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The Prince of Winterfell

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"The Prince of Winterfell"
Season 2, Episode 8
Tyrion and Varys 2x08
Air date May 20, 2012
Written by David Benioff & D.B. Weiss
Directed by Alan Taylor
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"The Prince of Winterfell" is the eighth episode of the second season of Game of Thrones. It is the eighteenth episode of the series overall. It premiered on May 20, 2012. It was written by executive producers David Benioff & D.B. Weiss and directed by co-executive producer Alan Taylor.

The episode won a Creative Arts Emmy Award for Costumes in a Series in September 2012[1].

Theon holds the fort; Arya calls in her debt with Jaqen; Robb is betrayed; Stannis and Davos approach their destination.

PlotEdit

SummaryEdit

Beyond the WallEdit

Ygritte brings Jon Snow before the Lord of Bones, who orders him executed, because he has already captured Qhorin Halfhand and doesn't need two "crows" for questioning. Ygritte convinces him to spare Jon because of his Stark blood. Qhorin initiates a plan to install Jon as a spy within the wildling ranks.

Grenn and Samwell Tarly discover a cache of Dragon glass weapons at the Fist of the First Men. Jon's absence has been noted, but Sam refuses to believe that he is dead.

Across the Narrow SeaEdit

Ser Jorah Mormont advises Daenerys Targaryen to leave her dragons and flee Qarth. She insists on attempting to reclaim them and asks Ser Jorah to lead her to the House of the Undying, where she must endure a strange mystical maze to get to them. 

In the Seven KingdomsEdit

Theon and Dagmer

Theon gives Dagmer a pouch of gold to compensate for the killing of the orphans.

Yara Greyjoy arrives at Winterfell, but instead of bringing reinforcements she offers Theon only advice. Winterfell is too far from the sea, they can't successfully defend it with so few soldiers, and the North is rising against him. She implores Theon to abandon the castle and return home with her, but he refuses to give up his prize. Dagmer tells Theon that after killing the orphans, he also murdered the farmer and his wife.

Bran and Rickon Alive

Bran overhears Luwin and Osha

Luwin spots Osha sneaking into the catacombs. He follows her inside, and she explains that after reaching the farm she doubled back, using a stream to mask their scent from the hounds. Luwin urges her not to tell Bran and Rickon about the children Theon had murdered, but Bran is sitting up listening to them.

Stannis Baratheon's fleet is closing in on King's Landing. Stannis tells Davos that he admires him and offers him the Hand of the King role once he takes back his throne. Tyrion Lannister scours history books seeking inspiration for his plans to defend the city. He takes advice from Bronn and Varys and decides to make use of the stocks of wildfire. King Joffrey Baratheon is full of bravado, but his mother is worried about letting him fight. She tries to ensure his safety by kidnapping the prostitute Ros, believing that she is Tyrion's lover. Tyrion is relieved that Shae is safe but vows revenge against his sister.

Jaqen H'ghar 2x8 1

Arya gives Jaqen his own name

Lord Tywin Lannister is torn between needing to defend King's Landing and wanting to drive King Robb Stark from the Westerlands. He decides to march west, leaving Arya Stark at Harrenhal to serve his castellan, Ser Gregor Clegane. Realizing that she has missed her chance to kill Tywin, Arya pressures the assassin Jaqen H'ghar into aiding her escape from Harrenhal. She forces him to help her by giving him his own name as the third death he promised. She will only revoke his name when he agrees to break her and her friends out of the fortress. Arya, Hot Pie, and Gendry walk through the gates at midnight, as Jaqen instructed. They escape Harrenhal, realizing that the guards have been killed.

Robb is furious when he learns that his mother Catelyn Stark has freed his prized captive Ser Jaime Lannister. He tells her that she has betrayed him and orders her kept under guard. Catelyn has sent Brienne to escort Jaime to King's Landing to exchange him for her daughters. Brienne uses a small rowboat to evade pursuit. Robb plans to relieve Winterfell by turning Theon's men against him with an offer of mercy, issuing his orders to the bastard of the Dreadfort through Roose Bolton. Robb seeks solace in the arms of Lady Talisa Maegyr, ignoring his betrothal to House Frey.

RecapEdit

Main: The Prince of Winterfell recap

A detailed recap of the episode scene by scene.

NotesEdit

  • Yara Greyjoy refers to her brother Theon Greyjoy as the Prince of Winterfell in dialogue. Theon styled himself Prince after taking Winterfell. In A Clash of Kings Theon openly styles himself Prince of Winterfell.
  • Lord Karstark says a line about "the Father", one of the aspects of the godhead in the Faith of the Seven, but the Karstarks worship the Old Gods of the Forest. Writer Bryan Cogman responded about this: "the line about Karstark praying to the Father in 208...yeah, I should've caught that. Karstark would be strictly Old Gods, I think. If it helps, you could read it as "I'd even break my faith and pray to the bloody FATHER if that's what it took to bring my sons back"... but I'm not sure that was the intent. But maybe it was. I try my best!"[2]
  • Tyrion and, by extension, Varys, become the first ongoing characters west of the Narrow Sea to be aware of the survival of Daenerys Targaryen and the existence of her dragons.
  • Talisa's speech to Robb Stark explaining her backstory in Volantis is an invention of the TV series. In the books, Talisa's equivalent character is Jayne Westerling, a noblewoman from a minor Lannister vassal family, House Westerling. This is the only scene in which Talisa ever explains her altered backstory, but the changes do not appear to be fully researched and contain several contradictions:
    • Robb Stark is around 18 years old in Season 1, because he was conceived at the start of Robert's Rebellion, which ended 17 years ago (increasing his age in the books by two years). Numerous other times in the TV series itself, characters have mentioned that Westeros is at the end of a very long summer which has lasted for 10 years (the start of autumn was officially announced in the Season 2 premiere). When Talisa describes her backstory, she says that she and her brother went to bathe in the Rhoyne River when she was 12 years old, because it was the hottest day in the "three year summer". The 10 year long summer that ended in the Season 2 premiere began when Robb was around 9 years old. It is possible (though unlikely) that an autumn/winter/spring cycle quickly occurred during a single year, preceded by a three-year long summer (the seasons are not regular). In which case this incident could have occurred no more than 11 years ago when Robb was around 5 to 6 years old. Talisa, however, states that she was 12 at the time, meaning she would have to be at least five to six years older than Robb. In the books, Jeyne Westerling is roughly the same age as Robb Stark, and while Talisa in the TV continuity is a separate character, the actors playing Robb and Talisa were actually born within two weeks of each other. When the writers developed this altered backstory for "Talisa" including an off-hand mention of a "three year summer", they apparently didn't consider that the current summer lasted for ten full years.
    • The nobles and slaves of Volantis never mingle, and they are one of the most segregated of the Free Cities. On the other hand, Talisa's story somewhat implies that she and her brother sneaked off because their parents were away at a wedding and they weren't supposed to be in mixed company at the river, and this was just an exceptional incident in which all classes mingled at the river due to a heatwave.
    • Talisa says that drummers were playing for "coppers" on the east bank of the river. "Copper Pennies" are a Currency of the Seven Kingdoms, not Volantis. The Seven Kingdoms use the Gold Dragon coin, of which Silver Stags and Copper Pennies are smaller denominations. Volantis uses round gold coins called "honors" - there may be smaller Volantene denominations made of copper, but they have not been mentioned in the books.
    • Talisa's speech does, however, accurately relate a detail from the books, that slaves in Volantis are given facial tattoos so people can recognize them just by looking at them.

AppearancesEdit

Main: The Prince of Winterfell/Appearances

CharactersEdit

FirstEdit

DeathsEdit

CastEdit

Starring

Guest starring

Uncredited

Cast notesEdit

MarketingEdit

Promotional videoEdit

In the booksEdit

The episode covers material from A Clash of Kings and A Storm of Swords, book 2 and 3 of A Song of Ice and Fire. The episode is adapted from the following chapters of A Clash of Kings:

  • Chapter 35, Jon IV: The discovery of the dragonglass weapons.
  • Chapter 39, Arya VIII: Tywin leaves Harrenhal.
  • Chapter 42, Tyrion IX: Tyrion and Varys discuss Stannis's impending attack.
  • Chapter 48, Arya IX: Arya gives Jaqen his own name to get what she wants.
  • Chapter 50, Tyrion XI: Tyrion makes final preparations for the defense of King's Landing.
  • Chapter 55, Tyrion XII: Cersei confronts Tyrion with a captive.
  • Chapter 57, Theon V: Yara visits Winterfell to try to convince Theon to leave.
  • Chapter 69, Jon VIII: Jon and Qhorin are captured by the wildlings. Qhorin plans to make Jon a spy in their ranks.

The episode is adapted from the following chapters of A Storm of Swords:

  • Chapter 2, Jaime I: Jaime is escorted towards King's Landing by Brienne.
  • Chapter 3, Catelyn I: Catelyn is imprisoned for freeing Jaime.

There are several changes from the source material.

  • Scene 1: Yara arrives at Winterfell in A Clash of Kings chapter 56, Theon V.
  • Scene 2: Yara tries to convince Theon to leave Winterfell in A Clash of Kings chapter 56, Theon V.
  • Scene 3: Jon is captured by the wildlings in A Clash of Kings chapter 68, Jon VIII.
  • Scene 4: Robb is not a point of view character in the books. The reader does not experience the moment where he learns of Catelyn's actions.
  • Scene 5: Catelyn is imprisoned for releasing Jaime in A Storm of Swords chapter 2, Catelyn I.
  • Scene 6: Jaime is escorted towards King's Landing by Brienne in A Storm of Swords chapter 1, Jaime I.
  • Scene 7: Tywin leaves Harrenhal in A Clash of Kings chapter 38, Arya VIII.
    • Tywin's stay at Harrenhal is extended in the series compared to other events, before Arya has named a second victim.
    • Tywin leaves Ser Amory Lorch as castellan at Harrenhal rather than Ser Gregor Clegane. Lorch is already dead in the TV series at this point.
    • Arya is not present for the war council because she does not serve as Tywin's cupbearer. Instead she learns about the plans from gossip and delivering messages for the steward of the castle.
  • Scene 8: Arya encounters Rorge while looking for Jaqen in A Clash of Kings chapter 38, Arya VIII.
  • Scene 9: Arya talks baking with Hot Pie in A Clash of Kings chapter 47, Arya IX.
  • Scene 10: Qhorin plans to make Jon a spy amongst the wildling in A Clash of Kings chapter 68, Jon VIII.
  • Scene 11: Tyrion makes final preparations for the defense of King's Landing in A Clash of Kings chapter 49, Tyrion XI.
  • Scene 12: The dragonglass weapons are discovered in A Clash of Kings chapter 34, Jon IV
  • Scene 13: Arya gives Jaqen his own name to get what she wants in A Clash of Kings chapter 47, Arya IX.
  • Scene 14: Tyrion's acrimonious dinner with Cersei takes place in chapter 54, Tyrion XII.
    • Tyrion receives news of Bran and Rickon's deaths at Theon's hand before the dinner in the book.
    • They discuss the defense of King's Landing in the book as in the episode.
    • The episode omits Tyrion's plan to make Sandor a battle commander, which is part of the reason Cersei suspects that he wants to hurt Joffrey in the book.
    • Ros does not appear in the book.
    • Cersei is confused by Tyrion using secret passages to visit Shae that originate in a brothel in the book rather than by his giving a prostitute a Lannister necklace as in the episode.
    • Cersei captures a prostitute name Alayaya in the book because Tyrion has been visiting her as a pretext to use the passages to get to Shae.
    • The confrontation remains very similar to the book.
  • Scene 15:
  • Scene 16:
  • Scene 17:
  • Scene 18:
  • Scene 19:
  • Scene 20:
  • Scene 21:
  • Scene 22:

ReferencesEdit

  1. Westeros.org
  2. Bryan Cogman Q&A, WinterIsComing.net, April 24, 2013.
Game of Thrones Season 2
#01 "The North Remembers"#06 "The Old Gods and the New"
#02 "The Night Lands"#07 "A Man Without Honor"
#03 "What is Dead May Never Die"#08 "The Prince of Winterfell"
#04 "Garden of Bones"#09 "Blackwater"
#05 "The Ghost of Harrenhal"#10 "Valar Morghulis"

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