Previously! In this episode: Tyrion has a joke that flops, Melisandre tries a joke that also fails, but Lord Freaking Petyr Baelish gets the last damn laugh.First, it has to be said: Oberyn Martell can get it. By “it” I mean me. SPOILERS START HERE. Hey remember how I was all excited about how we realized just how dangerous Baelish is? Remember how freaked out I was by Lysa and wanted her and Bad Boob Sucker Robin to take a trip through the Moon Door? REMEMBER THOSE DAYS? [Why wasn’t the Eyrie in the damn opening map??]
Before I lust over Oberyn, let’s talk about the big honking awesome that wrapped this ep., by which I mean Baelish’s chosen sigil. Mockingbirds have no call of their own – their calls, their language consists of bits and snippets of other birds’ calls.They’re fearless and will defend their territory against much larger, much more dangerous prey. They are perfect mimics – we had one outside our house that could perfectly imitate my daughter yelling at her brother. Drove me nuts thinking they were fighting. Nope. ‘Twas the Mockingbird, making noise to get the cat away from his nest/mate. Protecting his own no matter what.
Sneaky, clever bastards. They’re so, so clever and are ultimate survivors. Awesome, GRRM. So awesome.But we open with Tyrion and Jaime in the prison cells.
Jaime: Are you fucking kidding me with this trial by combat stuff?
Tyrion: J/K! I mean, J/K about just kidding.
Jaime: Wow, I had this all planned! You’re a dick.
Tyrion: Am I? I do believe our father – who orchestrated everything happening to me – is the dick who dicks.
Jaime: That doesn’t even make sense!
Tyrion: Shut up, sister-fucker.
Jaime: WOW DUDE I AM LITERALLY YOUR ONLY FRIEND. Also, you know I can’t fight for you, right? For multiple reasons?
Tyrion: You can’t? Crap. Well, fetch me my man-at-arms, Bronn. A good witty joke, a promise for getting laid and a handful of gold and he’ll do it for me.
Jaime: Uh… you sure about that?
Tyrion: Of course! We’re best friends! He can kill any man!
Jaime: Well…it’s Not Any Man he’d be fighting.
CUT TO: Not Any Man stabbing a dude and hoisting him into the air.Uh oh. And there’s a line of poor sots who are basically waiting to be used as a sort of medieval batting practice for this giant of a Not Any Man. The slaves? Whoever they are, they ask for mercy. Aha ha ha. HAHAHA. There will be no mercy. There will, however, be a Cersei, who is the person who personally requested Gorilla Guy.
Cersei: Gregor Clegane! [Me: OH MY GOD] You’re chopping through those poor folks like they were butter on a hot summer day. Good form.
Clegane: ME KILL GOOD. ME KILL MORE. MOUNTAIN HUNGRY FOR BLOOD.
Cersei: [simpers] Charming.
Enter the Hound and Arya continuing along to the Eryie when they spot a burned down hut. Upon investigation, they find an old man sitting on the ground, slowly and painfully dying. Why didn’t he kill himself? Because, eesh, that has to suck, the whole guts slowly putrefying and then you dying in agony from it thing.
Well, that would require the old man to end his own life. But life is a bit of a habit, innit tho? Nothing is worse than this, this agony, this life bleeding out of him. And Arya, who has grown four decades over the past few episodes, wisely says, “Nothing isn’t better or worse than anything. Nothing is just nothing.”
Damn, Arya. She wears black on the outside ’cause black is how she feels on the inside. Must have had a third helping of Nihilism with breakfast. :(
She tells him who she is, Sandor says he’s her captor, and they’re off to make a trade. The old man admires that – fair exchange. It’s how things should always be: this for that. Balance. But there isn’t balance anymore, is there? He asks for a drink. Sandor shares his water then stabs the man through the heart. Restoring a little balance. The man smiles at him and dies.
As he wipes off his blade, he tells her “that’s where the heart is. That’s how you kill a man.” And some dude who didn’t listen to that helpful lesson on how to end a life jumps on Sandor’s back like a deranged gnat with a yell and a neck bite. BRO THAT IS NOWHERE NEAR HIS HEART, PAY ATTENTION.
Clegane easily snaps his neck, but the gnat took a chunk out of him. Oho, and the gnat had a buddy, who emerges to give exposition on the Lannister’s price on Clegane’s head, and to be revealed as the nasty from the Lannister’s Cart o’Harrenhal Rejects, and then lastly to be stabbed straight in the heart by Arya once she’s learned his name after Sandor asks him for it. (That’s the velvet rope to her kill list, of course.)
Awesome. Arya getting her revenge is one of my favorite things. The joy of life is slowly bleeding from her eyes with every passing day. Nothing is worse than this. But then, after this? Nothing.
Jon’s band of Rangers return to Castle Black only to have Lord Sourface Von Butthurt immediately be a shit to him and his Direwolf puppy. Jon rolls his eyes but leads Ghost off to safer places – I assume a horse pen since that’s about the size of him. Jon then retells what happened at Craster’s, reminds them that Mance is coming, and is sneered at by Lord Butthurt and his sidekick, Captain Yeah, Boss!
Jon has lives to save, though. So let’s block up the tunnel door and gate and be smart. You know, strategize a bit?
Lord Butthurt: NO. MY EGO IS IN THE WAY OF RATIONAL THOUGHT
Jon: Yeah, I’ve noticed. Don’t you want to win?
Lord Butthurt: Yes. Against you. [holds hand out for high five]
Capt Yeah, Boss: [high fives] Good one, Boss!
Lord Butthurt: [preens] We’ve stood strong here for thousands of years.
Jon: [mutters] Oh, so you want that to end on your watch. Gotcha.
Jon tries to explain about Giants, all sorts of things coming, but these guys have their heads so far up their asses they’re kissing their own tonsils. Tale as old as time: pride and ego standing in the way of winning and good leadership.
Bronn comes to visit Tyrion in his cell, dressed in his fines. Huh, where did those come from? Oh, Cersei, Bronn explains. Got a wife waiting, planning on killing her sister so my new wife inherits a wad of cash, get me a castle… Can you double down on that?
Tyrion can’t. But…they’re friends? Bronn is genuinely sad things are turning out as they are, but he makes an excellent point: he’s put his life on the line for Tyrion, because they’re friends. But when has Tyrion put his life on the line for Bronn? Yeah, that’s what Bronn thought.
“I like you, pampered little shit that you are. I just like myself more.” Fair enough.
It’s not looking good for Tyrion, guys. He knows it, and because he’s better than all of us, he doesn’t hold it against Bronn. I mean, fighting the Mountain. Come on. He gives Bronn the “no hard feelings” hand shake, won’t let go, and then Bronn clears his throat and goes off to bed his new bride, leaving Tyrion to plan how he’ll kill the Mountain himself. If he manages it, what a hell of a song that would make! Could be a Westeros hit like Rains of Castamere. Tyrion? If I may: get Tits in a Hot Tub to sing it.
Cut to Meeren and to Daario with some smooth moves to get into Dany’s pants. Well, that’s not gonna work, buddy. Roadside flowers? Pfft. Look, Khaleesi: Daario signed up with you to use his skills every damn day, fucking and fighting, and he just fought with you over what to do, so…
“Take off your clothes.” DAENERYS MOTHER OF DRAGONS AND BREAKER OF CHAINS! Bow chicky bow wow! (Even though Daario has a skinny tush. SORRY.)
On to Dragonstone and the complete opposite feeling for tubby time than we had in Dreadfort. Fire Crotch Mage – and JFC, Melisandre is a beautiful, beautiful woman – has Stannis’ wife help her with some essential oils for her soak. And some essential knowledge (hey-o! Okay, that was weak.) that men can be fooled and tricked with potions and powders, but the end result is the same: they may be roofied in the beginning, but they soon learn to love the Lord of Light. Hey, I went to college, too, Melisandre, and I remember this line just before being offered some “potions and powders.”
Lady Cuckold stares at FCM and her beautiful body, the one her husband finally got a healthy child off of (shadow demon ninja kingslayer though it was). But she came for a reason: Stannis wants Newt (Shireen) to go with them, but Lady Cuckold thinks that’s a terrible idea because she really hates her scaly-faced daughter. FCM, however, has Seen Things. She makes Lady Cuckold stare into the flames so she can See Things Too. And… it looks like Shireen is going to be an offering to the Lord of Light or some shit? WOW. Not sweet little Newt! :(
My hope: Ser Davos saves the day. WITH GENDRY. IDK, don’t tell me what happens, obviously. We did not save little Newt from the terraforming planet of LV-426 and the xenomorphs just to toss her in a fire for her Daddy to be king, okay? [I am a huge nerd. You should know this by now.]
And then we jump to the saddest song in the whole land: the sound Jorah’s heart makes as he moves to enter her quarters next morning and sees Daario leaving while doing up his pants whistling “I just had sex! [And it felt so good!]”
“She’s in a great mood,” Daario says, further digging his heel metaphorically into Jorah’s broken heart.
“Really?” Jorah asks her. “That guy?” She shrugs. She’s just getting an itch scratched, Jorah. Besides, she sent him off to kill the Masters in Yunkai. (Side note: her costumes were amazing.)
Jorah would really like her to learn from her mistakes. There is good and evil on both sides of a war. TRUTH. Like that whole Hizdhar zo Loraq dude? Remember him? And then there’s the whole “we only know brutality” thing with the slaves that needs a tweak, because modeling good behavior is a better way of leading than more brutality. Also, Jorah had a bad past but because his life was spared, he’s now working for good. Put that in your crop, m’lady, and stew on it for a moment.
Dany sees his point. Make sure Darrio knows it – that it was Jorah’s idea. Send Loraq along with Daario to be an ambassador to weed out the good people. Jorah’s smile is bright, wide, and while he’s not getting the Khaleesi like he’d prefer, he at least has her respect. Well, and his right hand.
The Hound – sans armor – sits away from Arya and a fire, trying to clean out his disgusting neck wound. Arya wants to cauterize it (smart!) but he freaks out. She backs off, and he explains that her theory about how his face was disfigured was spot on. His wretched brother held his face to the fire over a toy. And what was worse, his father didn’t defend him, didn’t help him, hell, his father lied to everyone about how he was hurt in the first place! So Arya can say she’s all alone, but she doesn’t know what that means, not really.
And Sandor sits by himself, no armor, his biggest secret laid bare for an eleven-year-old little girl, and he looks so small, doesn’t he? Defenseless. Where’s your stab through the heart, Arya? Perfect time for it. Instead, she sees him for who he is – a [former] damaged child trying to survive – and sees herself. She cleans his wound and sews it up for him. I just really love these two and all they’re learning from each other. They’re both learning survival skills but in different arenas, huh?
Jeeves and Wooster, aka Brienne and Pod, settle in with a nice kidney pie baked by… Cartman! It’s Arya’s buddy Cartman (Hot Pie) with a lot of information no one asked about. The kid loves his gravy. Buddy? I’m from the south. I feel those feels. Gravy is important! But Brienne doesn’t care. She just wants to know if he’s seen a beautiful red-headed Stark? Goes by the name of Sansa? About so tall?
Nope. Never seen a Stark from Winterhell.
Uh huh. They pack up to leave and Pod has the very intelligent thought that they should probably not tell people they’re looking for someone of value because it could lead to their being killed, when Cartman comes back out and says that while he doesn’t know the red-headed Stark, he sure knows Arya. Give her this wolf bread he made her when they catch up, please? [whistles his “I <3 Gravy” song]
What was that about not telling people what we’re doing, Pod? Well, Pod does know things, like how the Eyrie is most likely where the Stark girls would be. Nice. And can we talk about Brienne’s beast of a horse? Because Gwendolyn is 6’3” and that horse is taller than her. DAMN.
But allow me to put on some asbestos pants, because there is a fire down below and it’s because of one Prince Oberyn Martell of Dorne. Good lord. He comes to see Tyrion, to say that Cersei tried to sway him. Tyrion seems resigned to a horrible death – and a little mocking from Oberyn before that, as Oberyn says how he met Tyrion before, when he was just born. He and his sister wanted to see the baby monster they’d heard all about. Cersei talked up how awful the baby was, how disgusting. [God, Tyrion’s face while he listens to this one.more.time was so painful.]
And then when Oberyn looked down at the baby… it was just a baby. Sure it was a little a-typical, but it was still a baby. Which is what he told Cersei. Cersei pinched the baby’s penis so hard they thought it would come off – GOOD LORD, CERSEI – until Jaime made her stop. (Wow, that set the stage for their whole existence, the three Lannisters, didn’t it?)
Everyone knew the baby would die soon. It shouldn’t have lived this long. (Seriously, tears and an ache in my chest so deep at Tyrion’s face, and you KNOW he’s heard this shit his whole life. People have said this behind his back, in front of his back, to his face his whole life.) But Oberyn wants to talk about justice.
He could be in a position to get what he wants – vengeance for his sister. The Mountain killed his sister and her children, for starters. He will kill the Mountain. He will be Tyrion’s champion.
If you don’t love Oberyn Martell you are living your life in an incorrect manner, and I have a 20 step pamphlet outlining how to get your life on the path towards truth and wonder. Steps 1 – 20: LOOK AT HIM. It’s pretty effective.
Sansa walks outside at the Eyrie and sees snow for the first time in who knows how long. Oh, sweet child, she is playing in the snow and building a snow model of Winterfell and I just really love Sansa Stark. She is such a little girl, still. Bad Boob Sucker comes out to mess things up.
BBS: Why doesn’t your home have a door that opens to death?
Sansa: Because we’re not monsters?
BBS: Mummy says I’m the most important person in the world. I’m to have the best of everything and do anything I want and that one day when I am Lord of the Vale I can kill people at will! [picks nose] I’m going to put them all in the cornfield!
BBS: LET ME KNOCK THIS OVER [destroys her castle because heaven forbid even a MODEL of Winterfell remains intact]
Sansa: >:( God dammit.
BBS: Mummy says you can’t ever be cross with me! [Stomps out her castle because he is IN SEVERE NEED OF A BOOT IN THE ASS]
“If you want to build a better home, first you must demolish the old one.”
HEY. HE IS TALKING ABOUT CATE. AND SANSA. Sansa? You in danger, gorl.
He tells her he killed Joffrey because he loved Sansa’s mom, but Sansa is Catelyn 2.0 and even better. THEN HE KISSES HER. Aaaand, there goes all the skin on my body, walking off with the heebie jeebies. AND HOLY CRAP IT’S WORSE BECAUSE LYSA IS WATCHING AHHHHHHHH!!!
SANSA. You in DANGER, gorl.
Sansa pushes away, frightened, and Petyr does some quick mental calculations on how to step up his plan.
Sansa is called in to speak with Lysa, who happens to be right by the Moon Door, and nope, that’s not ominous. I kept waving my hands to the side like Sansa was a bowling ball about to hit the gutter. Lysa’s all, “Ever see an egg hit the ground? How about a red-headed snippet? Sometimes the heads pop off. Funsies! LET’S TRY IT AGAIN.”
And then she grabs Sansa and tries to make her fly because she knows, she knows that Sansa is using her lady wiles to take away her one true love, Petyr, and no one will ever stop her from having the man she’s loved her whole life, NO ONE.
Petyr: WANNA BET? [flings her out the fucking moon door after saying yep, never loved you ever ever you crazy bitch! But not in so many words.]
Close up on Petyr’s Mockingbird pin, the sigil he chose for himself, a symbol of the house he wants to make for himself, fly away little Starling (Lysa) fly, fly. Oh, lord have mercy do not deny me the sight of Robin being flung through that damn hole. DO NOT.
I loved that Lysa screamed out the names of the people who stood between Petyr and the woman he loved, that those who do get in the way will die. Yep. And that’s just what happened to you, Lysa. Because he doesn’t love you, never did, and you’re too insane to know it. WOW.
Pretty big bet, Petyr, to leave Sansa alone for even a moment with Lysa knowing what she’s capable of. If he’d been just a moment late… Oooh. And I’m fairly certain Sansa knows that she’s officially out of that frying pan and in the fire.
I hope y’all know that I jumped up and screeched when Lysa fell through that damn hole. I hope y’all know that about me. And I hope you know I literally pumped my fist in the air when Oberyn said he would be Tyrion’s champion. Although, you know what? That whole speech leading up to it probably meant more to Tyrion than anything else in his entire life. Someone in power, someone of importance defended him. Is standing up for him, and has in the past. Jaime can’t – he’s cuckolded by more than just his love for Cersei. But Oberyn?
[kisses fingers] Tres magnifique! Also magnificent: the sight of Oberyn working the quarterstaff in the next episode. WHICH IS IN TWO WEEKS, NO NO NO! D:
Obligatory reminder since we pick up new folks every week (yay!): I am NOT a book reader. We have lively and respectful conversation here that is spoiler free. Cool people keep it that way. (And don’t hint about things in the books. It’s not necessary and it makes you look like a Try Hard. Don’t be that guy! This is about the show, and the book and the show are two different animals.)
I’m traveling all Monday, so I’ll be here to scream and flail with you kittens later, so please play nice?