Even though it’s only the third episode, the writers have been consistently keeping the viewers interested. With the second episode being full of shock and suspense, it makes sense that the third episode is a little calmed down. But even with no major deaths or anything flashy, it still keeps the viewers interested. In “Breaker of Chains”, there was cannibalism, incest, and sexual harassment to the extreme. Talk about an interesting Sunday night. But what really grasped me this week was getting to see the true influence that Tywin Lannister has over everyone. We all know that he calls the shots behind the scenes, but we never got to see that. For most of the episode, we get to see him clean up the mess after Joffery’s murder and it’s very interesting to see how central to the plot he’s becoming.
The episode begins right where the last episode ended. We are still looking at Joffery’s purple face with Cersei screaming for Tyrion and Sansa’s arrest. They were able to arrest Tyrion immediately but Sansa disappeared instantly with Sir Dontos. He took her on a dinghy to a nearby ship- and Littlefinger. It feels so good to see our unpredictable pimp back in action. Right after Dontos put Sansa on the ship, Littlefinger had him killed instantly. Did I mention he was unpredictable?
We then shift to the clearly cursed twice widowed Margaery talking to the Queen of Thorns about how to keep her queen status. “You did excellent work with Joffrey. The next one will be easier,” she assures her.
The “next one” is Joffery’s younger brother, Tommen, who’s next in line. Tywin already makes it apparent that he will be king and needs to find a wife. What makes Tommen different from Joffery, besides not being an asshole, is that his first response to what a king needs is wisdom, something that Joffery rejected when he cut Tyrion’s wedding present in half. Tywin points out that this wisdom comes from listening to the counsel, his first step in manipulating his grandson. To further his “heart to heart” conversation with his grandson, Tywin leaves Cersei alone with her dead son only to be replaced with Jaime. Jaime helps Cersei mourn in the worst way possible by raping her in front of her dead son. There have a lot of different views on this particular scene. For me, it really changes my perspective on Jaime. I was really starting to feel sympathetic towards him (and perhaps even liking him a little) but this sudden change of character puts him back where we first met him in the very first episode. I knew that he loved Cersei and wanted to be with her after being captured for so long but this just seemed very out of place. Clearly the writers wanted the viewers to have some sort of sympathy for Cersei but that was the wrong way to go about.
Another adventure of The Hound and Arya takes place when they stumble upon a farm with a caring farmer and his daughter who offer them a place to stay and even a job to The Hound for some money. Instead of taking the job, he just hits the farmer over the head and steals all of his money. “They’ll be dead by Winter,” he says, “Dead men don’t need silver”. Arya will soon learn the harsh reality of the phrase “Life just isn’t fair”.
Across the sea at Dragonstone, Stannis Baratheon is mourning the death of the king by celebrating. He thinks he is responsible for Joffery’s death due to Melisandre’s magic. However, his excitement quickly fades when he realizes that he has no way to take advantage of the situation due to the lack of men from the Battle of the Blackwater. He won’t even budge at Davos’ suggestion of using sell-swords to fight. Davos is quick to point out the irony by mentioning that he is willing to use blood magic to take the throne but not pay men to do it. But even if he wanted to do it, the bigger issue is that Stannis is completely broke. But Davos’ plan to take advantage of the Lannister debts to make the Iron Bank support Stannis seems like a flawless idea, right? The phrase “A Lannister Always Pays His Debts” will be especially important when this plot picks up.
But where Stannis is worried about money and Tywin is worried about politics, there are people like Prince Oberyn who only worry about how many people they can have sex at once. When Tywin walks in on him with four other naked people in his bed, he gives him an option to be the third judge at Tyrion’s trial, a strategic move when dealing with one of the biggest Lannister family haters. Tywin also offered Oberyn an advisor position in the King ’s Counsel. Whatever Tywin is planning, he seems to have won over the revenge filled prince pretty easily.
Across the wall, we see the uglier side of the wildings when they completely destroy an innocent village and its people- all except one boy. They nicely tell him they’re going to eat his dead parents and sent him to Castle Black as a warning for what’s coming to them. Ygritte doesn’t seem to be so sympathetic either. In other news of bad wildling relationships, Sam tries to keep Gilly safe from his fellow brothers by having her work in a nearby hotel. However, she also seems to be discriminated there as well because of her “title”. We know that Sam isn’t too good at combat but, unsurprisingly, it seems that he is not too good with women either.
We then see poor Tyrion behind bars awaiting his fate. His loyal squire, Pod, comes in and tells him that not only is his trial in a fortnight but that he was asked to testify against him. Tyrion makes him swear not to get involved and run away or he will be killed for being loyal to a “murderer”. With Shae and Pod both gone, Tyrion’s allies are are getting slimmer and his trial’s outcome doesn’t look too good from here.
Daenerys ends the show with one of her legendary speeches when she finally gets to Meereen. After a very insulting greeting from their “champion”, Daenerys lists off her impressive resume of the previous cities she’s won over. If we know Daenerys at all, we know that we’re going to be in for a show.
Rating: 9/10 stars