Note: This is last week’s Game of Thoughts, which was postponed due to the Orlando shooting. I am writing this on Sunday, June 19th, for posting on Monday morning. I will do my best to recap The Battle of the Bastards and get that posted the same time, but I am going to a memorial event tonight and am not sure when I’ll be home. The tragedy hit us hard and we are picking up the pieces; but part of putting our lives back together means doing it with new or missing pieces.
Hello and welcome to Game of Thoughts! This is a feature in which I recap the latest episode of everyone’s favorite grimdark fantasy, Game of Thrones. We do things fun around here so for more in-depth coverage of big themes, check out Patrick Sponaugle‘s incredibly witty and fun blog posts. Note: These recaps WILL contain spoilers.
Let’s DO THIS!
- Lady Crane is Killing It Onstage – The people love her! Rightfully so! She has a lovely maternal chemistry with Arya, who is really learning to trust somebody again and that’s just beautiful. I wonder if they’ll run away together and have happy ending, although Arya talking about leaving Westeros is weird. Lady Crane’s backstory is a bit overwritten, especially since OH SHE’S DOWN, LADY CRANE IS DOWN. Major fumble on the part of the showrunners, who have defaulted to the tired trope of making us fall in love with character in like three episodes and then killing her. BAD FORM, WRITERS. And now we’ve got Arya going long, going all the way despite a badly reopened wound and copious obstacles. And the Waif is following like some kind of pasty Terminator, she’s taking her time, she’s following the blood trail but she’s curiously uninterested in keeping her Faceless Man Assassinating under the table as they are supposed to do. And now she’s caught up with Arya and OH! OH WE HAVE A MAJOR REVERSAL HERE. Not the best written segment of the season by any means, but at least we’re down a Waif.
- The Dream Team Has Been Split Up – No! Varys is taking an expedition, which to me implies some kind of exploration but who the hell knows anymore. Maybe he’s after the horn of … of… one of those horns from the book that will give Dany control over her dragons, or maybe he’s drumming up some more support for our Mother of Dragons. Either way, this did not feel like a permanent good-bye. If anything Varys’s facedown with the other Red Priestess a few episodes ago indicates he’s aware of some seriously raised stakes, and he’s out to make sure Dany’s playbook can keep up. Varys has been working a very solid ‘No Magic’ platform for some time and I hope he’s not compromising his own beliefs, but also I do because Not-Melisandre seems to be Melisandre-ing even harder than the original version did.
- And We’re Back on Drunk History With Cersei Lannister – In this episode, Cersei is done being bullied by the Sparrows has decided to let them know. She won’t go to the High Sparrow, but she sends The Mountain to him and it’s incredible how surprised the Sparrows were when Dead Mountain pulled that dude’s head off. They’ve brought clubs, burlap, and chains to a giant armored zombie fight and Lancel at least should have known better, seeing as he actually had combat experience. Cersei’s feeling pretty good about her trial by combat now, because she has no imagination and the intelligence of a microwaved chicken nugget that’s still frozen inside. I’d blame the wine, but let’s be real, she’s always been like this.
- AND WE’RE LIVE IN THE RIVERLANDS – But apparently this was a massive fakeout and everyone with a ticket for ‘The Swordfight We’ve Been Waiting For’ really, really wants their money back. The moment with Bronn and Pod was nice, but it went on a little too long before we got to the Meat and Potatoes, which is also Jaime and Brienne’s fanfic names. We had a nice Jedi moment of Brienne telling Jaime she knew there was still good in him, and Jaime recognizing that he’s not the person she thinks he is, but maybe he could be (I guess?). Then he sends her off to negotiate terms with the Blackfish which is committing major treason against Lannister/Frey interests. I was ‘Awwww-ing’ so hard during this scene.
- Kevan Lannister Is Doing Great For a Dead Man – Seriously. In the books he’s dead by now but what a loss, his candid takedowns of Cersei are so good they ought to be drizzled over cupcakes. He’s done with her shit and Tywin isn’t calling the shots anymore, and it almost looks like the kingdom is on its way toward something resembling order. (Aside – I wonder if that’s Varys’s mission? Is he coming back to Westeros to kill Kevan so the country will be less secure and therefore easier for Danaerys to conquer?) Anyway, Cersei’s Ace in the Hole has been taken away from her, and ‘a council of septons’ is never good news for anyone. Which leads Cersei to ask Non-Maester Qyburn about ‘THE RUMOR’ and we all know she’s talking about Wildfire.
- Ain’t No Party Like a Tyrion Party – And Missandei and Gray Worm are finally starting to get down, and I’m sorry the Stark punchline took me a minute but then I was like BWAH. Missandei’s joke is a good try and her buzzed giggle was a treasure. I was not prepared for a sea-mounted fire trebuchet attack and apparently neither was Meereen, but Danaerys is back y’all so that ought to be taken care of in a timely manner. She even had that look parents do when they come home and find the house in ruins after a rager.
- Edmure Tully is Looking Rough and Speaking Truth – I can’t lie, for most of the show I’ve been wondering why they would cast an actor as great as Tobias Menzies (ROME!!!) and then have him doof around in the background for 4 seasons. Now I know – it was for this moment right here. Edmure has been kept in a dungeon for a while and has so run out of fucks that other people (whose name rhymes with Haime Jannister) are trying to give him fucks and he’s having none of it. NONE. And when Blaime Kannister realizes that Edmure is having none of what he’s selling, he throws one last hail mary pass which is coincidentally what he plans to do with Edmure’s son – catapult the baby over the walls of Riverrun. Jaime seems to be back to pre-show Jaime in which he would burn the world down just to be with Cersei… or is he? I had been waiting for the Riverrun storyline for a long time and I have to say I’m a bit disappointed with how they handled it, especially show-Jaime’s character, but at least he had that last good-bye with Brienne. That really felt like a well-deserved good-bye. The Freys entering Riverrun was most upsetting. The Blackfish dying off-screen – REALLY showrunners? Really?
- Meet Four New Friends With Jokes And –Oh – For a moment it seemed like another character was being introduced, and then BLAMMO. Maybe I forgot, but how did the Hound know these guys were with the Brotherhood? Or whatever? At this point he is really behaving like his brother, a fact taht would no doubt send him into another murderous rage. The fact that Beric Dondarrion is back seems to indicate that Lady Stoneheart is not in charge, but it wouldn’t surprise me if she suddenly jumped out of a box and took over the Brotherhood. The Hound’s horse-trading with the dead guys was odd, and then he gets a job offer. Killing people for a good reason is right up his alley, but the scene ends before we get closure on whether he’s accepted or not.
- Back in the House of Black and White Pancakes – Jaqen seems pleased that Arya killed the Waif, and that she’s back as Arya Stark and going back to Westeros. Which is all totally against the HB&WP Rules but whatever, Arya’s going back and we’re done here. If he was really serious about the Faceless Man rules he would have made her mop the damn floor before she left. “Yeah I’m quitting this job you gave me and let me keep even though I screwed it up almost all the time, and also I made a mess on your floor when I killed the only other staff here. The mop and bucket’s in the closet. ARYA OUT.’
So that’s episode 8 in a nutshell! I don’t remember enough from this week’s trailer to write about it, other than if Jon doesn’t kill Ramsay then I don’t know what I’ll do with my life. And I’m pretty sure Wun-Wun is going to die, and I just can’t deal with that fact. I CAN’T.
So please check back! I will try my best to get a post up on TBOB, or SnowBowl, as it’s also known. Have a great day!