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From where I left off on the previous post, the War of the Five Kings was still ongoing in all of Westeros. Now, transitioning into season 2, a whole new set of characters and problems emerge. In the beginning, we all mourn the tragic death of Ned Stark of the House of Stark. I’m still not over it. The death of Ned Stark and symbolizes the collapse of the House of Stark. And (spoiler alert to any newbies), Catelyn Stark is also killed later on in the War of the Five Kings.
Revenge killings are a recurring theme in this show. After Ned Stark is killed, the House of Stark declares war on the House of Lannister (because, apparently, they are to blame for everything that goes wrong), in the midst of the War of the Five Kings. Negotiations take place with the Lannisters soon after. The House of Stark up until that point had secured three victories over the Lannisters. In exchange for peace, the Starks wanted the North (land north of The Wall) to gain independence. Naturally, the Lannisters rejected these terms (mainly Cersei). As the War continues, Cersei manages to wrangle herself to the throne.
Keep in mind that this War of the Five Kings also affects the land of Essos as well as Westeros. In Essos, we see Daenerys Targaryen at the helm following the death of her husband Khal Drogo. It is in this season that viewers are able to see her grow and nurture the three dragons she treasures. She takes out her plans of revenge in a more serious manner. While she was devastated over the death of her husband, she knew that she had to lead a nation towards greater power and promise. The character development of Daenerys is fascinating to watch. In the beginning, she seems unsure of her own power and influence; scared even. In season 2 and onwards, people see her developing into a more confident, ruthless leader. She is often referred to as the Mother of Dragons in a literal and figurative manner.
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Essos and Westeros undergo leadership changes and squabbles as the next fight for power rages on. Revenge killings run amok. Beheadings are of second nature. New characters shape the lives of previous ones, and old ones continue the legacy of ones before them. More is to come on Season 2 of GoT. This is something I can promise.