Its hard to believe that we’re almost done with this season of Game of Thrones. The shorter season is great in terms of the pace of the show, but I’m sure I’ll be upset when the season is over in two weeks. I was expecting another battle scene at the end of this episode, but honestly I’m glad we didn’t get one. It’s good that we had an episode to breathe, and I cannot wait to see the action they give us with the money they saved from this episode. But this episode was no slouch, so lets dive right in. Full Spoilers below.
Jaime lives! I wasn’t exactly worried that he wouldn’t make it out, but it’s still great to see! Bronn is pissed because that Jaime went all suicide mode, and Jaime is all brooding and tired. Not a ton in the opening scene here, but if they had opened with anything else, it would have been a little too Walking Dead for me.
Elsewhere, Dany lines up all the troops from the Loot Train Battle from last episode. She says that if they bend the knee, they will live. If not, Dracarys. Most bend the knee, but Randall and Dickon hold out. Dany sets them aside, reasons with them for a bit, and then ultimately turns them to ash. What I thought was so powerful about his scene was Tyrion pleading with Dany for their lives. He was clearly pretty shook by his brother nearly dying, and it looks like they might be planting the seeds of him turning his back on Dany. And with the later scene with Varys, it this point is hammered home even further.
The Skies of Westeros
We see some ravens all hanging out in a tree, with eyes flashing white, the tell-tale signs of wargism. They take off, and we follow their journey past Eastwatch north of The Wall. This is where I have my obligatory gush over the shows cinematography, because oh my sweet good heavens, this shows cinematography. I won’t say it’s the most beautiful show on television, but dammit if it doesn’t come close. The sunset over the froze wasteland, I can’t even. Oh no! Its a massive horde of ice-zombies, and look its the Night King! He knowingly turns and looks at the flock of ravens, and Bran gets thrown out of Warg-mode. The connection between Bran and the Night King is a very interesting one that I’m sure will have major ramifications (See ya, The Wall), and I’m glad that they aren’t burring that thread. This scene was so cool. For all Bran’s talk of being the Three-Eyed-Raven, it’s cool to actually see him put that title to good use.
Dany and Drogon return to Dragonstone, and catch Jon in full brood mode. Drogon tries to intimidate Jon, but Jon is able to reach out and actually touch a dragon. This is huge for the series. Only Tarrgaryans have shown a connection with dragons before, and this fuels the fire of the “Jon will ride a dragon” theory. He and Dany have a conversation where he subtly insults her “children” and he says away from talking about that one time where he died.
And look who approached now, none other than Captain Friendzone! Jorah and Dany reunite in a really tender moment, right be before he realizes that she’s found yet another dude who is probably going to end up sleeping with the woman he loves. Sorry Captain Friendzone, maybe if you were a little younger, had slightly more hair, and drastically less flesh-eating-disease, you’d have a shot.
Later, they get Bran’s raven, saying that the icy-horde is closer than anyone could have imagined and Jon goes full King. He want’s to get the hell outta there and prepare to fight the real threat. Dany and some others bring up the political ramifications this may have, and after some deliberation, they come up with a plan of questionable smartness. They’re gonna capture a Wight, bring it to King’s Landing, and try to convince Cercei to have a cease fire to fight the impending doom. Game of Thrones is absolutely masterful at these little scenes of characters sitting arounds a table discussing whats next, and recently, the characters (and the tables) have only gotten better and better. JOn agree’s to form the search party, and Tyrion will try to set up the meeting by going to…
Jaime’s back! He goes to Cercei and tells her that, basically, theres no way out of this war on the winning side. She refuses to believe him, throwing in an element of “then let’s die fighting rather than on our knees.” He also confesses that Tyrion wasn’t responsible for Joeffrey’s death, rather, it was Olenna, the Queen of Throwin’ Shade. She initially doesn’t believe him, and then shifts to just being pissed that she didn’t get to drag the old woman naked through the streets. Cercei is crazy, even Jaime needs to be wary of her (more on that in a second).
In the super awesome Dragon skull room, Bronn drags Jaime down for a sparring session, one that he doesn’t quite understand the necessity of. But, plot twist! It’s that secret meeting Tyron talked about! Jaime is the only Lannister to ever really love Tyrion, and when he initially threatens his life, you can see how hurt Tyrion is. Shout out to Peter Dinklage, his performance in this scene was amazing. Tyrion explains why he had to kill their father, and explains the very real threat. Jaime agree’s to try and get Cercei onboard and he heads upstairs.
Jaime walks in and tells Cercei that he just finished meeting with Tyrion. Cercei gives him the single most intense death glare I’ve ever seen (more on that later). Jaime tells her that Tyrion didn’t kill their father, and man is that guy getting exonerated for a lot of stuff today! But Cercei has news of her own: She’s got Jaime’s bun in the oven! Nikolaj Coster-Waldau has always been good on this show, but the performance he gives when he finds out that not only is he going to be a father, but he actually gets to be that child’s father, I teared up watching him. Too bad there’s aboutsutley a zero percent chance that Cercei’s pregnant. That moment when Cercei went quiet? That was her realizing that she’s losing Jaime’s loyalty, so she needed to throw a Hail Mary to get him back. The last line of the scene is “Never betray me again,” after all.
Does Davos have a secret lady friend hiding out in Fleabottom? Go Davos! You deserve it! Wait… Why would this lady be working in a blacksmithing shop? Wait a minute, wasn’t there a character who was introduced in a blacksmithing shop way back in season one? Holy crap, there not actually brining back— Wait is this who I think it is? Show his face! Show me his damn face! Is it? HOLY SHIT ITS GENDRY!!! They brought him back! They actually brought him back!
That is my exact thought process while watching this scene. I really thought Gendry would just be some loose end that they never tied up, but show’s me to think so little of Weiss & Benioff. Not only is he back, but he’s spent the last few years becoming a badass. He been training, he’s not sure what for, but it’s paid off. It’s a nice little nod to his parentage that he prefers using a hammer, and they make a big deal about it. Another important fact: the blacksmith Gendry apprenticed under specialized in Valerian Steel, something that I’m sure Gendry picked up a thing or two about.
Side note: “I thought you’d still be rowing.” Was a delightful tip of the cap to fans, and I legitimately screamed when I heard it.
The Arch-Maesters are discussing the raven that Bran sent, and decide to write it off. They have good reason, these prophecies and magic are almost always wrong, but the viewers and Sam alike are pissed because we know this is the one time the crazy story turns out to be true. Sam gets pissed, steals a bunch of books, and leaves The Citadel with Gilly and Little Sam. Oh, and speaking of Gilly, she casually dropped the biggest reveal of the season. Rhaegar Targaryen, Jon’s father, annulled Elia Martel and married “someone else.” Why is this a big deal? Because it means that Jon Snow, the Bastard of Winterfell, isn’t actually a bastard. He was conceived in a marriage to Lyanna Stark, and is a highborn Targaryen. This also means that he has a better claim to the Iron Throne than Dany does. And Sam misses it because he’s pissed some Maester recorded how many shits he took. Sorry Gilly, you come in clutch and no one appreciates you, but I see you girl.
Sansa showed how great she was at being the Lady of Winterfell last episode, and she might be loving it a little too much. The Lords of the North come to her and tell her they would rather follow her than Jon. First of all, dick move Lords of the North, second of all, What the hell Sansa? Why aren’t you shutting them down. Arya comes in, see’s whats happening, and proceeds to follow her back to their late parents chambers. Arya calls her out in a stone cold manner, and Sansa sticks her head firmly in the sand (snow?). “You’ve always liked nice things, it makes you feel better than everybody else.” It as close to a verbal bitch slap as were going to get. I don’t think cutting everyone’s head off is the right answer, but Sansa sure didn’t have Jon’s back.
Arya is sure getting some screen time here, because now she’s following Littlefinger, who’s up to something. He sneaks around, in classic Littlefinger manner, obtains a scroll, and is aware that someone is watching him. He hides the scroll under his mattress like a kid with a stolen playboy, and Arya uses her super sleuth skills to sniff it out. If you’re wondering what the scroll is, its the one Sansa was forced to write Rob, asking him to come to King’s Landing and bend the knee to the true king. Arya sneaks out of the room, and we see Baelish lurking in the corner. Congratulations Arya, ya played ya self. This will likely drive the wedge deeper in Sansa and Arya’s relationship, and give Littlefinger the opportunity to swoop in with some on-brand manipulation.
Gendry, Tyrion, and Davos get back to Dragonstone, and Davos tells Gendry not to tell Jon his Father was Robert Baratheon. Gendry agree’s, and then immediately tells Jon his father is Rober Baratheon. They exchange some verbal spars, and an alliance between Stark and Baratheon is forged again. The get in the boat to head north, and Tyrion gives Ser Jorah a coin, basically signing his death warrant. See Jorah gives a heartfelt goodbye to Dany, and then get in a boat with the guy who is definitely going to end up boning her.
Jon and co. Arrive at Eastwatch, and We finally get a scene with everybody’s favorite wilding, Tormund. The hear about some other prisoners who also want to head beyond The Wall, and lo and behold, it’s the Brotherhood without Banners! They all explain why each of them hates the other one, but can eventually put aside their differences and band together to accomplish their mission. The gate opens, and Seal Team Snow marches into the blizzard. This was such an awesome moment for someone whose been following this series since the beginning. Seriously, in Seal Team Snow we have: A half-Stark, half-Targaryen King, The former hand of Stannis Baratheon, the bastard son of Robert Baratheon, the long term advisor of Daenerys Targaryen, a Red Priest, an immortal knight, and a former member of the Lannister’s King’s Guard. This is such a powerhouse group, full of characters we’ve been following for years and never dreamed would meet eachother It’s a bummer that a few of them will have to die.
Two episodes left. There are only two episodes left. I cannot wait to see what we get next, and I’m fairly certain there will be a battle with a certain horde of White Walkers. Also, anyone curious where Euron is at? He was promised to be the worst villain of the series, and I’m still waiting for him to break my heart.
Quote of the Episode: I couldn’t pick just one, so its another tie
“I haven’t given you permission to leave.”
“With respect, your Grace, but I don’t need your permission, I am a King.”
— Jon Snow playing hard-to-get like a damn champion
“Don’t mind me, just a man who lived to be a ripe old age.”
— Davos, explaining why he is the single greatest character this side of Lyanna Mormont