From the onset of Cersei’s scorched-earthed campaign against the Tyrells, especially, Margaery, we knew that there was no way that she was going to walk away unscathed. And so it happened. Not long after her victory of finally driving Margaery into a cell, which presumably was the most satisfying moment for our vengeful Cersei, she found herself locked into one too. This development was rather a tad too dire of Cersei, especially in an episode where we finally see Tyrion’s long-awaited meeting with Daenerys Targaryen. The desperate vibe from last week’s episode just kept going in this one too.
Things were still awful in Winterfell. A couple of dirtbag knights gave Samwell Tarly a vicious beating until Ghost got his back and Stannis pondered on an act of extreme cruelty. But, first, let’s go to King’s Landing, where the instigator of the Sparrow’s morality campaign became its victim. It would have been better for Cersei not to summon Littlefinger a 1000 miles away just to have a few minutes worth of conversation because he and Lady Olenna had already brought down the famous King Joffrey Baratheon. Now their fateful meeting in the ‘broken little flesh market’ of Littlefinger’s was just one domino in an entire chain that toppled Cersei from her seat as the Queen.
Our beloved queen had struck a devil’s bargain with a holy man because of fear and spite. In the Lannister incarceration department, we are now three-for-three as all three of them, i.e. Tyrion, Jaime and Cersei are in some sort of captivity currently. Tywin has done an excellent job at leaving a legacy as his kids are doing even better with their family name than he had hoped. Actually, each of his children shares some traits with the infamous Tywin Lannister. Cersei has inherited his ruthlessness while his battlefield valor is evident in Jaime.
As for Tyrion, he got the smarts, which are solely the reason why our favorite dwarf has kept himself alive throughout his great adventure in Essos. But, of course they are lacking something, just like every rich kid in the world, it is Tywin’s discipline. As a matter of fact, they have absolutely no discipline with Cersei’s and Jaime’s craving for each other and Tyrion’s lust for wine. A few weeks back, Cersei slammed Jaime for his tendency of not thinking before acting, but it seems that it is she who is not doing any thinking.
Clearly, she didn’t think when she decided to arm the Sparrows or maybe she only thought of how she could thwart Margaery and then pulled a trigger heedlessly. We all assumed that she was just driven by self-preservation and her malice towards Margaery as Tommen was making noises about sending her back to Casterly Rock. But a scene in this episode with the boy-king made it seem like a whole lot more. Clearly, Cersei is interested in protecting her own position, but she is aware that her boy is just a lamb, whether he is king or not, and the capital is full of wolves, including his power-hungry wife.
All season, Lena Headey has been great and once again she was sensational in her role of a desperate mother who is only trying to protect her son and the last pieces of her family. She told her king that he would sooner or later have to deal with circumstances that are beyond his control, regardless of how strong he is. The irony is that she didn’t know that the same applies to her because she doesn’t have much control of her circumstances either. The sobering fact for her, apart from being separated from her morning dose of wine, is that her sweet little lamb is her only remaining ally.
The title of Sunday’s episode was ‘The Gift’, which could be a reference to Tyrion whose long-awaiting meeting with the Dragon Queen is probably the first time that Daenerys Targaryen had directly encountered a member of one of the prominent families of Westeros (not counting Barristan and Jorah). We have waited for a long while for these branches to finally meet so it is better not to dwell on the implausible string of events that landed the Lion of Lannister in front of the Khaleesi. Instead, let’s speculate on how this will go forward?
Will Tyrion replace Barristan as the Queen’s new advisor? Will he figure out who the Son of the Harpys are? Is he going to ride a dragon or mentor Grey Worm? Will Tyrion bring about the end of Dany’s silly marriage to Hizdahr? Meanwhile, in Winterfell, horror is playing out.
Anyone who is watching Game of Thrones and is hoping for Theon’s redemption will have to wait, for another week at least. It had seemed that Reek would be shocked by Ramsay’s rape of Sansa on their wedding night and he would reclaim his humanity. That didn’t work as instead of responding to Sansa’s cry of help, he ratted her out to her new husband. Things certainly haven’t gotten any better for our beautiful Sansa with her being covered in bruises and all, but they have certainly taken a turn for the worse for the now freshly flayed Northern maid.
New week, new act of torture and degradation by the former Bastard of Dreadfort. We suspect Theon is eventually going to break, but we hope we won’t have to see more of Ramsay. Elsewhere, we come across the Red Priestess who is known to make terrible suggestions, but it seems that the fount of political sorcery and womb-smoke can slide lower. Melisandre advised Stannis to sacrifice his own daughter Shireen for ensuring his good fortune in the battlefield. This season has gone a long way towards redeeming Stannis’s dreary character and image.
In fact, a couple of weeks ago, a scene could have earned him the title of being the best father in Westeros. Could this all just be a setup for one of the most treacherous turns we have seen in this show? We can’t see it happening, probably because we don’t want it to. It is possible that it could eventually mark the beginning of the division between the Priestess and Stannis. Now, let’s go to Dorne where we see some serenading from the former half of Jerome and Robson.
Those who had been worried that the cut to Bronn’s arm last week could be something really bad were actually correct. Some sort of deadly blade poison had been used by Tyene, which was activated magically by the exposure of her breasts. Bronn came close to his end because of the lethal combo, but the Sand Snake gave him the antidote at the last minute. It seems that the writers are messing with us in a similar fashion as they toy with our anxieties through our flagging hopes that the Sand Snakes would become interesting and by bringing our beloved Bronn near his potential demise.
In some good news, Gilly didn’t become the latest victim of rape on the show, thankfully, as Sam saved her even though he was beaten within an inch of his life. In gratitude, Gilly took Sam’s virginity, being very gentle and nice with him. Are you looking forward to what’s going to happen next? Keep your fingers crossed.