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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

Game of Thrones S04 E04: “Oathkeeper” (not much happens but still awesome)

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(previous: “Breaker of Chains”)

Did anything much happen this week? This episode felt kinda placeholder-y. I mean, Unsullied Guy is kinda in love with Interpreter Girl:

gots04e04.1

But we knew that.

Tyrion is still in the dungeon.

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But now we know that Jaime believes he did not kill Joffrey. And now we know that Tyrion knows that Joffrey was Jaime’s son. Ick.

Oh my goodness, Jaime:

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No.Wait. He’s a rapist. We don’t like him anymore. Damn.

Brienne is defo in love with Jaime. Cuz she looked back:

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But we pretty much knew that. And he might be a little in love with her, cuz he waited for her to look back:

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But we knew that.

Things we didn’t know: White Walkers need babies.

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This cannot be good.

Jon Snow is becoming a leader. So we can add him to the list of people who might potentially try to take the Iron Throne. Is there some reason why bastards can’t make a claim? I think not. If Robert Baratheon’s bastard was a contender, then so is Ned Stark’s. Right?

Okay, Bran and Co. were taken hostage by Crazy Fuck Burn Gorman. That’s new.

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Oh dear, and this is new: We now know that Little Finger and Diana Rigg were in on Joffrey’s murder together. Not terribly surprising. But interesting.

Oh, and yuck, Margaergy is working on seducing Tommen, and he’s, like, 12:

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These people. Unbelievable.

How is it that even when nothing happens on this show, it’s still completely riveting?

(next: “First of His Name”)


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  • David_Conner

    “Is there some reason why bastards can’t make a claim? I think not. If
    Robert Baratheon’s bastard was a contender, then so is Ned Stark’s.
    Right?”

    Well, yes and no. Westeros clearly operates under the rules of Agnatic-Cognatic Primogeniture (you learn all about this stuff if you play Crusader Kings II a bit….) The inheritance rules matter… unless they don’t, but even then you need *some* sort of claim. A strong claim (i.e., being the eldest acknowledged son of the prior king) without much power to back it up might very well lose out to a weak claim with a large army (or with several dragons.)

    Robert basically took the throne by right of conquest… but that alone, and he’d simply be regarded as a usurper. But he apparently had Targaryen blood on his mother’s side, which made him maybe the closest living relative to the previous king… admittedly, mostly because he killed all the other ones.

    Anyway, a bastard’s claim normally wouldn’t come into play, since they’re not *acknowledged* sons – that’s the whole point. But if the ruler has a weak claim himself, or just a tenuous grip on the kingdom? Maybe people would rally around a bastard. (This is why Joffrey wanted to kill all of Robert’s unacknowledged children.)

    Jon Snow would presumably only have a claim on Winterfell (and/or the “King in the North” title)… but an inferior claim to Bran and Rickon. None of the Starks would have any claim to the Iron Throne… unless (and I’ve seen a theory about this) there’s more to Jon Snow’s mother than we’ve been told. She was supposedly just some random commoner… but what if she was actually one of the Targaryens? Then he’d have a claim to the Kingdom of Westeros by blood. Though he’d probably need to pick up an army somewhere to have any hope of pressing such a claim….

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    After all the teeth gnashing last week about Jaime, I look at this week – with him sending Brienne off to find/protect Sansa – as the action that is inconsistent with his character. You can’t repay a debt to a dead person. I can see him vocally refusing to hunt Sansa down himself, but this is a step further than I’m willing to give him. It’s possible he’s overstating his sense of duty in order to get Brienne to go along with the idea, but I don’t view Jaime as being that cunning. Also, in love with the big, ugly, warrior woman? Really? Barf.

    Was Burn Gorman’s character played by someone else last season? Gorman definitely did not play the Watchman that Mormont threatened to get him to protect Sam on the march back to Caster’s Keep. And that guy wasn’t nearly the psychopath that Gorman is playing. Did they recast and rewrite the character, or did they add Gorman’s character out of nowhere?

    Also, given the insane cast of characters in these books, I’m not sure if I should applaud or roll my eyes at the idea that Jorah Mormont is the estranged son of the (former) Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch.

  • BrianJKelly

    Why “barf” about Jamie having feelings for Brienne? He’s slowly realizing that the beautiful Cersei is ugly on the inside… why not at the same time recognize that ugly Brienne is beautiful on the inside, and maybe that counts more?

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    So, beautiful is only skin deep, but ugly goes straight to the bone, except for ugly ducklings becoming swans. You’re not helping. ;-)

  • BrianJKelly

    *grin* “I’m not here to help – I’m here to mock.” =D

  • LaSargenta

    No, the saying goes “Beauty is skin deep, but stupid goes straight to the bone.” ;-)

  • Bluejay

    So, White Walker questions:

    SPOILERS

    They turn babies into White Walkers? Do they only do this to male babies, or is that just Craster’s selection method determining their baby supply? And so these babies grow up into adult, battle-ready White Walkers? Are they naturally that way, or do they undergo White Walker training? And what about the humans they kill, who turn into zombie things if they aren’t burned — are they proper White Walkers too, like the babies, or is there a difference? And since they have altars, ice-Stonehenge holy places, conversion ceremonies, some kind of horn-headed uber-White Walker priest or king to do the conversion — this seems to be a sophisticated society in its own right, not just some elemental “dark force” for the humans to fight. Are they actually evil, in a story that blurs the lines between “good” and “evil” all the time? Or will they turn out to be something more complicated and interesting than just the Monsters To Be Defeated?

    Actually, don’t anyone answer, please. I want to see what the show reveals on its own terms.

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