Guys, if I told you that a dying laptop doesn’t help me write those, would you believe me?
In any case, this episode was pretty sweet. It’s almost like episode 3 never happened and I cannot begin to tell you how happy I am to see how many meaningful moments and revelations we got this week. Let’s dive right into it.
Do you think I’m easily shocked? – Cersei
Tommen is now the king! The high septon crowns him and announces King Tommen, First Of His Name, King Of The Andals and the First Men, Lord of the Seven Kingdoms, in a deep, vibrant Shakespearian voice. The crowd, including Cersei and Tywin, repeats his words religiously and applauds the new king. Is it me or is the clapping a little… unenthusiastic? We do hear people cheering, but I can’t help but feeling that it stays very polite. I wouldn’t blame the Westerosi for not being thrilled, though, with kings dropping dead at their feet every Tuesday.
At the following banquet, Margaery observes Tommen as nobles and wise men and Pycelle line up to present their respects to him. The king notices her and they exchange a smile, which Cersei notices. Cersei joins Margaery where she stands, apart from the crowd, to have a surprisingly heartfelt discussion. Cersei opens to Margaery about Joffrey’s nature, revealing that her son’s actions moved her more deeply than she wants to admit. Cersei quickly comes to the reql subject of the discussion: Does Margaery still want to be queen? Margaery feigns being too troubled by the recent events for having given any thought to it, to which my first reaction was « aaaaw, you’re so full of shit. » The two women plan on talking to their respective fathers and Margaery jokes about Cersei’s future multiple bonds to her. I wonder if she actually noticed Cersei’s face saying « Bitch I ain’t marrying no one. »
I will do what queens do: I will rule. – Daenaerys
Meereen, where Ser Jorah informs Dany about Joffrey’s passing. Daario informs her that he took the Meereenese fleet for her. Dany feigns to scold him about it but the conversation quickly gets back on track. Is Dany ready to sail to Westeros with her army and conquer the kingdom that is hers by birth right? The situation is not simple: Dany’s army is powerful but even with the power of the Unsullied and the Second Sons, she can’t hope to conquer a whole kingdom. Ser Barristan assures that the Houses will join her but Ser Jorah doubts. For the cynical bear that he is, the Houses will side with the people who will win, whoever they are, and I can’t say I disagree on that. On this side of the narrow sea, though, other problems have arisen. Yunkai and Astapor’s newly established freedom is already at an end. In a private conversation with Ser Jorah, Dany decides that she needs to learn how to rule before trying to take her rightful place on the throne of the Seven Kingdoms.
Know your strengths, use them wisely, and one man can be worth ten thousand. – Littlefinger
Littlefinger reminds Sansa why the Eyrie is the safest refuge (and possily prison) in Westeros, all the while leading her up the narrow passage to the Bloody Gate under the vigilant gaze of dozens of archers. At the Bloody Gate, Baelish introduces a hooded Sansa as his niece, Alayne. Once inside the castle, however, Lysa immediately welcomes Sansa, who gets her first warm hug in months while Robyn… Oh my God, that kid has so many issues I don’t even know where to start. That kid grosses me out almost as much as Joffrey did, probably because like Joffrey, he is destined to be some kind of important personality in Westeros and that seems like a terrible idea. The boy not only has mommy issues, he also has no wits, no empathy, and no awareness of anything. It’s terrifying.
Robyn gets a gift from Baelish, which he promptly throws out the Moon Door to show Sansa how he wanted to make Tyrion fly. Also, he rubs the Stark’s demise in Sansa’s face. Asie from that, the scene has two purposes: establishing Sansa’s double identity in the Eyrie and, once Sansa and Robyn are gone, Lysa’s real relationship to Baelish. If it is still unclear as to Littlefinger’s feelings towards Lysa, it is very, very clear that Lysa worships Baelish and is merely a tool in his hands. A tool that he used profusely to arise chaos throughout the real. Be honest though, internet: after learning how Baelish planned Joffrey’s assassination, how surprised were you really to learn that he was also behind Jon Arryn’s death? Although, to be fair, there were more clues in the book.
Lysa wants to marry Baelish on the moment, but Baelish begs for at least a bath and a night’s rest. It is without counting on Lysa opening the door on the septon. This reminds our favourite trickster that Lysa is not only submitted to him. She is also completely insane, therefore unpredictable.
The scene ends on Sansa listening to her aunt expressing her… sexual pleasure. That or Baelish is furiously waxing her lady parts.
What does Tyrion deserve for lighting our future on fire? – Cersei
Cersei and Tywin discuss the marriage between Tommen and Margaery. With this discussion, however, also comes the subject of Cersei’s own wedding to Loras. Seeing his daughter almost graceful resignation, Tywin admits that he knows that Cersei doesn’t like Loras. To be honest, if I had to get married, I, too, would prefer getting married to someone who would actually sleep with me. This is a recurring thing in Game Of Thrones by the way. At the time, gay people couldn’t exactly afford to show off their sexuality. Tywin goes on explaining to Cersei how important her wedding to Loras Tyrell is. Of course, Cersei knows that the Lannisters need to reinforce their alliance with the Tyrells. What she does not know until that point, however, is that the Crown is ruined and owe a « tremendous amount » of money to the Iron Bank. The Iron Bank, the least known but most powerful institution on both sides of the Narrow Sea. Cersei understands that this is all about the Lannisters preserving themselves and brings the subject back on her brothers, by which she really means Tyrion. Tywin refuses to discuss the trial with her. Cersei, once again, understands, but does not leave without reminding his father that for the Lannisters, Tyrion’s crimes are way more serious than Jaime’s refusal of the Lannister heritage.
Only one name left. – Arya
Arya’s ritual saying of the names disturbs The Hound’s rest, leading to a little discussion about who Arya wants to kill. The scene is a short but efficient showing of the complex relationship between the two. They have a lot in common, including their hatred for The Mountain and a certain appetite for freedom and vengeance. However, when Arya pronounces the last name of her list « The Hound », we are reminded that the tougher and most dangerous of the two might well be the eleven-year-old girl.
You’ll be the lady of the Vale. – Lysa
Sansa eats some lemoncakes while Lysa tells her about how Catelyn also had a sweet tooth and almost became fat, but was saved from it by the power of patriarchy and a really strict septa. Sansa can hardly believe the story, since her mother would never let her have sweets before she finished her meal, to which Lysa replies that marriage changes people. Sansa stops eating but Lysa encourages her and watches her savour the cakes. She then take her niece’s hands and asks her how the cakes are with all the love and warmth she can gather in her motherly heart. Sansa is in heaven, and even more when Lysa reveals to her that since lemons don’t grow in the Vale, Baelish had three crates of those delicious pastries brought from King’s Landing for Sansa’s pleasure. Sansa points out how nice Baelish is. Lysa thinks so too. She thinks that Peter Baelish really cares about Sansa. And suddenly, as her hands clench on Sansa’s and her warm expression vanishes to leave only suspicion on her face, she asks why. Sansa tries to get out of it by mentioned Littlefinger’s affection for the Tullys, but Lysa already knows the truth. A truth that she does not understand, as Catelyn not only did not love Littlefinger, but used to love Brandon Stark, the man who almost killed him. Why does Baelish want to protect the young, pretty Sansa, then? Is she pregnant? Lysa presses Sansa until Sansa bursts out in tears and assures Lysa that Peter Baelish hates her by putting The Hound’s words in his mouth. Lysa then hugs her, reassures her and promises that she will be fine, as she is now to marry Robyn. If only she could see Sansa’s face when she realizes that she probably exchanged one prison for another.
They’d say that I wasn’t a very good squire. – Pod
To Brienne’s exasperation, Pod has trouble keeping up with her: the poor lad doesn’t do very well on a horse. Sure, he learnt how to ride when he was young, but it’s not like he had many occasions to ride when he was serving Tyrion. Brienne keeps trying to rush him off, ut to our greatest pleasure, Pod is a persistant lad. He was a pleasant character in the books but the face they gave him made him even more likeable. Is there already a Pod fan club? Because if not, it has to become a thing.
The greatest swordsman who ever lived didn’t have a sword? – The Hound
The Hound wakes up alone. The idea that he may have lost his prized hostage makes him nervous and he searches for Arya. We find her before him and watch her practicing with her eloved Needle near the river. It’s a both a nice and quite impressive little moment: remind me that I shouldn’t try to annoy Maisie Williams. She knows how to use swords. The Hound joins her and, well, makes fun of her for her water dancing. They argue about Syrio Forel, or rather The Hound makes fun of Syrio Forel’s swording style and death to Meryn Trant, until Arya gets pissed off enough to try to stick Needle into him. The writers will apparently not let one episode pass withtout reminding us that one of the big themes of this season is that fighting pretty does not do you any good if you end up dead. Of course, Needle doesn’t go past The Hound’s mail, The Hound slaps her so hard she falls on the ground (to be fair, he probably didn’t hit that hard because Arya is tiny) and leaves her to think about killing him in his sleep.
What good is power if you cannot protect the ones you love? – Cersei
Oberyn I Want To Sex You Up Martell is writing a poem to one of his daughters. Ladies, he’s hot, he can pull off ocre, he’s a poet, and he’s not monogamous. But I digress. Cersei interrupts him an takes him for a walk in the gardens. She asks him who is the poem for and it turns out he’s writing it for one of his eight daughters, whom he named after his late sister, Elia. He claims that the little lady is difficult and that her name always fills her with sadness and anger. Cersei thinks that may be why she’s difficult and I think she has a point. If my father was sad and angry every time he pronounced my name, I’d be difficult too. Cersei once again opens up (Gee, it’s almost like they’re trying to make the audience empathize with her or something) about the cruel irony of being powerful and having to watch the ones you love die. Once again, we discover two characters sharing the same love for vengeance, but for once this is not the real point of the scene. As they come near the shore, talking about Myrcella (and Oberyn reminds Cersei, once again, that the Dornish do not hurt children), Cersei shows Oberyn a ship, that she had built in honour of her daughter, and asks him to bring it to her, as well as her love.
I killed a man. – Pod
So Pod sucks at life in the wild, which Brienne discovers when she comes back from gathering fire wood and finds him trying to not set the whole forest on fire. Brienne sits down and tries to remove her armor while figuring out what she is going to do with the boy, while Pod tries to make himself useful and fails adorably. Brienne asks him what he did for Lord Tyrion and if he has ever done anything related to combat. Pod then reveals to her that he killed a man, the Kingsguard that was trying to kill his master. Brienne understands then that Pod and her have something in common: loyalty. Having finally joined the Pod Club (I told you this was going to be a thing), she lets him remove her armor.
I saw you die tonight. I saw the snow fall and bury your bones. – Jojen
We find Locke spying on the mutineers at Craster’s Keep and discovers where Bran and his companions are being held captive. Meanwhile, Myra tries to convince Jojen that it would be a good idea to stay alive. Jojen doesn’t care though. All he has in mind is to tell his latest vision to Bran to lift his spirit… And also remind him once again that he is important. Yes, Jojen, we got you the first 500 times. Still like it when you get all spooky and prophety though. Especially when we get to see the what he sees and what he sees is his own hand on fire.
Locke goes back to Jon Snow and the brothers of the Night’s Watch, who are all petty much in love with him, which drives us mad because HOW CAN THEY NOT SMELL THE BOLTON ON HIM? Anyway. He quickly reports on the mutineers and convinces every one to stay away from the shack where the mutineers guard Bran and the others, telling them that there are hounds in there that could alert the mutinees of their presence. ARGH. FUCK YOU LOCKE. FUCK YOU.
The mutineer leader decides that it is time for him to rape and torture Myra (because, you know, that’s something missing in his life). Bran commands them to stop in vain and the leader, who has a name that I once again don’t care about because he’s probably dead anyway, gets to be creepy and rapey until Jojen intervenes. He tells the mutineer leader about his powers, which leads the man to taunt him with what he’s going to do to Myra. Jojen doesn’t flinch and calmly tells him that he is a dead man. See, this is why I would argue that Jojen is pretty damn important. When does Bran get to creep creeps out?
Jojen delays the leader’s assault on his sister just enough that the brothers of The Night’s Watch raid on Craster’s Keep begin. The leader then has to rush outside to fight with his men. Finally! Some action. Swords clash and slash and the mutineers fight for their lives. Jon Snow swings his sword around and Locke sneaks up in the shack where Bran and his companions still are. Bran is at first happy to see one of his brother’s brothers, but he quickly understands that something’s wrong. He refuses to give his identity to Locke, but a quick slash at his dead legs is enough to reveal who Bran really is. Locke unties Bran and advises him to shut up if he wants his friends to live. As Locke lifts Bran and throws him on his shoulder, Bran and Jojen exchange a look. Bran goes limp, his eyes turn white and suddenly, his spirit slips inside Hodor’s body.
I missed you, boy. – Jon Snow
While the brother’s of the Night’s Watch take down mutineer after mutineer, Hodor quickly catches up with Locke, who is trying to take Bran away. Hodor lifts the man, freeing Bran in the process, and almost rips his head off with his bare hands. Bran reintegrates his body, leaving Hodor horrified and confused by what happened. However, Hodor still reacts to the voice of his master. He cuts Bran loose and runs back to the shack to free Jojen and Myra, while Bran finally catches a glimpse of Jon, fighting like a lion against the mutiness. Bran starts crawling towards him, and despite knowing that he’s not going to make it to Jon, I can’t help but hoping that the two brothers are going to be reunited. Jojen then arrives and gives Bran the choice: does he want his brother, or does he want to meet the three-eyed raven and master his powers? Bran wathes Jon fight his way to one of the shacks. Heartbroken, Bran tells Hodor to pick him up, so they can free Summer and go.
Inside the shack, Jon finally meets with the mutineer leader as he finishes gutting one of the men of the Night’s Watch. The mutineer leader taunts Jon, telling him that he will never be free. Jon attacks him and they fight, sword against knives, while… Ugh. Yes, writers of Game Of Thrones, we got it. People who fight with honour don’t always win. And the mutineer leader does get a chance to stab Snow right in the ribs. Jon fights how he can, but the leader disarms him. It even seems like Jon may be in deep, deep shit until one of Craster’s women buries a knife between the mutineer leader’s shoulder blades. Furious, he turns to her, but Jon Snow finishes him by pushing his sword through the base of his skull and his mouth. Neat.
Jon helps the girl up and joins his brothers outside, where they count their dead. Four, including Locke. They realize that one mutineer is missing and we cut to said mutineer running for his life in the frozen woods, only to be taken down by a snarling white blur that we all know is Ghost.
Ghost reunites with his master and Jon Snow offers Craster’s women to come live south of the wall, which they refuse. They, however, join the brothers of the Night’s Watch to watch Craster’s Keep burn to the ground, along with the corpses of the mutineer.