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Week by Week TV: Game of Thrones Season 7, Episode 3

Game of Thrones is the adaptation of George R.R. Martin’s series of books A Song of Ice and Fire. The series is a medieval struggle between noble families for the Iron Throne, sets in the fictional lands of Westeros and Essos. First aired in 2011, the show’s seventh season is now underway.

This is part of a continuing series review. Click to read the reviews of Episode One and Episode Two.

Lena Headey is brilliant as Cersei Lannister. Unapologetically brutal and terribly clever, she manages to be stylish and elegant while she slaughters her enemies. Although she seems to be unmoved by Tommen’s suicide, she definitely shows her pain at the death of Myrcella who was poisioned by Ellaria Sand. This week Cersei’s brutal brand of justice was delivered severely on Ellaria. In the meantime, she outsmarts her brother Tyrion, thwarting all of his plans of conquest whilst also managing to replenish the treasuries of King’s Landing. Season 7 is clearly her time to shine, and her charisma, paired with the brutality of Euron Greyjoy and the rejuvenated fierceness of Jamie Lannister, has given Game of Thrones the drama and action that it has been missing. However, I am afraid that she might not last long as Queen of the Seven Kingdoms, as the short reigns of the past rulers suggest.

In the North, Sansa is making her first steps as Queen of the North, proving that she is sensible and organised whilst also having more self-belief than ever before. She is perfectly in control of Littlefinger, refusing to be drawn in by him but still considering him a useful resource. After her reunion with her brother Bran she realised how vital her strength as a ruler is for the North as he is clearly not able to deal with the duty. As Jon Snow is evidently very reluctant to lead, Sansa might be the last serious chance for the North. However, I still hope for another family reunion with Arya and then a joined leadership of the two.

After several episodes where Daenerys has not faced substantial difficulties in her path towards power, she is now facing a series of slumps, first and foremost in convincing a reluctant Jon Snow to become her ally. Daenerys is clearly frustrated, trapped between the wisdom of her counsellors, leaning towards passive strategies, and her impulsiveness that would lead her towards more brutal choices of behaviour. Her meeting with Jon Snow illustrates how she is more used to letting her actions speak for her. However, Daenerys proves to be wise by letting him extract the dragon glass that he wanted, and gains a small amount of his trust.

In the beginning, I was entertained by the informal reunion of the “Bastard of Winterfell” and the “Dwarf of Casterly Rock”, rejoicing at the wit of Tyrion Lannister that has been rare in the last few episodes. Surprisingly, Sansa proves to be shockingly sarcastic after mocking Littlefinger for reminding her that Cersei, the murderer of half of her family, might be dangerous. And, finally, I really enjoyed the final conversation between Lady Olenna and Jamie Lannister, where she plays her last royal act by informing the latter that she was the mastermind behind Joffrey’s assassination, retaining her superiority to the last.

Overall, this episode has been the most entertaining so far as the plot took several unpredictable turns, alongside engaging dialogue that keeps our eyes glued to the screen. The assault on Dorne by Jamie Lannister was thrillingly unexpected. I can only hope that this high level of quality will be maintained throughout the rest of the season.

Game of Thrones Season 7 airs on Sky Atlantic every Monday at 2am and 9pm in the UK. Image source: Polygon.com