Game of ThronesGame of Thrones Season 4 Ep 7 "Mockingbird": The Meek Shall Inherit NothingGame of Thrones - RSS 2.0
We don't get to spend much time with Jon Snow this week, but what little we do see suggests that the Night's Watch is an organization plunging headfirst into its own destruction.
Among the things Jon Snow continues not to know is the fact that Alliser Thorne, the acting Lord Commander of the Night's Watch, is an inveterate prick more concerned with massaging his own fragile ego than defending the realm. Jon has just returned from his mission to put down the mutineers who killed former Lord Commander Jeor Mormont, and for his troubles he's berated by Thorne for bringing his direwolf, Ghost, into the keep with him.
Thorne is obviously not happy that Jon Snow returned from his suicide mission and is trying to put him in his place. And it almost works. Shortly after, the Night's Watch are meeting to discuss what to do about the threat from the north. Jon Snow insists that they need to close off any and all entrances the invading Wildlings could use to access the Wall. Thorne, still resentful of Jon Snow, wins the defeat of this suggestion by reminding other high ranking members of the watch of Jon's time spent living among the Wildlings.
Thorne has won the argument and his ego is secured, but he's put the Night's Watch in a terrible defensive position. They'll clearly need some help if they're going to survive the impending attack.
Seemingly unrelated, we also spend a few minutes in Dragonstone, home of King Stannis. Stannis is still in transit from Bravos with his enormous loan from the Iron Bank, but his dutiful and supremely religious wife Selyse, as well as his creepy/sexy spiritual advisor Melisandre, are preparing to leave on what is described as a mission of great importance, presumably wherever it is Stannis is headed. Their shared solitude affords the two time for an extremely frank conversation, underscored, it must be said, by Melisandre's casual nudity, which is extremely distracting, but not unwelcome, just for the record.
Selyse is deeply concerned about her daughter, who we last saw expressing serious doubts about The Lord of Light. The Queen would rather leave her at Dragonstone than take her along for the mission, but Melisandre insists they bring her. As part of her pitch, Melisandre reveals to Selyse that a great deal of the "magic" she displays during the worship of The Lord of Light is nothing more than simple parlor tricks. It's a bold admission that appears to shake Selyse's faith, but Melisandre pulls Selyse closer by telling her that she doesn't need tricks. "You can see the truth for yourself, no matter how harsh," Melisandre says. Selyse agrees to bring her daughter along, and appears to be even more devoted than before to the Lord of Light.