Game of Thrones – Oathkeeper

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Wow – what an episode! It wasn’t necessarily crazy intense but so many things happened and from start to finish, it was just non-stop. I’m getting the idea that the theme this season is just that; non-stop action, the plot developing at a clipping pace, hang on  to your couch because each episode just throws even more at you. I decided to go with the pros and cons approach again this week – because I liked how that turned out last time….so, away we go!

Pro – We open on Grey Worm being taught to read/speak the common tongue of Westeros by Missandei and it’s all very sweet; he’s inching his hand ever closer to hers on the table but she realizes it and pulls her hand away at the last minute…

Con – You feel bad for Grey Worm because 1) that name: I know he chose it because it was the name he had the day Daenerys liberated he and the rest of his Unsullied buddies, but still. His name is Grey Worm. 2) It’s hard to hit on the ladies when you’re a eunuch…bless him. He’s cute though. 3) Missandei asked him where he came from, before he was an Unsullied and he tells her “Once you’re Unsullied, you have always been Unsullied.” That’s sad guys.

Pro – Daenerys comes in; it’s time to put a hurting on some Meereenese!

Pro/Con – Grey Worm and several of his Unsullied pals infiltrate the city….via the sewers (that water was a disturbing shade of brown…) and join a large group of slaves that are meeting under the city. They’ve revolted before and it’s gone badly because they have no training or weapons. Grey Worm and company provide them with weapons and….

Preach the truth Grey Worm – rally the troops. 

Pro – We cut to Daenerys walking among the liberated Meereenese slaves, all throwing their slave collars at her feet and heralding her as “Mhysa” (mother in high valyrian). Ser Barristan encourages her to answer injustice with mercy, but she utters that line we all saw a hundred times in the trailer (You didn’t see the trailer a hundred times? That was just me? Oh well…) “I will answer injustice with justice”….cue the chills. She takes 163 slave masters and each one gets crucified in much the same manner as the 163 children who pointed the way to Meereen for Daenerys – but the masters point the way to something much different: Daenerys, who has moved into the top floor of the Pyramid of Meereen. Nice!

Targaryen sigil meme Game of Thrones 4x04 Oathkeeper flag Imgur
Daenerys atop the Pyramid of Meereen…that Targaryen sigil looks menacing, does it not?
Pro – Jaime is getting better at sword fighting with his left hand, but Bronn never plays fair and so he snatches off Jaime’s fancy golden hand and slaps him in the face with it, effectively giving him…the upper hand. No pun intended – really. 
Pro – Bronn gets bold with Jaime and tells him that he needs to go see Tyrion; he tells him when Tyrion needed a champion back in the Vale, he wanted Jaime and only when he was told that the battle must take place that day did he choose Bronn. Bronn tells Jaime that he couldn’t fight for Tyrion that day, but he could fight for him now. Which translates to: Go see your freaking brother in the dungeons!

Game of Thrones Season 4 Oathkeeper Photos Jaime
You should be ashamed Jaime – go see your brother in the dungeons!
Pro – Jaime goes to visit Tyrion and any scene with Jaime and Tyrion is a blast. They hash through the necessary question/answer period, Tyrion asks Jaime if he likes how the Kingslayer brothers sounds; that could be their new nickname – Tyrion tells Jaime that; No, he didn’t kill his son and Jaime tells Tyrion that; No, he isn’t visiting him on behalf of Cersei to kill him. Jaime tries to tell Tyrion that everything will be fine, there will be a trial and it will all work out – Jaime still seems delightfully ignorant of just how vindictive and hateful Cersei truly is – that will change. Tyrion asks Jaime to help him break out of the dungeons and Jaime tells him that would be treason…to which Tyrion retorts “oh yes, because I’d hate for you to do something inappropriate!”

Pro – Sansa is safe on board Littlefinger’s ship; granted, that’s a somewhat questionable definition of safe but she’s certainly better off than she was in King’s Landing. She’s also slowly but surely becoming much more adept at deciphering motives and playing this game – the all important game.

Pro/Con – Littlefinger questions Sansa about incidents surrounding King Joffrey’s death; she knows that Dontos would never really be allowed to play too large a part because he’s a drunk and a fool….and Littlefinger would never trust a drunken fool. Point – Sansa! Once he admits he plays a part in killing Joffrey, she wonders why Littlefinger would work against the Lannisters since they’ve been so kind to him; to which he tells her that “a man with no motive is a man no one suspects..” He lets her know “”If they don’t know who you are or what you want, they cant know what you plan to do next.” And when Sansa asks him what he does want…I know the answer before he says it: everything.

Con – Littlefinger isn’t short on ambition and he’s got plenty of brain power; he’s good at playing the game and tells Sansa that they’re en route to the Vale where her Aunt Lysa lives. Petyr (that’s Littlefinger’s name, by the way – Petyr Baelish) is going to marry her and get himself another title…and strengthen a new alliance he made with…

Watch 'Game Of Thrones' season 4 episode 4 online at these locations. The latest episode 'Oathkeeper' will have all our favorite characters return. Find out what to expect! (Photo: HBO)
Hey Sansa…you look a lot like your Mother…did you know that? 

Pro – The Tyrells! Lady Olenna and Margaery are walking through the gardens (seriously – they are always in those gardens; Lordy, I know they’re house sigil is a rose but that’s about enough) and through some elaborating on her past, Lady Olenna lets Margaery know that she helped put an end to beloved King Joffrey. Margaery seems surprised and her grandmother admonishes her, asking if she really thought she’d let her granddaughter marry such an awful beast? She tells her she has to find a way to make Tommen hers; Cersei will get her claws into her younger son and Margaery must find a way to endear the boy to her first…and we’ll get back to that…but first, a breakdown of the poisoning from Entertainment Weekly.

...As many of you guessed last week, the poison was hidden in one of the gems in Sansa’s necklace. Littlefinger gave the necklace to Dontos, who gave it to Sansa, who wore it at the wedding. The Queen of Thorns “adjusted” it while talking to Sansa, secretly removed one stone, then presumably dropped it into Joffrey’s drink while his back was turned…..

Pro – Jon Snow is training men at Castle Black; Alliser Thorne interrupts him and reminds him he’s only a steward and needs to go empty a chamber pot and quit wandering around like he has any business training anyone. Thorne is cautioned by Janos Slynt to be careful; everyone seems to like Jon and while Thorne may be in charge for a time, they will end up having a choosing to elect a new Lord Commander and he surely doesn’t want to be taking orders from Jon Snow for the rest of his days.

Game of Thrones Season 4 Oathkeeper Photos Jon Snow
Look out Jon – if you play your cards right, you might be the Lord Commander of the crows…

Pro – Jaime goes to see Cersei…who is maybe a goblet away from being completely drunk. She knows he’s been to see Tyrion and Jaime pleads with her, telling her their little brother didn’t do it. Cersei lashes out at him for this thought and further accuses him by asking why Catelyn Stark let him go – she had nothing to gain as Cersei sees it, but she freed him. Why? Jaime tells her he swore by oath that he’d return her daughters to her but that’s of no matter now because Catelyn Stark is dead. Cersei wants Jaime to go now and find Sansa Stark and bring her head back…but when Jaime will not commit, she tells him to put four guards outside Tommen’s room and dismisses him with “That will be all Lord Commander…” 

*Their relationship is fraying fast and that’s a good thing…but I’m kind of fascinated that nothing at all was mentioned about last week. I guess it will forever be exactly what it was: a poor choice made by the directors that can’t be undone. Oh well…moving on…*

Pro – Tommen is having trouble sleeping and sees that someone is coming into his room. He’s terrified for a hot second until he realizes who is coming into his room…and then he’s feeling a whole different kind of terror. It’s Margaery! She’s come to visit her soon-to-be third husband and tells him that since they will soon be man and wife, they should have some secrets that are only theirs – AKA, don’t tell your Mom about this – and Tommen is so enchanted by having a full grown woman sitting on his bed that he gulps and agrees: seriously…he’s all of 14, I’m fairly certain he’s died and gone to heaven. Margaery pulls a fake out, going in for a kiss and then planting one on her little king’s forehead before sashaying out of his room with a promise to return again. Sneaky, sneaky…

Every 14 year old boy’s dream come true….right? Margaery knows how to play this game.

Pro – So much pro from this next scene, mostly because Nikolaj Coster-Waldau & Gwendoline Christie just kill it. Jaime presents Brienne with three gifts and they speak volumes: the first being the Valyrian steel sword that Jaime’s father game him in the premiere episode. He gives her the sword as well as custom made armor and charges her with finding Sansa Stark and getting her to safety – and this is where we see the changes that have been wrought in Jaime – he is effectively choosing Brienne and his honor over his family, and even his sister. He also tells her that since the sword he’s bestowing on her was made from Ned Stark’s old sword, she will be defending Ned Stark’s daughter with Ned Stark’s steel. The last gift? Well that would be Tyrion’s squire Podrick: he needs to get out of town and she needs a squire…and y’all he is too excited to go on an adventure. I love it.

Con – Those goodbyes that are said, they are enough to make a person (not me, surely not me…) stifle back a small sob or two. The world they live in is extremely dangerous and they are both well aware; not only of the impact on one another but the fact that this may well be the last time they see each other again. It’s a bit more poignant for Brienne because she knows, whether she wants to or not, that she loves Jaime – I don’t think Jaime has gotten there quite yet but he knows the time he spent with her has made him a better person; she allowed him to begin to make an effort to reclaim something resembling honor. That final look from Brienne to Jaime as they ride away – well, I’m gutted.
Pro – She names the sword Oathkeeper; for the oath Jaime originally made to Catelyn Stark to return her daughters and for the oath she now makes to Jaime to find Sansa Stark and deliver her to safety. Just kill me now. *emotion*
Gwendoline Christie as Brienne of Tarth in Game of Thrones S04E04: 'Oathkeeper'
And to you, my bestest friend…I give this fancy sword. 

Con – Because Game of Thrones likes to jolt you around, we jump from heroics and heraldry to Craster’s Keep; which if you don’t remember is the fortress north of the Wall where Craster lived with all his daughter-wives and sacrificed his baby boys to the White Walkers. It was already a delightful place, but now that Craster has been murdered and the keep has been overtaken by Karl and his band of Night’s Watch deserters, it’s just downright horrific. Karl is drinking wine out of the very deceased Lord Commander Mormont’s skull (ick…so much ick) while his buddies gorge themselves on wine, food…and well, women. It’s depressing and unsettling and I would be fine if we never went back to Craster’s Keep.

Con – One of the daughter-wives comes in with a new baby boy; the last of Craster’s children. All the women start mumbling that the baby should be “given to the Gods” and so Karl tells one of the other men to take the baby out into the woods and leave him for the Walkers. Poor baby…
Pro – We come up on Bran, Hodor, Jojen and Meera in the snowy woods and they can hear that baby crying! Bran wargs into his wolf, Summer and goes to inspect but gets caught in a trap! The four of them move in closer to see what is going on at Craster’s Keep (although I guess it’s technically Karl’s Keep now) and promptly get captured! (Okay, that isn’t necessarily a pro.)
Con – Why do they chain Hodor up? Why do they poke him with a spear? That’s mean…
GoT S4E4
He only looks comfy by the fire…
Con – Jojen goes into one of his shaking/seeing fits and before they will let Meera go to help him, Bran has to admit to them that he’s Brandon Stark of Winterfell and suddenly they’ve got themselves a nice hostage situation. 
Pro – They don’t know that Jon Snow and a band of his Night’s Watch brothers are on the way to the Keep to end the mutiny and rescue the women from the likes of Karl and his band of rapist pals. 
*This brings about an interesting development because Jon Snow and Bran do NOT see one another north of the Wall in the book, so I’m interested to see how this plays out in coming weeks. I’m of the mind that most people share – while I’d love a little Stark/Snow reunion, the book reader in me is squealing “that’s breaking the rules!” But shoot…they’ve basically shot the rules to hell at this point.*
Not even a week old & you’re already recruited to an army of undead frozen people…sigh…
Con – That sweet baby boy that was left in the forest for the White Walkers has been collected by a White Walker on a large, very dead horse. He takes the baby through the woods, across the tundra and lays him on what appears to be some kind of altar. A White Walker that seems to be some kind of king (don’t get me started on this…apparently they dropped a big ol spoiler here…one not even book readers know about) picks up the baby and lays one cold finger on the baby’s cheek – and the babies’ eyes turn a crystalline blue. Presto! Baby Wight! 
And that was where the episode ended – with a new baby Wight and then we fade to black. I was certainly intrigued and a bit bamboozled by this development since White Walkers and their minions, Wights are used so sparsely in the books…even five books into the series. This is a pretty big indication that they’ve got a larger role to play and if George doesn’t get off his butt and start writing, the show will begin to outpace the books. I’m intrigued to see if we get more scenes like that over the next six episodes of the season.
I leave you with this picture – because it cracks me up and completely describes my favorite relationship on the show; the one between Jaime and Brienne. Until next week – Tyrion wouldn’t want you to do anything inappropriate! 

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