Tuesday, April 9, 2013

#GoT Episode Two: Dark Wings, Dark Words

Do not read this if you haven't seen this week's episodes. Do not blame me if you keep reading and see something you don't want to know.

So I tried to tweet during Sunday's episode but that was impossible because I was too busy WATCHING the show which was very good.

  • We catch up with Arya and her friends who spend some time with the Brotherhood without Banners, a free-agent group of roaming fighters, where she meets an old friend;
  • Theon Greyjoy, or as my friend Jean likes to call him Tooljoy, is being tortured after his humiliating debacle at Winterfell;
  • Sansa finally tells someone what Joffrey did to her;
  • Shea tries to get Tyrion to help Sansa;
  • Jaime and Brienne continue their odd-couple's journey, which is halted;
  • Bran and company meet some new friends and learn more about his powers;
  • Just a quick visit with Jon Snow and the Wildings. Jon's still with my boyfriend, Ciaran Hinds. I love that he's on this show;
  • Not much happens with Robb and Catelyn, just some boring hand-wringing about Jon Snow.
I love Arya and her friends; I find her character growth fascinating. We never get enough Arya time as far as I'm concerned. She runs into a friend of her sister's at the end of her sequence. I hope this works out OK for her but I'm concerned.

Most of this week's episode takes place at King's Landing and involves Margaery's attempts to get to know her betrothed a little better. She and her grandmother (Diana Rigg!) interview Sansa, and Sansa confides in them the terrible things that Joffrey's done to her.  Margaery exploits this knowledge expertly as usual, continuing her masterful manipulation of Joffrey. I like Margaery a lot. I like how smart she is, and how she is able to control things to her advantage without resorting to cruelty. She's a real politician, a born power broker, and as Cersei tries to tell her son, there's a reason behind everything she does. I can't wait to see what this great character will do next. Well, I kind of know, but you know what I mean. (I haven't read the books but I have read extensive spoilers for several characters.)

The other fun thing about this episode for me is the relationship between Jaime and Brienne. Jaime is really the character you love to hate, the antihero. I loved the scene last season where Tywin tells Jaime that he's basically a screwup, that he had every advantage and wasted them all, and Jaime is just like, who cares about you. I know he's a bad guy but I'm interested in his character's evolution and I sense some changes in store for him.

Of course I had to laugh when incest practitioner Jaime defends Loras and Renly's relationship with "you can't choose who you love." Ha ha.

I love how this story is so much more concerned with the people on the margins rather than those at the center of power or the center of the society. Women, illegitimate children, people whose physical attributes, social placement or age renders them undesirable or disrespected are the people who are at the center of every plot now. Of course once Ned Stark was killed at the end of Season 1, we knew we were not in a for a standard hero-driven narrative. I can't wait to see where Martin and Benioff et al will take us!

I'm curious. I started watching the show on demand last year, sometimes two or three episodes at a time because it was so compelling. Now it's driving me crazy to wait a whole week for each new episode! Some of my bookstore customers are telling me they're buying the third book because they can't wait for next Sunday. What about you? Are you reading the books? Have you read them? Are you so impatient for the next installment you're flipping the pages as fast as you can, or are you managing your Game of Thrones stress in a different way?

Comment! Let's talk.


Book Dilettante said...

I haven't been watching this as I'm not a fan of Gothic fantasy, as this seems to be. Glad you are enjoying it.

Zibilee said...

My husband needs to watch this! He is in the middle of the books right now, and then I am going to read them.

lizrose said...

After watching season one, I went out and purchased all five books. That was the most soul-sucking month of my life. I hope the show stays true to the novel and character arcs.

My main disappointment with the episode was all the foreshadowing going on, because I KNOW what happens it is not surprising that certain things are hinted at but to a friend who hasn't read the books, they got the foreshadowing clues dead on.

Enjoy the season.

River City Reader said...

I was so thrilled to see the Reeds! They show up in book two, so this was a bit of a delayed entrance for them. I loved the frame of Hodor, Bran and Jojen while Meera said "Some people will always need help." So perfect.

I was surprised by Cat's story about Jon Snow, since that wasn't in the books at all. And now I'm trying to figure out what it means, if it means anything at all.

This is my favorite book of the series, so I'm just so happy to see it play out on screen...changes and all.