This second episode held some surprising moments. Tyrion shows is strategic prowess, Danny gets a lesson from the eldest Tyrell, Jon Snow travels South, Sam makes a friend, Cersei gets a new toy, and Euron pulls off a win.
WARNING: FULL SPOILERS AHEAD!
The second episode of this season further establishes whats on the horizon, while also treating us to some major action at the end. Euron pulls off the first win in this encroaching war and we’re shown what his bloodlust and fleet can really do. Also, his ship is pretty badass. With Yara, Ellaria, and the last standing Sand Snake now taken prisoner, it falls on Theon to make the next move. Sadly, we see him regress and flee with his tail between his legs while his mad uncle takes Yara and company hostage. While its unknown what her fate is, I think its pretty safe to assume she’s still alive for the time being. Lets face it, she is too big of a character to not kill on-screen.
While the action was fun, the whole naval battle involved characters we could really care less about. Yea Euron is probably the next Ramsay or Joffrey, and Yara is a badass lesbian pirate, but aside from that it was just a cool scene to watch, there wasn’t really any particular person you were rooting for. While some of the fan theories were interesting to speculate about what Euron’s “gift” to Cersei would be, it turns out his gift is just delivering her enemies on a silver platter. Sorry crazed fans, but sometimes the answer is more obvious than we want to believe. Not to say there won’t be any surprises before he delivers his gift, but its safe to assume now that it will be in the form of Cersei’s Dornish enemies.
In other news, Hot Pie returns once again!! Turns out Arya didn’t even know her last remaining family had reunited in Winterfell? But now she does, so while we are led to believe she is now heading north and putting her assassination plans on hold, that isn’t actually confirmed yet. It was nice seeing the two reunite for a hot minute though, and showed us that Arya still has a heart after all. We were also treated to another old character, Arya’s Direwolf, Nymeria!
All grown up with a pack of her own, she surrounds Arya and unfortunately turns her down. This sadly confirms Arya isn’t the person she used to be and neither is Nymeria. “That’s not you..” she says as she watches Nymeria trot away with her pack. This small scene could possibly have huge consequences. It’s in this moment Arya either decides to continue her journey north or that she is in fact someone she no longer recognizes, and in turn, someone her own family may not recognize. Meaning we don’t actually know which path she will take right now, but regardless it was a moving scene.
The majority of “Stormborn” was strategic set up and Dany planning how she will go about conquering her homeland. It’s very clear that if she wanted to, she could sweep across Westeros like a plague, burning everything in her path. She could, but she won’t. None of this is speculation, it’s what she admits. She doesn’t want to be a “Queen of Ashes” because then she’s no better than her brother and mad king father. She continues to show us that she wants to be a Queen for the common people. The raven she sends to Jon Snow, shows that she means to make allies, as long as they are willing to “bend the knee”.
This leads directly into Jon Snow’s predicament. His one and only mission is stopping this army of White Walkers he’s gone on about. What kills the living dead? Dragon glass. Where is there a mountain of it? Dragon Stone. While he was mainly advised not to, its killing two birds with one stone. He can travel south and hear out Dany, while also trying to get his precious Dragon glass which he can then form into weapons for the impending war.
We once again see Sansa try to be the voice of reason here. While she is this bridge of knowledge for Jon, it is yet to be determined whether she will gravitate towards a lighter side, or travel down the dark path Littlefinger intends to send her down. Littlefinger will be the deciding factor in this internal struggle for Sansa without a doubt.
Now that we are coming into the final moments of this series, it’s incredibly satisfying to see some of these set pieces we’ve been sitting on for years finally pay off. Things like Tyrion’s relationship with Jon, Varys’ original backstory and plan to back Dany’s brother, Sam meeting Jorah and bonding with him over their mutual friend/parent and former leader of the Night’s Watch. These moments are wonderful to finally see on-screen and made the episode wonderfully satisfying.
Lastly, we get to see Qyburn’s solution to Cersei’s dragon problem… A giant crossbow. Hopefully this obvious weapon won’t be the downfall of any dragons, but that is yet to be seen. Seeing her plea to the lords that would hear her out was annoying, and yet satisfying, because while they indeed may help her out, it was nothing more than an elegant begging for help moment. One that Cersei I’m sure loathed doing.
Overall, Game of Thrones delivered yet another great episode leaving us wanting more. This next episode will finally give us the meeting of two super powers we’ve been rooting for since the show premiere, Jon Snow and (his aunt) Daenerys Targaryn! Personally, I’m also curious to see if the flaying Sam gave Jorah did in fact prevent the stoneskin from progressing!