The Wheel of Time 1×05 Review: “Blood Calls Blood”

Rand & Mat in “Blood Calls Blood” (Image: The Wheel of Time season 1 episode 5)

After a long journey, the heroes converge at the fabled city of Tar Valon in “Blood Calls Blood.”

After showing the aftermath of the attack of Logain’s (Alvaro Morte) army on the Aes Sedai camp in “The Dragon Reborn”, The Wheel of Time jumps forward a month in “Blood Calls Blood”. The main cast remains split up into three separate groups as they converge on the fabled city of Tar Valon, but not much has significantly changed in the month-long time jump. While the episode was overall light on action, the emotional moments and the performances of every cast member really made the episode memorable.

Moiraine (Rosamund Pike), Lan (Daniel Henney), and Nynaeve (Zoe Robins) arrive at the White Tower first, as the rest of the Aes Sedai transfer Logain in their procession through the city. Nynaeve continues to deal with the manifestation of her powers and finds herself coming into conflict with Moiraine about her potential integration into the Aes Sedai. Nynaeve’s conflicts regarding her powers and the Aes Sedai are interesting, particularly when Liandrin (Kate Fleetwood) attempts to recruit her over to her side of the group. In addition, the conflict between Moiraine and Liandrin continues to grow, and it will be interesting to see how it progresses.

The most heartbreaking storyline of the episode is that of Stepin (Peter Franzen), who is struggling with his grief over the death of his Aes Sedai partner. It’s great to see Lan and the other warders attempt to comfort him, and the stories he tells about his partner and how she changed his life for the better successfully convey the depth of their bond. The episode ends with Stepin taking his life, and Lan’s grief as he breaks down at the funeral is compelling and heartbreaking.

Lan & Stepin in “Blood Calls Blood”

Meanwhile, Rand (Josha Stradowski) and Mat (Barney Harris) also arrive in the city. Mat continues to deal with the madness inflicted on him and his guilt over his actions that led to the slaughter of a family. Rand continues to remain supportive of Mat and the strength of their bond continues to remain a highlight of the series. Mat’s continued struggle is concerning, but hopefully, he will be able to get the help that he needs to recover soon.

While in the city, Rand makes a new friend, an Ogier named Loial (Hammed Animashaun). Fan-favorite Loial is instantly likable, and the character has a lot of potential. Through Loial, Rand is soon reunited with Nynaeve. The reunion is satisfying and seeing the two bonding over Egwene (Madeleine Madden) is enjoyable. While not getting to see the rest of the group reunite in this episode is disappointing, it’s great to see at least some of the storylines begin to intertwine again.

Outside the city, Egwene and Perrin (Marcus Rutherford) arrive at Tar Valon with the group of travelers. Unfortunately, they run into the Children of the Light and their leader, Eamon (Abdul Salis). Eamon instantly recognizes the two, and Ila’s (Maria Doyle Kennedy) attempt to stand up to Eamon and block his path is a touching highlight. Unfortunately, Egwene and Perrin are soon captured despite their best efforts and are brought into Eamon’s camp.

Eamon was already terrible due to his previous killing of Aes Sedai, but his actions against Egwene and Perrin make him even more despicable. In an attempt to get Egwene to display her magic, Eamon cuts into Perrin’s back. The torture is painful to watch, but Egwene’s continued bravery in standing up to Eamon while being concerned for Perrin’s safety is empowering.

While Egwene eventually channels some magic to help them escape, it is Perrin that allows them to get out of the camp safely. Eamon’s torture of Perrin causes Perrin’s eyes to glow yellow and he breaks free of his restraints with Egwene’s help. Eamon is scared of Perrin and a pack of wolves begins to attack the camp, allowing Perrin and Egwene to escape. It seems that Perrin has some connection to the wolves, and such a development is intriguing. With everyone now in Tar Valon, hopefully, the reunion of the rest of the characters is worth the wait.

You can watch Farid’s reaction video of “Blood Calls Blood” below!

Author: Jessica Wolff

Jessica Wolff is a graduate of Drexel University with a BS in Film/Video. She has a passion for entertainment and representation in entertainment. She currently resides outside of Washington, DC.


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