Coming off of last weekends episode, there was a lot to live up to. This episode delivered but in a more unique way.
Honestly, how can you follow-up after watching a giant dragon scorch the earth and melt faces off of its enemies? Well its kind of hard to really. Instead, Game of Thrones gave us a great show by bringing back old characters, teasing incredible new alliances, and dropping some major subtle hints that will surely pay off later!
WARNING: FULL SPOILERS AHEAD
This episode kicks things off by setting us at ease and letting us know that Jaime and Bronn are out of harms way. There might be some shit in their pants from their first dragon encounter, but they’re safe. It’s gratifying to see the bad guys you’ve been watching win season after season realize that they might actually lose this war. Drogon has such a presence on-screen that he demands every ounce of your attention. In a way, seeing the dragons in general get so much screen time is a pay off in itself, after episodes of only fleeting moments with them.
Speaking of Drogon, one of the biggest payoffs we finally get to see is Drogon recognizing Jon Snow. Not only that is the fact that Jon gets to pet him! Yes Dany realizes that this is a big deal, but I don’t think she realizes just how big. Going off of this is another moment later in the episode that was so subtly mentioned I don’t think most even picked up on it. Jon Snow could very well be a true blooded Targaryen! When we see Sam and Gilly conversing, we get to see Gilly exercising her reading abilities. It is here, while she’s dropping some knowledge on Sam that she mentions…
“Maynard says here that he issued an annulment for Prince Rhaegar and re-married him to someone else at the same time in a secret ceremony in Dorne.”
So what did this mean exactly? We know now that Jon is the bastard child of Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen. During the time when Rhaegar and Lyanna were bumping uglies, he was supposedly married to Elia Martell, you know, Prince Oberyn’s sister? With Gilly’s bombshell, this means that if Rhaegar infact got an annulment from Elia and immediately remarried Lyanna, Jon Snow is a true blooded Targaryen! Meaning Dany isn’t the sole bloodline left and not the only one with a very legitimate claim to the Iron Throne!!
Yea.. Let THAT sink in for a moment.
Aside from that, Cersei learns that Olena was in fact the one that poisoned Geoffrey and Tyrion had a meeting with Jaime about possibly getting an audience with Cersei. The catch is in order to get her to drop her grudge with the Mother of Dragons, he needs to convince her that the threat beyond the wall is very, VERY real (but more on that in a moment). We also see Arya sneak into Little Finger’s room and collect an extremely suspicious scroll. However, Littlefinger was watching her the whole time so obviously its something that she was meant to find. If I’m to look even further into it, it’s probably something that will drive a wedge between Arya and Sansa, thereby solidifying Littlefinger’s place by Sansa’s side.
Another huge payoff we got this episode was the return of our long-lost Gendry!! The dude got buff and now likes to play with giant hammers. Davos sought him out in King’s Landing and later introduced him to Jon Snow. We get treated to a cute bonding moment and the two agree that they will help one another and join together like their fathers did before them.
Gendry offers his help to Jon by agreeing to accompany him north of the wall. This brings us back to Tyrion’s means of convincing Cersei to drop this war against Dany and hopefully join the two in a temporary alliance against the White Walkers. In order for him to convince Cersei that White Walkers are very real, it is agreed that an actual White Walker is required to show her as proof. It is in this momentous time in the show that we see an Avengers type assembly of characters that was probably every Game of Thrones fan’s dream. Jon Snow, Gendry, Tormund Giantsbane, Jorah Mormont (yea he’s back), Beric Dondarrion, Thoros of Myr, Davos Seaworth and the Hound are all going north of the wall!!!
This group of Bros together is incredible; yet another payoff they delivered this episode. So much awesome all in one spot. Their sole mission? Find a White Walker and bring him past the Wall and south to King’s Landing. Doesn’t sound too bad. If the preview for next week is any indication, we’re about to see shit hit the fan and get some incredible actions scenes along with it!
Other honorable mentions include:
-the Tarlys being burned to a crisp because they refused to bend the knee, bye Dickon.
-Cersei threatening Jaime after meeting with Tyrion behind her back.
-Cersei being pregnant with another one of Jaime’s children
-Sam and Gilly leaving the Citadel
– and Jorah and Dany having a touching reunion/departure