Game of Thrones: The World From Up There (double episode edition!)

Episode 5: Kissed by Fire
Episode 6: The Climb

Jamie and Brienne—They arrive a Lord Bolton’s fortress. Bolton is a brooding, mysterious type, and has a way with words (telling Jamie King’s Landing is fine, but making it seem not). He also seems disgusted with how Jamie and Brienne have been treated, especially the loss of Jamie’s hand.

He sends Jamie to the maester, who suggests taking off the whole infected arm. Jamie makes a convincing case not to, however. Instead the maester takes to slicing off the infected flesh. Lovely scene.

Later, Jamie finds Brienne in the bathhouse, scrubbing away the past few days. Despite there being plenty of other baths, Jamie struts along—naked and proud, as he should be—and plops down in Brienne’s. She’s annoyed at first, but doesn’t seem really annoyed, if ya know what I mean.

She starts in with the whole “Kingslayer” stuff again, so Jamie tells her all about why he got that moniker. Short version: the Mad King was going to burn all of King’s Landing with wildfire, knowing he couldn’t win. So Jamie did the only logical thing; he killed him.

It’s an intense story, made even moreso by Coster-Waldau’s performance. Brienne listens with rapt attention. Before she can question him, he passes out.
Later, Bolton treats Jamie and Brienne to a meal. He found our lady knight “appropriate” clothes; a ridiculous pink dress that looks so out of place on her.

Bolton agrees with Jamie that King’s Landing would offer the greatest reward for his return. But that doesn’t include Brienne. Jamie seems concerned for some reason...

Arya—The trial by combat between The Hound and Beric begins. A brutal fight ensues. For only having one eye, Beric is a formidable fighter; especially with a flaming sword (remember, fire is he Hound’s phobia). 

But the Hound emerges victorious when his sword snaps Beric’s and he plunges it into Beric’s shoulder and chest.

Beric collapses on the ground, dead. Thoros rushes to him and prays to the Lord of Light to spare him. Arya, filled with rage, tries to kill the Hound herself. But the Brotherhood grabs her before she can. But then Beric sits up, very much alive. The power of prayer, people! The Brotherhood lets the Hound go free, and Arya is pissed. But he did win the trial, Beric points out.

Later, just to add more strife, Gendry informs her that he’s staying on with the Brotherhood as a smith. She tries to argue with him, but it’s pointless; he’s made up his mind.

That night, as she recites her list of names, Thoros tells her they’ll be taking her to Riverrun. As a hostage, of course, they need the money. The conversation turns to Beric and his miraculous resurrection. Turns out he’s been brought back six times. And he loses a part of himself every time.

This is another instance of the show doing great justice to a character. I didn’t really find Beric all that interesting in the novel.

A few days later (I’m assuming), while Arya practices her archery, the Brotherhood is visited by a mysterious troop of people with a woman in red leading them. 

Melisandre says her greetings to Thoros, mentioning he didn’t fulfill his duty to convert Robert Baratheon (remember him?).

She’s speechless when she meets Beric. It should be impossible, she mentions. Thoros shouldn’t have this kind of power. He tells her his story: a disbeliever until Beric died the first time. All he does is ask the Lord of Light for help.

Melisandre asks Beric about the “other side.” He says there is no other side, “only darkness.” It makes sense, what with murderous shadow ghost babies and all. But this isn’t the real reason she’s come; the Brotherhood have someone she needs...

If you thought it was Arya, you’d be wrong. It’s Gendry. Robert’s illegitimate son. Arya protests, but it’s useless. They take Gendry, and give the Brotherhood a bag of gold for their troubles.

Arya confronts Melisandre. She looks into Arya’s eyes and sees a darkness, and other eyes (her list) “eyes you’ll shut forever.” Melisandre leaves, but tells Arya they’ll meet again.

Bran—He awakes to Meera and Osha bickering about skinning rabbits. Which leads them to insult each other about their skills as hunters. They almost come to blows until Bran intervenes. He orders them to make peace, and they do, begrudgingly.

Just as things calm down, Jojen has a vision in his sleep. A vision which brings on a seizure. Meera is at his side, cradling him, putting a bit in his mouth and offering soothing words. Bran is scared by it. “The visions take their toll,” Meera says.
Jojen wakes, and says his vision involved one Jon Snow...

Jon Snow—The Wall is very close now, Orell questions Jon about it’s defenses. He tells him what he knows. Orell doesn’t belive him. Giantsbane steps in and says he believes him, but is still wary.

“You owe me a debt...” Ygritte steals his sword and he chases after her. He finds her in a cave with a nifty hot spring. She strips, to Jon’s surprise. And she tries to act all tough and cool, and then Jon goes down on her.

“I just wanted to kiss you there, is all.” he says. Then they have more sex and it’s awesome.
Later, the Wildlings get ready to scale the Wall. Giantsbane gives him an ice axe and gives him climbing advice. Ygritte gives Jon a pair of climbing boots. And she reveals a secret: she knows he’s still a Crow. “Don’t betray me,” she says. Doesn’t all her dialogue just reek of foreshadowing?

They climb, and climb, and climb some more. 

Ygritte starts an avalanche of sorts with a poorly placed ice pick, and her and Jon almost fall to their deaths (no thanks to Orell cutting their line, either). But they make it to the top of the Wall eventually. And then they get all kissy kissy. Just remember, Jon, don't betray Ygritte, or else...
Sam—He learns how to start a fire from Gilly. He shows her the obsidian knife he found way back when, and tells her how great Castle Black is with it’s food, fires, and singing. Gilly asks him to sing her a song. He looks bashful at first, but does. These two are adorable.

Robb—It’s hard times for Robb, as Lord Karstark and his men murdered the two Lannister boys in cold blood. Robb supposes it’s some kind of vengeance for Karstark’s own sons, but Robb isn’t listening. He orders Karstark’s men to be hanged, even though he realizes the consequences. If he decides to execute Karstark, he will lose a large part of his army. And he does.

Later, in the war room, Talisa asks Robb to point out the different lands. And this gives him the idea to take Casterly Rock (the Lannister’s homeland), but he’ll need more men. And that means asking the Freys for help.
You remember the Freys. The creepy old man with a ton of daughters, one of which was supposed to marry Robb. But Robb went and fell in love with Talisa.

They meet with some of the Frey sons, and they ask Robb make a formal apology to Walder Frey himself. Also, they ask that Edmure—Robb’s uncle—marry one of their sisters. At first, Edmure refuses, but Robb asks him to do this as recompense for his earlier strategic blunder. Lots of weddings happening this season.

Stannis and Davos—Stannis decides to pay a visit to his actual family. Did you know he has a wife? Her name’s Selyse. He goes to her to confess he’s been screwing Melisandre, but she’s fine with it. She “wept with joy” at the news. Oh, and she keeps her stillborn children in jars of formaldehyde. Because that’s what sane people do.

Then he visits his daughter, Shireen. The things we don't know about this guy...

She’s happy to see him, and asks after Davos, who always comes to visit her (something tells me Davos is more of a father to her than her actual father). He tells her that Davos betrayed him and is in the dungeon.

Later that night in the dungeons, Shireen pays Davos a visit while the one guard sleeps. She’s come to check on him and to give him a book to read while he’s imprisoned. Davos confesses he can’t read, and Shireen offers to teach him. He’s concerned they’ll get in trouble, but Shireen doesn’t miss a beat.
Theon—He gets tortured by that sexy torturer some more, who might be one of Karstark’s sons. Or not. Honestly, do we care at this point? Kill him or don’t. Just be done with this boring storyline already.
Daenerys—Jorah and Barriston chat while they convoy travels. Jorah is really fishing for information about himself. You’ll recall he was originally a spy for Robert, but then had a change of heart. Barriston doesn’t seem to know this, or chooses not to.

Dany talks to the Unsullied commanders. She had tasked them with choosing a leader from amongst their ranks. One comes forth, Grey Worm. Missandei tells Dany the Unsullied are given names of vermin. She’s disgusted by this, but the Unsullied are okay with it.

King’s Landing—Cersei enlists Littlefinger to dig up dirt on the Tyrells. 

Through his spy, Oliver, Littlefinger finds out that Loras is gay (duh) and they plan to marry Sansa to him. Also, we got to see some gay sex!

Tyrion consults with Olenna about the upcoming wedding. Finances are tight in the kingdom, and they might not have enough to afford it. Olenna, after reading Tyrion for filth, agrees to pay for half the wedding expenses.

Cersei and Tyrion meet with their father, who informs them of some news. Since the Tyrells intend to marry Sansa off to Loras, they will instead marry her to Tyrion instead. And, just to wipe the shit-eating grin off of Cersei’s face, Tywin commands her to marry Loras instead.

Later, Tywin tries to negotiate Cersei’s marriage to Loras with Olenna. She’s not having it; Cersei’s getting too old to bear children. He tries throwing Loras’ homosexuality in her face, but she rolls her eyes “he’s a swordswallower through and through.” And she even alludes to Tywin having experimented with boys when he was a kid. Oh, and that gay sex is nothing compared to incest.
Tywin counters with appointing Loras to the Kingsguard, which means he will bear no children in service to the king. The Tyrell name will fade. Olenna calls his bluff.

Sansa chats with Loras—she’s still totally clueless, by the way—about how awful King’s Landing is. They chat about how fabulous the wedding will be.
Meanwhile, Cersei and Tyrion have a game of “who’s got it worse?” Tyrion asks his sister about the attempt on his life during the battle of Blackwatch. Her silence speaks volumes; it was Joffery.

He then pays Sansa and Shae a visit to break the bad news. Meet your new husband, Sansa!

Varys and Littlefinger have another one of their chats. Seems Littlefinger didn’t appreciate Varys and Ros plotting against him (trying to marry Sansa to Loras). So, he gave Ros to Joffery, who played a game of target practice with her.

Littlefinger sails away for the Eyrie, leaving a weeping Sansa to fend for herself at King’s Landing. That girl cannot catch a break.

Let's take a moment to remember one of the best characters that wasn't even in the novels. I'm talking about Ros, aka Esme Bianco. I'm very sad to see her go.