I'm both a book and TV show fan, I have read the books all to date and so am coming to the table with some foreknowledge. However the wonder of the show is not just that they are not just retelling the book instead they are putting their own stamp on events. As such watching the show has actually spoiled the book in certain plot lines. I will try my hardest not to spoil any future events but as far as I'm concerned events in this and past episodes are fair game.
The two faces of Psychological warfare
Theon Greyjoy and Sansa Stark may seem worlds apart but this episode above all others showed their main common theme. We have had what feels like years to see the breakdown of Theon by Ramsey Snow (now Bolton) and what he has achieved with Reek is amazing. Pieter Baylish on the other hand has brought Sansa in to the fold a lot quicker and with much less brutality.
They made us wait but was it worth it?
I knew this fight was coming and still I had the hope that the Red Viper would live, there is something about the way he was portrayed by Pedro Pascal that brought the book to life. The casting in the show is generally excellent, but in Pascal they found a man born to play the Prince of Dorne. The fluidity of his fighting style mixed with his controlled rage made him the embodiment of the Viper and it is a shame that he had to depart but what an ending.
In his moment of triumph Oberyn points to Tywin Lannister and virtually calls him out as the man who ordered the Mountain to kill his sister.
The problem is the mountain is not a man to be underestimated and even with a spear through the chest still manages to trip the Viper and literally smash his face in.
The finale of the scene was gruesome to say the least, the Mountains first blow smashed out loads of the Vipers teeth, he then gouged out his eyes and fianlly squashed his skull with a sickening clench of his hands.
The most powerful thing though was the big man's recital of Oberyn's taunts;
"Elia Martell, I killed her children and I raped her, then I smashed her head in like this"
The unforgiving Mother of Dragons
Daenerys Targaryen has shown she is a woman of conviction but today she was tested to a whole new degree. The revelation that Jor Moremont was a spy came as a huge shock. The betrayal in the young Queen's voice was obvious to hear and she did what we expected by banishing her former Queens Guard.
Elsewhere in Meereen there is an odd blossoming relationship between the Unsullied leader Grey Worm and Dany's translator Missandei. This gives us a comical moment when Dany and Missandei are trying to figure out if the Unsullied lose both the Tree and the Rocks. Its a nice moment and shows the growing relationship between the two women.
The Starks of the Eyrie
With Sansa already at the house of the Arryn's and suffering under an interrogation (which she passes with a deft touch) it seems she may be soon reunited with her troublesome younger sister.
Arya has had a great road show with the Hound up to this point but t seems their journey is at an end. However if you ever expect things to go smoothly in Westeros then you have not been paying attention.
I was not expecting Arya's reaction on the news of her aunts death, but the fit of hysterics makes perfect sense for a girl how has lost everything in the most brutal fashion. The question now is will how will the sisters reunion go, if there is one at all?
Knowing the way the game is played I'm pretty sure they will.
Oh and of course we need to find out when Tyrion will be put to death.
Images courtesy of BSkyB © Home Box Office