Game of Thrones rewatch: Season 1 episode 4 Cripples, Bastards, and Broken Things.

This is the 4th episode in the 1st season that is part of the r/asoiaf rewatch. Which is 1 episode per day until the premiere of the 4th season on April 6th. Link to the thread here: http://www.reddit.com/r/asoiaf/comments/201exy/spoilers_all_season_1_episode_4_cripples_bastards/ 

The comments in the thread have links to previous discussions of the rewatch of the other episodes.

Right at the end of this episode I went online and ordered “A Feast for Crows,” mostly because I had already read “A Storm of Swords” and was  fiending for more ASoIaF. Plus how bad ass was the ending of this episode? Perfectly done, awesome acting by Michelle Fairely, who I think was excellently cast for Lady Catelyn Stark.

As I said in previous posts, spoilers will be after the read more break, I’ve been mostly good with avoiding spoilers for the subsequent seasons and books. However, in order to have more to talk about I will not be trying to avoid them as much as before. So consider yourself warned, spoilers for subsequent episodes/seasons/books after the read more break.

The first of Bran’s green dreams are shown, the 3 eyed crow telling Bran where he has to hide to survive what’s eventually coming. I was a little disappointed with the show not showing all of his nearly prophetic dreams but I can understand why it was done that way.

Tyrion really does have a soft spot for the Stark Children, He really goes out his way to help Jon, Bran, and eventually Sansa. Robb bearing steel on Tyrion’s reception, a nice touch, bearing steel as some one is presenting themselves to the Lord of a hold is a warning that the Lord intends to not give “guest-rite.” Which is something that, in the books at least, Robb does a lot with those he captures in the Stark/Lannister conflict. Not for anything too menacing, just Robb making his intentions clear, namely his captures are not guests or hostages but his prisoners. Tyrion’s gift to Bran, allows him to at least be able to ride a horse in the future, something that Bran enjoys doing a lot.

Samwell Tarly’s introduction is well done, it also demonstrates that Jon Snow has taken Tyrion’s advice to heart. He help’s the other recruits with their swordplay. And hints that he realizes the importance of being “black brothers,” that the men at the wall are more than just members of the watch and defenders of the wall, they are brothers and part of a brotherhood.

The Khalasar finally reach Vaes Dothrak, Dany learns of why Jorah is in exile. That he sold slaves for an expensive wife and who ends up leaving him anyways for another man. She also learns that any army under the command of Viserys would not conquer anything in westeros and that the dothraki while powerful have never crossed the narrow sea. Jorah tells her that while King Robert Baratheon would be fool enough to meet the Dothraki in the field, his advisors are not fools and that he as fought beside them before.

The bathtub scene. An interesting setting for a very well detailed history of Targaryen Dragon Riders and the Targaryen conquest of westeros. Doreah, one of the handmaidens of Dany’s, reveals she has met a Faceless Man of Braavos, a pirate that could be either Salladhor Saan or mayhaps even Euron “Crow’s Eye” Greyjoy. Viserys names some of the more famous Dragons the Targaryen’s rode.

Sana and Septa Mordane in the court of Kingslanding and the Iron Throne, where she describes her fear of only having girls as children. Sansa’s realizes that her grandfather and uncle were murdered by the Mad King in the same room.

The first appearance of Janos Slynt, was well as that from Renly at least, he does not have the full confidence of the small counsel.

Pycelle and Ned have a discussion on what killed Jon Arryn and the book of family lineages of noble families. Ned learns the last words of Jon Arryn, “The seed is strong.” Ok I warned about spoilers before, consider this another, Pycelle is throwing Ned off the trail of Jon Arryn’s killer. Pycelle thinks that it was Cercei. Ned’s instincts about how and what the gender of the person who poisoned Jon Arryn but Pycelle misdirects him to thinking that it may be Lord Varys.

Arya training to become a “water dancer,” and her methods amuse Ned but does not take them too seriously. The scene also shows that Ned still thinks Arya a lady in training, and that she will someday become a wife to great lord run their house hold. Arya is concerned for Bran’s possible future, that his dream of being a member of the Kingsguard is over. Arya states to Ned, she does not want to be a Lady married to some highlord and resumes her training, while Ned looks away with an almost proud amusement and admiration at her declaration.

Jon and Sam on the wall, is great because we learn why Sam is at the wall taking the black and how unsuited he is for becoming a brother of the watch. Jon is moved by Sam’s story, he empathizes with sam’s situation almost, Tyrion’s advice to consider the situation of the others at the wall is something Jon takes to heart.

Littlefinger and Ned’s scene about Ser Hugh of the Vale and Gendry, the apprentice of the blacksmith. Ned learns from LF that a lot of people are watching and spying on Ned. LF reinforces the belief that Ned should not trust anyone, especially LF himself and how wrong Ned’s instincts on who to trust are.

Jory and Ned going to the blacksmith to discover why Jon Arryn went there, he meets Robert’s bastard son, Gendry. Ned realizes the meaning of Jon Arryn’s last words, that Roberts bloodline is strong.

I loved the scene with Jory and Jaime, there is an idea of what happened at the siege of Pike during the Greyjoy rebellion. Thoros of Myr is alluded to. Jaime’s instinct about Theon proves right, that he is not a good lad. The emphasis of Jaime not serving lord Stark, I think is telling, that he wishes he could serve some one like Ned.

Jon Snow realizes that people at the wall are his brothers now, and that he must protect those who can’t fight for themselves, especially Sam. Ghost is supposed to be silent in the books, he never growls or snarls, yet I think Ghost’s reintroduction is well done here.

Viserys show’s how much a impudent fool he is, he has no power, no respect due to him, he is nothing. While Dany has everything he covets, people are loyal to her, she has the respect of most, and she has something she belongs to now. She embraces her role of khaleesi, and has more confidence in herself and really puts Viserys in his place. That look of surprise on Viserys’ face is priceless.

On this rewatch during the scene with Jon and Sam scrubbing tables, I realized that they both fall for wildling women. Jon falls in love with Ygritte and Sam for Gilly. Jon lists of possible situations for his mother, interesting his first thought if she is a noble woman. He’s heard the tale of Ned and Ashara Dayne, or the fisherman’s daughter who ferried him north (in the books at least.)

Alliser Thorne describes what winter is like for those in the north and for rangers of the watch on the wall. Warns them to not really think of themselves as men of the watch because they are still boys. It illustrates that not everyone at the wall can be rangers.

Another great scene with Dany and Jorah, Dany realizes her brother will never be king and what the real thoughts of the common people. She learns Jorah prays for home, same as herself.

The tourney scene is one of the more larger departures from the books, I felt like it would have been better for the hound to tell his own story with the mountain because it reinforces the notion that there is something between the stark girls and the hound, Arya also has her own sort of interactions with the hound later, their contact with the hound shapes both the Stark girls characters later. It also is the first of Littlefinger taking the lines the hound delivers to Sansa. Later in the series, LF tells Sansa everyone is a liar in kingslanding and they are all better then she is, the hound says that to her before he offers to take her with him to flee the city and back to winterfell or her family. It introduces the hound’s older brother, Ser Gregor Clegane also called “the Mountain.” The scene is telling because when the Mountain kills Ser Hugh, everyone is shocked and terrified while Arya looks excited by it.

Ned and Cersei’s scene is also a nice insight into their characters, Cersei realizes that Ned is just doing his duty and notes that Ned’s brother Brandon was the one taught to rule and Ned is just a soldier. Ned learns how far Cersei will go concerning her children. It also shows how Ned has adapted to the role that was meant for this brother Brandon.

The ending scene is excellent, a perfect adaption from the books. Michelle Fairley great portrayal of Lady Catelyn Stark. Bronn’s first scene and introduction is also here.

The scene shows how greatly people regard the lady of winterfell, Catelyn notes the bannerman of her father and their importance. And then finally calls on all of them to seize Tyrion. Which has grave consequences and escalates the conflict between the Starks and the Lannisters into nearly open war. All on the misinformation of Littlefinger, he causes so much chaos for his own purposes.

The first season is a good adaptation of the first book, steamlines the story very well and still remains a very well layered story with amazing depth with a great amount of foreshadowing.

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