We’ve reached the midway point, people!
What a few weeks it’s been. We’ve seen a man burned at the stake, a sword go through an eye socket and two dragons rip apart a poor sap after burning him alive. We’ve been reminded that winter is coming – it’s taking its sodding time; that the Boltons are so weird it’s a miracle Ned Stark (Sean Bean) didn’t do away with the lot of them; and that Jon Snow (Kit Harington) still knows nothing, despite getting a job at MI:5 in his downtime. A sly Spooks reference there, in case you missed it.
And now, with just five episodes left – is it really that point already? – we have an hour that doesn’t even feature Cersei (Lena Headey), so shaming becomes all the more difficult. But not impossible.
Shame on you (i)
We’ve not seen anywhere near enough Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) this year, and if I’m honest, what we’re seeing really is moving at a snail’s pace. It’s like Tyrion’s story and that fabled, ever-approaching winter are stuck on the same train, and the bastard’s been delayed. That being said, it was simply stunning to see the legendary Valyria brought to life in all it’s glory. And who better to appreciate it than the exposition-spouting Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen) and Tyrion Lannister, two of the smartest people in the show.
It probably wasn’t Jorah’s smartest move, taking them through a city infested with Stone Men, who, as far as I can see, have taken a simple game of tig way too far. If these weirdos touch you, you become like them – walking, talking rocks doomed to live in a ruin. So, of course, it was the perfect idea to journey down the narrow river where they live.
Is Jorah doomed? Well, Stannis’ (Stephen Dillane) daughter Selyse (Tara Fitzgerald) was cured, albeit left disfigured. Maybe Jorah needs the same doctors she had. Or maybe he should just chop his arm off and hope for the best. Hey, Jorah! Ramsay Bolton (Iwan Rheon) specialises in removing limbs. Just ask Theon (Alfie Allen). Speaking of him…
Shame on you (ii)
For the first time this season, Ramsay actually got some stuff to do. Seeing as he’s my favourite character from the books, this is a positive, yes? Well…
I’ll put it this way. In the books, Ramsay is such a sick, sadistic psychopath that he freaks you out instantly from his first appearance. Theon’s terror is so well described and effective because a lot of what’s done to him is left to the imagination. What is clear is that Ramsay has broken him, both in body and mind.
In the show, Ramsay has been portrayed pretty well up to now, but I did feel this episode made him just a little too… funny. Ramsay is many things, but he should not be played for laughs, and in the dinner scene especially, that’s exactly what the writers were doing.
I did, however, appreciate Roose (Michael McElhatton) putting him firmly in his place, with the news that his blushing bride Walda (Elizabeth Webster) is expecting. Everything Ramsay has achieved could be snatched from him, by a baby. Expect to see Walda involved in a very serious “accident” in the next few weeks. Maybe Ramsay could enlist the help of Lady Macbeth wannabe Myranda (Charlotte Hope).
At least Sansa’s (Sophie Turner) starting to cotton on to how deranged Ramsay is. She’d better be careful going forward. He’s not a guy you want to piss off.
Shame on you (iii)
Last Thursday, David Cameron’s Conservative party won a majority in the UK general election, meaning it pretty much gets to pass any laws it wants, provided its own members don’t get in the way. From the start, Cameron had a clear tactic: let everyone else battle it out and destroy each other. Just sit back, grab some popcorn, and move in at the last second for ultimate victory.
If I were the White Walkers, I’d follow Cameron’s tactic. Let Westeros tear itself apart with its incest, greed and violence. Let the Wildlings and the Crows rip each other to bits. When the time comes to invade, there’ll be nobody left to stop them.
Poor Jon Snow is fighting a losing battle. Half the Watch already despise him for laying with one Wildling girl, and now he wants to open the gates for the rest of them. It turns out that 8,000 years of mutual hatred goes a long way, and even his closest friends don’t want to follow him on this. Plus, Tormund (Kristofer Hivju) agrees that the Wildlings will never work with the Crows. Guys, do you not realise what’s coming? Yes, it’s on a delayed train at the moment, but it’s coming. Season seven or eight at least! It’s like you all want to turn into zombies!
And for that matter, Stannis is buggering off to fight the Boltons. What happened to the wars of men meaning nothing? Are you bored, mate? Surely the best thing would be to combine his army with the Wildlings and lay siege to wherever the White Walkers are hanging their ice hats.
It doesn’t look good for the Wall. I’m betting it’s going to be destroyed; that the White Walkers are going to rip Westeros apart, and only Dany (Emilia Clarke) and her dragons will be able to stop them. Except she’s spent far too much time pissing about in Meereen, and there won’t be an Iron Throne left for her to conquer.
Shame on you (iv)
Dany is not happy. The Sons of the Harpy have now robbed her of her closest adviser and, it seems, robbed Grey Worm (Jacob Anderson) of his balls – well, you get the idea. What does she do? She gathers the Masters together and feeds one of them to her dragons. Was he the man responsible? Who knows? Dany’s message was clear: if the murders continue, I will continue to feed you to the dragons every Monday. It could be any of you. So stop it. Not exactly the justice she wanted to promote just three episodes ago, is it?
It seems we have yet another wedding on its way, between Dany and Hizdahr (Joel Fry). Only Dany can’t produce children, and the marriage will be purely on her terms. Just think, if anything happens to Dany, Hizdahr could be left in a very powerful position. Tyrion mate, where the hell are you? Dany needs your help, and soon.
So five down, five to go. Maybe winter will be here next week, but even if it isn’t, we certainly will be. Join us then for more shaming.