“You’re hereee, there’s nothing I fearrr…” It speaks to our grand expectations of Game of Thrones that a storyline about a fiery redhead and her Dashboard Confessional fan lover climbing up a 700-hundred-foot wall made of ice could be considered kind of boring, and yet here we are: Jon and Ygritte added an unwanted “My Heart Will Go On” (or Miley Cyrus’s “The Climb”) feel to “The Climb,” leading to probably the weakest episode of the season.
It’s not that I dislike the Wildings — they’re arguably the most sensible characters on the show; whereas the climb Littlefinger speaks of during his episode-ending monologue is figurative for those who bow to Joffrey, it’s all too literal for Mance Rayder & Co. But rather, when murderous kings and “sword swallower” quips are involved in King’s Landing, I’d much rather spend time there than Beyond (or On) the Wall, where much of the action in “The Climb” takes place. It also doesn’t help that Jon Snow lacks any semblance of charisma, at least for now. But now that the giant metaphor has been scaled and conquered, things should get better, for everyone except Ros. Poor, poor Ros.
Jaime and Brienne are Game of Thrones‘ old married couple who fight and bite and fight, but ultimately love one another. He won’t let Roose Bolton hand her over to Robb for her alleged assistance with Cat’s treason, even if it means he’d be returned to King’s Landing, so long as he reassures Daddy Tywin that Roose had nothing to do with his new look; she helps him cut his food. Together, they’re snappy dressers.
“You know how I know you’re gay?” Lady Olenna began, inducing a groan from Tywin. He had heard that she was a joke-teller, but he had no time for laughs; there was work to be done and arrangements to be made. But he was also smart enough to know that this mirthful woman wouldn’t leave his side until he indulged in her senseless tomfoolery. He irritatingly replied, “How?” growling out each letter, his teeth clenched in annoyance. “Because you’re the first King’s Hand I’ve known to add ‘jobber’ to the end of his title.” Tywin chuckled for the first time in 25 years.
Ygritte was one of my favorite characters in the books, but Rose Leslie plays her with a certain audaciousness that I find even more appealing on-screen. It’s not just her quick wit and love of sentences that end with a person’s entire name I find appealing; I also like the way she plays the Wilding as if she’s both disgusted and fascinated by the world around her. There’s a charming unpredictability (well, charming for us; terrifying for Jon) to the character that’s all Leslie.