The award for badass Episode #1 goes to The Laws of Gods and Men. The episode begins with Stannis Baratheon, on a boat (to bravos). He wishes for the Iron Bank to fund him to retake the Iron Throne. With the help of Sir Davos, he makes a plea. A very petty one, when the bank recall the terrible situation that Stannis actually is in. Lack of men and boats… a backing does not look in his favour. Regardless, his honesty and past victories do. With the help of Sir Davos, he gets his loan. Overall, it looks good for Baratheon fans. For the time being anyway.
Fans then see another ship. So many ships in this episode. This one is Black Wind, which belongs to Yara(Asha) Greyjoy. We see her on her way to rescue her brother. Her speech is inspiring and her raid into the Bolton keep even more so. It’s a shame we haven’t seen her so far this season, but the time differences actually make sense chronologically. With the remaining torture and other events that unfolded in the Game of Thrones universe. When Yara is reunited with ‘Reek’ I feel such sympathy, that she couldn’t save her brother. It shows the true extent of Ramsays’ torture. More mentally than physically. ‘Reek is Good’ and he doesn’t want to leave, (out of fear). With the one person alive, that truly cares for him. What’s interesting, is that the show doesn’t represent how evil Ramsay is. If anything the show goes easy on him, when showing the torture which is endured.
An example, that made me cringe, was that Ramsay didn’t just peel the skin off one of Theons’ fingers, but all of them. Very slowly and very painfully. Regardless, I think Iwan Rheon does an amazing job, with the character. The physical and mental torture is still ridiculously apparent and portrayed well.
Poor Yara. Having to abandon her brother, although she did claim her brother is dead, it is true the man that she last met is no more. Being an Iron Born warrior her pride would have been wounded. As well as, having actual love for Theon. It must have made leaving very difficult. No one can say she didn’t fight, as much as she could. I do love the female empowerment in this series, it is present in so many ways.
Fans wait so long for the TV appearance of Dragons, the re-introduction in this episode couldn’t have been more perfect. It develops more, for the fact that Daenerys will and is losing control of her dragons. The fact that the innocent (in this case the shepherd) will get hurt on her road to power. I feel it’s worse for her, since they are so close and come personally to her as a Queen. Not as just stories far way, which are less personal.
I thought it was quite funny the amount of Titles Daenerys is now introduced with. Danearys Stormborn, First of Her Name, Queen of the Andals and the First Men, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Breaker of Chains, Mother of Dragons, The Unburnt Mhysa. (what a mouthful). You can see the fact that she has to deal with so many of her subjects’ requests, is exasperating for her. Especially, when she has to compromise her own beliefs. When it came to the burial of The Masters.
Then back to Kingslanding. The Small Council never looked so funny, Oberyn, Varys, and Mace Tyrell are just 3 conflicting characters I can back as a comedy trio. When it comes to talk of The Hound and Varys straight out says ‘Fuck The King’ I couldn’t stop smiling such a calm demeanor and Tyrells obvious shock. Forgot the Master of Whispers, he is the master of disguise. That is until Oberyn begins his questioning. Then some home truths really do begin to be revealed. I especially loved his questions on sexuality and origin. It makes sense Varys is asexual, he lives for secrets and the realm. He is a Game of Thrones priest more than anything.
Jorah Mormonts’ crimes are revealed in a meeting of the Small Council. Although his treachery to Daenerys have been hinted at for a while. Through Varys’ little spiders it has now finally been confirmed in such a casual way, fans may have to watch twice to ensure they heard correctly. Now, if this comes out to Dany that one of her ‘dearest friends’ had treacherous intentions, the implementations could be phenomenal.
Despite this, nothing could beat Tyrion Lannister in this episode. He is finally on trial. Every word, every friend, every threat made is brought out against him. I think he was grateful when Tommen stood down to leave the trial, he is his nephew, the one he actually cares about, it also keeps him pure in a sense. Tommen has and will continue to have no blood on his hands. Speaking of care, his most loving brother Jaime sacrifices everything he stood for. His Oath to the Kingsguard, his once love for Cersei and any real power in the capital. All to return to Harrenhal and marry. Mainly to carry on the family name and partially save Tyrion. This would fulfill Tywins ultimate goal in life, well the ultimate goal he leads others to believe he has. He may have done many things wrong, but Jaime truly is close to full redemption for his crimes.
No matter what was said even Varys testifying against Tyrion nothing could beat the return of Shae into Tyrion’s life. This appearance by her and personality is much more like the book character. More motivation by selfish means and the desire for money. Many may hope that she is speaking the truth to save her own life but I don’t believe it for a second. Her testimony of her and Tyrions’ most intimate moments. Followed, by lies and hate is the final breaking point for Tyrion.
Peter Dinklage at his best
It is at that point Peter Dinklage stole the episode. His mental breakdown and confessions of the hate for Joffrey, his family and basically the whole of highborn westeros was truly enthralling. A man whose greatest weapon was his mind was finally broken with it the demand of a trial by combat. The greatest question I think now to be asked is. Who will his champion be. If it is Jaime which side will he choose?