Game of Thrones Recap: Bear With Me

Game of Thrones Season 3 RecapIn this week’s Game of Thrones, Khaleesi puts a slave trader on notice, Shae puts Tyrion in the hurt locker, Robb puts a Prince (or Princess) in the North in Talisa and Tywin puts Joffrey in his place. Oh, and Brienne fights a bear. (That last part doesn’t fit the whole mojo I had going earlier but is noteworthy, nevertheless.) Let’s review what took place in “The Bear and the Maiden Fair.”

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HOUSE STARK: BUN-IN-THE-OVEN EDITION | Catelyn is anxious that Robb’s trip to suck up to Walder Frey is on a rain delay; the prickly Frey patriarch, she says, will take their lateness as a slight. Robb’s not as bothered, perhaps because it means he has extra time to hit the furs with a very nude Lady Talisa, who stays that way as she writes a letter to her mother. (Why the heck not? If my birthday suit were couture like hers, I’d wear it as much possible, too.) She casually mentions that Mama Maegyr would love to meet Robb “and her grandchild.” Yep, the Queen in the North is expecting; Robb’s reaction is part cute (such a happy smile!), part serious (such a fervent declaration of love!) and part hot (such a short rebound time before he’s on top of her again!).

HOUSE STARK: HOUND-FOUND EDITION | Arya gives Beric and his band the silent treatment for handing off Gendry to Melisandre, but she pipes up when she realizes the brotherhood is taking off to intercept a Lannister raiding party to the south… and Riverrun is to the west. Angry that her reunion with her family will be delayed – and probably fearing it will never happen at all – Arya sets off into the night on her own… and runs smack into the Hound. Oops.

Meanwhile, far away, Gendry and Melisandre sail into Blackwater Bay amid the detritus from last season’s battle. As he dazedly gazes around, she shares some of her backstory (she and her mother were slaves until the Lord of Light “lifted” them up, whatever that means) and then rocks his world when she reveals he’s Robert Baratheon’s bastard son. “There’s power in a king’s blood,” she purrs. I fear she means that literally.

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HOUSE LANNISTER: DAMNED-IF-YOU-‘I-DO’ EDITION | Bronn listens as Tyrion laments his forced engagement, but the sellsword has little sympathy. Know who’s got even less? Shae – who rejects Tyrion’s consolation gift of gold chain necklaces and his assertion that marrying Ned Stark’s daughter is a matter of “duty, not desire.” He talks about a future where he can set her up comfortably and make sure that any children they have are cared for and protected – and he seems truly upset when she says she wants none of it. “I am your whore,” she states in a tone that makes him wince. When he eventually grows tired of her, she forecasts, “I will be nothing.”

Sansa’s no happier about her impending Lannisterhood, tearfully calling herself a “stupid little girl with stupid dreams who never learns.” (Oh Sansa, you’ve been reading these recaps! I’m touched.) Margaery advises her to look on the bright side: Tyrion is far from the worst Lannister and he’s not bad looking, even with the scar. Lady Stark then realizes she’ll have to sleep with her soon-to-be husband, which unfurls a whole new ripple of dread within her. Margaery assumes she’s afraid of being deflowered, and Sansa gets an aching “oh, honey” from me when she quietly says, “I’m not afraid of the pain after what Joffrey’s done to me.”

Joff’s intended then sees an opportunity for a little girl talk. Women are “very complicated, you know. Pleasing us takes practice,” she says with an air of experience. (Side note: Boy, howdy. Can we somehow get Margaery’s quote emblazoned across the cover of every health-class textbook from here on out? I feel like it would save everyone a lot of fumbling, frustration and friction burns.) Sansa innocently asks if the queen-to-be’s mom filled her in on the finer points of the marriage bed. Margaery’s all, “Yeah, let’s go with that.”

HOUSE LANNISTER: WHO’S-YOUR-GRANDDADDY? EDITION | Joffrey sulkily summons his grandfather to the Iron Throne for an update on what’s happened at the small council meetings. Joff hasn’t been there, you see, because he’s been “busy”: y’know, crossbows to fondle, prostitutes to use as target practice, the usual. In a few sentences, Tywin cows the insolent king into something close to obedience (“You are being consulted at this very moment” was awesome, as was his “Your grace” afterthought) and dismisses the boy’s concerns about rumors of Daenerys’ dragons (“Curiosities on the far side of the world are no threat to us.”)

HOUSE TARGARYEN: WHAT’S-YOURS-IS-MINE EDITION | Speaking of the kickass Khaleesi, Ser Jorah warns against sacking the nearby city of Yunkai. How many slaves does it hold, she asks? At least 200,000, he replies. “Then we have 200,000 reasons to take the city,” she calmly states. Daenerys orders Grey Worm to set up a meeting with one of the city’s slave lords, and damned if there isn’t anything more gorgeous than Emilia Clarke issuing commands in a fictional foreign tongue.

When the slave lord arrives, bearing gold to sway Dany from hitting the city, she unleashes some dragon drama on him – I’d shake in fear, too – before demanding that Yunkai free all of its slaves and offer reparations or else she’ll lay waste to the place. (Important to note: He offers ships as part of his bribe to get her to leave Yunkai alone – might these be the vessels that finally bring the Mother of Dragons back to the Seven Kingdoms?)

THE WILDLINGS: THE-GIRL-IS-MINE EDITION | We find out exactly what’s driving Orell’s burning hatred of Jon Snow: The warg fancies Ygritte (get in line, eagleman!). Orell informs Jon that people love, kill and are loyal when it suits them – “She knows that. You don’t, which is why you’ll never hold onto her.” Not content with messing with Jon, Orell then hits on – and is shut down by – the redhead in question. So he mocks her, “You like his pretty hair and his pretty eyes?” (Uh, yeah dude. Who wouldn’t wanna shovel themselves a little of that freshly fallen Snow?) Orell warns that she doesn’t know who Jon really is; later, Jon has a warning of his own for his new squeeze: The free folk have tried to take the kingdoms six times in recorded history, and they’ve been defeated every time. “The seventh will be the same,” he says sadly. She’s got a more zen take on it: “If we die, we die. But first, we live.” And then they make out. (Does it seem like every Jon-Ygritte scene ends this way? Not complaining, just observing.)

HOUSE GREYJOY: NOT-SO-COCKY-NOW EDITION | This week in Theon Greyjoy’s total destruction redefines “torture porn.” Two lovely ladies free him from his contraption and tend to his wounds, then tend to… other body parts that surely haven’t gotten much love as of late. Theon at first begs for them to leave him alone, sure that his tormentor has sent them, but then remembers he’s a straight male and gets past his suspicion because, well, a naked woman is straddling him and her also naked friend seems to want in on the action. Just as I’m expecting a pizza-delivery guy to show up and join the party, Theon’s torturer enters and the girls step away. He immediately begins crying for mercy, but none comes his way as Georgelgänger prepares to make “a few alterations” to the same section of Greyjoy’s anatomy that captured the women’s interest. Yowza.

HOUSE LANNISTER: GRIZZLY-GAMES EDITION | Jaime visits prisoner Brienne before he leaves for King’s Landing. “I owe you a debt,” he says. “You gave your word. Keep it, and consider the debt paid,” she answers, and so he vows to return Arya and Sansa to Catelyn Stark. With that out of the way, it’s time for farewells. “Goodbye, Ser Jaime,” Brienne says softly, and her choice of his given name instead of “Kingslayer” isn’t lost on the one-handed knight, who is too moved to summon any more words and turns to leave.

The trip home has barely gotten underway when Jaime learns that Locke has turned down the gold ransom Brienne’s father offered, thinking he’d get even more sapphires (based on Jaime’s false story a few episodes back) instead. With Roose Bolton away from Harrenhal for Edmure Tully’s wedding, Brienne is at the mercy of the sadistic Locke and his men… which means Jaime is soon riding back the way he came. He arrives at Harrenhal just in time to see Brienne fighting a gigantic bear in a pit, and I don’t know what’s more degrading: the fact that she’s being treated like an animal (the crowd is actually singing “The Bear and the Maiden Fair”) or the fact that her last moments on the planet might be spent in that pink-and-fur travesty of a gown.

Jaime jumps down and helps boost her out of the ring, then she reaches down and hauls him out, too. (There’s a lot more violence, near-death and bear slobber in the sequence, but that’s the gist.) “I’m taking her to King’s Landing unless you kill me,” he tells Locke. And then they make out. (Just kidding! But doesn’t it seem like every Jaime-Brienne scene should end that way? Not complaining, just observing. And ‘shipping. And possibly drafting a fanfic in my head.)

Now it’s your turn. What did you think about Osha’s reasons for not wanting to return to the other side of the wall? What do you think will become of Shae? And does Jaime’s arm bear an uncanny resemblance to The X-Files’ flukeman? Sound off in the comments!


Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Laura says:

    I ship it like crazy after tonight oh god HE CAME BACK FOR HER

    • Abby says:

      Now, THOSE are the things you do for love, Jaime! I almost cried when he couldn’t respond to her “Ser Jaime”, you could tell they knew she was going to die out there. and when he figured out she wouldn’t last the night. I’ve never seen him so desperately for someone, not even Tyrion or Cersei.

    • Aleksa says:

      Their “relationship” is one of my favorite in the book series.

    • Danielle says:

      God, so do I. Jaime and Brienne have amazing chemistry.

      Now, kiss!

  2. Emily says:

    thought I was the only one shipping Jamie and Brienne . . .it’s wrong somehow but not as wrong as Jamie and Cersei . . .or at least that is what I tell myself :)

    • Elly says:

      At first I wanted them to just be really good buddies but after he came back for her I’m like “Kill the bear, make a rug out of him, and bang it out already!!!”

      I don’t get why Ramsay (Theon’s torturer) sent the women in? I know he’s turning Theon’s Steve into an Eve but why the women first?

      • Guess says:

        And the entitlement in which Jaime quibs at Locke: “A wooden sword?! You gave her a wooden swrod!” Now, that’s the hallmark of a taken man right then and there IMO.

      • Ramsay is not only torturing Theon physically, he is torturing Theon mentally. What better way to make a point than to show him kindness, hope, or simply something other than pain, and then snatch it away and take a little more while you’re at it. His goal would seem to be to tear Theon down to less than nothing. Even the Unsullied were at least left with pride, I don’t Theon will even have that when Ramsay is done.

        • Elly says:

          Makes sense, I have the biggest crush on the actor who plays Ramsay (he was on this great show called Misfits) so it’s weird to see him play such a psycho.

  3. Kristine S. says:

    Stop the shipping. Brienne is a friend. Something I don’t think he’s ever really had before. It’s not romance, it’s loyalty. I’m digging it. I am slowly starting to forgive him his prior evil ways.

    • Candace says:

      Thank you! My thoughts exactly. Their friendship is way better than any type of romance, and frankly I don’t see anything sexual between the two. It’s loyalty and I’m loving it.

    • eileen says:

      Totally agree! I think it is way hot, but not in a I want them together way, but more like I starting to want Ser Jaime for myself kind of way! I love the loyalty and respect they have developed for each other and I think you nailed it when you said he has never had that before. It is so beautiful just as it is. Some things are stronger and deeper than sex!

    • Abby says:

      Friends do not jump on the hot tub with other friends, I’m just saying. If those are friends then Renly was not gay.

    • Mike says:

      I agree with this, I don’t know if I want them romantically together, but I ship it anyway.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’ve only read up to book three, but in the books there’s definitely sexual attraction, at least on his part (there are no chapters from her pov in the third book so we don’t know what’s going on in her head). Jamie describes being aroused when seeing her in the tub and there are a couple other hints that he sees her as more than just a friend.

      • Guess says:

        Plus, I’ve never seen a character so visually “fall for someone” on TV like Jaime did on the bear pit!

  4. Niki says:

    Jamie and Brienne are huge fan favorites among the book readers.

  5. Mike says:

    I’m not going to lie, I ship it, I d

  6. Anon says:

    Dude…I don’t have time at the moment to read this recap…but I saw the title, and I gotta say…


  7. cjeffery7 says:

    all i saw when osha was talking was her horrific prosthetic eye brows. apparently ygritte gets to be the only pretty wildling. lol.

  8. “What did you think about Asha’s reasons for not wanting to return to the other side of the wall?”

    Asha is Theon’s sister in the books, named Yara in the series. Osha is the wildling. And she could just say “there are white walkers, I killed one” instead of wasting screen time.

    There are too many characters in the series, they don’t need to develop all of them. Specially those who are not that relevant to the story.

    • Mark says:

      I wish the show would deviate more from the books. Then we wouldnt have so many dolts posting “in the books x and x happened” because theyre too stupid to understand what an ADAPTATION is…

      • Fortunately it is not the case. The best moments of the show are being taken almost line by line from the books, like Jamie’s confession about Aerys II Targaryen. Little adaption was done there.

        Osha vs Reed siblings serves no purpose. Yes, we need to remember Brandon is going to the North. But they could focus on his training instead of wasting time with Osha and Meera fighting about rabbits.

        Derivation is good when is worked out like Varys/Petyr participation on the Tyrell/Lannister/Stark plot.

        At the end of Season 2 I was like you, but then I read the books. That made me enjoy the show even more.

        : )

        • Mike says:

          Agree 100%, I actually love Bran’s journey in the books, and if we are going to only visit Bran for 5 minutes an episode, can we please focus on Bran and Jojen.

      • Abby says:

        I love what they have done so far: Robb never got to be a father at this point of the books, like the show made of him tonight. Osha’s wildling past sounds richer with a love one who came back from the grave, even Gendry knowing about his father and his actual indentity is completely new. We’ve entered unchartered territory and it couldn’t be more exciting IMO.

        • Jackie H says:

          Plus they are making Gendy…. a baratheon bastard we know about, take the place of a baratheon bastard that they never cast in the show: Edric Storm.

          • Jackie H says:


          • Guess says:

            Actually, i think he has the Ned Dayne vibe with Arya & the Brotherhood, the Edric Storm angle for his uncle Stannis and I strongly suspect one of his men’s angle for future scenes “protecting the world”.

        • I’m actually hating what they are doing with Rob and Talisa. I know they are doing it for more emotional impact for later in the story but, to be perfectly frank, that storyline almost wrecked me in the books without all this added love story/making a baby business.

      • Yes, well, it is difficult to think of this as an adaptation instead of a literal translation when about 95% of what is on the screen comes verbatim from the books. Cut people some slack.

    • Mike says:

      Looking at the review it was a smart idea for Yaras name change. Developing characters is a good thing but I wish they would have spent this time on Jojen or Meera instead since they are much more interesting characters.

    • lucy says:

      Ugh. Why can’t Osha disappear into the backcountry with Rickon? She’s so annoying! They are ruining her, she’s abrasive, not paranoid and stupid. And Meera and Jojen are more interesting. I totally agree, if ever they were going to edit, Osha’s story about white walker was the place to do it. We’ve seen them already, plenty.

      • Matty says:

        Yeah why is she even still around? In the books she leaves with Rickon right after Winterfell burns down, I think. And nobody misses her.

  9. ILuvBoobies says:

    This is HBO. Can we get some Brienne tittay asap please? TIA.

  10. Kat says:

    I can’t believe I’m saying this but…I love Jaime!!! Another fantastic episode.

  11. Britta Unfiltered says:

    Kimberly, your Mad Men review is late. :) I just came over to TVLine to look for it after watching the episode. You do great Mad Men reviews, Kimberly. I think you have a good grasp on the subtleties of the show, and your reviews are always kinda funny. Tonight was a good episode, but I’m surprised how little attention the show gave to the Bobby Kennedy assassination. It was just one quick scene at the end.

  12. nikki says:

    A baby for King Robb. So happy. Jaime/Brienne are so much better than any couple on this show. I love them.

    • Abby says:

      Jaime and Brienne are the best ship of TV this season. I’m so glad Robb got to be a father! it’s almost enough to make up for, what he believes, was done to Bran and Rickon.

  13. Jane says:

    I know they are just friends but damn if its not a great ship to be on!!

  14. Abby says:

    I know I say this a lot but : Robb is going to be a father! I can’t believe Robb is getting to be a father, its the best news of this episode.

  15. lucy says:

    OK, I never thought I’d say this but: I think we’ve seen enough Theon torture scenes. I hate the miserable pus pocket, still don’t really care about him, but my need to see him suffer is satisfied. Can he just be tortured off screen from now on?

    • Brandon says:

      You know nothing Lucy

    • Rain says:

      Thank you Lucy! I’m so beyond over the Theon story. I don’t have a clue who’s torturing him and why and at this point I’m beyond caring! I’ve started watching the episode 15 minutes late so when these scenes come on I can fast forward.

      • this is so weird to me. It’s never a mystery in the books as to who has him and who is torturing him. I wonder what prompted the decision to make it a mystery.

        • Jake says:

          I think it might be because, and I’m only hypothosizing because I haven’t read the books yet, but is Theon even in, or mentioned in the book “A Storm of Swords.” Maybe their keeping it a mystery to keep you attached to Theon and knowing as much as he does, and feeling the monotony and pain of his unrelenting torture (speaking as a show watcher only).

          I feel like, as much as I love this series, I really need to read the books. I’ll probably do that this summer once the seasons over :)

          • Yes, Theon’s torture season are horrific and they are throughout the book. Those are not made up scenes. As a matter of fact the torture scenes in the book are probably longer and worse than the ones in the show.

      • Laurie Emerson says:

        I do not like the character of Theon but the torture is getting monotonous. I am not sure who is doing it to him, but hubby thinks that he might be a brother of the two little boys who Theon had killed and burned. I know they were orphans, but maybe their brother?

  16. Kevan says:

    Oh the short-lived happiness of The King in the North….

    • Guess says:

      I don’t know which one was the happier, Robb or Jon, i’m glad the brothers fell in love across the same episodes, goes to prove there’s no difference between high borns and bastards on TV, or Westeros for that matter.

  17. Matty says:

    Does anyone else think they’ll finish Season 3 with the Red Wedding and leave King Joffrey’s wedding for Season Four? I mean, killing off two main characters in one season is too much even for HBO…

    • Brandon says:

      RW is episode 9 – believe the episode will be completely the RW and nothing else-like Blackwater last season. But could be wrong. Yes joff wedding will be next season.

    • Guess says:

      I think so, Jaime and Brienne are just leaving Harrenhal, they were supposed to be near King’s Landing by the time the heard about Joffrey’s and Edmure’s wedding and their world turns upside down all over again.

    • Faster says:

      Not sure, but I was definitely hoping to see the royal wedding this season

  18. i love this show, but how date like, your making your reviews is irritating at best, seriosly, go get laid

  19. Wondering says:

    Does anyone know what the timetable is from season 1-3? Like how long has it been since cerseri and Jamie have seen each other? How long since Robert took Ned south? Robb’s wife said she had been nursing people for 2 years now so I am assuming the wars have been going on 2 years?? And if so how long does it take arya and brieanns hair to grow even one inch???

    • Brandon says:

      If you complained about those insignificant details out loud while watching the show I would slap you with my back hand. Who cares

      • Wondering says:

        It might be insignificant to you but I really want to know how long cerseri and Jamie have been apart. Last time I remember them together was when they pushed bran off the tower and “the things he does for love”. Has enough time passed where he has moved on from her and onto brieann??? I for one and really hoping so. Just want to know if I should be prepared to be disappointed.

        • Guess says:

          Well, for one Jaime said he had been “on a muddy pen for the past year” the episode he and Brienne were captured, so I believe the show already established it’s been a year since the last time he saw his family.

      • Faster says:

        Uh, rude. The poster was asking a question, not complaining.

    • Rain says:

      I have been trying to figure out the timetable as well. I’ve decided it’s been 2 years – I might be off, but I know Jamie was in the pit for at least a year so with him and Brienne traipsing through the woods heading to King’s Landing and then being taken it had to be months if not an entire year added on to that.

  20. Ben says:

    Jamie and Brienne is now my OTP. Every scene with them in just seems so perfectly crafted, when they’re bitching at each other it’s marvellously entertaining and when they’re being nice to each other it’s unbearably beautiful.

  21. Fredo says:

    I realize the TV show is an adaptation of the books, but I don’t like the changes to several of the sub-plots: Gendry meeting Mellisandra, going back to King’s Landing and finding out his true lineage; Robb marrying a different women and perhaps becoming a father; Ygritte and Orel the Warg’s relationship; Osha’s back story and why is Rikkon still with her? All of these changes/additions do not serve the story well. Also, why the secret about Theon’s torturer….Ramsey for sure. IMO, Joffrey’s wedding in Ep9 and Edmure’s wedding in Ep10

    • Mike says:

      No, Joffreys wedding won’t be until next season, RW is episode 9.

    • Guess says:

      To me, the biggest change was Jaime juping on the bear pit because he couldn’t take it anymore; in the books, he did so because Vargo told him that, if he wanted [Brienne] then he should go get her, and the character just fell right next to her without thinking things through. This time, the TV show made it look like Jaime knew exactly what he was doing, but didn’t care: he was taking her out of there alive or he was going to die with her right then and there.

  22. Drewer says:

    Haha, you got “Georgelgänger” and “Greyjoy’s anatomy” in the same sentence.

  23. Fredo says:

    Just a question: Who is Mellisandra planning to see in King’s Landing? Surely presenting Gendry to anyone in the royal court will get herself killed (as well as Gendry)? Again, another pretty big change from the books, opening up unneeded new story lines.

    • Matty says:

      We all agree that she wants to sacrifice Gendry to draw power from his blood, right? Because in the books she was always trying to get at Edric Storm, who is also Robert’s bastard. Maybe they just didn’t want to introduce another character and decided to make Gendry more interesting, because in the books he doesn’t have any relevant storylines after the whole Brotherhoods thing.

      • Fredo says:

        But why would she go to King’s Landing? Why not back to whereever Stannis is hiding out (Dragonestone). Not happy with this new storyline.

        • LauraMipsome says:

          I didn’t get the impression that they were actually stopping in at King’s Landing… just sailing past it on the way to Dragonstone. I don’t think Mel would risk Gendry’s life by taking him there, especially after laying down so much coin for his pretty self, and (more importantly to her) really needing his blood for something. I wonder if he gets to keep his blood in his body… which to my mind just brings back the quote, “If you think this has a happy ending, you haven’t been paying attention.”

          • Guess says:

            I agree, King’s Landing was a stop on the way to Stannis, Melisandre did say she wasn’t going to leave Stannis back in episode 4

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