Game of Thrones 3.08 ‘Second Sons’ - Review

Subtle cruelty has a running theme throughout this week’s Game of Thrones episode as our characters use dubious, secretive methods in their power plays. Most notably, sellsword Daario Naharis sneaks into Daenerys’ bathroom to pledge his allegiance to her, having held a knife to her handmaiden’s throat and chopped the heads off his two partners. This new allegiance probably won’t be easy-going then; especially as the sellsword is ready to murder his co-workers so quickly at the drop of a hat, or in this case, a dragon.

Meanwhile at Dragonstone, silver-tongued Melisandre puts some smooth moves onto a happily surprised Gendry, seducing him so she can chain him to a bed. Following this, she harnesses the power of his blood by leeching him all over, including places he would much rather not have blood-sucking creepy-crawlies. Does her leech magic actually help Stannis’ cause? From what we’ve seen so far, all it has managed to do is edge Stannis further towards obsessive insanity in his following of Melisandre and fasten her manipulative grip on him, both literally and metaphorically. We’re interested to see whether this magic actually pays off at some point and Stannis gets to win a battle. And is his wife (the actual one, not the witch) still going crazy in the disturbing tower with the creepily pickled dead babies?

Talking of babies, Tywin Lannister’s demand of them from Tyrion and Sansa looks like it’ll take a while to come to fruition as the begrudged and mismatched Stark/Lannister wedding takes place. We’re reminded of Sansa’s vulnerability as she confesses she’s only fourteen to a drunk Tyrion, who subsequently refuses to share her bed until she wants him to, which Sansa implies will never happen. Poor Tyrion. It’s not looking great for Sansa either though, as she is threatened by Joffrey with a bedtime visit from the King himself, who claims he might on a whim try to impregnate her. So once again, it seems there’s further horrific times ahead for young Sansa, but aren’t we starting to get a little bored of watching her suffer? We were more gripped by Margaery and Cersei’s tense discussion; despite being forced to marry Loras, Cersei is doing her utmost to maintain her Queen Bitch status in King’s Landing. But will it remain after her wedding?

Finally, Sam demonstrates his bravery in protecting Gilly and the baby against a white walker by stabbing it with some dragon glass which seems to do the trick in killing it. We’re very impressed by this, until he leaves the dragon glass behind whilst running away, despite not being chased by any other white walkers. Why leave behind the one weapon that can save you? It may be a detail missed by producers or key to a future storyline, nevertheless it left the episode ending with an infuriatingly bitter taste. A shame for a show which usually provides believably realistic behaviour from its characters.



out of 10

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