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Game of Thrones: Check and Mate

The Queen and King make their moves.

The Queen and King make their moves.

There was a lot to like in this week’s episode of Game of Thrones titled “The Climb.” Especially the game of human chess and one-upmanship played with delight by Lady Olenna (The Queen of Thorns), and Tywin Lannister.

What fun veteran actors Diana Rigg and Charles Dance had with a round of “Your family is more depraved than mine!”

At first it looked like Tywin might get outplayed, even though the sharp Lady never mentioned her digestive issues. (Ms. Rigg, I think you have a future as an Activia spokesman, with a special limited edition Queen of Thorns “Fig” flavor.)

The verbal marriage spar began with Lady O moving her pawn in a “Cersei’s too old to have an heir” gambit. But Tywin countered with his knight — Loras’ homosexual activities. Unfazed, Lady O countered back with her knight, acknowledging Loras was “a sword swallower through and through,” and that two boys having a go at each other beneath the sheets was far more “natural” than “brothers and sisters” doing the same.  It looked like she had him there.

But Tywin had one more move, he castled. If Lady O didn’t consent to the marriage, he would throw Loras into the Kingsguard and he would never be allowed to marry or have an heir.

Check and mate Sir Tywin. And oh those poor betrothed mates — Cersei and Loras, and Tyrion and Sansa.

“It’s a rare enough thing, a man who lives up to his reputation,” the defeated Lady said graciously to the Grand Master.

Can’t wait to see everyone’s next move.

The most meaningful quote of this episode came from Littlefinger, who succinctly described what every character in Game of Thrones is going through be it physical or emotional.

Chaos isn’t a pit. Chaos is a ladder. Many who try to climb it fail, never get to try again. The fall breaks them. Some are given a chance to climb, but they refuse. They cling to the realm, or the gods, or love. Illusions. Only the ladder is real. The climb is all there is.


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