“Too hot to die, to cold to live”
Well, we are back in the game now! This season of Game of Thrones is on, and the first episode has set the tone for the season, and the word is COMEBACK! Last season saw most of our favorite characters brought low: Sansa on the run, Brienne a ronin of sorts, Arya blinded and alone, Daenerys deposed and deserted by her dragons, Dorne just done, Cersei seriously screwed, and of course, Jon got snowed. But one can feel the scent of redemption in the air, despite all the blood in the water. Spoilers for episode one, “The Red Woman” are ahead!
“You got this”
Sansa, on the run from Ramsay, my favorite of all sociopathic, heirless, and angry bastards, is hunted down and captured, briefly, before Captain Phasma, I mean Brienne of Tarth, with Podrick’s help, comes to the rescue, cuts down fools like a boss (with them on horseback no less) and returns officially to the service of Sansa. This was a great scene, which I feel uplifted both of them, restored their purpose and has set them up for a comeback path, I hope, this season. With their escape, Ramsay, then, and Theon, have their work cut out for them this season in their continuing schemes.
The other Stark, Arya, is now punished for her selfish murder, a blinded beggar in the streets, and we see her brought to her lowest from the powerhouse vengeance machine of last season. But not all is lost, for in the streets, she is now viciously trained in combat by the House of Black and White, but why? How will she regain her sight and keep her sense of self? That shall be her comeback track this season.
Tyrion is surveying his “kingdom” so to speak, hilarious and enjoyable as always, and doesn’t get much play this episode. But his attitude is always one of aristocracy, and no matter how far he falls, I never really feel like he is down. He is planning his eventual rule and I can’t wait to see it. His botched conversation about wanting to eat vs. feed the poor woman in the street’s baby was laugh out loud funny, and the “walking on stones as if he owns them” line was masterful. I can’t wait for his arc this season!
Dany is brought to Dothraki castle as a prisoner, and is set up to be violated and mistreated. She stands proud and defies this fate, but despite her protestations that she is a queen and the mother of dragons, it is only her status as a widow of Khal Drogo that this culture respects, which is both revolting and a relief. So misogynistic and reductive a reaction! She is condemned to Vaes Dothrak to live out her says as a Khal’s widow. But Dany is resourceful and cunning and I’m sure has a plan to manipulate her way out, and hopefully her dragons were heed her call once again, and her come back will swift and fiery.
“Still fiery on the inside”
In one of the biggest wastes of talent for an opening episode, Doran just gets shanked in like two minutes. Alexander Siddig, of Star Trek DS9 fame, is serious talent, and I’m saddened by his loss. I was hoping for the whole Dorne thread to develop with him more over the course of this season, but well, I guess not. And his son? Gone too. Oh well, so much for that dynasty. Was everyone really against him? Was he such a bad ruler that no one could see this coming? I doubt it. Seems kind of a lazy way out for a plot thread they didn’t know how to work.
“I’m too good for this show. Beam me out of here, Chief O’Brien”
Cersei, who I’ve always loved to hate, and whose decline I watched with a certain amount of satisfaction, is now anguished over Jamie’s return, with a dead body none the less, and now even at her lowest, she still suffers for her children. I think her comeback will not be her own this season, but enabling that of her children and achieving vengeance through them. Time will tell.
“Ouch, my hair. (And my soul)”
And of course up at the Wall, Jon’s body is already cold, but is watched over and mourned by Davos and those loyal to him. The Night’s Watch reluctantly accepts the murder of their Lord Commander, and Thorne convinces them with shady logic that he is still loyal to the Watch because he kept them safe from what Jon was trying to do, even though he was sworn to be loyal to Jon. So it basically comes down to him saying “I broke the rules but trust me” which is some first class bull crap. So Davos and the loyalists are holed up and given an ultimatum to leave the watch or be killed, and we are all hoping Melisandre will work her magic, but not before, the the stunning nude scene at the end, what the red god is really capable of: photoshopping herself!
“Better red than dead”
She is seriously older than she appears, and what that may mean for her intentions and abilities is yet to be known. Will Jon make the ultimate comeback? And what of the walkers and those who live North of the Wall? We’ve got lots of season left! And Margaery can rot in the Sparrow’s prison for all I care 🙂