"Game of Thrones," Season 2, Episode 3

Season 2, Episode 3


When David Simon expressed skepticism over the value of reviewing TV shows episode-by-episode, the Internet's recappers, critics and fans rallied like the loyal banner men around Robb Stark or Renly Baratheon. As the creator of one of the richest, densest TV series ever made, Simon can't exactly argue his case from a position of strength: "The Wire," like such other sprawling, intricately-plotted shows as "Lost," "Battlestar Galactica" and "Game of Thrones," benefits from recaps to help viewers sort out the complex storylines. Plus, recaps can serve as the Internet's equivalent of morning-after water cooler conversation and sometimes even offer a little analytical insight.

This week's chapter, "What Was Dead May Never Die," includes a couple of sword-clashing fight scenes and some delicious skullduggery, but also an intriguing through-line involving the varieties of power, particularly female power - and ironically, Danearys isn't even on this one.

Catelyn Stark, for instance, serves as her son's envoy to Renly Baratheon, who's certainly a more likeable conteder to the throne than Joffrey or Stannis. When dissed by one of Renly's men, Catelyn snaps "My son is fighting a war, not playing at one" and though she may not hold power, she speaks with authority.