I posted these rewatches on the old site, and am now reposting them here. The night is dark and full of spoilers
Episode title: First of His Name
Director: Michelle MacLaren
Written by: David Benioff & D.B. Weiss
Summary: Tommen Baratheon is crowned as King at his coronation. At the reception, Cersei and Margaery talk about Joffrey’s nature, and how Tommen may be a truly deserving King. In council with her father, Tywin, Cersei decides that Tommen and Margaery will marry in a fortnight. They also make plans for Cersei’s wedding to Loras Tyrell, and discuss how the gold mines underneath Casterly Rock have run dry. Tywin tells Cersei that the crown is deeply indebted to the Iron Bank of Braavos, and that the union of Lannister and Tyrell will help rectify this problem. In the gardens, Cersei speaks to Oberyn Martell about her daughter, Myrcella. She asks him to bring a ship back to Sunspear with him as a gift for Myrcella, which he obliges.
Littlefinger and Sansa, going under the name Alayne arrive in the Vale of Arryn. Lysa and Robin are aware of Sansa’s true identity, and has Robin show her to her chamber. When they have gone, Lysa expresses her desire to marry Petyr that day, and speaks of what she has done for him, including poisoning her previous husband, Lord Jon Arryn. In order to quiet her, Petyr agrees to marry her as soon as possible. At night, Lysa and Sansa talk about Catelyn, and how Petyr loved her. Their conversation grows tense, with Lysa accusing Sansa of having seduced Petyr, but is eventually convinced by Sansa that she is a virgin. Lysa tells Sansa that, once Tyrion has been executed, she will be married to Robin.
News of Joffrey’s death reaches Dany. At a meeting with her council, Daario Naharis announces that his forces have taken the Meereneese navy, and Daenerys expresses her desire to use the ships to invade Westeros. While her advisers are optimistic about her chances of seizing King’s Landing, Ser Jorah warns her that may not be enough to win the loyalty of the Seven Kingdoms. He also informs Dany that both Astapor and Yunkai have fallen back into old habits. Dany intends to rule Slaver’s Bay.
Brienne of Tarth and her squire, Podrick Payne, ride toward the Wall, believing they may find Sansa there with Jon Snow.
The Hound finds Arya training with her sword. He insults her swordplay, and challenges her to demonstrate her abilities by attacking him. His armor easily repels her jab and he knocks her to the ground, telling her that her fighting style is useless against armored opponents.
Locke scouts Craster’s Keep, and witnesses Rast beating one of Craster’s former wives. When he sneaks inside the encampment, he sees Bran and his group held captive in a small hut. When Locke returns to the group led by Jon, he tells them that they should strike soon, as the mutineers are drunk, and Jon informs his group that they will attack the Keep at sundown. Later, Karl enters the hut and moves to rape Meera, but, after a warning from Jojen, they are attacked by Jon’s group.
A battle ensues in which several mutineers are killed. Locke slips away from the fight unnoticed to see to Bran and his friends. As he cuts Bran’s ties and picks him up, Bran uses his warg abilities to enter Hodor’s mind, and pull free of his chains. Bran, using Hodor’s body, chases down Locke and kills him. Though Bran wishes to see Jon, Jojen tells him that Jon will try to stop his journey north, and the group departs the encampment unseen. Jon enters the Keep and fights Karl, and though he is injured in the fight, is able to kill Karl with the help of one of Craster’s former wives. While counting the dead, Edd notices that Rast is missing. Rast flees through the woods before being killed by Ghost, Jon’s direwolf. Jon asks Craster’s wives to come to the Wall, but they decline his offer, and the group burns Craster’s Keep and the bodies of the dead before departing.
My take: Belle: “Hodor is my vessel for ass-kicking.” I love Cersei stepping into frame when Margarey is making googily eyes at Tommen. I also like her kissing the asses of each of the judges. I brought you a gift, now throw it out the window. And poor Sansa realizes she has escaped one hell to find herself in another, Every scene between Arya and the Hound has been golden this season. When Craster’s wives/daughters were freed, Belle started singing “Unbreakable! They alive dammit!”
Changes from the books: The conversation between Tywin and Cersei does not occur in the books. Petyr has Sansa pose as his bastard daughter, not his niece. Petyr has Sansa dye her hair brown to hide her identity. Lysa married Petyr at his ancestral keep on the Fingers, not at the Eyrie. Lysa reveals she was the one to kill Jon Arryn and send the false letter to Catelyn, and that Littlefinger made her to that much later in the book, while she drags Sansa to the Moon Door. Marillion was also present when it happened. She also reveals that she once got pregnant by Littlefinger and that her father forced her to undergo an abortion. Lysa was much less joyful with Sansa in the books, seeing her mere presence as a threat to Robin since she is wanted by the Lannisters. Robin never refers to Petyr as “uncle” The character Locke is based on from the books, Vargo Hoat, was not killed by Hodor at Craster’s Keep. He stayed at Harrenhal and was captured by Gregor Clegane, who gave him a slow and gruesome death on Tywin Lannister’s orders.Ghost came back to Jon much later in the books, after the battle of Castle Black was over, and did not kill Rast. Rast was among the defenders of the castle, and was killed by a Thenn during the first stage of the battle.
Locations on the Map: King’s Landing, Dragonstone, the Dreadfort, Winterfell, the Wall, Meereen
Death Count: Locke, by Bran in Hodor’s body. Karl, by Jon. Rast, by Ghost. The mutineers, by the men of the Night’s Watch
Quotes: Sandor ‘The Hound’ Clegane: Your friend’s dead, and Meryn Trant’s not, ’cause Trant had armor. And a big fucking sword.
Cersei Lannister: Everywhere in the world, they hurt little girls.
Episode title: The Laws of Gods and Men
Director: Alik Sakharov
Written by: Bryan Cogman
Summary: Stannis and Davos arrive in Braavos, where they visit the Iron Bank, hoping to secure fonds to aid Stannis. They are made to wait long, leaving Stannis impatient. Finally, they meet with Tycho Nestoris who rejects Stannis’ request. Davos does not give up easily, and explains that Stannis is an honest man, and that Stannis is their best chance of getting back the money that was lend to King’s Landing. The Iron Bank agrees to support Stannis, and Davos is allowed to use it to hire his old pirate friend, Salladhor Saan, once more.
While Ramsay is having sex with Myranda, Yara and her troops arrive at the Dreadfort, scale the walls, and enter the castle, finding Theon in a cage. She opens the cage, but Theon refuses to come along, and resists in panic, fearing another trick from Ramsay. Ramsay and several Bolton men enter, and a fight ensues, with men on both sides dying. Theon bites Yara, and flees back into his cage. Ramsay releases the hounds, and Yara and her remaining men are forced to retreat. Yara orders the men waiting for her with a boat to take them back to the ship, and when asked about Theon, replies that “my brother is dead”. As a reward for staying loyal, Ramsay allows “Reek” to take a bath. Ramsay orders Reek to undress, and step into the water. He then assists in washing Reek, while telling Reek that he needs him to do something. There’s a castle, which is held by bad people, whom Ramsay needs gone, and therefore, he needs Reek to pretend someone he is not: Theon Greyjoy.
Outside of Meereen, a goat herder and his son are tending to their goats on a hill. The son is throwing rocks off the hill to pass the time, when Drogon suddenly appears. The dragon burns part of the flock and takes off with a goat. The next petitioner is Hizdahr zo Loraq, who is asked to be allowed to continue the tradition of burying his father in the temple of the Graces, reminding Dany that the masters are still outside, rotting in the sun. Daenerys allows him to bury his father, and Hizdahr leaves. While he does so, Daenerys asks how many more supplicants are waiting; Missandei answers that there are still two hundred and twelve left.
The small council holds a meeting, where Lord Varys informs those present that Sandor Clegane has been seen in the riverlands, where he killed five of the king’s men. Varys also heard whispers from the east, that Daenerys has taken Meereen and rules as its Queen. He lists Daenerys’ army, and reveals that Jorah Mormont is no longer spying for them.
Tyrion’s trial begins. Tyrion pleads innocence, for both himself and Sansa Stark. Several witnesses are called, including Ser Meryn Trant, who recalls how Tyrion slapped Joffrey during the Riot of King’s Landing and how Tyrion had reminded Joffrey about meeting the same fate as Aerys the Mad had, Grand Maester Pycelle, who lists all the poisons he had in his room, until Tyrion had stolen them upon Pycelle’s arrest. Pycelle confirms that it had been poison that had killed Joffrey, and shows the necklace Sansa had worn during the wedding, which had been found upon the body of Dontos Hollard. Pycelle says that the Strangler had been found in the necklace.
Cersei is the next witness, and she tells about the night of the Battle of the Blackwater, where Tyrion had threatened her, after she had threatened to kill Ros .Varys is next, and repeats how Tyrion had told Joffrey “perhaps you should speak more softly to me then. Tyrion asks Varys whether he has forgotten that he had once told Tyrion how, while Tyrion would not be remembered by history forsaving King’s Landing, Varys would not forget. Sadly, Varys tells him, he never forgets a thing.
The trial goes into recess for an hour, and Jaime goes to see Tywin. If Tyrion’s life is spared, he is willing to leave the Kingsguard. Tywin agrees immediately. When Tyrion is found guilty, according to Tywin, he has to plead for mercy, which Tywin will grant him by sending him to the Night’s Watch. Jaime will immediately depart for Casterly Rock, marry, and father children named Lannister. Jaime goes to speak with Tyrion. Jaime tells him about his deal with Tywin.
The trial continues, and the next witness is called: Shae. She testifies that Tyrion is guilty, and that Tyrion and Sansa had planned the murder together. Shae reveals that she had been Tyrion’s whore. At this point, Tyrion states he wishes to confess. He turns to the crowd, reminding him how he had saved them, stating he should have let Stannis kill all those in King’s Landing, to the disgust of the crowd. Tyrion then states he is guilty, but when asked “Do you admit you poisoned the King?”, the answer is no. He’s guilty of a crime far worse than that: being a dwarf. Angrily, Tyrion says he has been on trial his entire life for being a dwarf, and demands a trial by combat.
My take: We get our first look at the Titan of Braavos. Hey, there’s Mark Gaddis! How nasty must those baths be in Braavos? The only thing missing from the Yara scene is someone yelling “Run away!” And if they’re afraid of the dogs, why don’t they just kill them? And what’s up with Ramsey fighting bare-chested, and why couldn’t a single Ironborn toss a knife at him? Mace Tyrell is Tywin’s bitch.
Changes from the books: Shae’s surprise testimony does occur in the books, but her motivations are changed. In the books, the character is more cynical and does not care about Tyrion, and her motive for testifying against him in the trial was financial, Cersei having bribed her for her testimony. In the show, her motives seem more based on revenge, and hatred for being rejected. It is Kevan Lannister, not Jaime, who approaches Tyrion with the offer to join the Night’s Watch in exchange for a plea for mercy.Jaime never agrees to leave the Kingsguard and marry in order to have Tyrion spared. Jaime and Tywin never speak to each other again after Jaime decides to stay in the Kingsguard, as Tywin disowns him afterwards. Stannis’s deal with the Iron Bank occurs later in the books, after he has defeated the wildings beyond the Wall. He does not visit Braavos to negotiate with the Bank’s representatives. Instead, Tycho Nestoris comes to meet Stannis while he is attempting to take the North from the Boltons. The Iron Bank agrees to fund Stannis because the Lannisters, specifically Cersei, refuse to repay the gold they owe. Davos is not present at the meeting between Stannis and Tycho Nestoris.Stannis’ total troops are between 1500-2000 men in the books, more than half of them from House Florent. Davos never met up with Salladhor Saan in a Braavosi bathhouse. Greyjoy forces do not attack the Dreadfort to free Theon, but a similar scene occurs in the books just after the fall of Moat Cailin: to test Theon’s loyalty, Ramsay offers him a chance to return to Pyke with the rest of the ironborn, but Theon, knowing full well that this is merely another one of Ramsay’s tricks, chooses not to, and he sees he made the right choice when Ramsay flays the ironborn anyway. In the show, Theon fears that Yara’s rescue attempt is one of Ramsay’s tricks, and even if it isn’t, he outright refuses to go with her unless she kills Ramsay.
Nudity: a pair of whores with Salladhor and a few in the background. Myranda, who seems to have replaced Ros as the go-to girl for nudity
Locations on the Map: King’s Landing, the Dreadfort, Winterfell, the Wall, Braavos, Meereen
Death Count: Several Bolton men and Ironborn during the failed attempt to rescue Theon
Quotes: Tyrion Lannister: I did not kill Joffrey, but I wish that I had! Watching your vicious bastard die gave me more relief than a thousand lying whores