Hello. AsimovLives here and I’m a regular sci-fi contributor to this website. But I also love Game of Thrones! So this is my series of recap articles about the episodes of the season 5 of HBO’s television series Game of Thrones, for your pleasure.
Game of Info:
Series: Game of Thrones
Created by David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
Based on the fantasy novel series A Song of Fire and Ice by author George R.R. Martin
Episode title: The Sons of the Harpy
Written by Dave Hill
Directed by Mark Mylod
Original Air Date: May 3 2015
Game of Synopsis:
Beware, spoilers ahead
The episode opens with the Dyson sphere globe of the world of Westeros showing the locations of King’s Landing, Winterfell, The Wall, Braavos, Meereen and Dorne, where the action takes place (Volantis not represented).
Ser Jorah Mormont makes an enforced purchase of a fishing boat and, in the first of the two funniest moments in this episode, casually throws Tyrion inside like a sack of potatoes.
Sailing through the coast of Essos, Tyrion, though gagged, manages to annoy Jorah enough for him to take the gag off. Tyrion, through keen observation and deduction, guesses who Jorah is and where he is being taken: to be presented to Daenerys at Meereen. Tyrion mocks Jorah’s plans, for he was heading there himself and that Jorah is as much danger of having his head chopped off by the Queen of Dragons, if not more so. Jorah seems to take Tyrion’s word into consideration and approaches him seemly to talk, but instead, in the second of the two funniest scenes in this episode, he does what no other character as ever done before: shuts up Tyrion -by slapping him so hard he rolls over.
On a merchant ship, Jaime and Bronn travel incognito toward Dorne. Bronn questions Jaime’s motivations, implying that a misplaced sense of guilt guides him toward what might be a suicide mission, because of Jaime’s involvement in Tyrion’s escape and the latter’s murder of Tywin. Questioned to what he will do when he next sees him, Jaime replies he will kill Tyrion.
Jaime and Bronn disembark on an isolated beach. Bronn warns the dornish patrol their coast quite thoroughly. Next morning they are found by a mounted patrol. Their story about being shipwrecked doesn’t convince the guards so Bronn takes action and attacks, showing his skill in combat by killing 3 of them. Jaime, on the other hand (no pun intended), has trouble fighting off just one guard alone and it’s a combination of pure luck and quick thinking that saves his life. Bronn doesn’t let escape another chance to mock Jaime for not yet learning to fight pragmatically.
Not far off, Ellaria meets the Sand Snakes, Obara, Nymeria and Tyene, Prince Oberyn’s daughters. She asks for their help in avenging their father’s death. Obara, the eldest, voices for them all their total commitment. They have discovered Jaime’s presence on Dorne through the ship merchant’s captain, who broke his vow of secrecy to Jaime for coin. For this, Obara rewards him with a spear thrown at his head.
Cercei gets rid of Lord Tyrell’s presence at the Small Council by sending him away to “negotiate better terms” with the Iron Bank, escorted *ahem* by Ser Meryn. Pycelle snarks the Small Council is getting smaller every day, to which Cercei retorts: “Not small enough”.
Cercei meets the new High Septon, the man known as High Sparrow. She plans to revive the Faith Militant, a former religious armed order disbanded by the Targeryens. Cercei orders the High Septon to find inequity in the realm and deal with the wicked, regardless of wealth or rank, where behind both hides the greatest of them all. “All sinners are equal before the gods”, proclaims the High Septon.
The Faith Militant quickly goes on their morality crusade all around King’s Landing attacking taverns and brothels, and arresting sinners, one of which is none other than Ser Loras Tyrell on accusations of breaking the laws of Gods and Men who is personally arrested by Lancel Lannister. It’s then made clear that it was for his arrest that the whole raising of the Faith Militant was for.
An irritated Margaery confronts King Tommen, who has no knowledge of Loras’ arrest. Tommen tries to have his mother revert the order, but she says it’s out of her hands, the Faith Militant only answers to the King himself. Tommen heads toward the High Septon to extradite Loras’ release, but the Septon’s guard blocks his access to the Great Sept under pretext the High Septon can’t be perturbed during his praying. His Golden Cloaks’ lieutenant offers to cut down the militants, but Tommen’s good nature and immaturity in dealing with matters of force makes him back off from the confrontation by leaving. Tommen reports his failure to Margaery, who leaves his presence in disgust, much to Tommen’s sense of helplessness. Margaery goes to whom she can trust to make things get done: Her grandmother The Queen of Thorns.
Selyse Baratheon continues to prove what a bitch and hag she is by putting down Jon Snow for being a bastard and Shireen her daughter with Stannis as a “weakness and deformity.” Stannis will have none of the put-downs. He is backed by Melisandre, who claims deformities and bastardy are no shame to the Lord of Light and in Shireen runs the same blood as her father, the savior anointed by R’hllor. Defeated, Selyse beats a retreat.
Stannis has to ride soon toward Winterfell to beat the snows. Melisandre is crossed that Stannis is putting his faith on Ser Davos instead of her, urging him to not make that mistake again (errr… what?). Stannis promises he won’t, for he needs her. She says he only needs faith. Stannis asks her what she needs, she replies “to serve my lord,” while looking at Jon.
Samwell gives missives for Jon to sign as Lord Commander asking the lords of the North to provide men to help man the Wall in help of the depleted Night’s Watch. The last document gives Jon pause as it’s addressed to Lord Bolton, his brother Robb’s traitor and murderer. Samwell convinces him that duty must overcome personal feelings, to which Jon reluctantly acquiesces. He’s then visited by Melisandre who also tries to turn Jon to be an ally of King Stannis. Jon again refuses to take part in Stannis’ fight. Melisandre goes for her best trick by attempting to seduce Jon by disrobing and promises of immediate sex. Jon resists her, for he’s still in-love with another – Ygritte, even in death. Melisandre is taken aback to this surprising resistance of her charms, but before she leaves, she drops an emotional bomb on Jon by saying “You know nothing, Jon Snow.” He is left utterly shocked and speechless.
Shireen visits her father. The reserved and emotionally stunted Stannis proclaims his love for his daughter by recounting how he never gave up on her when she contracted greyscale, a deadly disease which was treated by Stannis’ tireless efforts to get the best physicians in the realm for her. Shireen, probably for the first time in her life, knows for sure that one of her parents truly loves her and embraces her father, who embraces her back in a show of genuine affection.
Littlefinger finds Sansa in the crypt of her forefathers. He came to say his goodbyes, for Cercei summoned him to the capital. He assures her that she has now all she needs to take care of herself; she is strong and can deal with her enemies all of her own. “The North will be yours,” he promises her. He kisses her goodbye, like a last kiss.
Ser Barristan recounts to a bemused Daenerys his memories of his days spent with her brother Rhaegar. But state business waits her: Hizdahr zo Loraq, voicing the words of the former masters, again begs to have the Fighting Pit re-open.
The Sons of the Harpy make a concerted surprise attack on both the Unsullied and the Second Sons on the streets, killing dozens of them. Barristan hears the commotion and runs, arriving in time to relieve a nearly overwhelmed Grey Worm. Both men kill dozens of their attackers, Barristan proving his fighting skill is not merely fame from the past. But even he is overwhelmed by numbers and badly wounded. Grey Worm, also badly wounded, manages to kill the last assailants and falls next to a bleeding Barristan.
Game of Opinion:
Carice Van Houten disrobes again for this series. Bless her.
We have been constantly told what a badass Barristan is, this episode we finally manage to see him in action and he doesn’t disappoint. He and Grey Worm cutting down enemies was a joy to watch.
The most emotional and moving scene this season yet is of Stannis professing his love for his daughter. The acting is phenomenal by both actors.
Few things scare me more than empowered piety. Game of Thrones now also has the Faith Militant. As if the followers of the R’hllor weren’t enough!
Lancel finally found his badass in religious devotion. But he’s still an ass, still an idiot, but a pious idiot, the most dangerous kind.
Cercei is so arrogant she believes she can play everybody to her whims, even fanatics. It’s known those who have tried to use religious fanatics for their interests have always had it backfired for the simple reason that fanatics only have one covenant: to their own interpretation of faith and God. Who are not like them are their enemies, even their secular allies. At best they are sinners who should someday be brought into the fold as misguided children by force if necessary, at worst as abominable perfidy to be cleansed by blood.
Cercei releases the sinner hunters on Loras on accusations of perfidy (his homosexuality) to punish Margaery. But she is forgetting she’s an adulteress, with her brother no less, adding incest, twice the sinner. And from the relation she had children, who the pious will see as abominations. And Lancel knows all this!
I left the best for last: the teaming of Jorah and Tyrion, my favorite characters in the show, now sharing a scene together! I couldn’t have asked for better. They were the comedy highlight on quite a gloomy episode. It’s a testament to how much I like Jorah that a good way to make me hate a character is for him to mistreat Tyrion. Yet Jorah’s harsh treatment of Tyrion made me roll with laughter. These two together is pure gold and I hope to have a lot more of them in the next episodes.
Game of Predictions:
- The Faith Militant will turn on Cercei when she less expects. The Queen of Thrones will see to that.
- Littlefinger is not for long on this show.
Game of Final Thoughts:
Another killer episode, made special by teaming Jorah and Tyrion.
As always, thank you for reading. See you at next week’s episode Kill the Boy.
This is AsimovLives, signing off. Have a better one.