‘Game of Thrones’ Review and Recap: Episode 1.3 – ‘Lord Snow’


I’m taking a slightly different approach to this recap and review as I examine episode three, titled “Lord Snow” of HBO’s “Game of Thrones”. We’ll take a look at the episode with brief character recaps and a couple of clips mixed in followed by a few discussion points before turning it over to you for your take on what went right and what didn’t exactly work for you.

Lord Stark (Sean Bean)

Ned finally arrives at The King’s Landing, where he meets Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau). A bit of backstory comes to the forefront as we learn Jaime was the slayer of the previous King, the Mad King Targaryen. The previous king, Daenerys’ dad, was killing people for sport at court, and it fell to Jaime Lannister to assassinate him.

Then it’s time to meet with the council, a center of intrigue if ever there was one. Here the Lannister’s pull becomes apparent, as they are funding much of the kingdom’s economy. If you’re keeping track at home the Starks hold the north, and have a sterling “salt of the Earth” reputation. The Lannisters are much more slippery politically. It’s crucial to note that as the story continues, less and less judgment will be leveled, and there won’t be one conclusive way to attain and hold power. As I said in my previous recap, “Game of Thrones” is at its heart a story of political intrigue, and the longer it goes, the more balanced it becomes, until finally you’re not so much cheering for individual houses as you are philosophies.

Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey)

We learn the central theme of Cersei’s politics — expediency. She councils her young son to have mistresses if he likes, and then tells him he’s a warrior. Joffrey makes his case for a centralized army and Cersei has to bring him back to the light, but the source of Stark power becomes apparent, for the north is too wild and too large to hold.

Cersei later meets with Jamie and chides him for the attempt on Bran. The full “devil may care” attitude of Jaime is revealed. He’s fearless, and fearsome.

Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead-Wright)
Unlike the predictions in the comments from the last recap, Bran doesn’t remember anything, and he’s paralyzed from the waist down. Newcomers to the story will eventually learn that “Game of Thrones” eschews easy answers.

Lady Stark (Michelle Fairley)

The HBO version doesn’t do an excellent job of explaining why Cat Stark is attempting to enter King’s Landing on the sly, but the answer is she’s concerned about Lannister interference and influence as she attempts to track down the source of Bran’s assassin. It’s revealed that the dagger recovered from the assassin was the imp’s, Tyrion Lannister. This news will send the story in a very interesting direction.

Lord Stark becomes aware of Lady Stark’s arrival, with some cheeky help from Petyr Baelish (nicknamed “Littlefinger”). The Starks become aware of their predicament. They can’t accuse the Lannisters of anything, but they also can’t trust anyone.

The Stark couple parts, with a promise from Lord Stark that he’ll approach the king if they get real proof. Vaya con dios.

Jon Snow (Kit Harington)
The depression of The Wall is in full effect, though Snow’s fighting prowess dominates the rest of the poor Wall recruits. Luckily, he soon learns (with some cheeky help from Tyrion) that being better at combat than his fellow men of the black doesn’t really get him anything. He begins to train his enemies, so that he might have friends.

Arya and Sansa Stark (Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner)
Ayra begins her “dancing” lessons, thank God, for her storyline was getting dead boring. Sansa continues her reign of teenaged terror, always siding with her betrothed, Joffrey Lannister, over her Stark family brood.

King Robert (Mark Addy)

The King exchanges war stories about his first kill. It becomes apparent the King misses the days when things were simple, when he was leading the rebellion, killing nobles.

“Kingslayer” Jaime Lannister joins the conversation. They are of different classes, The Lanisters are highborn, while Robert is definitely rougher around the edges.

Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke)

She stops the horde, to rest the slaves, when her brother attempts the assault her. It doesn’t go well for him! Daenerys uses up her last little bit of sympathy for her brother. Interesting note of trivia: the horse-rider who ropes Viserys can also be seen in an episode of “The Borgias”.

The Dothraki war machine becomes evident, they are experts at speed combat, and they are merciless if the enemy doesn’t immediately submit. Daenerys reveals she’s pregnant to Khal Drogo, he seems pleased.

Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage)

The imp continues his survey of The Wall. Benjen and Tyrion have an interesting chat about the burden of protecting society. We also learn about the importance of seasons in “Game of Thrones”, as winters can last years after long summers.

All in all, a fairly solid episode, but it will probably be considered the last of the “setup” episodes. From here on out people will start making hard choices with real consequences. Episode four contains a pivotal interaction between a Lannister and a Stark, in way it’s the series “Archduke Ferdinand” moment, from there on out the die will be cast.

Best Moment of The Show: When it’s revealed King Targaryen’s last words were “burn them all.”

Discussion Points

Who is your favorite character so far?

In the “Game of Thrones”, do you prefer the Lannister, Stark, or Targaryen house?

Is George R. R. Martin’s story too complicated to work as a television series?