Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones Season 4 Ep 7 "Mockingbird": The Meek Shall Inherit Nothing

Ross Lincoln | 20 May 2014 10:30
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Cut to Ser Gregor Clegane, AKA The Mountain, now played by Icelandic bodybuilder Hafþór Júlíus "Thor" Björnsson. Our first glimpse of the brother-torturer and murder/rapist is appropriately gruesome: he's gleefully killing several - I think - condemned criminals with such visceral detail that we actually see one of his victim's intestines spill out onto the ground. Cersei then enters the scene. Strolling over entrails and corpses with less concern than if she were walking over a mud puddle, she matter-of-factly confirms the Mountain's willingness to fight as her champion, and we now know how dire Tyrion's situation really is.

In the opening scene, Jaime tells Tyrion that he's "the only friend you've got left," and that turns out to be horribly true when Tyrion's right-hand thug Bronn finally deigns to visit him after several weeks of silence. Cersei, doing everything she can to ensure no champion will stand for Tyrion, has won Bronn over with a huge amount of money and marriage to a young noblewoman whose older sister, Bronn boasts, is soon to meet an untimely end, putting him firmly in charge of her family and their money.

Thus Bronn won't be fighting for Tyrion. The two manage to part as friends however, when Bronn offers his condolences and a half-hearted apology for being precisely the person he told Tyrion he was all those years ago when they first began their partnership. "Why are you sorry?", Tyrion asks. "Because you're an evil bastard with no conscience and no heart? That's what I liked about you in the first place." At least some things in Westeros remain consistent, and Tyrion, despite his increasingly desperate situation, appears to appreciate that.

Fortunately for Tyrion, The Mountain's past crimes are still a sticking point for a lot of people, especially people of Dornish extraction.

Late one night, Oberyn Martell pays Tyrion a visit. He tells Tyrion how, when Tyrion was still an infant, he, Oberyn, had heard stories far and wide about the deformed monster child of the Lannisters, with red eyes, malformed arms, and a tail. During a visit to Casterly Rock, he met a then-teenaged Cersei who, so Oberyn tells Tyrion, spent days blaming Tyrion for the death of their mother. She eventually took Oberyn to see the infant, but much to Oberyn's "disappointment," it turns out Tyrion was a normal looking infant.

Oberyn reveals that Cersei had brutally tortured Tyrion as an infant, at one point even trying to pinch his penis off, and suddenly it's clear he's telling Tyrion that he knows her for the villain she is. And then he reminds him of something else: Oberyn didn't just come to Westeros to have orgies in Littlefinger's brothel. He's there to seek justice for the rape and murder of his sister and her children by ... wait for it ... The Mountain.

With that, Oberyn has acknowledged that Tyrion is as much a victim of Lannister machinations as his sister and her children were. "I want to bring all of those who have wronged me to justice," he tells Tyrion. "And all of those who have wronged me are right here." And with that, he promises a clearly moved Tyrion that he'll be his champion against The Mountain.

The sound you hear is millions of viewers pretending not to be choked up. It's a fantastic moment, and one can almost believe Tyrion's fortunes are about to change for the better. Will they? Does HBO have an aversion to gratuitous nudity?

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