Game of Thrones: Season 4 So Far
By Thomas Firth.
As there’s a hiatus between episode seven and eight of Season 4, I thought it would be ideal to take a look back at the developments so far in the season.
Beyond the Wall
We haven’t had one glimpse of Mance Rayder’s wildling army yet, but we’ve heard a lot about them and their movements. Widling fires are seen nearby Craster’s Keep and some sections of the army has already crossed the Wall and are gathering in the North of Westeros with Tormund Giantsbane.
As for Bran and his group, they’ve had quite an adventure so far. A lonesome Weirwood Tree has sent them further north to meet with an unknown entity and simultaneously, Bran witnesses the past and perhaps the future. Their journey north coincides with Jon’s force of men who are traveling to Craster’s Keep to get rid of the scum inside. After being captured and held by Karl Tanner and his men, they are freed by Locke who is determined to bring Bran to Lord Bolton in the Neck. Instead, he is killed by Hodor who is warged by Bran. Karl Tanner is killed by Jon, but the bastard Stark is unable to meet with his half-brother as Bran is persuaded by his freinds, Jojen and Meera Reed that he must continue north without him. But the good news is, Jon has been reunited with his Direwolf, Ghost.
Also beyond the Wall, we see an entourage of White Walkers who appear to be breeding their kind for something that we can only guess at so far.
In the North
At the wall, tensions are high with Ser Alliser Thorne and Lord Janos Slynt in charge. Jon has a number of the Night’s Watch on his side, but his influence is limited. Especially when trying to explain to his leaders the danger that is drawing ever closer. Samwell Tarly meanwhile, has made a bad decision and sent Gilly to Mole’s Town. He instantly regrets this following the announcement that the Wildlings south of the Wall are drawing nearer.
Tormund Giantsbane has met with Styr, leader of the Thenn clan, who are cannibals. Together, they have been ransacking villages south of the Wall and sending a message to the Night’s Watch while waiting for Mance’s signal.
Ramsay Snow in now in charge of the Dreadfort, with the demoralised Theon Greyjoy (Reek) as his slave. Following an attack by the Iron Islanders and Theon’s sister, Yara, Ramsay decides that Reek is now ready to be useful – to pretend to be Theon Greyjoy in Moat Cailin.
In the East and Dragonstone
Arya and the Hound are slowly making their way from the Twins to the Eyrie where Sandor is hoping to sell Arya to her aunt. So far, they’ve killed a few Lannister men, have also stolen from a local farmer and been at odds with each other. After a gruesome meeting with Biter, Arya now tends to the Hound’s wounds.
Lord Baelish has returned to the Eyrie with Sansa Stark following the wedding in King’s Landing. Here, he hopes to keep the young Stark safe from any harm while also able to carry out his plans. Lysa Arryn, however, is concerned that Baelish wants Sansa for himself and not for her safety and sees them kissing. She threatens Sansa, which only leads to Baelish pushing her through her own Moon door.
Brienne and Podrick arrive in a tavern where Hot Pie has been working ever since Arya and him separated. He offers the two travellers information on Arya, which could help them find Sansa. Pod later suggests that they head towards the Eyrie, where their last remaining aunt lives.
At Dragonstone, Stannis has heard about the army marching on the Wall and hopes to meet it with his own. Whilst in a reading lesson with Shireen Baratheon, Davos realises that the Bank of Braavos could be excellent providers for funds. Speaking to Tycho Nestoris, Stannis does get his money and he with Davos and Melisandre’s help look ready for battle.
What hasn’t happened in King’s Landing?
Oberyn Martell has arrived in the capital for the Wedding, but has an ulterior motive. He tells Tyrion, that he wants revenge on the Lannisters for murdering his sister Ellia. Jaime receives training from Ser Bronn, to improve the skills of his left hand. He has also been given a new sword by his father, Tywin, as one of two, the other given to King Joffrey as a wedding present. Also, in the background, Tyrion persuades Shae to leave the capital in order to protect herself.
The wedding itself between Joffrey ‘Baratheon’ and Margaery Tyrell was momentous with a battle of words between a number of characters (Jaime and Loras, Cersei and Brienne, Oberyn and Cersei), which all ends with a bang as the King and Tyrion are at odds (to Joffrey’s delight), before he is poisoned and begins to choke. As he dies, Cersei accuses Tyrion of the murder.
Sansa is scurried away by Ser Dontos Hollard who was actually an associate of the real mastermind, Littlefinger. Tyrion is sent to the dungeons and unable to see many of his friends. Cersei becomes very protective of Tommen who is now the newly arranged match for Margaery. Tywin is quick to react as he assigns both Mace Tyrell and Oberyn Martell to be his fellow judges in Tyrion’s trial. Lady Margaery learns that her mother was very probably a part of the murder of her late husband.
With Sansa gone, Jaime is ordered by his sister to find the young Stark. He in turn asks his faithful friend, Brienne to carry out this deed with his new sword, which she names Oathkeeper. She departs with Podrick Payne to find Sansa and not kill her.
When Tommen is finally crowned the new King, it becomes clear that Cersei is trying to manipulate a few people. She speaks with Margaery, Oberyn and her father on the matter of the trial for Tyrion, telling every one of them that she thinks her brother guilty of being a Kingslayer. Her manipulation is realised when it comes to the trial and a line of witnesses come forward to destroy Tyrion’s hope, finished off with Shae’s terrible betrayal. Despite Jaime’s plea, Tyrion decides to have a trial by combat in order to decide his fate.
Recently, we saw him greeted by three visitors. Jaime, who claimed that his left hand would never defeat Gregor Clegane; Ser Bronn, who claimed that he couldn’t risk his life for Tyrion again; and Ser Oberyn, who told Tyrion that he would be his champion.
After liberating Yunkai, Daenerys is heading towards the final city in Slaver’s Bay, Meereen. On their journey, they come across 163 crucified children – a message given to her by the masters of Meereen. She chooses to bury them once she’s looked into each of their eyes.
They finally arrive in Meereen, where they are met by a champion. Daario Naharis offers himself to kill the champion. He simply blinds the horse with a dagger and then slashes the fallen warrior, ending the small competition. In order to send her message, Daenerys catapults broken chains over the walls of Meereen to stimulate a rebellion in the slaves.
Coinciding with these events, Daenerys has been struggling to control her now adolescent dragons. Ser Jorah Mormont tells her plainly that they are untrainable, even by their mother. Also, Grey Worm has been given lessons by Missandei in the Common Tongue, to help with the Khaleesi.
Meereen, is quickly sieged as Grey Worm persuades the slaves to fight against the masters. In retaliation to the crucifixion, Daenerys orders 163 masters to be killed in the same horrifying way, despite Ser Barristan Selmy’s plea for mercy. Later, in the Great Pyramid, the council discuss their next move. Ser Barristan thinks there’s enough to take King’s Landing, but Ser Jorah is more anxious to note that both Astapor and Yunkai have fallen into the hands of enemies who threaten Deanerys’ reign. She decides that she will stay to rule Slaver’s Bay and not leave yet.
And recently, Daario visits Daenerys’ quarters to do what he does best. She complies, and following a night of ‘passion’, Ser Jorah finds Daario leaving her quarters the next morning. Daenerys herself wants to retake Slaver’s Bay, and has decided to send the Second Sons with Daario Naharis to Yunkai to kill those responsible for the betrayal. Ser Jorah succesfully changes her mind to send Hizdahr zo Loraq with them to negotiate instead.