(Spoiler Warning) Out of all the episodes of this season, episode 5, titled Kill the Boy, while being the least dramatic thus far, was perhaps the most reflective. It also contained some outstanding photography, like when Stannis' army marches into the distance from Castle Black heading for Winterfell. Or the final scenes where Tyrion and Mormont sail through Valyria, reciting The Doom of Valyria, as Dany's only free dragon, Drogon, gracefully flies overhead. One assumes this is the inspiration for the season 5 artwork.
After the attack from the Son's of the Harpy left Barristan the Bold dead, and Grey Worm seriously injured (watch here), Dany's forced to make decisions that will hopefully ensure a peaceful coexistence with the Meereenese. Although Daenerys' arc has tended to be among the least interesting since early on in season 2, (or at least a close runner-up to Bran Stark's), even though she has three huge dragons, I get the feeling things are about to change. She's always tried to be a dutiful queen, ruling over Meereen with a feather touch. But with the death of her closest adviser, Dany's decided to open the fighting pits and marry Hizdahr zo Loraq. However, she certainly kicked some ass before deciding to take that path, by feeding one of the nobles to her two chained-up dragons. It's about time Mother had some fun with her children.
Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, Sophie Turner, Emilia Clarke, Maisie Williams, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau
10 May 2015
Ed's Grade: A
This week's episodic title, Kill the Boy, comes from the advice given to Lord Commander Jon Snow by Maester Aemon. Jon has a plan that he knows will bitterly divide half the Night's Watch and have them hating him. "Half the men hate you already, Lord Commander. Do it!" exclaims the wise old maester, without even knowing what the plan is. "Kill the boy Jon Snow. Winter is almost upon us." Armed with this powerful little nugget of wisdom, Jon appears to visibly grow in stature, allowing him to face down his men with the plan. He wants to persuade the Wildlings to come over the wall, where the men fit enough to fight can help hold the Wall alongside the Night's Watch against the advancing White Walkers. Needless to say, this news is about as welcome as a fart in a spacesuit to the men under Jon's command.
Without waiting to see if Jon can successfully raise a Wildling army, King Stannis sets off for Winterfell. Melisandre, his queen and the princess also accompany him as he rides North. However, Roose and Ramsey Bolton are about to prepare for their arrival. Sansa is a threat to Ramsey's current squeeze, the very jealous Miranda. (Watch the video below) Miranda leads Sansa to the dog kennels where Theon "Reek" Greyjoy is sleeping. Every emotion imaginable crosses Sansa's face, with Theon not that far behind. Of course, when Ramsey learns of this, he does the unexpected. He flaunts his power over Theon at the dinner table, then rubs in all the cruelty committed by Theon to Sansa's face. But she actually gets the last laugh. When Roose tells Ramsey that he's about to have a baby brother, Sansa can see that Ramsey hates the idea, so she delights in offering the happy couple her congratulations. You have to wonder if Roose is only using Ramsey until he can properly secure the North. It's hard to tell with those two headcases.
Brienne and Pod are waiting for their chance to rescue Sansa if they can. But Brienne meets an old man who's still loyal to the remnants of House Stark, and gets word to Sansa that she's not alone. At least we now know that help is at hand should Sansa need it. And the fact that she's under the same roof as Ramsey the bastard Bolton, I would say her need of rescue is a foregone conclusion. If it ever comes to it, will Theon play a part in helping her, or will he cave-in to Ramsey like he did with his sister?
It was nice seeing Grey Worm and Missandei finally getting it on. Well, they kissed at least. As I mentioned at the beginning of the article, Tyrion and Mormont are heading through Valyria when they see Drogon. But just as this happens, the Stone-Men attack, almost drowning Tyrion and leaving Mormont assured a slow, agonizing death. While fighting off the Stone-Men, Mormont is touched, which means he too will become one. Will he last to the end of this season? Who knows. We do know that at one point he fights in the pits, thanks to the season 5 trailer.
I liked this episode as much as any of the mid-season episodes that we've grown accustomed to. What it lacked in certain areas, it more than made up for in other ways. It advanced the story quite a bit, and some would argue, especially the book readers, it advanced the story a bit too much and too quickly. Maybe. All I know is that this show hasn't put a foot wrong yet.