Wow in one the shortest episodes in the series’ history we still got one of the best episodes. A lot of the episode revolved around that final battle, but so much happened even in the events leading up to it. Let’s break it all down.
Let’s start with the place where the least interesting things happened. After their huge win in Highgarden, Cersei is riding high. She promises Tycho Nestoris that he will have his gold soon enough and Jaime himself is even escorting it back to King’s Landing. Nestoris is impressed and even hints that the Iron Bank may throw more support behind the Queen’s endeavors once she delivers on her debts. He is quick to point out though that they will only do so once they have the gold in hand. There is also a throwaway comment by Cersei that she is looking to Essos for a sellsword group called the Golden Company to act as reinforcements in their war against Daenerys. The most interesting thing about this whole sequence has to do with Nestoris’ comments about making sure they have the gold in hand before anything else is done. Despite the gold making it to King’s Landing, I wonder what he will feel about the rather stunning loss in the upcoming battle.
Some of the best stuff this week happened at Winterfell where we got our second homecoming in as many weeks. Arya arrives home to Winterfell only to encounter guards who do not believe that it is her because they believe her to be dead. She eventually convinces them to let her in while they go check with Sansa, but while the two guards are arguing about who will go and tell Sansa about her, she slips away. Eventually they do go tell Sansa who knows right away where Arya has slipped off to. She finds Arya in the crypts of Winterfell looking at the statue of their father. This was one of the best reunions of the entire season as the two of them talk about their long journeys to get back home. It’s interesting because they are both still very much like they were in season 1, but now they have respect and admiration for one another instead of hostility. It was great stuff. While all of this is happening Littlefinger is having a meeting with Bran where he presents him with the dagger that tried to kill him in Season 1. Bran takes it and listens to Baelish’s rambling only to cut him off by repeating a quote that Littlefinger said to Varys in season 3, “Chaos is a ladder”. Baelish is visibly shaken because of the implication here. Bran knows about that conversation and that means he knows that Baelish thrives in chaos and very well knows that he played a huge part in this whole conflict. This has huge implications for later on down the line.
Eventually Sansa takes Arya to visit Bran and the three siblings have a little reunion. Sansa tries to explain to Arya about Bran’s visions and Bran tells Arya how he saw her at the crossroads. He mentions that he knows she was going to go King’s Landing to kill Cersei and even brings up her list. Sansa starts realizing that Arya is not the little girl that she left behind in King’s Landing. Bran then gives her the dagger Littlefinger gave him because she will have more use for it than he. Later on Arya sees Brienne and Podrick training in the yard and as usual Brienne is kicking Pod’s ass. Arya asks to train because it has been a while and Brienne scoffs at her tiny sword. Unfortunately Brienne then sees what Arya can do and seems quite impressed with their duel which ends with them holding blades to each other’s throats. Brienne asks who taught Arya to do all of that and in a nice nod to her masters at the House of Black and White, Arya tells her “No one”. Sansa and Baelish watch all of this as Sansa looks on impressed and Baelish looks super worried. Later on Meera comes to visit Bran and say that she is leaving because she needs to warn her family and be with them. She is upset that all Bran has to say is thank you and quite frankly I don’t blame her. She did a lot for him and lost a lot for him. He was kind of being a dick.
Over at Dragonstone Jon shows Dany the caves of dragon glass that lay beneath the castle. She is impressed by all that is there and Davos remarks there should be enough for all of the weapons they need. Jon then takes her further into the cave where he shows her ancient paintings on the walls most likely done by the Children of the Forest. They show some familiar patterns that we have seen the White Walkers lay human body parts in and even some White Walkers themselves including the Night King. Jon tries to use this to convince Dany why his cause is so important. Dany says she will fight for him…..if he bends the knee. Upon leaving the cave Dany learns that they have taken Casterly Rock, but have lost Highgarden. She is furious with Tyrion and wants to take action now. Tyrion wants to continue with his plan, but Dany silences him and asks Jon for his advice. Jon says burned corpses and fear will be more of the same and people want something different. This some how leads to the plan we see later on.
Also at Dragonstone Theon and some of the remaining Iron Born show up to ask for help getting Yara back. This provides us with the Jon Snow and Theon reunion which goes just about as planned. Its awkward to the max and Jon says the only reason he is not killing Theon right now is because of what he did for Sansa. They ask for Daenerys, but are told she is not there at the moment.
The Fields Outside of King’s Landing
The first scene we get towards the beginning of the episode sees Jaime getting some gold out from the plunder to give Bronn, who is still moaning about not getting his castle. Jaime tasks him, Randyll Tarly and Dickon Tarly to make sure the gold gets to King’s Landing safely. Meanwhile he will stay with the supply train of food that is heading that way.
Later on we get that great cut from Jon telling Theon that Dany wasn’t at Dragonstone to the fields outside King’s Landing. Randyll returns and says the gold is safely inside the city walls and as they are talking they hear something in the distance. Jaime readies his troops and as a viewer we know what is coming and damn is it exciting. From the moment you see those Dothraki soldiers crest the hill and Dany on Drogon coming riding over you know it’s on. The shots are beautiful and the special effects amazing. Enough to give you goosebumps. Drogon takes the lead as he burns up a hole in the Lannister line just big enough for the the Dothraki to come charging through. The battle rages on fiercely as Drogon burns up wagon after wagon of food and more and more soldiers. At one point Jaime is fighting a Dothraki solider with two arakhs and is saved by Dickon Tarly at the last moment. Bronn is fighting valiantly and manages to make it through the chaos to the giant ballista they were carrying just in case. He takes one shot at Drogon and misses. Dany comes around for a second pass and barrels right at the ballista as Bronn is able to get off one last shot into Drogon’s shoulder before the dragon blows it up in a huge fireball as Bronn dives away. From a distance Tyrion watches the carnage and almost looks horrified at what is happening. He then sees Dany land to wrench the bolt out of Drogon’s shoulder and notices his brother pick up a spear. Under his breath he mutters, “You fucking idiot”. We were all thinking the same thing. He charges at Dany and Drogon and the dragon turns his head to turn Jaime into a crispy dinner when out of nowhere Bronn dives and knocks Jaime off his horse into the river. The final shot is of Jaime falling to the bottom of the river as we cut to black.
A couple of things about this battle. It shows how good this show is that somehow I was cheering for characters on both sides to make it out alive. Like I don’t want Jaime or Bronn to die, but I also don’t want Dany or Drogon to die either. For each to win something like that has to happen and the fact that the writing has made you love all of those characters is ridiculous. Now in my mind there is no way that Jaime or Bronn is dead, but man Jaime was wearing full armor and that stuff is freaking heavy. The weight of that alone could drown him. There would need to be some miracle to save him. Like I said before the special effects, the shots, the dialogue, just everything about this scene was perfect. Honestly one of the best episodes in the show’s history and definitely the best of this season. It makes me so sad that this is going to be so short. Only three week’s left! Its almost soul crushing.
Well those are all my thoughts. If I think of anything else I will update my recap. Don’t forget to comment your thoughts down below and share this post around! Until next time…valar morghulis.