Ok, we’re back for what will be a weekly fixture, my Game of Thrones review, analysis, speculation…
Interesting episode, I was hoping for more, but after such a big episode last week, it comes as no surprise that this one has a bit less content, or at less “wow” moments. I’m saying ‘less’ yes, I know what Stannis is saying from the other world, “fewer”, but what I meant is that “less/fewer” doesn’t mean none. And it’s obvious that after such a big mid-season episode, it slows down a little bit before the grand finale (I expect the last three episodes to be intensely crazy and crazily intense).
But this week we’re talking about Blood of my Blood, the rest will come when it comes.
We start with Beyond the Wall.
I gotta admit, I’m pretty proud of myself that I guessed that Benjen was going to be back and was going to be the one saving Bran and Meera. Now, it wasn’t very hard to guess, and it’s another thing that the show is good at. On the one hand, huge surprises, but on the other hands events that are easy to predict if one pays close attention to some details.
Of course, Benjen couldn’t have spent so many years alone beyond the Wall unscathed. He actually died and was sort of resurrected by the Children of the Forest. And he didn’t spend this whole time alone at all, he was with them and with the Three-Eyed Raven.
A lot of people are being resurrected this year, could we see more soon?… Of course I have someone in mind. Have you heard of the term “Clegane Bowl“? Also there is another character. But I’ve been spoiled by some inconsiderate book reader, I won’t do the same to you (remember, no book reference on these blog spots, nor in your comments). The thing is that in the book it happened a while ago, so I just assumed that it wouldn’t happen in the show at all, but maybe it will after all. But shhh for now.
Back to Benjen and Bran.
Benjen said something interesting. Bran is now the Three Eyed Raven. The “original” one said something similar just before dying. I’m still pondering the significance of that. Is he just his successor, or is it more than that?
It’s been now established that Bran’s visions are not just visions, but that he’s really there, at least in mind. So Bran could have been present at many events? This week we got a glimpse of the Mad King and of the events leading to his death. Will Bran have a role to play in those? The internet seems to think so.
Also, could he also literally be the old Three Eyed Raven teaching and leading his younger self?
We’re seeing a new place this week. Horn Hill (and we’re seeing the Reach for the first time too in the process). Sam’s return home went pretty much as expected. I actually kinda wondered why all of this took place on screen at all, until the end of those scenes. It took place so that Sam could steal his father’s sword made of Valyrian steel. Well, it’s not really stealing, if his father hadn’t been a dick, it would have been passed on to Sam anyway. And we all know why Sam took it. Because there are very few of those blades left, and they will be seriously needed against the White Walkers. Now, I doubt Sam can wield it. Well, there will be plenty of able fighters in the North who will be needing such a sword. Tormund? Dolorous Ed?
Yes, where are Sam and Gilly going now? I guess Sam is not going to Oldtown now. Probably back north, which will lead Gilly and him to the Riverlands, right?
Which brings us to the Twins!
I’m pretty happy to be back in such a dreadful place.
I love Ser Walder Frey, so despicable, but quite hilarious at the same time. I love how he simply despise everyone, allies and foes alike… even family… The ultimate grumpy grandpa.
What we learn there is that LittleFinger didn’t lie to Sansa (it’s important), the Blackfish has indeed retaken Riverrun.
What surprises me more is that the Riverlands are apparently going to be back to the front stage, I wasn’t expecting to see this region again on the show. Now, it’s true that there’s a lot of unfinished business in this region. Last week I mentioned the Brotherhood without Banners and look who’s mentioning them this week? Walder Frey. Seems like we’re going to see them again sooner than later too.
In Braavos, some very beautiful dialogues between Arya and that actress. Overall, I loved Arya’s reaction to the play, especially when she seemed to realize that she shares the same pain and anger that Cersei must be feeling. This is the moment when Arya decides to move on, I think. She doesn’t need revenge anymore, it’s been consuming her for too long and what for?
As a consequence, she doesn’t need to be a Faceless Woman anymore either. Will she return to Westeros? What will she try to do? Probably get reunited with Sansa or Jon (she doesn’t know they’re together at the moment). But before that, she’ll have to face the Faceless Men’s anger, or rather the Waif’s.
Actually, that’s an interesting thing we’ve got here. The Faceless Men and Women are supposed to have no feelings, no agenda, almost no free will. And yet, the Waif is full of (very negative) feelings towards Arya, and she really wants her dead for some mysterious reason.
Here is my take on it. It wasn’t only Arya who was being tested this whole time, but the Waif too. Her last test is to kill Arya. A test she will fail no matter what. If she manages to kill her she will have proven that she is not ready to be “no one”, and if she gets killed… Well, she’ll get killed…
How about Jaqen? What does he want? Well, I think that despite being no one, he does have a soft spot for Arya (after all he gave her a second chance, I assume not many apprentices get one), also if the Waif is doomed no matter what, what is the purpose of all that?
For some mysterious reason, I feel that Jaqen will let Arya go, and will let her go with the Waif’s face in her possession. Maybe Arya will have to do him a favor or something? We’ll see.
King’s Landing. I was expecting a bloodbath this week, but no, it got avoided by some sneaky sneaky sneakiness.
So, if I understood right, Margaery is pretending to have become “enlightened” by the faith to trick the High Sparrow into tricking Tommen to have the Crown and the Faith Militants join forces. This way, Margaery avoids humiliation, saves Loras, and deals a big blow to Cersei. If I remember correctly Margaery looked a big troubled when she saw Olenna arriving too. She loves her grandma and she has to lie to her at the moment, and of course she doesn’t like that.
Now, what is Margaery’s exit strategy from there? Because I don’t see one. She’s not in a dungeon cell anymore, but she’s still a prisoner of the High Sparrow in a sense.
The first collateral victim is Jaime. His failed attempt costs him his “job” in the King’s Guard, but that could be a blessing in disguise as he’s going to be far from King’s Landing, a place that will be dangerous very soon.
He is sent to Riverrun too. Oh and who else is going there? Right, Brienne and Podrick.
Great reunion in perspective… Except that they will be on opposite sides there. I don’t think they will fight though. Actually I have the feeling that Jaime will join the “good guys” one way or another.
Question? Now that he’s not a King’s Guard anymore, does it mean that he has become the head of the Lannisters, and the new lord of Casterly Rock? Not sure.
And finally in the Dothraki Sea, Daenerys rides her dragon (who has become huge) and is ready to attack Westeros… Well, she’ll need ships first. Will she ever make it to Westeros? I thought that was going to happen a season and half ago.
The line from Daario about the fact that she’s a conqueror makes me wonder. What did he mean? Yes, she should conquer all of Westeros, but also she won’t be very good at ruling the realm after conquering… Well, I’m sure Varys and Tyrion would love to be back in King’s Landing and do some ruling there instead of in Meereen.
Update: OK, I was a bit sleepy when I wrote the end of that post, and I didn’t really know what to make of Daenerys’ scene. I’ve found a fascinating analysis on Reddit today. It revolves around Drogon. He had been harder and harder to deal with as he grew older, and one thing that confused me when he saved Daenerys at the Fighting Pits was why he would fly her to the Dothraki, then just abandon her there. Well, what if Drogon was testing Daenerys. We all complain that her plot is a bit slow and there is little to no evolution at times, and Drogon was getting frustrated with that as well. So, he let the Dothraki take Daenerys to remind her who she is, or who she is supposed to be. Had she failed to take control of the khalasars, Drogon would probably have never returned. But she succeeded, she regained her purpose. That is not sitting on a high chair in some faraway city, it is leading armies to death and glory. She passed the test. Drogon returned. She’s now worthy to ride him again. Not only ride him, but he will now listen to her, just like when he lands next to the Dothraki, gently and without burning or eating a single one. Now I hope that Daenerys’ group will leave Meereen before the end of the season (I never really understood why they settled there in the first place).
Ok, that’s all for today.
I’m sure I’ve forgotten a few things.
Next week preview seems to indicate we’ll really going to get lots of Riverlands, and also Davos speaking the voice of reason.