GAME OF THRONES Re-Watch: “Lord Snow” and “Cripples, Bastards and Broken Things”

War is coming… and we can’t wait! Which is precisely why, in anticipation of GAME OF THRONES long-awaited return this Sunday April 1st on HBO (and HBO Canada), your very own TV Addict recently decided to brush up on the our George R.R. Martin mythology by spending a recent Saturday entrenched on our very own iron throne (Read: Couch). What follows, is our fun and pithy episode guide, with format inspiration courtesy of our bible, Entertainment Weekly. See for yourself, after the jump.

FIRST AIRED: 5/1/11 WRITERS: David Benioff and D.B. Weiss DIRECTOR: Brian Kirk SYNOPSIS: Upon his arrival to King’s Landing, newly appointed hand of the King Ned Stark very quickly discovers that the Seven Kingdoms are being managed about as efficiently as the US government, while daughters Arya and Sansa further acclimate themselves the not-so-hospitable world within King’s Landing (Read: Prince Joffrey, still a jack-ass). But, on a more positive note, the “Dothraki Way” seems to have paid off for Khal Drogo in the sense that Daenerys is expecting her first child. INTRODUCED: The curious collection of misanthropes and ne’er-do-wells who make up the King’s Council including his younger brother Renly Baratheon, treasurer Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish, and the mysterious Varys. LESSON LEARNED: 1) Courtesy of Arya’s “dance” lessons, “When it comes to swords, it never hurts to stick em with the pointy end.” 2) Even more pearls of wisdom from Tyrion Lannister, “If you’re going to be a cripple it’s better to be a rich cripple,” CRITIQUE: Much to our surprise, the show’s forward momentum pretty much comes to a screeching halt with an hour that does little more than set the table for much of the action that is about to unfold in subsequent episodes. Also not helping matters, constant references to the former “Mad King” Targaryen, yet another name in a long list of characters we’re supposed to keep track of amongst the seemingly ever-expanding Martin mythology. GRADE: C+

FIRST AIRED: 5/8/11 WRITERS: Bryan Cogman DIRECTOR: Brian Kirk SYNOPSIS: As newly-minuted hand to the King Ned Stark continues to look into the mysterious circumstances surrounding his predecessor’s death, wife Lady Catelyn Stark continues to live up to the old adage that proclaims behind every man is a powerful woman by not only rallying her husband supporters, but capturing Tyrion Lannister as well. Meanwhile, across the Narrow Sea, brother Viserys continues to clash with sister Daenerys over his increased marginalization amongst the Dothraki horde.INTRODUCED: Sam, the Knight Watchman equivalent of Jonah Hill. HISTORIC MOMENT: The usually self-centered Tyrion Lannister shows a glimmer of kindness when he provides Winterfell with the means in which to give Bran (who you may remember was paralyzed from the waste down after being pushed off the top of the tower by Jaime Lannister) the ability to ride a horse LESSON LEARNED: Daenerys is really getting a hang for this Khaleesi thing, telling brother Viserys, “The next time you raise a hand to me is the last time you will have hands.” CRITIQUE: Despite a little too much time spent at the Wall (With apologies to what we’re sure are legions of Jon Snow fans, it remains the least interesting aspect of the series thus far), “Cripples, Bastards and Broken Things,” continues to surprise. In the sense that just when we were all but convinced that the Lannister offspring were pure and unadulterated evil, the writers managed to pull off a handful of scenes in which we find ourselves wondering whose side we will ultimately end up on. Also of note, the show’s continued penchant for riveting closing scenes that do nothing less than demand audiences come back next week to find out what happens next. GRADE: B

Missed This Week’s GAME OF THRONES Re-Watch? Catch up on the entire blow-by-blow at the following links:
• Episodes 9 and 10: “Baelor” and “Fire and Blood”
• Episodes 7 and 8: “You Win Or You Die” and “The Pointy End”
• Episodes 5 and 6: “The Wolf and the Lion” and “A Golden Crown”
• Episodes 3 and 4: “Lord Snow” and “Cripples, Bastards and Broken Things”
• Episodes 1 and 2: “Winter is Coming” and “The Kingsroad”

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