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It was the perfect Mother's Day for Game of Thrones fans who also call themselves matriarchs. Behind the scenes, "The Bear and the Maiden Fair,", the third season's seventh episode, was a prestigious two-hander—it was written by A Song of Fire and Ice book series creator George R. R. Martin himself and directed by the ever-excellent Michelle MacLaren, a primetime Emmy nominee who's helmed some of the best Breaking Bad episodes (including the AMC hit's season 3 showstopper "One Minute"). And, unsurprisingly, that creative tandem didn't disappoint.

Outside of our Watching the Throne jurisdiction, several key Game of Thrones characters had a rough goes of it. Theon Greyjoy, still mysteriously being held captive by that torturous and so far nameless bastard, woke up from what was surely a night of cruel and unusual punishment to see a pair of beautiful women rubbing him down and reaching into his pants to "see it," meaning his famous member; to wake "it" up, so to speak, one of the girls, while naked, furiously dry-humped the suddenly content Theon as the other lady got ready for some threesome action, only to have their efforts cock-blocked by the aforementioned bastard, who taunts Theon and gets a few of his boys to hold him down so he can cut Theon's penis off with a spiky knife.

Meanwhile, though much less traumatic, an emo Arya declared "Death" as her one true god (that's what seven episodes' worth of being the Brotherhood's hostage will do to a girl), Margaery tried to make the prudish and endearingly confused Sansa feel better about having to marry Tyrion by saying he's "very experienced," and star-crossed lovers Jon Snow and Ygritte overcame some internal Wildling jealousy and a brief dispute over the Ygritte's crew's chances of winning back Winterfell to passionately tongue each other down on the way to Castle Black. "You're mine," Ygritte told her unlikely mate, "and I am yours."

It's too bad that such heartfelt tenderness wasn't the norm in an episode defined by male-and-female pairings experiencing tremendous highs, profanity-laden lows, and, yes, a bear attack. But would you have it any other way? Of course not. Now, onto the which Iron Throne seekers helped their respective causes (and received one of our coveted crowns) and which ones stumbled (and won't suffer from hat-head anytime soon).

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Written by Matt Barone (@MBarone)