Death Visits 'Game of Thrones' Season 4 and It's Wild


Game of Death: “The Mountain and the Viper” started “Game of Thrones” Season 4 off slow before making way for some intriguing character drama. Sansa’s handling of Littlefinger allowed her portrayer, Sophie Turner, to shine. 

In an empowering moment for the Stark family, Sansa descended the stairs in a new raven-inspired frock, a spark of newfound confidence bewitching her. Daenerys’ rash judgment of Jorah was a sad end to their compelling relationship.

It was also surprising, given her usually thoughtful verdicts. Startling with its tenderness was Missandei and Grey Worm’s developing relationship, one of the only legit romances on the show these days.

Of course, the biggest highlight was the closing battle between The Viper and The Mountain as they faced off in a brutal fight that took viewers on a remarkable roller coaster. Peter Dinkalge’s performance during Tyrion’s “beetle” monologue and the trial by combat was simply spellbinding.

Also making major waves was Pedro Pascal’s dazzling turn as Oberyn Martel. His rhythmic chants filled the screen with stellar passion. It is hard to imagine that Season 4 will offer a more chill-inducing scene.

Not So Dreadful: “Demimonde” was a decent “Penny Dreadful” episode that moved the storyline along with a steady flow. Dorian Grey and his flirtation with Vanessa seemed to be hitting its stride. Meanwhile, Ethan romanced Brona by taking her to the theater, where an excellently choreographed sequence demonstrated the behind-the-scenes workings of the era’s stage productions.

Brona seems destined to become The Creature’s bride, as Dr. Frankenstein could justify her transformation in light of her health crisis. One thing that has not been addressed is why Ethan does not seem concerned about contracting her tuberculosis. 

It is a nagging question that has not even been acknowledged. Sir Malcom’s scenes with the “good doctor” were illuminating, offering insight into both characters. It was the episode’s ending moments that would shock with a truly surprising twist. 

Return of the Beast: Welcome back, “Beauty and the Beast” fans! What a return it turned out to be. The series’ biggest problems continue to be Vincent’s self-pity and raging angst. Why others work so tirelessly to advocate for him is mystifying. 

All he does to reward them when they succeed is inflict them with further misery. If he shows a little emotional variance, it will help immensely. Tess and JT were in fine form, bringing the show levity and a romantic entanglement worth rooting for.

Not Much Further to Go: It was the episode before the penultimate, and compared to the previous episode of “Fargo,” it was a slower affair. The monologues particularly meandered. The best moment in “The Heap” came when Sam Hess’ widow, Gina, stormed into Lester’s office demanding answers for her insurance claim being denied.

Kate Walsh’s exuberant performance provided the jolt of energy this episode of “Fargo” needed, making one wonder why she has not been a more integral part of the series. After seeing her explosively entertaining scenes and the character’s combustible energy, watching Gus Grimly ramble on felt like watching paint dry.

Next Week’s TV: “Pretty Little Liars” returns on Tuesday. Stay tuned to the TV Rundown for coverage of the series’ fifth season, and check the review of last season by clicking here