In the opening credits we see King’s Landing (Baratheon sigil), Winterfell (Stark sigil) – I love the godswood, The Wall (complete with elevator), Dothraki Sea, and Vaes Dothrak.
IMDb synopsis: While Bran recovers from his fall, Ned takes only his daughters to King’s Landing. Jon Snow goes with his uncle Benjen to the Wall. Tyrion joins them.
We open with the crossing of the Dothraki Sea which is not really a sea but a massive meadow. Daenerys comes off as a bit haughty. Jorah tries to calm her with a little horse jerky and as she looks at Drogo, Jordah says “It will get easier.” Jorah is a little creepy at this point. Well, he stays creepy pretty much throughout.
Tyrion! Hair of the dog? HOLY SHIT! I forgot that Tyrion draws back and smacks the shit out of Joffrey!!! YAS! And he smacks him again in the opposite direction! DOUBLE YAS! Little shit.
“I’m telling Mother!” “Go, tell her.” And another smack. “The prince will remember that little lord.” I wonder how much time passed between the filming of Ep 1 and Ep2? His hair is a tad darker in this episode. Tyrion will be headed to The Wall. “I just want to stand on top off the wall and piss off the edge of the world.” Death is so final… I love that Tyrion knows there is something odd about the injury of Bran and he mentions to Jamie how he hopes he wakes because he is curious what he’d say. Jamie does not go on the defense but more or less shrugs it off.
Wait, in the book Cersei never had a child by Robert. In the book, when she goes to see Ned to discuss his realization of who fathered her children, she tells him that she became pregnant with Robert’s child and had an abortion out of her hatred for the King. I think I prefer the show’s version as it gives a more human light to Cersei. I truly feel that Lena Headey is an amazing actress to draw out my collective anger and loathing for Cersei.
Also unlike the book, the show allows us to see John at the smith having needle made for Arya. I love the exchange with Jamie, about the Night’s Watch. “It’s only for life.” Jamie is such a dick!
Jon then makes his way to see Arya as she packs to leave for King’s Landing. The story of the love of siblings, even while knowing one is a bastard – theirs is one of my favorite relationships in the series. Needle! “It’s so skinny.” “So are you.” This is the one tool, other than her wit, that will carry her throughout the story. “First lesson, stick them with the pointy end.”
“I’m going to miss you.” And so begins a separation of siblings that, when eventually reunited, would make our hearts burst at the seams! Jon then makes his way to Bran for more goodbyes. Again I am reminded that I despise Lady Catelyn. Jon speaks to Bran, despite the protestations of Catelyn. Jon truly loves each of his siblings. After that beautiful heartfelt moment, Catelyn ends it with “I want you to leave.”
In the book, Jon stands up for himself to a greater degree and Ned Stark does not see the exchange between Jon and Catelyn. It makes me feel as if Ned is a lesser person for not standing up for Jon.
Oh Sean Bean… you should really just stay.
In the exchange with Robb and Jon, Jon says he knows Bran will be ok because “You Starks are hard to kill.” Well, some of them will prove to be. Robb? Not so much.
“You might not have my name but you have my blood.” Slight clue? Ned deflects questions about Jon’s mother and tells him the next time they see each other he will tell him about his mother. And so begins the tearing apart of a family and taking pivotal information to the grave.
As a person who studies genealogy, this pisses me right the eff off.
Maybe my favorite chuckle of the episode: “Thank the gods for Bessie and her tits!” Speaking with the king, Ned gives a fake name for the mother of his bastard. That lie bothers me quite a bit. The book allowed him to refuse to give it, which bolsters his honor (IMHO).
Oh hey… there are Emilia’s boobs! SHORT scene of a quickie and then we move on to the group making their way to The Wall.
“My repulsive nephew will be the king after him…” At least Tyrion is honest. They speak of grumpkins and snarks!
The show glosses over how batshit Catelyn becomes at the bedside of Bran. I like actually hearing the wolves baying at the window. Then we hear: “FIRE!” And Catelyn stays with Bran and she is alone when the intruder comes.
“You’re not supposed to be here. Nobody’s supposed to be here. It’s a mercy. He’s dead already.” I am amazed by how the faces of some of the most minor (and brief) characters stayed in my mind as I listened to the book on Audibles! I still wince though, watching this scene. Her hands grasping the blade. And the dire wolf!! His mouth red with the assassin’s blood.
The dragon origin story being told to Dany. The moon was a dragon egg. “Can you teach me how to make the Khal happy?”
The scenes are quickly paced in this episode, switching back and forth a bit. There is a QUICK scene of the group making it to the wall and Jon’s uncle Benjen telling him: “Welcome.” We get a good look at the immensity of The Wall.
While Catelyn makes her way to the “scene of the crime” to find out why Bran is now broken, there is a really great overhead shot of her looking up. There will be a scene in a later season where Sansa stands in the same place and has the exact same shot. I never put those two together until reading a blog on the comparisons of mother to daughter and their show arcs.
Her detective work pays off as she finds one of Cersei’s hairs on the cleared floor where the Lannister twins “tousled”. She gathers her people together (those left behind after the Ned left with most of their household for King’s Landing). She tells them that something is afoul and she believes it is the Lannister’s undertaking, that they shoved Bran from the window.
We get a first look at the dagger which was meant to kill Bran.
Of course Lady Catelyn takes it upon herself (arrogantly) to travel to Ned to tell him of the assassination attempt and her belief that the Lannisters are the ones who set it up. If only she had let someone else go. If only.
Now, we have Sex Ed with the Khaleesi. “Are you a slave Khaleesi? Then don’t make love like a slave.”
Oh hey… Let’s see what she has learned…
Who says an old Drogo can’t learn a new trick? And just like the sibling quickie, we move quickly along to Sansa and the scene that gives me anxiety – the wooden sword fight that would be the demise of the innocent direwolf, Lady.
And this is when Joffrey truly changes and the Stark girls are worse for the wear. Oh, Nymeria!
This is really a major turning point. It is the beginning of the end for Ned. Robert betrayed Ned in this moment, the trust felt broken. Then Sansa betrays Arya and another trust is broken. This, in my opinion, is a pivotal moment. Cersei “And what of the direwolf?” Ugh – the queen took her vengeance on Ned by killing Lady. Bitch.
The wolf is of the north, she deserves better than a butcher.
And the Hound…ugh…he ran down the butcher’s boy.
As Ned snaps the neck of the wolf, Bran’s eyes open. Was this meant to be a sacrifice? The coincidence of Bran waking at the same moment that Ned Stark has to kill Sansa’s direwolf Lady may be the first harbinger of his destiny that he will become the Three-Eyed Raven, who sees through the eyes of animals as well as has visions of the past, present, and future.
After the events in this episode, the wolf named Lady (real name Zunni) was adopted by the actress Sophie Turner, who played Sansa Stark.
And now for a few extras:
|Sean Bean||…||Eddard ‘Ned’ Stark|
|Mark Addy||…||Robert Baratheon|
|Nikolaj Coster-Waldau||…||Jaime Lannister|
|Michelle Fairley||…||Catelyn Stark|
|Lena Headey||…||Cersei Lannister|
|Emilia Clarke||…||Daenerys Targaryen|
|Iain Glen||…||Jorah Mormont|
|Harry Lloyd||…||Viserys Targaryen|
|Kit Harington||…||Jon Snow|
|Sophie Turner||…||Sansa Stark|
|Maisie Williams||…||Arya Stark|
|Richard Madden||…||Robb Stark|
|Alfie Allen||…||Theon Greyjoy|
|Isaac Hempstead Wright||…||Bran Stark|
|Jack Gleeson||…||Joffrey Baratheon|
|Rory McCann||…||Sandor ‘The Hound’ Clegane|
|Peter Dinklage||…||Tyrion Lannister|
|Donald Sumpter||…||Maester Luwin|
|Jamie Sives||…||Jory Cassel|
|Ron Donachie||…||Rodrik Cassel|
|Joseph Mawle||…||Benjen Stark|
|Wilko Johnson||…||Ilyn Payne|
|Luke Barnes||…||Rast (as Luke McEwan)|
|Lalor Roddy||…||Catspaw Assassin|
|Conor Delaney||…||Lannister Guard|
|Callum Wharry||…||Tommen Baratheon|
|Aimee Richardson||…||Myrcella Baratheon|
|Jason Momoa||…||Khal Drogo|