Recap: Game of Thrones, 2.6, “The Old Gods and the New”

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Howdy howdy y’all. Looks like I am back and filling in again for this week’s Game of Thrones recap! Looks like we’re still jumping around all over the place, people are getting killed, and the ladies of this show are still kicking more ass than the boys. Onward, shall we? (And, unfortunately, I was on a tight deadline with this one and couldn’t hunt down screencaps. There will be pretty pictures in my next recap, promise!)

WINTERFELL

My notes the entire time consisted of “ugh Theon” and expletives that I am sure some of y’all don’t mind seeing in great number. I’ll try to refrain for the sake of professionalism. That, and I need to figure out a way to adequately convey my frustrations in words greater than four letters in length .

All I’ve got is Theon is the Worst. He still doesn’t know who he is, and is apparently dead set on being a despicable horndog with negligible sword skills. Osha uses this to her advantage, though, and it brings a satisfactory escape from all the madness for Bran, Rickon and Hodor. My own dear father texted me after this episode was finished to remark on the action moving through the women of the story, and this is where the deal on that perspective is sealed.

BEYOND THE WALL

Oh bless you, Jon, you can’t ever keep your mouth shut. Thankfully, the north beyond the Wall just got ten times more interesting because it has – oh hey! – stopped being a sausage fest. Ygritte, who I’ve only heard about in the fringes of the not-too-spoilery things I’ve read about this series, makes her debut.

And she is fantastic at, again, playing the game. Maybe Jon Snow will find a use for that perpetually-hanging flytrap on his face, or Ygritte will find one for him.

HARRENHAL

Oh my God, Arya! Arya and her shit-eating grin! Arya panicking at Littlefinger’s appearance! Arya hearing stories about Jaime Lannister’s dyslexia! Arya wasting her second damn kill! Have I mentioned that my kitten is named Arya? My Arya is kind of like the real Arya; sneaky but not sneaky enough, brazen, and too adorable for words. And occasionally a poor decision-maker.

KING’S LANDING

I just read this scene in the book and I’ve been dreading seeing it. Joffrey has objects that share a name with him (that would be shit, in case you weren’t following) thrown his way, and he decides that he wants to kill everyone for just trying to incite a little family reunion. (That means the Lannisters are, for the most part, shits. In case I’ve gone too far over your head.)

Sansa! If anyone says they hate Sansa Stark after all this I don’t want to know them. I am the biggest Sansa stan this world has ever seen, and I maintain that she is the embodiment of a particular type of feminine strength, even as she is coming in to her own. I do hope she stops getting”¦rescued so much? But even then, she isn’t helpless, simply not equipped for the realities of this level of hatred. And can you hear that sound in the distance? That is the sound of thousands of SanSan shippers squealing with delight. I’ve warned you. You’re welcome.

STARK CAMP

Again, we’re moving things with the ladies. The ladies who kick more ass and have more sense than any of the testosterone-carrying nitwits populating the rest of this show. Cat reminds her son that he has responsibilities, and do you know why? Because Catelyn Stark is better than you. I wish I had more to say on the subject, more wit, more eloquence, but it is a concise point I wish to make plain.

QARTH

Clearly, Dany has not had her come to R’hllor meeting, and is sounding exactly like Viserys. I’m ready to pull my hair out at this point, because Daenerys, love, you have got to calm your tits and listen to Jorah (not Daxos/Ducksauce, no matter how awesome his name is) and try to pay closer attention to your dragons.

The dragons! They’re being carried off somewhere! Whoever took them killed Irri, those bastards. But who took them? The warlocks? Some other member of the Thirteen? Next week! Next week we find out!

Have at it, darlins. Who do you think took the dragons? Who do you think will be the last ladies standing when all is said and done? Will Jon Snow ever stop gaping his maw?

Spoilers note: as before, anything from the first book or TV series is not a spoiler. Please use spoiler tags for anything else using the [*spoiler*] and [/*spoiler*] tags. (Remove the asterisks to make the tags.)

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Caitlinface is a Caitlin, with a face. She reads things, sometimes writes things, and obsessively forces friends to watch her favorite things. She self-identifies as a Gemini Slytherin Targaryen, but don't worry, she's not really all that bad.
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CaitlinfaceRecap: Game of Thrones, 2.6, “The Old Gods and the New”

24 Comments on “Recap: Game of Thrones, 2.6, “The Old Gods and the New””

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  1. Avatar of fun back in sin
    fun back in sin

    I was not into the Ygritte and Jon Snow storyline in the books [spoiler] man, GRRM can’t write a sex scene to save his life, can he? [/spoiler] but I loved the actress playing her in Downton Abbey, so perhaps the show will convert me to being a fan.

    1. Avatar of hayduke
      hayduke

      No. No he cannot. And the show didn’t do much better of a job on this one, huh? Awkward. Just awkward. Not fun or funny, not dramatic, not sweet, just… awkward.

  2. Avatar of chochosan
    chochosan

    Not to get all Westeros-is-Medieval-England, because dudes, it’s fantasy; but Theon and Joffrey do serve as good reminders of how effed up medieval Europe was when, basically, teenagers were in charge of everything.

    Here’s to longer life spans!

  3. Avatar of [M] QoB
    [M] QoB

    I love the juxtaposition of Theon beheading Rodrik; Jon having to behead Ygritte and not being able to; and Ned waayy back in the first episode. The contrast between Theon, Jon, and their father figure is massive. I love that the writers made sure Theon couldn’t kill Rodrik with one stroke.

    My only problem with Ygritte is her hair was too neat. Otherwise: awesome.

    And yes, HATE that they killed Irri. First Rakharo, now her… soon we’ll have no more awesome Dothraki left.

    Also, Amory Lorch’s death? Pure comedy gold.

  4. Avatar of [M] freckle
    [M] freckle

    I completely forgot about Jaime’s dyslexia (if it was even mentioned). I don’t know about Jon/Ygritte yet. Arya is the cutest. Sansa the strongest. Dany needs a new tune.

    The end ;)

    1. Avatar of hayduke
      hayduke

      I’m not sure it was mentioned.

      [spoiler]

      In the books, this whole Tywin/Arya interaction thing is just not there. I also don’t think we ever got a Tywin perspective chapter. So while I’m not saying “oh, I would totally remember if Tywin had mentioned Jaime having dyslexia,” it seems like the books wouldn’t really have offered much opportunity for that to come up. In contrast to the show.

      [/spoiler]

      If I’m wrong, somebody point me to where it was?

  5. Avatar of Ren
    Ren

    Theon with all his limited mind and misguided ambition, so well written and well played. Fabulous hate fodder. Although I’m beginning to worry Alfie Allen will be typecast as a dickhead ever after.

    Speaking of hate fodder, Joffrey’s constant, public awfulness is growing tiresome to me. Wasn’t he somewhat capable of maintaining a civilized facade when necessary?

    Jon + Ygritte made me cringe, but I suppose that’s true to the spirit of the original, I always found that particular storyline rather gratuitous.

    That being said, I’ve apparently underestimated how much of the content of the books I’ve forgotten by now. [spoiler]It’s quite difficult to follow the stuff they’ve changed in the script. I honestly didn’t remember anyone taking the dragons from Daenerys in the books. And the Reed kids, I can’t remember when exactly they showed up in the books, but I’ve got a feeling they’ve definitely been cut from the TV adaptation, haven’t they?[/spoiler]

    Oh well. Arya and Tyrion stuff is still reliably fantastic. Looking forward to seeing what’s left of Jaime Lannister.

    1. Avatar of [M] QoB
      [M] QoB

      (edited to spoilerise some mention of characters which may or may not exist in the TV series) [spoiler] I think there is time for the Reeds to be introduced – otherwise will Rickon and Osha go with Bran, or vice versa? – but I haven’t heard any rumours one way or the other. [/spoiler]

    2. Avatar of Spicy Armadillo
      Spicy Armadillo

      I’m re-reading the series right now.  Season One wasn’t too different from the book, but Season Two is off the rails (for the better in many ways).  In terms of what you said under cover of spoiler – No, that didn’t happen and Yes, they should have appeared by now.

  6. Avatar of hayduke
    hayduke

    Oh, Ser Rodrik!

    I’m inclined to cut about half of our main characters  a little bit of slack for their poor decision making and occasionally selfish, bratty behavior. Because this is what kids do. The do this even if they have a quality adult presence in their life, which few of these do right now. Daenaerys? She’s what, fourteen at this point? And she’s been raised to be entitled, people are still falling all over themselves on a regular basis to tell her how awesome she is, and she has the only three living dragons the world has seen in centuries. Arya? She’s about ten. Sansa? I’m working hard to cut her more slack…

    As good a job as the show has done adapting the books for this format – some changes are necessary and inevitable, and I’m fine with that – this episode pissed me off.

    [spoiler]

    1. The theft of the dragons. This one I can let slide, since I think they’re going to have to do some serious tweaking of her story line, especially since we’re jumping around to every location at least once in each episode. What I’m not as cool about is the slaughter of all her remaining people. (Also: does anyone else presume the dragons have been taking to the House of the Undying?)

    2. Where in the fuck are Meera and Jojen Reed? Not just because I loved those characters, but because I am really not sure how you are supposed to move Bran’s story forward without them. Ugh.)

    [/spoiler]

    This show does one hell of a job with fan-service, I’ll say that. Renly/Loras. Shirtless Gendry (where were you this episode?!). Various indignities to Joffrey’s person. I now have four .gifs of that little shit getting slapped.

    1. Avatar of Ren
      Ren

      Ahh, so the dragon robbery wasn’t in the books after all? I was so confused. (Although I can’t recall the reason why she ever went to the House of the Undying at all, at least this would be some motivation. And, given the size of Daenerys’s entourage and the relative worth of those dragons, it’s surprising nobody robbed her in the books.)

      [spoiler]I’m guessing they’re replacing the Reeds with Osha, but, uhm,[/spoiler] with the recent addition of Ygritte and that medicine woman that’s got Robb all googly-eyed, the place is beginning to crawl with mysterious, sexually liberated exotic women characters already.

      1. Avatar of Silverwane
        Silverwane

        If I remember correctly, in the book she goes to the House of Undying because

        [spoiler]no one else in Qarth helps her. They offered help, so eventually she ignores the warnings and goes there.[/spoiler]

        1. Avatar of Ren
          Ren

          Ah, that might have been it. I do sort of remember everyone in Qarth being smug dicks to her, and the eventual outcome there as well, I think, but almost nothing about how things got to that point. All her travels have been quite confusing to follow.

    1. Avatar of [E] pileofmonkeys
      [E] pileofmonkeys

      Yeah, the changes seem kind of arbitrary. I didn’t love Dany’s Qarth storyline in the books, but I don’t think it necessitated such a departure for the show.

      Oh, and did you guys know that Zorro Zorran Ducksauce is the richest man in Qarth? Because he’s totally the richest man in Qarth. If you happen to forget that, he’ll remind you in about six minutes.

    2. Avatar of frenchfry
      frenchfry

      I think the killing was unnecessary, but I like the other changes they’ve made, namely the dragon stealing. Dany running around Qarth begging for ships was gonna get tedious really fast.

  7. Avatar of frenchfry
    frenchfry

    I’m torn between two favorite parts of this episode: The Arya and Tywin scenes, or Tyrion taking Joffrey down a notch. I think putting Arya and Tywin together was a brilliant move by the show- I’ve absolutely adored all of their scenes, and Tywin is unexpectedly becoming one of my favorite characters to watch. On the other hand, watching Joffrey getting slapped and called a vicious idiot is something I will always enjoy.

    1. Avatar of Ren
      Ren

      Agreed, Tywin and Arya works on so many levels. Without these scenes, it might be hard to see what exactly makes the Lannisters so formidable – it’s less about the money, more about Tywin and the way he’s running things.

  8. Avatar of [E] pileofmonkeys
    [E] pileofmonkeys

    Theon is the Absolute Worst. I hate him.

    Arya’s storyline is my favorite right now. I love seeing her interact with Tywin and Jaqen. Her decision-making may be hasty, but she’s nine, so I’ll give her a bit of a pass, although I do think she’ll look back and kick herself for wasting her first two kills.

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