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Game of Thrones 4×1 Recap – One episode, two swords

We’re baaacccckkkk and we are so thrilled for a brand new season of Game of Thrones. With a new House in town and the taste of vengeance in the air, this season guarantees to be fantastic. Let’s dive in. First and foremost, we have a credits update! Meet Dreadfort, the keep of House Bolton and the current location of poor Theon. Also, Meerean makes an appearance, the slave city with a giant pyramid. Dany’s on her way there but more on that later.

House Lannister

We kick off the episode with a scene symbolizing the complete destruction of House Stark with a true song of fire and Ice. Tywin Lannister stands watch as Ice, Ned Stark’s gigantic Valyrian steel blade, is welded down in fire, forging two new swords for House Lannister. Tywin completes the destruction by tossing Ned’s wolf-skin scabbard into the fire as the Rains of Castamere plays eerily in the background. The Red Wedding may have happened ten months ago for us, but in the GOT world, it was mere weeks ago, and it continues to be the wound that keeps bleeding.

[ASIDE: This entire scene was painful to watch, and served as a terse reminder of the events of Season 3. Just like the Red Wedding, Tywin stands in the shadows, unwilling to reveal himself and his role. Tywin constantly takes what isn’t his and remolds it into something new, giving the appearance of power and bold courage. But is Tywin really that courageous? Isn’t he known for hiding under Casterly Rock during Robert’s Rebellion, only daring to step forth into King’s Landing when he knew the city was starving, ripe for sacking? Does he ever take responsibility for what he does? Was the Red Wedding not a cowardly move in itself? Tywin feared the Young Wolf and thus found a way to defeat him without facing him in battle. I think Tywin Lannister is a façade – a man who thinks he has all the power in the world but is really living in a house of cards, with children who are sleeping together and a grandson who holds a false claim to the throne. Every empire burns to the ground, and I can’t wait until Tywin Lannisters’ does just that. END OF ASIDE]

Tywin presents one of the new Valyrian blades to his one-handed son, Jaime Lannister, who clumsily receives his new sword. Tywin questions Jaime’s intentions for his future, imploring Jaime to leave the King’s Guard (since he can’t really fight with a sword anymore) and return to Casterly Rock and rule in his place. Jaime refuses. His honor, his word, his reputation are already spoiled and he refuses to abandon yet another post at the whims of another. Tywin is shocked that his 40 year old son still doesn’t get it and dismisses Jaime, but allows him to keep his present. “A one handed man with no family needs all the help he can get.” As Jaime leaves his fathers’ chamber, we see a sly [sexy] smile spread across his face. Wonder what that’s about.

Next, we catch up with everyone’s favorite imp, Tyrion Lannister, Master of Coin, accompanied by Bron and Pod. They are waiting to receive the party from Dorne, which sailed to King’s Landing for Joffrey’s wedding. In brilliant GOT fashion, Tyrion proceeds to discuss the Dornish sigils and the “bad blood” between House Martell and House Lannister, clueing the audience to the significance of the new characters and providing us with a Westerosi history lesson.

Much to Tyrion’s dismay, the Dornish reveal that Prince Doran did not sail to the capital due to illness. His brother, Prince Oberyn of House Martell, came instead and snuck into the city in the wee morning hours. Tyion has an idea where he may find him.

Enter stage left – the one and only Oberyn Martell aka The Red Viper of Dorne. Oberyn is with his great paramour, Ellaria Sand (Sand because she’s a Dornish bastard; like Snow for our beloved Jon), and the pair are inspecting Baylish’s whores. After Prince Oberyn picks a boy who can he can have his way with, he suddenly becomes distracted as the tune of Rains of Castamere float through the brothel.   Oberyn ventures off to find the cause of the disturbance, despite Ellaria’s pleas.

Oberyn stumbles upon two couples whistling the Lannister tune. “Forgive me for staring, I don’t see many Lannisters where I come from.”

[ASIDE: The way those words ooze out of his mouth, and the way he burns his fingers on the candle as he walks, oh la la. I am already in love with Oberyn. END OF ASIDE]

The tension between the Lannister couples and Oberyn seeps out of the TV. The men make jabs at each other until the Red Viper stings. “May I tell you a secret? You’re not a golden lion. You’re just a pink little man whose far too slow on the draw.” Then, BAM, knife in one of the Lannisters wrists.

Tyrion enters just in time to disrupt the argument. Oberyn already knows the “King’s Imp Uncle” and the two men go for a stroll, talking truths to one another. Oberyn thinks Joffrey is offended since he is the second son, not the ruling Prince of Dorne. Tyrion questions Oberyn’s intentions, knowing there is more to the visit than attending a wedding. Then, in another genius dialogue-driven history lesson, we find out the true reason for the Martell/Lannister hatred. The last time Oberyn was in the capital was for his sister, Elia Martell’s, wedding to Rhagaer Targaryen. Elia had his children and cared for them until Rhagaer left her for another woman, the “kidnapped” Lyanna Stark, which caused Robert to wage war. After Rhagaer was killed, the Lannisters sacked King’s Landing, killing all remaining Targaryens, including Elia and her children. It is said that Elia was raped by the Mountain and then split in half. If this is the case, Oberyn holds Tywin directly responsible for her death and the deaths of his nephew and niece. “Tell your father I’m here. Tell him the Lannisters aren’t the only ones who pay their debts.”

Whoa. These two actors were phenomenal together. The tension, the conflict, the dialogue, the accent. All fantastic. The chemistry between them is fantastic. GIMME MORE, PLEASE!

After Tyrion’s depressing conversation with his new wife, Sansa Stark, he goes back to his room to find Shae draped over his bed. She knows it’s a dangerous place but insisted on seeing him, since she hasn’t gotten any in weeks. Tyrion turns her down and makes her leave. In a fit of rage, she reveals she knows he tried to dismiss her from the city and she wants him to be a man and say it to her himself. Tyrion reveals he has no idea about Varys’ visit last season, as we correctly assumed. Then, Shae storms out of the room….and the audience sees that one of Cersei’s little birds was outside chirping. Uh oh.

Speaking of the Golden Queen, we catch up with Cersei Lannister as she presents her brother with a golden hand, with the help of the Un-Maester Qyburn. Cersei reveals that Maester Qyburn helped to relieve her of some symptoms. (Pregnancy symptoms? Or no longer able to get pregnant symptoms? Is this her way out of her marriage to Loras?) The twins talk about the events that got them here and Jaime’s plans for the future. He reveals he wants to stay in King’s Landing so he can be with her. He tries to seduce his sister (EW) but she denies him, making it so both Lannister boys aren’t getting any. Cersei then breaks his heart – she tells him he was gone for too long and it took too long to get back to her. The incestual scene is disrupted when Cersei’s bird flies into the room to tattle on Tyrion.

jaimegoldenhand

We get a glimpse of the Royal Wedding plans when we catch up with Olenna and Margaery Tyrell and Jaime and Joffrey. Olenna, determined to make a fashion statement at the wedding, is displeased with the necklace options for Margaery and sends her little doves out to find the most beautiful one in King’s Landing. Margaery has a different idea but Olenna warns her to be careful because even the walls have ears.

Jaime and King Joff discuss security for the wedding, and the fact that the war isn’t over as long as Stannis lives. Joffrey isn’t interested and would rather squabble with his uncle, blaming him for his imprisonment and poking fun at Jaime for being a 40 year old knight with no hand who has done “no good deeds.” Did anyone else think Jaime must’ve been thinking, “How did I create that,” as he watched Joffrey walk away?

House Targaryen

We get our first glimpse of the Daenerys Stormborn, Mother of Dragons, being just that, mother of dragons. She’s sitting with a dragon in her lap, stroking Rhaego as if he is a puppy. The dragons are gigantic and have almost doubled in size. Suddenly, the other two dragons return with a dead sheep and the dragons begin to fight. Rhaego even snaps as Dany before the three fly off. Holy. Shit. The dragons are scary and on their way to becoming massive and uncontrollable. Ser Jorah Mormont so wisely states, “They are dragons, Khaleesi. They can never be tamed, not even by their mother.” Why thank you Jorah, I shall call you Captain Obvious.

danydragons

Dany heads back to camp to discover Daario Naharis and Greyworm are missing – gambling. After she walks through her gigantic camp, she discovers the two men holding weapons to determine who has the right to ride beside Dany on road to Meereen. Dany quickly reins the boys in and we discover that Daario and Greyworm have a cute bro-competition going on. This scene felt kind of pointless and more like a chance to showcase the immense size of Dany’s horde and the new actor playing Daario Naharis but I’ll take any Dany time I can get.

Later, Dany and Missandei talk about Meereen and Missandei lets her know that she thinks the slave masters should fear Dany before Daario interrupts the women to talk strategy. He brings Dany three flowers, the flowers of Meereen, which are used for tea and poison, telling her if she wants to win over the peoples affections, she must become one with their lands. Dany is smitten, as are we, but seems to recognize Daario’s ploy for her heart.

Suddenly, the horde comes to a halt. There are dead children, mutilated and strung up, on every mile marker between there and Meereen – 163 in total. Barristan Selmy offers to ride ahead and bury the children but she refuses. She wants to see them all, and wants them to remove their collars before they are buried. Dany is going to liberate the enslaved and conquer the slavers. I’m afraid already for the masters of Meereen.

House Stark

The length of the Stark section is dwindling, you know, since they’re almost all dead.

Sansa – Sansa is in mourning. During the Season 3 finale we saw her immediate reaction to her brother and mother’s deaths. Now knows the details. She stays awake at night thinking about how the Lannisters (via Bolton and Frey) mutilated her family members. They chopped off Robb’s head and sewed his direwolf’s there in its place. They sliced her mother’s neck to the bone and then threw her body into the river, discarded like trash. There’s no cheering up Sansa, not even with lemon cakes (um, can I have Sansa’s lemon cake? My mouth is practically watering). Don’t worry Sansa, misery loves company and she’s got plenty of company in the legion of GOT fans.

It takes a fool to cheer Sansa up, literally. After creepily following her through the garden, Ser Dontos — the former knight she rescued from Joffrey in Season 2 — gives her a charming necklace as a gift. The family heirloom is all he has left and wants her to have it and wear it proudly.

Later, Brienne of Tarth tries to convince Jaime that he has to honor his pledge to rescue Catelyn Stark’s daughters. With Arya presumed dead and Sansa married to his brother, that makes things a bit difficult for Jaime. With Jaime’s previous speech to Tywin about breaking his word, is it wrong of me to have hope that he’ll follow through? Also, don’t you love that Brienne and Jaime are still besties?

Jon Snow – Man, Ygritte is a woman scorned. To be honest, I can’t say I blame her. If my man left me for a 600-some guys that wear only black, I’d be a little peeved too. We check-in with Ygritte as she’s making arrows, surely thinking about firing more of them at Jon Snow. Her angry arrow making is short-lived as Tormund Giantsbane approaches.

Is it just me or does Giantsbane remind you of Rumpelstiltskin in his angry wig? No, maybe try upside down? I don’t know, I can’t take him seriously whenever he’s on my TV.

Tormund Giantsbane rumpelstiltskin shrek angry wig

In case you forgot (and missed Jon Snow’s recap to the council), last season a few of the Wildlings, led by Tormund Giantsbane, scaled The Wall and now intend to attack Castle Black from the south. Once they have control of the castle, they will open the gates to The Wall so Mance Rayder’s army can invade the southern lands. Right now they are waiting for Mance Rayder’s signal and it will be a big signal, says Jon Snow.

Anyway, back to Giantsbane and Ygritte. He’s giving her a hard time about Jon Snow, questioning whether or not she actually killed him. If she didn’t, their entire plan is at risk. Their conversation is interrupted when some weirdos show up. A group of tall pale bald men with creepy scars start talking about body types in a way that says, “I’m not a personal trainer, I’m just hungry and you seem like a delectable piece of meat.” Now, I’ve been binge watching NBC’s Hannibal lately and I just don’t know if I can handle another cannibal in my life right now. This group is called the Thenns and they are here to help with the Castle Black attack.

Speaking of Castle Black, let’s catch up with Jon Snow. He’s hanging out with Samwell, reacting to the Red Wedding news. He explains to Sam that he was always jealous of his brother Robb, but never wished harm upon him. Samwell knows the feeling since he feels that way about Jon Snow. To be honest, I was a bit disappointed in this whole scene. Like, that’s it, Jon Snow? You aren’t a little bit angry? Did Samwell tell him about seeing Bran? Are you at least going to try to save Bran? Maybe try to track down Arya? I NEED ANSWERS.

Well, at least he’s going to give the Night’s Watch council some answers. Members of the council want to end Jon Snow for breaking his vow (“You know nothing, Jon Snow”) and killing Qhorin Halfhand. Jon Snow begs the council to stop stressing about the little details and start preparing for the Wildlings. Can the Night’s Watch ready themselves in time for the attack?

Arya – Arya is still with The Hound. The Hound is obviously just looking for somewhere to drop Arya and not feel bad about it. Now they’re on their way to her crazy Aunt Lysa in the Vale of Arryn. The dynamic between these actors is really growing (see Jaime and Brienne from last season). Their banter is perfect and I love seeing hints of The Hound’s personality.

During their road trip, they decide to stop at a local tavern where several of The Mountain’s men are pissing outside, harassing the barkeep, etc. Arya immediately recognizes the pisser as Polliver, who in Season 2 captured Arya and her buddies after killing a bunch of people in the prison camp. Polliver steals Arya’s sword Needle and kills her friend Lommy because he cannot walk. Conveniently, Polliver still carries Needle.

Upon entering the tavern, Polliver recognizes The Hound and starts trying to impress him with his torturous ways. The Hound teases Polliver and it’s obvious that The Hound has decided to kill all of these people but is just waiting for them to make the first move. “You’re a talker,” he says, taking Polliver’s drink. “Listening to talkers makes me thirsty.” The fight starts.

Arya retreats to the corner. This fight seems really tough; The Hound does not seem to be winning. Also, there’s no backtrack. The quiet mixed with the clangs and the grunts is making me really anxious. Finally, Arya makes her move and the music kicks in. She gets her sword. Once Polliver is without a weapon, she stands over him and repeats the words he once said to Lommy, “Something wrong with your leg, boy? Can you walk? I’ve got to carry you. Fine little blade. Maybe I’ll pick my teeth with it.” She then slowly drives the blade into his throat, just like he did to Lommy. Meet the darker Arya of season four.

No news from Theon, Bran, or Rickon this week.

House Baratheon

There’s a brief chat between Brienne and Margaery where Brienne tells her what she remembers of Renly’s death. She saw a black fog with Stannis’ face murder Renly and vows to avenge “their king.” Quietly Margaery reminds her “Joffrey is their king now.” No update from Stannis but he should watch his back.

Rock Paper Watch’s Top Quote of 4×1:

Jenn’s Pick – “Perhaps I should just let Joffrey choose it for me, end up with a string of dead sparrow heads around my neck.” – Margaery Tyrell to Olenna.Elizabeth’s Pick – “Are you sure we’re not related? Ever since I’ve returned, every Lannister I’ve seen has been a miserable pain in my ass. Maybe you’re a Lannister too. You’ve got the hair for it. You’ve got the looks.” – Jaime to Brienne

Game of Thrones Recaps are authored by Jenn O’Mera (Lannister and Targaryen) and Elizabeth Bond (Stark and Baratheon).  Feel free to contact any author with feedback or questions.  


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Top 10 Moments from GOT 3×8 “Second Sons”

Okay, so we know we dropped the ball with our Game of Thrones recap from two weeks ago, but RPW was actually on vacation in Jamaica so we hope you can forgive us.  Since we’re now all officially suffering from GOT withdrawal [since there was no new episode last week;  I’m still bitter], I’ve decided to help combat our pain with a top 10 list.  Here are our top 10 favorite moments from “Second Sons” featuring not one, but all four of the major houses.

10. Arya’s face when she realized she was going to her family

The last we saw Arya, she was captured by the Hound. We catch up with her again as the dynamic duo travel through Westeros. The Hound takes Arya to the Red Fork river which she mistakes for the Blackwater.  The Hound shocks her when he finally tells her of his plan to return her to the Twins. “Why there?” she asks because she has no idea about the impending wedding between Edmure and Frey’s daughter.  The Hound informs her of the news, and his plans to sell her back to Catelyn and King Robb.  This is not what she was expecting and Arya’s face is priceless.  She looks like a kid who was just told Santa is real. 

HoundArya

9. Cersei threating to have Margaery killed 

We saw Margaery initiate some soon-to-be sister action and Cersei was not having it.  After a pathetic attempt by Margaery to get friendly with Cersei, Cersei scares the crap out of her by threatening to have her murdered in her sleep. 

cersei-margaery-strangle

Cersei 1 Margaery 0

8. Stannis wishing death upon the Usurpers

After some sick experiment with Melisandre and Gendry (we’ll discuss further down the list), Stannis makes some big death requests from the Lord of Light.  He asks for the LOL to kill the three usurpers to the Iron Throne – Robb Stark, Balon Greyjoy, and Joffrey Baratheon.  

Stannis_and_leeches

7. Sansa’s composed strength during her horrendous wedding

Poor Sansa suffered the wedding from hell.  She was forced into marrying Tyrion, threatened to be raped by Joffrey, and something just felt wrong about Sansa’s family (or who is left of it) being completely absent from the ceremony.  But through it all, Sansa showed amazing grace, composure ,and strength well beyond her years.  As Tyrion Lannister once said, “Lady Stark, you may survive us yet.”

SansaTyrion

6. Olenna mocking her grandchildren for their twisted family tree

olenna-grandchildren
Enough said; Olenna Out. 

5. Tyrion telling Joffrey he can screw his wife with a wooden c*ck

Joffrey pushed Tyrion’s buttons quite a few times during the entire wedding ceremony.  But nothing was worse than when Joffrey tried to force Tyrion and Sansa into performing a public bedding ceremony.  Tyrion was quite drunk and not interested in publicly consummating the marriage.  After Joffrey continued to endlessly push him, he stabbed the table with a knife and threatened the king with this line: “You’ll be f—ing your own bride with a wooden cock,” if the king continued.

tyrionjoffrey

4. Tyrion defying his father by refusing to sleep with Sansa

Tywin Lannister set up this wedding, so he was determined to make sure the marriage was consummated.  He made a point to visit Tyrion at the wedding table and order Tyrion to impregnate his new bride with a Lannister child ASAP.  Instead of heeding his father’s request,  Tyrion got plastered during the wedding.  After Tywin put the fire out on the whole Joffrey incident, Tyrion left the reception with his wife.  They returned to their chambers where they discussed Sansa’s super young age, and Tywin’s orders.  Sansa finally started drinking and undressing, accepting her fate and preparing to do the deed with Lord Tyrion.  But, in a shock to everyone, Tyrion tells Sansa he won’t do it.

 

3. Gendry survives the Red Priestess

Gendry

Melisandre used Gendry as a pawn in a disgusting experiment to prove to Ser Davos that the LOL was the real thing.  She seduced Gendry and slept with him, then deceived him and literally used his blood (and leeches) so Stannis could offer symbolic sacrifices to the LOL in the form of  the three usurpers to the throne.  The big shock here is the Gendry actually survived the Red Priestess.  After some convincing from the Onion Knight, Stannis must have demanded that his nephew be left alive.  Thank you, Stannis. #TeamGendry

gendrymoving

2. Daario bends the knee and swears fealty to the Dragon Queen

daario

Let’s take a minute to appreciate the new man in Dany’s life, Daario Naharis. Those eyes! Those cheek bones! OMG! Okay, back to the list.

Daario Naharis (previously lieutenant in the Second Sons) fights for beauty above all.  When Dany met with the captains and lieutenant of the Second Sons in an effort to buy their swords, he saw her beauty.  His captains did not.  When they ordered Daario to assassinate Dany, he refused and he killed both of them.  He brought their heads to Dany after sneaking through her camp and holding Missandei hostage.  But he quickly revealed himself, their heads, and his intentions.  All we can say is, we want more where this came from.

DaarioIsYoursgif

1. Sam stabs the White Walker with a piece of dragon glass (and then leaves it behind like an idiot)

Our favorite moment of the last episode of GOT was also the last scene. Intentional? Probably. Regardless, here’s what happened.

Sam and Gilly are holed up in a cabin, trying to build a fire (again) and talking about baby names for Gilly’s son (it won’t be Russell).  Sam notices a large gathering of crows outside their cabin and the crows are making a lot of noise.  He decides to go out and investigate and orders Gilly to stay put.  Sam goes outside, sword in hand, only to see his worst nightmare – a White Walker is approaching.  The White quickly destroys Sam’s sword and makes a move for Gilly and the baby (who obviously came outside).  So in a moment of panic, Sam reaches for the only weapon on him – the black dragon glass that he’s been carrying around.  He stabs the White in the back and the creature explodes.  The two run for their lives with a flock of crows chasing after them, but they left the glass, and their best chance of surviving, behind.

WhiteWalker


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Game of Thrones 3×1 Recap


Welcome back Game of Throne watchers!  This is it, the highly anticipated Season 3 has officially started.  Was it everything you hoped it would be?  We recap it below; feel free to share your opinions in the comments sections!

House Stark

At the start of Season 3, we find the Stark family even more disjointed and distant as Winterfell now sits abandoned.  Did you notice the smoke at Winterfell during the opening credits?  Or how about the addition of Astapor (more on that later)?

The episode picks up moments after the Season 2 finale with Sam running as fast as he can in that shag carpet of a coat from White Walkers.  Sam finds one of his Night’s Watch brothers dead in the snow, CRADLING HIS OWN HEAD.  (Commentary from GOT Viewing Party:  Whoa, he’s holding his own head, that’s so badass.  And he looks like Jesus.) But there’s no time to dwell; the zombies are coming!  Thankfully, Ghost is there to attack the White Walker and the remaining members of the Night Watch set the creepy thing on fire.   It’s official; the White Walkers are coming.

Jon Snow makes it to the wildling camp called Frostfangs and it’s time for him to meet the King Beyond the Wall, Mance Raydar, but not before seeing his first giant.  After mistaking Mance for a wildling named Giantsbane and bowing embarrassingly, we finally meet the King Beyond the Wall and former Nights Watchmen.  Hello Cirian Hinds, welcome!  (Note:  Did anyone else watch USA’s Political Animals last summer?  He’s fantastic and I’m so excited to see him in this role!)  I’m already in love with Mance as he ever so observantly points out “The girl likes yah, yah like her back?” (Check yes or no).

Jon seems to prove himself to Mance (for now) when he reveals his search for freedom stems from the desire to fight White Walkers and the disdain he feels for the Lord Commander complicity with Craster’s baby-sacrificing ways.

Did you know notice Snow hobbling?  I tried to look for it but nothing stood out.  Kit Harrington hilariously broke his ankle after losing the keys to his London flat.  He fell from a window while trying to break in, inconveniently, right before filming was set to start.  His production schedule was pushed back as much as possible and body doubles we’re used for several walking or fighting shots.  I’ll be obsessively looking for clues to the injury all season, care to join?

Robb and Catelynn arrive at Harrenhal, the previous base for the Lannister army and brief home to Arya (there’s something sad about this, they almost had her!).  The soldiers are tired and frustrated, they want to fight, but the Lannisters continue to lead them on a wild goose chase.  The only opportunity for battle in the future would be at King’s Landing. Are we going to see the Stark vs. Lannister showdown soon?  I hope so.

At Harrenhal (now owned by Petyr Baelish), they find 200 dead Northerners.  Since Catelyn allowed Jaime to leave last season in exchange for Sansa and Arya, this only increases Robb’s rage towards his mother.  In his eyes, the blood of 200 men is on her hands.  Among the bodies, they find a survivor named Qyburn, something tells me he will be important later.

We catch up with Sansa at Kings Landing.  Her and Shae are watching the ships, Sansa is making up stories about the ships, where they’re going, and what it would be like to escape onboard.  Shae asks “why should I make up a story when I know the truth?” and Sansa replies “because the truth is always either terrible, or boring.”  Quite a change in Sansa, she’s no longer hopeful or optimistic.  Witnessing the evil at King’s Landing has changed her and now she’s just trying to survive.

Where is Bran?  Where is Arya?  I’m going to need an update on the rest of the Stark clan ASAP.

House Lannister

The Lannisters are back and badder than ever. We open with a touching scene between brother and sister, Tyrion and Cersei. Tyrion has clearly become a paranoid man, but who can blame him? His own sister attempted to murder him, she employs hundreds of spies, and his father hates him. Unfortunately, Tyrion didn’t realize the extent of that hate until he paid Lord Tywin a friendly visit. Tyrion tried to make it seem like the visit was driven by love, but really it was driven by greed. No surprises there – Tyrion is, after all, a Lannister. But Tywin cruelly reminded Tyrion that he is only his son by law, and that Tywin despises Tyrion and blames him for the death of his mother. Poor Tyrion. My heart broke for him as Tywin so callously dismissed him, but not without one last threat to Shae. Something tells me Tywin wouldn’t be as stupid as Cersei to collect the wrong whore.

I find myself once again admiring the work of Charles Dance. You may recall he similarly ripped into Jaime Lannister in Season 1, while ripping into a stag carcass. This scene last night felt oddly reminiscent of that scene, except this time the carcass was Tyrion. No one can deliver a powerful monologue quite like Mr. Dance.

Elsewhere in the Lion’s Den, King Joffrey and Queen Margaery find themselves in Flea Bottom [is this a reference to our beloved U.S. capital?!]. Margaery decided to stop her wagon to visit the children who are now orphans after the Battle of Blackwater. The scene was touching, and I sense she is somewhat aware of what the Lannisters are really like, and plans to do some serious damage control for their reputation and the throne.

The next time we see the Lannisters, Cersei planned a family dinner for herself and Joffrey, and Margaery and Loras. I must say, what an awkward family dinner! But this scene was fantastic. Not only did we have four major characters in one scene together [which is such a treat!], but we had King Joffrey freely making fun of Cersei and Margaery proving to be as perfect, if not more so, than Lady Sansa. I sensed tension and jealously brewing within Cersei. We all know Margaery wants to become Queen. Now, she is betrothed to the King of Westeros and the Queen Regent will soon no longer be needed. Cersei knows what Margaery is doing. Lord Tyrion may just be safe for now, as Queen Cersei just set her sights on a new threat.

The only Lannister we didn’t catch up with was Jaime, who is currently on route on King’s Landing with Brienne of Tarth. We need to find out what the Gorgeous Kingslayer is up to ASAP!

House Baratheon

Our favorite bearded captain, Davos ended up surviving the Blackwater Battle and is stuck on a pile of rocks. (Commentary from GOT Viewing Party:  OH HEYYYY, it’s that guy!  What is wrong with his face?  Is that fungus or really bad sunburn?)  Thankfully, he’s rescued by the pirate, Salladhor Saan.  From the pirate we learn that Stannis is licking his battle wounds at Dragonstone with his creepy witch lady.  They have been burning people alive for the Lord of Light.  Davos vows to takedown Melisandre and get Stannis on track (good luck).

Davos finally makes it back to Stannis (Commentary from GOT Viewing Party:  Stannis seems to have gotten a lot of gray hairs, no?) and wishes to discuss evil witch lady with him in private.  Tough luck man, us ladies are smarter than that. After pushing his buttons enough, Davos turns on Melisandre by drawing his dagger.  Stannis has Davos arrested.

What is this ladies game?  What does she get out of Stannis sitting on the Iron Throne?  Is our bearded captain going to be the hero that brings Stannis back?

House Targaryen

Say it with me now, DRAGONS!!!!!!!

Dany’s scenes were my favorite last night. The dragons looked incredible, her script was on point, and the special effects were amazing. Not only can the dragons swim (I was shocked!!) but they can catch gigantic fish, fry their food, and eat all in 5 seconds!  The dragons are growing quickly, and it’s no wonder considering their efficient diet. The Dothraki on ships was priceless – it’s like a ship full of babes!

Dany and her Khalasar soon landed in Astapor, another beautiful set location added to Game of Thrones. Dany is finally going to have to prove how far she will go to reclaim the Iron Throne. Dany found herself in front of The Unsullied – a eunuch slave army full of men who fear nothing, and apparently men that don’t need nipples. But The Unsullied are terrifying. Each one had to kill an innocent newborn baby in front of their mother to join the ranks.

Dany may appear to have the determination of a warrior, but she has the heart of a mother. She was noticeably bothered by the thought of 8,000 dead babies.  Now, she must choose whether to take on these fearless slave soldiers as her own, or dismiss them based on her maternal instincts.  Dany’s gentle heart again gets the best of her as a cute, young village girl rolls her a ball and playfully urges her to open.   Inside is a deadly scorpion, spider thing.  The girl smiles with her yucky mouth, revealing it to be a trick from the warlocks.  Luckily, Ser Barristan Selmy arrived just in time to save our Dragon from the deadly trick.

In Season 2, we saw Dany learn valuable lessons in trust. If she wants to survive Season 3, and become the Queen of Westeros, she needs to learn to keep her emotions in check. Her gentle heart proved to be her weakness in Season 1 when she trusted the evil witch which ultimately led to her losing Khal Drogo and her unborn child. If she keeps behaving as she did in last night’s episode, it could prove to be her ultimate weakness. To gain the loyalty of an army, even a slave army, Dany has to prove that she is strong and powerful like a true ruler, not weak and gentle like a woman. It’s time for Dany to embrace her ruthless side, and become the true Dragon.

I LOVED the scene where Barristan pledged his allegiance to Dany and I can tell that this will be a very pivotal move for her. This moment was also super emotional. It proves to her that there are still people who are loyal to House Targaryen in Westeros and that the Targaryen’s still have faithful servants in powerful places. If someone like Barristan Selmy supports her claim to the throne, who else in Westeros will do so? More importantly, will Barristan shed light on Jorah’s true reason for initially joining Dany?

One thing is clear, Astapor is a dangerous place and The Unsullied are terrifying. Dany needs to be smart and cunning to survive in this city. And, if she can prove that she is smart and powerful and become the leader of The Unsullied, can anyone stop Dany and her army from retaking the throne?

Rock Paper Watch’s Top Quotes of 3X1:
“If I wanted to kill you, do you think I’d let a wooden door stop me?” – Cersei Lannister to her brother, Tyrion

There you have it! Season 3 has officially started and we can’t wait to see where it takes us. Did anyone else find the timelines confusing? The wildling story picks up right after Season 2’s finale, so does everything going on at Kings Landing. But, Dany’s dragons seem to be years older than when we last saw them?

We look forward to hearing your thoughts on the third seasons premiere (no book spoilers please!) in the comments below.

Game of Thrones Recaps are authored by Jenn O’Mera (Lannister and Targaryen) and Elizabeth Bond (Stark and Baratheon).  Feel free to contact any author with feedback or questions.


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Countdown to GOT Season 3 – #2

#2 Tyrion Lannister – “I much like my head. I don’t want to see it removed just yet.”

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Our countdown is almost over and I hate to admit that I’m happy about that fact. That’s only because it means we will finally be watching a new episode!! It feels like an eternity since I’ve done that.

And I digress. Our #2 quote in our countdown for most anticipated moments of Season 3 comes from Tyrion Lannister. I have to admit, this is my favorite character in Westeros. It shocks me considering how I feel about everyone he’s related to, but I think most people would agree that Tyrion Lannister is The Man. So when we found Tyrion in a small and dirty chamber, stripped of his titles and powers, I was shocked and upset. How could Tywin not recognize that Tyrion saved the city? Without Tyrion, King’s Landing would have fallen before Tywin showed up and we would have a Baratheon sitting on the Iron Throne [not that I’d mind, but where’s the fun in that?]

We all know what happened to the last two Hands of the King. Recap – one killed by mother, the other by son. What will that mean for Tyrion? We already know that Cersei hates him, and I think Joffrey would execute him if he slapped him one more time (you can see the slap at 44 seconds!). So, my third most anticipated moment of GOT Season 3 is finding out if Tyrion keeps his head. I sure do hope so, because I’d like to see Tyrion get back into the game. He was better at playing it than anyone short of Lord Varys, no pun intended. Tyrion is smart, savvy, and somehow manages to stay one step ahead of everyone. He’s even managed to keep Shae alive, despite Cersei’s attempts at her life.

I could probably write a novel about how much I love Peter Dinklage. Instead, I’ll keep it simple. Recall the scene where Tyrion made the decision to lead the charge against Stannis after Joffrey fled the battle. His script called for him to declare that he’d lead the charge one time. Instead, Peter decided to ad-lib with the second line – the first one quiet as if making the personal revelation that he’d do it, the second one firm asserting his power and confirming his choice. It was the perfect addition, and it captures everything I love about this actor as Tyrion. He is perfect.

So, what will happen to Lord Tyrion this season? Will he survive in King’s Landing? Will Cersei discover the real Shae? Can Tyrion return to his former glory or will he decide to leave it all behind and flee?

We do know that Tyrion owes Cersei. And I can’t wait to see him pay her back. And I’d bet we can count on that happening soon, since a Lannister always pays his debts.


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Countdown to GOT Season 3 – #10

In preparation for the highly anticipated HBO Game of Thrones Season 3 premiere on March 31st, I will be counting down by celebrating the 10 best quotes of season 2 and the most anticipated moments of season 3.

#10 Cersei Lannister – “The gods have no mercy. That’s why they are gods.”

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Ringing us in with #10 is Cersei Lannister, portrayed by the great Lena Headey.  I don’t know about you, but Queen Cersei is the queen that I LOVE to HATE.  She is murderous, cunning, sly, manipulative, and beautiful.  Queen Cersei is a woman who knows how to get what she wants.  She realizes that being in power is the key to wielding power, and she doesn’t let anyone stand in her way.  We learned that quickly in Season 1 as we saw Cersei demand for the death of Sansa Stark’s innocent direwolf, Lady.

What I enjoy most about Queen Cersei is her ability to seem vulnerable and weak, yet insanely powerful and devious.  Some of the best moments of GOT Season 2 are shared between Cersei and Tyrion.  Who can forget when Lena Headey’s Cersei painfully reminds Peter Dinklage’s Tyrion of the biggest joke that he ever played on her (by killing their mother in birth).  And for fans of the book, you know the best, or shall we say the worst, of Cersei is yet to come.  So, my 10th most anticipated moment of Season 3 will be to see Cersei do what she does best – desperately attempt to hold on to her power and rule King’s Landing in medieval style and grace.

Finally, I want to point out Lena Headey is a superb actress who should be recognized for her skill as Queen Cersei.  Lena breathes life into Cersei and manages to make a cruel villain appear multidimensional.  While she has proven to be cruel and vindictive, Cersei has also proven to be loyal to her family and to love her children above all things.  She reminds us that Cersei was wed to a man she didn’t love, and was shipped off to serve him as a piece in her father’s game.  While I can’t honestly say I will ever root for Queen Cersei, I will root for Lena Headey to continue to portray Cersei so magnificently, and to remind us that a “Lannister always pays her debts”.

So what are your thoughts? Do you love to hate Cersei as much as I do? What are you anticipating most for Game of Thrones Season 3? Do you have any favorite quotes from the first two seasons?