"Game of Thrones" Season 4, episode 7, "Mockingbird" continues the recent trend of shocking deaths and excellent performances by Peter Dinklage as Tyrion. In "Mockingbird," there is an interesting development for Tyrion's choice of trial by combat while there are some truly great moments at the Vale and at Meereen.
Warning: Full "Game of Thrones" Season 4 spoilers ahead.
Tyrion Finds His Champion
Tyrion and Jaime share a moment inside the former's cell and, despite their differences, the siblings are closer than ever. Tyrion makes reference to his first trial by combat victory in "Game of Thrones" Season 1 but Jaime can't be his champion. Peter Dinklage continues his strong work as the look of pain and sadness that comes across Tyrion's face as he realizes he might not make it out alive is subtle yet powerful.
With all the talk of the the Mountain, Gregor Clegane returns to "Game of Thrones" Season 4 and he is one formidable foe. Cersei has her champion but will Bronn want to risk his life a second time for Tyrion?
Unfortunately, Tryion strikes out again. Cersei has gotten to Bronn and the sellsword's price is too high for Tyrion. Bronn has a wife, a potential castle and gold and won't risk all of that to be Tyrion's champion.
When it looks like Tyrion's fate is sealed, the Red Viper pays a visit to the seemingly doomed Tyrion. Oberyn shares a story of his trip to Casterly Rock when he was a child and his disappointment in finding out the newborn Tyrion was not a monster. Unlike the previous visitors, the third time is the charm for Tyrion and he has found his champion in Oberyn. For the Red Viper, the decision is his chance to avenge the death of his sister but that's not to say Oberyn was not moved by Tyrion's plight.
Another One Bites The Dust
The body count steadily rises in "Game of Thrones" Season 4 as Lysa makes a shocking exit through the Moon Door. Sansa just wants to build a snow replica of Winterfell but Robin just wants a Moon Door. The young Lord of the Vale is obsessed with making people fly and when Sansa tries to include her cousin in building a snow fort but that leads to the snow Winterfell's destruction. Sansa slaps Robin and that may have been the most satisfying slap since Tyrion slapped the dearly departed Joffrey in "Game of Thrones" Season 1.
Littlefinger is still in love with Catelyn which leads to a very fateful, and calculated, kiss. Littlefinger knows Lysa's rage and jealousy will lead to her threatening Sansa with a trip through the Moon Door and he is not disappointed to find out his plan has worked. As Petyr goes to console Lysa he shares one last truth before pushing her out of the Moon Door; his heart will always belong to Catelyn.
The Queen of Meereen Says Yes To Daario
Daario has won over Daenerys despite her best efforts to remain unmoved by his advances. I liked the change from the "A Song of Ice and Fire" series as it gives Daenerys a sense of power and purpose. Instead of waiting around and sending Daario on a useless mission before taking him as her lover, she chooses to get what she wants while also giving Daario a new assignment to take the Second Sons and recapture Yunkai.
Jorah serves as the voice of reason as the Queen of Meereen refuses to show mercy to the slave masters but instead opts for diplomacy, giving the slave masters one more chance to live in her world. Hizdahr zo Loraq will serve as ambassador on the mission and will play an important role in Daenerys' quest to become a good ruler.
Odd Couples On The Road
As Arya and the Hound's time on the road gets darker, Pod and Brienne add some much needed comedy to "Game of Thrones" Season 4. "Nothing is nothing," says Arya to a dying man as words of consolation and motivation to fight and stay alive. The bandits responsible for the attack ambush the duo but killing the Hound is no easy task and it turns out the two bandits are old acquaintances of Arya's. Arya kills Rorge, one of the prisoners along with Jaqen, while Biter lives up to his name and takes a chunk out of the Hound before dying.
The Hound's bite wound looks like it will become infected after he refuses Arya's help and he shares the story of how he was burned by his brother, the Mountain, and how his father lied about what really happened.
Speaking of old acquaintances, Hot Pie makes an appearance after serving Pod and Brienne some kidney pie. The scene was a way to add some levity to "Mockingbird" but it also served a purpose. The new favorite odd couple now have a destination thanks to Podrick's training as Tyrion's squire. Podrick is able to correctly figure out where Arya and the Hound are headed.
Selyse Sees The Light
Selyse and Melisandre did not have much to do during "Mockingbird," their bathroom scene was an interesting one as it shed some light on the Lord of Light and the Red Priestess' plans for Shireen. The scene is another new one and could signal a different fate for Shireen than what occurs in the novels.