Cersei Lannister isn’t as down and out as she would lead us to believe in the last episode. At a meeting of the small council, Cersei sends Margarey’s father, Lord Tyrell the Master of Coin, to visit the Iron Bank. She no doubt expects his departure to be aptly timed. She also encourages the rebirth of the Faith Militant, a religious organization devoted to weeding out unrighteousness and gives them free reign, provided they help her with a little Tyrell problem. Margaery’s gay brother is locked up in a cell, angering the new Queen and causing a rift between her an King Tommen. In an attempt to protect his marriage, Tommen quickly goes to his mother Cersei demanding the Tyrell boy be released. Instead she informs him he will have to take it up with the High Sparrow and the Faith Militant, which quickly prove to be a difficult foe for the young King.
At the Wall, Stannis and his wife discuss their daughter, with Selyse apologizing for their deformed daughter. Melissandre interrupts, making it quite clear that young Princess Shireen is exactly who she should be to the Lord of Light. Sam gives Jon Snow letters to sign requesting men for the Black Guard from neighboring towns. When he comes across one addressed to Rob Stark’s slayer, Jon refuses to sign. Sam explains that he must make the difficult request or all suffer. As Sam leaves, Mellisandre enters and offers herself sexually to Jon Snow. When Snow refuses due to his lingering love for the deceased Ygritte, Melissandre delivers a heartbreaking reprise to “You know nothing, Jon Snow.” Stannis and Shireen share a tender moment when he admits he loves his daughter and would do anything for her, despite her mother.
At Winterfell, Sansa start spends time in front of her Aunt’s funeral statue, lighting candles. She is joined by Baelish who announces he has been recalled to King’s Landing by Cersei, and his refusal would tip off their plan. Sansa expresses her concern at being left with the Boltons, but Baelish assures her that in no time Stannis’ army will march in and rescue her before making her Wardess of Winterfell. Sansa has her doubts, but kisses Baelish before he leaves and warns him sadly that when he returns she will be a married woman.
Jamie and Bronn arrive at Dorne and begin their trek to rescue Jamie’s daughter. They realize quickly they have been betrayed by the merchant of the ship they sailed in on, as Dornish riders approach to kill them. Ellaria Sand rides to her daughters, the Sand Snakes (Obara, Tyene and Nymeria) and informs them their uncle will do nothing about Oberyn’s death. She asks if they will help her start a war and they plan to grab Jamie’s daughter and kill her to do so.
Tyrion speaks to Mormont about his plans for him, only to discover he is being brought to Daenerys. He warns Mormont that it was a wasted kidnapping and cautions that the former ally of Daenerys may not be welcome with or without the dwarf. Daenerys shares a moment with Barristan Selmy regarding her deceased older brother and then fights with Hizdahr again over whether they will reopen the fighting pits. Unfortunately, the violence of the Sons of the Harpy is not over leaving this episode on a very violent downnote.
I will admit to being relieved that I didn’t have to see anymore Margaery/Tommen sex this week, but there were still enough uncomfortable scenes to make up for it. Sansa declaring to Baelish that she will be a married woman is not just a declaration of time; it’s a warning that he will not be the one to take her virginity. Cersei most definitely is still in charge, even if it takes using religion to get her way. Tommen seems so lost as King it’s both laughable and sad. Let’s take a minute to talk about the Sand Snakes. Um, how awesome are they with those whips? Oh, and spear to the head!
Selmy and Grey Worm seem like they are on their way out of this life at the end of the episode, which is sad but not unexpected with Daenery’s recent ruling choices. I’m actually surprised worse hasn’t happened. Jamie and Bronn, meanwhile, is like the ultimate buddy comedy with swords. When they discuss how they want to die, it is hard not to shed a tear for Jaime. Dying in the arms of the woman he loves? Not likely. Bronn just might get his wish if he manages to keep his head on his shoulders.
The scene with Mellisandre and Jon Snow was creepy and emotional. She throws herself at him like and offering and when Melissandre does not get what she wants, she throws out the secret loving joke that Jon Snow and Ygritte used so many times, tarnishing it forever.