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A 30-something living in the foothills of the Virginia mountains; I'm saved by grace, addicted to coffee and my little sister is my best friend! I devote most of my time to exploring, reading, attending as many Nationals games as possible and documenting life here. My Prince Charming got lost somewhere along the way...but I'm trying to remain hopeful that true love exists.

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Monday, April 7, 2014

Game of Thrones - Two Swords

Game of Thrones is back! I'm one fairly excited girl because in my humble little opinion, Game of Thrones is no doubt one of the best shows on TV. I do love reading all the recaps people do and I thought I would go ahead and do my own - because I'm confident enough that maybe one or two people will find it fascinating and that's good enough for me.

I would mention I probably should have committed to recaps long before season four, but I didn't...so if you want to know what's been going on in Westeros and across the Narrow Sea before now...well, maybe go get a subscription to HBO and set aside 30 hours of free time to cram your brain. Ha-ha!

Yes - there are this many people in the cast...actually there are lots more. This doesn't even scratch the surface, but I guess these are the more important characters....except - where is Arya?
In Westeros

House Lannister (The Half-Man Edition) - Tyrion is assigned to a meet and greet with Prince Doran Martell of Dorne but is told by the Prince's men that not only did he not come (he sent his younger brother Oberyn in his place) but Oberyn has no use for welcoming parties and has already entered the city to find his own amusement. Tyrion finds him in...a brothel, of course. The two have a pleasant (read: tense) exchange and Oberyn reminds him that Lannisters aren't the only ones why pay their debts...but more on that later.

Tyrion also tries to cheer up his new wife, Sansa by telling her nice things about her brutally murdered mother and brother...but shockingly, since they were killed at the hands of Lannisters, she's really not having any of it. She retreats to the Godswood not to pray but because no one will bother her there - while in the Godswood, she is gifted with a necklace by the King's fool, the former Ser Dontos. Tyrion is tempted by his mistress Shae but because he values both their lives, he rebuffs her and she storms out of his rooms - which is witnessed by one of Cersei's handmaids.

A match made in...wait, no...maybe not.

House Lannister (The Twins Edition) - Jaime Lannister just can't catch a break; that's a definite theme: his father Tywin gives him a new sword but wants him to go home, have babies and stop doing the one thing he actually likes - being a knight (or as Tywin says "a glorified bodyguard). Jaime tells him no and you get the sense that Tywin doesn't hear that word to often. Jaime is re-buffed and belittled yet again, this time by Cersei who tells him he took too long to get back to her and he's changed too much; he's not what he once was, which allows him to point out that it wasn't exactly like he wanted to be held prisoner for over a year and then have his sword hand cut off, but whatever. Cersei has always been awful and I think Jaime might be starting to figure that out - which is a good thing because those two together breeds....well, Joffrey...

Joffrey also gives his "Uncle" Jaime attitude, telling him that as a 40 year old, one-handed knight he has no time left to do anything of worth and he can't possibly protect him with just one hand. Outside the family, Jaime and Brienne discuss the vow he made to protect the Stark girls and while Jaime tries to argue that no one has seen Arya in years and Sansa is now his sister-in-law, Brienne makes him promise to keep his oath. Jaime smartly replies that she must be a Lannister because every Lannister he's come in contact with since his return to King's Landing has been a remarkable pain in his ass. Ha!

Cersei is having none of it - even if you do have a fancy new golden hand.
House Martell - Welcome to the cast newbies! Prince Oberyn Martell arrives in King's Landing for Joffrey and Margarey's wedding and quickly makes his true motives known: he wants some revenge. While trying to choose some afternoon "company" at one of Littlefinger's brothels, he encounters some Lannisters singing the ever popular tune "The Rains of Castamere"  and he happily puts his knife through one's wrist before Tyrion intervenes.

He reminds Tyrion that he's been to King's Landing before for another wedding - when his sister Elia married Rhaegar Targaryen years ago. When the Baratheons overthrew the Targaryens...with the help of the Lannisters, Gregor Clegane brutally murdered his sister and her children, at the command of none other than Tywin Lannister, Tyrion's beloved father. As mentioned above, he politely reminds Tyrion that Lannisters aren't the only one who pay their debts - so that sets up some warm and fuzzy moments to come, no doubt.

Prince Oberyn and his paramour, Ellaria Sand. I need to take a vacation to Dorne - those folks have really good tans.
House Stark - No sight of Bran or Rickon this week, so that only leaves us with Arya and the Hound. I'm not even kidding, they could make a TV show out of these two alone. They could call it Road-Trippin in Westeros with Arya and the Hound - I'd watch it. Arya wants her own horse because she's tired of riding with the Hound, apparently he reeks. The two stumble upon an inn on the road and Arya recognizes one of the patrons as Polliver, the man who stole her sword Needle way on back at the start of season two.

Nothing doing but Arya is going to get that sword back and so after some very tense banter between the Hound and one of the patrons, all hell breaks loose and the Hound unleashes his sword. Arya cowers at first but before long, she gets in on the action and starts exacting her own brand of revenge. She gets her sword back and then uses it to impale Polliver in the neck, just like he did to her friend back in season two. She smiles as she kills him which is both unsettling and kind of victorious - she's quickly becoming someone that you don't want to mess with. As the show ends, she gets her wish - she has Needle back and she has her very own pony!

Road-Trippin with Arya & The Hound: There Will be Blood...
The Wall & The Wildlings - Jon Snow is called before a council to list all the ways he broke his oath to the Night's Watch but in a surprising (and splendid) turn, Jon lets the council know that he may have made plenty of mistakes but the things he witnessed while he infiltrated the Wildlings is of great value to them. He also tells them that Mance Rayder is marching on the wall with 10,000 wildlings; which they all scoff at, all with the exception of Maester Aemon. Jon gets to keep his head this time, but suffice it to say that plenty of his brothers on the Wall aren't so happy with him.

South of the Wall, Ygritte is working on some arrows - she didn't kill Jon when she had the chance but when the Wildlings attack the Wall, she'll be ready. He betrayed her and she won't make the same mistake again. The Thenns arrive and talk all about how well-fed people South of the Wall are, which seems odd for a few minutes before it's revealed that, surprise, surprise...they're cannibals! Which isn't honestly that shocking. What's more shocking is that it's taken four seasons for the show to introduce cannibals - I mean, we've had everything else. 

Meeting some new friends...
Across the Narrow Sea

House Targaryen - Daenerys enjoys some cuddle time with her largest dragon until his brothers return with a large, bloody goat. She tries to calm them as they begin a feeding frenzy and almost gets her hand taken off when Drogon snaps at her face. Jorah tries to tell her that dragons cannot be tamed - even by their Mother. She might do well to listen...

Daario Naharris does his best to flirt, giving Daenerys flowers from the region of Meeren, the next city on the list of places to liberate and conquer. Dany tries to act like she's not interested, but we all know Daarrio is already winning her affections. The line of Unsullied stop to reveal to her a crucifed slave child, pointing the way to Meeren. Jorah tells her there is one at every mile on the way to Meeren - all 163 miles. Daenerys tells her soldiers they will give each child a proper burial as the come to them and they continue on their way to Meeren, with Dany's anger all fired up!

Those dragons...girl, they be getting big...

All Those Other Houses - Margaery Tyrell and her delightful Grandmother Lady Olenna have great fun choosing jewels for Margaery to wear for her wedding; each woman then has their own delightful exchange with Brienne - it completely cracked me up that Lady Olenna made the point that Brienne was absolutely marvelous. Tywin made fancy new swords from Ned Stark's greatsword, Ice - one of which he gave to Jaime...the other we'll see go to Joffrey next week.

Just having some girl talk...

No sign this week of Bran Stark or little Rickon Stark, thank goodness we didn't see Theon Greyjoy (or Reek, as he's now called) or his tormentor Ramsay Snow - I just can't handle another season of torture; that stuff makes my skin crawl. Also absent this episode were Littlefinger and Varys, but I'm sure they were plotting something just the same. Also no sign of Yara Greyjoy and her men - I'd assume she's still sailing towards Westeros to save her little brother...although poor Theon may be too far gone. Happily, also no sign of super dull Stannis and his crazy sidekick Melisandre...however based on the preview, I feel certain we'll see them next week.


The season is already off to a quick start; for a show that usually takes a couple weeks to get going, this season has already started at a brisk run and I get the feeling it will only pick up speed from here. I read Saturday that this season is the one that you need to watch as it airs - the action will be constant and surprising each week. We've grown so accustomed to the ninth episode of each season being the "big" one but season four promises to have more than just one "big" moment, so I'll be watching closely!


Until next week - Jaime says good-bye....proving a solid gold hand is good for more than just arm bling.

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