Garden Of Bones

Another week in Game of Thrones, and in days to come, we might look back on this fourth episode as when the second season really got going. Plots start coming together, and we finally get a sense of everything being connected, rather than flashing from location to location.

Or maybe it’ll be place to place at random again next week, it’s hard to tell. Anyway, let’s get into some notes.

The talking point for many, early in the episode, was a scene in which Joffrey demonstrated how little he’d been paying attention in sex education classes. Not that the prospect of the little turd mid-coitus would appeal even if he just did it normally, but still.

That scene did a nice job of showing how screwed up the kid is, but was slightly undermined by no-one seeming to notice it had happened. Surely Tyrion would have commented on it in later scenes, unless he didn’t yet know and that’s coming next week?

Elsewhere, the worlds of the Stark army and Baratheon brothers finally collide. It was good to see Robb again, although he still needs some characterisation beyond “stalwart leader”, and if I understood the timescale correctly, the two Baratheon siblings will be having a heavily armed playfight next week? We’ll be halfway through the season by then, so maybe it is time to eliminate one of the aspiring Kings. Give us a sense of progress.

Oh, and for once I’m going to pay more than lip service to the Daenerys sections, but mostly to say I’m not sure they worked. Did they have to give the Quarthians a look and tone akin to an old sci-fi show? It seemed more far out than Game of Thrones normally goes, but I guess not every location can be a grimy castle.

Then again, after the Priestess gave birth to that shadow monster, maybe we’re taking leave of realism now? I’m hoping the bigger season 2 budget won’t leave us too drowning in CGI, I’ve enjoyed the focus on intrigue and incest. (And, yup, there’s more of that this week too.)

Oh, and I did like the twist in the Arya storyline, especially how the senior Lannister wasn’t fooled by her disguise. It was going to make people look stupid if it kept going indefinitely. And that rat thing was... um, horrible.

Another good Game of Thrones week, then. I’m not as wildly enthusiastic as I have been, because we are seeing the addition of some large fantasy elements which will require careful balancing, but this is pre-emptive worry for the most part. I’m certainly excited for the Baratheon Cup Final next week.

Game Of Thrones airs on Mondays at 9PM on Sky Atlantic. More details on their official site.

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