Game of Thrones

Season 1 Episode 7

You Win or You Die

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM May 29, 2011 on HBO

Episode Fan Reviews (13)

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  • The game of thrones begins to heat up. (There's some spoilers here, just to warn.)

    "Game of Thrones" has really surprised me. Sure, there's a lot of long dialogue driven scenes and episodes that are sometimes not as intense as one would hope. However, the last few episodes have absolutely proven that it's a show that knows one hundred percent how to tell a story, make anearly every character equally interesting and raise the stakes when it needs to be done. This episode, leaving us with three left until the finale, takes just about every plot and complicates them, but not too much to confuse or buden us. Instead, it's just some good old dramatic storytelling with only a few missteps.

    The situation in the King's Landing grows even more dire after King Robert Baratheon is gored by a boar and ends up dead by episode's end. The problem is, Joffrey would technically be the next to replace him, and as we learned last week, he's a Lannister, not a Baratheon, This means, just as cersei and Jaime originally wanted, the Lannister family would be in charge of the throne. And finally, the Targarian/King's Landing plots are dangerously close to colliding, something I've been waiting for for awhile. Baratheon's attempt to assassinate Daenerys fails, which puts Khal Drogo in a state of fury as he agrees to finally cross the narrow sea in order to attack Baratheon and take back the throne for Daenerys. This puts Westeros and the West on a path to chaos. It's also important to remember that Tywin Lannister, father of Cersei, Jaime and Tyrion, has a thirst for the throne. If there's any episode that perfectly encapsulates the idea of men and women competing in a "game" for the throne, it's this one.

    We also get, after a two episodes absence, the return of Jon Snow. I was a fan of this plot for the first four episodes and the absence was noticeable and unfortunate. However, its return was also a bit lackluster. Sure, it's intriguing that benjin has gone missing and that Jon was cast as a squire instead of a ranger (we get some funny lines here as well), but I'm still waiting for all that pent-up chaos of the first ten minutes of the premiere to pay off. Remember those zombie/vampire creatures from the premiere? I'm waiting for a reappearance.

    And I also feel like the show make a misstep in killing off Baratheon off-screen. Mark Addy did a great job in the role, so why is his character being given such low-key death? They could've handled it a bit better, despite the repercussions of it being awesome.

    The next episode brings author George R.R Martin's first writtten episode. It should be interesting to see what he does with his own work.
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