Game of Thrones Season 5 Episode 3 Review: “High Sparrow”

Game of Thrones Season 5 Episode 1 Review




Game of Thrones Season 5 Episode 3

What a packed Game of Thrones episode!

There’s a clear shift in power in King’s Landing, Arya becomes more acquainted with the House of Black and White, Jon Snow makes his first tough decisions as Lord Commander, Sansa meets a new suitor, and Tyrion learns that enemies hide around every corner. Let’s pace ourselves though and take it one major geographical area at a time, as plenty of things happened in this week’s instalment.

In King’s Landing, a completely uneventful wedding marks the union between Tommen and Margaery, who finally becomes queen. However, the wedding night seems to be plenty eventful in comparison. “This is what I want to do all day, every day, for the rest of my life!,” Tommen proclaims, and with a wife as beautiful as Margaery, who can really blame him? Based on his enthusiasm, an heir to the throne might be expected shortly, thus securing the Tyrells for the future. Moreover, the new queen isn’t one for procrastination – she quickly starts to put her plan of shipping Cersei off into motion, by gently suggesting to Tommen that he shouldn’t be a momma’s boy anymore. Since he’s clearly smitten, he tries to convince his mom to relocate to Castely Rock, showing that one queen’s rise must come at the price of another one’s fall.


In an attempt to regain some control, Cersei turns to religion. After the High Septon of the Faith of the 7 is caught in a brothal and undergoes some tough to watch public humiliation, she decides to jail the religious leader and go meet the High Sparrow, the leader of those responsible for the humiliation. The move was quite unexpected. Cersei was never particularly religious, so this is most likely an attempt to regain some of the power she’s lost lately. If it will work, that still remains to be seen.

In Braavos, Arya becomes frustrated with the menial tasks she must perform before she finally gets to train to become a Faceless Man. After Jaqen H’ghar suggests she first needs to let go of her former self, we see Arya throwing most of her life away into the river. With one notable exception – Needle, her trusted steel ally, which she hides amongst rocks. She’s clearly dedicated to become a Faceless Man, but she’s still not ready to let go of the last thing that reminds her of her family. Her efforts are noticed, however, and she gets a quick glimpse at what her duties will be from now on. Washing dead bodies may not be flattering, but at least it beats sweeping floors, we presume.

In the North, we finally find out what Littlefinger’s plans with Sansa are. He wants her to return to Winterfell and marry Ramsay Bolton, so that he could forge an alliance with Roose. This goes to the Bolton’s benefit as well – with Tywin now dead, they have no one left to help them keep the North. We all learned that Northerners are loyal to their own, so having Lady Sansa by their side might help them keep the other houses in check. After all, the North remembers.

Sansa is horrified as she first learns about Littlefinger’s intentions (let’s not forget that Roose brutally killed her brother Robb), but she eventually seems to come around.  Unfortunately for her, although it looked like she’ll become more of a player in the Game of Thrones at the end of last season, she’s still much like a pawn for Littlefinger to use as he pleases. On the other hand, despite his abominable character, Ramsay seems to be kinder at heart than Joffrey. The former Bolton bastard is in desperate need for some affection in his life, and if Lady Sansa has learned anything from her time with Lord Baelish, she might be able to tame her future husband and influence him to meet her own purposes. We also see Theon/Reek, who notices Sansa, but keeps clear of her path so far. It’s been a while since we’ve been utterly invested in what’s going on at Winterfell, so this is an exciting turn of events we’re dying to see progress.

Meanwhile, Brienne is still following Sansa closely to make sure she’s alright. We finally see her open up about her past and telling Podrick about just how and why she became loyal to Renly Baratheon. A touching story, which gives the beloved character even more depth. She also reveals that she’ll do anything in her power to avenge Renly’s death, which translates to killing Stannis. That’s going to be a bit difficult, since he currently travels with hundreds of soldiers, but it just means that she will have to try a bit harder. And if there’s something we can vouch for, that’s Brienne determination. If those two ever do face each other, it’s going to be quite the explosive encounter.

At Castle Black, Jon Snow is now Lord Commander, a job which comes with plenty of new responsibilities and difficult decisions for the Stark bastard. After one of Alistair’s lackeys refuses an assignment and disrespects his new boss, Jon cuts his head off with little hesitation, showing he’s clearly got what it takes to rule over the Watchers on the Wall. He also refuses Stannis’s offer to become Jon Stark, despite how clearly conflicted he is about the choice. In response, Ser Davos makes some good points. Why not expand his power to protect all the people of Westeros? Snow doesn’t cave though. Not yet at least.

Finally, on the road to Meereen, Tyrion gets sick of seeing only Varys’s face (“It’s a perfectly good face!”) and decides to make a stop in Volantis. He spends some time listening to an attractive red priest and then hits a brothel, despite Varys’s many objections. Here, however, Tyrion seems haunted by memories of Shae, and decides not to spend any quality time with the girls. He goes to use the “facilities” instead, where he is kidnapped by – drumroll – Ser Jorah. Jorah plans to take the Imp to Daenerys, probably hoping this will be enough to win back his place by the queen’s side again. Getting kicked out of the Friendzone had to hurt, so one can only hope.

With episode three, Game of Thrones is quickly picking up the pace and moving the action in new, unexpected, and exciting directions. How would you like the stories to progress? Comment below, let us know!


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