Game of Thrones: Season 4/ Episode 1 “Two Swords” [Season Premiere] – Recap/ Review (with Spoilers)

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Overview

The show returns with many having distrust in each other, with most of it naturally warranted.

Review (with Spoilers)

Eventually I do plan to read the books, because so much happens in just one episode, that it is hard to even fathom what may have been cut out. That aside, most of the favorites are back for the season premiere. Tyrion meets the newest character, Oberyn Martell; Jaimie deals with the disappointment, you could say, of his return; Daenerys continues her march as freer of slaves; Sansa and Arya uniquely deal with the death of the majority of their family; and we even get to see Jon Snow.

Topic 1: Those in War – Jon Snow & Daenerys

To begin, let’s start with Jon Snow. With his return comes a trial for his betrayal of the night’s watch. And no mercy is given to the bastard, even with news of Robb Stark’s death and the red wedding causing him grief. However, with Rob’s defense being he was ordered to kill Qhorin, a season or two ago, and this was to infiltrate the wildlings, he builds his case. He reveals they have united under Mance Rayder, and that they have surpassed the wall. Also he reveals he has had sex. Either way, thanks to the information, and Master Aemon saving him, he is allowed to live.

Moving to Daenerys, her dragons have become teenagers, and with this they have become harder to control. This leads to the realization they are loyal, but not servants. Still though, she has bigger things to worry about then her dragons. For one, between Daario Naharis and Grey Worm, there seems to be quite a fight to ride alongside the queen, a battle which doesn’t amuse her in the least bit. However, Daario does present something Grey Worm can’t, and perhaps that is perhaps strategy beyond the concepts of war. He brings the idea of Daenerys to familiarize herself with the culture of the people, and not simply be as most who rule in ambivalence. Mind you, this is done while flirting.

Topic 2: Those in Peace – The Lannisters & Tyrells

In King’s Landing the wedding is only but weeks away, and it seems very few are excited about it. Sansa is consumed with grief, of which only a gift from Sir Dontos eases slightly; Jaimie is having a hard time from his family for between being captured, and having one hand, he is beginning to receive a similar type of admonishment as Tyrion has since birth. Albeit, Tywin still loves him enough to ask him to be lord of Castley Rock, and accept his refusal, but with Cersei giving him the cold shoulder, Joffrey mocking his lack of accomplishments, and Brienne on him about not taking Sansa somewhere safe, no one is really in his corner right now.

But, while the Lannisters deal with internal issues, the Tyrells are almost solely focused on the wedding. Olenna especially since she seems more vested in it than Margaery. However, even with the joy of the wedding, Olenna finds no peace in her surroundings. For, after spats with Tywin, it seems she finds herself very cautious of things she says, much less what Margaery does. For the most part though, both are in some sort of marital bliss.

Topic 3: Those Seeking Vengence – Arya & Oberyn

Leaving us with Oberyn and Arya. Let’s talk about Oberyn first since he presents a more compelling story. You see, Oberyn, and his house the Martells, are very much an odd wedding guest. Their family used to be part of the royalty of King’s Landing, well until the Targaeryn king replaced Oberyn’s sister. But perhaps what is worth noting the most is what happened during the Sack of Kings. During this uprising, as Targareyn children were massacred, so was Oberyn’s sister Elia, the former queen. She was raped and split in two, and with the Lannisters being a key element of the destruction of part of his family, he warns Tyrion, who is to welcome them, that it isn’t just the Lannisters who repay their debts.

Lastly, there is Arya. With her family, for the most part, dead, and her stuck with the Hound, she finds herself in a weird limbo. She is stuck with a man she rather despises, and yet has a good enough relationship with to trust with her life. As for the Hounds point of view, with Robb dead he just continues moving around the Stark line and now plans on taking her to Lysa. But, that isn’t before a little revenge. Before the intro plays they remind us of all the twist and horrors before this season. One of which is Polliver killing Lommy with Arya’s sword, given to her by her brother. In this episode, Arya gets her revenge, with the Hounds help, and retrieves perhaps one of the few items remaining of her once noble house. Leaving her with two more to add to her body count, and an almost Ellie and Joel, from The Last of Us, type of relationship between her and the Hound.

Things to Note

Shae is growing tired of being the other woman in Tyrion’s life, and is becoming so uncouth about it that one of Cersei’s snitches finds out about their relationship.

Speaking of Cersei, she speaks of having symptoms, making me wonder if she maybe pregnant?

We do get to see Ygritte and the Wildlings as they encounter a new type of wildling who looks like the Persian emperor from 300.

Daenerys and her team are venturing toward Meereen currently.

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