Theon wakes up to find Osha missing from his bed and further discovers she, Bran, Rickon, and Hodor have escaped Winterfell. After one of his men speaks somewhat disrespectfully to him, Theon stomps him into the ground. He sends out a hunting party after the fleeing Starks and their saviors, Osha and Hodor. Theon has descended into depraved madness in this installment. In his conversation with Maester Luwin, he talks about how he will hurt Bran and Rickon for fleeing, even though they are just boys, and hints he may even kill them.

‘Come on, Maester. Don’t look so grim, it’s all just a game.’

Osha worries that they don’t have enough food and also that they cannot outrun any hunting party Theon will potentially send out. They come upon a farm used by Winterfell to shelter orphans, but Bran thinks it will be too dangerous for them to get shelter there because Theon would torture the farmers to get information out of them.

Game of Thrones: The Complete First Season [Blu-ray]

Jon Snow and Ygrid awake on a frosty plane. It’s hard to tell whether it’s morning or evening beyond the Wall because the snowy vistas look similar in both morning and evening shots. Tensions rise between the two following Ygrid’s mocking the Night’s Watch’s vows. Part sexual tension, part political dispute, the ensuing shouting match in the middle of nowhere is a great exposition of the cultural differences between the wildlings and those who live below the Wall.

Tywin Lannister is having men executed en masse back at Harrenhal in his attempt to find Jaqen H’ghar. ‘Dragonsbane’ is what Jaqen used to kill Amory Lorch, and Tywin Lannister erroneously believes the assassin’s target was him.

He gives his meal to Arya because he doesn’t like mutton. It’s heartwarming, in a strange way, to watch him dote on Arya in total ignorance of who she is.

‘You think I’d be in my position if I had lost a war?’

Aegon Targaryen and his sisters, along with their dragons, burned the lords of Harrenhal alive inside the castle. That explains its melted, derelict appearance. Tywin isn’t a daft man and he figures out that Arya is of noble birth.

‘Killing is the sweetest thing that there is.’

Daenerys is still upset about the theft of her dragons and Xaro is offering his aid to find her dragons but she’s being slightly irrational in her dismissal of him.

Her siren song having no effect, Jon Snow refuses Ygrid’s advances and continues marching on into the snowy horizon with his fiery hot wildling girl in tow. ‘You know nothing, Jon Snow,’ is never more apt a saying than it is here. Though she likely would slit his throat, you can’t help but admire her beauty, spirit and independent attitude. It becomes a shame that he cannot get with her for political and security reasons.

Game of Thrones: The Complete First Season [Blu-ray]
Theon’s right hand man, his co-conspirator in the plot to make him ‘Prince Theon of Winterfell,’ notices Theon’s increasingly erratic behavior. Not only is Theon blood thirsty but he’s completely irrational. It is hard to imagine what manner of horror he will bring upon the landscape of the North before he is finally stopped.

Theon will likely slaughter the orphans and their caretakers, ratcheting up the need for his comeuppance. One character’s actions, usually leading to death and destruction, feeds others’ needs for the same and even gets the audience into the game. That said, it will be intriguing to see what this torture drama has in store for the would-be ‘Prince of Winterfell.’

‘And he spread me legs. And ruined. The shame of it. Now I can never marry a perfumed lord. Oh, what will me savage father say.’

After distracting him, Ygrid slips free of her bindings and leads Jon Snow into a trap in which he is surrounded by wildlings.  Back at King’s Landing, Sansa has begun menstruating and Cersei lets her know about Joffrey’s painful and long birth – a foretelling of his demented nature? One can only speculate. We can all agree that Joffrey is one of those people who probably shouldn’t have children.

‘The more people you love, the weaker you are. You’ll do things for them that you know you shouldn’t do. You’ll act the fool to make them happy, to keep them safe.’

The envoy sharing the cage with Jaime is killed following a long, painful interlude detailing how the two are related and how much the envoy admires Jaime. Who kills the envoy? Jaime, to lure the guard into the cell so that he, too, can be choked to death with Jaime’s shackles. Jaime’s plot to escape, seemingly irrational on-the-surface, does not bode well for Robb’s bargaining prospects with the Lannisters.

Game of Thrones: The Complete First Season [Blu-ray]
Jorah meets with the masked lady in Qarth to find Daenerys’ dragons. She exposes that Jorah has betrayed Daenerys in some way and that he loves her. Jorah finds out where the dragons are. Xaro overthrows the Council of Qarth and makes himself the king of Qarth, aligning himself with the magicians from the House of the Undying.

Using the same trick he used in an earlier episode in which he could make himself appear in more than one place, the warlock projects dopplegangers of himself behind each member of the council and slits their throats simultaneously, clearing the way for Xaro to be king of Qarth.

Tyrion and Cersei have a discussion about how uncontrollable Joffrey is and how cruel he is.

‘Robert was a drunken fool but he didn’t enjoy cruelty. … Sometimes I wonder if this is the price we pay, for our sins.’

It’s interesting to see Cersei express her doubts about Joffrey as king and, not only that, also hear her comment on how unfit he is to rule.

At Winterfell, Theon has decided to display the charred corpses of two of the orphans he took from the orphanage as stand-ins for Bran and Rickon Stark because we know this show couldn’t eliminate two Starks simultaneously.

 

All photos courtesy of HBO.com.