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rare female film critic | by maryann johanson

Game of Thrones S04 E10: “The Children” (OMGoT)


(previous: “The Watchers on the Wall”)

I watched much of this episode with my hand clamped over my mouth and “This cannot be happening!” running through my head. I may have gasped out loud more than once… and even Game of Thrones doesn’t usually make me do that.

I mean, Cersei did not just tell Dad about her and Jaime, did she?


And how is it possible that he did not already know this? He strikes me as a man who is as far from self-deluded as it is possible to be.

Well, he struck me. Tywin is no more. Killed on the toilet, like how Roger Murtagh did not want to go:


Could not have happened to a more deserving son of a bitch. Yay, Tyrion!

But wait… Was this really necessary?


I know Shae betrayed you and all, but this is not a woman with a lot of options in her life. Did you have to kill her? Look, it’s your brother Jaime whom we’re supposed to be wondering whether he’s a good guy or a villain.

Speaking of…


“I’m Jaime Lannister. I’m here to rescue you.”

(I found myself making a lot of snarky remarks along with this episode, just as a way to keep my sanity. Way too much awful shit happening here to deal with without a coping mechanism.)

And an actual moment of actual affection that has nothing to do with scorekeeping or manipulation or anything other than love.



Internet, please animate this. Oh, it’s already happened:

(That’s from Giphy.)

Could Jaime and Tyrion be the only two people in Westeros — or, at least, among those we’ve met — who love each other without any conditions or qualifiers? I think they might be.

I was as surprised as Jon Snow and the King of the Wildings when that horse-mounted army showed up north of the Wall. I presume Stannis just sailed into a harbor north of the Wall… but then, why can’t the people in the north just do the same thing, and sail south of the Wall, if they need to get south before Winter arrives? It’s not like — as we see very plainly in that battle scene set mostly in a forest — that there are no trees to build boats. How many thousands of years do they need to develop boatbuilding and marinecraft?

Did. Not. See. Coming:


I think until they actually drew their swords, I did not see this coming. And then it was all I could do to not shout at the screen. Cuz I was really worried about Brienne here. And then:


Not lamented. Though I did feel a little sorry for the Hound when Arya refused to put him out of his misery. He is not going to have a good death… though I suppose that was Arya’s plan all along. (Or maybe he’ll survive and show up again! Seems unlikely, though.)

So, now that Arya is following Brienne back to the Eyrie, will she be reunited with Sansa next season? Will the sisters even recognize each other anymore — not physically, but emotionally — with all the changes they’ve been through? Or will something else continue to keep them apart?

Oh, wait, that’s right: Arya ignored the Hound’s advice to join Brienne and instead is going on a long trip.


I’m not sure I understand the significance of the iron coin she showed the ship’s captain that made him suddenly cater to her. Does it represent the power of the Iron Throne somehow? I can’t imagine what else it could mean, but where did the Hound get it? (I presume it was in the bag of coins Arya took from the Hound.) It seems like a powerful token for even Joffrey’s former bodyguard to have. Or did Arya steal it from somewhere? Has this iron coin appeared before and I’ve forgotten it?

Do I want to know what the Dr. Mengele of King’s Landing is doing with the Mountain?


I don’t think so. Hey, maybe it’s just a blood transfusion, and with some rest and recuperation the Mountain will be back to his raping, head-squashing ways in no time. King’s Landing health care FTW!

(I had thought this stuff with the Mountain on the edge of death was going to be a way for Tyrion to get out of his death sentence. You know, if the Mountain dies, that’s counted at least as a tie for Tyrion’s champion in the trial by combat. But now that Tyrion is off on his own long voyage, I guess it’s all moot.)

Poor Daenerys is not having much fun these days. Not so good to be the queen when the slaves you freed wanna go back into slavery and your not-housetrained dragon is crisping little girls:


(One of the most pitiable moments in the entire run of the show so far.)

Also quite sad: chaining up the dragons in the basement.


And they’re not even the ones that have been misbehaving! Kudos to Daenerys, though, for taking responsibility when she could have gotten all regal and declared herself above her law. A dragon is forever, not just for Christmas!



But then, he’d completed his mission to get Bran to the land of creepy children and old men in trees that’s all sort of Dark Crystal meets Ray Harryhausen in The Fountain:





And here I thought this show couldn’t get any weirder.

Onward to next season! In 2015! Too far away!

(next: ????)

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