This week’s Game of Thrones is primarily about the Stark children. Jon Snow makes his way to Craster’s Keep and has a family reunion (but not the one you might want or expect). Sansa arrives at the Vale and learns that there’s nothing worse than a jealous aunt and Arya learns that armor is a good idea.
We also see yet another delay in Daenery’s eventual invasion of King’s Landing and Cersei making the rounds to ensure that her brother is convicted of regicide.
The Battle of Craster’s Keep
I’ll start with the end of this episode. Jon Snow and his rangers find Craster’s Keep, with Locke doing recon and finding Bran. Jon and his men attack the Night’s Watch rebels, which gives Locke time to try and kidnap Bran, hoping to bring him back to Roose Bolton.
The bad news is that Bran wargs out and mind melds with Hodor, resulting in the totally bad-ass scene where Hodor rescues Bran and snaps Locke’s neck. Hodor saves the day!
It looks like we finally have a Stark family reunion with Bran and Jon, but no. Jojen Reed convinces Bran that Jon will want to take him back to Castle Black, but they need to keep going north to find the three-eyed raven and the Magic Tree. So Bran chooses to walk away with Jon unaware of how close he came to one of his brothers.
Meanwhile, the battle rages on and Jon Snow faces off against Karl. Thanks to a distraction from one of Craster’s wives, Jon is able to jam his sword through Karl’s head in a truly horrifying tableau.
At the end of the day, they burn Craster’s Keep, Rast is killed by a direwolf and Jon is finally reunited with Ghost. I guess that makes it a happy ending.
Cersei’s New Plan
Now that Joffrey’s death is behind her, Cersei wastes no time trying to get Tyrion convicted with a series of conversations with hidden agendas.
Tommen is crowned king and Cersei wastes no time revealing that she’s actually on board with Margaery Tyrell marrying yet another one of her sons. Cersei’s seal of approval is clearly meant to sway the first judge, Margaery’s father.
Cersei also agrees to marry Loras in two fortnights while talking to her father, an attempt to curry his favor in convincing Tyrion since he’s the second judge. During the chat, Tywin reveals to Cersei that the marriages to the Tyrell family are important for their money, because the Lannister’s gold mines have been dry for three years and they have no other way to pay back the Iron Bank.
Cersei also gets close to the third judge, Oberyn Martell, by bonding over their love for their daughters. While it’s never addressed, it’s obvious that all of Cersei’s scenes this week were designed to get the three judges on her side.
Sansa’s New Home
Littlefinger brings Sansa to the Vale to meet her Aunt Lysa and cousin Robin. At first it seems nice that Ned Stark’s eldest daughter is finally reunited with family, but then we learn the true depths of Littlefingers treachery. Not only did he mastermind Joffrey’s assassination, but he also convinced Lysa to poison and kill her own husband many years ago. Lysa is bat-poop crazy in love with Littlefinger, and he clearly knows it and is using her for his own purposes.
The two quickly get married and Lysa’s loud screams of passion on their wedding night make for a moment more awkward and uncomfortable than when we saw her breastfeeding her not-so-young son.
Things get even worse when Lysa talks to Sansa and, at first, they simply chat about Catelyn and reminisce about her. Then Lysa gets angry and accuses Sansa of having sex with Littlefinger. Lysa is insanely jealous and paranoid, but Sansa convinces her that nothing has happened. With that settled, Lysa comforts Sansa and explains that soon she’ll be able to marry Robin and become a lady of the Vale. Eww, being married to Tyrion was definitely better.
Arya and the Hound
Arya’s list of people to kill is longer than ever (though she’s unaware that there’s no need for Joffrey to still be on it) and she has no problem telling the Hound that he’s on her list too.
She also practices the water dancing that Syrio Forel taught her back in season 1, but the Hound teaches her a more valuable lesson: armor is important.
Brienne and Podrick
Brienne and Podrick are on the road to Castle Black, assuming that Sansa will go there to be with her brother, Jon Snow. Their wacky adventure includes Pod burning a rabbit because he doesn’t know how to cook, which I’m pretty sure is a scene from the sitcom version of Game of Thrones.
Though Brienne doesn’t respect him at first, he earns it when he tells the story of how he killed a member of the Kingsguard during the Battle of Blackwater to save Tyrion’s life.
Daenerys learns about Joffrey’s death and, thanks to all of the ships from Meereen, she’s ready to sail across the Narrow Sea and take King’s Landing. FINALLY!
But not so fast. It turns out all of those cities she freed like Yunkai and Astapor have been reclaimed by the slave masters. It’s nice of her to free these slaves, but obviously she didn’t have a reconstruction plan in place. As such, Dany decides that she can’t be a good leader for the Seven Kingdoms if she can’t maintain order in the cities she’s freed, so she’s sticking around to clean up her mess.
Sigh. Dany is never going to make it to King’s Landing at this rate.
(Image courtesy of HBO)