...AND MY HAMMER, MOTHERF***ERS.
THAT, my Beloved Throners, is how you make a reappearance four seasons after we last saw you. Quit your job no questions asked, kill two guys with your mighty f***ing warhammer, ignore Davos’s advice to play it cool and just f**ing bro up with Jon Snow.
Welcome back, Gendry. I don’t even mind that you had your shirt on.
Davos’ recruitment of the last Baratheon bastard turned out to be everything I ever wanted. To misquote Homer Simpson, I’m a white woman, aged 18 to 49, and (finally) everyone listens to me: Jon and Gendry, together at last!
And not just Jon and Gendry either… but Ser Jorah! No sooner back at Dragonstone than off with Jon and Gendry to meet up with Tormund Giantsbane and the Brotherhood Without Banners to create THE MAGNIFICENT F***ING SEVEN IN FURS.
I am honestly so turned on right now I can’t even think straight.
If there’s one thing sexier than a wild-man-goes-yonder adventure, it’s seven wild men bonding over freezing temperatures, a desire for prophetic fulfilment and fighting wight supremacists.
Someone else who’s having quite the bromance is Darth Cersei, who is now UP THE DUFF thanks to her twin. Yes, Jaime may have sunk in that lake, but not before his swimmers hit their target. SPLOOSH.
Why in Westeros does Cersei think pumping out another little Simba for his own inbred Lion King crowning moment is a good idea? Incestuous breeding DOES NOT WORK OUT WELL FOR YOU PEOPLE.
Hey Sam Tarly, do you want to SHUT THE FUDGE UP and start LISTENING TO YOUR GIRLFRIEND for once? You completely missed that golden ticket of a Targaryen truth bomb she laid out for you because you were too busy feeling like you weren’t the toughest Oompa-Loompa in the Chocolate Factory.
You know what happens to “great men”? They get torched, like your little brother. Yes, vale, vale, to Dickon, a hunky young man on the cusp of great heroism and ab-worship. Oh Dickon, cut down in your prime. I guess you’ve been Lorena Bobbitted. Or technically John Bobbitted. I can’t remember, I was very young at the time and my father giggled too much whenever that news story popped up.
With that vague early 90s reference, let’s put on our Girlfriend-style flower hats, watch a Yahoo Serious film (not the good one), laugh at Paul Keating’s parliamentary insults and get cracking on another installment of Raven On, the only Game of Thrones recap series that loves being flogged with a warm lettuce.
Season 7, Episode 5: “Eastwatch” OR “You’re Fired”
Davos’ pro-active recruitment style wasn’t the only management technique on display this episode. The whole hour was like getting stuck in the reference section at Dymock’s with somebody who’s just been on professional development course. After extensive research into this field (ie, I googled “management techniques” because not all heroes wear capes) I can attest to a number of different styles in play.
You’ll have to bear with me of course, because I did an arts degree, not some high-falutin’ business course, so my definitions might not be 100% correct. In my own life, I can’t even manage four foster kittens. One of them refuses to actually poop in the litter tray. Right outside the tray, sure, but not in it. It’s prompted a unique management style I call “eccentric screaming”.
So I often I wish I could be a little bit more like Daenarys Targaryen, who commands her pets easily, and has a “directive” style of management. That’s a nice way of saying “dictatorial”, except I wouldn’t say that because I am not jumping on the “Dany is an unshakeable bully” bandwagon just yet.
But Tyrion, as we know, wields his art of kompromat in deliberate brushstrokes. He’s visibly unsettled by the battlefield of ashes, and attempts to make some sort of amends by trying to convince Daenarys not to burn Randyll and Dickon Tarly alive simply for being faithful to Cersei Lannister. You know, the one they switched their allegiance to after breaking faith with Olenna Tyrell.
But like a rejected Bachelor contestant signing up to be the next Bachelorette, Dany is determined to get as many men as possible on bended knee.
“Join or die,” she offers, in her best Benjamin Franklin impersonation.
“Nuh-uh,” says the elder Tarly. He cites the fact that Cersei was born in Westeros as a chief reason for staying loyal to her. He clearly doesn’t remember Dany was born on Dragonstone, which is an island of Westeros, and she never renounced her citizenship. She is totally eligible to run for parliament and/or Queen.
In a last ditch effort to stay the execution, Tyrion suggests Dany send Tarly Senior to the Night’s Watch, where his military expertise would be invaluable.
It’s at that moment that you remember Randyll Tarly was the asshole who banished his eldest son Samwell to Castle Black because he was too fat and too sensitive to be a “good” heir of Horn Hill. He is not a nice person. So yeah, maybe I don’t mind him being punished.
Randyll wants none of it anyway, given that Dany isn’t his queen. Dany respects his code of honour, and enforces her own, which is a lot more burn-y than Randyll’s.
She doesn’t even relent when Tarly’s son tries to show her his big Dickon and challenges her to burn him too. “No probs,” she replies.
Tyrion grows ever more angsty with this excessive force, but it’s no use. Dany’s near-whispered “Dracarys”, is not as showy as Donald Trump’s “You’re fired!” but the effect is far more literal. Drogon incinerates the Tarly pair, like so many Bond villains with lasers.
Ironically, the conflagration pours cold water on any other notions of honour in the remaining Lannister soldiers. Like Boyz II Men, they’re down on bended knee. They’ll never walk again, oooh.
Later, Tyrion and Varys ponder their mutual concerns about Dany’s lineage and how best to manage her temperament. She’s not her father, totally not, absolutely not, final, full stop, never again, cross my heart and hope to be spanked until my bottom goes purple. But she perhaps needs guidance towards a more “affiliative” management style, creating harmony between queen and subjects, remembering to put people first, and deadly-conquest-by-any-means-necessary second.
The moment inspires some self-reflection about the evil that can flourish when good men - or even morally ambiguous men - do nothing. Varys escaped the Mad King’s wrath by catching traitors for him to kill. He didn’t pull the trigger. He was just following orders. How then can they assuage their consciences and steer Dany away from that point of no return?
It’s telling that this scene is the first in a while that we’ve seen Tyrion have a drink. Just to take the edge off.
Meanwhile, by warging into a murder of crows soaring above and beyond The Wall, Bran is having what you might call a “blue sky” brainstorming session, except Winter is Here so it’s more of a “bleak sky” session.
In a beautiful piece of visual effects magic, you feel almost at one with the birds, cruising at high altitude on cold northern winds. Then they crest a hill and OH FLIPPING HECK THAT’S A LOT OF ZOMBIES.
It only takes a moment for the Night’s King to glance up at them, and they scatter, squawking madly all the while and breaking Bran’s wifi connection.
“Ravens,” he tells his Maester, “We’re going to need to send ravens”. I hope they’ve got big scrolls for lots of writing because given Bran’s tone, HE’S GOING TO NEED A BIGGER QUOTE.
Jon Snow’s been busy digging dragonglass out of the Dragonstone reserves, which I would have thought warranted a slow-motion shirtless shovelling montage, but apparently my Beloved is too busy hanging around windswept cliff tops which I guess is an OK substitute.
That’s where Jon is when Dany flies back in on her chartered dragon, with Drogon landing right in front of him. He takes off his glove (GASP, I’ll take Jon Snow taking off anything) and has a proper How To Train Your Dragon poster moment with the big lizard.
Dany looks upon this with some interest. Nobody has ever touched her dragon before, not even Maario, and he touched everything else. But she doesn’t seem overly concerned and the whole "Could Jon have the Blood of the Dragon?" question never comes up. Instead Dany brags about how beautiful her kids are (yes, parents, all your children are the most beautiful YAWN) and how sometimes you have to show your strength to help people, using the not-quite-the-same example of how Jon defeated Roose Bolton.
There’s an interesting moment when Dany presses Jon further about that whole “knife to the heart” comment Davos made, but the tension is left hanging because they’re interrupted by the return of Ser Jorah, cured of greyscale (now full colour) and ready to kill for his Khaleesi.
Dany is genuinely moved by his reappearance, and their interactions are one of the highlights of this episode. Ser Jorah no doubt still adores the young queen, but seems happy to simply accept her friendship and trust, which she is thrilled to bestow. Jon eyes Jorah off with some trepidation - after all, he’s carrying what should be Jorah’s family sword and there’s obviously a story there. But soon he has bigger fish to fry.
For the scroll that Varys and Tyrion had not-so-secretly intercepted was from Winterfell, which revealed Jon had not one but THREE siblings now waiting for him back home.
At a conference meeting in the Dragonstone boardroom, Jon tells Dany she can bloody well get stuffed if she thinks he’s just going to sit around looking pretty for her (exactly, my love, you only look pretty for me).
He needs to get back home and prepare for an epic battle, and presses Dany once again to join him. She’s still in Operation Defeat Cersei mode, so it’s a no from her until that happens.
But then, despite his last plan going about as well as Napoleon’s circa 1815, Tyrion has got another idea.
What if they could PROVE to Cersei that the whole “We’re about to be consumed by an all-powerful army of the dead” wasn’t just a fantasy? What if they captured a wight supremacist and brought them face to undead face with the Lannister Queen? Would she finally accept they had bigly problems and maybe do something about this alt-threat?
No, of course she won’t, but I guess they don’t know that and they’re holding on to any shaft of hope they can get.
Jorah gallantly volunteers to go beyond the Wall and catch one, and Jon states the Free Folk will help him lead the raiding party. Davos bridles at the idea of the King in the North putting himself in harm’s way, but Jon insists only he has the zombie tracker know-how to bring down a wight.
“I didn’t give you permission to leave,” Dany says, with a catch in her throat.
“Stuff youse all,” he replies. No, of course he doesn’t. Instead he gives a rousing, beautiful speech about how he had come to Dragonstone and trusted a stranger, and now implored Dany to do the same. GOD HE IS SO SERIOUS AND BROODY AND CONSUMED WITH MORAL RESPONSIBILITY. My heart can’t take much more of it.
Tyrion declares that as only Cersei listens to Jaime, he has to try to meet with his brother, which means sneaking in to King’s Landing, which means it’s the Onion Knight’s time to shine!
Davos successfully sails Tyrion in a little boat to a cove near the capital, but warns the Hand of the Queen he can be of no use should there be any trouble.
In the capital, Jaime has the horrible task of informing his sister-lover-queen of their army’s annihilation at the hands of the Dothraki and breath of the dragon.
Still covered in the ashy remainders of his fellow soldiers, Jaime knows their chances of beating Dany’s forces, even with hired mercenaries, is slim. Cersei points out he killed Dany’s father and she sits on his throne, so the chances of a successful peace deal are even slimmer.
Jaime also comes clean about the truth behind Joffrey’s murder - that it was Olenna, not their brother, what done him in. Cersei doesn’t want to believe it, but when Jaime points out how much easier Tommen would be to control, she knows he is right.
She wishes she'd been more forceful about making Olenna's death painful, but Jaime reminds her that their whole house is gone, so no use fantasising about what might have been.
Later, Bronn convinces Jaime he has to undergo more sword training with his non-golden hand. They march deep into the dungeons, Jaime bitching the whole way. But it turns out it’s all a set-up so Tyrion can speak to his brother. AWWWW, bless. Despite turning his back on the Lannisters, Bronn doesn’t see his former road trip buddy as an enemy. Also Tyrion probably paid him to do it.
Jaime is of course angry at his little brother, having previously threatened to cut the half-man, well, in half. Tyrion himself gets rightly righteous when Jaime brings up the whole “you killed our Dad” thing. Tywin was going to have Tyrion executed even though he knew he was innocent of Joffrey’s murder, just because he hated his dwarf son. Both brothers really do have grievances, but right now Tyrion has an message from the Dragon Queen, and it seems the Lannister brothers can still negotiate when it counts.
After his meeting, Jaime returns to Cersei, who seems remarkably upbeat about the revelation her sworn enemy/sibling was in town.
She is, as expected, dismissive of the idea that White Walkers and grumpkins and snarks (oh my!) are marching south with the ferocity of one of my foster kittens devouring a liver treat. But ever the pragmatic completely self-absorbed narcissistic cow, she spies an opportunity.
Sucking up to Daenarys at this point might lure her into a false sense of security, which could play into Cersei’s hands in the future. And besides, Cersei has another consideration - HER UNBORN CHILD.
Do you know, it’s a sign of how infrequently I read women’s magazines that I did not even consider the option of Cersei getting knocked up. Surely if I had read the Westerosi Women’s Weekly, there would have been some article quoting sources or insiders or pals about a tell-tale baby bump.
But of course it was a possibility - she is older but not menopausal, for crying out loud. And she and Jaime have been reunited enough to do the (particularly) nasty on many occasions.
As she embraces a proud (although gods know why) Jaime, Cersei then slips into the managerial guise of Lumbergh from Office Space, with a wine goblet instead of a coffee cup.
“Yeah, I’m going to need you to go ahead and not betray me again. Did you get my memo? If you could just not betray me again, that’d be great.”
It’s lucky Cersei had this change of heart about consorting with Tyrion before stationing a phalanx of goldcloaks on the stairs to Davos’ special cove.
As it was, just two guards turned up to quiz Davos on why he was there. And when they became a problem, they were swiftly dispatched by GENDRY AND HIS AMAZING TECHNICOLOUR WARHAMMER.
Ah, yes, Gendry. When Davos said “I’ve got business in Fleabottom” I shrieked and almost bit my lip. Oh look, it’s the Street of Steel. Oh look, it’s a smithy. Oh look, it’s carefully position shots of newly forged swords being pounded into shape. Oh look, it’s a very shapely back.
OH YES YES YES IT’S GENDRY!
He’s been hiding in plain sight, not rowing (great gag though, Davos). When Seaworth furrows his brow and starts asking if he’s ready to take on a bigger challenge, to place himself in grave danger, to face almost certain death… Gendry interrupts with a simple YEP RIGHT LET’S GO.
It turns out the Baratheon bastard has been biding his time making swords for Lannisters, all the while waiting for his destiny to arrive. He’s right to go straightaway, and he’s bringing his HUGE F***OFF WARHAMMER with him, which is extra special because THAT’S WHAT HIS DADDY FOUGHT WITH. I actually wept tears of joy and horniness.
I'll be your nail, baby.
The scene in which Davos cleverly and cunningly pays off the Gold Cloaks, then offers them fermented crab viagra and shooshes them off to a brothel was a hilarious comic vignette, due in part no doubt to the presence of comedian Kevin Eldon.
We’d seen Gendry’s hammer and thought “Surely those two HAVE to be dead”. But it was only when Tyrion, the dwarf who looms a bit too large, arrived on the scene, did Gendry have to literally swing into action. I may have laughed heartily at that final exchange between Davos and Tyrion: “This is Gendry.” “He’ll do.”
Up in Winterfell, Sansa is attempting what I believe is called “participative” style management, where you “encourage employee input into decision-making”. This is what’s happening as Lord Glover and Lord Royce yap yap yap at Sansa about Jon staying at Winterfell and not taking off on some risky venture north of the Wall.
Arya, who’s been watching her sister play Lady of Winterfell, is much more of a “pacesetting” manager, the kind of boss who’s happy to perform tasks personally and expects workers to follow her example. In this instance, Arya thinks Sansa should have defended Jon more as King, and the feelings of valuable allies be damned.
Sansa encourages Arya to speak her mind, but it’s not a nice declaration: Arya implies Sansa wants Jon’s job, and is just humouring the northern lords so if something happens to Jon, they will back her in. “How can you say such a thing?” Sansa asks. “Because you’re thinking it now,” replies Arya.
At this point I would just like to say to the Stark sisters what my mother would tell me when I fought with my brother and declared him THE MOST HORRIBLEST PERSON EVER.
“Now, come on, you’re each other’s best friend. You love each other really. Stop all this nonsense, or I’ll get the wooden spoon.” She never hit us with the wooden spoon, you understand, she’d just hit the walls as she marched up the corridor, and it was so funny we’d all forget we’d been fighting and just laugh.
My brother doesn’t watch Game of Thrones, so he’s unlikely to read this. But we now get together once a week and he trains me how to box, so maybe there’s a way for Arya and Sansa to get along after all. And if they don’t stop this nonsense, I’ll get the wooden spoon.
Of course Baelish only has one management style and that’s ME ME ME ME ME. Ugh, he’s so skeezy. Luckily Arya is onto him, stalking him like the shadow she is, watching him receive information from a young woman, and converse with Lords Glover and Royce.
She then spies him receiving a scroll from the new Winterfell Maester, who confirms it as “the only copy” in the castle. Baelish thanks him on behalf of Sansa (SCOWL) and briefly enters his room to hide it. Arya, ever resourceful, picks his lock and goes searching for the parchment. She finds it, eventually, hidden in a hole in his mattress, and I don’t even want to think about how many holes Littlefinger has in his mattress and for what reason.
I took a screenshot of the scroll, and it appears to be the one Sansa sent Robb after Baelish betrayed Ned, and Sansa fell under Cersei’s control. There was a mention of Ned Stark attempting to overthrow Joffrey, and a call for Robb to pledge allegiance to the evil boy-king.
Having possession of this scroll is useful to Baelish because it would help keep secret the fact that he was directly responsible for Ned Stark’s capture and death. Robb knew straight away the scroll contained “Cersei’s words”, but will Arya? Will she work out Baelish’s betrayal, or will she take it as evidence Sansa is not to be trusted?
One thing’s for sure - Baelish is onto her. That doesn’t scare me too much, because Arya has skills and Catspaw and Littlefinger has over-confidence and a soft gullet. But I do worry somewhat about him using the fact that Arya is onto him against her with Sansa. And the only way I know how to deal with that is IN PARODY SONG.
(With apologies to R.B. Greaves)
Last week she got home
Reunited with her clan
There was the sister she thought she knew
Playing host to a skeezy man
She kept her cool, she ain’t no fool
She stalked him ‘round all Winterfell
Broke into his hotel room
She’s not the type to yell
So take a letter, Arya
Might get you into strife
But if Baelish tries something
I hope you stab with your knife
She’s been many things but most of all
A good adversary to jerks
And it’s times like this I wish she’d just
Give Baelish the f***ing works
Was she wrong to track him
See the dirt he’s trying to get
Hopefully we’ll get to see
Not just Lannisters pay their debts
So take a letter, Arya
Don’t think it’s Sansa’s fault
That girl’s been through the wringer
Those wounds don’t need salt
Because a girl was No One
It’s hard to understand
Why she’d want to hold back from
Stabbing that creepy man
I want to tell you truthfully
And this will sound quite blunt
He may have a little finger
But he’s simply a massive c***
So take a letter, Arya
But watch out for your back
‘Cause Baelish saw you sneak in
He’s gonna want to attack
Oh take a letter, Arya
A conclusion you can draw
If Baelish gives you trouble
Don’t forget your Catspaw
In Old Town, the Maesters have formed a collaborative sub-committee on how to deal with Bran’s news that Westeros is about to get an ice-cap in its ass. There are more old white guys in robes than at a Klan rally. We may as well dub them the Freemaesters. I bet they have a secret handshake and know who Jack the Ripper was, you just wait and see.
Sam realises they’re talking about Bran and begs the Freemaesters to take his message seriously. Sam’s seen the army of the dead, he knows it’s for realsies. He says given their esteemed role in the workings of Westeros, the Freemaesters should tell everybody to get ready to send their armies north to defend the realm, and to spend every moment finding a permanent cure for the White Walkers in the Citadel’s substantial database.
But Maester Jim Broadbent thinks it could also be a trick played by Daenarys to create a distraction and allow an easier invasion. Another one dismisses it all as “magic birds talking to cripples”. When Sam leaves, we discover all the Freemaesters know Sam’s brother and father just got barbequed, but Maester JB just doesn’t have the heart to tell him. BOO PISH YOU STUPID OLD MEN.
Later that evening, Gilly reads interesting bits of trivia about the Citadel and some of its maesters while Sam continues to study. The Citadel has 15 782 steps, apparently, and one of the maesters used to record his bowel movements. Also, this one particular maester performed - what’s it called - an “annulment” on some chap named Prince Rhaegar and married him to another woman at the same time----
“SHUT UP GILLY I’M HAVING FEELINGS AND I DON’T CARE ABOUT YOUR THOUGHTFUL AND INTELLIGENT AND PROBABLY VERY USEFUL FACTOIDS” blasts Sam, in a rare moment of un-Samliness.
Fed up with recording the adventures of greater men and yearning to be something more, Sam raids the Citadel for as many dusty scrolls and ominous tomes as he can, then loads his family into a wagon and takes off for gods know where.
Sam’s gonna realise pretty soon that one way he could be a great man is to recognise the great woman working right beside him. I’m fairly certainly any lady reading who’s experienced male co-workers ignoring or dismiss your ideas would have been urging Gilly to clock Sam in the face.
Back at Dragonstone, Ser Davos tries to introduce Gendry to Jon as “Clovis, A Simple Blacksmith” but is undone when Gendry forges right ahead with “Hey I’m Robert Baratheon’s bastard, and our Dads were friends, so let’s be friends and go fight some zombies.”
It was a gorgeous encounter, particularly when Jon said Gendry was leaner than King Robert, and Gendry replied that Jon was shorter than Ned. Jon looked stunned before cracking his BEAUTIFUL WRY SMILE that once he realises I exist, will surely reserve only for me.
Dany comes to say goodbye, and her embrace of Jorah is so touching. Mostly because they are touching, which is obviously something they couldn’t do back when he had that infectious disease. Jon tells her if he doesn’t make it back, at least she won’t have to deal with the King in the North, and she replies that she’s grown used to him NAWWWWWWW. I loved the sentiment but also they’re related and I’m still working out how I feel about the JDBP (Jon/Dany Boning Potential).
A mere paddle later, and we see Jon’s crew pulling up at Eastwatch, a part of the Wall we’ve never seen before. It’s run down, and heavily exposed to the elements. It’s possibly the most unappealing place we’ve seen in the show, and remember, we also saw Baelish’s bedroom this episode. Shudder.
It’s only been two episodes since we last saw Tormund Giantsbane, but by crikey I’ve missed his bushy red beard and literal nature. “I’m staying behind, I’m a liability,” says Davos, to which Tormund replies “Yes. You are.” Tormund for Earth President.
After accepting Jon’s need to go north of the Wall with minimum questioning, he makes the startling revelation that they’re not the only ones seeking to punish themselves in the glacial conditions. The Brotherhood Without Banners got caught trying to sneak in, and Tormund’s been holding them in the castle cells, without even any booze, much to Thoros’ dismay.
It was such a strange reunion, the odd surroundings belying so many faces familiar to each other. Jon recognised the Hound, Jorah recognised Thoros, and Tormund realised Jorah was the son of the Mormont who’d hunted Free Folk down. Beric attempted a fine speech about the mission the Lord of Light had placed on them, but Gendry warned about trusting the people who had sold him to Melisandre to be sexed upon then murdered.
Eventually it was Jon who declared their past differences held no sway anymore. By reminding everyone that they’re all on the same side against the White Walkers, Jon Snow proved himself a “coaching” style of manager, the sort of person who develops the individual strengths of his employees as a way to improve their performance.
I just want to add, Jon, my Beloved, that I am happy to report you every day for gruelling physical training and an invigorating groin rub. Honestly, you can Arsene my Wenger any day.
And then, it was time for the boys to SUIT UP and become the North’s answer to THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN. Play the song, people! There were no horses, to be sure, but the furry snowsuits were animal enough for this Mother of Kittens. MEEEEE-OW.
Yay! Best Moments
The whole final sequence at Eastwatch, with Tormund interrogating Jon as to why he wants to go North, which queen he intends to convince (“The one with dragons, or the one who f***s her brother?), telling Davos he’s a liability and why they didn’t bring “the big woman” along (NAWWWWWWWW), was pure gold.
There was also a charming moment between Tyrion and Jorah, where a coin was exchanged for luck. It was another reminder of how many of these characters have popped in and out of each other's lives over the years - and a hope they will again.
Zing! Best Lines
Tyrion: Who’s that for?
Varys: Jon Snow.
Tyrion: Did you read it?
Varys: It’s a sealed scroll for the King in the North.
Tyrion: (after a long pause) What’s it say?
Varys: Nothing good.
And of course, Davos to Gendry in the forge - “I thought you’d still be rowing”. Honestly, the only way they can outdo that gold medal fan service is MAKE JON SNOW BE SHIRTLESS A LOT MORE.
Cersei’s preggers by her brother. For the fourth time. And she’s not even planning to hide the fact that Jaime is the father. Grossssssssss.
Bronn saving Jaime from the lake in that very first scene simply because “until I get paid, only I’m allowed to kill you” was CLASSIC Bronn. I thought for certain Jaime was going to end up as Dany’s prisoner after the loot train battle, but I’m glad Bronn was there as a hired buddy. I loved every moment he was onscreen, including his deceiving Jaime into meeting with Tyrion under the guise of training in the dungeons. So you can imagine why Cersei’s throwaway line “I’m going to punish him” because he set up that meeting makes me VERY NERVOUS.
After last week’s epic loot train battle, it was amazing to have this almost-recovery episode as a palate cleanser. Not that it was boring by any means - House Tarly literally went up in smoke, Cersei got a bun in the oven, Gendry got hammered, and people were criss-crossing Westeros all over the place.
The final assembly of the Eastwatch Avengers was spine-tinglingly glorious, and sets up the mighty snow battle hinted at in the pre-season trailers. Given the pace at which the show is now running, it seems fitting that this will take place next episode. Will they bring back a wight as proof for Cersei? Will Cersei play her trump card now, her pregnancy? As much as Dany hates Cersei, I cannot see her wanting to murder a pregnant woman, given her own experiences and desire to help women over the years.
Will Sam and Gilly be safe, wherever they go, and will Sam actually listen to Gilly? And what of that nugget of information, which seems to prove that not only was Jon the son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark, but that they were married? Dany may have grown used to Jon, but will she be as friendly if she finds out he’s a direct rival? And does this place him right back in the centre of thinking as to "Who is Azor Ahai?" - the ultimate song of ice and fire?
Thank you for bearing with me through another exceptionally lengthy recap, beloved Kittens. A special head scratch to my precious Patreon subscribers, including Fiona B, Dylan C, Sean JW, Anne R and Jim K. You are sexier than Gendry in a sweaty forge. Let us now turn our attention to discussing and dissecting in minute detail!