Though last week’s instalment of Game of Thrones was a refined character piece, episode two upped the ante somewhat by throwing in heaps of action. The parting shot, in particular, has me extremely excited, but we’ll get to that in a moment.
Thus far season five seems more streamlined. The auxiliary narratives have been trimmed down, meaning that we are afforded multiple visits to one particular story, whereas in previous seasons most episodes have dealt with each story only once. But the show runners clearly know where they’re going – and what they need to do to get there.
As always, our top moments from ‘The House of Black and White’ are presented below, in no particular order.
The House of Black and White
Arya is a fan favourite and her season five storyline is set to please. Her journey through Braavos is beautifully portrayed as she see’s the wonders of this fishing city, but there is definite promise of malice hiding beneath the surface.
It’s heartbreaking to see Arya, defeated, recanting her list of enemies as she sits outside of the House of Black and White. Here she is entirely alone in a hostile place, though given that Tom Wlaschiha’s name was on the opening credits it was pretty obvious that the hooded man refusing Arya entry to the House of Black and White was Jaqen.
It was thrilling to see him remove his face later on, and claim that there is no Jaqen H’ghar. Of course there fucking is! But Jaqen has a history of being mysterious, so expect to see more mystery in the coming weeks. Whatever the case, it’s nice to see Arya has a comrade now. I’m excited to see her journey unfold.
And here is the action. After condemning a former slave to death for not upholding the peace (can I just say, as a side note, that the Sons of the Harpy’s masks really are creepy, especially with blood dripping from the eye sockets…) the other former slaves hissed when his head was taken. We’ve not had an epic speech from Dany since the finale of season three, and this speech did not disappoint.
It was clear that Dany was unsure as to what to do – she truly was caught between a rock and a hard place. Her decision was the wrong one, clearly, because for the first time in Game of Thrones Dany’s people visibly turn upon her, and it’s startling to see. Come the close of the episode Dany is defeated and shows little hope.
There is only one way she is going to appease her people now. Do I hear wedding bells?
The Small Council
I was wondering who would be the new Hand of the King, and it appears as though Cersei will be adopting the role, albeit without directly being named as the Hand. I thought this was a smart scene as it showed the role of women within the world of Game of Thrones: Cersei is not allowed to adopt a powerful position because of her gender.
Aside from cursing the bitch from Highgarden, Cersei was delectable as always. I simply adore Cersei and her acid-laced tongue. She firmly put the Small Council in their place when she appointed Qyburn.
I am interested to see what his experiments entail – just what the hell can one do with a dwarfs head? I suspect it’ll have something to do with the resurrection of the Mountain…
Sansa stays cool
I’ve really gone off Brienne, and I don’t know why. I want her to die.
Both Sansa and Arya have now refuted her help, so really what more can be done with her? Especially considering that the show isn’t going in the same direction as the novels … But I’m glad Sansa said no. I’m glad she’s sticking with Littlefinger, even though I don’t trust him one bit. He appears to genuinely care for her wellbeing – I just hope he doesn’t have romantic hopes because I don’t think I could stomach that.
So far, I’m liking the direction Sansa is moving in. I just hope it continues like this.
Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch
Jon was an obvious candidate to replace Jeor Mormont as the Lord Commander. Sam’s speech about how daring and brave Jon is was beautiful as it affirmed the notion that these two characters are brothers, despite sharing no equal blood. But whilst Jon is very much on top at the moment, expect things to do downhill drastically as he unveils his plan.
I can’t wait to see Jon refute Stannis. It’s bold and surprising that Jon plans on turning down becoming an official Stark and I just know that Stannis won’t be happy. But we’ve had teasers about Winterfell for two weeks now (and from the opening credits, it appears to have been rebuilt) so now I want to see it on screen. It’s time to revisit Reek, I think.
The Sand Snakes are a-coming
I was wondering how Bronn would fit into the equation this season, not that I am particularly excited by the prospect. Bronn has always been a character whom I can take or leave, but I love Jaime and I am excited to see him visit Dorne.
Speaking of Dorne, Ellaria Sand was positively pissed this week, though that isn’t surprising. We were introduced to Doran Martell, Oberyn’s brother – the biggest new character to be introduced this season.
Expect fireworks, because Doran is just as sneaky as his late brother. Princess Myrcella also briefly appeared, though you’d be forgiven for forgetting her. Myrcella is going to have an exciting season. ’Tis the season or Dorne.
The return of Drogon
What a tantalising end to this weeks instalment. After seeing her people run amok and pelt her with rocks, Dany sends her council and protectors away. She wants to be alone. But alone she isn’t.
I got goosebumps when I heard Drogon’s … mewling. Is that the right word to describe a dragon’s call? I have no fricken’ idea, but Drogon was gloriously recreated on screen. The closeup showed how much work has gone into crafting these dragons.
Dany was visibly ecstatic to see her favourite child once more and they almost reconnected. At least Drogon respects her more than her other two children, by which I mean at least he didn’t try and incinerate her! Fingers crossed Drogon is en route to meet with Tyrion now.