Our long national geek nightmare is over! Game of Thrones has returned for 10 weeks of fantasy awesomeness and this is the second installment in our lively talk-backs and reviews of each episode. A warning, and the only one before we dive in, this column is specifically for people watching the show live week-by-week so if you don’t want spoilers, don’t continue.
I think we can all agree that weddings are a good idea in principle. Commitment, nice clothes and all that. However, in the world of Westeros, weddings just seem to go….poorly. We’ll get to the “Purple Wedding” and the departure of our first major casualty of the year, but a double warning to depart if you don’t want to know who did from the show this week.
Before the royal wedding, we did a quick check-in with the few groups that weren’t touched upon in last week’s episode: Two Swords.
Mellisandre is still keeping Storm’s End alit by burning heretics and we have a brief scene where she torches the Queen’s brother (no, no, she’s cool with it so that makes it ok) and then begins taking an interest in the religious views of Stannis’ daughter. When is Davos going to snap and start throwing onions at everyone onscreen?
The Boltons have been raised to the status of major villains in the TV series, where in the book they’re more of a referred-to threat. All the Boltons are briefly reunited and Mr. Flayed Man isn’t extremely happy that Ramsey spent the entirety of last season turning Theon from proud Kraken into Reek. I haven’t particularly enjoyed that change from the books either as there hasn’t seemed to be much of a point to showing it (other than sadism) before this episode. Flayed Men and Krakens look like they will soon be clashing at Moat Cailin as “Lord” Bolton is determined to take the north he was given for his part in the Red Wedding.
The other group we didn’t check in on last week is my personal least-favorite thread in either the books or the show: Bran’s Psychedelic Warg Rodeo Road Show. Wow, but someone whacked Bran with a puberty club over the break; he looks four years older. I’m not exactly sure what Bran’s point is both in the books and on the show, but in this episode we saw them journeying ever further north and Bran had a moment with a weirwood and saw visions of another tree to which he needs to travel.
The entirely of the rest of the episode took place in King’s Landing leading up to, encompassing and dealing with the fallout from Joffery and Margery’s wedding. Before the wedding we got the beginning of what I think will be a fun subplot as Bron begins to teach Jamie how to become sword-worthy with his left hand. We also had the hammer fall from Shae being observed in Tyrion’s quarters last episode. Tyrion had Bron put her on a ship back to Pentos before Tywin could get his hands on her. Then we had a magnificent shot of Westeros’ main cathedral and the wedding was on! It was a royal wedding that would have made England envious.
After the wedding, of course, comes the wedding feast and Joffery plus alcohol plus being the grand center of attention made for one of his most stunningly brattish performances to-date. He’s so loathsome and annoying that you wish the little prat would just fall over dead. Then he does. Tyrion, whom he’s been taking great delight in torturing, hands him a goblet of wine as was ordered and he promptly turns purple, and gurgles his bratty, last gurgle. I don’t think there has ever been a child(ish) character that more people were overjoyed to see die. It’s almost like incestuous bastards are a bad idea….
At any rate, Joffery managed one final act of brattitude by pointing at Tyrion as he was dying and America’s favorite imp was trundled off into custody. Who’s in charge? What’s going to happen to Tyrion? Will Margery ever get to a wedding night with a king? Tune in next week as we continue our adventures and discuss the events of the Purple Wedding in the talkback below.
By the way, this script was written by George R. R. Martin himself. He usually does one per season and anything to avoid GETTING US BOOK SIX!!! DAMMIT, GEORGE!