This year, GoT has still yet to really get the plots moving. It’s still in setup phase, much like an overlong fantasy novel where nothing of much import happens for the couple hundred pages or so. Sound familiar? Anyway, while there is some nudity in this ep, there no actual sex.
We do get to meet another four new characters, if briefly, and that includes the pragmatic Margaery Tyrell (Natalie Dormer from The Fades and The Tudor’s) – the new wife of Renly Barthereon, theon’s uncle Aeon Damphair (Jonathan Ryan also from The Tudors) – who re-baptizes him into the cult of
Dagon The Drowned God, and the cruel Amory Lorch (Finton McKeown) – who leads the brutal slaughter of Night Watchman Yorel and a number of his recruits. And we get to meet the amazingly tall Brienne (Gwendoline Christie), who we see out fighting the bitchy Knight of Flowers to earn her place in Renly’s kings guard. Yeah, lots of meeting, not much of doing, really.
Otherwise, Renly acts like a poofta, earning Catelyn’s scorn, Varys joins team crafty Tyrion and Cersei continues her evolution into the most powerful mean girl in Westros. Oh, yes, and Theon makes a choice of what he’s going to be, a Greyjoy or a Stark. Oh yes, and Samwell makes an endearing offering to the pregnant daughter of Craster he’s gotten so fond.
Renly is presented as perhaps the gayest king since Graham Chapman’s King Arthur. Ironically, he’d married Anne Boleyn, who, as hot as as willing (“whatever it takes”) she is, is going to have a hard time getting a pregnancy out of that uninterested chest shaver. It’s probably not great having Catelyn Stark around to continue to dress him down.
Quick witted Arya Stark is going to have to find herself a new mentor, as Yorel heroically takes on Amory Lorch and his goons, only to be killed in a rather humiliating way. At least that will save us from more rather pointless monologs about the price of vengeance. Sadly to we’ll have no other call to arms like: “There’s men out there who want to fuck your corpses”. That was quite a tease, as we are not presented later with any corpse fucking of any sort. On the other hand, yorel did take several of the men-at-arms with him on the way down. And on the plus side, she does save cool Jaqen H’ghar from being burned alive. Hopefully we’ll get to see his cool and dangerous side sometime soon.
Tyrion puts away another of his sister’s allys, earning the admiration of varying degrees of Varys and Littlefinger. He continues to be the coolest of the narrative. oh, and he gets his mistress Shae set up as the world’s worst handmaiden for miserable Sansa (some pretty dreadful acting in that scene.)
Cersei continues on the downward spiral that I’m sure it what has earned her loathing by fans of the book, whether is by being needlessly cruel to Sansa at dinner or throwing a tantrum then threatening Tyrion when she learns he’s going to marry her daughter off to the Martells. Good times.
Theon continues to whine about his situation, and continues to try to get his dad to work for Rob. No go. What does he do then? Gets himself re-baptized into his abusive family’s cult and betray his sort-of-brother. Hey, at least Yara’s getting the castle she’s always wanted. And she seems awfully amused to give Theon his new ship, the ‘Seabitch’. And dad, well, he just hate’s being reminded he was every defeated and forced to give away his only son. Awww.
Brienne get to beat down the Knight of Flowers and proclaim herself no lady. Oh, and she also gets to tower over Catelyn. Seriously, the shots make Catelyn appear to be a hobbit in comparison.
Oh, and crippled lord Bran is told with finality that his dreams are just dreams. Oh yes, there is no magic anymore, there are no dragons, no giants, and probably then, no starks or grumpkins either. And this week, no Danearys nor any Stannis. At least one of those were missed.
Yeah, not really much magic after all this week either.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 (yeah, things are still a bit unfocused and slow)