Episode 3 of ‘Game of Thrones’ is titled ‘Walk of Punishment,’ and it seems there’s plenty to go around. Whether saying goodbye to a friend or a favorite body part, the punishments at hand are being dealt left and right. Without further ado, let’s get into this episode’s recap!
Against his bannermen’s wishes, Robb Stark has decided to head to his mother Catelyn’s town of Riverrun, where her father is being put to rest in Tully fashion — by being sent downriver in a boat that’s set afire by arrows. The honor of setting the boat ablaze falls to the deceased Hoster Tully’s son, Edmure, but after three flaming arrows miss their mark, Catelyn’s uncle Brynden “Blackfish” steps in, frustrated, to finish the job.
Next, when he should be holding his tongue after the awkward display, Edmure makes the mistake of addressing Robb as “nephew,” rather than “Your Highness,” which Blackfish is quick to point out.
Blackfish does have a softer side, though. As Catelyn sits at the window she used to look out as a girl, waiting for her father’s return, she thinks of how Bran and Rickon might have done the same waiting for her return, and breaks down in sobs. Blackfish comforts her by saying they could still be alive and she must remain strong as Robb is if they’re going to win this war.
Robb’s wife and former nurse, the queen Talisa, takes the time to visit some hostages Edmure took at an otherwise unsuccessful Lannister attack — two young Lannister boys who are far enough removed from the throne to not be very good bargaining chips. She patches them up a bit and shows her motherly side as she jokes that rumors are true and her husband does turn into a wolf, but he doesn’t eat children…unless it’s a full moon. Then, all bets are off.
On The King’s Road
Arya scoffs at Gendry for helping Thoros with his armor when they’re being held captive by him, but Thoros points out there are no chains on her. She asks if she can be free, and he counters by saying it’s not safe for anyone alone on the road, especially a Stark girl.
Thoros and the Brotherhood suit up to leave the inn where they’ve temporarily taken residence, and set off to bring the Hound with them, as well as Arya, Gendry, and Hot Pie. As the Hound is being shoved into a holding vehicle, Arya asks him if he remembers when they were both in this town once before, and he brushes her off. She’s referring to the fact that this is the town where the Hound killed Mycah the butcher’s boy after her disagreement with Joffrey on the way to King’s Landing, and although he’s sure to have forgotten, she doesn’t seem soon to forget.
Right as they’re getting ready to go, Hot Pie tells his friends he’s decided to stay behind and cook at the inn, and he hands Arya a wolf made out of bread that he baked for her. They share a heartfelt goodbye, and people watching the show with their friends try not to make eye contact with each other for a bit.
North of the Wall
Inside an eagle’s eyes, Orell the warg saw many of Jon Snow’s former brothers dead at the Fist of the First Men, but once Mance Rayder and his wildlings arrive, all they see are cut-up horses arranged into a creepy spiral pattern. With no dead bodies around, Mance and company assume they’ve all been turned into White Walkers. Jon asks if there could have been survivors, which might raise suspicion, since if he truly cared about them, he would be a traitor. Seeing the armies of White Walkers this far south and close to the wall can only mean one thing. The kingdoms are in grave danger, and it’s time for the wildlings to storm the Wall and claim it as their own stronghold.
The survivors — those that haven’t been turned into Ice Zombies — return to Craster’s Keep, the disgusting house where a lone old man builds his family by “marrying” his daughters and granddaughters. We learned last season that whenever one of his “wives” gives birth to a boy, that boy is left outside to die, which is a sort of gift to the White Walkers who, in turn, do not attack his stronghold.
During a tense dinner, Samwell Tarly storms off after hearing enough of the old man, and follows the sound of a woman in childbirth. He discovers it’s Gilly, a woman he fancied when they last passed through, and unfortunately, she’s given birth to a boy.
Somewhere in Stark Territory
True to his word, the mysterious stranger sent by Yara Greyjoy rescues Theon from his X-shaped torture device — presumably of Bolton origin — and helps him to his horse, instructing him to travel due east. After a day’s worth of riding, Theon looks around for whoever is to intercept him and is instead almost intercepted by an arrow. It seems his captors have been tailing him from the start.
After a fierce chase through the woods, Theon falls from his horse, and his pursuers attempt to get to know him better, biblically. Right in the nick of time, however, the mysterious stranger who freed Theon re-appears and kills the captors with a bow and arrow — at point-blank range for the main attempted rapist. Audiences at home cheer.
King Stannis begs Melissandre not to leave, and various audience members mutter a whip-crack sound under their breath. He tells her his enemies are laughing at him and worries she’s leaving for good. Melissandre reminds him that she’s sworn to protect him, but the Lord of Light is calling her elsewhere for the moment, and leaves him with the forboding advice that if he wants to gather strength, he should maybe sacrifice someone else with king’s blood running through their veins.
Daenerys strolls down Astapor’s infamous “Walk of Punishment” — where disobedient slaves are publicly crucified and left to die. She offers one a drink of water, and he refuses to accept it. Along the walk, her now-two trusted advisors recommend her next course of action. Jorah Mormont recommends she buys the Unsullied slaves, since she needs an army, and she would be giving them a better life than any they’d have here. Barristan Selmy counters with the fact that when her brother Rhaegar, the last of the dragon line, fought his battles, his armies did so because they loved him and believed in him as a ruler; not because they were bound to. Jorah points out that Rhaegar still died. Daenerys points out that Rhaegar wasn’t the last of the dragon line; she is.
Having made up her mind, Daenerys faces the slaver Kraznys and says she would like to purchase all 8,000 Unsullied he has for sale, as well as those still in training. Using the slave Missendei as a translator, Kraznys mutters rude comments about her intelligence and looks (in High Valyrian), but in general, laughs at the fact that she could maybe afford 200 if she gave them everything she had. Daenerys counters with the fact that she has three dragons, and she will give him one.
At King’s Landing
A mini Game of Thrones — er, Small Council Chairs — is played while each of the sniveling councilors vy for the coveted space closest to Tywin Lannister, while Tyrion cockily drags a chair to the opposite end of the table — humorously further from Cercei and Tywin, while still being in a position of power. Littlefinger’s departure to the Eyrie, where he will marry Lysa Arryn, leaves the position of Master of Coin open, which Tywin grants to Tyrion. Later, while going through the books, Tyrion discovers that the way King’s Landing always seemed to have money was that they’re millions in debt to the Iron Bank in Braavos.
Having never properly thanked his squire Pod for saving his life at Blackwater Bay, Tyrion decides to buy him his first three whores from Littlefinger’s harem. Hours later, young Podrick returns with the gold Tyrion left, and it seems he was so good a lover, the ladies of the night simply refused payment. Bronn and Tyrion swarm him with goblets of wine for every detail.
The Adventures of Brienne and Jaime continue, and they’re both tied up on the way to Bolton’s camp to decide what is to be done with them. Jaime warns Brienne that once they’ve stopped, the Bolton men are likely to try to rape her. Although it goes against everything the audience wants to hear, he advises her to go along with it, because if she struggles or fights back, it will likely lead to her death.
Sure enough, once their captors have made camp, several of the men untie Brienne and drag her into the woods. Jaime informs their leader, Locke, that she is Brienne of Tarth, which is also known as the Sapphire Isle, and if her dignity is kept intact, they’re likely to get an even bigger ransom for her than they would from the Starks. Locke considers this and calls his men off before the deed is done.
Seeing the suggestible nature of his captor, Jaime tries to curry favor for himself, telling Locke that his own father will pay Jaime’s weight in gold for his release. Locke has a turn of heart and unties Jaime from his tree, and walks him to a table to give him a warm meal. Just as the scene seems a little too good to be true, one of his men kicks out the back of Jaime’s knee and they hunch him over the table as he falls. Locke mocks Jaime, telling him he’s nothing without his father, and his father’s not here. He raises a knife and slams it down on Jaime’s wrist, hacking off the Kingslayer’s sword hand.
Comedy, action, danger! ‘Walk of Punishment’ was everything that fans love about the series. Now, let’s not try to think about the fact that there are only 7 more until the long winter between seasons!