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Game of Thrones: "The Old Gods and the New" Recap

Before we get started with this week’s recap, let me address the spoilers that have been rampant in the previous recaps. First, let me steal from Alan Sepinwall:

And finally, my attempt to keep these comments free of book spoilers has been mostly successful, but some people just don’t seem to get it, or care. Once again, let me remind you of the spoiler policy as it relates to this show: we are here to TALK ABOUT THE TV SHOW AS A TV SHOW, AND NOT AN ENDLESS SERIES OF COMPARISONS TO THE BOOKS. If you want to talk about things from the books that haven’t yet appeared on the show — whether they are plot points, characters we haven’t met yet, still-to-be-explained motivation, etc. — please do so in the message board topic I set up for this episode. I don’t care how clever or oblique you think you’re being: NO BOOK DISCUSSION IN THE COMMENTS. PERIOD. Anything even vaguely over the line gets deleted, and if anyone notices a comment before I do, feel free to email me.

We don’t have message boards at TBL per se, if you click on this gif you’ll be transported to a magical post within a post where you can talk about all the spoilers you want. If you have read the books and want to discuss that kind of stuff, go there. If you haven’t read the books, do not click. Seem fair? I will be adopting Sepinwall’s spoiler rules. You can e-mail spoiler complaints to alumnigonzo@gmail.com or tweet @CRM_Stephen. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.

Onto a very tense episode of Game of Thrones.

Theon – As a Greyjoy, Theon has the genetic makeup of a dickhead. I don’t know if Theon can qualify as the best or a favorite character, but he’s quite an interesting guy. He’s betrayed the family that raised him so the family that let him go will love him. He’s leading a bunch of men who don’t respect him and I can’t believe taking over a castle run by a 10-year-old paraplegic is going to inspire that much confidence. In the end, the kid, his brother and a half-wit escape with a Wildling because more than anything, Theon is just a horny teenager who can’t deal with peer pressure. And he wields a sword like an amateur. Ned Stark could take a man’s head clear off with one swing. Theon was like a drunken child hacking a pinata.

Bran – The scene where Theon explains to Bran that he has taken the castle is almost cute – if Theon wasn’t such an ungrateful dick. You can see Theon kind of struggle with Bran’s simple questions of, “Why?” to ever stupid thing he says.

Osha – Everything she does in this episode makes sense – except for the part where she doesn’t kill Theon. I’m glad she was able to escape with Bran and Rickon (and Hodor!), but why didn’t she kill Theon? He could have easily woken up and seen her leaving and stopped her. She’s obviously willing to kill. This is going to come back and bite her in the ass. What the heck are Osha, Bran and crew going to do out in the wilderness with Theon’s men looking for them? The fact that they left Winterfell makes me think that Robb’s men will get there before Theon’s sister’s men.

Arya – Our favorite needle-bearer is safer and yet more vulnerable than ever. While she’s safe as Tywin’s cup-bearer and has her own personal assassin, she’s also too smart for her own good. Tywin seems to like her, but I also don’t buy that he buys all her bullshit. And she goes sprinting through the prison camp way too often and often runs into people. It’s also not clear whether or not Baelish recognized her. Baelish seems like the type who wouldn’t miss something like that. We shall see.

Ja’quan Hagar – I took some flack last week for not giving Arya’s personal hitman any attention. Hagar was on camera for about 15 seconds and he did all his wetwork off-camera, but he has proven very valuable. Also, I love any scene where a door opens and a dead guy falls to the ground.

Cersei - What an ungrateful bitch. Tryion sends her daughter away to protect her and she’s mad about it. I hope that Ned Stark contracts the White Walking Dead virus, comes back to life and kills Cersei. Related: I’m very, very worried for Shae.

Sansa – Being beaten and nearly raped is what… Sansa’s 100th final straw? The only possible reason she’s sticking with Joffrey is so she can beat him to death on their wedding night, right?

The Hound – Do not fuck with The Hound or anyone he has sworn to protect. Or apparently has a soft spot for, since he went and saved Sansa without being asked. Also, if you’re going to attack The Hound with a rock, don’t hit him in the chest.

Joffrey – He deserved this one. And the cow pie.

Tyrion – Will “Did my hand fall from my wrist” become the new “What did the five fingers say to the face?” I doubt it, but Gods be good it is awesome to see Tyrion slap Joffrey. It should happen once an episode and then they should release all the outtakes.

Robb Stark – The King in the North has serious game, ya’ll. Unfortunately, he’s still scheduled to marry one of those bridge people. Might as well be forced to marry someone from Ohio.

Talisa – It is entirely possible that Robb’s crush is actually a Lannister spy. That dialogue was a little two on the nose. I don’t trust her, but I do hope Robb continues to run game for obvious reasons. Like you’ve never wondered what Charlie Chaplin’s granddaughter looks like naked.

Qarth – If Cam from Modern Family lived in Qarth and was a spice importer/exporter, he would be The Spice King. And hats off to whoever decided that Xaro Xhoan Daxos would be pronounced “Zarozan Ducksauce.” And how many times is Ducksauce going to tell us he had nothing when he arrived in Qarth? I’m guessing the quickest way to amass a fortune in Qarth is to beat a dead horse.

Jon Snow – First of all, why doesn’t he have a hat? Does his emo hair keep him that warm? He should have a hood or something. Also, he’s a horrible girl executioner, which leads to a chase scene and some hilarious spooning. That’s dirty pool Ygrette. You have to wonder if she’s trying to take advantage of Jon so she can get away during the night or if maybe she kind of likes him because he didn’t chop off her head. Also, when she hits Jon and runs away, she puts her hood on which should be considered a “reverse-Bryce Harper.” Will Jon Snow fall for the Gingerling? Fun fact: Ygrette was also in Downton Abbey. She’s dominating Sundays.

Dany – Speaking of beating a dead horse, how many times can Dany sternly proclaim that she is “Daenerys Stormborn of House Targaryen, of the blood of old Valyria blah, blah, blah.”

Dany’s Dragons – Who is the cloaked stranger. I’m guessing it’s that weird wizard twin guy. Whoever it is, I bet when she finds out the dragon-napper is going to get quite the “I am Daenerys Stromborn” speech.

Reminder: Please go to the other portion of the post to discuss the books. I think it will make everyone happier.

Previously: Game of Thrones: “The Ghost of Harrenhal” Recap
Previously: Game of Thrones: “Garden of Bones” Recap
Previously: Game of Thrones “What is Dead May Never Die” Recap
Previously: Game of Thrones: “The Night Lands” Recap
Previously: Game of Thrones Recap: “The North Remembers”
Previously: Game of Thrones Epic First Season

 

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