Tuesday, May 3, 2011

TV: Game of Thrones - Lord Snow

Ned arrives at King's Landing and begins his new duty as the Hand of the King as tensions continue to rise and the past begins to reveal itself.

We're three episodes in and Ned has only just reached King's Landing. The mystery surrounding Bran's attempted murder is being uncovered, but in a way where we can expect a twist or two to rear it's head in the face of our knowing of those behind the attack against the Starks. This week we were given a small bit of history, a whole lot of love for the Starks and a whole lot of hate for the Lannisters.

I must say Sean Bean is doing a great job showing his struggle to control and help his family. Ned has it tough dealing with all the issues surrounding his family as well as the kingdom. He's a husband, a father as well as a serviceman of the kingdom, and at this point his family is divided. Catelyn is busy uncovering the mystery surrounding the attempted murder of Bran, Ned is also dealing with two daughters; Sansa is at an age where parental control becomes an issue and Arya is at an age where parental control and guidance is something that will help them find themselves. Sansa took a backseat this week, with Arya receiving the guidance and support she needs to do what she loves; swordfighting. We were shown this in the closing scene as she practiced with her new trainer Syrio. She's a girl that's growing and she's played greatly by Maisie Williams.

But I can't quite place my finger on the Lannister family, Tyrion seems to be the only intelligent one of the bunch, and this week it was revealed that the dagger that attempted to kill Bran last week was in fact the stolen property of Catelyn's old flame, Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish (played by Aiden Gillen.) The person who stole it? Tyrion. So whether that is a sign that the most intelligent man of the bunch has a larger hand in the previous weeks proceedings remains to be seen.

What I feel will become a more official weekly thing, is the inability for the rest of the Lannister family to show any signs of behaviour that we, as the audience, can empathise with. Two standout scenes, Cersei helping Joffery recover from his recent attack, and Cersei's worry and Jaime's careless attitude over whether Bran had revealed what he had saw.

I'll start with the mother to son moment in which we were shown Cersei's caring side. Instead of a scene that could have developed slight empathy toward her character, we were shown that she is always thinking in a strategic sense as she berated Joffery's silly thoughts as future king. She seems to be more ruthless than ever and it's great to see now, but can and will become tiresome if her character doesn't see change by season's end. I think what amplifies this quality about her is when an issue presents itself as one against her, such as her affair with her brother, she crumbles. Which leads to her scene with Jaime where she begins to breakdown over Bran's potential memory of their steamy fling in the tower. Her attitude toward issues is rather black and white. She cares for her sake more so than others; even her son. I can understand her helping Joffery better grasp his rise to the throne, but she's not going about it in a "motherly" way.

The problem the show seems to have week to week is it's reliance on exposition. This week also had a lot of talking and not a lot of doing, we saw Snow show his teeth in training at the Watch, Ned introduced to the other Lords of the realm and the problems the kingdom is having with it's money. Another solid episode this week, but understand this; whilst we are still very early in the season, it doesn't mean things can't start moving forward.

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