Thank the Old Gods and the New: Game of Thrones Episode Two

By popular demand I’m sharing another Game of Thrones critique, and I’ll be nicer on Sansa I promise. Well, a little nicer anyway. Last week Thrones did a fantastic job of showing us the current statuses of all (or most) of our favorite characters. But this week was jam packed with climaxes and some serious plot twists. My job is to give you the rundown on the episode and fill you in on whom you do and don’t owe sympathy to.

 

Cersei got her voice back, thank the Gods.

In my last review I was a little hard on Cersei and her lack of compassion toward Jaime during what was undoubtedly his least-confident moment. But this Sunday, even though she’s still technically a villain, Cersei returned as the strong, beautiful, buoyant empress that we adore. Don’t get me wrong, she got a little nuts toward the end, but calling out Brienne mid-episode could have been my favorite encounter of the season thus far.

Because she called out Brienne of Tarth

Is Brienne really in love with Jaime? We really can’t be sure. She’s not the most outspoken of characters, so the most we know about Brienne’s emotional life is that she was desperately in love with Renly Baratheon. There is no doubt that Brienne and Jaime have a seriously special connection and I’m interested to see where that leads. Don’t forget, Loras is still blaming her for Renly’s death and Cersei is still shunning Jaime so we really can’t predict where that whole situation is going.

Speaking of Loras, welcome back!

Loras has been a little MIA lately but I’m kind of glad he’s back, and he’s fiercer than ever.  Loras Tyrell told off Jaime Lannister and that’s not something all of us can get away with. Assuming, of course, that we can actually exist in Westeros in some amazing alternate universe. Watch out Lannisters, the Tyrells are after you all and I’m pretty sure Cersei is the only one who knows it.

Am I the only one enamored by Lady Olenna?

Olenna Tyrell (Margaery’s grandmother, in case you’re confused) is quite possibly the strongest female character currently on television. She’s witty, sarcastic, facetious, quick-minded and completely equal to the crudeness of the rest of the population of King’s Landing. DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE THIS WOMAN. I will not disclose any spoilers, but I did read the books so trust me when I caution you on Olenna’s imminent shrewdness.

Melisandre is equally as shrewd, but also gorgeous.

They couldn’t have casted anyone better as the Red Priestess. Her ability to sway people is flawlessly disheartening, especially when it comes to Selyse Florent-Baratheon (Stannis’ not-so-great-looking wife). If she turns the sweet but scarred Princess Shireen into something of a monster, I would be tremendously saddened. Beware the redheaded beauty, for the night is dark and full of terrors.  

A terror of his own, Ramsay Snow. 

You wanted to hate him, and I totally still do, but he’s just as much a bastard as Jon Snow and we have to give him a little credit where it’s deserved.  He only wants to make Bolton proud and yeah, Bolton’s a traitor, but Ramsay’s only intention is to prove himself to his father and isn’t that what we all want in life? Meanwhile, Roose Bolton deserves a good Winterfell-inspired beating and it better be coming in the very near future.

 AM I THE ONLY ONE WHO KNOWS ALL THE WORDS TO THE LANNISTER ANTHEM?!

Hate on the Lannisters all you want, but “The Rains of Castamere” has become a very welcome presence in my Sunday nights. The actual theme song doesn’t have lyrics, so the “The Rains” have taken a very close second to it in my mind. Particularly in this episode, the ensemble that played the Lannister tune at the royal wedding happened to be very appealing and I found myself irritated with Joffrey for making them stop.

We don’t really have to discuss Joffrey, right?

Spoiler alert - He’s dead. He’s gone. I’m so happy. End of story. Really the only downside is that Tyrion could have possibly done it. Or Margaery, or Sansa, or Oberyn, or Varys, or Lady Olenna, or Sir Dantos, or Cersei herself. No one knows, that’s the best part! Well I do, but I won’t tell you. What we do know is that the next eight episodes are not to be missed, so keep your Sunday schedule open.

We also said sayonara to Shae

I hate to say it but Tyrion was a little mean. You’re shipping her to Pentos? Why pentos? Anyway, I don’t think this is the last time we’ll be seeing Shae.  Whore or not, she’ll find her way back to Tyrion, or at least to Dany who also happens to be in the Free Cities (side note). We all know Khaleesi’s heart is open to strong, beautiful women who have been mistaken as slaves.

Needless to say, this episode was the real kickoff to the season. While some characters were lost and some reappeared, there are still so many questions to be answered. Where was Dany? You can’t just make an episode without our goddess of a princess. And Prince Oberyn clearly has something up his sleeve for the Lannister clan.  The three-eyed raven is officially unsettling and evidently has something very crucial coming for Bran. Come next Sunday, I will most definitely be craving a little Jon Snow and Arya Stark in my life. I know a feisty 11-year-old who will be thrilled to hear about the bloody royal wedding that was this week’s Game of Thrones.