Tuesday, May 1, 2012

What I’m Watching: Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones: Season 2, Episode 5 “The Ghost of Harrenhal” (B+)

It didn’t take long for the horrific black smoke monster birthed at the end of the previous episode to cause some major damage. Renly’s death means that Lady Stark now has an eternal ally in the Brienne, which should prove helpful since she’s tough as nails. Renly’s death doesn’t make things any less complicated, unfortunately, as others continue to strive for the throne. Margaery’s differentiation between being “a queen” and “the queen” is a crucial one, since eventually the number of warring kingdoms is going to be depleted, perhaps not to one but presumably to at most two. Daenerys’ brush with the creepy House of the Undying paled in comparison to the rather unromantic marriage proposal that she got from Xaro, and that could well put her back on the map as one of the most powerful claimants to the throne. Arya also managed to net herself a surprising amount of power, as Jaqen tells her that he owes her three lives for the three that she saved, and demonstrates his follow-through as he kills the first man she names. I suspect it won’t be long before she names Joffrey, which should prove difficult to execute, but she may also want to save him so that she herself can be the one to kill him. Tyrion commissioning the maker of wildfire to make it for him and not for Cersei is just the latest step in his path to power, and what a formidable ally the little man has become. Robb’s camp seems set to experience a hard and long winter, but their leadership seems strong enough to plan ahead rather than just keep trudging ahead for the sake of it.

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