There was a lot of talk of fathers on last night’s Mothers’ Day episode of HBO’s Game of Thrones.
But first, we must talk about what we lost this hour—two characters who are still alive in the books, neither of which will see any screentime going forward. Season 5 has been a bit slow out of the gate, but here at the halfway mark, things are, like Tyrion Lannister, looking up and becoming very unpredictable.
Which is good or bad depending on how much of a book purist you are.
Major episode spoilers ahead.
Spoilers for the currently published George R. R. Martin novels are discussed in the review and fair game in the comments. We highly suggest not discussing early preview chapters, but if you must, white it out. Have courtesy for the patient among us who are waiting and waiting (and waiting) for The Winds of Winter. Play nice. Thanks.
Before we mourn the untimely passing of Ser Barristan Selmy, let the book-readers among us say a final goodbye to Jon Connington. (Bear with me, TV-newbies.) When it became clear that Tyrion was taking the express train to Dany’s side, we figured Jon Connington and his “son” were being cut. Connington, as you might remember (or got a refresher on A Wiki of Ice and Fire) contracted greyscale rescuing Tyrion from a Stone Man attack along the Rhoyne.
Now it seems that Jorah Mormont is taking Connington’s disease in his stead. Ugh. This might be the first time I’ve felt bad for him. Will greyscale claim his life? Will he be cured, like Shireen? Greyscale is hard enough to cure in a child with a king’s apothacary at your disposal, so what hope does Jorah have? I loved that last week’s warm n’ fuzzy Stannis speech last week was also good foreshadowing. Those Stone Men were seriously scary.
So, over-under on Jorah living long enough to get in Dany’s good graces and see her on the Iron Throne one day? My guess is he will die tragically in the Friend-Realm and only then will Dany realize that she did love him all along. (Or at least that’s probably what Jorah thinks. Dying will sure show her.)
Selmy’s death certainly showed Dany that The Sons of the Harpy are serious. So, she came up with the outside-the-box idea to marry one of them in a bid for peace. I wish they had shown her take pause a little bit before she suggested this—she knows what it’s like to be sold into a marriage. Sure, she chose this path, but her hand was forced by the violence in Meereen. I’m sure we’ll see Daario’s reaction to this news next time. And I bet he won’t be happy about it.
Okay, I think I get Daario 2.0 now, after finally watching Michael Huisman in Orphan Black. (Binging on those leaked Game of Thrones episodes weeks ago gave me time to watch something new-to-me.)
Team Daario 2.0.
In the chessboard that is the North, players are readying their next moves and propelling everyone on a big colision course.
But all I can think about it that maybe we were wrong about Shireen escorting Sam and Gilly on their trip to Old Town’s Citadel. That trip was pretty much confirmed as impending, at least for Sam, as Maester Aemon is too frail to be Castle Black’s maester for much longer. Perhaps Shireen might have a shot to tag along when Sam’s company moves south? As much as I loved Davos (remember him?) and Shireen sharing a scene again, I want her to be far from her awful mother and Melisandre.
Meanwhile, at Winterfell, you can tell Jeremy Podeswa directed tonight’s episode because he worked on Six Feet Under and the Boltons are the heir to the Fisher clan’s awkward family dinners. (Imagine Ramsay Bolton trying to keep his shit together after taking psychedelic mushrooms for fun.)
I loved everything about Fat Walda in this scene.
But seriously, Sansa? Walking into the back of a kennel of angry dogs at the invitation of a weird girl you just met who also happens to work for the Boltons? Pack your badass feather shoulderpads away until you learn not to be a gullible dumbass. Anything could’ve been waiting there!
For an episode title taken from a pivotal bit of advice from Maester Aemon to Jon Snow, there really wasn’t much of him in the hour. But he’s making himself more unpopular than ever with his basic human courtesy—and strategic pragmatism—extended to the wildlings. I’m not nuts about Jon agreeing to go below to travel to Hardhome with Tormund in Mance’s place. I mean, he was just elected Lord Commander and probably should stick around and make himself more likeable to his constituents.
When even the loyal Dolorous Edd can’t forgive and forget what the wildlings did, you still have some work ahead of you under your own roof.
- Line of the night:
“If I gave everyone what they deserve, I’d have no one left to rule.” Cold, Dany. “Fewer.” – Stannis. Are we surprised that he’s a Grammar Nazi? Man, two weeks in a row and I’m loving this guy now.
- How cool were Old Valyria’s foggy, overgrown, eerily quiet ruins? So, I guess book readers can wonder if Euron Greyjoy was just making up the story of being badass enough to sail to the Doom of Valyria and survive? I was almost expecting Jorah to find a certain dragonhorn.
- So worth the wait to see Tyrion see his first real live dragon.
- About Drogon’s brothers? Poor babies. They didn’t seem to react to their mother’s visit at all.
- Why is Stannis the only one taking the Others seriously? Wish he had time to wait for more soldiers since he rightly predicted that Roose Bolton is getting plenty of time to prepare his counter move.
- Ending on a happy note, Missandei and Grey Worm finally kissed. Big “Awwww,” everyone. That was very sweet.
Next week: “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken.” Who cares about Dorne when Lady Olenna “Queen of Thorns” is back in King’s Landing?!
Game of Thrones airs Sunday nights at 9PM E/PT on HBO.
Theresa DeLucci is a regular contributor to Tor.com covering TV, book reviews and sometimes games. She’s also gotten enthusiastic about television for Boing Boing. Send her a raven through Twitter.