*Spoiler Warning: Please only continue with this series blog if you have watched up to series 3 of Game of Thrones*
After a couple of episodes of subtle exposition, the primary movers-and-shakers of Westeros finally started to head in different directions last night and we found ourselves adding another layer of deeply entwined sex and treachery to the swathe of character hubbub we have already collated. The plot is not so much ‘thickening’ as tangling itself into a delicious gloop of medieval chicanery.
But if the writers make us work hard to uncover some of the more nuanced plot details, there are some things they certainly don’t mind hammering us with. First of all, we know that Jaime Lannister stabbed the previous King in the back. That was mentioned a couple of times last night so it’s obviously important. He was mad as well apparently…
Newly appointed Hand of the King* Sean Bean is also very keen to point out exactly who is and who isn’t in his family. “You are a Stark (of Winterfell)” he says to his various kids every time he sees them. Even his bastard child Jon Snow (not that one..) gets the treatment, although why Bean’s otherwise even-headed wife has to be so harsh to him is quite frankly beyond us. Then again Ned’s not saying too much about the lad’s mother, so maybe that whole situation will come into focus as we progress. Either way we predict that Snow will become a seriously crucial character. (I haven’t read the books by the way – so this is genuine guesswork folks..)
We were also treated to the usual “Winter is coming” chorus last night, but this time we also got some gory backstory from Bran’s old nurse. Bran may have woken from his coma, but the lad still can’t remember the circumstances which lead to his fall.. (which is strange because that’s not the type of thing a young man forgets in a hurry..) Nevertheless tales of women smothering their babies and children freezing in their beds make you realise why these people keep banging on about the changing season so much. “What do you know of fear, child of summer?” Go easy on him love – the poor lad’s just found that he’s disabled!
One person who certainly knows a thing or two about fear is James Cosmo, who made his 472nd appearance as a character from some sort of ancient world last night. Like Prince Harry, he turned up, made a couple of comments and smiled a bit, but still managed to walk away with the show.
With the Starks and the Lannisters pretty much installed as our early factions, we also begin to look across the Narrow Sea to find out how the blond children of the mentally unstable and epically betrayed previous King are doing. After learning to have sex properly in episode two, Daenerys Targaryen seems to be picking up the language, and with the help of her Caucasian PA and smokin’ shagging-instructor, she’s fallen pregnant to the rutting monoslab Khal Drogo. But if she is growing more influential in her adopted land, her utterly effete brother is not doing so well. Indeed by the time the tribe kick his arse following an outburst directed at his sister, his wild rantings are making him look very much like a comic side-show. He’s a vicious little bastard though, so we assume he’ll be back in the game soon. Daenerys might need to watch her back lest she suffer the same fate as her old man.
Another thing I’ve noticed is that if you are a bloke in GOT, the colour of your barnet usually discerns how much of an conniving shit you are. Is it a coincidence that both Lannister junior (Malfoy?) and the previously mentioned Viserys Targaryen share not only some questionable hair, but strong claims to be the most dislikeable things South of the Wall? Their collective bastardry knows no limits. Speaking of the Wall, we got a decent look at it for the first time last night. According to Ned’s chiselled younger brother, half the men sent there perish in the freezing temperatures, which explains why most of them have been sent there as part of their parole. We think Jon Snow should be alright, especially as he seems to be forging an uneasy alliance with my favourite character of the series so far – Tyrion Lannister. The imp has a sharp tongue but he seems to have a soft spot for his fellow outcast? You know what they say about the Lannisters though…
*”The King shits..”