The Ninjabot

Game of Thrones: “The Rains of Castamere” Review

Posted on June 2, 2013 at 11:10 pm by Justin Cavender

“Well let’s get ready…”

Tonight’s episode of Game of Thrones had the biggest shock factor since Lord Eddard Stark lost his head. David Bradley returns to the show, reprising his role as Walder Frey of the Crossing, and he certainly brought his A game with him. Bradley was a total creep show in this episode, and his grumpy goose persona had a way of getting under my skin. Fans of the series who have read the books knew this day was coming, but how well did it play out on screen? Pretty amazing if you ask me.

In typical Game of Thrones fashion, the ninth episode of each season hits the audience with both barrels. Tonight, we finally got to see the “Red Wedding,” a crucial turning point in A Storm of Swords, the third book in the series. When Robb arrives at the Crossing, he and his family are presented to Lord Walder Frey to settle unfinished business. Lord Frey does his best to make Robb feel uncomfortable, forcing him to apologize to his five daughters and seven granddaughters for not marrying one of them. Lord Frey is bold enough to insult Robb’s Queen by undressing her with his eyes and complementing her on her attractive body. After the-not-so-warm welcome, it’s time to celebrate the union of the two houses with the marriage of Edmure Tully and Roslin Frey.

“The wine will flow red and the music will play loud…”

Rains of Castamere

Throughout the ceremony Lord Frey smiles at Robb with a creepy uncle vibe. Despite this, Robb displays great patience and humility with the scorned lord, returning the smile. If all goes well, Robb will have his army to take Casterly Rock, very well turning the tide in his war for the Iron Throne. The reception follows the ceremony, and Edmure couldn’t be happier. The same man who’s been complaining all season finally has a moment of joy. Honestly, though, who really cares about that douche?

Shortly after “the bedding,” the mood in the room drastically changes. The band starts to play, “The Rains of Castamere,” a song dedicated to House Lannister’s brutal eradication of their bannermen, the Reynes, after their rebellion against Tytos Lannister. Quite an interesting choice considering the company in the room. Sadly, the song is the cue for the solders to take action, and then the shit hits the fan. Catelyn is no fool and connects the dots rather quickly, but either way it’s too late. She lifts up Lord Bolton’s sleeve to find him wearing armor under his clothing. What a sneaky bastard! At least she gets one good slap across the Leach Lord’s face before Robb’s wife and unborn child are stabbed and murdered. All the Stark bannermen are killed, including Greywind, Robb’s direwolf. There’s a moment when Catelyn pleads for her son’s life, and as much as I can’t stand her character, I certainly felt bad for Lady Catelyn. As far as she knows, she’s lost everything and everyone except for her first born son. Now even that is no longer the case when Bolton stabs Robb in the heart with the message, “The Lannisters send their regards.” Catelyn was able to kill Walder Frey’s wife before her throat was cut, and we’re left with the silence of end credits. The massacre was over in a few moments, but it was long enough to break my heart and turn my stomach.

“… and we’ll put this mess behind us.”

Rains of Castamere

Obviously the Red Wedding was the main focus tonight, but a few key moments did manage to present themselves in this glorious 50 minute episode. Bran and company are in the tower overlooking the Wildlings when Jon Snow finally reveals his true colors. Jon is forced to play his hand when Tormund Giantsbane tells him to kill the horse master. Like his father, Jon is a man of honor and isn’t about to take the life of an innocent man. Instead, he turns on the Wildlings, and after a quick battle with the help of Summer and Shaggydog (Bran and Rickon’s wolves), Jon Snow escapes, likely headed to Castle Black to warn the Night’s Watch of Mance Rayder’s imminent attack. What does that mean for his relationship with Ygritte? Well, the jury is still out on that one, but you better believe the girl kissed by fire is plenty pissed off at the young crow.

Rains of Castamere

Shortly before the incident with the Wildlings, we got to see a taste of Bran’s potential power. There’s a moment when the thunder storm scares Hodor to the point where Bran accidentally “reaches” out to calm the gentle giant, entering his mind super worg-style. This is a new concept for everyone in the tower, including the audience watching at home. Is Bran finally going to be a character we actually care about? I doubt it. Rickon finally got some screen time as he and Osha split from Bran and the Reeds. It was a little sad, but I got over it in about two seconds.

I also want to discuss the relationship between the Hound and Arya. She obviously hates him immensely, but it’s always fun to see him protect her over and over. Yeah, he just wants to get his reward money, but I definitely think he’s taking a liking to her. Arya has arguably more courage than any other character in Game of Thrones, and I’m pretty sure the Hound picked up on that. They shared some fun moments in tonight’s episode , which starts when they beat up an old man. Arya goes on to tell the Hound that she knows his fear and his tragic story. She also promises to stab him through the eye and out the back of his skull. That’s our girl! During the Red Wedding, the Hound has to step in and save Arya once again. She’s so close to her mother and brother, yet likely would have shared their fate had the Hound not knocked her out and carried her away.

Hound and Arya

Lastly we have Daenerys and her council of dude sweat to sack the city. Daario uses his boy band looks and charm to woo Dany into letting him take a small group of men (Jorah and Grey Worm) to enter the city and open the front gates. Sounds simple right? Well, a bunch of soldiers end up getting in their way; but after some chop-chop, stabby-stab sword play, these three men take the city. Jorah and Grey Worm return to Dany’s tent covered in blood to share their good fortune. Dany is only interested in the whereabouts of her handsome new captain, though. Her reaction when Daario appeared made me smile. The Mother of Dragons may have just found a new boyfriend.

Tonight’s episode was my favorite this season. I’m amazed that even though I knew what to expect, the final scene shocked me to my core. Robb’s wife has been an interesting change from the novels, and certainly made the red wedding more tragic. This may sound weird, but hearing poor Greywind get killed was the worst part for me. Yeah, I love animals, get over it.

My Score: A

Please Note – Due the nature of this TV show being quite far behind the books in terms of plot, we want to remind everyone that there is a zero tolerance policy regarding spoilers in the comments. Keep discussions relevant to the show only!

Game of Thrones: Season 3, Episode 9 “The Rains of Castamere” aired June 2, 2013 on HBO.

Follow Justin on Twitter, @Edgyarmo, and let him know what you thought of this crazy episode.

    • Scott Kielty

      Holy balls that was intense! Couldn’t believe my own eyes. You had to know something bad was gonna happen at that dinner. It was just awkward the entire time. Sad episode though. Arya better kill lots and lots of people!

    • The silence over the credits was surprisingly powerful… *shudder*

    • Snackbar

      Having read the books, I thought I would be excited to see the Red Wedding, but I found myself dreading it during the episode. I am glad they got rid of those pesky Starks though. Rob and Catelyn sucked. Plus they got rid of Rickin too.

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