Wow. I’m late in posting this Game of Clothes review this week because I’ve watched the episode four times and I am still shook. Episode 4, The Spoils of War was without a doubt, the most explosive episode so far this season. (See what I did there – explosive? Fire?) So; sorry for being a little late, but please do join us on this breakdown of Episode 4; just in time to refresh your mind for this week’s episode!
This week is the first time we’ve seen the Tarly’s in armour. It’s simple, plain and pared back, with the Tarly’s sigil present at Randyll’s left shoulder. It’s simple armour for a simple house; we’re got touches of the red house colour appear in Randyll’s cloak and Dickon’s neck scarf, but otherwise it’s plain and practical. There’s a really big contrast here with Jaime and the Tarly’s; Jaime’s samurai inspired Lannister armour looks even more spectacular beside them. It’s very clear who’s in charge here.
Ah, everyone’s favourite crazy Queen – Cersei. We’re sorry to keep repeating this, but she’s back with another black dress. This was a great look for Cersei; the textured squares of the leather dress were visually interesting, and the fabric looked so heavy and constricting. We also got to see Tycho Nestoris, played by Sherlock aficionado, Mark Gatiss. I also really like Tycho’s costume; it’s great to see that the designer, Michelle Clapton, plays on Tycho’s foreign origins; he doesn’t look like a Lord of Westeros, and I think this is the first time we’ve seen a ruff so far in Thrones. It’s a distinctly different shape to any of the men’s wear seen before on the show, and the rich bronze tones of the doublet are great; he’s wearing gold to collect the gold. Also, notice the little coin purse on his belt – I love all of these little details that really bring a character to life.
Arya is home! Yes, we have yet another Stark back in Winterfell, and it’s so good. Her and Sansa’s reunion was one of the sweetest on the show so far, and I’ve always enjoyed the contrast of Arya and Sansa; one is a fighter and assassin, and the other is becoming a major political player. Enemies of the North had better watch out now they’re back together – take note, Littlefinger. I’d also read an article throughout the week by Buzzfeed, talking about Sansa’s costume, and including comments from the show’s amazing costume designer, Michelle Clapton. You can read it here; it’s a really interesting breakdown, and definitely outlined some things about Sansa’s costume that I missed. Her belt is representative of her taking back her bodily autonomy, after everything that’s happened to her. Her dress is tightly laced, showing no skin, and her belt is tight, wide and restrictive. It’s a reclamation of her own body, which, as we know, has been majorly mistreated by both Joffrey and Ramsey. It’s a beautiful design choice, and one that’s really powerful for a character who has been through so much abuse.
Arya’s new costume is also fantastic; and super reminiscent of her big brother, Jon. They’re even wearing the same hairdo! It’s also reminiscent of Brienne’s formal clothing; just take a look at this comparison from one of Brienne’s Kings Landing outfits.
This tunic and skirt combination is a shape worn predominantly by males in the series; we’ve seen Jon and Sam sporting similar looks, but it’s also a shape that’s ideal for movement and fighting. It’s totally unrealistic to put Arya in a gown like Sansa’s, or in anything that impedes her movement. However, this is, without a doubt, the smartest we’ve seen Arya in a long time. The skirt is paired with trousers underneath, and it’s spilt, allowing for total ease of movement in her spar with Brienne. She looks like a Stark; she isn’t no one anymore. She’s back to being Arya Stark of Winterfell and boy, are we glad to see it.
Back at Dragonstone, Dany is still trying to get Jon to bend the knee, and Jon is busy showing Dany some cave paintings that prove the White Walkers existence. Monologues about saving the world aside; their costumes are pretty similar to the ones we’ve seen so far this season. However, Dany’s been given an ice blue cloak here, rather than the Targaryen red we’ve seen her wearing previously. The black coat/dress she’s wearing here also has blue and silver undertones; it’s beautiful and the fabric seems not too dissimilar to Varys’s new outfit for Dragonstone. Dany’s always worn blues; they’ve long been associated with the character, but ice blue is a colour often associated with Lyanna Stark – Jon’s mother, who ran away with Rhaegar Targaryen, Dany’s brother. Lyanna’s crown of winter blue roses is a symbol that’s often brought up in conversation, as it’s representative of the relationship between Targaryen and Stark. While this might be a bit of a stretch, I found it interesting that this colours been re-introduced to Dany’s wardrobe when her relationship with Jon is beginning to blossom. Hmm; we shall see.
I would talk about costume in the final scene with Drogon, the Lannister armies and the Dothraki, but all the costumes got very…on fire. But before the onslaught, I just have to say that the Lannister armour is by far my favourite. There’s a clear Japanese influence with the armour, that’s mixed with a more traditional medieval European style; plus, the colours red and gold are hard to beat when you want to make a real statement. Of course, this statement is roasted to high heaven, and cut apart by the scimitar-style weapons of the Dothraki. I loved this contrast; the Dothraki ride into battle in leather and fabric; they’re such fearsome warriors that they just don’t need, or want to, wear any style of armour, or ‘metal suits’ as they call them. In contrast, we see the Lannister army in their plate and chainmail literally shaking with fear. It really did suck to see Jaime lose so many men, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t whispering ‘Yes Queen’ as Dany destroyed the Lannister army/
As this is a little late, we’re on the brink of another episode! I’m changing up my posting schedule a bit, so you can expect the next Game of Clothes instalment on Tuesday, the day after the episode airs. I’m excited already.
Side note; Dany, PLEASE GET SOME ARMOUR. We’ve seen dragons being taken down this season, and you may be invincible to fire, but you ain’t to arrows. Dany please.
Till next time,