Last week we saw the future laid out — and this week, all hell let loose.
The Sons of the Harpy was driven by swords, spears, whips, chains and rebellion, and ended with a heroic, tragic death.
Power is falling into the wrong hands — and despite the best intentions of the key players to avoid it, war is looking more and more likely.
Here's what we learned this week:
1. Tyrion is on his way to meet Daenerys. He can be imprisoned in the Eyrie, wounded in battle, accused of treason and sentenced to death, but Tyrion Lannister will always be saved by his wits. He's too smart for his own good. It took less than five minutes for him to work out who Jorah Mormont was and what had happened — and even less time to warn Jorah that his little kidnapping mission could end badly for him. Tyrion might have been knocked out by the disgraced knight as a result, but he's off to meet the Mother of Dragons now, and I dare say he'll be able to use those same wits to save himself from becoming dragon food.
2. Jaime and Bronn are the new Arya and the Hound. After Arya left the Hound to die near the Eyrie, the show lost one of its funniest double acts — and while Tyrion and Varys tried, they were separated too quickly to fill the slot. Cue Jaime and Bronn, whose mission to Dorne provided some of the most entertaining scenes this week. From Jaime's face when Bronn offered him a breakfast of snake on a stick, to Bronn's quip about the fallen rider being 'slow enough' for Jaime to take on, the fact that they almost died there and then was easily forgotten because their bromance was so damn watchable. Jaime's realisation that he could defend himself with his gold hand was a great moment too.
3. The Faith Militant has taken control of King's Landing. Cersei, what have you done?! For a bare-footed humble bloke, the High Sparrow doesn't half have some dodgy followers, including newly-branded Lancel Lannister. And if he decides to spill the secrets of Cersei's love life, they might be after her too. When she told the High Sparrow about 'a great sinner in our very midst' my heart was in my mouth.
So now the Faith Militant are smashing ale barrels (not the ale!), destroying businesses, beating prostitutes and brothel frequenters alike, with King's soldiers turning a blind eye. Their piece de resistance this week was the arrest of Loras Tyrell — what will they do to him?
4. Cersei got game. After her bitch fest with Margaery last week, and the realisation that she's now powerless as the Queen Mother, Cersei decided to claw back some control this week. First she shipped off Lord Tyrell, Margaery's dad, to the Iron Bank with Meryn Trant (anyone else think he might not come back?), then she gave the Faith Militant permission to effectively take over. Her strategy seems to be to cause enough chaos in King's Landing for Tommen to look to her for guidance — and the small council is getting smaller by the minute. She's planting the seeds for her return to power.
5. Tommen has no power. Ah, Tommen. Did you really think your life was going to be all ceremonies and funtimes with Margaery? The honeymoon is well and truly over, and the poor baby King can't quite understand why. He is in way above his head, refusing to use violence to stop the Faith Militant (despite the fact it's the only language they seem to use) and earlier, pitifully asking Cersei if he could 'tell Margaery that you'll have Sir Loras released'. Cersei is refusing to take any responsibility for the religious militia, and Margaery has left him to 'be with her family'.
And if that's not enough for him to worry his pretty little head about, the people of King's Landing don't seem to like him much. The cries of 'abomination' and 'monster' suggest that Jaime and Cersei's secret is out — a secret which could lose Tommen his crown.
6. Jon is struggling. Also dealing with the struggles of leadership this week was Jon, who had to sign countless appeals for men to be sent to the Watch — including one to Roose Bolton. He may have sworn to stay out of the war, but he's still haunted by what happened to his brother.
To make matters worse, he also seems to have a never ending queue of people outside his door waiting to convince him to join Stannis' war effort. The latest was Melisandre, who took a different approach to Stannis and Davros by... getting naked. We know Jon has a weaknesss for redheads — but the Red Priestess' seduction was too much for him, as he still loves Ygritte. Poor Jon. We also learned Melissandre doesn't take rejection well: "You know nothing, Jon Snow," were her parting words. Ouch.
7. Stannis showed a softer side. He's not all Wildling burnings and curt nods at executions, you know. Sweet little Shireen got some much needed fatherly love this week, as Daddy told her the touching story of how he fought for her to survive the Greyscale she was cursed with as a baby. It was a lovely moment, and a stark contrast to the Lannister concept of fatherly love, where being a dwarf earns you nothing but your father's hatred and ends up with son shooting dad with a crossbow while he's on the loo.
My hatred of Selyse Baratheon is growing week by week too — her simpering about how she should have given Stannis a son and then Shireen's admission that her mother told her she didn't want her with them made me rage.
8. Ellaria wants war. While Jaime's plan is to sneak into Dorne, kidnap his daughter (or niece, depending on who's listening) and return victoriously to Cersei, Ellaria Sand wants all-out war with the Lannisters to avenge Prince Oberyn's death. Having had no luck convincing Doran Martell to take action, she turns to Oberyn's daughters: Obara, Nymeria (like Arya's direwolf) and Tyene. They've already captured the sea captain that delivered Jaime and Bronn to Dorne, buried him up to his neck and covered him in scorpions, so it's hardly surprising when all three agree to follow their mother into war. Was there any need to chuck that spear, though?
9. The Sons of the Harpy attacked. The juxtaposition of the Sons of the Harpy preparing to attack as Daenerys once more refused to reopen the fighting pits in Yunkai, despite 'tradition', was superb. And will somebody please clock on to that prostitute who's leading poor Unsullied men to their deaths? Talk about crocodile tears. In the end, it came down to a narrow passageway, huge casualties on both sides, and Grey Worm mortally wounded. How will Daenerys protect herself without the Unsullied? Are there any left? Will she regain control of Meereen or is this the beginning of the end?
10. RIP Barristan Selmy. The saddest loss in the entire battle was that of brave knight Barristan Selmy, who, of course, had to share a sentimental moment with Daenerys before he went off and got himself killed. "Go Ser Barristan, sing a song for me." Sob. Full credit to him though, he turned up and effectively saved Grey Worm's life, single-handedly taking down a good number of the Sons before he fell. After Jorah Mormont's fall from grace, Barristan was the voice of reason in Daenerys' council, and he will be missed.
Bonus point: Petyr is still a creep. If you didn't retch a bit when he kissed Sansa goodbye, you have a stronger stomach than me. Lord Baelish (who seems to have settled on an Irish accent, after weeks of Welsh/English/Irish mash-ups) is off to King's Landing and has left Sansa to get to know her new fiance. Good luck Sansa.
A dramatic end to episode four — and this season is certainly shaping up to be more nail-biting than season four. While season four did a lot of scene-setting and foreshadowing, season five has been action-packed so far — let's hope it continues that way.
What did you make of this week's installment? Comment below.