Editor’s Note: “The Eye of Newb” contains spoilers from the episode listed. If you have not watched the episode written about, you have been warned. But as Matt has not read the books (as of yet), you do not have to worry about future spoilers. Enjoy!
The Eye of Newb: Game of Thrones (HBO) Season 2 Episode 1: “The North Remembers”
By: Matt Lynch
“You love your children. It’s your one redeeming quality. That and your cheekbones.” - Tyrion Lannister
So, Good People, it appears that, despite your fervent hopes and murmured prayers, last season’s poll and The Landlord have spoken. The Newb returns to opine amongst You. I’m grateful to be welcomed back and fortunate enough to have spent the viewing of Episode One amidst a cavalcade of wicked interesting and very nice folk Chooch, Viv, Scott, Hizzoner, and the inimitable Molly were my companions for ‘The North Remembers’.
Before I launch into my initial tirade (for this year) regarding the natural inferiority of the pure fantasy form, I feel a due diligence apology is in order. The Newb will have some, shall we say, “time management” challenges during the first few weeks of the second season. No alibis, but I am not only humbly submitting this screed for your collective derision and/or approval, but also completing a rather important (to the tune of 50% of final grade) research paper. Mea culpa is all I can offer. S’better than a stick in the eye, though, yeah?
Part the First, wherein Geoffrey is a prissy, bloodthirsty twit (again), and a bag of chips is breached with dramatic flair by Chooch.
- Seriously. Joffrey = Twit. Hopefully the writers off him quickly and mercilessly.
- I’ve never cared much for wine, but I daresay the bumbling Ser Dontas the Red cares for it even less than I having drunk it by the cask. At least sweet, clever, if pitifully morose Sansa uses his misfortune to save his sodden life.
- Sweet!! His Impness arrives armed with Insults Copious! Suddenly, the show is redeemed, I remember why I made it through the first season, and Bronn is awarded the first great one-liner of the night.
- Joffrey has no idea what’s coming. Hee, hee, hee.
Part the Second, wherein Cersei is ferociously gob-smacked, and the first of many allusions to the season following Autumn is uttered. (At 6:50 into the season?! Really?!! It’s a natural cycle, fictional persons! Perspective!)
- Double-yay! Baelish. More than a five-year cold snap = fewer peasants. Snicker.
- Cersei… still a bitchy ice queen. Consistency is nice.
- The whistling offstage heralds but one (small) man.
- Hmmm.. that’s quite a portent-filled glance between Baelish and Tyrion. It bodes well for a season of Imply magic in King’s Landing.
- Awesome. Cersei is literally irate at Tyrion’s new assignment. This makes me all warm and fuzzy inside. Well, okay, the Gaelic Ale is arguably helping some, too. Still…
- Line of the night at 9:36. (that and your cheekbones). Almost makes up for all the sturm and drang about the snowy season.
Part the Third, wherein Bran gets testy and strange dreams occur without the freakishness of a three-eyed bird.
- Not much to say here, except that that is one of the cheesiest comet trails I’ve ever seen and Nymphadora Tonks has turned into some sort of sylvan astro-herpetologist. Amazing what Ye Olde Serving Wenches Academy is turning out these days.
Part the Fourth, wherein Sweet Dany does her best Moses and Hi-yo Silver bites it in the the Red Waste.
- Aww, poor horsey. You’re dragon din-din, now.
- Gibberish with subtitles again? What is this? Star Trek?
Part the Fifth, wherein we meet the Sister Wives and learn that the North is no place, even for Wildings.
- This Mance Rayder seems an interesting fellow. Could be a fun thread to go exploring this season.
- BTW, what, O Sage Readers, is it with all of the smallholder freakazoids who have nothing better to do than schtup their own offspring? This is your idea of a compelling world where one would want to spend some time? Bah.
- Sage advice from Mormont to Bubba Snow Tep, though. Jon is an uppity, overconfident and brooding bastard who could use a lesson or two in following orders.
Part the Sixth, wherein we learn to never trust redheads in ceremonial cloaks burning effigies, and finally meet Stannis Baratheon.
- Hmmm… esoteric seaside ceremony revolving around fire and incantations… where the vestal virgins at?
- How (yawn) Arthurian. Pull the blade from the pyre and speak the words of destiny. Snnk…zzzzzzzzz…urk.. wha?
- This old monk is not long for the world. I’m calling it right now, dead within five minutes.
- I do like Stannis’ personality, I must say. The kind descriptor would be something along the lines of ‘direct’.
- Lord of Light? WTF?
- Bend the knee or I will destroy them. I like the sound of that.
- Yep. Dead monk. RIght on cue.
- This new redhead is eeee-vil. Awesome.
Part the Seventh, wherein, oh never mind. Nice doggie. Nice doggie. Rip off the Kingslayer’s face now… go on… that’s a GOOD doggie… no wait. Dammit. Bad doggie.
Part the Eighth, wherein we learn that Shay can smell cum from a balcony and is an equal-opportunity geographical copulator.
- Peter Dinklage needs another award. Stat.
Part the Ninth, wherein Cersei gives us all a lesson in power and a pause button is grudgingly depressed.
- This wordplay between Littlefinger and the Queen Regent is riveting. Seriously.
- Apparently knowledge isn’t power – four armed men who cater to your every crazy whim unquestioningly are. Well played, Cersei. The Newb loathes you, but must concede stellar intimidation technique.
Part the Tenth, wherein some dull stuff happens and I lose interest.
- Just can’t get into murmured threats and bargaining in torchlit tents. Too much setup. Drowning in it. Glub.
- Oh, well. A boy should trust his mother, I guess.
- And speaking of the Stark girls, I wonder how young Arya is faring these days. Anything but this. Anything. no more tents and torchlight.
Part the Eleventh, wherein Joffrey redecorates and mewls like the bitch he is.
- Whoa. I wouldn’t go pissing off yer mum, there blondie-pants. She may love you, as the Imp established earlier, but she’s also got four well-armed men at her beck and call.
- Nice! The little whimper as he’s slapped only stokes my revulsion for the new “King”.
Part the Twelfth, or rather Part the Ros, because she’s too superlative to be enumerated.
- Ha! “Ease into it.” Seeing Ros walk the new young talent through the same indoctrination she got at the elbow of Littlefinger is priceless.
- Haystack Hall? Seriously? Didn’t they film Medieval Hee-Haw there?
- So, so happy Ros is back.
- No. Must look away. Can’t look away. That dude just gutted a baby.
- Crap. I know this feeling. I’m hooked again.
- Rounding up and snuffing out the royal bastards seem to be the order of the day. That makes Arya’s lot a tad more dangerous, given the company she kept at the end of Season One.
- Yep. There it is.
Well, Friends, it was touch and go for parts of Episode One, but between Ros and the eviscerated infant, The Newb is indubitably committed for at least one more week. Thanks for your ongoing patience, and…