Written by Hannah Dunleavy


Last Night’s Watch

Episode three of Game of Thrones continued the bleak parade of misery and death. Thank the gods there’s no council meeting like a Small Council meeting, says Hannah Dunleavy. Contains SPOILERS.

Tyrion (Peter Dinklage). Photos: HBO.

Did no one pack the Travel Scrabble? Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) bides his time. Photos: HBO.

A fart joke

Yep, there it was, squeezed out at a Small Council meeting. A puff of wonder in another episode that was bleak as a Bolton baby shower. And cloaked in a murk that puts Bladerunner to shame.

Now, I’m not saying GoT doesn’t do two-handers very well. Or that it doesn’t do scenes with hundreds of people in them very well. But recently it’s felt like that’s all we were getting, so it was a treat to see so many of the cast bouncing off each other with such glee.

Diana Rigg owned it, of course, but it’s glorious to see Jaime do what he does best – be a funny prick. While also being the only person in the room with a handle on the magnitude of the situation. More of this please. PLEASE.

“Your father was a cunt”

Talking of funny pricks, the arrival of Smalljon (son of Clive Mantle) Umber to the Bolton table was both a triumphant lesson in the comedy potential of rampant swearing and a back-to-form, wolf-killing, goodie-imperilling horror show.

Rickon and Osha have been in the wind* for so long it was both inevitable that they would reappear and easy to forget they even existed.

“Jon Snow’s heading south – I’m guessing – for some sort of revenge – I’m guessing – but isn’t really breaking his oath – I’m guessing – since he’s sort of dead – I’m guessing.”

I don’t know what more to say about this other than the last thing this series needs is another gratuitous rape scene and child killing.

*Pretty unusual for GoT: the only other people who’ve been AWOL for quite so long are Gendry and the blokes that gave him up, the Brotherhood Without Banners.

“You shouldn’t be here, it’s not right”

Or, “completely fucking mad”, whichever works for you. Jon’s back on his feet, to the surprise of the Red Woman (clearly not on Twitter). He’s heading south – I’m guessing – for some sort of revenge – I’m guessing – but isn’t really breaking his oath – I’m guessing – since he’s sort of dead – I’m guessing. (This is what brings you back week after week, right? This sort of insight.)

Fate and geography would suggest that’s going to put him in the path of the new Lord Bolton. But more than that, the long shot of Jon’s hesitation at cutting the rope and sending a boy to his death, contrasted with Bolton’s cheerful abandon at the prospect, means my money’s on this series concluding with some sort of Battle of the Bastards. But what do I know?

Arya with a staff

Staffing issues: Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) hones her combat skills.

Other thoughts

Candied plums. Shittest bribe ever.

I used this picture to avoid spoilers on the front page, but I’ve not got much to say about Arya’s nihilistic bootcamp. Other than that there was a point when I liked spending time with Jaqen H’ghar.

Still not grabbed by whatever it is Bran is up to with Rip Van Sydow. Sorry, I will get round to writing more about it at some point.

The Sons of the Harpy are being funded by the CIA (in effect, and look how that usually goes) and Tyrion and Grey Worm may one day play a drinking game. There’s hope for Meereen yet.

Not enough time or space to mention Varys. But I love him. That is all.

Also Sam, still lovely in the face of seasickness and unwanted lessons in homonyms.

The Dothraki WI looks rubbish.

Still no McShane. Boo.

Follow Hannah’s week-by-week Game of Thrones blog here


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Written by Hannah Dunleavy

Hannah Dunleavy is the deputy editor of Standard Issue. She likes whisky and not having to run anywhere.