“Power resides where men believe it resides. It’s a trick, a shadow on the wall.”
Game of Thrones
We’re at episode 3, series 2 now, and while What Is Dead May Never Die is not quite as unfocused as The Night Lands was, there’s still a lot going on. As the various factions of the North prepare to attack those of the South, Theon is forced to choose between his family, the Greyjoys, and his friends, the Starks; Arya faces trouble on the march to the Wall; Catelyn Stark rallies the support of King Renly and his new Queen; Jon Snow is in trouble with the Night’s Watch; and Tyrion plays the deadly game of politics in King’s Landing.
In fact, what this episode makes abundantly clear is that the game of thrones is not deadly only in King’s Landing but in Pyke, in Winterfell, and even beyond the Wall. Everyone in this brutal world is caught in a subtle and delicate net of promises, threats and deceits, from the highest to the lowest, and morality is a problematic thing. This, I think, is what differentiates Game of Thrones from so much medieval fantasy: good and bad are negotiable. I don’t think there’s anyone who wants the Lannisters to win the threatened war, but Tyrion’s cynicism and occasional acts of altruism still make us root for him. So what do we do? Keep watching, of course.
Some things I would especially like to see in series 2, though:
- Shae and Sansa becoming friends. There aren’t any female friendships in Game of Thrones at the moment, and Sansa really needs someone to open up to.
- More of Danaerys. Because she is the one with the dragons. And DRAGONS.
- Spooky stuff beyond the Wall.
I’m looking forward to it already.