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Game of Thrones Review: What's It All About?

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Since being fingered for Joffrey's death, each scene featuring Tyrion has taken on added significance.

With his trial by combat finally upon him, he and Jaime reminisced about their beetle bashing cousin Orson. Tyrion shared how he searched in vain for the purpose behind his cousin's obsessive behavior.

And his lack of an answer cast a cynical pall over the rest of Game of Thrones Season 4 Episode 8.

Viper Attacks
The Viper is on the attack in this scene from Game of Thrones. He would not get the last laugh, however.

The motivating factors driving the characters on the show are as numerous as they are. Grey worm has been a devoted follower of Dany's, but what drives him? He showed this week that while he captains the Unsullied for Dany's purposes with unwavering devotion, he is not above having desires of his own.

There's flattery and then there is someone saying they don't regret the day they were castrated because it lead to meeting you. What a scene that was between Grey Worm and Missandei.

While Missandei's heart fluttered, Dany had hers broken by Jorah's. He, of course, was correct in saying the appearance of the document was Tywin's work, but one can hardly blame Dany for her reaction.

We know Jorah to be a converted and very loyal follower of Dany's, but Tywin's plan worked in weakening her ranks by exposing a hidden truth.

Ygritte may be the weakest link in the wilding army's ranks, but thankfully so: she showed Gilly and her baby mercy in Molestown. The gesture confirmed she still has a soft spot in her heart in which there still may be some feelings for Jon Snow residing even.

Elsewhere, Ramsay showed the men at Moat Cailin no mercy after Reek did his job and got them to open their gates. The axe to the head of the garrison commander came not a moment too soon, as it looked like Reek was about to crack under the strain of the moment. He did enough, though, to make his master proud, helping him earn a new name in the process.

How interesting to see Ramsay bestowed with the name Bolton, as such having his position in life legitimized. It reemphasized just how emasculating an act his renaming of Theon was.

Sansa revealed her real name to the nobility of the Vale and in doing so gave her testimony on Petyr's behalf great credibility. By being a party to murder, she said goodbye to her innocence in a way. To further depict the significance of the moment, she later appeared dressed in black with her hair matching in color.

Together she and Petyr looked set to help Robin emerge from his nest on high to visit his lands. Another child in a position of power with adults pulling his strings.

Sandor must have felt like someone was pulling his leg after he learned the woman he hoped would pay his reward for Arya had died just days prior. Arya could not hold back her amusement and outburst of laughter provided one of the episodes rare moments of levity.

The battle to decide Tyrion's fate was, of course, the most anticipated moment of the episode - and Oberyn looked ready to deliver a show. As he repeated his accusations to The Mountain again and again, the scene took on the feel of Inigo Montoya's duel with the Six Fingered Man at the end of The Princess Bride.

Sadly for him, the outcome was not the same and vengeance lost out.

The action was very one-sided with The Mountain looking like it was he who had too much wine before the fight. With that one punch - which separated Oberyn from a number of his teeth - we saw the storied power he possessed.

Then we saw the side of him that had burned the face of his brother years ago, as he confessed his crimes to Oberyn moments before crushing his head with his bare hands.

Along with Oberyn's skull went Tryion's hopes of survival, as he was immediately sentenced to death by his father.

Will the series actually kill of its most popular character... again?

Here's your first look at Game of Thrones Season 4 Episode 9:

Review

Editor Rating: 5.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (114 Votes)
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I hate this... I knew it was gonna happen but still... Oberyn !!! They made us love the guy to get him killed like that ! Hell no ! WRONG !!! Hang in there Tyrion. That was so gruesome ! His paramount scream... so sad. Of course the Mountain did it ! Though I think Oberyn got him good. I don't want to spoil so I'll stop there and wait for the next episode.
Missandei and Grey Worm... How cute.
Dany and Jorah, yeah long time coming. Banishedzone lol ! But I have to say that it was a 50/50 situation. Sure he was a spy but he never took the pardon. Instead he chose to serve her and stuff. Oh well, I cannot wait for his adventures out of Meeren.
Gosh Tyrion's face and Jamie's... Totally can feel their pain.
Now Sansa, WOW !!! HOT !!! That girl is stepping up her game ! Even Baelish loked impressed ! I wonder ho the writers are gonna go about with her SL.
Arya snapping the way she did was just hilarious. Though why is she in the Eyrie ? Weird. It's as if she was mocking the hound but also laughing at her own predicament.
Ygritte's soul is not as dark as I thought it would be... Though the way she killed them people ! She still spared Gilly's life and her baby's and I commend her for that.
Ramsay is no Snow now, he is a Bolton. The whole Theon Grejoy scam was just plain weird. You could tell that Reek took over at some point when he just flipped the switch. Creepy.

Jtl

Oberyn where's the dagger you had on you that you pulled out on that guys hand in your first scene! You think he would of had that as a back up just incase he got to close to the mountain! Plus when he took the blade out of his chest wouldn't the mountain have bled out?!?! Where's the pool of blood around him? It was still a great scene but you think Oberyn would of had something else up his sleeve after plotting for his revenge for so long.

Fifty
@ Vampbarbie

Actually he did have an ace up his sleeve..that's why he was so cocky..Since you haven't read the books you can maybe find out in next episode.

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@ Vampbarbie

I think that one shot to the face pretty much did Oberyn in - he was too dazed to do anything else at that point. The real tragedy is, he'd already won the fight... if he weren't so fixated on getting a confession, he could've just ended the mountain and that would have been that. Oh well. I'm still holding on to an ever-so-tiny flicker of hope that Sandor gets to be the one to ultimately end his monstrous brother once and for all. (With any other series it'd be almost inevitable, but GoT doesn't always seem to follow the laws of narrative causality...)

Jtl
@ JK

That was some shot to the face he took. But if he wanted a confession just like any TV show or movie I've watched. You would torture the guy or threaten. Threatening wouldn't work against the mountain. So it would be obvious to slowly torture him. He should of started to cut him limb from limb. I know the writer likes to shock people. But you think that if someone killed your sister and her kids. That Oberyn would of tortured him that would make sense. So a lot of unrealistic things had to happen for the mountain to win.

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I was hoping the show would divert from the books and allow Oberyn to live. RIP Prince Oberyn aka coolest character. Brutal end but epic. :( Arya's laughter had me cracking up. Poor girl, I understand her need to laugh at the irony. Also I think she is laughing at the Hound, who kidnapped her in hopes of money. Yet every time he tries to collect it never goes his way. Sansa is becoming more interesting. Let's see how well she plays the GOT. I am predicting in future seasons she will kill Little Finger.

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They can't kill off Tyrion! He's my favorite character, and flawed as he may be, he is one of the only characters with real intelligence, decency, and mercy, which it seems they will not show him. I can't imagine GoT without him. The other good character is Dany and they'd better not kill her. Oberyn was my third favorite--he was so wonderfully depraved but came from a decent and civilized kingdom (compared to the others) The head crushing haunted me all day (I watched it this morning and it cast a pall on me) and made me wonder if the series has taken brutality a bit too far. It was definitely the most awful thing I have ever seen on TV or in a movie. Oberyn didn't deserve to die that way. He was brave, a good fighter, and was trying to avenge his sister's murder. The whole idea of a giant matched up with a man of normal size is just so ridiculously unfair. It's laughable. They might just as well not had a fight at all and executed Tyrion--they're hell bent on it no matter what. I don't know what can save Tyrion now, but something better save him or I will not be inclined to watch anymore. Good protagonists are needed in any epic saga like this, to balance out the murder, rape, mayhem and general chaos.

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@ suzjazz

I suspect if they killed off Tyrion they'd lose a huge audience. He is a huge fan favourite.

Chris-larrondo

RIP Oberyn freakin loved the guy but damn finish him off!!! Writers made him give a heart felt speech that made me love him more and then kill him. NOOOOOO Anyway a great episode. I know its great when I have a hard time getting to sleep once it is over. Worse thing about this show is that it is 10 episodes instead lets say 15 or more!

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@ Chris Larrondo

I agree! We need more of this show each year. The fact that we only have two episodes left blows my mind. It feels like I was just watching the trailers for this season a month ago.

Fifty
@ Logan

You gonna enjoy it though...It's gonna be a cracker if they follow the books (which they do)

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Wow. That head-popping thing has got to be one of the most horrible things I've ever seen... I was just expecting him to get run through, so I was totally unprepared for that one. I think Arya might be turning into the Joker. The whole series thus far has, for her, been one incredibly long bad day. Every time things improve a little for her, the other shoe drops and she's worse off than she was before... it'd be pretty amazing if she *wasn't* a little crazy by this point. Oh well. Valar Morghulis. On the upside, I'm a bit impressed by Sansa. Maybe she's actually learning a thing or two.

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"one can hardly blame Dany for her reaction"
Uhm, yes. One totally can. She said herself the document was from the year she and Jorah met. And yet she is too dump, too emotional, too unforgiving to recognize JORAH NEVER TOOK ADVANTAGE OF THAT PARDON! Seriously, how does this girl ever want to rule if she can't admit people make mistakes or characters change? How will she ever be able to make political alliances if she takes every breach absolutely personal? I liked the change to the book concerning Arya and the Hound, but I'm curious how they will proceed from here. Standing right in front of the Gate they should've asked who's in charge now. That would be Robyn, officially, who's also Aryas cousin and Sandor's best chance of getting his money, so I'm looking forward on how it will evolve. And I totally LOVED the change in Sansa's story! At first I was confused when she told her true name. But then, one scene later, it became clear she didn't act on Littlefinger's orders. She decided for herself he was the 'lesser evil'. Not because she trusts him but because she knows what he wants. Furthermore, she told this right to his face! Remember? Littlefinger told Sansa on the ship she should always know her enemies, their desires. And she turned that against him! When she walked down those stairs, I was almost screaming 'Hail to the future queen of the north' ;-)

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@ San

--- SPOILER --- I just have to get this off my chest: What if (!) Arya and the Hound somehow make it past the gate, but LF, Sansa and Robyn are gone and Sandor's blood poisoning takes place in the Vale. Arya leaves him behind, just like in the books, but instead of 'perhaps surviving' on the Quiet Isle he 'perhaps survives' somewhere close to the Eyrie?
Or he just dies and I will be misereable, which sounds more likely. --- SPOILER END ---

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@ San

If your comments right than I really missed something in the books because I didn't know we see the Hound again after his nap by the tree.

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@ tim

JK is absolutely right, which is why I wrote 'perhaps surviving' ;-) You can look it up, though, it's the so called gravedigger theory.

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@ tim

Book 4. It's a bit ambiguous though; you could call the tree his last "official" sighting. So far, at least.

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You said in your review that TYRION sent Dany the pardon Jorah earned in season 1 but it was Tywin. Love reading all these reviews so I'm not hating...just helping:)

C-f-ohara
@ Brandon Williams

Much appreciated Brandon. My fingers betray me from time to time as I think one name, but type another. Went back and fixed it, TY.

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Nice interpretation from the books and it stands on its own. :-) <3 it!