Previously on Game of Thrones, ‘The Dance of Dragons’
Stannis – Near Winterfell
Looks like burning his daughter alive worked out for Stannis. The snow has melted and his path to Winterfell is clear. What could possibly go wrong? Oh, half his men left in the middle of the night and took all the horses? Well. Probably weren’t needed anyway. Stannis has the Lord of Light on his side. What’s that? Selyse killed herself? War isn’t for everyone. To Winterfell! Uh, Melisandre just bounced with the one horse we had left?
Okay. To Winterfell! I guess.
Stannis walks to war with the most unenthusiastic soldiers in the history of battles. You know one of them had to be thinking, “I can’t believe Arthur didn’t tell me they was going last night.”
Inside Winterfell, as Ramsay’s men prepare, Sansa uses the tool she swiped to let herself out of her room. Carrying a candle in her hand instead of putting it in a fucking pocket or something, she heads for the broken tower.
Outside of Winterfell, Brienne is staring at the tower window like she’s willing the candle to light with her mind. Pod runs up to announce Stannis’ arrival. With revenge on her mind – and not the fucking mission she’s been preparing for since episode fucking 5 – she takes off to find Stannis… just as Sansa lights the candle.
As Stannis gives orders for his men to set for a siege, the Bolton army rides up. Apparently, they got shit to do and want to get this over with. Stannis knows he’s lost, but he’s Stannis so he doesn’t run. He pulls his sword and walks to meet the incoming attackers. Sansa watches this from the tower like, “I can’t catch a fucking break.”
After the fighting has stopped, Stannis hobbles through the woods, dead bodies all around. Two of Bolton’s men approach and Stannis kills them easily, though he does take a slice to the leg. He rests against a tree and assesses his injuries. And here comes Brienne because coincidence. She introduces herself and says she witnessed his smoke baby kill Renly. She asks if he used blood magic and I’m like, “What the fuck do you think?” Stannis says yes ’cause he ain’t no punk. She sentences him to death in a speech that took entirely too damn long. His last words? “Go on. Do your duty.” Brienne is surprised for only a moment and then she strikes.
Ramsay surveys the damage on the battlefield, kills a surrendering soldier, and then prepares to ride back to Winterfell. Sansa now has to hustle back to her room or find an escape. Unfortunately, she runs into Myranda who draws her bow on Sansa. Reek pleads with Sansa to go with them quietly. Sansa is prepared to die, though. She’s had enough of everyone’s shit, but Myranda won’t kill her – just torture her a bit. Before she can fire an arrow, Reek pushes Myranda and she falls to her death. Horns announce Ramsay’s return so the two run and climb the edge of the tower. Holding hands, they jump.
Arya – Braavos
Nasty-ass Meryn Trant is beating three little girls in the brothel. He gets off on their screams, but there’s one who won’t scream. He dismisses the other two and looks into the defiant girl’s face – she’s the girl Arya coaxed into drinking the Death Water. He punches her in the stomach, and she falls to her knees. When she finally lifts her head: it’s Arya! Trant is shocked and the hesitation costs him. Arya pounces, stabbing in an eye. They fall to the floor and she stabs him in the other eye, stuffs rags into his mouth, and then stabs him in the chest repeatedly. As he cries and holds his wounds, she introduces herself before slitting his throat.
Back at The House of Black and White, Arya returns the little girl’s face to its place on the wall. Jaqen appears and admonishes her for taking a man’s life who wasn’t hers to take; just as the face wasn’t hers to take. As This Bitch holds Arya still, Jaqen says a life is owed to The Many Faced God. He opens a bottle of the Death Water, but swallows it himself. When he falls to the floor dead, Arya cries over him.
But it’s okay because he’s not really Jaqen! This bitch is now Jaqen because Jaqen is no one. Arya removes mask after mask from the body on the floor until it has her face. Then she goes blind.
Jaime and Bronn – Dorne
Jaime prepares to leave Dorne with Myrcella and Trystane. Ellaria gives Myrcella a totally inappropriate kiss goodbye, Tyene once again boasts about her pussy skills to Bronn, and then they’re off. On the boat, Jaime tries to have the “I’m really your Father Uncle” talk with Myrcella, but she reveals she already knows and she’s happy he’s her father. She hugs her surprised Father Uncle and after a moment, Jaime hugs her back. When they break apart, Myrcella’s nose begins to bleed and then she falls into his arms.
On the pier, Ellaria and the Sand Snakes watch the boat sail away. When Ellaria’s nose begins to bleed, Tyene hands her a handkerchief, which Ellaria uses to wipe away the blood and the poison lipstick she’s wearing. She takes the cure from a vial around her neck, and the four walk away like they didn’t just murder a child.
Tyrion, Daario, Jorah a.k.a. Color Me Badd – Meereen
Everyone is sitting around like sick puppies, but Grey Worm is up so that’s good. Tyrion practices his High Valyrian on Grey Worm and Missandei, and she points out that he saved her life. Then talk turns to What the Fuck We Gon’ Do Now? Daario thinks they should head in the direction Drogon flew because it’s not like he can’t change directions. Everyone wants to go, but everyone can’t go. Who’s going to stay behind and poorly run the city? After much pettiness and arguing it’s decided: Grey, Mellie, and Tyrion will stay behind and run things while Jorah and Daario take off in search of the woman they both love. Awkward.
Later, Tyrion watches the two would-be heroes ride off when Varys appears. Yay! Tyrion wants to know how he found him. Varys is like, “Are you new?” Varys offers to stay on and help Tyrion run Meereen and Tyrion agrees.
These two just got the biggest fucking come-up! Also, can you imagine when word gets back to Westeros?
Dany and Drogon – Who the Fuck Knows Where
Dany is dirty and ready to fly back home. But Drogon just wants to chill on the hillside. From the looks of it, he just ate about fiddy-leven animals and the itis is kicking in. She tries asking nicely. Then she just climbs up on his back without asking and he politely does a body roll that sends her flying to the ground. Welp. She tried it.
Drogon is unbothered as fuck.
Fine, Dany will just go look for some food… like she has a choice. While out, she spots people on horses. As they ride closer, she sees they are Dothraki. She quickly removes her ring and drops it to the ground as the blood riders circle her and howl.
Cersei – Kings Landing
Cersei has had just about enough of this jail life. She finally confesses to the High Sparrow, but only to having sex with her cousin. He presses for more, but she remains firm. She will still have to stand trial for her other crimes. She asks to see her son, and since she has confessed, he agrees to let her go home, but after her atonement.
Atonement begins with Cersei stripped and bathed harshly by the septas. Naked, she sits on a stool as the Big Bitch Septa roughly cuts her hair.
A robed Cersei is presented to the people on the steps of the Sept of Baelor. She sees the castle in the distance and it seems to give her a bit of hope. The High Sparrow gives a speech and then Cersei’s robe is removed. As the Big Bitch Septa rings a bell and chants “shame” over and over again, Cersei walks naked through the streets. The common folk jeer, throw things at her, present their genitals, and even spit on her. She keeps her eyes forward and never says a word, even when she stumbles and falls to her knees. The Sparrows keep the onlookers at bay, sometimes using violence.
Only when she’s at the castle entrance does she truly break down into tears. Once in the hall, Qyburn rushes to cover his queen. He coos and says he’ll tend to her bloody feet. Pycelle looks a tad smug; but Kevan Lannister appears unmoved. Qyburn takes great pleasure in introducing Cersei to the newest member of the Kingsguard: a giant of a man in gold armor, including a helmet. He sweeps her into his arms and marches off as Qyburn explains the new guard has taken a vow of silence until all of her grace’s enemies are dead and evil has been banished from the city.
Well, okay then. *gulp*
Jon Snow – The Wall
For some reason, Jon is telling all of the important details of his trip to Sam: the Nights King raised 10,000 dead wildlings by doing no more than shrugging his shoulders, Valyrian steel kills White Walkers, etc. He’s not the one you need to be rallying to your side, buddy.
Sam wants Jon to send him, Gilly, and the baby to Old Town so he can study to be a maester. He’s pretty useless doing anything else. And since they’re probably fucked, Gilly will die at the wall and he’ll die trying to protect her, and that’s just fucking embarrassing. Jon agrees. They toast to Sam losing his virginity and his eventual return as Maester Tarly.
Some time later, Jon is arguing with Davos, who wants Jon to convince the wildlings to fight for Stannis at Winterfell. Jon refuses. Melisandre’s arrival interrupts them. She’s somber and quiet when Jon asks about Stannis and Davos inquires about Shireen. Poor Davos looks devastated.
That night, Jon is in his office looking like I’m Too Old For This Shit. Ollie races in and says there’s a wildling who claims to know where Benjen Stark is. Jon follows Ollie outside where Alliser confirms the story. When Jon clears through a circle of crows to see this wildling, he’s met with a crude grave marker with the word ‘traitor’ on it.
When Jon turns around, he’s immediately stabbed by Alliser who says, “For the Watch.” The men take turns stabbing Jon, each repeating the phrase. When Jon is on his knees, it’s Ollie’s turn. The kid at least has the decency to look sad about this betrayal. After Jon says his name, Ollie follows suit. They walk away as Jon falls on his back.
As his blood spreads across the snow beneath him, Jon Snow dies with his eyes open.
- This finale was largely satisfying. Having read the books, things ended (for the most part) where I thought they would. A few of my predictions weren’t confirmed, but there’s still time for things like Doran’s deception to develop.
- I’ve come up with compelling reasons why Stannis is still alive – but I also have just as compelling reasons why he’s dead.
- Brienne is fucking useless.
- What if Myrcella had kissed her fiance?
- Remember what Cersei said about burning cities to the ground?
- Where the hell is Littlefinger?
- Margaery still in jail or nah?
- Ain’t no way in hell Jon is dead. There are way too many things left for him to do, there’s still the mystery of his parentage. I’m about 98.9% sure he’s not dead and I think I know how we – and everyone else – will find out he’s not. Tune into the podcast to hear my theory.