Posted April 29, 2014 by Yuri Mangahas in Movies/TV

GAME OF THRONES Review: ‘Oathkeeper’ Diverges The Story From The Books

Previously On Game of Thrones:

Chaos descends as the entire capital is shocked by Joffrey Baratheon’s death, prompting Cersei to have Tyrion arrested and Tywin initiate a blockade as well as a trial against his son. Littlefinger then utilizes this to extract Sansa out of King’s Landing. Meanwhile, the Wildlings raid and sack another village, much to the Night’s Watch’s disgust. Furthermore, news of the mutiny at Craster’s Keep reaches Jon Snow, who urges the Watch to send a party to eliminate the separatists. Finally, Daenerys arrives at Meereen, and sends a strong message to its inhabitants.


Divergence. It is commonly defined as the method of separating two or more aspects from one another, making each distinct and unique. Oathkeeper personifies that idea. There are plot alterations, and inclusions to this episode which we have not seen in the books yet. Indeed, change is coming, and it might affect the way we follow this series.

Truth be told, it will.

Apart from the aforementioned point, this episode is also an exploration of Jaime’s newfound self, as well as his determination to traverse an honorable path. Last week’s events might have tarnished his character development a bit, but I’m glad he’s still portrayed in the same light that we’re rooting him for.

More of those two later. Let’s recap a bit.

At The Wall, Samwell Tarly informs Jon Snow of Bran Stark’s current whereabouts. Furthermore, the latter has been ordered by Alliser Thorne to form a raiding party against the mutineers – with the intent of keeping him far from becoming the next Commander of The Watch. Unknownst to them, the mutineers had captured Bran Stark and his party.

Meanwhile, Littlefinger reveals to Sansa Stark the circumstances surrounding Joffrey’s death, and tells her his plans of bringing her to the Vale. At Meereen, Daenerys begins her attack against the masters, and concocts justice to them. While all of these take place, Margaery Tyrell uses her position to build a relationship with the next King, Tommen, in an attempt to solidify their connection to the Throne. Finally, Jaime Lannister meets Tyrion, and sends his friend Brienne in a quest to rescue Sansa Stark by giving him his sword, Oathkeeper.

Since we’re talking about the idea of divergence, there are five events in this episode that deviate entirely from its source material:

  • Bran Stark and his party gets captured by the mutineers. This never happened in the books at all, as his journey is an extended walkthrough of the landscape outside The Wall. This is understandable, as to not prevent viewers from getting dragged by his plot development.
  • The mutineers were given a side-plot of their own, which is nice, as to create ample tension abound the growing Wildling crisis.
  • Jon Snow gets sent to Craster’s Keep in an attempt to expel the mutineers. Again, this builds tension, and sets possibilities for more action next week. One probability we should consider though is the chance that Bran and Jon would meet. In the books, this two have never met after Jon left for The Wall. This remains to be seen.
  • Locke – the man who amputated Jaime’s sword hand – becomes the newest member of the Watch. Unknownst to Jon and the others, he was sent by Roose Bolton to eliminate what is left of the Stark threat, presumably including Jon Snow.
  • This should be interesting. One of Craster’s newborn kids gets taken by a White Walker, and is offered to the Night King, who christens the boy as one of them. This gives us an idea as to how they replicate. This is also our first glimpse of the Land of Always Winter, as we have never witnessed this in the novels.
The script in this episode is also exemplary, and continues to deliver impact like the previous screenplays did. There are also memorale sequences: The entire Meereen segment is nicely done. That sewer scene brought a sense of claustrophobia to my end. Furthermore, the image of the masters’ crucifixion as well as that wide-angle shot of Daenerys above the capital is chilling. Jaime’s parting with Brienne is probably the saddest part. It was a bittersweet moment, with Jaime seemingly hurting at the sight of his good friend leaving, and Brienne holding on to her oath. Well, some things aren’t meant to last – an ode which we should apply when it comes to Thrones.
Oathkeeper is a strong episode. It succeeds in filling in the gaps that the previous episode failed to contain, as well as making the TV show a distinct product from its source material.
8.5 Valyrian Swords Out of 10
Catch us next week as we review another GoT episode. Here’s a sneak peek for the upcoming episode, ‘First of His Name.’

Yuri Mangahas

Yuri is magnanimously juggling between two managerial jobs: A technical manager position for an advertising/copy-writing company, and an associate editorial position for a fashion and lifestyle magazine. Nevertheless, he still finds time taking photos and seeking for geek nirvana.