Game of Thrones’ Season 5 premiere broke through the winter’s ice tonight after months of agonizing wait for its return. And, in just the first episode of the season, there’s already a lot going on. The way that George R.R. Martin’s characters weave in and out of each other’s paths throughout all five of the novels is quite an impressive feat — one that HBO handles incredibly well. Tonight’s episode was no exception, as we dipped our toes into the season 5 set-up for many important characters, including Jaime and Cersei Lannister, Margaery Tyrell, Daenerys Targaryen, Littlefinger and Sansa, Tyrion and Varys, Podrick and Brienne, and Jon and the boys of the Night’s Watch.
Tonight’s episode, named “The Wars to Come,” was generally well put together with great pacing and just enough of everyone’s story to wet our appetites for what’s to come in Game of Thrones Season 5. Here are the best moments from tonight’s episode to excite you for the rest of Season 5:
1. Cersei Still Seethes Hatred, But This Time…
We’re already aware at just how angry Cersei Lannister is. She seems to hate everyone in front of her, and before tonight’s episode, that really excluded her brother Jaime (although, admittedly, their relationship has its issues, am I right?). In “The Wars to Come,” Cersei lets brother Jaime have it (“it” in this instance is not what “it” usually is). Cersei’s hatred is clearly split between her brothers as she blames both Jaime and Tyrion for their roles in the death of daddy Tywin. She tells Jaime that she blames him for Tywin’s death, saying, “Tyrion is a monster but at least he killed our father on purpose. You killed him by mistake. Stupidity.” Harsh words, and I’m pretty sure it means we won’t see another creepy crypt sex scene any time soon.
2. ‘Everyone Wants to Know Their Future, Until They Know Their Future’
It’s undeniable that Queen Mother Cersei isn’t the nicest woman on Game of Thrones. In tonight’s episode, we get our very first look at the childhood of Cersei, and we find out she was just as mean-spirited back then as she is now. Young Cersei and her friend (named Jeyne Farman) take to Lannisport’s resident witch, Maggy the Frog (that’s her name, I swear). But why is this scene significant? It shows that, for one, Cersei has pretty much always been a pompous person. Secondly, it shows that Cersei has “known” the outcome of her life since she was a little girl.
The witch says three things of Cersei’s future: She won’t marry the Prince, she’ll be queen for only a short time but then a younger, more beautiful woman will replace her, and three of her children will be king. Interestingly enough, we’ve only been introduced to two of Cersei’s children (former King Joffrey and current King Tommen). Cersei had a black-haired son as her first-born, but he died of a fever. It’s likely that this black-haired son was the third child the witch was referring to, but he never wore a crown. So, this could be alluding to a future pregnancy, although it’s likely not as complicated as all that. Who knows, though.
3. Tyrion Says, ‘The Future Is Sh*t’
Tyrion quickly became one of the most interesting characters on the show (as he was in the novels, of course). Peter Dinklage’s portrayal of the imp is possibly the best overall performance in the series, and he showed that yet again in tonight’s episode. Dinklage has a knack for handling Tyrion’s mini-speeches rather well. Our introduction to post-King’s Landing Tyrion is both amusing and unfortunate, and we can’t help but feel sorrow for him yet laugh at him at the same time. One of his notable quotes from tonight’s scenes is when he says, “The future is sh*t…just like the past.” Then, he proceeds to vomit up the large amounts of alcohol he has consumed. Still, Tyrion decides to travel to Meereen to meet Dany, and we will likely see that meet-up by the end of Season 5.
4. The ‘Sons of the Harpy’ Appear
The Sons of the Harpy are an underground resistance in Meereen and Astapor whom are rising up against their new queen. They are introduced with their gold masks after we see one of them kill one of her Unsullied. This is our first look at the Sons of the Harpy, and we’ll undoubtedly see a great deal more from them throughout Season 5. Even in the source material we don’t know much about the Sons of the Harpy just yet, but hopefully HBO will shed some light on some of the fan theories floating around. How prominent their role in Game of Thrones will be is intriguing.
5. Jon Snow Does the Right Thing … Again
We can always count on good guy Jon Snow. And, that’s really a good thing, since the series has so many shady characters. Jon Snow represents the good of all things, and he shows his soft yet strong side in tonight’s episode by putting Mance out of his misery. Instead of allowing King Stannis to carry out Mance’s death sentence via being burned at the stake, Jon Snow grabs an arrow and puts one in Mance’s chest. Noble, sir.
Other bits of importance:
- Sansa’s now heading west, which isn’t what happens in the novels. What’s west, though? That much we don’t really know, other than the King’s Road.
- Varys sees a great deal of potential in Tyrion to help Dany, and I’m not sure why. Hopefully, we’ll find out what Varys’ true motives are soon.
- Daenarys is beginning to see how dangerous her dragons really are, and for the first time, we see fear in her eyes from her children.