Game of Thrones · HBO · Scholars of the Throne

The Climb Is All There Is

This weeks blog covers:

S3 Ep 4: “And Now His Watch Has Ended”

S3 Ep 5: “Kissed by Fire”

S3 Ep 6: “The Climb”

This Week’s Highlight(s):

This week’s highlights features individuals who seek to take destiny into their own hands.

Although Cersei dismisses Olenna’s muses on the shortcoming’s of the patriarchy by saying it is the will of the Gods, the very next scene, we see Cersei with her father trying to convince him that she is the most logical heir to Casterly Rock and the Lannister legacy. Cersei tries to dismantle Tywin’s stance, by claiming she is next in line of succession and that she may be the only child who actually listens to Lord Tywin’s lip service of the family name. I found this to be a powerful move and well worth the effort. It takes a lot for Cersei to say this to her father, and with all of the empowering women like Olenna and Margaery around, things are going to get even better.

I’d also like to give a shoutout to the Unsullied, especially Grey Worm. In “And Now His Watch Has Ended,” the Unsullied are officially bought by Dany and released unto their masters immediately after. The Unsullied break their chains and become free. Dany tells them that they are free, but asks if they will stand in solidarity and fight for her anyway. As Grey Worm later explains in “Kissed by Fire,” he will not change his slave name, because it was the name he had when he was freed by Dany. It is Grey Worm’s and the other Unsullied’s desire to create their own destiny that is really changing up the landscape of the Game of Thrones universe.

This Week’s Lowlife(s):

This weeks lowlifes go to all those that participated in the mutiny at Craster’s Keep. After a massive attack of white-walkers and losing 200 men, I completely understand the desperation that the Night’s Watch were facing. Craster being such a repulsive man did not help either. Karl, Rast, and several others begin open rebellion and kill Craster and even the Great Bear, Jeor Mormont. It’s just a devastating moment, but Samwell and Gilly are able to escape, which probably could have never happened without the mutiny.

Thought Provoking Theme(s):

Revenge

Jaime and Brienne’s relationship proves stronger and increasingly worth each other’s protection through these episodes. Jaime has been robbed of his sword hand and essentially his identity. He falls off his horse and tries to provoke Locke’s men to kill him. Jaime cannot handle living without his hand. In an epic scene, Brienne tells Jaime that he needs to focus on revenge to survive. She calls him out for not being able to handle the real world; that Jaime would rather cry, whine, and quit when something important is taken. This will forever change Jaime, but I really think it will be for the better. Humility is a sweet thing for the soul in this world and ours.

Another example of revenge is Lord Varys’ in “And Now His Watch Has Ended.” After Varys reveals the story of how he was cut by a sorcerer for sacrifice and left for dead, he tells how he spent the rest of his live determined to live and prosper to a point where he could exact revenge on the sorcerer. Varys tells Tyrion to be patient for his opportunity for revenge, and assures that it will come to him. Revenge is an incredibly significant emotion and source of our emotion in our world and theirs, but unfortunately no one seems to realize it futile nature.

Chaos

In arguably one of the most shocking scenes to unfold in the series yet, we begin by finding Baelish gazing longingly at the throne and an important theme for this week, chaos. His idolization of the most powerful seat in Westeros has gone as far as counting its every blade. Lord Varys makes a remark about Baelish having to settle for Lysa Arryn and admitting to even enjoying thwarting Baelish’s plans. Varys explains that all he does is for the good of the realm. This is when Baelish gets yet another ridiculously good monologue that establishes exactly how well he is playing the game of thrones. Baelish explains to Varys in “The Climb”:

“Chaos isn’t a pit. Chaos is a ladder. Many who try to climb it fail and never get to try again. The fall breaks them. And some, are given a chance to climb. They refuse, they cling to the realm or the gods or love. Illusions. Only the ladder is real. The climb is all there is.”

This sociopathic tale of chaos juxtaposed alongside the reveal of psychopathic Joffrey’s first murder, shakes the viewer to the core. This is when you truly understand Baelish, how far he will go to exact vengeance to those who wrong him, and the atrocities he would commit and condone to achieve the Iron Throne. Baelish thrives on chaos and uses it to navigate his way through this world. It’s the most astonishing, yet almost corrupt way of winning over the crown. I’d take the shadow demon baby any day over Baelish’s conniving rat tricks.

Meanwhile, Joffrey unleashes his own form of chaos. During Varys and Baelish’s scene, we cut back to find Joffrey unleashing his own form of chaos. Through parallel editing, both scene’s are simultaneously being revealed. Baelish’s power and stakes in the game are revealed, and we find Ros tied to Joffrey’s bed, dead, arrows throughout her body. We’re dealing with very sick individuals and situations in this series. It is chaos they flourish, but with such instability, I wonder how long they can each keep it up. Only time will tell.

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4 thoughts on “The Climb Is All There Is

  1. I like your analysis of the chaos that is taking place in Westeros. I think it is worth mentioning the chaos that Daenerys has created on her quest for her army. We have seen all the council members of Qarth have all died and the Unsullied have killed the masters in Astapor. These two cities will never be the same because of her intervention.

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  2. You made me think Brienne is kind of a life coach. Buck up and be a man, Jaime! So sayeth Brienne. The chaos statement is worth quoting. I think in light of what I am reading about Season Six, Baelish isn’t ultimately the major player that he seems at this point. But he reminds me so much of the arms dealers who make all kinds of money when the world is at war. Very shocking way to end the Roz character. That wasn’t in the book, but it sure makes Joffrey to be capable of delivering the evil that he more often orders.

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  3. The more I think about it, Brienne is probably one of the few woman (Cersei most likely) that has ever challenged him and not just fallen immediately for his good looks and charm. What’s interesting is they both have a sense of duty but for different reasons. Brienne seems to see her duty seriously as as her main motivation whereas Jaime seems to see his duty to his family and last name as a burden. The grass is always greener on the other side, but always just as hard to mow.

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