Cast & Crew
Ser Jaime Lannister
Queen Cersei Lannister
Ser Jorah Mormont
Lady Catelyn Stark
Prince Joffrey Baratheon
Kraznys mo Nakloz
White Walker No. 1
Valar Dohaeris Photos
A perfectly calibrated masterclass demonstration of how well these showrunners understand the material, its pull and its rhythms, and the patient dedication of the audience they have summoned to join them around the campfire.
So yeah, a nice hour of television. A few things left me cold, though. I find it impossible to care about the Stannis Baretheon storyline.
This wasn't the kind of episode fans will be clamoring to rewatch, but as a table-setter for the season it's aces, establishing plot and tone with expert craftsmanship.
That's just life, isn't it? You live, you serve and then you die, hopefully not by zombies.
The episode took on the air of the very best caper flicks: the clearing of throats, the setting of stages, and, most important, the reintroducing of the gang.
With even more characters and more locales than before, "Valar Dohaeris" is particularly full.
[A] solid opening considering the tall task it was handed of reintroducing and establishing the various characters in Westeros.
It was a deceptively quiet episode, more a gathering of forces and wills than an action-packed opener.
Overall, this episode was a bit slow for me-it felt like 60 minutes of set-up, albeit setup for awesome things to come. I think I might've enjoyed it more had I not read the books and wasn't able to anticipate future plot points.
Despite the slow pace, it features some great moments, dramatic twists in fortune (hinting at Stannis and Davos who I have left unmentioned) and a heated assassination attempt.
It's a solid start to a solid show, and if all the stars align, the very best book in the series... will shine throughout both Season 3 and 4, gracefully making its bloody way to our television screens and thus to our hearts.