Game of Thrones Review: A Life on Trial

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This week on Game of Thrones, Tyrion stood trial for the murder of Joffrey in King's Landing.

The familial circus being acted out under Tywin's tent took center stage, but was also used to make a very strong case in Braavos.

The shot of Staniss's ship sailing through its gates to open Game of Thrones Season 4 Episode 6 gave some perspective to just how big and flourishing a city Braavos is. To reinforce the power of the Iron Bank, I thought it a nice touch how Stannis - a man who lays claim to the Iron Throne - was made to sit on a simple stone bench.

From his own lofted chair, Tycho the banker pledged his allegiance to Tywin and passed judgment on Stannis and his people.

Across the Narrow Sea, your books are filled with words like usurper and madmen and blood right. Here our books are filled with numbers. We prefer the stories they tell. More plain, less open to interpretation.

Tycho Nestoris

As his request for support was denied, Stannis shot a burning look at Davos. He turned to walk away defeated, but then Davos spoke. He recognized that Tywin was a good horse to back, shrewdly reminding Tycho of how old the Lannister head was.

After Tywin, there is not much to expect in terms of leadership. To further make his case for Stannis, Davos removed his glove to show his severed fingers courtesy of the very man he was promoting.

He doesn't just talk about paying people back, he does it.


Back at Meereen, Dany showed she also pays her debts and then some. Was anyone else surprised that shepherd was able to track down the charred remains of the goat taken by Drogon? What a scene that was prior, when the young boy threw that last rock and heard it land with a thud.

This, of course, made Cersei's dismissal of Dany's offspring, during the meeting of the Small Council, rather amusing. Tywin didn't seem too alerted at her potential threat either, but did make preparations to pen a letter which he asked Varys to get inside Meereen.

Tywin noted a war had not been won by dragons in 300 years, but he is too smart to simply dismiss Dany, having heard that latest update.

While the Lannisters prepared to put one of their brother's on trial, Yara Greyjoy prepared her group of Ironborn to rescue hers. It was interesting how she reemphasized that it was their prince that they were going to save.

When it came to almost certain defeat in the kennels of the Dreadfort, though, she turned and ran. Her iron resolve took a major blow after seeing the mental state of Theon Reek.

In case anyone had forgotten, Ramsay reminded us what a true sociopath he is. Safe to say the blood he was covered in, when he surprised Yara, belonged to the woman he was in bed with moments earlier. So even when he extended Reek a reward for his loyalty, I found myself flinching along with Theon as he settled into the tub.

Any glimpse of humanity Ramsay seemed to have vanished as he cruelly smirked at his handiwork when Theon was made to remove his clothes. He wants Reek to pretend to be Theon, but has he pushed his prisoner too far to act any different than what we saw in the kennel?

Tyrion kept his cool, even cracking a joke as Jaime's men moved to shackle him for the trial. It was that unbreakable spirit that Jaime seeked to spare when he asked his father's mercy. 

Jaime should have thought out the deal he proposed to Tywin a bit more, but he did negotiate a way to let his brother live. All diplomacy went out the window, however, after Shae's surprise testimony jolted Tyrion into speaking his mind about Joffrey's murder.

Watching your vicious bastard die gave me more relief that a thousand lying whores.


His request for a trial by combat prompted the obvious question: is who will he fight? My first thought was it would have to be Jaime to take up a sword against his brother, but now I'm betting this latest development will provide the stage for us to meet The Mountain.

Hopefully when the time comes, Tyrion's bite will match the bark we saw as he addressed Cersei and the people in the courtroom. What a powerful scene that was as he described his lifetime on trial for being a dwarf.

It was an episode where we were reminded just how complex all these characters are. On the lighter side of things, we got to see the normally diffident Davos in good spirits as he visited Salladhor in the pleasure house.

Having nailed his speech to the bankers, it was great to see him joke with his friend and even take in a little bit of the scenery.

Oberyn, who until now, seemed focused only on his revenge and his own pleasure, showed his inquisitive side as he questioned Varys about his origins. Despite being surprised at Oberyn's ear for accents - or lack thereof - Varys remained as cryptic as ever when he described what being free from desire can yield.

I get the feeling his glance toward the throne was less about him sitting there some day and more about alerting Oberyn to his potential.

The chain of events that would have to unfold for Oberyn to even be in line for the throne are too numerous to get into, but Varys has shown that the intel his birds provide would be invaluable to anyone who possesses that power.


Editor Rating: 5.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (104 Votes)

Awesome Peter Dinklage... Even better than what I pictured when I was reading the book... What a season.. loving this.


As fun as Tyrion's demand for TBCombat was, it makes no sense that it could surprise Tywin, Jamie or Cersei. They know Tyrion demanded TBC before. Anyone would demand TBC versus a rigged trial. The writers are hacks, who turned three cunning masters of political strategy into simpletons using the Pirates of the Carribbean "parlay" joke.


If anyone think Tyrion is going to be saved based on trial by combat you have another thing coming(atleast if the books are anything to go by)..
The twists will keep on coming...

@ vishawish

I'm actually anxious as to how they're going to portray it... They changed so many things already from the books.


OH.MY.GOSH !!!! Tyrion, what a speech ! What a performance ! The look on Cersei's face. Mmmm priceless. Jamie was horrified. But them truths had to come out. I guess Tyrion kinda lost it when he saw and heard Shae, her twisting reality. Why oh why did the writers go there. Fair enough the books are the books. But they changed a lot of things, so why not change that ! Oberyn cracked me up though ! Gosh that man is golden ! I cannot wait for the combat. Who will fight for Tyrion !
Dany learning the joys of being Queen. Very boring. Though, that man's plea for his father's body was interesting.
Yara's resolve was admirable but Theon is gone, he's broken... And Ramsay wanting his to play Theon again is just cruel. But hey, it's Ramsay's style so...
I love Davos. Such a good man. Stannis is still a prick though. Love Salladhor as well.
Jamie bargaining with Tywell was sad. Sure he wanted to get his brother out of there but Tywell ? Really ?


Awesome episode! I love Tyrion, that speech towards the end of the episode was epic! The look on everyone's face especially Jaime. He was like what are you doing?! I am very interested for the trial by combat as I have read the books. It is going to be absolutely gratifying. Theon/ Reek is so broken now. I almost feel sorry for him, but I have to remind myself that he betrayed the Stark family. That is unforgiveable in my books. I am waiting patiently for the Stark family to be back on top including Jon Snow. Davos is a good man, I like his character. To bad he is loyal to such a prick of a king. I really dislike Stannis, but I am interested in their next move for the throne.


Once again, Tyrion telling the truth was awesome,
Cercei adknowledge how psycho his son was, but still doesnt learn, or regret about terrible parenting
When Shae came in i thought " i hope some love dreamers lost his hearts and souls, love is as old as human race, just 2 million years, the nature, the universe, much much older"


Davos! Salladhor Saan! And Tyrion! Oh my god, Tyrion... My heart broke for him all over again as Shae gave her testimony. That was the one detail from the books I'd really hoped they'd change - and it seemed plausible that they might. Alas, in the end, no such luck... and the worst is arguably yet to come. That man needs a hug... Am I completely insane, or would Ramsay actually make a decent king? He's every bit as cruel as Joffrey - maybe even more so, if that's even possible - but also more in control, and far, FAR smarter. At this point, if he were a contender for the throne I'd almost be inclined to back him. (Stannis would of course be perfect, if not for that whole Melisandre thing...) Although I suppose Tommen might grow up to be a pretty decent king himself. That's IF he grows up, of course... the "kings dropping like flies" quip remains pretty apt. (I don't think the blood on Ramsay belonged to the woman, by the way... wasn't that his co-sadist he was "hunting" with a couple of episodes back? A match made in... well, probably *not* heaven, but you get my drift.) Y'know who'd be the *best* king though? Jaime. But that's never gonna happen. Oh well. Maybe Tommen will take after his old man... although preferably not with the whole falling-in-love-with-his-sister thing. :p

@ JK

I thought they would change Shae's story as well. Was crushed when she came back... This is not gonna be good... I too don't think it was the woman's blood that was on Ramsay. I think he killed a few men before getting to the kennels.

@ JK

No way, Ramsay is smart at short term, but he didnt go hunt the stark boys, big mistake (and a good look for our favorite starks, at least that stay alive so far)


Good Good Good for Tyrion!! He finally stood up and said what no one else has balls to say! All the collective Gasps behind him Please these people are glad the King is dead too. They killed off all my favorite characters in first season, he's the only favorite I have left besides Dany! I can't wait for her to take the rest of the Lannisters out!

@ Angie

Dont forget Jon... he is my favorite too
His presence at the wall remark something very important
Starks always defend the North


It was good to see Dany trying to handle every-day-politics. She really needs to learn how dull, bureaucratic and repetitive being a queen is like. Also glad the writers gave Stannis FINALLY some of his bookcharacter-morality and a tiny glimpse of what an honourable man he actually is. I LOVED how Jamie pleaded to his father, although I had the impression Tywin planned exactly that. Giving the people an open trial with a convicted murder to underline 'Tommen's just rule', regaining his heir so the Lannisters would not become extinct and getting rid of Tyrion once and for all without becoming a kinslayer himself.
Tyrion saw through all of that. And crushed his father's plans with a single sentence. That scene was absolutely awesome and brilliantly played.

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Game of Thrones Season 4 Episode 6 Quotes

Tis a big and beautiful world. Most of us live and die in the same corner where we were born and never get to see any of it. I don't want to be most of us.


Across the Narrow Sea, your books are filled with words like usurper and madmen and blood right. Here our books are filled with numbers. We prefer the stories they tell. More plain, less open to interpretation.

Tycho Nestoris