|First of His Name|
|Season 4, Episode 5|
|Air date||May 4, 2014|
|Written by||David Benioff and D.B. Weiss|
|Directed by||Michelle MacLaren|
"The Laws of Gods and Men"
"First of His Name" is the fifth episode of the fourth season of Game of Thrones. It is the thirty-fifth episode of the series overall. It premiered on May 4, 2014. It was written by producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss and directed by Michelle MacLaren.
Across the Narrow Sea
In her new headquarters atop the Great Pyramid, Daenerys learns that Joffrey is dead and Tommen is about to be crowned. She is irritated to learn that Daario Naharis has captured Meereen's navy without her explicit orders to do so, but mulls over the possibility of setting sail for Westeros and taking King's Landing with her 8,000 Unsullied and 2,000 Second Sons. Barristan Selmy is optimistic about their chances, but Jorah Mormont is not: while 10,000 troops should be enough to take King's Landing from its exhausted defenders, there's still the rest of the continent to worry about. Her advisors then reveal more troubling news: the Wise Masters have bounced back and re-enslaved every freed man in Yunkai, and although Astapor remains free, the council Daenerys installed has been deposed by a butcher named Cleon. Daenerys dismisses everyone but Jorah and muses that her plans are in shambles. He reminds her that she is the last Targaryen and the Mother of Dragons, but Dany says she needs to be more than that. She laments that if she cannot keep order in three cities, she has no hope of controlling seven kingdoms. She is therefore resolved to remain in Meereen and "do what queens do": rule.
At King's Landing
Tommen is crowned king of Westeros, while Cersei makes what appears to be a peaceful gesture towards Margaery, who remains wary. Cersei talks to Prince Oberyn and asks him a favor. She hasn't seen her daughter, Myrcella, in over a year. Cersei asks Oberyn to bring her a gift, a ship, since she missed her last nameday.
Tywin reveals to Cersei their problem with the Iron Bank of Braavos; they owe 'a tremendous sum', and the gold mines of the Westerlands actually ran dry three years ago. Therefore, even though Tywin admits the Lannisters can trust nobody except themselves, they need the Tyrells' wealth and resources on their side.
In the Riverlands
While on the road, Podrick proves to be a hindrance to Brienne. He has problems with his horse and accidentally sets fire to a rabbit they were cooking. Brienne tries to get rid of Podrick by releasing him from the vow he swore as her squire, but to no avail. They are bound for Castle Black, where Brienne believes Sansa may have taken refuge with her half-brother, Jon Snow. Brienne questions Podrick about his duties as squire to Tyrion. He tells her his job was mostly pouring wine, alongside other menial tasks. Brienne then asks if Podrick did anything related to combat. Podrick reveals how he killed Ser Mandon Moore of the Kingsguard by shoving a spear through his head when he tried to kill Tyrion during the Battle of the Blackwater. Brienne then allows Podrick to help her remove her armor.
In the Vale of Arryn
Lord Petyr Baelish and Sansa Stark arrive safely at the Bloody Gate, though Petyr has Sansa cover her hair, as auburn is widely known as a Tully trait, and introduces her as his niece, Alayne. Upon arriving at the Eyrie itself, Sansa tries to slip into her alias, but Lysa Arryn tells her not to bother around her own flesh and blood. Lysa laments Sansa's treatment in King's Landing, ignoring her attempts to defend Tyrion's character. Robin Arryn is delighted to see Petyr and to show Sansa the Moon Door. Lysa, apparently having finally given Robin some independence, reminds him never to reveal Sansa's identity and show her to her room. The instant they leave, Lysa, for unclear reasons, insists on marrying Petyr immediately. Petyr is unable to deter her, particularly when Lysa reveals that a Septon and witnesses have been waiting outside the main door. A delighted Lysa declares that she will scream so loudly that night that they will be able to hear her across the Narrow Sea. Later that night, an exasperated Sansa attempts to sleep as Lysa tries to fulfill that promise.
Later on, Lysa has a meal with Sansa, giving her some lemon cakes. Sansa, relieved to be safe at last, indulges herself, though she becomes a little self-conscious when Lysa begins telling stories of Catelyn's overeating in her youth. Lysa encourages Sansa to keep eating, as she was only telling a story, and anyway, Petyr had four crates of lemons brought from the Crownlands just for Sansa's cakes. Lysa suddenly degenerates from a kindly aunt into a psychotic newlywed half-mad with jealousy and demands to know why Petyr cares so much about Sansa, and if he has slept with her as he has his whores. She also rants about Catelyn's love for Sansa's uncle Brandon and how he nearly killed Petyr. Horrified, Sansa weeps and insists that she is still a virgin and that Petyr thinks she's just a stupid girl who doesn't know anything, and who cannot lie at all so always tells the truth. Lysa immediately calms down and comforts Sansa, assuring her that she believes her, and that since neither Tyrion nor Petyr had slept with her, Sansa can proceed to marry Robin. Sansa seems unsure of what to make of this information, but one thing is clear: King's Landing has made her a consummate actress.
On the road to the Eyrie, Sandor Clegane and Arya Stark continue to spar verbally and physically, particularly when Clegane disparages Arya's water dancing and insults Syrio Forel for being overcome by a glorified thug like Meryn Trant.
Beyond the Wall
At Craster's Keep, Locke scouts the keep for the party of the Night's Watch sent to eliminate the traitors holed up there; in his reconnaissance, Locke finds the hut where Bran Stark, Jojen, Meera and Hodor are being held captive. Reporting back to Jon Snow and the others, Locke tells them that only 11 traitors are present and most of them are drunk and won't prove much of a threat. He also lies about the hut where the prisoners are being kept, claiming there are hounds kept inside and that they should keep away from it to prevent the dogs alerting their enemy. Jon agrees and tells the party they attack at nightfall.
That night, Karl enters the prisoners' hut and attempts to rape Meera, but Jojen distracts Karl when he reveals his possession of greensight and claims to have seen Karl dead before the night is out. At that moment, Rast rushes in to warn Karl the keep is under attack; Jon's party rushes through the defenses and starts killing their traitorous former brethren. In the confusion, Locke slips into the tent and attempts to abduct Bran, but Bran wargs into Hodor and uses him to kill Locke. Bran spots Jon in the fighting, but Jojen prevents him from going to his older brother, reminding Bran that they must continue onward to reach the three-eyed raven and that Jon would stop them. Bran reluctantly leaves despite being so close to Jon.
The Night's Watch swiftly overcome their enemy and Jon confronts Karl in single combat. Karl's use of dirty tactics learned in his criminal past give him the upper hand. Before he can finish Jon, one of Craster's wives, Sissy, stabs him from behind. When Karl rounds on her, Jon gets back to his feet and drives Longclaw through the back of Karl's skull, killing him.
In the aftermath of the battle, four brothers of the Night's Watch, including Locke, are found to have died, while all the traitors but one are accounted for. The sole survivor, Rast, runs in terror through the forest until he reaches the cage where Ghost was held. He notices someone has opened the cage but before he can do more than absorb this fact, the direwolf lunges out of nowhere and kills him. Ghost then finds his way back to Jon, who is overjoyed to see his companion again. Speaking to Craster's wives, Jon warns them that Mance Rayder's army and worse besides will soon reach their location and offers to take them to safety south of the Wall, but the women refuse, preferring to set out on their own. Before departing back for Castle Black, Jon has Craster's Keep burned to the ground, along with the bodies of all those who died there.
- Ser Donnel Waynwood
- 15 of 25 cast members for the fourth season appear in this episode.
- Starring cast members Alfie Allen (Theon Greyjoy), John Bradley (Samwell Tarly), Liam Cunningham (Davos Seaworth), Stephen Dillane (Stannis Baratheon), Peter Dinklage (Tyrion Lannister), Kristofer Hivju (Tormund), Sibel Kekilli (Shae), Rose Leslie (Ygritte), Hannah Murray (Gilly), Iwan Rheon (Ramsay Snow), and Carice van Houten (Melisandre) are not credited and do not appear in this episode.
- Conleth Hill is uncredited for his role as Varys in this episode.
- Although credited, Jerome Flynn does not appear in this episode.
- Tyrion Lannister does not appear in this episode. Jaime Lannister, and other Small Council members such as Varys and Pycelle, as well as Loras and Mace Tyrell, appear during Tommen's coronation but have no significant dialogue. This makes it only the third episode that Tyrion hasn't appeared in, after Season 3's "The Rains of Castamere" (which included no scenes in King's Landing at all) and Season 1's "You Win or You Die".
- Despite being a prominent location in the episode, the Eyrie does not appear in the opening title sequence. In fact, the title sequence has not changed all season.
- This episode finally reveals the mystery of who murdered Jon Arryn, Hand of the King during most of King Robert Baratheon's seventeen year reign, and whose death set the main narrative of the story in motion in the very first episode of the TV series. Littlefinger ordered Jon's own wife Lysa to poison him, and then had Lysa write a letter to her own sister, Catelyn Stark, saying that the Lannisters were responsible. This letter is what led Eddard to accept Robert's offer to be the new Hand, to discover what happened to Jon. In Season 2's "What is Dead May Never Die", Tyrion interrogated Pycelle, who explained that Lord Arryn discovered that none of Cersei's children were really Robert's. While Pycelle is a Lannister agent, he explained that, before he could deal with him, someone else already poisoned Jon Arryn (and Pycelle simply assumed it was one of Cersei's other spies). Pycelle realized Lord Arryn was poisoned, but withheld treatment from him to ensure that he would succumb. Moreover, in Season 1 when Catelyn asked Varys and Littlefinger about the Valyrian steel dagger that the Catspaw assassin attempted to kill Bran with, Petyr lied and said it belonged to Tyrion Lannister - even though Tyrion pointed out to Catelyn that only an idiot would arm an assassin with a blade publicly known to be his own. Baelish is not a Lannister agent, however, because he then had Joffrey poisoned. Littlefinger is the true architect of the entire War of the Five Kings, intentionally tricking the Starks and Lannisters into fighting a devastating war in order to exhaust them both, and cause the political chaos that creates the opportunities he thrives on.
- This episode also explains why, in Season 1, Lysa Arryn bizarrely refused to send the armies of the Vale to join forces with the North and the Riverlands against the Lannisters. At the time, the only excuse she gave Catelyn was that she was worried for her son's safety, even though she alleged that the Lannisters had killed her own husband and the boy's father. In reality, Lysa betrayed her own family (the Arryns, the Tullys, and the Starks) because of her fanatical obsession with Petyr. She didn't join forces with the Starks because this might have tipped the odds against the Lannisters and quickly ended the war, while Littlefinger wanted to drag out the war to create as much chaos as possible.
- Although Lysa is obsessed with Littlefinger, Littlefinger's own obsession, Catelyn Stark, was killed due to the events he set in motion.
- Lysa's intention to marry Sansa to her first cousin Robin Arryn, while unusual in this context (due to his age and stunted mental abilities) is not considered incest in the Seven Kingdoms. As in real-life aristocratic families, first cousins have been known to marry in Westeros to secure political alliances. Tywin Lannister's own wife Joanna Lannister was his first cousin (her surname was already "Lannister" before they married), and Olenna Tyrell's daughter (Mace's sister) married her own first cousin Paxter Redwyne, Olenna's nephew (as she was born Olenna Redwyne).
- Oberyn Martell mentions to Cersei that he has eight daughters: this is the first time that it has been confirmed that all of his bastard daughters, known as the Sand Snakes, exist in the TV series continuity. With some of the larger noble families, the TV series has sometimes condensed or simply dropped secondary characters. Specifically in the case of House Tyrell, Margaery and Loras actually have two older brothers in the books, Willas and Garlan, but the TV series has heavily implied that Loras is the only son of Mace Tyrell. In Season 2, the production team was unsure if they could fit Stannis Baratheon's daughter Shireen into the TV series, so they left dialogue deliberately ambiguous (pointedly saying that he has "no sons", to leave open the option to later say that he does have a daughter). At conventions and in interviews, George R.R. Martin had earlier expressed the concern that the TV series might have to condense several members of House Martell, just as the Tyrell brothers have been (apparently) condensed. While it isn't clear if all eight of the Sand Snakes will ever prominently appear in the TV series, this episode at least confirms that all eight of them exist as separate characters within the TV continuity. The four oldest of Oberyn's bastard daughters were each by different women, and after he began his relationship with Ellaria Sand he had four more daughters with her, all of them bastards because he never formally married Ellaria. Elia Sand, the only one of his daughters that he mentions in this episode, is his oldest daughter with Ellaria. She is the same age as Sansa Stark.
- During Tommen's coronation scene, he is named "King of the Andals and the First Men". In the books, the title is actually "King of the Andals, the Rhoynar, and the First Men" - acknowledging the three major ethnic groups in the Seven Kingdoms. The Rhoynar are the ancestors of the modern Dornishmen and only settled in Dorne, which did not formally join the Targaryen realm until about one century ago, two centuries after Aegon the Conqueror united the rest of the kingdoms. The shortened title was first used at the beginning of the first episode, when Eddard Stark recites Robert's full title before beheading the deserter from the Night's Watch. Presumably, the shortened title was used because the Dornish would not be introduced until Season 4 (and indeed, were barely mentioned the past three seasons). Yet in this episode, no reference is made to Tommen also being king "of the Rhoynar", despite Oberyn Martell prominently standing among the nobles gathered before the throne. Given that the shortened form is the title used throughout the first three seasons, however, it appears that the TV producers simply chose to be internally consistent and never introduce the line in the title about being king of the "Rhoynar" (otherwise, Season 4 would have had to introduce the large retcon that every time a king's title was mentioned in the past three seasons, they should have said "of the Rhoynar" but mysteriously didn't).
- This is not necessarily a contradiction, and can easily be reconciled as simply a difference between how the book continuity and TV continuity address the unique status of Dorne. When Dorne actually did unite with the Iron Throne one century ago it was through peaceful marriage-alliance instead of conquest, so the Dornish were allowed to keep certain special privileges and local laws (such as that Dorne practices equal primogeniture while the other kingdoms practice male-preference primogeniture). One of these privileges is that the rulers of Dorne could even continue to refer to themselves as "Prince" of Dorne, apparently ranking above a "Lord Paramount" like Eddard Stark or Mace Tyrell. Therefore the implication seems to be that in the TV series's history, the Targaryen kings not only allowed the Martells to keep calling themselves "Princes" of Dorne, but as a polite acknowledgement of Dorne's semi-autonomous status the Targaryens did not call themselves Kings "of the Rhoynar" in addition to the First Men and Andals (though they did continue to call themselves "Lord of the Seven Kingdoms").
- Cersei's remark to Margaery that the realm hasn't actually had a good king in nearly fifty years is fairly accurate. Joffrey ruled for barely three years filled with civil war, while Robert Baratheon was a soldier who won the throne on the battlefield but didn't know how to govern, instead feasting and whoring while his Small Council ran the realm for seventeen years. Before that, the Mad King Aerys II Targaryen ruled for over twenty years, eventually degenerating into a reign of terror - though like with Robert, these were mostly prosperous years because Aerys's Hand of the King (Tywin Lannister) was the man actually holding the realm together. In the books, the last king generally held to have been a good ruler was Aerys II's grandfather Aegon V Targaryen: Aerys II's father Jaehaerys II had very poor health and died young after only three years on the throne, though Ser Barristan remembers that he ruled well in that brief time. The TV series continuity officially cut Jaehaerys II, however, to streamline the Targaryen family tree, so in the TV series Aegon V was actually the Mad King's father, not his grandfather.
- Cersei refers to Joffrey as her firstborn son: the TV continuity actually invented that Cersei had an (as yet unnamed) son by Robert before Joffrey, but he died of a fever in infancy (as explained in Season 1 episode 2 "The Kingsroad". While her line might be forgetting this change, Cersei might also just be speaking loosely: "my first born surviving son". Infant mortality is not uncommon even among the nobility in Westeros, and even in the books some parents only count the order of their children who lived to maturity.
- Tywin's claim to Cersei that the last working gold mine of the Westerlands ran dry three years ago (since the war began) does not appear in the books. It may be something of an exaggeration. Westeros is an entire continent, and each of the "Seven Kingdoms" is roughly the size of a large European country, thus saying "all of the gold mines in the Westerlands have run dry" is akin to saying "all of the gold mines in France have run dry". In the books the Westerlands mines are as productive as ever, but Lannister wartime spending has drastically outpaced their rate of gold production, to the point that they are nearly bankrupt and cannot produce enough gold to pay back the Iron Bank of Braavos in the foreseeable future. The TV series may have condensed this point to try to make it obvious to TV viewers just how bad the Lannisters' financial position has become.
- In the Season 4 premiere, Olenna Tyrell remarked to Tywin that the Lannisters will need House Tyrell's help to pay off their massive debts to the Iron Bank. He attempted to wave it off by saying that he didn't fear the Iron Bank, but Olenna chided him that they both knew that he was lying, because a man of his intelligence knows that he should fear it. Now, in private, Tywin freely admits to Cersei that there is no way that he can evade, cheat, or intimidate the Iron Bank: the only thing he can do is somehow pay back the money they owe.
- During Tommen's coronation, he is officially referred to as "King of the Andals and the First Men"
- Arya's discussion with the Hound about Syrio Forel brings up a point from the books. The Kingsguard is supposed to be an elite group but many of the members of Robert Baratheon's Kingsguard were political appointments made to secure ties with families in the Crownlands, Stormlands, Westerlands and the Reach, neither very honorable men nor particularly skilled (as Bronn pointed out, Ser Meryn seemed to be better at beating little girls than actual fighting). In this episode, Sandor scoffs that Meryn could never have defeated a real master swordsman - which he would be a reasonable judge of, as Sandor knew Ser Meryn for years while serving at the royal court, and particularly from briefly serving alongside him in the Kingsguard. Arya thinks Meryn killed Syrio, but she never actually saw Syrio die: in both the books and TV series, she simply heard them beginning to fight as she ran away through the outer hallway. If Syrio did somehow manage to fight off Meryn and escape, however, it has not been revealed as of the current novel, and his fate remains ambiguous.
In the books
- The episode is adapted from the following chapters of A Storm of Swords:
- Chapter 68, Sansa VI: Sansa is brought to the Vale by Littlefinger and meets her Aunt Lysa, who believes Littlefinger might be in love with Sansa.
- Chapter 71, Daenerys VI: Daenerys decides to stay in Meereen to rule as its queen.
- Chapter 72, Jaime X: Tommen becomes King.
- The episode is adapted from the following chapters of A Feast for Crows
- Chapter 9, Brienne II: Brienne and Podrick continue their quest on the Kingsroad to find Sansa Stark
- The episode is adapted from the following chapters of A Dance with Dragons
- Chapter 4, Bran I: Bran, Jojen, Meera, and Hodor choose to move north and find the three-eyed raven beyond the wall.
Karl: "Lord Snow, are you bringing me back for trial?"
Locke : "Have you seen what I can do with a knife?"
Sandor Clegane: "Your friend is dead, and Meryn Trant's not, because Trant had armor and a big fucking sword."
Cersei Lannister: "Everywhere in the world they hurt little girls."
Morag: "Meaning all respect Ser crow, Craster beat us and worse. Your brother crows beat us and worse. We'll find our own way."