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Game of Thrones season two aired in 2012 and saw a number of key characters join the world of the HBO and Sky Atlantic drama. Stannis Baratheon (played by Stephen Dillane) join the HBO and Sky series in season two as the War of the Five Kings began. Game of Thrones viewers who need a recap of the events of the series before season eight kicks off can read on for all the top moments from season two explained.
What happened in Game of Thrones season 2?
Game of Thrones season two follows on from the finale of the first series, which sees Cersei Lannister (played by Lena Headey) trying to retain the throne for her son Joffrey (Jack Gleeson) as rumours fly around about the boy-king being a baseborn child of incest.
This leads to the War of the Five Kings, which sees Joffrey battling against Robb Stark (Richard Madden), Renly Baratheon (Gethin Anthony), Balon Greyjoy (Patrick Malahide) and Stannis.
Stannis is first introduced in Game of Thrones season two, as are a number of the people in his army.
The series also introduced Margaery Tyrell (Natalie Dormer), who starts season two married to Renly, even though he is gay and is having an affair with her brother Loras (Finn Jones), and ends it engaged to Joffrey.
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Members of Stannis’ army who we first meet in Game of Thrones season two include his Hand, Ser Davos Seaworth (Liam Cunningham) and Melisandre (Caris van Houten), a priestess of the Lord of Light.
In Game of Thrones’ second series, the latter is responsible for the first of the Five Kings dying.
Melisandre gives birth to what Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie), who is also introduced in GoT season two, calls “a shadow with the face of Stannis Baratheon.”
This shadow assassinates Renly in the presence of Brienne and Catelyn Stark (Michelle Fairley).
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Game of Thrones season 2 recap: Renly is killed by a shadow
Catelyn is there as part of a diplomatic mission to persuade the Baratheons to join Robb, who is at this point undefeated in battle, in a united front against Joffrey.
Following Renly’s death, Catelyn tasks Brienne with transporting her prisoner Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) to King’s Landing, where he will be swapped for Arya Stark (Maisie Williams), who is actually not there and in hiding working for Tywin Lannister (Charles Dance) and Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner), who is engaged to the increasingly sadistic Joffrey.
Stannis eventually makes it to King’s Landing, where he is soundly defeated by Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) and a stock of Wildfire – though rather than gaining plaudits for the Battle of Blackwater, Tyrion is demoted, with Tywin taking his place as Hand.
Meanwhile at Winterfell, Theon Greyjoy (Alfie Allen) betrays the Starks, takes the castle to try and gain the favour of his father Balon and pretends to kill Bran (Isaac Hempstead-Wright) and Rickon Stark (Art Parkinson) – though they have actually escaped thanks to Osha (Natalia Tena) and Hodor (Kristian Nairn).
However, Theon is betrayed by his own men, leading to a few seasons of misery for the character.
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In Essos, Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) and the Dothrakis are traipsing through the desert known as the Red Waste following the death of Khal Drogo (Jason Momoa).
They are sheltered in the city of Qarth, where Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen) counsels her that it is better to win hearts and minds then take by force – an approach that will define Dany over the next few seasons of Game of Thrones.
Elsewhere, Jon Snow (Kit Harington) is on the other side of the Wall, where he is captured by the Wildlings.
Also south of the Wall is Sam Tarly (John Bradley), who features in the last scene of Game of Thrones season two when he sees a White Walker for the first time.
Game of Thrones season 2 is streaming on NOW TV
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