The Seven Kingdoms of Westeros were ruled once by the Targaryen dynasty – who conquered it with their dragons. When the show begins, the dragons have been long extinct and the Targaryens have been toppled by Robert Baratheon.
Robert is king and married to Cersei, from the wealthy Lannister dynasty. Lord Eddard ‘Ned’ Stark has just been appointed chief administrator or Hand of the King. What follows are dynastic battles between Targaryens, Starks, Lannisters and an assortment of other characters. To spice things up, the “Night’s Watch” must defend a massive wall of ice against mythical evils in the depths of the North.
Queen Cersei and her twin Jaime fornicate furiously. Bran, Ned’s little son, happens to see them, so Jaime pushes him down the tower. Cersei gets Robert poisoned, killing him. Ned is beheaded, on the orders of her devilish son and now king, Joffrey. Meanwhile, in the far east, Daenerys Targaryen rises from the ashes of her husband’s pyre – literally, coming out alive with three baby dragons.
Ramsay Bolton, the evil bastard of cruel Lord Roose Bolton, captures Winterfell, house of the Starks. Bran, who can no longer walk but is guided by visions, heads to the Wall where his brother – and Ned’s bastard son – Jon Snow is. Jon goes beyond the Wall to the cold north falls in love with a ‘wildling’ Ygritte.
Robert’s brothers Stannis and Renly both want to be king. Stannis, with the help of Melisandre, a woman with magical powers, kills Renly.
The bloodiest ‘Red Wedding’ massacre of all time: where Robb Stark (Ned’s heir), his pregnant wife Talisa, mother Catelyn, and most of their army are murdered at a wedding organised by a Lord Walder Frey, at the Lannisters’ commands. More gross: Theon Greyjoy, who had been like a brother to Robb, betrays the Starks, but is captured by Ramsay. Theon is tortured and castrated, till he eventually goes kind of mad and forgets his identity.
Another wedding-day murder. This time it’s the evil little king Joffrey who FINALLY gets poisoned on his wedding day. The blame falls on Tyrion Lannister or the Imp. He escapes prison, murders his dad in the loo and is on the run. Sansa Stark, who unknowingly aided the King’s murder, is also on the run. She’s joined by Petyr Baelish, a seemingly evil genius! Sansa’s sister Arya reaches the free cities of Braavos, where assassins are trained. Meanwhile, Daenerys has built a huge army in the east with plans to recapture Westeros.
From HT Brunch, April 12
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