Game of Thrones, Season 3, Ep 6 “The Climb”

Intro: I’m watching Game of Thrones for the first time. I don’t know anything about it more recent than this episode.

King’s Landing: Tywin can simply order Tyrion to marry Sansa, and Cersei to marry Loras Tyrell, but for the latter he apparently needs to have a “friendly chat” with Loras and Margaery’s grandmother (who is played by Diana Rigg, btw!). This involves him accusing Loras of being gay, which Lady Tyrell parries by casually mentioning the “rumours” about Cersei and Jaime being Joffrey’s parents. Tywin ups the stakes by threatening to make Loras a member of the Kingsguard, which would strip him of the right to marry and carry on the Tyrell name, thus ensuring the end of House Tyrell. Apparently this is enough of a threat, and so Tywin extracts her permission for the marriage. Nobody messes with Tywin.

While this is happening, Sansa and Loras engage in a painfully farcical conversation in which she is trying to flatter and seduce him in her clumsy, naïve way, while he is clearly not at all interested in anything but escaping her company and seeking out some pretty man to be with instead. Sansa remains utterly clueless, the poor girl. If there’s one saving grace to the terrible things happening to Sansa, it’s that often she’s completely oblivious to them.

Tyrion chats with Cersei about their father’s wedding plans, and wonders which of the four of them (Cersei + Loras, Sansa + himself) has got the worst deal – he self-deprecatingly concludes it’s Sansa. Tyrion wants to know who tried to have him killed during the battle against Stannis Baratheon, and Cersei’s poor parries reveal to him that Joffrey gave the order. Cersei says he has nothing to fear from Joffrey now, however, that Tywin is around to keep the young king in check. (I wouldn’t count on that, personally.)

Tyrion goes off to tell Sansa the bad news about their forced marriage. But Shae is attending to Sansa, and Sansa insists that Shae stay when Tyrion says he has news… so Tyrion is forced to tell Sansa that they are to be wed, with Shae (Tyrion’s lover, remember!) standing right there. The scene cuts before we actually see the news being delivered, so we don’t see Shae’s reaction, but I’m guessing it ain’t good. I expect one of the opening scenes in the next episode to be Shae throwing furniture at Tyrion.

Petyr Baelish has a brief meeting with Varys before he departs for the Eyrie to meet Lysa. I didn’t quite follow their conversation, as it was couched in the usual circumlocutions they use when dealing with one another, and this one was more cryptic than normal. But then the prostitute Ros was mentioned as a bone of contention between them and it cut to a scene with Joffrey in his bedchamber lowering his crossbow, and the camera panned to Ros, strung up on a bedpost, with crossbow bolts in her. I guess she was spying on one of them for the other? I obviously missed something there.

In a final shot, Petyr’s ship sails for the North, and Sansa watches it go, full of tears as she realises at least part of the horrible situation she’s in. Although, I have to say, even though she doesn’t realise it, she’s actually better off marrying Tyrion than Loras. Tyrion, as we’ve seen, at least has the brand of honour that makes him protect innocents. He’s manipulative and vindictive to his enemies, but if there’s anyone in King’s Landing that he’d look out for after Shae, it’s definitely Sansa. Loras, on the other hand, wouldn’t give two stuffs about Sansa, and would let Margaery do whatever her twisted plan is with her.

Harrenhal: Jaime and Brienne are brushed up and dressed for dinner with their captor. He ponders what to do with them, suspecting multiple parties would pay good gold for Jaime. Jaime says, “You know who would pay the most.” This seems to convince the guy that ransoming him back to the Lannisters in King’s Landing would be the best course of action, but only on the condition that Jaime swears that he was not responsible for cutting off his hand (it was actually his subordinates, on their own initiative) – I guess he doesn’t want retribution from Tywin. Fair enough, who would? But the captor doesn’t want to let Brienne go with Jaime, he’s going to keep her. Uh oh… Is the growing rapport between Jaime and Brienne strong enough yet for this to make Jaime not want to leave without her, or will he abandon her to her fate? It’s hard to see how this one will go… but I’m hoping Jaime decides to take action and return to free Brienne. Better yet, in a dramatic escape bid!

At the Brotherhood Without Banners: Arya practices archery. She recites the names of the people she’ll kill as she shoots arrows: Joffrey, Cersei, and some other name I don’t remember. She’s already a gun shot, but a guy gives her tips on being even better. Oh, I really hope she puts an arrow through Joffrey’s eye at some point in the future.

Melisandre arrives! On a horse. Remember she left Stannis to look for royal blood, and now here she is, asking for Gendry. Nobody else seems to fully realise that Gendry is Robert Baratheon’s son, but Melisandre knows not only this fact, but exactly where he is too. Okay, she’s a witch, but this is pretty good witching. Arya flat out accuses her of being a witch, and Melisandre gives her a condescending look and says they’ll meet again one day. Presumably they will. Melisandre also asks about Beric being resurrected, and is amazed that the Lord of Light has such power. They hand over Gendry and she rides off with him.

Heading to The Twins: I’m not sure exactly where they are now (maybe Riverrun still?), but Robb has a meeting in a castle with some representatives of Lord Frey. They want an apology for Robb marrying someone else, and Harrenhal and its lands! Robb is contrite and apologises, and says Frey can have Harrenhal after they win the war. I expect there to be some discussion of annulling his marriage to Talisa so Robb can fulfil his promise to marry one of Lord Frey’s daughters and cement the alliance, but apparently undoing a marriage isn’t an option, because Robb volunteers his uncle Edmure (Kat’s brother, not Ned’s brother, I assume) to marry in his place. Edmure objects, not wanting to marry some random woman he’s never seen, but then reluctantly agrees. I don’t remember Frey’s daughters, but this seems like an obvious setup for him to be pleasantly surprised later on. Or even more horrified – whichever way they play it.

Wherever Theon is: Theon’s captor and tormentor plays a sadistic game with Theon, asking him to guess who he is and why he is torturing him. The guy digs into Theon’s little finger with a knife whenever he gets a question wrong. Theon desperately figures out that he is Lord Karstark’s son (Lord Karstark who Robb beheaded recently, but his son wouldn’t have heard the news yet), a bannerman of the Starks, and thus is torturing Theon for destroying Winterfell. The guy admits this is true, but then in a twist says he’s lying and resumes torturing Theon. This guy’s obviously some sort of psychopath – either he really is Karstark’s son and is lying now to keep up the torture game, or he isn’t and was lying to keep up the torture game. Either way, he’s messed up in the head, and Theon is in a world of trouble. Though I expect Yara to ride in and save his skin at some point. We can’t have Theon die alone and unsung at the hands of this creep (even though he might deserve it).

Heading to The Wall: Osha and Jojen’s young sister argue about the correct way to skin rabbits, as Bran’s party make camp. Bran, although immobile and sitting against a tree, exercises his lordly powers of persuasion to get them to bury the hatchet. Jojen has an epileptic seizure, which his sister explains is part of his visions. He comes around and says he saw Jon Snow in the North, away from the safety of Castle Black, “surrounded by enemies”.

North of The Wall: Jon Snow is surrounded by wildlings, who indeed don’t seem to care for him, with the exception of Ygritte. Now that they have consummated their affection, she declares she is “his woman” and he has to look after her. Jon’s quizzical expression of “what? I never signed up for this” is amusing.

The party prepare to climb The Wall, using ice axes, spiked shoe plates, and ropes. It’s 700 feet high, and the climb is arduous and dangerous. The wildling leader laughs as bits of ice fall down into Jon’s face as he brings up the rear. Then Ygritte hits a fragile piece of ice and brings down huge slabs of The Wall, leaving her and Jon dangling. The wildling above them cuts the rope to let them drop, but Jon manages to swing them over to another piece of ice and grab on just in time. When he and Ygritte reach the top, exhausted, the other wildlings just sneer at them.

But then Jon and Ygritte look down from The Wall into the fertile lands to the south, and a golden sunset envelops them in radiance as they kiss. Awwww…

Well, I have no idea what the plan is once they reached the top of The Wall. Do they climb down the other side? Or somehow rig the wooden lift thingy to take them down? Or something else? I guess we’ll see next time. At any rate, there don’t appear to be any patrols atop The Wall right now. Maybe they wait for the next one and attack?

One Response to “Game of Thrones, Season 3, Ep 6 “The Climb””

  1. Glen Barnett says:

    Ros had been recruited in an earlier scene; there was also foreshadowing in a couple of even earlier scenes of the likelihood of an eventual gruesome outcome. (Many of my favourite scenes involve Varys, especially the ones between Varys and Littlefinger, but they require close watching.) Yes, Riverrun. Yes, Kat’s brother. I won’t comment on your surmises about future events, but those are really interesting to read.

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