Monday, August 14, 2017

Game of Thrones: Eastwatch

Image result for game of thrones S7

Last weeks episode was going to be tough to match- after all, how do you top  a fire breathing dragon laying waste to armies? Plus all the other fun stuff- Arya vs. Brienne! This week we have something a bit different- a reminder that the true threat is still on the way. The army of the dead is marching on Eastwatch- the outpost that anchors one end of the Wall. And by the end of the episode some of the major players- and a few minor ones- are going to come together, to venture north on a suicidal mission to prove that the dead are on the march. But before that a lot of other things happen- two in particular that are very important, or could be, for book readers. In that sense this may be one of the most consequential episodes ever.

Spoilers for this episode of Game of Thrones, and for the books as well.

I think one of the big debates coming out of this one will be about Dany. Is she a hero? A villain? Neither? Book readers have been debating Dany for years, and there are all sorts of theories that she'll succumb to the Targaryen madness, like her father did. Here she offers the Lannister prisoners their lives if they bend the knee- Drogon convinces more than a few to do so, which was hilarious- but when Randyll Tarly refuses to bend the knee, Dany has him barbequed. Tyrion is horrified and tries in vain to dissuade her, but she's committed.  

Later when Tyrion is discussing the turn of events with Varys, he seems to be trying to convince himself she was justified in what she did. Varys too is skeptical. When Tyrion and Varys are debating Dany's ethics you know there's a problem. This was an absolutely critical conversation to see these two having- her two most influential advisors, concerned that Dany could emulate her father, the Mad King.

Dany returns to Dragonstone and meets Jon overlooking the sea. Drogon comes right up to him- a terrifying sight- and Jon oh so tentatively reaches out to touch him. Even Dany didn't know what was going to happen there. The fact that Drogon allowed Jon to touch him sure seems to add credence to theories about Jon being a Targaryen. And afterward Jon and Dany got to know each other a little more, and she asked him about what Davos said- about Jon taking a knife to the heart- but before they can get further into that Jorah returns. 

Dany's happy to see him, and it was interesting to see him and Jon size each other up. And later when he accompanies Jon to the north we have two people who Dany cares for a great deal- for let's be honest she's got a thing for Jon already- going into danger together. It'll be interesting to see if Mormont makes it back.

Jaime and Cersei disagree about the war but Jaime appears to be all in when Cersei reveals she's pregnant. There's been debate on this score as well, with eagle-eyed book readers noticing some hints, but this is the first confirmation that she is pregnant. Whether the books will follow this route remains to be seen. At this point the Jaime redemption arc that many of us are waiting for seems to not be happening, or at least not this season?

One of the biggest revelations in the show to date is a little nugget that Gilly gives to Sam, as she's reading through old maester accounts. Turns out a maester annulled a marriage for Prince Rhaegar and remarried him somewhere in Dorne. Fans have long wondered if Rhaegar married Lyanna Stark or just ran away with her, and also what happened to his marriage to Elia of Dorne? Well at least on the show we know. Rhaegar got an annulment and married Lyanna Stark. Why does that matter? Because it means Jon Snow is a Targaryen/ Stark and not a bastard at all. This has never been shown in the books, and this alone makes this revelation huge.

Littlefinger has been rather unremarkable this season, but here he is spotted by Arya doing some plotting. Paying off a servant girl, talking to Lords Glover and Royce, then getting a message from maester Wolkan that looks shifty. Arya steals into his room to find it, but it looks like Littlefinger has one up on her, planting the wrong message for her to find? A message sure to inflame tensions between her and Sansa.

My biggest issue with this episode is the idea of taking a dead thing to Cersei. It's been made abundantly clear that Cersei has no real army left. Cersei has Kings Landing and that's it- so why do they care if she's onboard for the war in the north? She doesn't have much to offer. The King in the North is going to risk his life trying to bring proof south, when all the important players already believe. Seems like a waste of time. And we know it's going to have big consequences, so it matters.

So...after almost an hour we finally get to Eastwatch! This is where Jon and company plan to head north- and they're going to have some company, as the Hound is there along with Thoros and Beric. Tormund is also in the group, as well as Gendry, so we have a pretty capable band of seven heading into the north.  

Random Thoughts

"Dragons are where our partnership ends," says Bronn to Jaime. Spoken like a true mercenary! 

So long Dickon Tarly! The actor who plays him, Tom Hopper, just came into the role and he's already gone. But he took the honorable way out (at least to his thinking) by standing with his father at the end. He was of course also Billy Bones from Black Sails- it would have been nice to see him do more. I guess now Sam is heir to House Tarly? 

Drogon looked amazing. The scene where he landed and came up to Jon, and later when he and his brothers were wheeling in the sky over Dragonstone- just an amazing visual. 

The Bran sequence with the ravens going north was amazing.

Best exchange of the night:Tyrion and Varys discussing the message to Jon Snow. Tyrion asks him if he's read it.  
"It's a sealed scroll for the King in the North."
"What's it say?"
"Nothing good."

"I haven't given you permission to leave," Dany tells Jon when they discuss going north of the Wall.

Jenny of Oldstones reference! During the maesters' meeting one of them mentions the woman who claimed to be descended from the Children of the Forest. Also a prophet is mentioned who predicted the Drowned God would rise to defeat Aegon the Conqueror. This is interesting given the theory out there that Euron Crows Eye is going to raise some creature from the deep, perhaps a manifestation of the Drowned God, in the books.  

Jon finds out that Arya and Bran are alive.

 "Thought you might still be rowing," Davos tells Gendry when he finds him. A little nod to the fans there. And speaking of Gendry- nice moves with the warhammer. Nice to see a bastard of Baratheon and a bastard (at least for now) of Stark fighting together, just like Robert and Ned. 

20 comments:

  1. I agree with you about the trip north to convince Cersei-it seems a bit crazy and for no real reward. Like you can trust her anyway! I liked a good many things in this episode like Gendry, Davos and his bribery, Tormund hoping to see Brienne, The Brotherhood, the ravens, bastard bonding, Drogon and Jon...good episode overall. But it is all going to kick off pretty soon!

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    1. Exactly- even if they convince her, they can't trust her! It's no- win. Nice to see Gendry back.

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  2. I am SO glad I read this. I was distracted with the baby when they talked so I missed the preggo part!

    And omg, yes I was distracted yet again when Sam was talking to her and I did hear the annulment but not who.

    Sheesh, I need to pay attention

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    1. Glad I could help :) They're sneaky little bastards, sneaking those mentions in there.

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  3. I love the dragons. They look so cool, and watching them BBQ people is scary. I’m glad Jon didn’t get BBQed. I’m curious about what Littlefinger is up to. It can’t be good.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

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    1. I LOVE the dragons- they are doing such a good job with them. When Drogon landed by Jon he looked terrifying. And Littlefinger is such a shit- I hope he gets his soon :)

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  4. Your recaps are so good that I feel like I've watched it lol

    For What It's Worth

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  5. I had totally missed that she was pregnant until I was reading recaps. I have no idea how I missed that!! I wonder what it means to the prophecy from whatever season they showed it. Loved the Jon /Dragon moment. I knew Arya couldn't be that could to pull one over on Littlefinger that easily. Interested to see how this plays out next episode!

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    1. It was easy to miss because it was quick. And I'm surprised they went there- it REALLY makes me wonder now about the books, since it's been a theory for a while. Good point about the prophecy- how DOES it fit in? I'm not sure...

      Jon & Drogon were awesome.

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  6. I love Drogon and especially his interaction with Jon. It's so obvious Dany cares about Jon already. I hope Cersei isn't pregnant and Jamie finds out and kills her. I just want her dead. Also, as I mentioned on Chuckles blog, I don't care if Arya takes out Littlefinger AND Sansa at this point because she is grating my nerves. She always appears so smug!

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    1. Drogon and Jon were great. And yes I think there's a little spark there between those two! Cersei needs to go. Jaime too, lol he's irritating me.

      I like Sansa but if she really is being shifty, then I agree.

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  7. I also missed Cersei saying she was pregnant but got the idea when Jamie held her. I guess I wasn't already annoyed with Cersei I wasn't paying attention to what she was saying lol. I loved the scene with Jon and Dragon. I was telling my husband OMG Dragon recognizes him as a Targaryen lol. I can't wait to see what happens next!!

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    1. I was so irked when Jaime held her. They're supposed to be drawing apart, not coming closer. And yes- I actually think that's one of the best moments of the series, when Jon and Drogon came face to face, and Drogon was like hey dude.

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  8. Am I the only one who wondered if Cersei was lying ? I don't know, it seems something she'd do to keep Jaime with her.
    You haven't said anything about the conversation between Arya and Sansa, I know where Arya's coming from and all of that but I was really surprised. Beheading those who disagree with you ? Seriously ? I knew that when Nymeria turned away, Arya wasn't ready to be a "full Stark" but I didn't realize she was at that point.

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    1. She could be!

      Good point. I think Arya sees things through the lens of her loyalty to Jon, and her past with Sansa. Even though they've both grown and hopefully forgiven each other, I think Arya would pick Jon over S in a heartbeat- especially if she thinks northern lords are going disloyal. Having said that, goping right to beheading seemed a little quick. Maybe they're just writing her as a badass for fans? I really think the two of them will be together at the end of the season, and LF will be toast.

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  9. I just came over from Chuckles blog post about GOT. Like at hers, I jumped to the comments to avoid spoilers. I just finished the first season and starting the next one tomorrow. I am so enthralled and in awe of this series!

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  10. Great point about that motley crew facing the Night King and the White Walkers- to what end? I mean, I love the rather misfit group that's assembled and can't wait to see what they do together, but risking their lives like that really isn't worth it.

    At this point I just want to slap Jaime with his golden hand because Cersei just keeps digging her claws into him. So terribly disappointed with his character this season.

    Gendry- YEAH! After Hot Pie returned a couple of weeks ago, I felt like Gendry had to be next, LOL.

    I gotta admit, I usually half pay attention during Sam and Gilly's scenes, so of course they gave one of the most crucial lines of dialogue ever to Gilly, LOL! I'd been hoping to see a Jon/Drogon interaction, and that scene totally delivered!

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  11. "Dragons are where our partnership ends" cracked me up! that's the perfection of GoT the characters are so true to their nature :)

    I keep waiting for the scene where Danny loses it with Jon "so you aren't gonna bend the freaking knee??" and goes all "dracaris!!!" on him and... being a targaryan.. of course he is fire proof and he emerges from the flames and Danny is like OOPS! hahahaha :D

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    1. That would be a great scene! OMG have you seen the leaked episode yet? I have and it's AMAZEBALLS ON A NEW LEVEL!

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