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TV Review:  Game of Thrones, “The Mountain and The Viper”

TV Review: Game of Thrones, “The Mountain and The Viper”

In this week’s episode of Game of Thrones, the jig is up for Ser Jorah, Theon plays a part, and the brothels of Kings Landing lose their best customer.  Let’s get to it. In dirty ole Mole’s Town, some of the Brothers of the Night’s Watch are having a bit of adult fun.  At one of the tables, one of the lovely “ladies” (Lois Winstone) is belching a tune.  (Yes, I’m serious.)  One of the Brothers takes a guess and yells, “The Rains of Castamere!”  Luckily, it’s the wrong…

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The Hound and Arya take a stroll

The Hound and Arya take a stroll

In this week’s episode of Game of Thrones, the jig is up for Ser Jorah, Theon plays a part, and the brothels of Kings Landing lose their best customer.  Let’s get to it.

In dirty ole Mole’s Town, some of the Brothers of the Night’s Watch are having a bit of adult fun.  At one of the tables, one of the lovely “ladies” (Lois Winstone) is belching a tune.  (Yes, I’m serious.)  One of the Brothers takes a guess and yells, “The Rains of Castamere!”  Luckily, it’s the wrong answer (and thank the gods, that song is just plain bad luck).  She tries again and one of the Brothers guesses correctly.  The talented woman is belching “The Bear and the Maiden Fair.”

After razzing one of the Brothers about his man parts, the Belcher walks over to Gilly and complains about Little Sam.  She tells Gilly to keep the baby quiet or she will.  Before they can get into it, Gilly hears a sound.  The Belcher thinks it’s an owl but Gilly knows better.  She looks outside just in time to see Tormund Giantsbane slit the throat of a water bearer.  The Wildlings attack Mole’s Town with ruthless precision, with Ygritte being especially vicious.  She kills anyone in her way and does it quickly.  The Belcher tries to be a hero, but Ygritte is still pissed off at Jon Snow.  The Belcher, she never has a chance.  Ygritte guts her good, then moves on.  Just then, she sees Gilly hiding with Little Sam.  They look at each other for a tense moment before Big Red puts her finger to her lips, silently telling Gilly to keep quiet.

At Castle Black, the news of the attack has reached Jon and the others, with poor Sam feeling guilty for leaving Gilly.  He believes that she and Little Sam have been killed, but the Brothers know otherwise.  They reassure Sam, telling him that his lady friend has survived Craster’s, a White Walker and a long, cold walk to the Wall.  They have no doubt that she survived the Wildling attack and will find her way back to Castle Black.  In the meantime, the Brothers have to prepare to defend the Wall and the Realm.  But with only a handful of Brothers to stand against scores of Wildlings, will any of them survive?

Grey Worm spies Missandei with both eyes

Grey Worm spies Missandei with both eyes

In Meereen, the buff Unsullied are bathing in the river.  Grey Worm is in the water when he notices a very naked Missandei across the way.  He stares at her like men who have all of their man parts do, which surprises the young lady.  But the surprise doesn’t last long, as Missandei slowly stands up so Grey Worm can see all of her.  They stare at each other for a moment before Missandei feigns modesty, covering her breasts.

Later, while having her hair braided, Missandei tells Dany about what happened at the river.  Khaleesi tells her Girl Friday about the Dothraki who made love in front of everyone without a care in the world (ah, good times).  But realizing that everyone is not as open and free as the Dothraki, Dany assures Missandei that Grey Worm is not interested in her due to his being castrated.  But we all saw how he looked at her, that Unsullied is interested!  Dany asks if the Unsullied are fully castrated or if they get to keep “the pillar and the stones.”  Missandei says she does not know, but I have a feeling she’s going to find out.

Later in the massive Throne Room, Grey Worm apologizes to Missandei for looking at her.  He says that her English lessons are very precious to him and he doesn’t want to mess that up.  Missandei asks him if he remembers being cut or his life before then and he says no, he only remembers being Unsullied.  She tells Grey Worm that she wishes he had never been made an Unsullied, but he tells her that if he had not, he never would have met her.  After that, Missandei says that she is glad he saw her, and he wisely answers, “So am I.”  And so is most of the viewing audience.

Reek formerly known as Prince Greyjoy

Theon formerly known as Prince Greyjoy

In the North, Ramsay Snow a.k.a. The Mad Man has prepared Theon/Reek to play his part in securing Moat Cailin.  The Mad Man has trained Theon/Reek to be what he once was, a Prince of the Iron Islands, to take the castle.  But Ramsay is crafty, scaring his poor pet to make sure he doesn’t betray him in any way.  Theon/Reek wouldn’t have been able to even if he tried.  When he rides to Moat Cailin, all he finds are a bunch of dead and almost-dead Iron Born.  He palavers with the men, letting them know that he is their Prince.

As proof, he tells the men of his father Balon, who bended the knee to Robert Baratheon.  Theon formerly known as Prince Greyjoy tells the men they should do the same and surrender to House Bolton.  He lies to them all, saying they will not be harmed and will be allowed to go home.  One of the Iron Born thinks Theon is talking rubbish, basically calling him a girl and spits in his face.  Theon’s alter ego Reek starts to make an appearance, but before he breaks down into a puddle of crazy, another Iron Born buries an axe in the spitter’s head and makes the deal.  His last words before Ramsay gets to him are, “If we yield, we live?”  The next thing we see is the same man turned into a bloody piece of nothing, thanks to Ramsay’s penchant for flaying.  The Mad Man was right; krakens are pretty dumb when they’re out of the water.

In the Eyrie, Lord Baelish is being questioned by Lord Royce (Rupert Vansittart), Lady Waynwood (Paola Dionisotti) and her son Ser Donnel (Alisdair Simpson) about Lysa Arryn’s death.  Lord Royce has no love for Lord Baelish, questioning his foreign blood and recognizing his talent for “licking Tywin Lannister’s boots.”  When Littlefinger claims that Lysa’s death was a suicide, Lady Waynwood says that although she was an “odd fish,” Lysa adored her son Robin and would never leave him by choice.  The Lady and Lords request a meeting with Lord Baelish’s niece, Alayne, who is really Sansa.  When she steps out, it looks like she’s going to spill the beans, but she surprises Petyr when she lies through her teeth about Lysa’s death.  Sansa puts on quite the show, convincing Lord Royce and Company of Littlefinger’s innocence.

Later, Lord Baelish discusses the need for Robin to leave the nest and learn how to be a man now that his overbearing mother is dead.  Robin, who has never left the Vale in his life, is understandably terrified.  But Littlefinger will have his way no matter what.  Just then, Sansa comes down the stairs dressed like the Vixen of the North.  Will Sansa’s new look come with a backbone?

Outside of the Bloody Gate, Arya and the Hound are making their way to the Vale.  Our Rebel is upset because she didn’t get to see Joffrey die (believe me Arya, it was something to see).  The two argue about the best way to kill a man, until they are stopped short by a guard on the road who tells them that Lysa is dead.  Both stand there with blank expressions on their faces, until Our Rebel bursts out laughing.  And why not?  Every time it looks like Arya will finally be with someone in her family, they’re dead before she can set foot through the door.  If only she knew that her sister is just beyond that gate.  What will happen to Our Rebel now?

In Meereen, Ser Barristan receives a letter from King’s Landing.  The letter turns out to be a pardon for Ser Jorah from Robert Baratheon for spying on Danaerys.  Unfortunately, that spying part is supposed to be a secret.  Ser Barristan shows the pardon to Ser Jorah, letting him know that Dany will know the truth and that he will never be alone with Khaleesi again.  In the Throne Room, Dany calmy demands to know why her friend received the pardon.  At first, Ser Jorah tries to get out of it.  But he is no match for the Mother of Dragons and spills all.  He wisely begs for her forgiveness, but his pleas fall on deaf ears.  Dany banishes Ser Jorah from Meereen, telling him that he has until break of day to leave.  In my opinion, he got off easy.  She could have easily gone all Targaryen and unleashed her dragons on his traitorous ass.  What will Dany do now that her trusted advisor is gone?

In the North, Roose Bolton meets with his crazy bastard son.  Ramsay tells his father that Moat Cailin is won.  Roose explains to his son that the North is larger than the other six realms combined and he will need help with its rule.  Roose then tells his son that he is no longer Ramsay Snow, but Ramsay Bolton.  The Mad Man kneels in front of his father, looking truly thankful for his name change.  I shuddered when Ramsay said that he would keep his father’s traditions, because although we haven’t seen it yet, Roose Bolton is almost as crazy as his son.  Here’s hoping the Seven look after the people in the North, for they are now being ruled by two psychopaths.

In King’s Landing, Tyrion and Jaime are having a chat before the trial by combat begins.  Halfman is visibly scared, wondering if Oberyn has a chance against the Mountain.  With no reassurance from his brother, Tyrion declares that he is going to die.  He asks Jaime what the penalty is for killing his nephew They talk about their cousin Orson Lannister, a simpleton who loved to smash beetles.  Tyrion says that he laughed at their cousin because it made him feel like he was just like everyone else.  But then he wanted to know why Orson was smashing the beetles, and became obsessed with finding out.  Tyrion tells his brother that he would have nightmares of him “standing on a beach filled with beetle husks, stretching as far as the eye could see.”  When Orson died, Tyrion was left with no answer to his question.  He then asks Jaime if he knows what it was all about.  Jaime says he doesn’t, and then the bells toll.  The trial by combat begins.

Prince Oberyn is with his love Ellaria drinking wine when Tyrion is led out.  Halfman is worried that his Champion’s light armor and lack of a helmet will get them both killed.  The Prince states that he will not die today and prepares.  The Mountain arrives, causing Ellaria to say, “You’re going to fight that?” to which Oberyn responds, “I’m going to kill that.”  Ellaria goes further, saying, “He is the biggest man I’ve ever seen.”  The Prince then replies, “Size does not matter when you are lying flat on your back,” to which Tyrion soberly, but humorously replies, “Thank the gods.”

Maester Pycelle begins his jargon, causing Tywin to have the hornblowers cut him off so the fight can begin.  Before he steps out for battle, Ellaria says to her love, “Don’t leave me alone in this world.”  Her lover says to her, “Never” and then the fancy footwork begins.  Who knew Oberyn could move like that?  He twirls and turns, flips and spins, showing us all that he knows how to wield a big stick.  During the fight, Oberyn goads the Mountain, telling him that he will hear his confession about the murder of his sister Elia and her children.  Over and over, Oberyn says to his opponent, “You raped her, you murdered her, you killed her children.”  The Prince gives Gregor a good fight, knocking his helmet from the Mountain’s head.  Gregor gets in some good shots, breaking Oberyn’s ash spear and knocking him to the ground a few times.  But the Prince of Dorne is faster and has vengeance on the brain.  He recovers from his fall and grabs a new spear, using more footwork to stick it in Gregor’s gut.  Cersei, who calmly watches the show at first, is visibly shaken when the Mountain is hurt.  But Oberyn is not done.  Again he shouts, “You raped her, you murdered her.”  He uses the spike on his spear to cut open Gregor’s calf, bringing the giant to his knees.  Then, before the final blow, Oberyn says, “You killed her children!”  The Prince runs towards his opponent, bringing the spear down hard into Gregor’s chest.  The Mountain is laid low, and both Tyrion and Ellaria are relieved.

But the Prince wants more.  He wants to hear Gregor confess to his crimes and to tell everyone who gave the order.  Oberyn doesn’t only want Gregor, he wants Tywin Lannister.  Instead of ending the fight there, Oberyn lets his rage at Tywin get the better of him.  He gets too close to the Mountain, who surprises the Prince and trips him.  Gregor grabs Oberyn by the throat and punches most of his teeth out of that beautiful face.  The big man rolls on top of Oberyn, pushes his thumbs into those fiery eyes and says, “Elia Martell.  I killed her children.  And I raped her.  Then I smashed her head in like this!”  I could try to describe what happened to Prince Oberyn’s head, but it may make me throw up.  So would describing the smile on Cersei’s satisfied face.

Tywin stands up and declares that the gods have spoken and sentences his son to death.  Is this the end of Halfman?  Will we ever forgive the show creators for killing off yet another beloved character?  And will the brothels of Kings Landing ever recover from this loss?  Stay tuned.

Game of Thrones airs on Sundays at 9 p.m. on HBO.


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About Writergirl2009

Writergirl2009 is a Paralegal by day, but wishes to release herself from the tedium of her daily life to write full-time. She loves writing about films, televisions shows, books, music or people on the New York subway, where she currently lives (in New York, not on the subway).