Entries in recap (4)
Season 2, we hardly knew ye. Ten weeks have gone by—and in Sunday's finale, we saw: Sansa Stark cast aside for Margaery Tyrell, Arya Stark on the run and Robb Stark married. In the Throne Room of the Red Keep, the Lannisters not only paid their debts—Lord Tywin's horse demonstrated it could sh*t where it pleased. Tyrion Lannister and Theon Greyjoy were both stripped of their duties, and Brienne and Jaime continued to make for awkward road buddies. Let's not forget that Dany checked in (and out!) of the House of the Undying, aided by dragonfire. And in the North, Jon killed his hero, as the wildlings and the White Walkers amassed their forces.
Offers were made and rejected: For the second time in a matter of days, Sansa Stark was offered a chance to return to Winterfell; first by the Hound during the siege, and then by Littlefinger. Perhaps sensing the possibility of stranger danger, Sansa turned both overtures down. Maester Luwin suggested that Theon take a secret passage out of Winterfell and then up to the Wall, but the Prince of Pyke refused the chance to escape. Shae tempted Tyrion with the idea they run off to Pentos, with the city's unofficial tagline: Eat. Drink. F***. Live… but he declined. Arya even briefly toyed with the idea of joining Jaqen H'ghar in Braavos, but then thought better of it.
Imagine! Theon a Brother in the Night's Watch, Tyrion and Shae as tourists in Pentos, Arya picking up some new moves in Braavos. What say you, watchers at home? Were these paths worth taking?
Sunday's episode of 'Game of Thrones' might as well have been dedicated to the Father of the Faith of the Seven. The prevailing focus of the night was very much the show's paternal figures. Theon Greyjoy makes it back home to Pyke after nearly a decade away, but the only living son of Balon Greyjoy is rejected by his father for having gone soft (and humiliated by his sister for not realizing who she is when he puts the moves on her). But at least Theon has a dad: On the Kingsroad, Arya Stark’s only way to feel close to Ned is reminiscing with Gendry about the time he was interrogated by the Hand of the King. And far, far to the north, Jon Snow is still getting the cold shoulder from his stand-in father figure Lord Commander Mormont for mouthing off in front of Craster, who’s officially the worst dad in Westeros. Jon makes the bad situation even worse by trying to investigate what happens to Craster's sons, and gets clubbed on the head for his troubles.
Even those without children had their heartstrings tugged. Littlefinger tries to comfort Ros as she mourns for baby Barra – by reminding her she is an investment that can be recouped in any number of perverse ways. Over on Dragonstone, Stannis Baratheon falls for the oldest line in the book when his in-house religious advisor/ ginger priestess drops her robe and promises him a son. As if having forsaken his own faith isn't enough, Stannis has now completely surrendered himself to the Lord of Light.
Of the Seven, the Father represents justice. Here's hoping that's still around the corner for this motley group.
The first season of Game of Thrones ended with most of the characters facing dire circumstances, and Sunday night’s Season 2 premiere just cements Westeros’ reputation as a place where bad things happen to all people. Joffrey – a boss from hell whose mandatory birthday party features his employees fighting each other to the death – has only found new ways to abuse his power to the detriment of his entire family. Daenerys has traded in a curse-throwing blood witch for a pack of dragons that refuse to eat (this is momentarily convenient, however, as Dany leads her starving people across a sweltering wasteland). Even Jon Snow, who gave up the height of Northern luxury to freeze at Castle Black last year, has found a way to double down on discomfort by moving in with an incestuous wildling named Craster, who thinks Snow is “prettier than half my wives.”
It seems, in fact, that Tyrion might be the only person in all of Westeros who’s on an upswing. He at least makes his triumphant return to King’s Landing, which series creator D.B. Weiss discusses in HBO GO’s Interactive Viewing Experience. The dwarf was sent by his father with the job of preventing any more improvisational beheadings, but as David Sims points out on AVClub.com, Tyrion may want to leave the ending sequence of “The North Remembers” off his resume.
Over at Televisionary.com, Lace Jacobs observes that this episode is all about the nature of power and where it resides – whether in “The knowledge of a wise man? The sword of a warrior? The magnanimity of a king?” For now, at least, the answer is frighteningly simple: All over the freakin’ place.
David Benioff and D.B. Weiss go Inside the Episode: