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Aurora Snow’s Game of Thrones: Season 4: Ep. 5 “First of His Name” Review

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**Spoiler Alert**

“Know your strengths, use them wisely and one man can be worth ten thousand.”

Obviously Lord Petyr Baelish was referring to himself when he said this. He makes it abundantly clear that there is no need for an army when you have his cunning. And he might be right. Not only was the devious little man responsible for Joffrey’s death, he set into motion several other deaths, deaths we haven’t thought about since the first season.

Sansa just can’t catch a break, she’s now tortured day and night by her Aunt. At night Sansa must endure her Aunt’s porn star like moans and during the day she has to fight off her crazy insecurities. At least we didn’t have to suffer through any awkward breastfeeding scenes (the kid is way past his toddler years, it’s high time he got off the boob). There’s only one reason Baelish is seducing Lady Arryn and it has little to do with lust or love. Baelish is a man who will do anything to get “everything.” I fear Sansa may have been better off married to Tyrion, at least he was a man of honor.

No mention of Tyrion this episode. He was sorely missed. Though I imagine the next time we see him, he should be on trial for killing his nephew. Cersei is adamant about his guilt and has already cleverly begun aligning herself with the judges of the trial. Cersei’s parent to parent appeal to Prince Oberyn may have hit the mark, though Oberyn strikes me as a fair man and not one to be easily swayed from the facts. While Cersei continues to mourn the loss of her first monster, she’s also started to focus on her two remaining children. In a surprising gesture of good will, Cersei acknowledges the wretchedness of Joffrey and Maegary Tyrell’s potential to be Queen with her blessing. Either Cersei’s dark heart is warming up, or she’s cooking up a diabolical scheme.

Seeing Tommen crowned as King creates yet another conflict: now who do we root for?

If it’s true and Tommen could be the best king the realm has had in over fifty years, then logically we should root for him. Not sure anyone was ever rooting for Stannis, though he has the most right to the throne. Daenery’s Targaryen however has quite the following. Who wouldn’t want to see her as Queen of the Iron Throne?! Yet I can’t root for her to overthrow sweet little Tommen. Technically Tommen, who’s blissfully unaware, has no claim to the throne since he’s a product of incest. Doesn’t change a thing for me. Still feeling #TeamTommen.

Fortunately, it’ll be awhile before we have to take sides. Daenery’s conquests have gotten out of line. When her army of unsullied moved on, the slavers went back to their old ways. Makes sense. Laws are only effective when they’re enforced which is what Daenery’s is just discovering. She must first learn how to govern these conquests before she can set sail for Westeros. Against the advice of her trusted advisors Daenery’s has stubbornly chosen to stay put and prove she can rule anywhere.

Brienne and Podrick make the most awkward duo. He’s a jumbling untrained squire, better at pouring wine than riding a horse while she’s a wannabe knight, a woman with the duty of a man. Both are honorable, likeable characters we want to see succeed. And since George R.R. Martin has a history of making his characters pay the price of honor I fear these two may not have long to live. Those who fight with honor on Game of Thrones, typically die or suffer in a gruesome way because of it.

If Jon Snow is to survive he’ll have to learn how to fight dirty sometimes as evidenced at the Crasters Keep brawl. Mutineer Karl Tanner mocked Snow’s honor and hammered his point home with all of his dirty tricks until he had Snow at the tip of his sword. Snow would have been a dead crow if it weren’t for one of Craster’s wives. All he has to do is follow Ghost’s lead (so happy to have Ghost back!). Kill the men that do you wrong and don’t look back.

Fighting isn’t about honor, it’s about conquest. Which is what Arya has been wrestling with. She’s a Stark, and therefore carries an innate sense of honor, and yet she’s killed enough to know that honor is a luxury she can’t always afford. The relationship between Arya and the Hound grows more complicated by the day. It’s hard to believe she still wants him dead when she could join forces with him and accomplish so much more. There’s that prevailing sense of honor again. Arya can’t see beyond her own sense of justice, he killed her friend and deserves to die, it’s that simple.

Frequent as it may be on Game of Thrones, not everyone takes a life lightly. Hodor certainly didn’t. Who murdered the back stabbing crow who tried to make off with Bran, was it Bran or Hodor? Perhaps it was both, Hodors body and Bran’s mind. It was a necessary evil and the man probably deserved it anyway.

Bran may be a cripple, but he isn’t helpless. I loved that he was the hero in this case, with a little help he was able to rescue his merry band of travelers. It was hard to watch Bran give Jon Snow the slip, but it was in the best interest of his journey. Snow would have insisted they never again be apart, he wouldn’t have understood why Bran had to continue on. But Bran has a bigger destiny, an old Weirwood tree is calling his name.

Overall this was an illuminating episode that tied the past into the present. It reminds us of where it all began and leads us to ponder where it will take us now. White walkers are coming, as is Mance’s army. Castle Black lacks the man power to protect the realm, but what will happen if they fail?

Aurora Snow Says

Episode Rating:

[Rating:4/5]

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