So far this season, there has been a shift towards personal growth. Whereas previous seasons dealt with horrific actions and horrific consequences, this season so far seems to want to spend some time on the spiritual aspect of characters. Who are the characters when they aren't defined by their roles?
And the funny thing is that there is no Bran...at least not yet.
Episode 43: "High Sparrow"
So in the Black and White House in Bravos, Arya is sweeping the floor and apparently a man crawls over to a pool and drinks some water. Arya is tired of sweeping and wants to know when she can finally start training for the League of Shadows. Next this girl comes to her cabin and starts questioning who she is. She says she's no one, as she wants, but the girl beats her. The assassin -- whose name I still haven't caught despite him saying it, so I'm calling him Red Sparrow, stops the girl, but points out that whole Arya claims to want to be a person without a name, that she still holds onto her possessions (and left wonderfully unsaid, her anger, and her desire for revenge). So Arya dumps all her clothes and even her sword, Needle, into the eater. Then she and the girl wash a corpse, and Arya is given a crash course in Westeros religion, and how how all the different gods are simply manifestations of the same god.
In the capital King Tom Thumb marries Faline and they share a night of marital bliss. He now suffers from the Lannister curse of nymphomania. The age difference between her and him is disturbing, as he's clearly no older than 15 and she's at least 28. At least Joffrey was closer to Faline's age and seemed to be above the age of consent. This is clearly very close to pedophilia.
Speaking of creepy couples with large age gap, elsewhere Sansa and Don't Trust Me, Bro are riding along until they reach the Dreadfort, Lord Bolton's home. Winterfell is under his control, and if the graphic in the beginning of the show is correct they've actually rebuilt Winterfell from the smoke and ruin.
But the real kicker is not where she's going obviously but that she has been promised to marry Ramsay Bolton, a.k.a. the artist formerly known as Jigsaw McGraw. Wow. Just when she escaped one crazy torturing fellow she now has to marry another. She protests but when Don't Trust Me, Bro insists this is the only way to keep her safe she decides to fold and meet her intended. I mean, she is the only thing left of Mama Stark, so I would think he has an ace up his sleeve. Ramsay, for good or for ill, actually behaves like he's a normal person, and Bolton lets Don't Trust Me, Bro know that he doesn't trust him.
At the wall, Jon Snow officially declines Stannis' offer and tells Stannis to go, and Stannis, being a reasonable fellow says he and his men will be gone soon. As his first act as Crowmander, Jon gives the bald coward who hid during the fight an offer he couldn't refuse. The bald coward refuses the offer, so they take the bald man down to the gallows and Jon Snow just chops off his head as the man pleads for mercy.
Yes, this is our HERO!
Ned hacked off a deserter's head. Joffrey hacked Ned's head. Daenerys hacked off an ex-slave's head. Jon Snow hacked off that bald man's head. Now Ned was the poster child for Honor Before Reason and Joffrey was a cruel idiot, but Daenerys and Jon should know better by now. By contrast, when any other authority figure ordered people to be killed, there was something more than "You failed me." Ramsay Bolton also falls into this trap, but at least he's supposed to be a clear cut bad guy. These two are supposed to be good-ish guys and now they're cutting off people's heads because they think it's right.
I really, really dislike Jon Snow now. If Daenerys had been in this episode, I would dislike her, too.
Consequently, one of the most likable characters in this episode is one of the vilest in the series. You see, religious fever has gripped the capital, and the Grand Priest is dragged out of the brothel by Kissing Cousin and other barefooted, sackloth-wearing folk. He goes before Incest Queen and demands that she do something. So she goes down to the leader of these religious fanatics and offers him the position of Grand Priest.
Wait a minute! She did inherit a brain cell or two from her father? Too bad she waited until he died to start using her mind instead of her babymaker.
But over in the eastern lands, Tyrion wants out of the caravan. Uncle Fester acquiesces and the two head to the city, where a woman in red preaches to the crowd. The Red Priest sees Tyrion, who goes to the tavern where people are dressed in Daenerys cosplay. I'm not being facetious. The whores here are purposely dressed as Daenerys. Mormont is here, drinking, but Tyrion does not spot him. Instead, Tyrion has succumbed to the Lannister curse of wanting sex badly.
However, despite Tyrion's spirit being willing to have a good time, his flesh is limp weak and he decides to go pee oout the side of a window, similarly to a scene from the first season where he pees over the side of the wall.
Mormont comes up behind him with a rope and wraps it around Tyrion, and tells him that he's taking him to Daenerys. And that's the end of the episode.
- So we're not supposed to question this election where Jon Snow is the leader for no reason other than he killed some people. Really? Sam is more qualified. He killed a White Walker and possibly saved a girl's life!
- Apparently this red priest worships Daenerys, and given that the religious sect is a fan of fire, this makes sense. Does that make Madam Red a rogue priestess?Interesting that the youngest Stark kids have gone to opposite sides of the world to try to find out who they really are, but Arya's quest is actually more interesting than Bran's because she has to earn her, while Bran gets magic powers that like Daenerys, rob him of a lot of the struggle.
- But where is Baby Stark? Where is MiniTaur? It has been over a season since I've seen either and I thought they were important characters!
- I can't wait for Sansa to encounter Reek. Maybe she will free him? Or maybe both will be locked in the kennel?