“YOUR NAME IS THEON GREYJOY.”
Note: The following review goes into detail about the episode. SPOILER ALERT!
There still may not be a ton of action this season, but boy was this episode eventful. Not only did we have a massive meeting of two characters, Cersei also found the tables dramatically turned on her, while Sam “broke his vows.” We mightn’t be seeing events that rank up there with the “Red” and “Purple” weddings, but these are all still major happenings in the world of Game of Thrones. The pacing of some of these storylines still feels a little off to me, but there’s still plenty here to keep us captivated.
Cersei’s lies had to catch up to her at some stage. I guess the only surprise is that she’s been caught out by a religious order rather than one of her mortal enemies. It was actually rather easy to put together in the end, considering Lancel was now part of the religious order that could absolutely ruin Cersei. Olenna started off with another loss this week, as she found the High Sparrow to be a truly incorruptible obstacle, but she ended up using that to her advantage. To hear Olenna and Littlefinger speak so openly about Joffrey’s murder was fantastic, as was Littlefinger once again proving that he is the master of manipulation by giving Olenna the information she needed.
We had just seen the kind of situation Cersei will find herself in moments before when she went to visit Margaery. This was the least glamorous the Queen of the Seven Kingdoms has ever looked, and we can now look forward to seeing Cersei taken down a peg or two in the coming weeks. Cersei has never been a very sympathetic character at all, but there’s always been the sense that she has acted out of love for her family. That was kind of disproven, though, by her treatment of Margaery, which seems to have come about from sheer spite at times. One interesting thing to think about is just because Cersei has been locked up, it doesn’t mean that Margaery and Loras are out of trouble. While he may seem like a straight arrow, I definitely get the impression that the High Sparrow will get a kick out of taking down some of Kings Landing’s more upper class citizens.
Jamie continues to find himself imprisoned in Dorne. It’s actually rather amusing to see the brother and sister both imprisoned at the same time, although Jaime’s “cell” is a little more accommodating. His solitary scene with Myrcella this week wasn’t really that interesting at all, other than letting us know that Myrcella isn’t going to willingly leave Dorne. Far more interesting was the scene that took place far below Jaime’s cell, where Bronn and the Sand Snakes have been locked up. This was the most interesting that Oberyn’s daughters have been so far, with them actually appearing to have their own personalities outside of their drive for revenge. Bronn got a bit more than he bargained for when he found himself poisoned from a wound that was inflicted during the previous episode’s fight. Tellingly, though, Tyene provided him with the antidote, proving that they aren’t just soulless killers. I’m intrigued to see exactly where they take this story from here.
Travelling up North, we got to see the aftermath of Sansa’s wedding night. We’ve jumped forward a little bit here, so Sansa’s already very battered and bruised from Ramsay’s nightly visits. I’m disappointed to see Sansa returning to the damsel in distress, locked up in a tower day and night. She had seemingly come so far over the last half a season, only for Ramsay to knock her right back down again. We caught a short glimpse of Brienne here, but she’s still isolated outside the walls of Winterfell, waiting for a signal from Sansa that will never come now thanks to Theon. Theon’s sheer fear of Ramsay made him betray Sansa, but I still feel like redemption may be waiting for him at the end of this story.
Stannis also had a single scene this week, but it was a powerful one that reiterated his drive to win this war. Davos explained how the conditions are taking a large toll on his army, but Stannis believes in the visions shown to him by Melisandre. I voiced my concerns about Stannis and Shireen’s safety after their wonderful conversation a few episodes ago, and now it appears as if those concerns were well-founded. We’ve seen the power Melisandre can draw out of king’s blood in the past, and now Shireen is the closest source of that around. Stannis threw Melisandre out once she had suggested sacrificing his own daughter, and I truly hope that nothing more comes from this. However, they did make a big deal about having Shireen make the journey with Stannis, and with conditions worsening, Stannis might find himself tempted to turn the tide of battle by any means necessary.
Jon only left Castle Black this week for his journey beyond the Wall, so we got to experience Sam’s first experiences of the Night’s Watch without his best friend. As it turns out, life isn’t going to be any easier for Sam at all now. After losing one friend, he soon lost another, as Maester Aemon finally passed away in a rather touching scene. The Maester was over 100 when he died, but he was a constant source of wisdom and advice for many of the Night’s Watch, so his absence will be felt. In the wake of that loss, Sam also found himself having to defend Gilly from his own sworn brothers. Considering what they’ve been up against, it’s easy to forget that many of the Night’s Watch are murderers, rapists and other assorted bad guys. It certainly seemed like this dastardly duo were going to rape Gilly, and if it wasn’t for Ghost’s intervention, then they may have killed Sam too. Sam’s bravery did not go unrewarded, however, with Gilly hopping into bed with him in a sweet moment. Sam has very few friends left in Castle Black, which also happens to be a very dangerous place to be right now. It might be time for Sam to start thinking about finding a new place to live.
Last but not least, we got a terrific meeting of two main characters. Two major character’s meeting doesn’t actually happen a whole lot on this show, unless they’ve been living in the same city as each other. Seeing Daenerys come face to face with Tyrion was a true moment to behold. All of her life she has been told how evil the Lannisters are and now she finds herself finally face to face with one. I also loved how coldly dismissive she was of Jorah upon seeing him, even though it was clear that he had fallen on hard times to say the very least. In an ideal world, both Jorah and Tyrion would be gladly accepted into Dany’s inner circle and they could help her rule, but it’s obviously not that simple. I doubt Dany would come to trust Tyrion quickly at all, and she’s already been burned once by Jorah. This is going to be fascinating to watch unfold.
Game of Throne’s best Season 5 episode yet wasn’t a barnstorming, action-packed episode, but it was just as captivating. Cersei has finally found the tables turned on herself, while Jaime sits in a comfy prison room in Dorne. Sam found comfort in the arms of Gilly, while Castle Black becomes as dangerous as ever for him. Winter continues to close in while Stannis marches on Winterfell, and Sansa eagerly awaits a rescuer. The real scene-stealer from the episode proved to be Daenerys and Tyrion meeting up for the first time. These are two vitally important main characters meeting up for the first time, and I have to admit it gave me chills to see it. I have no idea where this goes from here, but I can guess it won’t be smooth sailing, and I can’t wait to find out.
92/100 – Superb
What did you think of Tyrion and Daenerys meeting up for the first time? Where do the two of them go from here? Tweet me @OldSnake24. Also, be sure to follow us @YouNerded!
*We do not comment on anything relating to previews for the next episode and beyond.
The Night Of: “The Call of the Wild” Review
Vice Principals: “The Foundation of Learning” Review
The Night Of: “Ordinary Death” Review
Joe Hill’s ‘The Fireman’ Review
How Speedrunning Changed My Perception of Games
Vice Principals: “Circles” Review
The Night Of: “Samson and Delilah” Review
‘Batman: The Killing Joke’ Review
Vice Principals: “Run for the Money” Review
The Night Of: “The Season of the Witch” Review