'Game of Thrones' Recap: The Price of Power

Money can be wielded as a weapon in Westeros - but may not be enough in the quest for the Iron Throne.

Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister in "Game of Thrones." HBO
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As Tyrion wrestles with this quandary, his brother realizes this notion in swift and violent fashion. As Jaime predicted, the sellswords gather Brienne and take her off into the forest in order to gang rape her. Hearing her scream and struggle, Jaime informs the Brave Companion's leader that Brienne comes from a line of wealth, and that her father would handsomely reward him if she were returned unharmed. Realizing he is in possession of more assets than he once thought, the sellsword stops his henchmen before any atrocities are committed.

Seeing a window of opportunity, Jaime continues to bargain, informing the sellsword that aligning himself with the Lannisters would make him exponentially wealthier than anything Robb Stark is willing to pay him, and would put him on the right side of power when the war comes to an end.

Riches. Power. Distinction. Lannister has promised the sellsword a myriad of excess. The sellsword refuses it all. And after voicing his contempt for the entire Lannister family, the sellsword puts an end to Lannister's bargaining, taking a pound of flesh in the form of the Kingslayer's hand.

In Westeros, history doesn't remember the rich, only the powerful. Acquiring control through wealth is a risky venture, especially to those who would rather swing a sword than strike a deal. Wealth is only a weapon if it's wielded correctly. As Sunday's episode demonstrated, when used improperly, it proves costly.

 Other Observations

 *The Hold Steady's version of "The Bear and the Maiden Fair" debuted at the end of the episode. It will go on sale April 20 as part of Record Store Day. You can listen to the song here.

 *Theon Greyjoy is having a rough go. Tortured, freed, flailed, nearly sodomized, freed again. Give the guy a rest.

 *Talisa continues to entertain: Telling Martin Lannister that her husband occasionally turns into a wolf and eats Lannister children. Martin Lannister: The Cowardly Lion.

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  • Update 4/15/13: This story has been updated with a link to a recording of The Hold Steady’s closing credits song.