Game of Thrones

Season 1 Episode 2

The Kingsroad

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Apr 24, 2011 on HBO

Episode Fan Reviews (16)

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  • Love is at the very heart of Game of Thrones

    Rewatching season 1 till 4, just before season 5 kicks in, is wonderful. Knowing what's going to happen, this episode gets you at the throat. We see the love of Daenarys for Khal grow, the love of Catelyn for Bran and Jon Snow riding to his impendable doom. Game of Thrones is so much better at rewatch and this episode reminds you on how heartbreaking 'The Red Wedding' was. The music that starts in in the scene betweet Jon and Catelyn is beautiful and sad at the same time. What is exactly my feeling when watching this episode. Almost every character we see is dead after Season 4. The foreshadowing is brilliantly done. I don't agree this episode is boring or a letdown, it builds the emotional heart of Game of Thrones. Only to can crush it later.
  • A letdown after the perfect opener, but still very enjoyable

    In the opener for this show, we had some major things happening in the plot, and now we see how the characters live with that. Just as in the George R. R. Martin novels, we see the story told from different points of view and just as in the opening episode, we learn that this show is more focused on introducing us to all the different characters rather than showing us immense fights or special effects like The Lord of the Rings movies. This is something that I highly appreciate and that I loved in "Winter Is Coming", but this episode was still a fairly big disappointment to me. I'll tell you why:

    The first episode of GoT was perfect in every imaginable way. The visuals were immensely stunning, the screenplay was a hundred per cent Emmy-worthy and the actors were really talented. This doesn't also disappear with this episode, but it's a huge surprise that David Benioff and D. B. Weiss weren't able to recreate the unique and fantastic vibe that the screenplay of "Winter is Coming" had with this follow-up. Some scenes are unnecessary (never a good sign for shows like this), they included annoying and idiotic soliloquies at times, and they dialogues aren't so good as they were in the former episode. I wasn't bored at all by this episode because I was already so into all the characters (I watched the opening episode 3 times on 3 days), but it focused too much on stupid stuff. All the stuff with Arya, Sansa, the butcher's boy and this gay prince whose name I always forget was complete nonsense and I can't see how this is necessary to the plot. The show seemed like a soap opera to me at that point. Some other plot parts were really good though, a great example is the one with Daenerys (put more Viserys in the next episode, he is a great character!) who's currently trying to make the best out of her lousy situation.

    Concluding, I enjoyed this episode a lot despite some things that bugged me. It's clearly inferior to "Winter is Coming", but it still has a magnificent visual look (gotta add that: the Blu-Ray quality is just one of the best I've ever seen!) and the actors really make the best out of it! The outstanding cast member in this episode was Lena Headey who was a fantastic minor villain.
  • Tested, the characters reveal themselves.

    This episode was mainly about finding out what characters would do when tested. Daenerys tried to make the best of her situation--I was literally cheering her on, and happy that she wasn't assigning herself to sulking and slavery. Arya showed herself a wild child and a good friend. Joffrey showed himself as a despicable, cruel, smirking, powerful coward.

    Also, the dire wolves were quite important in this episode. It was hard to see Miria run and Lady die after seeing Bronn's defend him so. That part was great.

    I was upset at Lady Stark for her harshness and her weakness, but I think she's regaining her strength. I have a feeling she is going to die, though, and there's about a 50% chance (or more) for any character to die, so I'm feeling pretty confident.

    I love Arya, and I like Daenerys. When she smiled, I was very happy. Her husband has become her lover (I'm hoping for more "lessons" too, but I don't think that's going to happen), maybe they can establish some sort of respect, some sort of friendship?... One must hope.

    Eddard Stark once again proves himself the realistic, honorable man of the kingdom, too good to live, I'm sure.
  • The Kingsroad

    The Good:

    -"Death is so final, whereas full of possibilities."

    -Lady Catelyn defends Bran. The maternal instinct is clearly very strong within her.

    -The confrontation between Arya, Sansa, and Joffrey. The little Prince's true colors are shown and the stark (pun intended) differences between the two girls are revealed.

    The Bad:

    -It still feels like stories are being set up until the end of the episode. The fight with the girls and Catelyn's dagger dance are both gripping moments, but otherwise much of "The Kingsroad" feels like establishment.
  • Joffrey must die.


    When I first watched this episode, which was before I read the books, I was lost. The first episode threw in some minor details of the Nights Watch and Daenerys Targeryan, and the second episode does the opposite; at least in the opening half hour. It concentrates the larger share of screen time to Jon Snow; the bastard child of Ned Stark shunned by his step mother Catelyn. This scene was effective; you would think with all the kindness that Catelyn has shown beforehand, she would have the heart to find it in her to overlook a mistake her husband has made seventeen years ago. And yet that has not happened; she still holds resentment to the situation and to Jon Snow. The episode did a great job of developing Jon's character; as I have been told as a storyteller, ambitious characters who show a want for something are what hooks readers and writers alike, and here we are shown a Jon Snow that has a strong desire to join the Nights Watch. And to throw ruffles into the stream, the sarcastic Tyrion Lannister exposes Jon Snow to the "honorable" brotherhood he may have mistakenly joined. Even prior to reading the books, I've always enjoyed the character of Jon Snow more than any of the Starks.On the flip side, the poor exiled Princess is forced to give up her womanhood to a beastly man that doesn't share her language. Though her tune suddenly changes by acquiring the help of her servants in the art of love. There isn't much story that can be derived on the land past the sea as of yet, I'd say that Daenerys' actress does a good job as anyone at appearing of not enjoying sex.

    The main issue, with Ned Stark and her two daughters, didn't pick up until the inn with the kings road where Joffrey firmly establishes himself as the antagonist of the show, not just through his actions that occur with the Butcher Boy's kid and brandished lies to his mother, but by his impudent little wretched face. Though without a convincing acting job, that hatred for a fictional character could never be born. Reading the books I could say that I hate Joffrey more in the show than in its source material. And although naturally some important details are lost from the conversion from book to TV that happen in the dialogue in the head of the characters, this episode was more emotional with the deaths of Lady and Mycah. Although the character development with Jon Snow and Daenerys Targreyan opened the episode up well, the first half felt slow and confusing with the episode spreading its minutes thin amongst a large cast of characters. Nonetheless it finishes strong and seeds everyone's thirst to see the vagina that is Joffrey die a horrible death.

  • The Kingsroad

    The Kingsroad was a really superb episode of Game of Thrones. I enjoyed watching this very entertaining episode very much. I like how each of the Stark children had a Dire Wolf. It was sad to see what happend to Lady in place of her sibling. Though I have never read the books I really enjoyed the drama, intrigue, charachter and plot development. This series is really in depth and has a lot of detail and a unique quality which makes it stand out. It was great to see how the various story lines are progressing. I look forward to watching the next episode of Game of Thrones!!!!!!!
  • The Fall

    As Bran lies in bed following his fall thanks to the hands of Jaime Lannister and Cersei as Eddard heads to King's Landing with the King and learns of the threat of the Targaryan's across the sea. Daenerys learns a trick or two to please her new husband in bed and to not be a subjective slave to him. Sansa's loyalty may come into jeopardy when an incident involving her crush Prince Jeoffrey, Arya a wolf and another boy begs her to make a choice regarding her sister or her love interest that really captures the teenage phase of a teenager. Jon Snow travels to Castle Black in hopes of becoming part of the Night's Watch and learns that the role may not be as prestigious as he previously thought it. This episode was predominantly about travelling and the characters finding their own paths. Extra thing, good on Catherine Stark for fighting like hell to stay alive, it takes guts to clench a knife like that for so long in defense of one's own life. This is shaping up to be an interesting series, and as the King said: a war is approaching but the fighting parties and the terrain of the event are as yet unknown.
  • For those of you who haven't read the original books, I just want to let you know that you should stick with it, because you are in for a great ride!

    For those of you who haven't read the original books, it must indeed be daunting to keep track of who is related to whom and what all is going on, but please believe me, as someone who has read the books, more than once, this is a heartwarmingly faithful adaptation of a very, very complex tale.

    At several moments in "The Kingsroad" I actually called out "Yes! Exactly!" as certain key scenes came across the screen: the assassin and the direwolf, the prince and the butcher's boy, the conversation with the dwarf on the way to the wall, the conversation between the two old friends, and the new bride coming into her own. All of it important to the tale, and all of it just how I pictured it. (Although personally I would have switched the actors playing Jon Snow and Robb Stark, but that is just me.)

    If you like this series, do yourself a favour and read the books. Unlike those who discovered Lord of the Rings in a visual form before the written one, you won't be disappointed or wondering why certain scenes from the movies (that never occurred in the books) weren't in the books. This is as true to the original as it could be.

    Kudos to George R. R. Martin for seeing his beautiful work come alive in such an honest and uplifting manner. I can barely wait for the next episode, and believe me when you know what is coming, the anticipation is sooooo much better!
  • Ned Stark is forced to deal with drama within the family, while Daenerys learns how to deal with Khal Drago, her new husband.

    I'd like to preface the review by apologizing if I get the names wrong with the characters.. I really think the worst part about the show is the fact that there's very little explanation or moments where us non-readers of the series have a chance to figure out who is who here.. we have to sort of figure it out for ourselves or just look it up online. However, that being said, this episode left the pilot in the dust; there was plenty of plot development, and I was glad that everything sort of slowed down for a bit so we could get used to these characters and get to know them better.. it also gave the show a chance to truly ramp up the tension. The final fifteen minutes of the show were as good as anything I've seen this year on TV.

    The episode splits into three pieces here, sometimes four.. we get Ned Stark and Robert Bartheon beginning to make their way back to King's Landing to begin their time away from their family. Meanwhile, back in Winterfall, Catelyn Stark tends to Bran after his fall while the rest of the Stark family deals with their own fair share of issues. Sansa learns that Geoffrey, the son of Robert and Cersei Bartheon, is actually a giant jerk, especially after he teases a poor kid from the town and ends up getting his butt kicked by Arya. This plot interested me the most; the show proved how great it can be at suspense by having Robert and Ned face each other, with their children arguing, and having Cersei order one of the dogs to be killed.

    Mixed in with all of this is somebody sneaking into Winterfall to kill Bran, who ends up getting defended by another of his Dire Wolves. We also find Cersei and her brother Jaime considering whether or not they should get rid of Bran. These two characters have an extremely strange relationship, and I'm glad the show is willing to go down this road and give us something so weird to follow. Depending on how they write it, the plot could pay huge dividends down the line.

    We're also starting to get a better look at how all of these plots connect. I thought that the plot involving Daenerys, her insane brother and the Dothroki was random compared to the other stuff going on, but as it turns out, their father was once the King of King's Landing but was overthrown by Robert Bartheon and the Lannisters since he was completely insane. As a result, the marriage of Daenerys to the Dothroki King is a way of getting an army to get the throne back. I definitely can see a giant battle between these two groups in the near future, but right now, it feels a bit random.

    We also get Jon Snow, Ned's other son, heading to the Wall with Tyrion (who is played with great fervor and humor by Peter Dinklage.. he may be the best actor in this show) and his Uncle. He's to train for to be a part of the Nightswatch, and whereas I thought this was a pointless plot in the first episode, I'm slowly starting to come around to it. It should be interesting to see how all of these characters grow over time.

    I apologize if this seems like a rambling review, but there's just so much going on that it's difficult to comment on. I will say this about it: it was a much better episode than the Pilot, an episode I greatly over-rated. At least here, we had a few moments to slow down and really focus on the story.
  • Have I mentioned how much I love the opening title sequence? Because it is just fantastic. There has been much speculation...

    Have I mentioned how much I love the opening title sequence? Because it is just fantastic. There has been much speculation circling the internet saying that one of the most certain Emmy nominations and hopefully wins will be that title sequence. I certainly have no objection there. On another note, I apologize for last week's review spanning eleven pages. I had a lot to say, and I thought I'd go all out for the pilot. I'll try to keep this one much shorter, and so instead of going scene by scene, I'll just pick through my likes and dislikes. I must say I'm growing tired of Daenerys scenes. The biggest thing that is lacking in her scenes is the one thing that we can never get out of the show, and that is her inner monologue. And so must make do with what we're given in the show. Unfortunately though, her scenes appear to have fallen to the wayside due to inadequate pacing and lackluster dialogue. It just seems to me that something doesn't click for her character. Daenerys is a very important character to the story's progression, but she is also very much a side plot to the main storyline. Because the audience will be very focused on what is happening on Westeros with the Stark family, whenever the camera cuts to Daenerys, there needs to be a certain oomph that is brought to the screen to grab viewers' attention, and explain why we should invest in this subplot. I guess so far it just lacks verve. And what's with the stone dragon egg close-ups every five seconds? We get it; Daenerys put them in candles so she can look at them be pretty. Cool. I did like the next several scenes featuring Tyrion. He is an instantly compelling character, and hopefully appealing to new viewers. He is intriguing and funny, whimsical and serious, all at the same time. I must say though, there was a noticeable lack of music throughout the episode. I think this might have contributed to much of what people were saying when it was suggested that this episode was much slower and more boring than the first one. Music does funny things to people, even if they don't realize it. It makes serious scenes more dramatic. It makes funny scenes more light-hearted, and it makes thrilling scenes more exciting. I think parts of this episode were generally confusing to follow, specifically for new viewers, and this might have been the major player in the 'boredom' that people experienced during this episode. Book-readers know that the exposition is still wrapping up, and that by next episode, events should be much faster paced, and more frequent in nature. Other things that I liked included Catelyn's little Sherlock Holmes adventure, Robert and Ned's dinnertime exchange, and any scene featuring Arya. Maisie Williams is such a strong character actor and makes the character of Arya as wonderful as she was always portrayed in the books. I wasn't a huge fan of the Daenerys scene in which she is being taught how to properly please Kahl Drogo. I once again felt very uncomfortable, and felt that this scene was out of place, as well as the following scene in which they had sex in cowgirl position to the sound of beating drums. I am also generally not a fan of Prince Joffrey actor Jack Gleeson. I think he needs to let the evil come from his playing Joffrey, rather than his playing 'evil.' However, the Arya vs. Joffrey confrontation was splendid, only to be interrupted by Nymeria, Arya's direwolf saving/ruining the day. I'm sure I'll continue to shower Maisie Williams with praise as the series goes on. Lastly, I'm very on the fence about Kit Harrington's (Jon Snow) acting. I am currently indifferent, and I think as his character faces more, I will begin to form my opinion, although, I'd have to say I'm leaning towards him favorably. Thanks for reading, and more to come next week! -Squinty
  • 102

    This was a better episode than the first, and I particularly liked the scenes with the kids fighting. I don't expect that relationship to be explored much more this season, but I certainly would like to see that happening. The vicious dogs were pretty amusing too though.

    I still think that this show is going to have a hard time with people trying to follow all of these characters. I know that I was a bit confused keeping track, although I do have a better idea of what is going on than I did in the pilot last week.

    Okay episode, hopefully the show keeps improving.
  • A large cast of characters can be daunting but the story will drag you in.

    I started reading Game of Thrones MANY years ago as the books were being published, However, because of teh wait between publications I never did read the entire series. As a result, its all vaguely familiar to me but I don't know how it will turn out. Some people may find the number of major roles a bit overwhelming after the first episode but I found that you quickly catch on to the story behind them all. And its a deeply intriguing story of love, lust, loyalty and betrayal. After just two epiosdes we have had a good insight into the nature of many of the major characters.

    The show is visually exciting with a compelling story and goos characters and acting!
  • ♦♣♦ Spoiler-free ♦♣♦ Second hammering to rule the Emmy

    Dead or alive ? The question shameful viewers like me, because we haven't read the novel yet, had in their mind for a week after the pilot tragic events. It was answered right after the fantastic title sequence that smooths the immersion process dramatically. At the start your mind is still thinking about your day but once the episode begins it has entered a medieval realm one can only be reluctant to leave.

    Indeed all parallel stories have potential and despite their slow pace even an impatient wouldn't leave its seat for a second. Indeed on the Stark and Lannister side the boy's accident has unveiled the true nature of some characters like Cersei (Lena Headey), a Queen gnawed by anger, and Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Walday), the white knight a damsel in distress would regret to be rescued by. To tell the truth in Winter is Coming I had no idea they were related because I just couldn't keep up with all the names and locations. But when watching becomes nearly as demanding as reading then you know the adaptation was respectful of its source material. Still even if all these webby connections between players, because chess is a great metaphora of life, are exciting I hope their profiles are not as Manichaean as they seem. Hopefully we should know why some love while others hate. Otherwise I have no doubt about Arya Stark, the little girl vigorously played by Maisie Williams, and her mother Catelyn. Michelle Fairley revealed a palette of extreme emotions that forged her scenes like blades of steel. As for her daughter you really have to see her play with the gift one of her brothers offered her. If it had been Chucky it would have either fall in love with her or worry about its life because when Arya is angry, well she seems as dangerous as an innocent clown piranha about to have its midnight breakfast.

    Juggling is both an entertaining and interesting medieval craft but now the mysterious and worried Daenerys Targaryen has convinced me to throw dragon eggs in the mix. Emilia Clarke gave a seductive performance and I like the way her whiteness contrasts with her tribal husband. Harry Lloyd's appearances as her wicked brother Viserys are rare but percussive. Will he get his crown back ? Will she free herself from him ? In fact does she even want to ? There's almost something mystical about their story and I wonder if she has other resources to survive than her exquisite shapes. But between two shy glimpses at her royal hips I also strongly recommend the audience to pay attention to the dialogs because this time they were heavy on mythology. Where do the dragons come from ? What do the fields represent for the Dothraki people ? Similar questions could also be raised considering the Stark side as some friendly battle between the bastard and the dwarf occurred in the woods. It should even make you question what happened at the very beginning of the pilot even if I have no doubt about it…

    Other gems include the Dothraki language, specially developed for the show – very Tolkienian, an almost sapphic kamasutra lesson – can't wait the next, and an ongoing investigation about the boy's fall. But this short list, compared to the installment diversity and greatness, would be even more incomplete if one word wasn't added : Wolf. Indeed the story was wild every which way. What a thrilling way to use these majestuous and savage hunters ! They actually reminded me of White Fang (Jack London) and I wonder how they see things from their point of view. Wouldn't it be dazzling to actually film a scene from there ? So let's hope the other directors and minds behind the show will surprise us with their creativity. All in all it was an other awards magnet and if the end doesn't electrify you well I don't know what will !
  • Daenerys's wedding night.

    Death comes early for the children of the King's hand as the first of their direwolves gets killed while trying to protect their masters, Sansa's failure to protect her pup lies in her own weakness of character to side with either the Prince or her family.

    After a particularly difficult wedding night, Daenerys takes lessons from her handmaiden in order to seduce her husband, her bedchambers the only place where she can gain control from a man as willing to surrender to her as he is to lead his own army, however, his own reasons for marrying this girl remain a mystery.
  • there's but one word i can describe this episode, and that's perfection because there wasn't one thing that bothered me.

    Ned upon accepting the king's offer rode south with everyone else to be the kingdom's right hand. Jon snow, my favorite character so far i should add, rode to the wall. Jon, I sympathize with the guy. They continue to call him a bastard but i'm happy that he's not letting such trivial things affect his character. He's very brave and also kind. The second person who draws my attention as i'm sure for a lot people too, it's Arya. The litte tomboy strongly wants to follow to be a knight rather than all the women so far in this series who seems to be nothing for pleasure for the men. Which i have to say, it wonders me every time i watch this series: what do the female viewers think about such spectacle and representation of themselves in such degrading way. I feel sorry for Daenerys to be married to guy like Drogo who illustrate quite well the meaning of a savage. He comes naked in front of the woman drags her ass towards himself and then proceed to start pounding without saying a single word at all. That's cold!! Daenerys seems to be getting the hand of it though as we see from her last part of this episode. She might successfully take control over him. Either way, i'm really liking the way this is progressing.

    Returning back to Ned riding south with the king. The little spoiled runt joffrey finally speaks. I knew i was going to hate this guy and i thank him for not disappointing me. I knew this runt would act like he owns everyone around him. His actions caused the life of a young boy and one of the direwolves which i was quite beginning to love by the way. I hope they don't kill more of them anymore. I hope they stay with the starks and protect them just like that other direwolf protected Bran from that assassin who wanted to kill him. Another person i like is the dwarf. He's such an honest and straight-forward kind of guy. I also hope he doesn't die soon enough. I doubt he will since he admitted himself that his intellectual it's his sword rather than an actual sword. So if there was a conflict i would expect him to run from it.

    Anyway beautiful episode and i cannot wait for more.
  • Moving along at a much quicker pace then the pilot, the 'kingsroad' proves to be quite a nice episode indeed.

    The pilot was great, and due to the cliffhanger I was left with high expectations from this episode. It sometimes fulfilled these, but the whole episode had a rather detached feeling and almost felt like filler at times. I personally can't wait until Ned and the King get back to Kings Landing, as the events on the Kingsroad are actually quite boring. Luckily, the events on the other fronts are very interesting. The first part of the episode mainly concludes the events at Winterfell as all the Starks go their own way and also has bits of Daneris on the other continent. The latter parts are a bit boring but a few particular scenes really spice things up ;)

    As Snow is leaving winterfell, his problems with his stepmother are underlined further, before a very touching scene with his father where he asks about his mother. A scene with John and Tirion after this is filled with amazing quotes, and gives us a lot of information without getting too boring. I'm obviously most interested with these two characters and the wall, which we get a second glimpse of in one of the last scenes. Great CGI work there.

    I'm really attached to Bran and his actor already so of course I was really happy that he wasn't dead (which the previews were implying.) The queen and Jamie though, are still trying to get rid of him, and send an assassin to do the job. That all gives us quite an awesome scene where we see some direwolf action.

    The events on the Kingsroad unfold a little slowly, but the child actors really shine through. Sansa's direwolf being killed is sad, but it was her fault for not taking her families side over the prince. A good little lesson there.

    Of the actors: Kit harrington shines out in this episode and shows that he has a bright future ahead of him. Peter Dinklage has some great moments in this episode and Sean Bean is as good as ever. His acting when John asks him about his mother is absolutely brilliant.

    ONce again, HBO has done a good job in keeping viewers interested in the show, as well as subtly giving them more information about the world. Already it shaping up to be a great fantasy series, and we're not even started yet.