Sing a song of sixpence and enjoy our highlights recap of the George R.R. Martin-penned seventh episode of Season 3, "The Bear and the Maiden Fair."
Best Critique of (Then) Modern Warfare: Never one to miss the opportunity to poke fun at her know-nothing boyfriend, Ygritte uses Jon's offhand reference to the Kingsroad as a means to call his entire culture into question yet again. "You and your roads," she scoffs. "Is that how you lot do your fighting? You march down the road banging drums and waving banners?" When Jon grudgingly answers in the affirmative, she accepts that as an invitation to needle him further, eventually ridiculing his countrymen's ability to march in time to a simple drumbeat. And if there's one thing you don't make fun of, it's a man's rhythm.
Most Prestigious New Member of the Naked Butts Watch: In case you'd forgotten, Robb's main squeeze Talisa -- who shared a post-coital bit of butt flashing with her on-screen hubby -- is played by Oona Chaplin... yes, as in Charlie Chaplin. She's the Little Tramp's granddaughter and, as if that lineage isn't impressive enough, she also happens to be the great-granddaughter of acclaimed playwright Eugene O'Neill. The only way the show can hope top that bit of prestigious nudity is by getting Diana Rigg to bare her tailfeather in the season finale.
Most Obvious Sign that Nothing, Nothing Bad Will Happen to Talisa and Robb: Awww... Talisa is preggers with Robb's 'lil wolf! That's totally adorable. And boy, what a relief, too. There's no way that anything terrible will happen to this noble soldier now that his blushing bride is knocked up. Decades of watching war movies has taught us that...
Shallowest Reason to be in Love: Cornering Ygritte in one of the rare moments that Jon isn't joined at her hip, a jealous Orell demands to know why she's so enamored of the floppy-haired ex-crow. "You love him?" he asks and she nods in response. "'Cause he's pretty, is that it? You like his pretty hair and his pretty eyes?" Naturally, she storms off, but notice that she never actually comes up with a better explanation for her feelings. That's understandable, though -- we've spent three seasons with Jon now and, quite frankly, there ain't much to him beyond pretty hair and pretty eyes.
Most Uncomfortable Conversation For the Audience: Normally, watching Bronn and Tyrion hanging out and shooting the shit like genuine bros instead of sellsword and employer is one of the great pleasures of Game of Thrones. But when the current topic of discussion is "What's the youngest [girl] you've ever had?" we can't help but feel a little skeeved out. Table the jailbait talk and get back to debating the concept of loans and repayments, okay fellas?
Lamest King: Joffrey may sit upon the Iron Throne, but as his tête-à-tête with Grandpa Tywin makes clear, he's most definitely not the dude in power. The best part of this generally terrific sequence was the slow, steady way that Tywin mounted the steps to the Iron Throne in response to Joff's whiny complaints about having to climb the long, long staircase to the Tower of the Hand if he felt moved to finally attend one of his small council meetings. We can't prove it, but we're pretty sure the kid crapped himself the moment his granddad's foot touched down on the top step.
Coolest Queen: To see what true royalty looks like, just observe the way that Daenerys holds court in the wilderness outside the fortified city of Yunaki. When a peace-seeking diplomat arrives to negotiate her swift departure, he finds the Mother of Dragons abiding regally in a deluxe tent, her three children by her side. Midway through the diplomat's opening salvo, she casually reaches for a piece of raw meat and tosses it to one of the dragons, setting the tone for just how the rest of this "negotiation" is going to play out, which is to say, not well for Yunkai.
Worst (and Best) Homecoming: Gendry's return to King's Landing aboard Melisandre's ship takes him through Blackwater Bay, where the wrecked remnants of Stannis's fleet still rest just beneath the surface of the water. Not exactly the happiest sight to see when returning to your hometown. But then Melisandre reveals a piece of information to him that changes his mood considerable: the blood of deceased monarch Robert Baratheon flows in his veins. We're almost as surprised as you Gendry... none of this stuff happened in the books.
The Lassie Award for Best Bit of Fetching: Fleeing the Brotherhood Without Banners after they take an unscheduled detour from their path toward Riverrun in order to raid a Lannister raiding party, Arya runs straight into the grasp of lurking Hound. Will he get paid for this bit of Stark retrieval in dog biscuits?
Most Unexpectedly Emotional Parting: Gee, remember when Brienne and Jaime couldn't stand each other? Like, back in this season's second episode? Amazing how losing a hand and rescuing someone from rape can alter a relationship. All of a sudden, these two seem like the sweetest, healthiest (non-sexual) male/female couple in all of Westeros.
Most Devious Form of Torture: Theon's torturer has devised some pretty nasty punishments for his captive, but now he's really hitting below the belt. After hiring two comely whores to tempt Theon's staff from half to full mast, the guy pulls the ol' coitus interruptus prank. Finger flaying is awful, sure, but giving a fellow guy blue balls is truly a dick move.
Don Quixote Award for Tilting at Windmills: In their brief time together, Jon has come to learn that few things shock or surprise Ygritte. Which is why he's so taken aback by her flummoxed response to... a windmill. Yes, a windmill, which to her wildling eyes is tall enough to be a palace. She's only flummoxed for a moment, though, before once again busting out that awesome, dead-on Jon Snow impression we've come to know and love. Windmills come and go, but making fun of Jon is forever.
Worst Way to End a Romance: Prior to tromping through the countryside with Bran and Rickon, Osha happily cohabitated with a man named Bruni. When he disappeared one day, she refused to believe everyone who said that he had left her, assuming he'd return in time. And return he did... as a member of the walking zombie dead. "He came at me, grabbed me by the neck and squeezed so hard, I could feel the life slipping out of me," she remembers, adding that she only survived by slipping a knife into his heart and then burning their hut down with him inside. That's certainly one argument in favor of breaking up with someone over the phone.
Olympic Sport That Should Replace Wrestling: Returning to Harrenhal to rescue Brienne from whatever horrendous fate Locke has in store for her, Jaime finds the Maid of Tarth in a pit wielding a wooden sword and fighting... a freakin' bear. We realize it breaks all kinds of animal and ethical laws, but still -- why isn't this an Olympic sport? Or at the very least a reality show?
Most Memorable Lines (and there were a ton this episode -- kudos, George):
"And are you going to share it with me? The deep wisdom you found inside the head of a bird?" -- Jon, getting up in Orell's grill over the whole "You cut my lifeline" thing.
"I've seen wet shits I like better than Walder Frey." -- Brynden Tully, not putting too fine a point on his dislike of Lord Frey.
"Some women like tall men. Some like short men. Some like hairy men, some like bald men. Gentle men, rough men, ugly men, pretty men, pretty girls. Most women don't know what they like until they've tried it. And sadly, so many of us get to try so little before we're old and grey." -- Margaery, instructing the virginal Sansa in the wide world of sexual proclivities that exist out there.
"We could arrange to have you carried." -- Tywin, proposing the most humiliating way possible to get Joffrey up the Tower of the Hand's staircase.
"You waste time trying to get people to love you, you'll end up the most popular dead person in town." -- Bronn, offering up more of that homespun sellsword wisdom.
"While I empty her chamber pot and lick your cock when you're bored." -- Shae, summing up her future after Tyrion marries Sansa.
"Nothing to say? I liked you better before. I don't remember chopping your balls off, too." -- Locke, gifting Jaime with one last verbal blow.
"Well, girls see more blood than boys." -- Ygritte, informing an ignorant Jon about that certain time of the month.
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