Episode 50: "Mother's Mercy"
The Pedo Knight is at it again, now picking three girls to whip and scare before screwing them. The first two girls flinch but the third one does not. That's because this girl is Arya who has disguised himself as a member of the jailbait bunch. She attacks him and she kills him in a scene out of Hard Candy.
Daenerys wakes up in a far away land where the hills are green and her dragon has apparently fricasseed his meal. She tries to get him to let her ride him again to take her back to Mereen, but he stubbornly refuses and as a result she has to walk down the hill and look for help. To her surprise she is soon surrounded by Dothraki raiders and she slips off her ring.
Elsewhere in Mereen, the gang (Tyrion, Mormont, Dario, etc) is waiting around and wondering what to do like the cast did when Terra took off in Final Fantasy VI. Grey Worm arrives and although he is walking he is clearly bandaged up and not in the condition to fight. As a result the party decides to split into two. Tyrion, Grey Worm, and Missandei stay behind to govern Mereen in Daenerys's absence while Dario and Mormont leave the city to go after her.
Of course Mormont didn't say anything about having the dragon pox, and I don't think he has much time left.
But back in Westeros up north Stannis receives even more bad news. Half of his troops have left him taking his horses. Also, his wife has committed suicide as she was overcome by last-minute guilt for allowing Madame Red to kill her daughter. On top of that, Madame Red leaves the encampment, so Stannis leads the charge on his own with his reduced men.
Things are also happening inside Winterfell. There Sansa Stark is able to put a candle in a designated area for a signal for help. Unfortunately she's caught by Side Chick and Reek. Rather than cower Sansa defiantly stares at Side Chick. Reek starts to recover his identity as the Waterboy and pushes Side Chick off the side of the wall, splattering her head against the ground below. Now at least temporarily free from brainwashing, the Waterboy and Sansa run to the wall, and when they see the edge of the wall is high, both of them make a flying leap and no one knows what happened to them after that.
Back on the battlefield Stannis's forces or overwhelmed by the large majority of Lord Bolton's forces. It is a massacre. Stannis himself is barely able to stand after all this fighting but he still fights off two enemy soldiers. So who does he see that will send him on his way to the Reaper?
It's Sergeant Calhoun.
She announces her name and recounts that her liege, Young Buck, was killed by a shadow with his face. Stannis faces death with dignity and she executes him. If only she'd been able to do this before Shireen had died.
And speaking of death there is the matter of Dorne. Prince Bashir and his family send Incest Charming and the crew on a boat back to King's Landing. On the boat, Incest Charming tries to confess to NieceDaughter, but she said she already knows he's her father. However she begins to bleed from the nose and yet another Lannister child dies. Meanwhile on the shore in Dorne, Oberyn's wife, drinks the antidote to the poison that she had administered.
That was overkill. I mean we just had Shireen get killed last episode. Do we need to kill every "princess" in the land?
But we aren't done with child suffering yet. You see back at the Black and White House, Arya is discovered putting a face back into the face vault and both Red Sparrow and the girl sidekick both discover her. Because Arya has taken a life without permission, another life most substitute and Red Sparrow takes the poison and seemingly dies. However, it turns out that the girl was Red Sparrow, and in an awesome scene Arya snatches the face of the following corpse only to reveal another face and continues doing it until she sees her own face. Then all of a sudden everything goes dark for her.
But for all of these terrible, awful developments comes a ray of light in the form of consequences. Incest Queen goes before the High Sparrow and says that she is willing to confess. However she only confesses to her infidelity with kissing cousin, not her infidelity with her brother. She then (unconvincingly) asks for the Mother's Mercy. The High Sparrow does agree to let her see her son, but on one awful condition.
Actually two awful conditions. The first condition is that her long hair is cut off.
The second is that she be paraded through the entire town naked, with guards to escort her and keep the people out of the way. One of the nuns would walk with her and ring a bell and would yell "Shame!"
And this is what happens. The crowd is furious and throws things at her in some people actually flash her, but she is able to keep walking.
It took 50 episodes but I finally learned what this meme is about.
I do have to admit Lena Headley has done an excellent job of acting. As much as her character deserves this and more, you can see Incest Queen trying to keep an upper lip but yet retaining a vulnerability that she only displays in her private moments. Thankfully you never get the impression that she is sorry; quite the opposite it is evident that just like her son she is incapable of remorse. Yet the actress leaves just enough humanity to make her pitiable. The direction and writing, though, piles it on with her feet getting bloodied in the walk. These details make the scene seem as if trying too hard to make us feel that this is going too far, when the actress's performance sells this alone.
But there is light for a queen at the end of The Walk. One of our council members wraps are in a blanket and presents her with a new member of the Guard, the Mountain! And with a hateful look in her eyes, she is out for revenge.
Still the public humiliation of the woman who is caused about all of the trouble that we have seen so far would be perhaps the best part of the episode, right?
No, the best part is The Wall.
Madam Red comes trotting through the gates of Castle Black. When asked about Stannis and Shireen she doesn't give an answer, indicating that they both died but not displaying her role in their deaths. But late at night when Jon Snow is looking at more paperwork, that Oliver Twist comes in and tells him that one of the Wildling prisoners has news about his missing uncle.
So Jon Snow follows the boy to the supposed prisoner only to find a cross marked "Traitor." Yes this is a setup and a lot of members of the Survey Corps surround Jon and led by Mr. Grumps, they stab him one by one. Even the boy stabs him. Then they walk away and he lies bleeding out on the snow.
This is the perfect end for this character. His goodness gets him killed. His failure is a reinforced with that he was never meant to lead. And it caps off a very bleak season in which all hope for the future seemed to die.
Too bad pop culture has ruined this moment for me, because Jon Snow definitely deserves to die.
- It seems to be ambiguous as to whether or not Oberyn's widow was following assassination orders from Prince Bashir, or if she did this to defy him. One would think it's the former which is supposed to cast everything said in the previous episodes in a new light, but it could also be the latter and she could be just a duplicitous snake.
- For all my gripes, though, this show is so much better without Bran Stark and Baby Stark. I do miss MiniTaur. I hope he didn't die at sea.
- I am really worried for King Tom Thumb now. This show has run out of teenage girls to kill, since the Starks have contractual immortality. Is about time for this boy to die and I don't want another child to die. You're killing all of your Future Leaders off you know, writers!