This Week’s Game of Thrones Awards: Awkward, Kinda-Sweet, Foreshadowed-to-Death

stormofswordsSeason 4, Episode 5: First of His Name

Greetings, and welcome! My name is Ben and what you have stumbled upon here is the ONLY Game of Thrones recap on the entire internet. From now until the end of the season I will be summarizing every episode, giving out highly prestigious awards, and counting how many times Hodor says “Hodor.”

We have been conditioned over the last three-plus seasons of Game of Thrones to regard important events (we’d call them black tie affairs in this universe) with some amount of apprehension.

If weddings aren’t safe, then why should the coronation of the new king be? Especially since that new king actually seems…well, decent. There’s already a black cloud hanging over the new reign of Tommen: he seems too nice to rule in this awful world. His mother, Cersei, remarks that he’s going to need “some help” but that might be putting it mildly. Thankfully, the event went off without a hitch. And by “a hitch” I mean death by poison or beheading.

Plenty of other awful moments were teased, but for a change all of the deaths on Sunday night’s episode elicited fist pumps instead of bitter Twitter rants. It was great to see Ghost get a snack, Jon Snow putting a sword through the back of Karl Tanner’s head was a graphic and satisfying moment, and Locke’s sinister plot being ended by Hodor was enough to make a man exclaim “Hodor!”

Speaking of the bloodbath at Craster’s Keep, it was heartbreaking to see Bran and Jon so close to each other without being able to converse. We can only dream that one day, at least two of the living Starks will meet again.

Sansa’s arrival in the Vale seems like good news for her, but we’ve been to this weird place before…and we know better. Her next undesirable marriage has been arranged, and while young Robin Arryn might not be quite as spoiled and cruel as Joffrey yet, we suspect that one day he might give him a run for his money. It’s at the Vale that we learn Lysa and Littlefinger conspired to murder her former husband and former hand of the King, Jon Arryn. The tentacles of Littlefinger’s influence spread farther than we realized, and if this show goes on long enough we might eventually discover he was involved in the Kennedy assassination.

Meanwhile, across the Narrow Sea, I have mixed feelings about Daenerys’ storyline. On one hand I’m glad the show is addressing the idea that simply freeing slaves then leaving is not as simple a solution as we were led to believe. But on the other hand it made me groan, as this part of the story was already moving slowly enough and now we have to backtrack? Ugh. At this rate she’ll be in King’s Landing just in time for King Tommen’s 50th birthday party.

Quotable Quotes

“He used to pat me on the back a lot.” –A rare moment of humor for Tywin Lannister, as he summarized former King Robert Baratheon perfectly. I’m not sure I can describe why this was one of the funniest moments in the history of the show, but it was. It also made me miss that big drunk oaf.

“Everywhere in the world they hurt little girls.” –Cersei Lannister

Awards!

-The “Most Awkward Intro” award goes to Robin Arryn, who greets Sansa by more or less saying, “Hey aren’t you the girl with all the tragically dead family members? By the way, I’m nuts!”

-The “We Missed You” award, an honor given to the character that I was most sad not to see in this week’s episode, goes to Tommen’s adorable cat Ser Pounce. Last week that little fella walked across the king’s lap and into my heart.

-This week’s “Aww, I guess that passes for sweet in this awful place” award goes to Brienne starting to soften on Podrick. At first the characters felt kind of shoved together, but they might have some onscreen chemistry after all.

-The “You Might be Human After All” award goes to Cersei Lannister this week, whose character seems to have more layers on the show than in the books. While her talk with Prince Oberyn could be viewed as an attempt to butter up a judge in Tyrion’s trial, I prefer to believe that her anguish over missing her daughter Myrcella was very real. Combine that scene with her chat with Margaery about Tommen, and you almost feel bad for her. Almost.

-I will hand out a “Foreshadowed to Death” award to the Iron Bank of Braavos, whose mentions seem to multiply each episode. Remind me to never get a credit card through those guys.

Official Hodor Count: 23

This week the word “Hodor” meant everything from “I don’t like this to,” to “I REALLY don’t like this,” to “whoa, pretty sure I killed that guy.”

On Next Week’s Episode…

Dany takes some civics courses, and Bran gets increasingly frustrated by the sheer number of equally creepy trees in Westeros.

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