Game of Thrones: “Breaker of Chains” Season 4 Episode 3 Review

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Westeros is rocked by the aftermath of the Purple Wedding in this fantastic episode.

The opening scene was a tremendous payoff for Sansa, as the fool Joffrey humiliated leads her out of King’s Landing once and for all. But who orchestrated this whole ordeal? Littlefinger. Not only did he smuggle Sansa out of the city, but he also played a significant role in Joffrey’s murder. Sansa may be out of the city, but is she really safe with Littlefinger? Hell of a way to start an episode.

King’s Landing was a mess for the rest of Breaker of Chains. Most of the Lannisters seem lost in the chaos surrounding Joffrey’s death. That is, except for Tywin, who wisely prepares Cersei’s second son to take the throne and recruits Oberyn to his side (at least for now). Tyrion, on the other hand, is stuck in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. You had to feel some respect for the character when he ordered Podrick to leave King’s Landing and stay out of the trial.

Then there’s Cersei and Jaime. Yikes. Incestual rape next to the dead body of their bastard child. How nice. I’m interested to see where Jaime is going to go now that he seems to have stepped back into the villain circle. I feel nothing but pain for Cersei, which is a true testament to what this show is capable of.

In the North, Castle Black prepares for war. The wildlings have a message for the crows, and they deliver it in the form of a brutal massacre of a small town. But the Nightswatch barely has more than a hundred men. So while Sam’s storyline with the wildling woman and her daughter is still a snooze, tension is building here for a big confrontation in the future.

Meanwhile, Arya and the Hound continue their travels, coming across a family that offers them dinner. Arya pretends that the Hound is her father, leading to some great comedic moments as they sit with this family. But the Hound ruins it, of course. He robs the family and puts the father on his back. Being that we last saw Arya slowly sticking Needle through someone’s neck, it was smart to show her morals still intact, as she berates the Hound for stealing from this family.

Stannis’ army building doesn’t seem to be going too well, but at least Davos is getting better at reading! This storyline is kind of just treading water right now but feels like it’s building to something big. We’ll see.

The episode closed with some outstanding Daenerys stuff as she prepares to liberate the slaves of yet another city.The battle of the champions was cleverly done and totally awesome. But the kicker for this storyline was what Dany’s catapults were filled with. As the barrels slam against the city walls, broken chains fall to the ground. What an epic way to send a message. I really hope Daenerys lives long enough to face the Lannisters.

With so much going on, this episode amazingly didn’t feel rushed. The aftermath of Joffrey’s death was the main focus, but Daenerys, Arya, and Jon Snow all has solid moments that are just building the tension for the season. Breaker of Chains solidified that Game of Thrones isn’t planning on slowing down anytime soon. Grade: A-

By Matt Dougherty

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