(Note: to help clear up the discussion thread congestion, we’re publishing two Game of Thrones recaps this season, one for book readers and one for non-book readers. Doing it this way means those who have read A Storm of Swords and A Feast for Crows don’t have to begin every conversation with “SPOILER,” or those who haven’t won’t need to worry about learning something they shouldn’t.)
Come at the Littlefinger, you best not miss. Or, perhaps more accurately, you best not be standing near a Moon Door. “Mockingbird” was an episode dominated by set-ups — to Brienne and Podrick heading toward the Eyrie, to Oberyn announcing his intention to be Tyrion’s champion, to Daario’s butt (that’s not so much set-up as it a little something something for the ladies, I guess) — but it was a finale that made it a great episode. The finale of Lysa’s life, that is. She took a one-way-ticket out the Moon Door and onto the jagged rocks below, her last image the small outline of Littlefinger above, who can’t even bother to give her one last farewell wave. Why? Because there’s only woman he’s ever loved: “your sister.”
“Why?” is an important question in “Mockingbird,” and for all of Game of Thrones, actually. To paraphrase Rivers Cuomo, Why bother? It’s gonna hurt me, it’s gonna literally kill me when you and your hound-like friend come along to my property and find me bleeding out to death. Everyone has their reason: Littlefinger does it for Cat; Oberyn does it to avenge his sister’s death; Brienne and Pod do it so as not to disappoint their heroes; Dany does it for the slaves (and her tailor, whom we’re forever in debt to, does it for us, the loyal viewer); Arya does it to cross names off her list; and Melisandre does it for baths.
(Now that Theon’s story doesn’t, well, reek so much, Melisandre might be my least favorite character to check in on, especially when Davos, who I love, isn’t around. I’ve never much cared for her mystical nonsense, and unlike Dany, who’s also near the bottom, not because she’s a bad character but because she’s mining well-worn material, Melisandre doesn’t have dragons. That’s a-paddlin’.)
So maybe the question’s not “why?” but “why not?” We find the things worth fighting for, even when no one’s fighting beside us. We fight for love, for honor, for power, for respect, for revenge, for spite, but mostly for gravy. Like a wise Hot Pie once said, you cannot give up on the gravy. Ever.
Let’s fly over to the next page for random observations.