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‘Game of Thrones’ Season 3 Premiere Recap: Tyrion Falls, Daenerys Rises

‘Game of Thrones’ Season 3 Premiere Recap: Tyrion Falls, Daenerys Rises

04/01/2013

Game of Thrones' season three premiere, entitled "Valar Doaharis," begins with Sam fleeing the White Walkers (ice zombies). When Sam encounters a dead Night Watch man holding his own head, he’s attacked by a White Walker, but is saved by Jon’s direwolfe and the Watch. The unfortunate observation is made that winter is coming as the army of the undead continue to head south.

Jon Snow (Kit Harington), North of the Wall like Sam, is being led by Ygritte to meet Mance Rayder/ King Beyond the Wall. Ygritte is coy, mixing flirtation with palpable scorn. “If Mance likes you, you’ll live another day,” she tells Jon, who wants to discover why Mance created his army. Although Mance initially shows skepticism to Jon’s reasons for wanting to join his army, he's ultimately one over.

At King’s Landing, Bronnand's sex with a prostitute is interrupted by Tyrion’s squire Podrick Payne, who informs Bronnand (Jerome Flynn) that Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) wishes to see him. Meanwhile, Tyrion is in his sickbed recovering from battle wounds from Blackwater, and is paid a visit by his sister Cersei (Lena Headey). Although Tyrion doesn’t want to see her, he lets her in but wields an ax for protection.

Cersei remarks, “They’d said you lost your nose, but it’s not as gruesome as all that” – a shout out to the injury in the Fire and Ice books that was omitted in favor of a gruesome facial scar. Cersei, however, isn’t there to inquire over her brother’s health; she wants to talk about Tyrion’s impending visit to their father. She’s eager to know if he will reveal her secret about the parentage of her children – born of her brother Jamie, not her late husband Robert. Tyrion, offers little assurance before he commences drinking. He is then out-quipped by Bronn when the squire asks for a pay increase.

Tyrion (Charles Dance), in fact, only meant to speak to his father about Casterly Rock of the House of Lannister, for which he feels he is the rightful heir. Tywin, Tyrion and Cersei’s father, insists that Tyrion will be properly compensated and rewarded for the Battle of Blackwater, but not with the stronghold of Casterly Rock. His father also promises him that the next prostitute he is discovered to be keeping will be hung.

Tyrion has been keeping company with the prostitute Shae (Sibel Kekilli) at Red Keep, who was given the formal role of Sansa’s maid. Peter “Littlefinger” Baelish (Aidan Gillen) arrives at King’s Landing to try to trick Sansa (Sophie Turner) into believing that he knows where Arya (Maisie Williams) is, and that he’s willing to remove her from Kings Landing.

Davos Seaworth, shipwrecked after the Battle of Blackwater, is saved by his pirate friend Salladhor Saan, who takes him to King Stannis in Dragonstone. There he encounters Melisandre. When Davos pulls a knife on her, Stannis has him arrested.

At Harrenhal, Robb Stark (Richard Madden), Catelyn (Michelle Fairley) and Talisa stand amongst corpses. Robb has his mother assigned a new cell for having freed the Kingslayer in the previous season, while Catelyn aids a survivor.

Back at Kings Landing, Joffrey (Jack Gleeson) spots his wife-to-be, Maegery Tyrell, tending to orphans as he’s carted through Flea Bottom. It’s later revealed at dinner, in which Joffrey is joined by Queen Cersei and Loras, that Tyrell’s been feeding the poor for a while. Although Cersei is put off and threated by her benevolence, Joffrey is unbothered.

Meanwhile, Daenerys (Emilia Clarke), Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen) and the surviving inhabitants of her kingdom are sailing to Astapor with her three dragons tailing close behind. Daenerys is then introduced to her new army composed of the Unsullied – slaves who apparently feel no pain. As Dany and Jorah discuss the morality of owning these battle slaves, a girl tosses a ball at Dany. A stranger intercepts and destroys the evil death scorpion within it. The stranger then reveals himself to be Ser Barristan Selmy, a former kingsguard of her father and Robert Baratheon, who loyally kneels before her as the episode comes to a close.

Games of Thrones’ next episode will be next Sunday on HBO at 9/8c.

Read more: Game of Thrones, Recaps

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