Game of Thrones: “Mockingbird” Review
After one of the best performances I’ve ever seen in Game of Thrones, where Peter Dinklage’s Tyrion Lannister shot down any hope of a Lannister family reunion. Cersei’s mockery of a trial enraged Tyrion to the point that he refused Tywin’s offer to join the Night’s Watch, which played right into Cersei’s plan to have him murdered when he called for a trial by combat. This past week, the Hush team had a passionate debate as to whom the trial would feature and tonight we found out who would square off.
This season just keeps getting better and better, and the impending feeling that things as we’ve known them throughout the series will change immensely: Tyrion has completely severed ties with his family and put Jaime in a tough spot, Arya has grown into a killer thanks to her extended road trip with The Hound, Daenerys seems to be over-reaching and is unable to keep the territory she has seized, and Castle Black looks to be in for a doozy when the Wildling army comes to their doorstep – oh, and then there is the whole issue of the White Walkers approaching. There doesn’t appear to be one front-runner for the throne; something has to give somewhere.
Tyrion just can’t admit when he’s defeated, which makes for some damn good television. Tyrion is most entertaining and cunning when backed into a corner, but there aren’t too many people left to lean on. As habitual sister-raper and one-handed King’s Guard, Jamie Lannister, tries to remedy the situation, it’s evident that he doesn’t see Tywin for the monster he is. “You could kill a king, lose your hand, fuck your own sister; you’ll always be the Golden son.” It’s a believable relationship and adds to the heart-breaking fact that the King Slayer Bros. are breaking up the band. Tyrion is running out of choices for a champion, and when Cersei picks The Mountain as her champion and buys Bronn out, Tyrion is left in the cold. Bronn’s abandonment is not just unsurprising, but completely justifiable. Their break-up is even sadder than the one he had with Podrick, and it signifies Tyrion’s goodbye to the world he knows at King’s Landing.
Arya and The Hound have formed such an odd relationship. Arya let the cat out of the bag last episode when she mentioned that The Hound was a name on her list of people to murder, but they continue to help and protect each other while it is convenient. I’m not sure if there has been a symbiotic relationship formed between the two, but it seems they are both rubbing off on each other. Arya is becoming more ruthless, sticking Needle into the heart of one of her former captures with little second thought – as long as she knew his name before she did the deed. She has a code that’s stronger than Hound’s, which will come in handy when she uses that coin to call upon Jaqen H’ghar (valar morghulis). I thought it was a little weird the way The Hound opened up to Arya about being alone in the world, but I understood the point that the show was making. It’s also worth pointing out that an untreated wound is never good in Westeros – just ask Khal Drogo.
Speaking of, Daenerys is having a hell of a time keeping everything under control. She has become a fully realized ruler, complete with slaughter without prejudice. She finally gives in to Daario, and even General Friendzone, Jorah Mormont, can’t get in the way of their fling. Jorah is trying to open Khaleesi up to the fact that enemies live in a grey area, not all are evil beings. The mantra “They can live in my new world, or they can die in their old one” is repeated. I love the fire with which Daenerys rules, but she is becoming arrogant, and not even her sexy dress can keep her from annoying me this week.
This is one of the most involved episodes of the season, showing almost everybody’s story to some extent, inching the season toward a clashing finale. Brienne and Podrick get a lead on where to find the Stark girls. Podrick still keeps Tyrion in his heart, as evidenced by his rate of alcohol consumption. Their trip to the Eyre can’t be a safe one, as they found a solution much too quickly. There is some more interaction with Stannis Baratheon’s women, as well, but not much happens. Their story has become the least interesting in the show to me, but I know this will play into war with the White Walkers somewhere – perhaps they will be able to save the Wall, where thousands of Wildlings will soon be descending upon Castle Black, similar to how Tywin ruined his invasion of King’s Landing.
Oberyn Martell emerged in Tyrion’s cell, telling him a story about how much Cersei hated Tyrion for his disfigurement and the death of their mother during childbirth. It’s an incredibly hurtful story, even bringing Tyrion to tears. Martell sees that Tyrion has really only been a Lannister in name, and tells Tyrion that Oberyn will his champion in the trial by combat, exacting revenge on The Mountain.
Who won the game of thrones this episode?
You thought we forgot about Peter Baelish? Never. This man is just too damn crafty to leave out. Littlefinger and Sansa have arrived at the Erye, which is one of the strongest holds in Westeros thanks to its narrow Black Gates. While he is obviously using Lysa Arryn for his title, things are not all right in this twisted family. Sansa is adjusting to a safe life (maybe not that safe, but way better than being Joffrey’s rape-toy if Baelish wouldn’t have whisked her away) in the Eyre, and even feels comfortable enough to bitch-slap Lysa’s son, Robert, when he ruins her snow castle. I don’t know if it’s the contrast of the snow or if it was a cool filter, but the shots of Sansa in the courtyard are beautiful. Littlefinger is most dangerous because he can make people believe that his scheming is what they actually wanted to happen. He will have Sansa under his little finger so quickly, she won’t know what happened. And it starts with making the crazy lady fly. Now the sneaky lord has his own kingdom, complete with a miniature Catelyn Tully at his side.
Hush Comics gives “Mockingbird” a A- for the all-inclusive and very progressive story, which seems to be driving our well-established character roles right off a cliff. The relationships can get a bit awkward at times, specifically Arya and the Hound, and Sansa and Baelish, but there is just so much bubbling up that it’s bound to pop soon. The ability to tackle so many different progressions and still tie them back into the big picture is a feat not many shows can pull off. There’s a week hiatus of Game of Thrones next week; take a vacation, go outside and enjoy the weather. We’ll be in Houston for ComicPalooza next week, but keep an eye out for our updates on the con and watch us back here in two weeks for “The Mountain and The Viper,” which will be the showdown of The Mountain and Oberyn Martell GoT has been building up to all season.
All media credited to HBO