The Climb (Game of Thrones)

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"The Climb"
Game of Thrones episode
Episode no.Season 3
Episode 6
Directed byAlik Sakharov
Written byDavid Benioff
D. B. Weiss
Featured musicRamin Djawadi
Cinematography byDavid Katznelson
Editing byOral Norrie Ottey
Original air dateMay 5, 2013 (2013-05-05)
Running time53 minutes
Guest appearances
Episode chronology
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"Kissed by Fire"
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"The Bear and the Maiden Fair"
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"The Climb" is the sixth episode of the third season of the HBO medieval fantasy television series Game of Thrones. The 26th episode of the series overall, it was written by series co-creators David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, and directed by Alik Sakharov. It first aired on HBO on May 5, 2013.

The episode's title comes from climbing of the wall by Jon Snow and Ygritte, and also the references from dialogue between Lord Petyr Baelish and Lord Varys.

The episode marks the final appearance of Esmé Bianco (Ros).


In King's Landing

Meeting with Olenna, Tywin threatens to appoint Loras to the Kingsguard, thereby renouncing his right to inheritance and marriage and leaving House Tyrell without a male heir, and reluctantly she consents to Loras and Cersei's marriage.

Tyrion accuses Cersei of trying to have him killed during the Battle of the Blackwater, but deduces it was Joffrey who ordered his death and Cersei tells him he is not in danger now that Tywin is the Hand. In private, Tyrion informs Sansa of his father's plans for them, with Shae present.

Baelish tells Varys he has given Ros to a friend, whom we learn is Joffrey, to kill for his pleasure. Sansa watches tearfully as Baelish departs by ship, losing her chance at leaving the capital.

In the Riverlands

Arriving at the Brotherhood's hideout, Melisandre is shocked to learn of Beric's six resurrections, and buys Gendry for her blood magic spell involving kings blood. Arya declares Melisandre is a witch but Melisandre says that there is a darkness inside Arya, seeing eyes she will “shut forever” and declares they will meet again.

At Riverrun, Robb and his advisors discuss an alliance with Lame Lothar Frey and Black Walder Rivers. Lord Walder Frey's demands include a formal apology from Robb, the Harrenhal, and for Edmure to marry one of his daughters.

At Harrenhal, Roose Bolton agrees to send Jaime to King's Landing if Jaime assures Tywin that Bolton had nothing to do with his maiming, and keeps Brienne under arrest for abetting treason.

In the North

Bran defuses tensions between Osha and Meera, and Jojen tells Bran his vision of Jon being on the other side of the wall and surrounded by enemies.

Torturing Theon, the boy threatens to sever his finger if he cannot guess the boy's identity and their location. After his finger is flayed for several wrong guesses, Theon guesses the boy is a Karstark and he is being tortured at Karhold for betraying Robb. The boy pretends Theon was correct before admitting his torture is solely for his amusement.

Beyond the Wall

En route to the Wall, Sam shows Gilly the dragonglass dagger he found and tells her about Castle Black.

Ygritte reveals she is aware Jon remains loyal to the Night's Watch, but tells him their loyalty to each other is greater. As Tormund's party climbs the wall, Ygritte inadvertently causes an avalanche that kills some wildlings and leaves her and Jon hanging by their rope. Before Orell cuts the rope, Jon secures himself to the Wall and reaches the top with Ygritte, where they embrace.


"The Climb" is the sixth episode of the season written by showrunners David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, and 18th overall. It is based upon George R. R. Martin's novel A Storm of Swords, namely, chapters 30, 35, 37, and 48 (Jon IV, Catelyn IV, Jaime V, and Samwell III).[1]

Gilly's baby, appearing in the fourth episode and in "The Climb"'s first scene, was played by ten months-old Arya Hasson – named after Arya Stark – from the Waterside in Derry.[2]



"The Climb" set a new record for Game of Thrones in ratings, the fourth consecutive episode to establish a new series high. 5.5 million viewers watched the premiere airing, with 1.27 million additional viewers watching the second airing. The episode also set a new series high in viewers aged 18–49, with a rating of 2.9.[3] In the United Kingdom, the episode was seen by 0.926 million viewers on Sky Atlantic, being the channel's highest-rated broadcast that week.[4]

Critical reception

"The Climb" was met with positive reviews from critics. Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes surveyed 21 reviews of the episode and judged 90% of them to be positive with an average score of 7.9 out of 10. The website's critical consensus reads "Tywin Lannister and Olenna Tyrell steal the show with their exquisite negotiation as 'The Climb' builds towards the Wildlings' death-defying scaling of The Wall."[5] Writing for IGN, Matt Fowler gave the episode an 8.8/10, writing "This week's Game of Thrones started off slow, but then built to a roaring crescendo."[6] Two reviews were published by The A.V. Club. David Sims gave the episode a "B" rating for people new to the series,[7] while Emily VanDerWerff rated the episode a "B+" for people who have read the novels.[8]

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Nominee(s) Result
2013 Hollywood Post Alliance Awards Outstanding Sound – Television Paula Fairfield, Brad Katona, Jed Dodge, Onnalee Blank and Mathew Waters Won
2014 Visual Effects Society Outstanding Compositing in a Broadcast Program Kirk Brillon, Steve Gordon, Geoff Sayer, Winston Lee Won
Outstanding Created Environment in a Broadcast Program Patrick Zentis, Mayur Patel, Nitin Singh, Tim Alexander Won


  1. ^ Garcia, Elio; Antonsson, Linda (May 9, 2013). "EP306: The Climb". Retrieved November 11, 2014.
  2. ^ "Game of Thrones role for baby Arya". Derry Journal. 7 May 2013. Retrieved 8 May 2013.
  3. ^ Kondolojy, Amanda (May 7, 2013). "Sunday Cable Ratings: 'Game of Thrones' Wins Night + 'Ax Men', 'Mad Men', 'Army Wives', 'The Client List' & More". TV by the Numbers. Archived from the original on May 10, 2013. Retrieved May 7, 2013.
  4. ^ "Top 10 Ratings (6 - 12 May 2013)". BARB. Retrieved January 19, 2017.
  5. ^ "The Climb". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved May 3, 2016.
  6. ^ Fowler, Matt (May 5, 2013). "Game of Thrones: "The Climb" Review". IGN. Retrieved May 6, 2013.
  7. ^ Sims, David (May 5, 2013). ""The Climb" (for newbies)". The A.V. Club. Retrieved May 6, 2013.
  8. ^ VanDerWerff, Emily (May 5, 2013). ""The Climb" (for experts)". The A.V. Club. Retrieved May 6, 2013.

External links