Game of Thrones. S04 E02 The Lion and the Rose
by Nikole Gunn
That noise you heard last night was the internet exploding. A collective cheer went up, as another player in the Game of Thrones was removed. But there’ll be very few tears shed for this one.
This latest WTF moment again revolved around a wedding. They’re not cause for much celebration in Westeros: they tend to be quickly followed by a funeral.
Last season it was The Red Wedding. This season, it’s the Purple Wedding. Although the episode title “The Lion and The Rose” gave no indication that we would be seeing the demise of Joffrey, probably one of the most wished for TV deaths.
It should come as NO surprise that it was George RR Martin who delivered the killer blow – he gets to write one episode per season. But he made us wait to see Joffrey draw his last breath.
Instead, the episode opens with a hunt. A twisted and perverted hunt with a young woman the prey. The hunt master is none other than Ramsay Snow: the Bastard of Bolton.
He has Theon in tow, but he now answers to Reek (Reek, Reek it rhymes with leek: one for the book readers). And as Reek watches on, the young woman is mauled to death. Isn’t Ramsay a charmer?
But it seems Ramsay may have gone too far. His father Roose Bolton isn’t happy that Theon has been turned into a plaything. And it’s at this point that we see Theon’s transformation is complete.
He gives Ramsay a close shave and is further tormented with the news that Robb Stark is dead. Yet, he chooses not to slit Ramsay’s throat. The blade was there, but he stays his hand. He has become Reek and Theon Greyjoy is no more. (Oh Alfie Allen, you play pathetic wonderfully)
While we briefly drop in on Brand, Hodder and the Reeds and then to Dragonstone to catch up with Stannis and Melisandre, the action is mostly focussed on King’s Landing and preparations for Joffrey and Margaery’s wedding. In fact, the back half of the episode is set in the capital.
Played beautifully by Jack Gleason, Joffrey is Seven Kingdom’s answer to Caligula. And as King, Tyrion is no longer able to slap him as he would a naughty child. Instead, Joffrey takes great pleasure in publically humiliating his uncle (and Sansa) at the wedding feast.
Dwarves gallivanting around in a parody of the War of the Five Kings, wine tipped over Tyrion’s head and a demand that he act as a cup bearer. It seems Joffrey is itching for an excuse to kill The Imp should he refuse any of these ‘honours’.
As the tormenting continues, Joffrey takes a bite of pie and a drink of wine and chokes to death in a violent manner, with his mother and uncle-father unable to save him.
And with his dying breath, Joffrey points a finger of accusation at Tyrion. Another King-Slayer in the family? Cersei certainly thinks so and Tyrion is hauled off to the dungeons.
But did Tyrion poison the wine? Or was it the Martells? Or even Littlefinger looking to rescue Sansa? And where has Sir Dontos the fool taken Sansa?
The King is dead, long live the King? But who’s now left in this Game of Thrones?
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