After last weeks fairly placid episode, which just established the new season, we knew that the second episode would pack a punch and it didn’t disappoint. With the absence of Danearys in this weeks episode, the story lines were concentrated on the Kingdoms of Westeros culminating in a nerve-wracking finale at Castle Black…but we’ll get to that.
Time Travelling Bran
Bran’s back! Having not seen him at all in the last season, its lovely to see him again, all grown up and in the company of the three eyed raven. Last time we saw him, he was tailoring his ability to go into the minds of other people and see the world through their eyes, an ability which is important for him as he is physically impaired. It means he can actually offer something to the world in spite of that. This time we see he has enhanced that ability to travel in time. He goes back to Winterfell when Ned Stark was a young boy and he learns that Hodor is actually called Willis. Perhaps Bran’s ability to travel through time will help him to discover the truth about Jon Snows heritage? That he and Khaleessi are brother and sister? Maybe? Okay okay, I’m jumping the gun.
The Wrath of Ramsey
After learning that his mother has just given birth to a baby boy, Ramsey fears that the throne could be taken away from him. Sansa has done a runner with Theon so Ramsey’s opportunity to produce an heir has been scuppered, although there is every possibility that Sansa is pregnant after Ramsey stole her virginity from her on their wedding night. If that little reminder wasn’t enough to recall Ramsey’s evil nature then this episode will do that for you. Ramsey is insane and driven crazy by power, he is an amazing villain, more so than Joffrey was, because Ramsey isn’t just an asshole with too much power, he’s an intelligent asshole with a rather big dollop of crazy on the side. What kind of man would stab his own father and then feed his new born baby brother and mother to the dogs? Ramsey would. The new Lord Bolton.
Bye Bye Balon
Not only did Roose Bolton die in this episode, but Balon Greyjoy has also snuffed it at the hands of his brother Euron Greyjoy who arrived and pushed his brother from a large rope bridge into freezing cold, wild waters. He was alluded to in the first season when Tyrion told Theon that Theon’s uncles led the Raid on Lannisport. Euron is not to be messed with at all and his presence at Pyke is clearly fueled by a desire for power. It’s worrying that this is what Theon is returning home to.
The Girl Has No Name
The girl formally known as Arya is still bewildered, broken, blind and being beaten up another girl who she can’t see. Luckily for her, Jaqen has decided that she isn’t a beggar anymore and leads her away from her sad little bowl. I’m sure her training is far from over but if this episode has shown us anything, its that story lines are progressing rapidly.
Davvos, in an act of pure desperation asks Melisandre if she knows of any magic that can resurrect the dead. Melisandre, who has lost all faith in herself and the Lord of Light, appears withdrawn and melancholy. She informs Davvos that she has met a man who claimed to have come back from the dead but she doesn’t have that kind of power. Davvos asks her try. She goes to Jon Snows body, lying coldly on the slab and she cleans away his blood so we can see each and every one of those traitorous stab wounds. After cleaning his body and washing his hair, she chants over his body but nothing happens. Defeated she leaves and Davvos follows. In the final moments of the episode, when everyone has left the room, Jon Snow awakens.
A lot happened in this episode and it is all very meaningful. The battle for the North is now even more exciting as Jon Snow returns from the dead and with the Wildlings and the giants on his side, can reap vengeance on those who betrayed him. No longer tied to The Watch, he is free to do what he pleases and I dread to think how he will react when his little sister tells him of what Ramsey Bolton has done to her. It’s easy to critique the return of Jon Snow, we all had a feeling that he would be back from the dead but there was always doubt that in true Game of Thrones style, he could be gone forever. Melisandre was always the answer to his return and she was the only one who could resurrect him. They could have dragged this on for three or four more episodes but the fact it has been done now means that Jon Snow is integral to the rest of the season. His resurrection is just the beginning.
The only thing that I am not particularly interested in right now is the goings on at Kings Landing. I don’t really know where that is going, if anything I think the small snippets we are being given so far are just reminding us that The Mountain is back and is massive and will kill anyone who insults, disrespects, or hurts Cersei. A force to be reckoned with and I am very exciting to see him in action.
This episode saw two important Lords murdered by their families, dragons set free, and a man coming back from the dead. The game is on!
Can’t wait until next week? Here is a teaser for episode 3!