Game of Thrones Season 4 recap: dragons, death, family drama

Arya Stark and The Hound are a surprisingly fearsome team as Season 4 of
Arya Stark and The Hound are a surprisingly fearsome team as Season 4 of "Game of Thrones" begins. Photo: HBO

SAN DIEGO, April 6, 2014 – Fans of HBO’s “Game of Thrones” waited ten months and their patience was rewarded on Sunday with the Season 4 debut episode “Two Swords.”

Sex? Check. Violence? Double check. Adult language? Of course. Fans even got a sexposition scene with everyone’s favorite new character, Prince Oberyn Martell, played by the very easy on the eyes Spanish actor Pedro Pascal.

Picking up where the Red Wedding and the liberation of Yunkai’s slaves by The Mother of Dragons left off, we see many challenges for our major characters. Several stepped forward on Sunday and we can expect their storylines to be prominent this season.

The Lannisters are getting ready to stage their own big wedding between Joffrey and Margaery. Numerous storylines are converging in King’s Landing as people arrive for the royal nuptials. Tywin Lannister intends to demonstrate the family’s hold on the kingdom through its show of wealth and power at the wedding. Margaery and her grandmother Olenna know what they’re getting into and they seem quite clear about the family they are marrying into.

Prince Oberyn comes to King’s Landing from Dorne for the wedding. The Dornish don’t have much love for the Lannisters, since Tywin had Gregor Clegane (AKA The Mountain) rape and kill Princess Elia Martel, Oberyn’s sister, who was married to the last Targaryen prince, as well as her children. Will he let bygones by bygones? This is Game of Thrones, don’t count on it. Meanwhile, Oberyn seems in a partying mood, and is a man of varied tastes when it comes to the bedroom.

Also back in time for his nephew’s wedding is Jaime Lannister, who doesn’t get a warm welcome from Cersei. It’s not proving easy to adjust to life back with his troublesome relatives. Lucky for him he has Brienne to talk with.

Tyrion Lannister is also adjusting to a new life with his newlywed bride, Sansa Stark. His lover Shae doesn’t much like it. She is now Sansa’s handmaiden. Trouble is written all over this arrangement, and the walls have ears in King’s Landing. Still, Sansa is a lot better off with Tyrion than Joffrey.

The heir to the Iron Throne, Danaerys Targaryen, should be making more progress toward King’s Landing with her Unsullied army. Having freed the slaves in Astapor and Yunkai, she doesn’t want to stop there. She’s heading for Meereen, and she’s not welcome there as the corpses along the road make clear. But she is determined, and she has dragons. Those dragons are a whole lot bigger, hungrier, and harder to control since we last saw them. We get to see two of them squabbling over a dead BBQ goat snack.

For those wondering why Daario Nahari looked a little unfamiliar, he’s being played by a new actor this season, Michiel Huisman. He was last on the HBO series “Treme.”

After the Red Wedding, Arya Stark and The Hound are back on the road, and they’ve got a bad attitude. As Shakespeare wrote in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “though she be little, she is fierce.” After seeing her brother and mother killed at the Red Wedding, you can’t blame Arya. The Hound has decided to take Arya to her aunt Lysa, Catelyn’s sister, and get his ransom money. The pair get into a tangle with bad guys at an inn, including the man who stole Arya’s sword Needle. By the end of the episode, she’s got it back and gets a horse to ride in the bargain.

Jon Snow has recovered from his wildling girlfriend Ygritte trying to kill him, and he’s trying to convince the men of the Night’s Watch that a serious threat is coming for them from north of the Wall. They aren’t too receptive to his warning. They’re more concerned he’s a turncoat after his time with Mance Rayder and his crew.

Game of Thrones returns with Episode 2 of Season 4, “The Lion and The Rose,” on Sunday, April 13, at 9 p.m. Eastern Time on HBO East and HBO Latino East (with Spanish subtitles); followed by airings on HBO West and Latino West at 9 p.m. Pacific Time. All four channels repeat the episode through the evening.

For more details, visit the official website at 

Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is also a serious boxing fan covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Media Migraine and Ringside Seat in Communities Digital News. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego. Gayle can be reached via Google +

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