on.
#WETHENORTH… Let’s begin at the Wall. Jon Snow’s loyal friend and fellow Nightwatcher, Sam, comforted the old wise Maester on his deathbed. The blind Alchemist’s final words were eerily effective and haunting, “I dreamed that I was old.”
With the Maester’s death Sam is the smartest man on campus.
Later on, Sam stands up to some horny Nightwatchmen who have backed Gilly into a corner. Our unlikely hero draws his sword on these would-be rapists.
Sam is the rare noble hero in GAME OF THRONES. He’s not the most skilled warrior but his bravery is the stuff of scrolls. He gets his ass kicked, but like Matt Murdock on DAREDEVIL he gets back up.
Sam doesn’t give up.
*** this review is intended for a MATURE audience ***
Sam is prepared to die to defend Gilly. With a show like this you never know who could bite the dust next. The result of that is every scene like this one with Sam is extra intense.
Luckily, Sam’s back-up steps into frame – a DIREWOLF!?! Finally.
It’s been a while since we’ve seen these amazing mythical beasts. Needless to say, the reprobates flee.
A little later, Gilly nurses her hero’s injuries. Then she rewards Sam, straddling on top of him, as they begin to make love for the first time. This gentle moment was emotional, especially when contrasted against most of the sex we see on GAME OF THRONES.
This balance is essential for the series. It provides hope in a rather bleak and savage universe.
Meanwhile, in Winterfell… Sansa accompanies her new husband, Ramsey Bolton, on a tour of the city. I loved how Sansa stealthily snatched a corkscrew off a barrel as they walked. It seems like she’s preparing an attack for escape.
Will she leave Winterfell? Where would she go? Or will she orchestrate the removal of all outlanders? Sansa’s (hypothetical) escape plan is an interesting turn of the (cork)screw.
Sansa trusted Theon to help her in the mission. Unfortunately, he told his Master. Ramsey has broken Theon, he is brainwashed with fear. Greyjoy doesn’t even realize he can escape with Sansa.
An unexpected twist saw Ramsey reveal that Jon Snow is Captain of the Nightwatch. Sansa had no idea.
I wonder how this will change her escape plan? Will she wait for him to arrive in Winterfell? Or seek him out before Stannis arrives with his army?
Meanwhile, in Dorne… Jamie and Bronn were captured last episode. They were attacked by the Sand Snakes, then imprisoned alongside them by the Dorne authorities.
This episode, Jamie met with his niece/daughter, Myrcella. She wants to stay and get married. She’s in love. Angered, she says, “You don’t know me.”
Jamie will have a hard time convincing her to leave. Will he tell her about her secret lineage? IE: He knows her? Will Jamie pull a Vader and tell her that he is her father?
Bronn is behind bars, across the cell imprisoning the Sand Snakes.
In an absolutely tantalizing sequence, one of the Snakes (TYENE) seduces Bronn. She plays with her prey. Tyene manipulates Bronn as she disrobes, enjoying the power.
Tyene also enjoys the sadistic pleasure of knowing the man is dying.
Like her father before her, the Viper, this Snake also poisons her blade for battle. Bronn is slowly dying from a wound inflicted during their earlier confrontation.
The Snake shakes her rattle, pressing her nude body against the bars of the prison. Tyene drips sensuality as she terrorizes Bronn with the tale of his eminent death.
He finally relents. See, the whole reason for this naked John Woo stand-off is that Bronn wouldn’t say Tyene is the most beautiful woman he’s ever seen.
What’s wrong with this guy? Even after he sees her disrobed he still doesn’t agree? That poison must really mess with your vision. GAME OF THRONES consistently showcases some of the most beautiful women on television.
Once Bronn tells Tyene what she wants to hear, she slips him the cure, subtly foreshadowing future events where someone like Jamie might get poisoned. Well, if so, now Bronn knows who to come to.
So, fanboys wanna know: Does nudity play into every cure transaction?
Briefly… Melisandre continues to corrupt Stannis Baratheon. She edges him to trust the visions from the flames. She pushes him even further. If he truly desires the Throne he must make a worthy sacrifice, a precious one, his young daughter.
Once again, it seems like manipulation, rather than war, is the most powerful method to gain power in GAME OF THRONES. Melisandre controls Stannis. Should he gain the Throne it will, in effect, be her Throne.
Briefly, in Mareen… Daenerys talks with her lover in bed. They talk of pit-fighting, marriage, and pre-emptive strikes – you know, the usual pillow talk.
During the first gladiatorial event, Daenerys is surprised and shocked for more than one reason. She’s disgusted by the violence, and the return of Jorah – who dispatches the whole arena without killing anyone.
The Queen of Dragons is still pissed off by Jorah’s earlier betrayal. He tells her he brought a gift. She is confused. Cue the Imp: Tyrion walks out and declares:
“I am the gift… Tyrion Lannister.”
Dun dunnnn dunnnn. How will Daenerys react next episode?
Let’s finish this off with King’s Landing and the multi-layered scheming for the Throne… First off, Grandma Tyrell blackmails Littlefinger to help free Margaery and Sir Loras from imprisonment by the High Septon. She knows of ‘Finger’s conspiracy to kill King Joffrey.
The Elder also threatens the High Sparrow with shutting down the trade of crops. She will starve the populace if the Mad Priest continues to pursue this course of justice. He’s isn’t shaken, the Septon threatens Tyrell right back – his numbers are larger than her’s.
Cersei continues her deception by bringing venison to Margaery’s cell, but she makes sure to tell her it’s leftovers. The Queen Mother acts like she’s defending her son’s wife, while in actuality she orchestrated these events with the Septon.
—INCOMING SPOILER TWIST—
By the end of the episode, the High Sparrow reveals that the wine-bringer who conspired with Cersei to kill her then husband and King, Robert Baratheon, told him everything to absolve his sins.
The Septon’s duality to accept Cersei’s conspiracy and then turn against her demonstrates the evil driving this man. He hides behind religion, while he plans his own rule of this land (?). It’s like Ancient Egypt where the Priests declared King through their supposed powers of divination.
Who will the Septon put in place of power? Or will he rule by manipulating the young Lannister King while the Queen Mother is imprisoned?
What will happen to Loras, Margaery, and Cersei? Are all these heads on the chopping block?
The season is winding down, with only a few episodes remaining. These storylines each carry their own weight which could drive their entire separate stand-alone series. There are so many new rulers vying for new lands, new crowns, and new thrones.
Next episode should be a pivotal one continuing these arcs towards this season’s completion.
What do you think?
Leave a comment below.
Was the Sand Snake nude scene one of the best in GAME OF THRONES?
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