Episode two of this season really brings back an element of the show that was not seen all too much in the first episode: sex scenes. There were three of them total in this episode, and while George RR Martin’s books also contain a lot of these scenes, HBO could do without so many. It is hard enough to fit 100 pages of a book into an hour-long episode, so the priority should go to scenes that drive the plot forward rather than catering to a largely male audience. Luckily, a lot of these sex scenes have been coined the term ‘sexposition,’ meaning that during the scene, the conversation between the couple stays relevant and actually adds to the story.
Aside from this, I thoroughly enjoyed this episode. We finally get to see Theon Greyjoy on his way back to the Iron Islands to try and arrange an alliance between his father, Balon Greyjoy, and Robb Stark. He also very awkwardly meets his sister Yara (In the book her name is Asha but the directors of the show did not want viewers to confuse her with Osha, another character). Well, it turns out Balon wants nothing to do with him, saying that he betrayed his family. We also get a hint that Balon means to go to war and ‘pay the iron price’ in taking back his crown.
Theon Greyjoy all dressed for his return.
Arya Stark also gets much more airtime in this episode, traveling north with the Night’s Watch. A lot of plot development occurs in her scenes. We learn that the Queen has sent her men searching for Gendry, Robert Baratheon’s trueborn son. Also, Gendry learns Arya’s true identity, and some comical interactions soon follow. As a side note I believe that these two characters have great chemistry together, making their scenes very enjoyable to watch.
Nothing too much happens in the way of Daenerys Targaryen. She is still lost in the desert with little food and water. Viewers are probably beginning to sympathize with her as even with her dragons, she still displays vulnerability, especially when one of her scout’s horses returns carrying his head.
Salladhor Saan, a Lysene pirate, is introduced in this show when Davos successfully hires him and his men in their attack against King’s Landing when the time comes. This causes viewers to begin to realize that there is indeed a war coming, with Stannis at the forefront, and a strike aimed right at the heart of Westeros.
This episode was similar to last weeks in that we do not receive the bloodshed that we have become so accustomed to in the first season. However, watching Tyrion continue to defy the queen and essentially rule King’s Landing makes up for this fact. I assume that a boiling point will be reached very soon with many of these characters, as there are currently five kings, when in theory there can only be one.