With the Red Wedding over and done with, Game of Thrones sets the stage for next year's around of atrocities in the Season 3 finale, "Mhysa." Valar Morghulis and see you next year.
Best Vantage Point: Mere moments after stabbing Robb Stark through the heart, ending the King in the North's brief reign, Roose Bolton (can we start calling him "The New Kingslayer" now?) alights to the top of the Frey homestead The Twins to gaze down on the slaughter of the Stark forces happening below. All that bloodshed looks real pretty from up there, huh Roose?
Headiest Sight: While getting the hell out of Dodge before she and the Hound meet the wrong end of a pointy piece of metal, Arya is treated to the unwelcome sight of Robb's mutilated body mounted atop a horse... with Grey Wind's head where her brother's head used to be. Even experienced butcher Clegane looks disgusted by that bit of head trauma.
Headiest Gift Idea: Joffrey may not be an especially good king, but he is a particularly royal a-hole, deciding that what Sansa really needs to see on his wedding day is Robb's decapitated skull on a plate. (On the other hand, we guess his body isn't using it anymore.) Good on Tyrion for rising to his new bride's defense, although that won't do him much good considering...
Saddest (Non-Attendant) Casualty of the Red Wedding: Figures; just when Tyrion and Sansa finally get a little husband-and-wife bonding going (though not the kind his father would like) by figuring out the best way to punish the lords with the gall to snigger in their faces (Sansa's idea: stick sheep dung in their mattress), news of the Frey wedding party reaches King's Landing and reignites the arctic chill between them. Not that we ever expected (or wanted) them to become a real couple, but it sounds like they would have made a fine team of pranksters.
Best Echo Chamber: What's more fun that shouting "Hodor!" into a deep, echo-y well? Nothing, that's what. Thanks as usual for being such a killjoy, Bran.
Most Overdue Identity Confirmation: We've assumed all season long that Theon's unnamed torturer was Roose Bolton's illegitimate son Ramsay a.k.a. the Bastard of Bolton, but it was nice to finally get that nailed down before the season wrapped up. Now, how about a bit less finger flaying next year, okay guys?
Least Welcome Dick Joke: Having been separated from his manhood a few episodes back, Theon is horrified to look up and see his pride and joy vanishing into Ramsay's stomach. Not to worry, dude! He's just chowing down on some pork sausage. No, your penis is actually on its way to your father and sister back on the Iron Islands, so they'll be sure to have it waiting for you when you get home. If you ever get home.
Most Aromatic Nickname: Say goodbye to Theon Greyjoy and hello to Reek, castrated servant to Ramsay Bolton. Could be worse, we suppose. After all, he could have been slapped with the name, "Stinky McNodick."
Most Welcome Returning Character: Theon's bad-ass sister
Asha Yara has spent much of the season at the Greyjoy home base, but it appears she'll be back in a big way in Season 4, as she's commanding a ship with the Iron Islands' 50 best killers bound for continental Westeros on an almost sure-to-be disastrous mission to rescue her sibling. Sure, we'd prefer it if Daenerys finally got her ass to Westeros already, but it's nice to know Yara is making the trip.
Best Geography Lesson: Once a Flea Bottomer, always a Flea Bottomer. At least, that's what Gendry and Stavos discover as they bond over memories of the King's Landing slum from whence they both came. And let it never be said that Flea Bottomers don't take care of their own, as the Onion Knight breaks dead King Robert's bastard kid out of prison to avoid certain death and puts him in a rowboat... although seeing as how Gendry has little seafaring experience and can't swim, that's kinda like sentencing him to certain death anyway.
Best Mama Lion: Hating Joffrey comes so naturally, it's easy to forget that he's still somebody's son. Cersei's to be specific, and she loves the kid no matter what a sniveling snot he's become. "I used to spend hours looking at him, his wisps of hair, his tiny little hands and feet. Such a jolly little fellow," she reminisces to Tyrion. Damn it, Cersei... now you're going to make us feel bad about pushing pins in our Joffrey voodoo dolls. (Available on HBO.com right now! Not, not really. But they should be.)
Most Meta Dialogue Exchange About The Show's Future:
Tyrion: "How long does it go on?"
Cersei: "Until we've dealt with all our enemies."
Tyrion: "Every time we deal with an enemy, we create two more."
Cersei: "Then I suppose it will go on for quite a long time."
Oh please, can it?
Best Replacement Young Wolf: If you're looking for a Stark family member capable of picking up the clan's battered helm, keep your eye on young Arya. The bloody way she dealt with the Frey soldier bragging about sawing off her brother's head suggests that she has the stones necessary to be the Warrior Princess in the North.
Best Shot (Through the Heart): Betrayed and abandoned by Jon Snow, broken-hearted Ygritte sinks three arrows into her ex's body. We think it's safe to say that, after that, they are never ever ever ever getting back together (like ever).
Best Holy Grail Reference: Guess that "gh" in "Night" and "Knight" just trips everyone up, whether it's a French Taunter or an Onion Keh-niggit.
Least Royal Welcome: Slinking into King's Landing clad in filthy robes and missing a hand, it's no wonder that Jaime "The Kingslayer" Lannister is misidentified as a "country boy" by a lowly cart-puller. Welcome home, Jaime! Here's hoping they don't tell you "Service elevator is around the back" at the palace.
Most Royal Welcome: Standing outside the gates of the city her forces have sacked, Daenerys is soon greeted by Yunkai's emerging slave population as a true queen mother amongst women. Boy, she just inspires love everywhere she goes, huh?
Most Memorable Lines:
"Killed a few puppies today?" -- Tyrion, plausibly speculating about the reason for the huge smile plastered on Joffrey's face when he enters the small council session.
"Any man who must say 'I am the King' is no true king. I'll make sure you understand that when I've won for you." -- Tywin, once again expertly putting his grandson in his place.
"Got that to look forward to." -- Walder Frey, looking on the bright side of being a bachelor again.
"My mother taught me not to throw stones at cripples. But my father taught me, aim for their head!" -- Ramsay, highlighting the vastly different parenting styles he's been exposed to in his life.
"Big words, no clothes, what would you have done?" -- Gendry, explaining his susceptibility to Melisandre's charms.
"You've been a good influence on our mutual friend. He used to drink from sundown to sunup, visit three brothels a night, gamble away his father's money. Now it's just the drinking." -- Varys, describing Shae's positive influence on Tyrion.
"It's not easy being drunk all the time. Everyone would do it, if it were easy." -- Tyrion, instructing Podrick in the art of getting hammered.
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