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Game of Thrones: Sons of the Harpy

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This episode was where the season took a dark turn I noticed, and for Game of Thrones to take a dark turn, it must be pretty serious.

The episode opens on a man getting out of a boat, and he is soon hit over the head by none other than Jorah Mormont, who is still in possession of Tyrion Lannister. He steals the boat, tosses Tyrion on board and heads out for the open water.

On another boat, we see Ser Jaime Lannister and Bronn who are still on their way to Dorne. They discuss how Jaime doesn’t want to start a war as he rescues Marcella, and Bronn asks if Jaime set Tyrion free. We learn that Jaime plans to kill Tyrion if they ever see each other again.

Cersei is still ruling in her son’s place, and is still making bold moves that sends away members of her small council. She sends Mace Tyrell, who has recently been appointed Master of Coin, to deal with the Iron Bank of Braavos to negotiate better terms about their loan to the crown. After the council meeting, she also talks to the High Sparrow, about appointing him High Septon and giving him an army, called the Faith Militant that will serve the justice of The Seven. She then tells him about a sinner in the kingdom that she wants taken care of in return for giving him an army.

We quickly see the Faith Militant grow in power and become violent, raiding the streets, destroying property, tearing apart brothels and initiating new members by carving the seven-pointed star of their order. We see that the sin they seem to take most seriously is men sleeping with other men, and we also see that Lancel Lannister is a member of this new organization. Unsurprisingly, the Faith Militant almost immediately targets Ser Loras Tyrell for his “perversions.”

This makes his sister, Queen Margaery understandably furious. She immediately goes to confront Tommen about what she knows straight away is the work of his mother. She pleads with her King, asking him to set her brother free, but Cersei isn’t going to be ordered about as easily as that. When he goes to tell Cersei that he wants Ser Loras free, she simply points out that she’s not the one who had him arrested, it was the High Sparrow. She urges that Tommen go speak to him. Of course, that doesn’t go any better for him. At the steps he is met by a large group of the Faith Militant, and he won’t have them harmed in order to pass. He is soon bothered by the cries of the commoners who scream out insults, calling him an abomination and a bastard. He returns home without having made any progress, which causes marital trouble for him and Margaery, who starts to question his authority and chooses to spend time with her family rather than with Tommen.

At the wall, we see that Jon is still doing his best to train with the men of the Night’s Watch. Stannis discusses his past and his choices, as well as his plan to take back the North from the Boltons. Jon must leave the training yard to sign letters that Sam has written up for him, asking various Lords for more people to send to The Wall. One of which is none other than Roose Bolton, a letter which Jon has trouble signing. As Sam takes the letters away, Melissandre comes in to talk with Jon. She wants him to come with them when they go to Winterfell, as well as seduce him. He denies both offers and she leaves with the all-too-familiar words, “You know nothing, Jon Snow.”

Stannis in the meantime has a talk with Shireen, who doubts whether or not her father loves her. We learn more about the origins of her grayscale, and Stannis has his first truly sympathetic moment on the show as he comforts her. I personally hope Stannis and his entire army get fed to the flames they pray to as soon as possible, but it did make me like him just a tiny bit more when I watched this scene.

Sansa is back home at Winterfell, lighting candles in the crypts to honor her family. She is joined by Petyr Baelish. He talks about how Lyanna was chosen by Rhaegar Targaryen as the most beautiful girl at a tourney over his own wife. Petyr says that he’s leaving for King’s Landing to keep suspicion away. Petyr now seems to be backing Stannis Baratheon, and says that either way he’ll be back for Sansa. Either Stannis will rescue her from the Boltons, or she’ll continue with the wedding and marry Ramsay. They share yet another awkward kiss.

Jaime and Bronn arrive in Dorne and talk for awhile over breakfast before continuing their invasion of the south. When they do come across guards, Bronn must do most of the fighting of course, but in the fight sequence we do get to see that Jaime is learning how to use his golden hand to fight dirty.

Elyia Sand is talking to Oberyn’s daughters, the sandsnakes, about avenging their father’s death. We learn that she means to start a war between Westeros and Dorne. One of the sandsnakes, Obara, tells a story about how Oberyn came to claim her when she was a little girl, and said she could choose a spear like her father, or tears like her mother, and she says she made her choice a long time ago. She fights with weapons, and she will fight for her father as well.

Tyrion finally gets Jorah to un-gag him in the meantime, and the two of them begin talking about where they’re going. He laughs when he finds out that Jorah means to take him to Daenerys, since that was where he was headed anyway. He quickly figures out what happened to make her exile Jorah, and points out that she’s just as likely to execute him when he brings her Tyrion as she is to pardon him. He eventually angers Jorah enough to get hit.

Daenerys in the meantime is hearing stories from Ser Barristan about how her brother Rhaegal used to sing to the common people. She’s happy to hear about her oldest brother, since he was dead before she ever got the chance to know him. Though the conversation is making her laugh, the conversation soon turns to darker matters. She has to have another talk with Hizdar zo Loraq, who has once again come to talk to her about re-opening the fighting pits.

While they discuss that, a fight is breaking out in the streets between Daenerys’ people and the Sons of the Harpy, who are still rioting. It breaks out into a full on bloodbath, and many of the Unsullied are taken down. Though they are able to defeat all the Sons of the Harpy who are there at the time, but Grey Worm and Ser Barristan both are injured severely.

The episode undoubtedly means that there is a darker era coming to the show, but what bothered me most about it wasn’t the change in tone so much as what it was Cersei’s character. I personally don’t feel like it was a good idea for her to arm the Faith Militant and give them so much power over Lords and Ladies in the kingdom, when she herself has been accused of so many sins. Rumors would be one thing, but of course one of the people that she armed was one of the people that she had an incestuous affair with, her own cousin. It seems like a bad idea, and up until now I’ve seen Cersei as fairly intelligent.

Still, I’m very excited to see the new direction that this takes the show in, and as always I’m on the edge of my seat waiting for next week’s episode.

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Posted by on Tuesday, April 28th, 2015. Filed under Dark TV, Headline, Images. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

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