Game of Thrones. S04 E06 The Laws of Gods and Men
by Nikole Gunn
Years ago, when they first began casting for Game of Thrones, book readers worried WHO, if anyone, would be able to do justice to the character of Tyrion Lannister.
Tyrion holds a special place in many hearts and not just for slapping Joffrey. For many, Tyrion is the one shining light in the Lannister clan.
Yes, he drinks and whores with the best of them, but he doesn’t always toe the party line. He shows kindness, when the rest of the clan would be ruthless.
Who could possibly do the character justice? Peter Dinklage has proven over and over and over again that he was the right choice. And in episode 6 of season 4, Dinklage showed once and for all, that he is The Man.
If the last 20 minutes were all about Tyrion, the first half hour showed where the other major players were. Stannis and Ser Davos were visiting the Iron Bank in Braavos, where Good King Stan was knocked back for a loan.
Until, his Hand seemingly convinced the bankers to part with some cash to help win the Iron Throne. Davos points out, if Tywin were to shuffle off this mortal coil, who would be left to run the show in the Seven Kingdoms?
It’s a very valid point. The next we see of Davos, he’s cashed up and buying the services of the pirate Salladhor Saan in a Braavosi bathhouse. And in case you were wondering, the bathhouse provided the episode’s ‘boob and bum’ quota.
Moving right along, and we join Yara and her crew on a rescue mission for her brother Theon, who’s now known as Reek. (Reek, Reek – it rhymes with meek. Another for the book readers).
Unfortunately, all does not go according to plan. Reek/Theon is being kept with the dogs and appears to be suffering a touch of Stockholm syndrome – that’s if the Seven Kingdoms had a Stockholm.
He resists all attempts to rescue him and Yara is sent packing, who declares her brother is dead. For his enduring loyalty to Ramsay Snow, Reek is rewarded with a hot bath. It’s the simple things really.
Meantime, the Mother of Dragons is having problems with her babies. They’ve grown very big, very hungry and very feisty. They snack on some goats and the goatherd’s son. The goatherd presents his complaints to the Queen, who pays him.
She’s learning how to rule (as promised last week), but it’s rather tedious for the Khaleesi, who has to sit through complaint after complaint after complaint.
This will be her lot in life for a while, so let’s head back to the King’s Landing, where she’s the hot topic at a meeting of the Small Council. She’s dismissed as a minor threat, although Lord Varys point out, she has dragons and the services of Jorah Mormont and Ser Barristan.
And then it’s all about The Trial and it becomes clear that the cards are stacked against Tyrion. Everyone, friend or foe, is happy to lie to seal his fate. The crowd boos and hisses, but Tyrion is not allowed to defend himself.
Jaime can see what’s happening and begs his father to spare his brother’s life and even promises to give us his life as a member of the King’s Guard. He will settle down, marry and have kids to continue the Lannister line.
Tywin agrees and then comes the ultimate act of betrayal. Shae, the woman Tyrion truly loves, turns on him. She tells the court that HE was responsible for Joffrey’s death. Tyrion did it for the sake of his wife, Sansa.
It’s at this point that Peter Dinklage comes into his own and he truly shines bright as he ‘confesses’. But not to the murder of Joffrey, but to being a dwarf, something he’s been on trial for his whole life.
He tells the court he wishes he killed Joffrey, wishes he’d let Stannis win the Battle of Blackwater, wishes he was the monster the crowd thinks he is, wishes he’d let them all die.
And knowing his fate is sealed and there would be no justice, Tyrion demands a trial by combat to let the Gods decide. It’s powerful stuff and Dinklage is powerful in his delivery.
All hail Peter Dinklage, the First of His Name (we think)!!!!!