Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Catching Up on "Game of Thrones" Season Two (Part 2 of 4)

May 19, 2012

My Part 1 of this Game of Thrones Season 2 recap (Episodes 1 and 2) is posted HERE.

Now to continue.  SPOILER ALERT, of course!

Episode 3:  What Is Dead May Never Die

The summary for this episode is much shorter.  Unlike the first two episodes which were more panoramic in scope, this one is more focused, marked by only four major events.  

One, Theon's decision that his loyalty lies with the Greyjoys as he burns the letter that was supposed to warn Robb of an attack.  

Two, after sacking Janos Slynt in Episode 2, Tyrion excellently plots and executes a ploy to find out who in the City Council was his sister the Queen's spy.  When the spy was revealed to be old Grand Maester Pycelle (Julian Glover), he was promptly arrested.

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Third, we finally meet the fifth king after the Iron Throne, Renly Baratheon.  He just witnessed his gay lover Ser Loras beaten in a duel by a giantess named Brienne (Gwendolyn Christie).  Brienne becomes Renly's close-in security.  We were also told that he could not get his wife Margaery pregnant because his thoughts were with her brother Loras during their intimate moments.  Modern Ms. Margaery offers to have her brother in there with them, as long as she gets pregnant with an heir.  Robb sent his mother Catelyn to strike up an alliance with Renly against the Lannisters.

Fourth, Yoren's dramatic last stand as he was killed in duel by King Joffrey's men who were still looking for the bastard Gendry.  Arya had the presence of mind of identifying some random dead boy who was only holding Gendry's helmet as THE Gendry the guards were seeking.

Episode 4:  Garden of Bones

The episode opens with Robb Stark winning another bloody victory in battle vs. JoffreyKing Joffrey again shows off his fearsome cruelty in this episode, but he does know how to pick victims who cannot fight back, this time to women.  First was his betrothed prisoner Sansa Stark, who was fortunately saved by Tyrion in the nick of time.  Less fortunate though were a couple of prostitutes (gifts of Tyrion) whom the King forced to perform and suffer sadistic acts.  This boy is truly sick.  On his part, Tyrion gets himself a new spy, their cousin Lancel, whom he blackmails with the information that he is the new boy-toy of the sexually-insatiable Queen.

Meanwhile, Arya and Gendry were brought to a burnt depressing prison at Harrenhal by their captors.  When Gendry was picked to be tortured to death, fortune intervened when Tywin Lannister interrupts the torture and orders to put prisoners to work.  The elder Lannister recognizes Arya as a girl and conscripts her to be his cupbearer.

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Daenerys and her ragtag group of barely surviving Dothrakis reach the prosperous city of Qarth, which was surrounded by a desert called the "Garden of Bones".  On the intercession of one of the foreigner members of the ruling group called The Thirteen, Danaerys (recognized as the Mother of Dragons) and her posse were welcomed in as guests.
Onwards to Stormlands of Renly Baratheon, we see the smarmy brothel owner cum City Council member Lord Baelish, who was sent by Tyrion to negotiate.  Baelish also meets up with his lost "love" Catelyn Stark, and offers her the two Stark daughters in exchange for the release of Jamie Lannister.  Catelyn predictably rebuffs him knowing that Robb will never allow it, but Baelish goes one step further and returns Ned Stark's bones to her.
The two Baratheon brothers meet in the fields the next day.  Stannis offers Renly to join up with him, but of course Renly refuses, so it is now full-on war between these two groups.  That night, Stannis orders his trusted friend Davos Seaworth to smuggle Melisandre to an isolated shore for her to do her private business.  In front of the shocked Davos, Melisandre shucks off her cloak to reveal a full pregnancy.  She then proceeded to lay down and push, eventually giving birth to a black misty demon, looking very much like a Dementor (from the Harry Potter saga)!

Episode 5:  The Ghost of Harrenhal
This episode gives us the first real shock of the season and it happen right in the first five minutes!  While negotiating with Catelyn in the presence of Brienne, Renly Baratheon was suddenly attacked and stabbed dead by a black misty demon -- Melisandre's Dementor!  Just like that, one contender for the Iron Throne is dead.  Catelyn and Brienne become fugitives.
The rest of this episode is already more relaxed after that hell of a beginning.  
One important development was Tyrion's discovery of Cersei's plan to use alchemy when they battle Stannis, in the form of "Wildfire", supposedly a substance that can melt ANYTHING in its path.  Of course, Tyrion weasels himself to control the production of this powerful weapon.

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Danaerys receives a tempting proposal from Xaro of Qarth for her hand in marriage, in exchange for his support in her quest to gain control of the Iron Throne.  Before she says yes though, her loyal adviser who secretly loves her Joram Mormont checks her, and suggests to get to Westeros using only a single ship and fight with a local army.
Arya also gets a deal from one of the three guys she saved from death before, a scraggly (now cleaner) guy named Jaqem.  Jaqem offers to kill any three men of Arya's choice in return for the three lives she saved.  At the end of the episode, the first person in Arya's hit list, the cruel Torturer guy, already falls to his death.  

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