Game of Thrones: Season 2, Episode 2

The Night Lands (8 Apr. 2012)

TV Episode  -   -  Adventure | Drama | Fantasy
8.2
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 6,027 users  
Reviews: 7 user | 15 critic

Arya makes friends with Gendry. Tyrion tries to take control of the small council. Theon arrives at his home, Pyke, in order to persuade his father into helping Robb with the war. Jon tries to investigate Craster's secret.

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Storyline

In the wake of a bloody purge in the capital, Tyrion chastens Cersei for alienating the king's subjects. On the road north, Arya shares a secret with Gendry, a Night's Watch recruit. With supplies dwindling, one of Dany's scouts returns with news of their position. After nine years as a Stark ward, Theon Greyjoy reunites with his father Balon, who wants to restore the ancient Kingdom of the Iron Islands. Davos enlists Salladhor Saan, a pirate, to join forces with Stannis and Melisandre for a naval invasion of King's Landing. Written by JustHayden

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8 April 2012 (USA)  »

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Trivia

The episode title refers to the term which the Dothraki use for the land of the dead. See more »

Goofs

When Sam and the other Rangers discuss things such as corpses farting, just before the end there's a shot over Sam's left shoulder. At the back of his fur coat can be seen the collar of a padded winter jacket sticking up with some sort of metal ring in it. When he says something about turnips and walks away, the collar's been tucked in. See more »

Quotes

Shae: And I tell him the story of how we meet.
Lord Varys: To find so lovely a creature working in your father's kitchens - it almost beggars belief.
Tyrion Lannister: Strange things do happen. You should taste her fish pie.
Shae: I don't think Lord Varys likes fish pie.
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Written and Performed by Ramin Djawadi
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User Reviews

 
"The Night Lands", a.k.a. "The Incest Episode"
3 August 2013 | by (Austria) – See all my reviews

The Night Lands is an episode that has a lot of great stuff, but also more than just a few disappointing aspects that mitigated my general view on it. Most of all, they decided to focus on sex even more than usual, especially increasing the incestuous content to an unsurpassed high. The inbreeding parts don't get really explicit, but just the mentioning of it, together with the baby-slaughtering in the previous episode, leads me to believe that this season of Game of Thrones is going to be a lot more unsuitable for children than before. That's not to say that I disliked seeing Carice van Houten nude, I'm solely questioning its necessity, especially since that particular scene wasn't even included in the novels. Anyway, as long as you don't watch it with your kids, the episode is still really nice entertainment.

First of all, we have scenes with Arya again and they are some of the funniest moments the show has had up to that point. The conversation between her and Gendry, bastard son of the late King Robert, was absolutely natural and uplifting and definitely one of the most enjoyable scenes in The Night Lands, whose best part was undoubtedly Peter Dinklage's Tyrion who was present in two scenes and nailed it each time. The first one, him having dinner with Janos Slynt, the Commander of the City Watch, is hilarious and so well acted; the second one is another debate between him and Cersei that made me laugh my arse off (to stay in Game of Thrones British English) while also giving important background information. Another very good part of this episode was Littlefinger solacing Ros, which soon turned out to be a bit more than that and showed off Littlefinger's attitude so perfectly well. What happened when Theon Greyjoy visited his family is one of the incest facets the episode has to offer while actually being very entertaining and interesting since it gives us a lot of character insight.

So much for the good parts about The Night Lands; the not bad, but not really good scenes were basically everything I didn't mention in the previous paragraph. Dragonstone, the freshly introduced new setting, already got a bit boring in this episode, however, if you haven't read the source material, it will definitely help you to understand all the new characters better. The attribute 'boring' can also be given to the scenes across the Narrow Sea where Daenerys and her khalasar of some two dozen people and most of them women are planning to attack the rest of Westeros. I'm utterly convinced that this plan will work.

While not boring, the Night's Watch scenes were unappealing to me right from the start as unfunny fart jokes were made, while Kit Harrington did a really fine acting job and proved that he can be just a tiny bit amusing as well. The Night Lands ended in a scene with him that is bringing up the question: Is every Game of Thrones episode now going to end with a baby being killed?

My conclusion: I did enjoy this episode, yet I found it to be one of the weakest episodes of the show yet. There were too much things happening that I didn't like and if it weren't for the numerous and circumstantial sex scenes, this would've easily been the most boring Game of Thrones episode yet. Keep in mind that my rating always augments a bit because of the show's visuals that never fail to impress me.


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