Hey guys – this episode aired last night. So if you haven’t watched it yet, both what I say and the pictures here are FILLED WITH SPOILERS. So beware!
Game of Thrones is a big deal in our house. The Boy and I have both read the books, though he’s much better at remembering minor details from the books, and how they’re different from the show. Our first conversations when we were dating were about favorite characters from the books/show, and one of our earliest dates was to watch the finale and drink Game of Thrones beer. Last night was finale time, and so theoretically we should have had a large bottle of the Seven Kingdoms, but because we’d had people over in the afternoon, the thought passed us by. Alas. We’ll keep up the tradition next year. For now, my (our) thoughts on the finale in a mini-recap that won’t get into much detail, but will FREAK OUT about the major things that happened.
The opening was unlike one we’d seen before. Very subdued. Very formal in the preparation for the trials by the Faith of Cersei Lannister and Loras Tyrell. Loras went first and submitted to the Faith. He got his mercy, but he also got a seven-pointed star carved into his head, and essentially ended the Tyrell line by promising not to marry and to father no children. And then Cersei didn’t show up for her trial. Instead she dressed in her military chic dress (see the first photo), and waited. And waited. She prevented her son Tommen from going to the trial. The High Sparrow sent out Lancel and other members of the faith militant to find her.
This is when Margaery started to get wise to the situation. She knew how Cersei thought. And she knew that Cersei not being at the trial was a major problem. She made a final move to try and leave the Sept, but was blocked by the High Sparrow’s men. Meanwhile, dumb-dumb Lancel has followed one of Qyburn’s little birds, and crawls into the sewers under the sept. In that dark and dank place, he is stabbed, and has time to crawl close enough to a puddle of wildfire (in a crypt FULL of the stuff), and he watches as the world explodes around him.
Basically, anyone in the Sept was incinerated immediately. People outside within a quarter mile or so are also just dissolved – we watched one extra turn to a skeleton in a cloud of neon green. Everyone who had been inside the Sept (or below it) is gone – nearly the entire Tyrell family. The High Sparrow and the Faith Militant. Those who opposed Cersei. All gone. It was enough to make me and the Boy sit up fully on our sofa and go “HOLY CRAP”, because it’s a shocking scene. Equally shocking is the moment after, when King Tommen sees what has happened, takes off his crown, steps onto the ledge in his room, and steps out the window. SO MANY DEATHS, and it’s only a few minutes into the show! Later, Cersei will be declared Queen Cersei, first of her name, and she is the first woman that we see sit the Iron Throne. And she looks completely badass doing it. Military chic is a look she should continue to rock.
Honestly, the rest of the episode is terrific, but can’t hold a candle (ha!) to what just happened in Kings Landing. Daenerys breaks up with her super-hot boyfriend in order to be available to marry and make alliances in Westeros. This was something that Tyrion had advised her to do, and they talked about the future world she would live in in Westeros. And then Daenerys made him the Hand of the Queen, giving him a newly-made brooch to wear. Seeing Tyrion tear up at this honor, and knowing that he’s backing a good queen…you can tell he’s happy. We don’t get much else from them this episode, but the final shot is of Daenerys, her fleet of ships (filled with Dothraki horsemen!) and her dragons sailing across the Narrow sea towards Dorne to meet with their new allies there.
One of the more satisfying storylines in this episode happens fairly quickly, but is amazing. There is a celebratory feast with the Lannister army and the Freys to commemorate taking Riverrun and killing the Blackfish. Old Walder Frey starts bragging to Jaime about how awesome the Freys are (even though they’re not), and Jaime essentially rolls his eyes and goes away. But in this and the scene around it, we are alerted to a servant girl who seems very interested in Jaime. Later in the episode we find Walder eating alone, being served by this same servant girl. He asks where his sons are. The room is empty, but she says “Here, my Lord.” He looks around and asks again, and she points to the pie, and says they are here. He pulls back the crust to find a toe, and we realize he’s been eating his sons (HOLY CRAP), and then the servant girl peels back her face to reveal that she is Arya Stark, and she is going to be happy as hell to slit Walder Frey’s throat. That’s another name struck off her list, and with Arya back in Westeros, it looks like we might finally get a Stark reunion.
Finally, we get more Stark goodness. First, we have a scene where the Red Lady Melisandre is banished for burning Princess Shireen alive. As Jon watches her ride away, he tells Sansa that they need to trust each other, and that she should be the Lady of Winterfell, since she is the only true Stark. She says she doesn’t think of him as a bastard, and they hug in a tender moment. Sansa is also approached by Littlefinger with an offer of marriage, and she shuts him down. The Boy is worried about this – people who disappoint Littlefinger have a tendency to die, but I’m hopeful for Sansa. She’s learned so much from being so many horrible men, and she’s learned how to play the game. In a very short scene with Bran, he finally gets the chance to go into the mind of the weirwood tree again, and sees what happened with his father at the Tower of Joy. As everyone has expected all season (and before), we discover the true parentage of Jon Snow, and it turns out he is the son of Ned Starks sister Lyanna and presumably Prince Rhaegar Targaryen, which makes him both an heir to the Iron Throne (though still a bastard), and the nephew of one Daenerys Targaryen…in a family where marrying relatives is not only ok, but encouraged. Is this what is meant by “Song of Ice and Fire”? In any case, Jon is later proclaimed King in the North in a cry started by little Lady Lyanna Mormont, who I think is terrific. Sansa seems happy to be the power behind her brother’s throne, and things are starting to look good again for the Starks in Winterfell, despite the coming war with the White Walkers.
And that’s the season. Things are consolidating nicely, and you can see the plots that are starting to come together towards a single point, and with nearly all our main characters on Westeros, it’s only time before someone takes the Iron Throne for good. And it’s now winter, and we have the real and brutal war coming from beyond The Wall. So – who else watched the episode? There was so much in there that I left out. Heck – I didn’t even mention the library at the Citadel, and that’s porn for a librarian like me. What did I leave out that you thought was amazing? What did you think of what went down, and HOW it went down? Are you as excited/anxious as the Boy and I are? Desperate for George RR Martin to finish writing The Winds of Winter? Fingers crossed the rumors of a Christmas/January release are true!
Details: Game of Thrones on HBO, HBO Go and HBO Now