GAME OF THRONES Recap: Jailhouse Rock

by Sharon Mineo

Hello, Thronians. I’ve torn my eye away from the sky to talk Thrones with you; if I disappear partway through this you’ll know I’ve been swept away by a tornado. But I shall soldier on in the face of imminent doom to herald the wiping away of the shit-eating grin Cersei’s been wearing for some time now. I knew it was coming, but no doubt many of you are relieved to see it.

Things are progressing throughout the land. Jon and Tormund have departed the Wall to try to save the wildlings gathered north of the Wall at Hardhome, leaving Ser Alliser in command. Our beloved Maester Aemon is dying, urging Gilly to flee south with the baby. He knows he’s not long for this world, and he knows HBO’s in charge — and sure enough, shortly after his death, two of the Brothers try to rape Gilly. Our hero Sam tries his best to intervene but is getting his ass kicked, until Jon’s direwolf Ghost emerges from the obscurity of HBO’s CGI budget to scare off the attackers. Nevertheless, Gilly is not unappreciative, and the hottest couple in Westeros seals the deal in appropriately adorable fashion.

In Winterfell, Sansa is essentially a sex slave to her husband Ramsey, locked up by day and raped at night. She begs Theon’s help, trying to remind him who he is, but Ramsay has Reeked him thoroughly — he confesses, and Ramsay flays the serving woman who was trying to help Sansa. Meanwhile, Brienne waits in vain for the candle signal that Sansa needs her. Our only consolation is that Sansa seems to have snuck some sort of sharp object back with her. Ramsay Deathwatch 2015 is officially on!

Meanwhile, Stannis is not fairing so well on his march to Winterfell. People and horses are sick and dying, supplies are unreachable, and the clans are deserting. But Melisandre has seen herself walking the halls of Winterfell with the Bolton banners being lowered, so Stannis is determined to move forward — but at what price? Melisandre demands the blood of kings — and that means Shireen. Since this unknown HBO Stannis actually loves his daughter, that poses a problem. Does anybody really think this Stannis will commit Shireen to the flames?

In Meereen, Dany and Daario are enjoying their time together before she becomes Mrs. zo Loraq, and he urges her to simply marry him and burn all the Masters. Meanwhile, Tyrion managed to get himself and Jorah sold to the same fighting pit master, where they are set to fight in a local pit that will determine who is sent to fight at the great pit in the city. And — what a coincidence! — it’s a custom that the Queen visits the lesser pits, and she just happened to choose this one. Once Jorah finds out, he quickly dispatches the other fighters and reveals himself to Dany, and presents her with the titular Gift — Tyrion Lannister.

But we haven’t seen any boobs yet, so cut to Dorne, where Jamie is confronted by Myrcella, who has no desire to leave Dorne. Essemtially abandoned there, it’s been her home for the past few years, she loves Trystane, and is happy to marry him and stay put. Unlike anyone else, she’s been doing her duty, and doesn’t want the uncle she barely knows to screw it up for her.

Bronn hasn’t fared quite as well, locked up in a cell across from the Sand Snakes, but still bold as brass and not afraid to sing The Dornishman’s Wife. Luckily for him, Tyene is amused, and hasn’t been on the show long enough to negotiate a “no nudity” contract, so Bronn gets a show AND the antidote to the poison she sliced him with during last episode’s fight. And I didn’t even have to Hulk Smash anything because they killed off Bronn, so it’s a win-win.

But the most satisfying action by far this week took place in King’s Landing, starting with a showdown between Lady Olenna and the High Sparrow. Diana Rigg and Jonathan Pryce and worthy adversaries, and the High Sparrow is the first person we’ve seen who can daunt the dauntless Queen of Thorns. Is she going to have to ally with Petyr Baelish to get what she wants? What can he offer her?

Elsewhere, Tommen is pissed, but not smart, believing Cersei when she volunteers to intercede with the High Sparrow for Margaery and assures him that his happiness is her top priority. She makes the smuggest visit ever to Margarery’s cell, and to the High Sparrow — but he’s done playing politics. He has his Faith Militant, and he doesn’t need Cersei anymore. Alas, her short-sightedness finally pays off, as Lancel has confessed all, and Cersei is escorted to a cell of her own. And the non-book-reading masses cried out in joy throughout the land!

What did you think? What will be the fate of our incarcerated legion throughout both continents? Just about everyone is a prisoner of some sort: Sansa, Theon, Jaime, Bronn, the Sand Snakes, Jorah, Tyrion, Loras, Margaery, Cersei. What outcomes are you hoping for? Am I going to be tornadoed away before the day is out? Discuss among yourselves while I grab the cat and retreat to a windowless inner room.

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