9 May 2016

Game of Thrones "Oathbreaker" Review

This post includes spoilers for Game of Thrones Season 6 Episode 3, "Oathbreaker".

In this week's adventure, Ramsay receives a gift. Daenerys discovers her future while Bran discovers the past. Again, I shall split up my review by focusing on each location/storyline.


King's Landing


We're beginning to see Cersei reclaim her grip on the kingdom. With her monopoly on Varys' little birds, as well as regaining her seat on the small council. There's a dispute between the two maesters that I would love to see addressed soon; Pycelle used to be Cersei's lapdog but ever since Gregor's resurrection, Qyburn has quickly become her tool of destruction. The Queen of Thorns' remark "I do appreciate things can get a little confusing in your family" was particularly amusing - I suspect she may come to regret that now that Cersei is on the war path. Also, did Pycelle do a nervous fart?

The High Sparrow, on the other hand, seems to be getting into Tommen's head. I admire Jonathan Pryce for what's brought to this show, and I think it's going to be interesting to see Tommen come at odds between serving his mother and serving the Faith of the Seven.

One thing I find particularly odd is that the ranks of Varys' little birds would be too easy to be broken with promises of candy. I think this is a trick - perhaps a way the eunuch can keep up to date on things happening in Westeros. The birds report to Cersei, and then report to Varys.

Essos

Tyrion trying to initiate a conversation was the highlight of this episode. It doesn't seem like he's too concerned with helping rule a city of former slaves and sellswords. These scenes never get boring, but I think he's getting bored himself while waiting around for Dany to return. Speaking of which...

I was excited to see the return of Vaes Dothrak. It's a location I always loved in the books due to it being the central hub of the Dothraki. Not really much happened in the way of plot development, Dany's going to learn the ways of the Khal widows so... cool I guess. I just wish her story would go somewhere. She gets like 3 minutes of screen-time per episode.

I liked the montage of No-one going through Arya Stark's history. I watched some old episodes of Thrones recently and saw how much Arya had changed over the years, so I have big praise for Maisie Williams' growth as an actress.



The North

The Umbers are up to something. I was incredibly skeptical of the Smalljon bringing Rickon (who?) and Osha to the Boltons. Amidst calling everyone cunts and his casual paedophile accusations towards Lord Karstark, the Smalljon refused to kneel. The head of the wolf also looked a lot smaller than the others', which leads me to believe it was just a regular wolf's head. I think the Umbers are leading Ramsay into a false sense of security. I'll bet he gets lured outside of Winterfell on the pretext of Jon marching with his wildlings and then he'll find a lot of the Northern houses have banded together to defeat the Boltons! That's maybe wishful thinking, but I'm going to stick to that theory. One thing is certain, Smalljon Umber is awesome and the North subplot is still the most interesting thing despite only 4 minutes of exposure.

The Wall and beyond

Book fans rejoice! We finally got to see part of an important scene from A Game of Thrones through the eyes of Bran. I shan't spoil much for those who don't know about it, but it gon' be goooood. I admire the choreography during the fight outside the Tower of Joy, the fight was really well performed. The actor playing young Ned Stark was a good choice.

Jon is back! He died, returned and now he's telling us he literally knows nothing. I think that makes the final scene even more chilling. He knows he's about to hang these men and send them into nothingness. It's why he hesitated. I'm glad that prick Olly is dead... although I do think he was written amazingly well. Olly is a good example of a character overwhelmed by blind hatred that he refuses all aspects of logic and sense. That death stare at the end was the perfect way to end it. Once the bodies had stopped twitching, and the camera revealed their purple faces, whether they deserved it or not, I couldn't help but feel sympathetic towards them.

Jon's words "my watch has ended" means he's going to start on a new path with the wildlings and Davos. With an impeding army of white walkers on the way, he's going to have to unite the North to be ready to fight back, and that means retaking Winterfell.

Summary



Things are moving slowly in Essos, but escalating quickly in King's Landing and the North. I'm glad we're getting some more exposure into the history of Westeros through the eyes of Bran, and finally being reunited with Rickon means we're going to be playing a lot of catchup next week. This episode had some great cinematography in key moments, and the writing for some characters (Olly, Edd, the Umbers) has been top notch.

Overall I'd give this episode a 7/10.

In Memoriam

Alliser Thorne
(Fuck) Olly
Othell Yarwyck (who died by hanging due to treason, definitely not fighting wildlings)
Bowen Marsh
Ser Arthur Dayne
Ser Gerold Hightower
Not-Shaggydog

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