Kyle J. Steenblik

Game of Thrones: Valar Dohaeris

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[p]impThis damn show, I always feel like I need to take notes.  I find myself watching two episodes at a time, last weeks, and this weeks, just to keep up.  Well not just to keep up, it’s a damn good show.  I’ll rewatch the entire season when it’s over, in one sitting if I can.  If you have the means, I highly recommend watching, or re-watching season 1 and 2 before jumping in here.  If you don’t remember what happened in those seasons, I can’t help you here.  Well I could, but I won’t.  I’m just not that nice of a person.  Ok I’ll remind you, a bit.

If you want to read the books first, go ahead, it won’t hurt.  Well it could hurt, because you will know what is going to happen so nothing will come as a surprise.  I stopped reading the books because I really want to enjoy this show.  I want each death to be an outrage.  I want to be surprised.  Then I want to open the books and get all the details that didn’t make it into the show.  However, that’s just me.  I think the show is good enough to stand on its own.  From here on out I will assume everyone is either caught up, or doesn’t care about spoilers.  Also, be warned, I love this show, but I refuse to take anything seriously.  Except for Tyron, always take Tyron seriously.

Also, a note on how I’m going to break this up, I’ll handle each episode in sections.  Might as well try to keep things organized before it turns into a bloody mess, and it will turn into a bloody mess.  So join me won’t you as we ride a Dothraki through a cold 7-year winter to sit on a pokey chair made of swords while some blond loses more dragons, and I talk about it.

Episode 1, called “Valar Dohaeris”, starts off this season with a slow burn rather than a bang.  It’s a good slow burn.  The kind that if allowed to grow melt stone and steel and bone.  One need only watch this first episode to see where this season is going to end.  I cannot speak high enough praise for director Daniel Minahan, and writers David Benioff & D. B. Weiss.

In The North, beyond The Wall.


Previously, Jon had been captured, and killed Qhorin Halfhand (this was Qhorin’s idea), to convince the wildlings he has abandoned the night watch.  Meanwhile, Sam, Grenn, and Edd overhear a three-note horn call, which signifies White Walkers had been spotted. The others flee, leaving Sam behind.  Now, only a few of the Night’s Watch survive the attack of the White Walkers, Sam survives, but wishes he didn’t.  Sam had one job, one job Sam!  He didn’t send the crows to warn of the undead army marching south.  So they march off back to the Wall.  Meanwhile, Jon Snow arrives at the wilding camp and meets Mance Rayder, now Jon is one of them.  There isn’t much happening here.  We feel bad for Sam, and Jon, who are both in up to their eyes, but Jon seems to be dealing with this like a badass.

In King’s Landing

Previously, Tywin is now Hand of the King, and receives credit for Tyrion’s victory in the Battle of Blackwater.  Joffrey decides to Marry Margaery Tyrell, Renly’s widow, Sansa is thrilled.  Baelish warns Sansa that she is still in danger, and offers to see her home safely.  Meanwhile, Tyrion recovering from the Queen’s attempt to have him killed during the battle, refuses to leave King’s Landing.  Now, Bronn has returned. Tyrion meets with Lord Tywin who reluctantly agrees to Tyrion’s request for recognition of his accomplishments during the Battle of Blackwater.  One win for our favorite imp. However, when pressed to name him heir to Casterly Rock, Tywin refuses, quite rudely.  Petyr Baelish offers to smuggle Sansa out of Kings Landing. Ros is careful to tell Shae to watch out for Sansa’s well-being, especially when dealing with Baelish.  King Joffrey and Lady Margaery travel through Flea Bottom in a caravan where she stops at an orphanage to comfort the children. Joffrey, meanwhile, hides in his carriage with the windows shut, like a little bitch.  What we really see is the shit deal Tyrion is really getting; all he wanted was a Pepsi.  Baelish is creeping on Sansa.  And Joffrey really is just a cunt.  Can we just call him Cuntfrey?Joffrey-Baratheon-Game-Of-Thrones-Season-3-Poster

At Dragonstone

Previously, Stannis is pissed and blames his Red Priestess, Melisandre, and attempts to strangle her, but stops when she convinces him everything is his fault, and he will still win. Now at Dragonstone Davos, after being rescued from a rock by the pirate Salladhor Saan, goes back to stop Melisandre influencing Stannis by assassinating her; Melisandre insinuates to Davos that it is his fault the battle was lost, since he convinced Stannis to leave her behind.  Davos tries to attack her and Stannis orders him thrown in the dungeons.  I think Stannis would probably be Mormon, and a Jehovah Witness with 12 subscriptions to knitting monthly and be waiting for a Nigerian princess to wire him millions if he were a real person, he just seems to buy whatever is being sold.

In the Western lands

Previously, King Robb will not proceed with the arranged marriage to one of Lord Walder Frey’s daughters; instead, Robb marries Talisa in private. Meanwhile, Brienne continues to escort the prisoner Jaime Lannister to King’s Landing, in exchange for Sansa and Arya Stark.  Now, Robb Stark has arrived at Harrenhal, where he wishes to fight Lannister troops. Upon entering the castle, however, it is discovered that Gregor Clegane has abandoned it and slaughtered all the prisoners. Robb stumbles across a survivor among the dead, a man named Qyburn.

Across the Narrow Sea


Previously, Daenerys, after escaping the House of the Undying, with her dragons, proceeds to have her companions loot as much as they can from Xaro’s house in order to buy a ship.  Now, with her dragons growing fast, Daenerys has arrived at Astapor in Slaver’s Bay and is considering buying slave soldiers. Upon walking throughout a nearby market, a warlock attempts to assassinate Daenerys, but is thwarted by Barristan Selmy, who swears his allegiance to her.

That wraps up the first episode of season three.  It was actually very light for a season opener, mostly fallout from the ending of last season.  More or less, it was reminding us where everyone was, and what they have to do now, well, everyone except for Arya, Bran (and Rickon), and Theon.  This is why I love watching these episodes in pairs.  Which I think I will go do now.


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