40 Days. 40 Episodes. Game of Thrones, S1E6

Well, I’ve passed the halfway point for Season 1. Maybe this won’t be so bad anyway. When I started this we were 40 days from the Game of Thrones Season 5 premiere and now we’re 34? Oh shit, there is a lot ahead. However, as my archives contain discussions for every episode from S3E3 onward, I won’t be recapping those. I’ll just tack on to the existing comments. It’s cool to see the pivot in the Season 1 storyline from this vantage point. Episode 5 ended with Ned getting knee-capped by Jaime Lannister’s men and it’s all downhill from here. Oh well, at least it all works out great for the rest of the Starks. So here we go, Episode 6…

The thing about Game of Thrones is that it’s really meant to be watched all at once. Spreading it out over 10 weeks is just cruel. Oh son of a bitch, I just started Episode 5 and watched through the whole credit sequence before I realized… Ok, back. Credits and theme song again. Dinklage, Peter Dinklage, Peter Dinklage, Peter Dinklage…

The most unfortunate thing about this re-watching of all these episodes is that I have to do it with my laptop at hand to make all the observations. I don’t want to write notes and then figure out what I was talking about later. So it isn’t a real pure viewing experience.

I forgot about the beginning of this episode. Ned comes out of his sick haze and sees Cersei and Robert standing over him. Cersei’s all angry about the capture of her brother she hates. She keeps up the insolence until Robert slaps the hell out of her. So maybe that was the final nail for him. She storms out and the room is just the two condemned men: Ned and Robert. “That was not kingly,” Robert observes about his own action. More insightful, he’s never been.

Robert pulling his mushy old drunk routine is terrible to watch. Now it’s Robert’s turn to pull that “We’ll talk when I get back” bullshit. Like, basically, if you live in Westeros and you have something to say to someone, just say it. Don’t hold anything back for later. Just, you know, a rule of thumb.

I also forgot about this scene of Dany putting an egg on the fire (not a euphemism). It’s a device to show she doesn’t get burned when she retrieves it. Because that’s it for that scene. Bran’s back in a dream walking after the three-eyed raven. Hodor wakes him up to show him his new saddle. As Bran gallops around, Theon advises Robb to raise his bannermen and go to war against the Lannisters. How they got the news of Ned’s skirmish so quickly is really remarkable.

This is the scene where Bran wanders off and the Wildlings get him. It’s notable for the introduction of Osha, the wildling lady who becomes his caretaker. Fun fact: in the books Theon’s sister is named Asha but they decided that would be too confusing for tv viewers so they renamed her. Finally, Theon’s archery pays off when he helps Robb kill all the wildlings except Osha.

Tyrion, meanwhile, is in that prison in the Eyrie where there’s no wall on the mountain side.

Arya has a lesson with Syrio but she’s not up to it because of the recent business with her father and Gary Cherone. Syrio pushes her into the lesson anyway. She’s good. This is the great lesson she learns: “There is only one thing we say to Death, not today.”

Cut to: Dany eating that horse heart. Truly, it’s disgusting in the show but in some way it’s WAY worse in the book where its taste and texture are described. Man, Viserys is so pouty about not having his crown. “Who can rule without wealth or fear or love?” Yeh, no one, Viserys, so get lost. It would have been pretty awesome to watch Viserys try to fight Jorah.

Tyrion’s trial is pretty amazing. When he starts confessing all those weird crimes. Everything but what Lysa wants to hear. If his point is to show how crazy Lysa and Robbin are, it sure works. Bronn’s shrug when he offers to stand for Tyrion. Pretty awesome.

Then Robert’s hunting with Renly, Barristan, and his wine-steward-guy. I did forget that Renly gives Robert some shit. It’s a pretty perfect example of the feeling we all get when stuck on a hunting trip with a drunk braggart.

I also forgot about the scene of Ned sitting in the Iron Throne listening to the complaints of all the common people. Ned is the Westerosi embodiment of the Peter Principle. He sends a bunch of dudes after Ser Gregor which is somewhat significant. They make it feel bigger in this scene than it really turns out to be.

In the Eyrie, Bronn makes mostly quick work of the dude who wore heavy armor to a fight against gravity. Bronn’s victory look in the trial is a scene that gets repeated in Tyrion’s Season 4 trial. Fortunately for Tyrion, Bronn isn’t as foolish as the Red Viper.

Sansa is super bitchy to her Septa. I also find this more tolerable than I did at first. However, she’s still totally willing to fall for Joffrey and his weak tokens of forgiveness.

Roz leaves the North for the riches of King’s Landing. Theon’s goodbye is honestly touching in its own strange way.

Ned tells the girls that he’s sending them back to Winterfell and then he starts poring over the big book again. Ok, Ned, let’s talk it through… every Baratheon has black hair… Joffrey, Tommen, and whatsherface don’t… Tears of Lys poisoned Jon Arryn… come on, you’re almost there.

The Dothraki are having a topless BBQ and Viserys shows up armed and un-topless. That totally pisses off Drogo. It’s a tense scene. Viserys is in top form. Drogo’s calm is terrifying as he promises Viserys a crown. “That’s all I wanted,” Viserys squeaks. And then, doom. “A crown for a king,” Aquaman says in perfect English.