Kyle J. Steenblik

Game of Thrones: First of His Name

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As far as mid-season episodes go, this one was less bang and more a slow burn.  The past four episodes have been on about the same pace as well.  After three stellar seasons, I am inclined to trust David Benioff & D. B. Weiss but I am beginning to wonder where they are taking us.  I know we could cheat and look at the books, but that would be cheating, and we don’t cheat.  Honestly, it is hard for me to say I was disappointed by this episode, but I really was.  I was expecting more to happen; really this season has been much more like watching everyone walking around.  We have gotten spoiled haven’t we?  Now just in case you are feeling a little worries, I am not about to spoil anything for those of you that have not yet gorged yourselves on this delicious eye-candy.

The major events of this episode, which are actually very significant, are just not exciting.  We have a new king, and everyone has a good feeling about it.  The new king is going to have a gently used queen, and Tywin clues us into why.

Petyr Baelish marries Lysa Arryn, becoming lord of the Vale.  Lysa, who by the way is still a raging lunatic, lets on that she has a basket full of crazy and is more than willing to recount everything she has done for Petyr.  This seems to make Petyr pretty nervous because as it turns out he has been behind a few major events in the past few years.  He has also managed to sneak Sansa into the Vale with only Lysa and her son knowing who she really is.

Arya and The Hound have a brief duel by a river after The Hound learns Arya intends, one day, to kill him.

Podrick Payne proves to be an inexperience squire to Brienne of Tarth, but he is very determined to fulfill his oath.  This seems to endear him to Brienne, in spite of the flaming rabbit.

Daenerys decides that for the time being she will not seek to claim the Iron Throne.  Instead, she will practice her queening over the cities she recently conquered, two of which have reclaimed by slavers and a self-named king

While finally Jon and his band of Night’s Watch Rangers slaughter the traitors inhabiting Craster’s Keep.

As you can see, and if you have watched, the events in question are far from insignificant.  They just lack the drama we are used to seeing.  Dynamic political moves, and revealed plots just don’t set the screen on fire the way weddings do.  Fortunately, we now know we have another two weddings coming up very soon.  For now, we are once again left waiting for the punch line, and for the other ironclad boot to drop.

First of His Name was good, but I found very little to be overly-excited about.  Lots of moments where I went “oooOOOOooo”  but nothing that made me sit up and forget about everything else.

Game of Thrones Season 4 Episode 5 “First of His Name” directed by Michelle MacLaren, written by David Benioff & D. B. Weiss,  unfortunately only gets a 7 out of 10 from me.  All the good things I could say about are tempered by the lack of time spent with the most interesting characters.

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