3.1 "Valar Dohaeris" - SPOILERS

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valar_Dohaeris

Beyond the Wall
The episode begins in darkness with sounds of a battle. Samwell Tarly (John Bradley) stumbles upon a beheaded man of the Night’s Watch and is attacked by a Wight, who is killed by the Lord Commander Jeor Mormont (James Cosmo). The Lord Commander reprimands Samwell for not sending Ravens south to warn the wall of the incoming army.

Jon Snow (Kit Harington) encounters a giant, as Ygritte (Rose Leslie) escorts him to Mance Rayder’s tent. Jon Snow goes before Mance Rayder (Ciarán Hinds). When brought to his tent, he mistakes Tormund Giantsbane (Kristofer Hivju) for the King, but Mance reveals himself to Jon. He questions Jon’s loyalty, but accepts him as one of his own after hearing his story.

In King’s Landing
In King’s Landing, newly knighted Ser Bronn (Jerome Flynn) has returned to Tyrion’s (Peter Dinklage) service, for a much higher fee. Tyrion, who has been scarred since the Battle of Blackwater, has been shut in recluse in a small room ever since his father arrived to take the glory for the defeat of Stannis’ army. He is visited by his sister, Cersei (Lena Headey), who questions what he will say to their father upon seeing him. When meeting with Lord Tywin (Charles Dance), who has taken over the role of Hand of the King, Tyrion’s request for recognition of his accomplishments during the Battle of Blackwater is dismissed. Tywin tells Tyrion that he is an embarrassment, is angered that he is his son, and that he will not inherit the family home, Casterly Rock.

Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner), still being accompanied by Shae (Sibel Kekilli), is approached by Petyr Baelish (Aiden Gillen), who informs her that he is in negotiations to take a role that would remove him from King’s Landing. He offers to smuggle her out, if Sansa can keep quiet about the plan. Ros (Esme Bianco) is careful to tell Shae to watch out for Sansa’s well-being, especially when dealing with Lord Baelish.

King Joffrey and Lady Margaery (Natalie Dormer) travel through Flea Bottom in a caravan where the lady stops and exits her carriage and goes to an orphanage to comfort the children. Joffrey, cowardly and afraid, hides in his carriage with the windows shut. At dinner with the Tyrells and Cersei, Joffrey (Jack Gleeson) trades veiled insults with his mother.

In Blackwater Bay and at Dragonstone
Davos (Liam Cunningham) has been revealed to be alive, stranded on a rock in the bay outside King’s Landing. He is picked up by a ship belonging to Salladhor Saan (Lucian Msamati), his old friend. It is revealed that Davos’s son Matthos is dead, that Stannis (Stephen Dillane) is in seclusion at Dragonstone, and that Melisandre (Carice van Houten) is burning people alive at his castle. He convinces Salladhor to drop him off there, where he loses his temper at Melisandre, attempts to kill her, and is sent to the dungeons.

At Harrenhal
Robb Stark (Richard Madden) has arrived at Harrenhal, where he wishes to fight Lannister troops. Upon entering the castle, however, it is discovered that Gregor Clegane has left it abandoned and over 200 Stark prisoners are found slaughtered and mutilated. Roose Bolton (Michael McElhatton) gives sympathy to a still-grieving Lord Karstark (John Stahl) who expresses his frustration that Catelyn Stark (Michelle Fairley) let Jaime Lannister go. Bolton assures Karstark that Jaime will be found soon, as his best hunter is after them. Robb stumbles across a survivor among the dead, a man named Qyburn (Anton Lesser).

Across the Narrow Sea
Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) has arrived at Astapor in Slaver’s Bay and is considering buying renowned eunuch slave soldiers, the “Unsullied”. She and Ser Jorah (Iain Glen) witness a demonstration of their fortitude, but Daenerys is horrified to hear of the gruesome training they endure. Upon walking throughout a nearby market, a warlock, masked as a young girl attempts to assassinate Daenerys with a scorpion, but is thwarted by a cloaked Barristan Selmy (Ian McElhinney), who swears his allegiance to her.


This episode seemed like a soft season opener for me. Not too much in the way of actual events, more just transitioning from the end of last season to the beginning of this one.

In hindsight I’m glad I elected to watch Walking Dead and Talking Dead instead of this Game of Thrones episode live (but that too was both pleasant and slightly disatisfying - a story for a different thread).

~Shooter Out

This episode was all about the placement of the game pieces. Mance Raider’s reveal was, for me, a lot of fun. Ciaran Hinds nailed just the right tone for him. I think Sam’s part in it was simplified perhaps too much from the book. I am liking the more mature Jon Snow. Mance is right he wants to be a hero but his determination in this was nice to see.

Margaery is still one to watch, there’s a hell of a lot going on there. She’s playing politics way better than Cersei is. Joffrey is 16 with a beautiful woman showing interest. He’s in penis mode.

Tyrion: I don’t want him mad at me! His & Tywin’s interaction was painful to watch. Tyrion once again got the better of the exchange with Cersei.

Bronn: Totally loving Bronn & developing way too much interest in him! eek I still want to see 1 1/2 Men with him & Tyrion, It would be the best comedy on television!

Sansa: Shae may or may not be able to keep her out of trouble. She’s trusting the wrong people & Little Finger is giving me the creeps! SHae & Ros may be interesting to watch.

Robb & Catelyn: This was just set up, but she has put him in a horrible position. We’ll see where it goes

Dragonstone: Loved seeing Salladhor again! He knows precsely where he stands & is content where it is. LOVED Finally seeing Davos’s hand but he played that interaction with Mellisandre poorly. She’s acting like a cult leader believing her own press. Stannis is typical Stannis, asshole douchebag.

DRAGONS!!! THEY WERE FISHING! EEEEEEEEEEE!!! So big! They looked great. They’re definitely focussing on Drogon more than the other 2.

Dany: This Slaver asshole is signing his own death warrant & doesn’t even know it! “Westerosi whore” indeed. Jorah is never satisfied! Creepy warlocks! Selmy is here! YAY!!!

Overall I liked, but again this is placing the pieces on the board. Next week we start to see them move.

I agree with you both. The episode was part refresher and mostly set up. For a person like myself who has watched everything before but didn’t study the content I appreciated being eased back into the narrative. Frankly there were a few people that I scratched my head wondering, “Wait, who is that? What was their story?” but by the end of the episode I was all caught up.

A good intro to what I hope is an excellent season. I am warming up to the magic / fantasy elements, but that is my own dumb problem. I came into this series thinking it was going to be a historical retelling of the creation of modern England / France / Scotland / Wales / Ireland / Norway. The creepy Witch who birthed a ghost that could murder people I thought went over the line and lost me somewhat. The dragon thread at first held me back, but now I am full in. Flying dragons fishing and cooking the fish in one fell swoop? That is something new. That is clever. I’m in.

I hope people don’t mind a few book comparisons. I’m not going to be a dick and spoil anything that is coming up, but I think there’s a few things to note about this episode. I’m quite surprised considering the title that there was no Arya at all, hers is one of my favourite stories. It was an interesting choice not to try and conceal Barristan Selmy’s identity, although I think having Strong Belwas would have been fun. Obviously there was no way they could have concealed Barristan from the viewers, but it might have been fun to have the viewers aware but Dany not. I’ll look forward to seeing more Barristan, I remember when the Ian McElhinney was in Hornblower (so many in that show have gone on to do good sci fi and fantasy stuff) he was great in it also.

I forgot how much a dick Tywin can be to his own son until this episode. Those episodes between him and Arya last season left me with a different outlook on his character and this episode felt like a cold slap in the face about the type of man he still is, book or not. I was happy we got Ser Barristan so early! The nipple slicing scene made cringe and they made some great casting for Mance.

God, I felt so bad for Tyrion! His father was horrible to him. As he was walking away, you could just see the pain in his eyes. Peter Dinklage captures the essence of that character wonderfully.

With all the characters in the books, I keep wondering why they made the decision to expand a character like Ros. It makes sense that she is working with Littlefinger, but I just question the need for character development on such a minor character. Littlefinger is so creepy though, ugh!

I was hoping to see Arya as well, but it looks like she will show up next week.

All in all I thought it was a good season opener. The hour went by fast- I could have kept watching had the episode run longer. What a great show!

Game of Thrones: 3x01 - Valar Dohaeris
Welcome back to my weekly thoughts covering the new Season 3 episodes of HBO’s Game of Thrones. Spoilers abound for the Season Premiere!
3x01: Valar Dohaeris
I’m not a big fan of the trick they used to gloss over the White Walker battle in this Premiere, like they did in the Lannister/Stark skirmish in Season 1, but they have to save their money somewhere.
At least they gave us Ghost coming to the rescue.

Gorgeous Iceland vista:

Now that is a Giant! So that is what Osha mentioned to Theon in Season 1.

Couldn’t see someone better cast as Mance Rayder than Ciarán Hinds.

Ygritte still checking him out?

Sound argument by Jon Snow to convince the Wildlings why he wants to join them.
Don’t you dare to disrupt Bronn!!

“Ser Whosit of Whocares” lol
The Glorious Amigos. Loving their bantering.

Davos has seen better days.

You can even see the hanged bodies in this effects shot of Harrenhal.

So Roose Bolton promises that he sent out his best hunters to recapture Jamie. Vargo Hoat anyone??
Qyburn…why did they had to find Qyburn alive???!! :eek:

This long dialogue between Tywin and Tyrion may be the highpoint of this episode. So much animosity.
New English word I leaned: Harlots
Now Tywin really gets furious.

Looks like Ser Dontos won’t play a future role.
Wonderful track playing in this lunch scene.

Daenerys looking like a proud mama.

Come here little Drogon.

Lovely Dragonstone, though not my favorite vacation spot.

Walter Bishop from Fringe would call Melisandre a VIPER!

I’ve wondered what Joffrey was sniffing there on his handkerchief. Could be perfume since he is down in Flea Bottom, basically the Favéla of King’s Landing.
What piercing blue eyes Natalie Dormer has.

A Westerosi Mother Theresa…

So much subtext in the dinner-scene. We wouldn’t have gotten something like that in previous seasons.

Hello Astapor! I try to remember if these golden Monuments were also in the books.

High Valyrian, great job by the guys who created the Dothraki language.

Missandei, you better not be another Mirri Mazz Durr.

Have they looted enough stuff in Qarth to pay for 8.000 Unsullied?
They could have shown us more of Selmy fighting with Mormont.

The head really looks like Pyat Pree.

Overall, a very strong season premiere. They left out some plot-lines like Arya or Jamie, but this enabled them to extend and concentrate more on others.

You know this episode was a lot of set up and exposition, but somehow it still managed to be intense and nail biting. Really want to see what is going to happen with Selmy now that he back in play.

Competition for Jorah Mormont. :wink:

This year, my Heavy Metal Games of Thrones Reviews are running on AOL’s Noisecreep, a rad hard rock/metal website. Themes, art, character development? You can read about that anywhere. Only my reviews evaluate how metal the episodes are:


Ros is a show creation, she’s an amalgamation of a few characters designed to cut down on a massive cast of characters.