‘Game of Thrones’ recap: Review of Season 4 Episode 8’s ‘The Mountain and the Viper’
In last week’s episode of Game of Thrones we ended with Little Finger finally putting the Moon Door to good use, and The Viper volunteering as Tyrion’s champion. So, what happened in this Season 4 Episode 8’s ‘The Mountain and the Viper’? Let’s find out who the big winners and losers were in this week’s episode of Game of Thrones.
It took just the length of an awkward conversation this week between a drunk whore & Gilly until we found ourselves bathing in blood once again. The tension between Gilly & the 2-bit whoooores that house her is palpable, but luckily for Gilly their Mole Town brothel is raided a la Slayer’s ‘Raining Blood’ and she no longer has to deal with her prostitute roommates.
We’re treated to a quick glimpse of Ygritte’s diminishing sense of compassion, as we’ve seen her spearing people left and right for weeks now, but it’s nice to know she’s still somewhat human, or not…I guess dat Jon Snow d*ck game really did a number on her…
The losers here of course are the Night’s Watch. In addition to have a few of their brothers killed in the raid, they’ve lost their favorite brothel and they have an impending war on their hands in which they’ll be drastically outnumbered. +25 XPs to Gilly for surviving, +50 XPs to the Wildlings for their element of surprise… -75 XPs from the Night’s Watch for once again not succeeding at the simplest tasks…such as living.
In my humble opinion, this showdown between Jon Snow and 101 of his brother’s in black is where the season is expected to climax…but we’ll just have to wait and find out.
WINNER: Grey Worm
What would an episode be without some gratuitous naked scenes? In this week’s episode Grey Worm, the eunuch commander of The Unsullied, saw him some tig ‘ol bitties.
Following this wonderful display of the unclothed human body, we’re then forced to sit through a mind-numbingly stupid discussion of the ins and outs of castration, between Daenerys & Missandei (who we just saw naked)…What do they chop? What do they leave? Who feels what?
These two scenes are mostly filler content between more crucial plot lines to the season, but we clearly can’t complain any time we’re served up unsolicited bewbs.
LOSERS: The Ironborn
Next we’re treated to the saga of Reek vs. Theon. Reek has clearly taken such hold of Theon’s inner psyche that he’ll never again be a real man, but he’s forced to pretend to be his former Prince self for the sake of getting the Ironborn to relinquish Moat Cailin.
Strategically Roose Bolton needs Moat Cailin to secure the North, and Ramsay Snow needs Moat Cailin in order to secure his name as a Bolton, and not just another bastard of the North.
So Theon walks up in this dingy castle, convinces his badass countrymen to lay down their arms and surrender for a safe passage back home to the Iron Isles…Only it’s Ramsay we’re dealing with here, which means people are going to lose their skin…as Ramsay is fixated on their house crest of the ‘flayed man’ and keeps flaying as his preferred method of torture…
At times we’ve been able to pity the poor Theon/Reek, whatever you want to call him. As he never fully intended to burn Winterfell to the ground and overthrow the Starks entirely, but he’s a complete f*cking jackass who is incapable of executing even the simplest of tasks…and his tasks seem to always get someone killed.
The BIGGEST winners tonight should be the special effects artists, because throughout this episode their talents seemed to be showcased in a way we haven’t seen in quite such horrifyingly impressive detail until now.
WINNER: Little Finger
The climax of last week’s episode was no doubt when Little Finger threw his new wife Lysa out the Moon Door…the fall out from this is quite the clusterf*ck indeed.
First, Lord Petyr Baelish has a reputation as being a money hungry class jumper…so people justifiably presume the worst of him. Next, he’s killed his new wife, who was essentially Lord of the Vale, one of the great kingdoms of Westeros, making himself Lord of the Vale before any of his bannermen even had the opportunity to bless his short lived marriage.
So this plot line with as many layers as an onion opens up to an inquisition by the other lesser Lords of the Vale, seeking to understand the truth of what happened. Things could SO F*CKING EASILY work out perfectly for Sansa here and GO TERRIBLY SOUTH for Little Finger if people just told the the actual truth. Instead, Sansa is put on the stand and questioned without any coaching from Petyr, and she takes the opportunity to deliver her pièce de résistance as a character. For once she doesn’t shrivel up as the woebegone little Lady we know her to be, and actually uses her emotions, and the previous years of torture in King’s Landing to her advantage. She reveals her true identity as Sansa Stark, and uses her recent tortured history in order to gain credence in the eyes of her accusers. All of whom are elderly, and will basically believe any story that is fed to them by a crying child.
So congrats to Sansa, for using her most annoying character attributes to PERFECTLY WEAVE THE WEB OF A MASTERFUL LIE in which she portrays Lord Petyr as her one and only savior, and the most noble man in the history of nobility. My concern here is that she genuinely believes the LittleFinger b.s. in earnest, and doesn’t realize she’s aligned herself with the most ruthlessly devious man in all of the kingdoms of Westeros. But she played her hand and she played it well. She used slight of hand to take all attention off of the dead Lady Lysa to shed light on her being saved by Little Finger. How can Petyr be a bad man if all he was doing was rescuing Sansa Stark from the dreaded Lannisters?!?!?
Her story seemed to check out, and now she’s living in world where Lord Baelish is a good man in the eyes of the other lords of the Vale…who depending on how things play out for the little bird…she may need one day to protect her.
What’s behind those eyes? Hard to say, but for now she seems to be in muddled cahoots with Lord Baelish…
Little Finger then reveals the next phase of whatever his plan may be…to rally the Lords of the Vale behind little Lord Robin Arryn…who is one of the most detestable characters in the entire ‘Game of Thrones’ world, so I see no way this ends well.
LOSER: Ser Jorah Mormont
The man who’s been so helplessly stuck in the deepest, darkest regions of the friend zone for years has been outed for previously spying on the love of his life, Daenerys Targaryen. Waaaaaaaayyyy back when, back in the days of the Dothraki hordes still being at Dany’s side, Ser Jorah passed on information to the crown back in King’s Landing in exchange for a royal pardon.
Why this means nothing in the current setting? Well, the King who pardoned him, Robert Baratheon, has long been dead…and he’s since fallen helplessly in love with Dany and her royal ladybits. But, the timing of what and when he did isn’t relevant to the trust of Daenerys, and thus her most loyal sword has been banished from her side. She chooses to blame him for the death of her child, and hell hath no fury like a mother’s scorn.
All things considered he received about as fair of a sentencing as he could have hoped for. The evidence of his back-stabbery is there in overwhelming measure. But it’s a tough sell as I think we all secretly hoped he’d one day get to dip his wick in the royal honey pot, unshackling his manhood from the friend zone dungeon. C’est la vie…arrivederci Mormont…adios muchacho…
Here we’re treated to a very rare occurrence, in which a main character is simply cast aside, and not brutally murdered in front of our eyes then paraded for George RR Martin’s perverse pleasure of seeing we fans squirm in our seats. So I have to believe we haven’t seen the last of The Baby Bear Mormont, until we see his head chopped off.
By simple rule of thumb, the sh*ttier of a person you are in ‘Game of Thrones’ the more likely you are to ascend to power. Case in point, Ramsay Bolton, formerly Ramsay Snow. His father, the traitor who had Rob Stark killed, Roose Bolton, is now Warden of the North and presides over the largest of the 7 kingdoms…well, he’s now legitimized his COMPLETE ABOMINATION OF A BASTARD SON.
The fallout here being he’s now the successor to Roose Bolton, and able to hold both land and respectable titles. I mean, I’m just over here SHAKING MY DAMN HEAD this freak of a boy who cuts off iron born wieners, and peels the skin off men for fun…and now he’s like 1 death away from ruling the largest tract of land in Westeros. WHERE’S IS THE F*CKING JUSTICE?!?!???!!!
I’m praying to both the Old Gods and the New that this peckerwood one day gets eaten alive by a direwolf. But given the extreme lack of direwolfs these days, I’d say it’s not likely to happen…
The lone high point of this otherwise infuriating transgression is that the scene closes with a glimpse of the Boltons marching towards Winterfell. Where it all began. So maybe I’ll keep my fingers crossed after all for a Bolton-mauling-by-direworlf…
WINNER: Little Finger
It seems Lord Petyr has finally taught the little bird to play the Game of Thrones. Through their conversation we see that Sansa’s beginning to understand the value of planning your lies two steps ahead, when self preservation is at stake.
This episode’s awkward sexual tension hits a several week high when Sansa knowingly tells Little Finger that she’s cognizant of his pervy machinations, and his sexual desires are obvious. The entire exchange made my skin crawl a bit, and sent little wanger plummeting back down in to the depths of characters I don’t want to see catch a break. But like I said before, the worse your moral fiber is in Westeros, the more likely it is that your life ends up full of golden dragons and divine punani.
LOSERS: The Little Wolf
We were SO CLOSE here to a joyous reunion of the Stark sisters! SOOO CLOSE!!! We’ve been waiting how long now for one of these Stark reunions, and we’re robbed of it like this?
I mean, her sister’s right there, they’re just happening to deal with country bumpkin knights who don’t seem to recognize the value in still dragging lil Arya up the Vale to at least be protected by the knights sworn to her family. Instead it’s all “oh, your creepy aunt died, sorry I had to be the one to tell you, move along now.”
Though everything from this episode we’re about to discuss after this point is on a WHOLE OTHER LEVEL, this was one of the most disappointing GoT moments in many moons. On the flip side however, this leaves Arya free to keep roaming until she’s one day reunited with her GLORIOUS DIREWOLF. Have I mentioned how bored I am recently with the lack of direwolf badassery?
LOSER: The New Gods
A trial by hand-to-hand combat in order to determine if Tyrion’s guilty of regicide, the result of which is said to be determined by the Gods. If Tyrion is guilty, which we know for FACT he isn’t, then his champion Prince Oberyn will be vanquished by the Big Bad Mountain.
Surely there’s no way this can go awry? Prince Oberyn has the opportunity to AVENGE his sister who (along with her children) was raped and murdered by The Mountain during the overthrow of the Mad King Aerys II Targaryen. I’m fully aware that sh*t goes down in war and people are typically not held accountable…but, for the Martell’s to rule over Dorne, one of the seven kingdoms, and somehow NEVER get their revenge on some knight of no nobility…well that’s just fuxxed up.
So, like I said, there’s simply NO WAY things can go wrong here: Tyrion is innocent, his champion is fighting a just cause.
Now seems like a good time for George RR Martin to drop one of his famed deuces all over our collective chests, right? Just when we think we KNOW FOR CERTAIN how things SHOULD shake out, he wags his grubby little finger of death and scribbles down the EXACT OPPOSITE of events that we all were SO F*CKING CERTAIN were going to happen.
The whole series of events actually takes off fairly warmly, with some fraternal banter between Jamie & Tyrion, setting the mood that they’re uncertain of Prince Oberyn’s deadly fighting acumen, and are using humor and stories to defuse the awkward tension. It’s a nice moment between two brothers. Who knows if we’ll ever see another moment like this between the two Lions of House Lannister. RELATED: WHY THE F*CK DID THE COUSIN KILL THE BEETLES?!?!?
Ah yes, the bell’s a tolling. The hour for vindication is at hand! The people want a show and a SHOW THEY WILL GET!
Our friends over at Uproxx put together this fine collection of GIFs recapping the ensuing mayhem.
All of this feels WAAAAYYY TOO ‘Inigo Montoya’ circa Princess Bride, but the dialog sticks mostly true to the books, and for that we thank HBO. Who’s to say if George RR Martin is a big fan of 1980’s comedies, certainly not me.
Everything looks like it’s going according to plan! He killed that dude, right? I mean, we watched the fatal blow be struck. The theatrics are now moving, the passion is palpable on every word out of Prince Oberyn’s mouth….But wait…Oh. F*CK.
Well, shiiiiiiiiiiit. That was honestly the most disturbing death I’ve ever witnessed on television.
I’m not one for the horror genre, so I must confess that my experience with sadomasochistic killings on TV isn’t that deep. But holy hell am I speechless. Just like Arya was right there at the gate to be reunited with her sister, life back on track, Tryion too saw his whole world being set right in the face of countless wrongs. Only to then be pronounced ‘sentenced to death’ by means of choking on the mountain’s manhood (I made that last part up, but it could happen?)
So, here we stand: the best new character of this season is already dead…and Tyrion, the most universally beloved ‘Game of Thrones’ character is facing certain execution. But notice I used the world ‘certain’ there? Because any time I claim something to be certain these days the exact opposite happens, thus I’m reversing the juju in to Tryion’s favor? Or is this like a wishing well, where once I say state my wish of his life to continue I’ve all but condemned him to death by snu snu? Damn, how important are my prophecies?
Tune back next week to find out how all this shakes out and once again rip me one in the comments and tell me how I have no place writing words on the Internet. Or better yet, follow me on Twitter HERE to tell me how stupid I am.
BUT FIRST! Check out this INCREDIBLE ‘Game of Thrones Supercut: Fan reactions to The Mountain vs. The Viper’ we put together today in which we cobbled together the best reactions by fans to the barbaric slaying of Prince Oberyn Martell.
P.s., if we think back to the beginning of this season Prince Oberyn discussed his many daughters…I foresee no future where they’re pleased with their father dying at the hands of the man who raped and murdered their aunt…Sleep on that.