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TV Review: Game Of Thrones 5.5 “Kill The Boy”
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Game Of Thrones 5.5 Kit Harington as Jon Snow

Game Of Thrones
Episode 5.4 “Sons of the Harpy”
Directed by Jeremy Podeswa
Written by Bryan Cogman
Starring Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklage, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Aidan Gillen, Kit Harington, Natalie Dormer, Sophie Turner, Dean-Charles Chapman, Jonathan Pryce
Air date: Sunday, May 19, 2015, 9pm

Spoilers ahead for Season 5 of Game Of Thrones…

Last week’s Game Of Thrones, Episode 5.4 “Sons Of The Harpy”, mostly centered on Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey) and the consequences of all her manipulations. The dowager queen made sure to shrink the small council and even put her young son Tommen, the new King, in harm’s way by sending him to see the High Sparrow, whose religious zealot followers Cersei armed as the Faith Militant to rid the city of its sinners. Also, thanks in part to Cersei, the people of Dorne — namely, the family of the slain Red Viper Prince Oberyn — are ready to exact revenge by way of Cersei’s daughter Myrcella, who’s currently residing in the country betrothed to Prince Trystane. Hopefully, Jaime Lannister, who recently arrived in secret to Dorne (again, because of Cersei) can save his niece (ahem, daughter) before it’s too late. Up at the Wall, the new Lord Commander Jon Snow makes his decision to keep his position as head of the Night’s Watch, but finds he has some harder decisions to make. But, the name of Episode 5.4 refers to the masked terrorist group who opposes Queen Daenerys Targaryen’s (Emilia Clarke) rule in Meereen. They’ll killed to make their point, and this time around, they ambushed two people close to Dany — Grey Worm, the leader of her army of Unsullied warriors, and Ser Barristan Selmy (Ian McElhinney), the former member of the Kingsguard who came to become her trusted advisor. Will they survive the attack?

But Episode 5.5 “Kill The Boy” refers to Jon Snow killing his inner child to let the man inside him be born so he can become the leader he’s meant to be. But his leadership of the Night’s Watch won’t come with much joy, as Master Aemon explains. As we know from Season 1, Winter Is Coming, and by that it means that the White Walkers, the undead, are coming with it. It seems like some people don’t realize just what this means, but Jon Snow does. He doesn’t have enough men to defend the realm at the Wall when those White Walkers do show up. That means he not only has to call upon the lords of Westeros — some of whom slaughtered his own family! — for help to send men, but also make peace with the hordes of Wildlings. But, teaming up with the Wildlings is not something that the men of the Night’s Watch are keen on doing. They’ve been enemies for far too long. It’s interesting how every time the Wildlings are brought up, we hear about how unruly they are and how they’d rather die than follow a leader, yet we saw them all come together to follow Mance Ryder. We saw Jon Snow be able to get through to some of them, and then we know that some of them are just plain old folk — like Gilly — and not all are warmongers. Obviously, the smart choice is for the living to join together in peace against the undead, right? Once again, it’s up to Jon Snow to talk some sense into people, specifically 100,000 Wildlings, even though his own 100 men won’t side with him. Good luck, Jon Snow! If anyone can do it, you can. At least “King” Stannis knows the drill, hence why he told Sam to “keep reading” to try to figure out how to defeat the White Walkers.

While Jon is off to chat with the Wildlings, Stannis and his army are marching south to take back Winterfell from the Boltons and where Sansa Stark has been left alone, betrothed to Ramsey Bolton, Lord Roose Bolton’s recently legitimized son. Of all the characters on Game Of Thrones, Ramsey is perhaps the most frightening. He’s a sadist, he’s evil, and every time we think his father will finally see that he needs to go, we realize that while he’s sometimes annoyed with Ramsey, Roose is actually proud of his son. Roose tells a story about Ramsey’s mother, and we see just how cruel the Lord is. Not surprisingly, Ramsey doesn’t flinch at this horrible tale. He’s more concerned that his stepmother is now pregnant, which he fears jeopardizes his position as Roose’s heir. The look on Sansa’s face when Ramsey finds out about the pregnancy was great to see. Less great was her reunion with Theon Greyjoy, who’s currently living in the kennels with the dogs at Winterfell, spending his days serving his master Ramsey, who calls him “Reek.” But even creepier was Sansa’s introduction to Myranda, Ramsey’s crazy jealous and apparently equally psychotic mistress. Watch your back, Sansa! I’d love it if at some point Sansa gets to punch Myranda’s lights out.

Speaking of getting their lights punched out, that’s just what happened last episode to Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) by his kidnapper Ser Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen), who’s taking the imp to his estranged queen Dany back in Meereen. Now, we see the dwarf awaken, still with his hands bound, and boy could he use some wine. How long have they been in that little boat that goes as slow as possible? That’s a long trip to make, yet they seem to be making the journey unrealistically quickly. Here, Jorah decides to take them by sea, cutting through the ruined city of old Valyria, the ancestral home of the Targaryens that is now considered haunted. As they approach, Drogon — the only one of Dany’s dragons that is still on the loose — is flying overhead. If that wasn’t eye-opening enough, there goes something dropping into the water. Wait, it’s a man. No, no, it’s a Stone Man!!!!! And there’s more! Oh, maybe this wasn’t the best route. There’s a reason this area of the world isn’t crowded. They send those inflicted with greyscale there and, as we learn, the Doom still rules here.

Lastly, as usual, it’s back to Daenerys Targaryen, who just keeps on making mistakes. She wants to make sure the people of Meereen are free, yet her brand of justice is harsh. This time, her drastic measures include having the heads of all the prominent Meereen families rounded up and brought down to the catacombs where two of her dragons are chained. She’s not above using her “children” to scare an enemy or roast them alive for that matter. But, by the end of the episode, Dany has abandoned her scare tactics in favor of a diplomatic union. Does this mean she’s going to marry a man everywhere she conquers?

Next week’s episode, 5.6 “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken,” will bring back Arya Stark, who’s awaiting her training as a Faceless Man to begin at the House Of Black and White in Braavos. There will also be a return to Dorne, where Jaime needs to make a move; the young, innocent Myrcella and her betrothed make plans; and the Sand Snakes attack. Also, Jorah and Tyrion, who are presumably still walking to their next destination, run into slavers.


Game of Thrones Season 5: Inside Episode 5 (HBO)

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