One king down, and… how many to go? GAME OF THRONES has so many kings and men-who-would-be-kings, that the show can afford a little regicide to keep viewers on the edge of our seats. especially during a largely expository episode.
That hideous shadow beast that Melisandre graphically birthed at the end of last episode got right to work at the beginning of this one. No sooner had Renly Baratheon (Gethin Anthony) cut a deal with Catelyn Stark (Michelle Fairley) to align with her son Robb then the shadow beast arrived in his tent, assumed the form of Stannis Baratheon and skewered Renly through the heart. Catelyn convinced the horrified Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) to delay her revenge and flee with her, and later Brienne swore allegiance to Catelyn. The next day, Renly’s bannermen flocked to Stannis (Stephen Dillane) — all except the Tyrells led by Margaery (Natalie Dormer) and the grief-stricken king’s lover, Loras (Finn Jones). She convinced her brother to delay his vengeance, as well. I wouldn’t want to be Stannis and the Red Witch with all that frustration against me festering.