Last night’s massive deviations from the original material will keep anyone who’s read the books on their toes. “OathKeeper” broadens the gap between the HBO show and the books, particularly where Bran Stark’s storyline is concerned. Instead of embarking on a soul searching excursion (like he did in the book) Bran and his friends have been captured by mutineers at Crasters Keep. With his true identity revealed Bran is now at the mercy of some very devious men. Coincidentally Jon Snow is currently on his way there seeking justice for his murdered Lord Commander. Will this be a happy family reunion for the Stark boys? For once, no fan knows. Book readers have lost their edge, we’re now just as anxious about what’s to come as everyone else.
If you can forgive Jamie for last week’s digression, this may be his most likeable episode yet. With the rape scene all but forgotten, conditions between Cersie and Jamie seem no worse for the wear. While Jamie is becoming someone to root for, Cersei is as cruel as ever. She’s determined to see Tyrion beheaded for a crime he didn’t commit. A crime Jamie now believes he had no part in.
Still stuck in a dungeon, Tyrion’s scenes are limited to witty bits of dialogue and not much more. If anyone can captivate an audience from a dirty cell it’s Peter Dinklage. For the first time he openly acknowledges Jamie as Joffrey’s father and confirms his suspicions. His opinions about his siblings are set so this acknowledgement changes little. In a surprisingly brusque manner, Jamie glosses over it while also brushing off Tyrion’s appeal to help him escape. To which Tyrion replies, “Sorry I forgot, I’d hate for you to do something inappropriate.” I couldn’t help laughing at this perfectly timed bitter line delivered to the hypocrite.
Jamie has grown considerably since the first season. I feel this new and improved version would no longer push a child out a window (as he did to Bran). He is developing a sense of honor, one that’s fully realized when he gifts Brienne with his sword and a mission. Brienne has been the inspiration for this new version of Jamie, with her gone will he continue to be likeable? I am curious to see how Brienne’s adventure aligns with the book. I imagine for the sake of casting and to cut down on characters her story will change as did Bran’s.
Meanwhile Littlefinger, the real criminal, has gallantly whisked Sansa away on the pretense of protecting her but he’s just another predator. His true intentions for her have yet to be revealed though the way he dances around the subject worries me. Littlefinger always had a thing for Sansa’s mother, and since he couldn’t have her will he really settle for Sansa’s crazy aunt in the Vale or he is really after Sansa? Regardless he’ll soon be married to Sansa’s aunt, Lysa Arryn. If you don’t remember Lysa, she’s the woman who was still breastfeeding her seven year old son. It’s hard to forget a thing like that.
Ambition makes people do crazy things. Lady Olenna cops to having a hand in Joffrey’s demise, but only to her granddaughter. That’s one family secret that can never be told. Lady Olenna knows exactly how to play the game of thrones. Under her guidance the Tyrells are sure to rise. Prompted by her grandmother’s suggestions, Margaery Tyrell finagles her way into the future king’s bed. (No challenge for the likes of Natalie Dormer, what boy wouldn’t want her?). While too young to consummate a marriage (or is he?), Tommen may be the best match for Margaery yet. Her first husband was gay, her second was a sadist, and while Tommen is but a boy, he is kind, gentle and apparently heterosexual. If you were paying close attention you may have noticed that Tommen has been recast this season as Dean-Charles Chapman. We saw so little of the young Lannister in previous seasons the recasting might go unnoticed.
Still on a quest to make her way west, Daenarys is out to prove she can be as ruthless as she is kind. Her heart is open to those that have been oppressed and her fury unleashed on their oppressors. For each child that was nailed to a post, there is now an oppressor. Daenarys is making a bold statement for all to see about her Yunkai conquest. The problem with vengeance is its ability to produce an endless cycle, one act leads to another infinitely until one side ceases seeking payback. In the case of Daenarys I fear she may have kicked the hornets’ nest of retribution.
The biggest surprise came at the very end, (again having read the series) I’d assumed babies were torn limb to limb while White Walkers feasted on their flesh. But it’s more complicated than that. Instead babies are turned into one of them presumably growing up to replenish their army. Meaning Craster was their best supplier. Now that they’ve taken their last baby boy, how will they react when the babies stop coming? Will the White Walkers converge on Crasters Keep around the time Jon Snow arrives? The possibility for an epic battle is around the corner.
In case you missed it (I almost did), another porn star made her mainstream debut in GoT. Keep your eyes peeled during the Crasters Keep scenes and you should be able to spot the Australian actress, Aeryn Walker. She is one of Crasters many buxom wives manhandled by the mutineers. I had to re-watch the scene, I had her narrowed down to one of two girls and then the credits confirmed her appearance. I admire the lengths to which GoT goes to cast appropriately. Plus it’s always fun to play “spot the porn star.”
Overall another first class episode, but not quite as enthralling as its predecessors.
Aurora Snow Says