GoT Recap: Unimpressive, Unhinged, Unendurable

Season 5, Episode 6: Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken

Original Air Date: May 17, 2015

Game of Thrones has two modes. The show is either incredibly wearisome or a showcase
in unfailingly cruelty to its central characters. These two modes often collide in a single episode.

Episode six was another instance of the collision of the sluggish and the nefarious.

This week opens with a dose of the dull. Araya is the best mortician in Bravos. Snooze fest,
round 10,000. The camera cuts to Araya asleep later. That’s what I wished I was doing instead of watching this week’s episode. Then the guy with the greasy long hair shows her what they do with all the bodies she’s been washing and preparing. They have a cavernous hall filled with faces (not macabre at all). Araya looks impressed. She’s the only one who feels that way.

The tedium is incessant this week as we catch up with KG and Dinkles. KG finds out from
Dinkles his (KG’s) dad is dead. Dinkles killed his father Tywin the Puppetmaster. Oh, the daddy issues with these two! Delve into that hunk of meat, show that is something I would watch! My wish will go unheeded this week because KG and Dinkles talk to some other travelers and bargain with them to get somewhere. NEXT.

There was a plethora of Lannister action this week. Jamie and his right hand attempt to rescue Cersei Junior (her name starts with “M” but I’m not looking that up). They are waylaid by the Sand Snakes and other Dorn soldiers. The entire retinue is captured. The excitement factor is now up to zero (it was -20).

Cersei and Littlefinger faff around. My GoT whisper-ers told me Littlefinger wants to become Warden of the North. Blah, politics, blah, machinations, blah.

Cersei doesn’t only faff about with Littefinger this week. She also puts Grandma Tyrell in her place and has Loras and Margery thrown in jail for being a fruity fairy sparkle glitter king and for perjury, respectively. So much for the Lannister-Tyrell alliance.

Thus far, we’ve discussed one mode of the Game of Thrones: the sluggish. Now, it’s time to talk about the wicked mode. There is no better way to show the absolute apex (nadir?) of human callousness than to show Sansa’s ordeal in the North with the Boltons. Mindless Miranda shows up to give Sansa her bath before the wedding. Miranda regales Sansa of the plights of Ramsay’s past lovers. One was hunted down, most dangerous game style. Sansa’s has a well-developed bullshit sensor by this point. “How long have you loved him?” she implores Miranda. Miranda titters off in a huff. A Sansa that stands up for herself is a Sansa I get root for.

After an ominous and awkward wedding, Sansa and Ramsay go to the marital chamber. There, Ramsay rapes Sansa and makes Theon/Reek watch. Incest rape wasn’t enough for this show, it needed to have regular rape too. This show is overwhelmingly (if not completely) created, written, directed, and produced by men. A user review on IMDB by Thomas Drufke (note: a man) beings with the sentence: “I really loved how female centric this episode was.” Yes, Game of Thrones has plenty of female characters, but it is not “female centric”. Women (even women who have power/are royalty) have men tell them what to do or help them make significant decisions. Araya is currently being bossed around by a guy with horrible hair. Dani Khaleesi has male advisors who are constantly telling her what to do. When she makes her own decisions there are horrible consequences. Cersei has to surrender power to her son, still just a boy, and struggles for influence and power in the most bloodthirsty ways possible. I’m not justifying any of her actions, but trying to emphasize the limited recourse she has in her situation. Margery influenced Tommen through sex. Sansa has most significant relationships with men have been marred by manipulation and abuse (Joffrey and Littlefinger). Her current husband raped her (and
that probably won’t be the only occurrence) and will likely continue to inflict intense psychological and emotionally cruelty upon her. I understand this show depicts a “medieval” time period when women had zero agency or rights. However, it’s 2015 and this show is a FANTASY. Plots on this show are due for a change. To make Game of Thrones truly “female centric”, let’s have some women make decisions that aren’t second guessed or belittled. And eliminate the rape.

I will get down from the soapbox now. Even with this dolt of an episode, we’re still left with
questions. Will Jamie escape Dorn with Cersei Junior in tow? Will Loras and Margery be set
free? Will Araya get a new face? Tune in next week as this shit show plunders along.

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