Thrones gets succinct this week, remaining mostly in King’s Landing, with a smattering of the Eyrie and Winterfell. Plus: Gay dudes erotically (?) shaving each other! A penis! Shit generally getting pretty real!
It’s day 2 of the Hand’s tournament, and King Robert wants to join the joust, but his armour no longer fits. Ned convinces him the endeavour is pointless anyway, because no one’s about to beat the tar of their king (anyone who has seen A Knight’s Tale 20 million times already knows this though). Ned looks into the death of Ser Hugh the day before, and speaks to Ser Barristan, captain of the Kingsguard, about where a squire got the money for all that fancy (but impractical) armour. Ser Barristan, another honourable sort, of course doesn’t really have any useful information, and Ned fails P.I. 101: the good guys never know anything.
Anyway, Ned does actually attend the second day of his tournament, and Loras Tyrell, knight of the flowers, gives his daughter a rose for being the prettiest girl at the tournament. Sansa is of course smitten, and misses entirely the lusty look the young knight gives Robert’s brother Renly, who is right behind her (also the fact that Petyr Baelish all but says out loud that they are bumming each other). Then he cheats at the joust by riding a mare in heat in front of Ser Gregor’s stallion (I’m pretty sure this is the entire reason geldings exist), and the Mountain goes down, HARD. And gets up, PISSED, cuts the horse down, and tries to do the same to the young man. But Ser Gregor's brother, the Hound, jumps in and saves the day, and gives his victory to the Hound, even though he isn’t a knight.
Arya, in the meantime, is off catching cats like the good little Water Dancer that she is. Unfortunately, she doesn’t pay attention and gets lost somewhere deep in the castle’s dungeons, and finds out where the Targaryen’s dragon skulls are hiding. She also catches Varys and Magister Illyrio (He of the sponsoring the Targaryens in Pentos, the man who gave Dany the dragon eggs) scheming down there too, talking about the death of her father, and that war is coming because of what he’s slowly discovering about Robert’s bastards.
After the joust, Varys pretty much confirms to Ned that Jon Arryn was poisoned by his squire because of the questions he was asking about Robert’s bastards, and Varys and Littlefinger get bitchy in the throne room, trading barbs the way only bureaucrats can. You can tell Varys hits a nerve when Littlefinger blurts, “Does someone somewhere keep your balls in a box?” but Varys wins because he actually knows the King is coming to council that day.
Arya finds herself outside the keep and has an awesome scene where she sasses the guards who think she’s some kind of beggar boy. She tries to tell her father that she heard people in the dungeons talking about killing him, and he’s not quite sure if he believes her until she mentions the bastards. However, it’s soon forgotten when Yoren of the Night’s Watch enters the office, and warns Ned that Catelyn has arrested Tyrion. And then Ned is off to find the King to tell him about it when he finds out the king is actually at council for once, because he’s found out that Daenarys is pregnant. He wants them all dead. Ned is still firmly against it, because she’s a child and it’s not the honourable thing to do, even more so when he finds out Jorah Mormont is the source. Robert is having none of it, and Ned quits as Hand. Robert flips, threatening to kill him if he ever sees him again.
Ned rushes back his quarters and starts packing, ordering Jory to get his daughters ready to leave immediately. Petyr Baelish stops by to take him to see the last person Jon Arryn had seen before he was killed, and Ned, obsessed, goes with him. It turns out it was a pretty little blonde whore with yet another baby that looks like the King. Are we seeing a pattern yet? Because we should be.
And in case it wasn’t obvious enough, Loras and Renly are indeed lovers, and Loras likes his man’s body to be smooth as a baby’s bottom. Apparently Renly is a huge wiener who can’t stand the sight of blood. Loras is surprisingly skinny for a warrior. Loras suggests that Renly should be king, because apparently people like him, because he’s kind. In the books Renly is much more martial, but I think this portrayal does make more sense, for many of the reasons they talk about in this scene – Renly is a statesman, he’s been running the country for his brother, and he’s much too young to have been in any war. Even in the books this was the case. So I think it makes much more sense that he’s more of the smarter brother, more of a Tyrion than a Robert. Renly isn’t so sure about this being king business, since he is only fourth in line, but blowjobs make it all better.
Cersei offers her husband her “condolences” for Ned Stark quitting. They have a surprisingly touching scene where they discuss military tactics (and the consequence of a Dothraki invasion), as well as the state of their own marriage and lives. They actually can laugh about all the bitterness in their marriage, even though it’s far from perfect, what with the shadow of Lyanna Stark looming over it for 17 years.
Finally, it looks like Jaime finally heard about what happened to his little brother, and he’s out for blood. He attacks Ned Stark as he’s leaving Baelish’s brothel, and they have quite the little swordfight. It looks like Ned has the upper hand when one of Jaime’s men sticks him in the leg from behind, which even Jaime Lannister, Kingslayer, doesn’t find cool. Jaime leaves Ned bleeding out in the street (because that's totally fine), his men dead (Jory included), demanding the return of Tyrion. Not really much of a thinker, our Jaime Lannister.
Catelyn Stark was bluffing when she said she was taking Tyrion to Winterfell, to keep anyone loyal to the Lannisters off their trail. Instead she takes him to the Vale, lands of the late Jon Arryn, her sister’s husband, and currently where her sister and nephew have been hiding out since Jon’s death. Catelyn is also convinced that Tyrion had something to do with Jon’s murder, and thinks her sister will help bring him to justice. She hasn’t seen her in five years though, and Tyrion suggests she might not be the person Catelyn remembers. But first they get attacked by one of the hill tribes in the mountains of the Vale, and Tyrion is untied, and even saves Catelyn’s life by beating a man to death with a shield.
They swiftly arrive at the Eyrie, a beautiful round castle on top of a mountain. I was a little sad we didn’t get to see the journey up, because it sounds neat and scary (it involves donkeys, and getting pulled up in a basket). But anyway, Catelyn finds out that indeed her sister’s mental faculties are not all there, since she is still breastfeeding her 7 year old son. In front of everyone. Catelyn and Tyrion’s faces are kind of priceless, and Tyrion still manages to be awesome and sarcastic while proclaiming his innocence. It also turns out that little Robert Arryn is a piece of work, and Tyrion gets shoved in the SCARIEST CELL EVER that has no wall between him and the open air.
Bran gets pissed at his mother for leaving him during a lesson about the many noble houses of the 7 Kingdoms. He ‘forgets’ the Lannister’s motto, even though it’s kind of the easiest one to remember (It’s “Hear me Roar” little dude!), and is not fooled when the Maester tries to convince him that his mother will be home any day. Theon Greyjoy bangs the apparently hot Roz (she looks pretty beat to me), and she makes fun of him for his family’s failed rebellion and his diminished status as a result. Of course he doesn’t appreciate it. We also see his penis, although I didn’t even notice the first time I watched it. Roz kind of owns him though, by saying Tyrion Lannister is way more fun and better in bed (but I mean, he clearly is).
- Blood: 2, boobs: 3 (although one was fake). I have to say though, I do appreciate that at least all the boobs in this show seem to be real. Although apparently people were really upset about Lady’s implied, off camera death, so people are really going to be shitting about a horse getting his head cleaved half off on camera.
- Jaime Lannister really doesn’t like wearing his uniform, does he?
- Outfit of the week: No contest, Cersei’s pink number. I want that metal belt so bad.
- Also I don't mind that we didn't see the Wall or Vaes Dothrak this week. If anything it showed that this show is at its strongest when it can focus on only a few characters at a time as opposed to all of them. It definitely shows that the show would benefit from either a longer episode order or by having the books split up into more than one season.