Game of Thrones: Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me

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Second Sons. An interesting title for the eight episode this season and a double layered one: (1) Second Sons is the name that the mercenary company of Daario Naharis goes by; (2) the episode literally deals with the second sons of Westeros: Tyrion Lannister, the younger son of Tywin Lannister, a dwarf and a brother to Ser Jaime Lannister, the youngest knight to join the Kingsguard in history of Westeros; Sandor CLegane, whose older brother Gregor gave him the burned scar and fear of flames; Stannis Baratheon, the younger brother of late king Robert and older brother of late self proclaimed king Renley, then there are Sam and Gendry, both who, although born first, in the sequence of unpredictable events, somehow turned second. Not the best Game of Thrones can offer us but nevertheless, it was the best of the worst we have seen this season. Also, the pace has changed – from running around, showing us glimpses of 90% of the characters per episode, and couple of minutes per each – this time around we stayed in one place for a reasonable amount of time, which gave certain events (read: Tyrion/Sansa’s wedding) enough time to breathe.

On a side note, has anyone noticed that as of recently the focal point switched from whores to penises?!  First we had Varys’s revenge tale as to how he lost his penis and what the price for that was; then we had Ygritte jokingly (or not) promising Jon Snow that she will cut his penis of if he betrays her; then there is Ramsay Snow who made no promises but went straight to action with Theon Greyjoy and last but not the least a bizarre, curious case of Melisandre, Gendry and penis leech, meant for, I presume, Joffrey? I seriously doubt there is any deep philosophical thinking behind these decisions, whatsoever, but nonetheless, when pattern occurs I am in no position to turn the blind eye.

SIDE NOTE: There is a reason behind the leeches but I choose not to spoil anyone. It will all make sense in awhile.

THE NEW COUPLE

The strength of GoT lies in pairing up the right characters together – Jaime and Brienne, Tyrion and Bronn, Arya and Tywin, Tyrion and Jon Snow, Tywin and Queen of Thornes, Varys and Littlefinger, and as of now, The Hound and the Wolf-girl, Arya Stark.

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The opening scene was just perfect. The casting was just as I imagined it and there are two more episodes to enjoy this (un)expected pairing.

THE ONION KNIGHT WALKS FREE

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Because Stannis still trusts him? Yes, probably. As a precaution for what Melisandre is about to do to Gendry? Most likely. Letting him go from imprisonment was slick way to let us know that Stannis is after all, the man of justice. He doesn’t want to be the king, rather he feels it is a duty that fell upon him and he must abide unless he wants darkness to devour them all. It doesn’t matter if Renly is his brother, or Gendry is his nephew or Robb is a son of the man he respected. He will burn them all because in his eyes this is it is the only right thing to do. Why? Because the Lord of Light demands it. Speaking of which, at one point Stannis asks of Ser Davos, “I saw a vision in the flames, a great battle in the snow. I saw it. And you saw whatever she gave birth to. I never believed, but when you see the truth, when it’s right there in front of you, as real as these iron bars, how can you deny that her god is real?” The unstated answer is, he may be real, but is he good? This is the question no one is asking.

MEANWHILE IN KING’S LANDING

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…we attended a wedding. A joyful event, some would say. Except, it is not. Sansa is marrying a Lannister dwarf. And Tyrion is marrying a minor. Tall and beautiful minor, but minor nevertheless. No one is happy. That is, no one but Tywin Lannister. However, contrary to the belief of our les miserable newlyweds, their wedding, which marks the opening of the wedding season, just might be the most cheerful event we will have the pleasure of attending. Not to spoil anyone, but Tyrion and Sansa are, in some weird way, loved by both Old Gods and the New. There are four important weddings all in all, but only three could be classified as the events. This one was one of the three. A part of my hoped this is the moment when they part from the book just so Tyrion would have the satisfaction of leaping across the table and stabbing the sniveling Joffrey in the eye with his dinner knife. Oh well.

On the other hand, although almost none of the guest had the best of times, Joffrey included, Lady Olenna managed to find a way to amuse herself.

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Their son will be your nephew, after you are wed to Cersei of course. You will be the king’s stepfather and brother in law. When you marry the King, Joffrey’s mother will become you’re sister-in-law and your son will be Loras’s nephew or grandson I am not sure but your brother will become your father-in-law that much is beyond dispute. 

CERSEI LANNISTER, THE CRYBABY

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I don’t know about you but I am getting fed up with Cersei Lannister. What I learned this week is that she’s really more like one of those annoying kids in elementary school who are always bullying others and threatening them with their fathers. It was almost as if she was saying “my dad could beat up your dad!” once Margaery Tyrell called her her sister. Talk about the daddy issues. Something similar happened when misfortunate Loras approached her on the balcony after the wedding and brought up a quote from his own dad, she dismissed him immediately with a “nobody cares what your father once told you.” Funny scene albeit even a funnier line, but then again, also a further revelation that she’s just a brat who idolizes her father; a brat that (un)fortunately doesn’t possess her father’s wit or the intelligence and therefor could never become him. Sure, she can imitate his icy veneer, but when the ice is cracked there’s a scared little girl hiding underneath. If it comes down to her against Margaery and Olenna, women with real confidence and brains, she stands no chance.

Speaking of women who annoy me.

LOVE IS IN THE AIR

Daenerys is on the verge of falling in love again. Gods be good.

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Daario Naharis, the new character of GoT, should spice things up a bit at Slaver’s Bay, especially when it comes to Jorah, man whose jealousy will get the better of him. But as usual, nothing really happens here in the east, though we got this new character, some standard nudity and demonstrative getting naked up from the bathtub. Meero is killed, however, and this will lead us to some new events but again, as usual, not today.

SAM, THE SLAYER

Finally! From Ser Piggy, the Coward to Sam, the Slayer in the blink of an eye. Main ingredients: a pretty girl, her father’s/husband’s son and a piece of dragonglass.

Sam might not be able to start a fire, Sam might be slow, Sam might be afraid of heights and pretty much everything else, but when true danger kicks in, Sam kicks right back. No one puts Gilly and the baby in the corner. No one. Not even the leader of White Walkers. The scene itself was wonderful. The weirwood, the Hitchcockian crows and a wonderful ice entity, up close and personal. Creepy, yet wonderful. But not how it happened in the book.

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That aside – the importance of dragonglass is finally revealed. As I mentioned earlier, White Walkers have three weaknesses: fire, dragonsteel (Valyrian steel) and obsidian otherwise known as the dragonglass. As faith would have it, Sam happens to be in the possession of the dragonglass dagger he found at the Fist of the First Men. However, prior to this incident, Sam was not aware of its magical properties; he acted purely on instinct and once he stabbed the White Walker – in defense with only weapon he had – the flesh and bones melted away leaving only an icy puddle. What a glorious moment in a story where things, more often than not, go terribly, terribly wrong. On the other hand, poor leader of White Walkers, little did he know when he only shoved the fat boy aside instead of killing him. I feel like he regretted sparing Sam’s life. Twice. Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me. Oh well, you can’t always learn from your mistakes.

No Jaime Lannister this week but I will live.

Bonus point: Listening to Davos read in the cell, which marks one of the most touching scenes of this season.

Best quote: And so my watch begins.

(Tyrion upon marrying Sansa willingly deciding he is not going to force her to have sex with him until she actually wants to)

P.S. Two of my friends, Colin Lalonde and Graeme Pente, complained about Sam dropping the dagger and leaving it behind at the Weirwood village. Considering I know what is coming up, it is safe to say that there is a reason behind this decision – Sam is about to meet someone who can be killed by a dragonglass but is not suppose to die, yet. In an effort to justify Sam’s reluctancy over killing another curious entity, creators have decided to leave the dragonglass out of the picture. A good choice because, first of all they have considerably parted from the book, and any other decision would make little to no sense. The other being must live. It is simple as that.

Text written my: Monika Ponjavic

4/5

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