Game of Thrones 5.7 – The Gift

Previously! LOADS. Most of it awful. Whee!!

"All around me are familiar faces, worn out places, worn out faces..."

“All around me are familiar faces, worn out places, worn out faces…”

But first! We open with horsies being prepped for a trip up north.Gjördkr the Bær Fuçkër is released from his restraints, and the men of the Watch don’t like it. But then, most of them don’t like any of Jon Snow’s decisions.

Lord Butt Hurt: A word, Lord Commander? About this plan of yours with the Wildling?
Jon: Of course, trusted fellow Man of the Black Watch. Please, continue.
LBH: [farts into hand, shoves it in Jon’s face]
Jon: …yes, thank you. [looks to camera like its The Office]

Before he heads out, however…
Sam: Lord Commander? What with you leveling up, you’ve unlocked Dragonglass. [hands some over]
Jon: Sweet! [checks its DMG, notes +10DMR when kitted out in full Wolf Armor]

There’s an incredibly ominous scene with a dying Maester Aemon giggling and cooing over Gilly’s child, WeeMorsel, then telling her in a fierce tone to get further south before it’s too late. (And a reminder that the Mad King Aegon—it’s Aegon Targaryen who was the Wildfire wonk, yes? (GOT IT!) reminder that every Targaryen isn’t always Mad. I suppose this is foreshadowing for Daenerys? OR JON?! [/conspiracy theories])

HEY A SCENE THAT IS GOING TO REMIND ME OF THE BAD PLACE. Theon has a breakfast tray for the newlyweds, which is basically Sansa sobbing in bed. HEY B-HOLES FROM LAST WEEK: TAKE NOTE THAT SHE IS IN DISTRESS. Nope, sorry, not going to give in to those neckbeards who wanted to explain why Sansa wasn’t raped. Not gonna do it. Only had to use the Ban-Hammer twice, so— [deep breath]…Sorry, I had several nobodies (as in they’re not a part of our terrific and respectful community here) come after me for being unhappy last week, and I’m still heated about it, apparently.

And hoooooooly shit it just gets worse. We learn that Theon isn’t going to help her because he’s broken. And every night she goes through the whole “wedding night rape” thing again, a sort of Real Life Un-Idealized Rapunzel meets Groundhog Day story, and she has horrible bruises all over her arms. Sansa, why haven’t you put your light in the window?? Is Theon the only one who comes to tend to you!?

Me: this can’t get any worse.

Right, that’s the part I keep forgetting. Why am I doing this to myself auuuugh!?

literally me

Sansa, her spine stronger than steel even though her outsides are as easy to tear as silk, refuses to call Theon “Reek.” He is Theon Greyjoy, last surviving son of Baelon Greyjoy of the Iron Islands. Now nut up—oh, sorry, right—cowboy up and put a candle in the window, post haste.

Theon goes through a harsh storm, the broken tower in sight, and we see him climbing stairs, the candle in his hand, and I bet you a TRILLION dollars he’s going to Ramsay with it. That’s what that ominous music as they cut to the tower meant. AND YEP, I FREAKING KNEW IT, Reek, you son of a dick. Never forget, he isn’t Theon. Never Theon, only Reek.

Cut to Brienne staring at the tower, waiting for a light that isn’t coming. DAMMIT ALL TO HELL.

There is a light burning, but it’s for Wee Morsel and Aemon, who is passing through the veil with Gilly watching over him and Sam insisting he stay, too. Aemon cries for Egg (Aegon), and says, “Egg… I dreamt that I was old,” his face looking younger and pain-free in the dim light as he crosses over.

At his memorial the next day, Sam reminds us that Targaryens can be gentle, wise and kind. (Did it skip Daenerys? BOOM! ROASTED.) Wait, no, Maester Aemon is because we all know what happens when you don’t burn the bodies.

He was the blood of the dragon, but now his fire has gone out. And now his Watch is ended. RIP, lovely sweet man.

Lord Butt Hurt, in a massive display of Piss Poor Manners at a Funeral, reminds Sam that all of his friends are going bye bye. Maybe Sam will go bye bye, too. NO, NOT RED LEADER SAMWELL GAMGEE PORKINS! Sam, stay on target! [sniffs]

Sansa visits Ramsay where he oversees some fortifications to Winterfell, his creepy face blank until he switches on his Psychopath #1 smile for her benefit. Feeling proud of himself, he peacocks about, ignoring that he just left a weapon lying out. Sansa doesn’t ignore it, and there’s my girl! (Do you think he did it on purpose?) He blathers on about Stannis heading to them, more peacocking, and Sansa, remembering how she tripped Joffrey up by using her words, reminds Ramsay that Walda is having a Baby Heir, making Ramsay the Spare.

Ramsay: I am your king!
Sansa: Well I didn’t vote for you. Also, you’re a bastard. Like, literally and figuratively.
Sansa: And the King who “naturalized” you? Another bastard. And an incest flower in Cersei’s attic. Good job!
Ramsay: You are making me very angry. You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry. Also, info about your brother Jon Snow.

Sansa, dear sweet child that she is, eagerly sops up the knowledge that Jon has risen in rank, desperate for any news of any family member, save Robyn Arryn, who is probably making lusty eyes at a cow’s udder right about now. Hey guess what she could have gone the rest of her life not knowing? That Ramsay has taken her old lady friend, she of the North, and has flayed her, and all thanks to Reek letting him know.


Me: D:

He reminds Sansa how long the nights are becoming with a leer. YEP. IT CAN ALWAYS BE WORSE.

Stannis’ men are a bunch of Laura’s, in that they are totally pussing out in the cold. How cold is it?

[taps mic] Is this thing on? It’s so cold, the horses are dying in scores! It’s so cold, they literally can’t move because the supply lines are frozen. It’s so cold, that the banner-men are leaving in droves! But nothing is colder than Stannis’ voice as he explains to Ser Davos that there will be no retreating, no waiting. There is no try, only do. I am not afraid.

Davos: [throat froggy] You… will be. (coughs) That was weird… [/Star Wars jokes]



So… the Red Woman can’t do any hocus pocus here? Stannis is getting pretty irritated with this whole “not becoming a king” thing. But she has seen them in Winterfell, has seen the Bolton’s banners lowered. (But has she seen her way back to red hair? I thought it had returned last week? I feel like it’s important, her hair color. IDK.)

Fire Crotch Mage: Say, we should toooootally bleed out little Newt to insure your victory.
FCM: Look, if you become king, you’ll be so super sexy to me.
Stannis: Nope, that’s not going to work this time.

Cut to: the Wall where ha ha, casual attempted rape of Gilly where Sam gets his face beat in by two dudes, still gets up, and then PUPPY SAVES THE DAY, YAY DIREWOLF! Who’s a good boy? You are!!

(Okay, and that was pretty bad ass of Sam, but if I may: there are magic giant wolf puppies, magic shadow ninjas, men turning into living stone, and flying fucking fire-breathing lizards. You can STRETCH YOUR IMAGINATION beyond rape.)

Sam passes out, but Gilly’s there to tend him, ho hum, same old narrative for thousands of years, yawn.

These two have no friends, basically. So they’ll be each other’s friends. And she kisses him, then proceeds to have sex with him, and I hate the Nice Guy Narrative a lot. Teaching little boys all over the world that wearing a lady down, patiently waiting her out until she gives up and gives in is No Bueno.

Just me? Am I the only one who was really bothered by that scene? ETA: APPARENTLY. By the way, I had a lightbulb moment about why I’m possibly viewing this scene in this particular light here, thanks to awesome reader Lisa.

Things I’m NOT bothered by: Jorah wearing a collar and leather wristlets, rawr. He’s sold on the open market for 20 gold pieces, called honors. Tyrion tries to follow, then explains how he’s a package deal, and a great fighter as well. He proceeds to beat the shit out of the guy who has been whipping him, hahaha, and the man who bought Jorah throws in a few extra pieces because Tyrion’s “funny.” And smart. Brilliant, even. (Is this the end of our wonderful pirate Malko, on the show?]

Tyrion tries to use psychology on his new master, how if he’s made a free man, why, he’ll make sure his owner—ha—doesn’t get into any trouble. Hmm, Jorah looks troubled, rubbing at the center of his chest. I wonder why…

Daenerys is getting an itch scratched with Daario. Ah. [A single tear tracks down Jorah’s face, but he isn’t sure why] Daario would really prefer she marry him instead of that Son of a bi[strike]Harpy. But since she can’t just do what she’d like in that respect, she should gather every single Master in Meereen on the day of the Great Games (Olympics? Sweet!) and slaughter them. Um, she’s trying this “not killing everyone I see who angers me” thing, Daario? Look into it?

“All kings are either butchers or meat.” Welp, he’s not wrong!

In King’s Landing, the religious freaks are hanging on the steps of the citadel like a bunch of ’50s leather toughs. I’m surprised one of them doesn’t pull out a switchblade-comb, stroking his greasy locks back into a D.A. You know, for Jesus, or whatever the Westeros equal is.

Lady Olenna goes to the High Sparrow full of piss and vinegar, spoiling for a fight. She believes he’s a fraud, and buddy, she’s had enough years of spotting them to know ’em when she sees ’em. So what, he’s going to use her grandbabies as an example when the whole damn town is filled with sinners?

High Septon: Yes.
Lady Olenna: Fine. You want equality? Everyone in KL can starve equally, how you like them non-delivered apples?

“We are the many, and you are the few,” he tells her. “And when the many stop fearing the few…” He gives dealer hands and bails.

[’40s radio voice] Things aren’t looking too good for our High Garden darlings! But wait! A mockingbird arrives! A note with a familiar Lord Baelish seal on it is handed to a departing Lady Olenna.

I have a 13 year old, Cersei. I understand this face all too well.

I have a 13 year old, Cersei. I understand this face all too well.

Aww, King Tommen is on a hunger strike because his Special Purpose isn’t there to warm his bed. Plus, no one’s seen Ser Pounce, and Tommen needs cuddles!

Cersei: You sound fussy. Does diddums need a nap?
Tommen: [knuckles sleep away with his widdle fists] No!

Hey, you know what would be awesome? If Tommen’s stones dropped all the way, he told his mummy to shut it, declared the religious wonks traitors to the crown, sent the Gold Cloaks and whoever else after them, rounding them up and maybe slaughtering them, I don’t know, I’m getting blood thirsty, and TOOK BACK HIS KINGDOM. But what do I know?

Cersei gives him advice that I’m pretty sure is meant for herself, about being confronted with things beyond your control (religious fervor), things you can’t prepare for (religious wonks coming for your incestuous ass), things that may not be nice (religious wonks killing the king because he’s an incest baby and most definitely his mother).

Tommen’s all, Nah, ma, I’m all about that starting a war for the lady I loved life. GOOD JOB, A+ THINKING, KID! Cersei, though says, Margaery will be killed first, and she haaaates when Tommen says he loves his wife. She literally has an eye twitch at that, wow, and she says passionately that she will do anything to keep him safe, anything, and that means doing things that aren’t in his best interest, but in her perceived best interests for him. Yeesh.

Jaime is allowed to see his daughter, er, niece, for a super stilted convo that all teen girls have with their daddies who beat up their boyfriends. (Well, mostly this happens in Florida.) Well, UncleDaddy, she’s in LOVE okay? Mommy made her go there, and she DID, right? And it was hot and gross at first, but she found a hairdresser she likes and they let her stay up late, and no one tells her what to wear and they all think she’s REALLY COOL, OKAY?! So she’s staying in Dorne, and she’s going to marry her boyfriend, and he is going to buy her a pony and she is going to name it NOT JAIME. So there! =P

Jaime: Uh… what?
Bronn: How about the rest of that song that probably spells either mine or Jaime’s doom? Hey, ha, probably both of us. TWO THREE FOUR! “The Dornishman’s taken my life, but what does it matter, for I’ve already tasted his wife.”

Hahaha! Oberyn’s daughters, in a nearby cell, smirk. Okay, just one does, and damn, she’s thirsty for some Bronn, showing her titties and batting her eyelashes at him, and–

Admiral Akbar: IT’S A TRAP. [Sorry, I’m always going to revert to Star Wars, you should know this by now]

[NSFW IMAGE OF BEWBS, BASICALLY SHE GOT THEM TV TITTIES <– The best line from Orange is the New Black, btw.]

She asks about his arm, stroking herself, and yep, I’m guessing there was poison in the blade, sex poison. DIBS ON ALL GIRL GLAM-ROCK BAND, SEX POISON.

I mean, yeah, she’s gorgeous. His vision begins to go, his nose bleeds, and she says there was a poison on her blade called the Long Farewell. Bye bye, buddy. No no, wait, she’s the most beautiful woman in the world, come on! She tosses him the antidote just in the nick of time. Damn, girl. That’s some La Femme Dornita shizz.

Baelish goes to his ransacked business in KL. Lady Olenna meets him there, he blathers on about it until she cuts him off. “You’ve always been rather impressed with yourself.” Ha ha ha! Oh, and Ramsay Bolton? THIS is the bastard who has climbed to ever greater heights, the one you should be focused on in the immediate future.

(Is he a bastard? I mean, he is, but like, birth-wise? Not that it matters to me, mind you. BUT GOT IT, THANKS, READERS! lower-case b-bastard, not literal, forgot about that line from S1 with Catelyn.)

She lets him know that when they got in bed together, that stuff is ’til death do us part with her. They killed Joffrey as a team, after all, and that’s the kind of bro stuff that doesn’t leave you, right? And should he decide to attack her person, or hires someone to do it, she’s prepared for that, too. And it’ll make what the Boltons do look like child’s play. So! Any plans? Yep! He has a young man for her. (I think she’s past being interested in that sort of thing, Baelish. Now, a platter of cheese…)

Hell yeah, fighting pits! Jorah is preparing himself at the entry level, but oho, the Queen will be sitting court side, so kick ass! Jorah is going to drive for the hoop HARD, yo. He’s not selected for first string, however, but when he hears Daenerys is outside, he goes running to see, his heart welling (and aching with longing.)

It is straight up Spartacus out on the killing floor with the blood spray and slaughter, and Daenerys is really not enjoying herself and wants to leave. Jorah suits up and heads out, uncaring that he wasn’t selected, and kills everyone in his path like a mother fucking bad ass. (Side note, Daenerys’ dress is so pretty!)

I want to wear this every day. YES EVEN TO THE GAS STATION. Maybe ESPECIALLY there. Please note the necklace is a dragon. :)

I want to wear this every day. YES EVEN TO THE GAS STATION. Maybe ESPECIALLY there. Please note the necklace is a dragon. :)

Maybe my favorite fight is Jorah ripping a helmet off a contender and bashing him over the head with it, hahaha. Well, he’s got the Queen’s eye now!

Tyrion manages to get a mook to break his restraints so he can see what’s happening, too.

Jorah, the last standing, removes his helmet and stands before his queen, his Khaleesi, vibrating with love for her, but she is sickened by the very sight of him, demanding his removal. Panicked, he tells her he brought her a gift; Tyrion walks out just then and introduces himself. OHO SHE IS INTRIGUED.

It's wrong, I know, but I just want her to love him. Not like sexually. I'm saving that for me. TOO FAR? DID I MAKE IT WEIRD?

It’s wrong, I know, but I just want her to love him. Not like sexually. I’m saving that for me. TOO FAR? DID I MAKE IT WEIRD?

Cersei goes to visit Margaery, not looking so glamorous down in the dungeon. She’s so happy to see Margaery’s downfall, pretending to give a shit, but they both know she’s a liar. Margaery knows Tommen fell so easily in love with her because she’s warm and loving and has genuine concern beyond the tip of her nose, AHEM.

Cersei’s eye twitch is back, but she maintains her calm exterior, her benign smile, her barely controlled anger at everything in the world that would deny her being King. Er, Queen.

Speaking of peacocking, a funky bass line plays as she struts out of there singing

“Well you can tell by the way I use my walk,
I am Queen Mother, no time to talk.
Dissent loud and kinsmen warm,
I’ve been kicked around since I was born.
And now it’s all right, it’s OK,
Sparrows look the other way.
Do not try to understand
The Lannister curse on me, man!
Whether your my brother (which means that you’re my lover)
I’m still staying alive, staying alive.”

[needle scratch on the record]

After pretending to give a shit about the Tyrells to the High Sparrow, he asks her some pointed questions about the church, as in, the physical church. She stifles a yawn, motioning for him to continue. Well, he wants to knock down all the gold, chase out the money lenders, undo the power of the kings and leave nothing but simple truths. Cersei, you self righteous dodo, the hairs on the back of your neck should have risen at this.

But oh, she will choke on her own hubris, and he asks her, “What will we find when we strip away your finery?” LIES AND HATE AND SPIDERS. Okay, maybe not spiders.

Cersei at the end

Turns out a young man came to them, broken and sad, and had so much to say. About her. A door opens, she stands stock still as Lancel enters. As she tries to leave, a nun or whatever blocks her, grabs her and takes her away as she screams she is the Queen! (Are you? ARE YOU?)

And oh, how the might have fallen as she’s thrown into a cell of her own, her weak “Look at me! My face will be the last thing you see before you die,” echoes in the empty chamber as they shut the door on her. HA. HA HA HA!

Welp, we knew that was coming! And you know what? It was pretty damn satisfying. Now I’m ready for the people to overthrow the religious zealots because of their love for the kind Queen Margaery who fed them, spoke to them, made them feel seen and appreciated. HOW ABOUT IT, FLEA BOTTOM?

NEXT WEEK: Jon v the Wildlings! Cersei v lack of a blowout and nighttime moisturizer!

Reminder times infinity: I am NOT a book reader. I will not BE a book reader until the show is complete. PLEASE leave everything—little nitpicks and fill in the gap stuff—book related out of here, huh? You may think it’s an unimportant detail, but I’m left sobbing, betrayed and a shadow of who I once was. Help me continue to love doing this (I mean, I don’t get paid. I actually pay for the joy of loving this show with you. BE A BRO.) [forehead smooch]

Shoutout to Super Reader JCDavis for the incredibly thoughtful donation to keep the site running on the best servers I can find. So, so grateful to you! <3

COMMENTARY ON GILLY AND SAM REDACTED FOR THE TIME BEING. I’m mulling this one over. (I still don’t buy Gilly being romantically in Sam, however. Please don’t try to convince me, either. Talk amongst yourselves if you’d like, though!)

Please like & share:
  • Jason Edelman

    Hi Laura,

    I have read your reviews the last couple of years, thanks to first WiC and now WOTW sharing them, and as of last week I now follow you on Twitter, so first of all, hello…

    Just a couple of things to comment on, Egg or Aegon is not the Mad King, in the show he is Aemon’s nephew, in the books, he is his grand nephew.

    Aerys is Danny’s dad (AKA) The Mad King.

    The other thing is I have to disagree with you on the Gilly and Sam popping of his cherry.

    If you go back from the point of them escaping her nutso father, and the mutineers of the black watch, their relationship has evolved into the only romantic one in the entire show I think.

    Yeah they don’t consummate it, but that is only because of Sam’s vows, not for any lack of affection Gilly has for him.

    The Wall episode last year when she comes back and basically tells him to never leave her again, and they embrace, this is not a friendship zone thing, this is a love that can not be spoken of deal.

    Anyway, I wanted to comment last week as we disagree on Sansa, but then idiots came on here and you had your hands full, so I stayed silent, but you’re a good writer, and I just wanted to say I have a,ways enjoyed your fandom and love for the show in your own unique way.



    • chortles81

      While you’re correct about the Mad King as the most recent “wildfire king”, I’ve read that Aegon and Aemon were actually brothers (sons of Maekar I) and both were the younger brothers of Aerion “Brightflame”, the Targaryen who TV!Joffrey pointed out as “tried to drink wildfire so that he’d become a dragon.”

      • “I’ve read…”
        Can we please not have book talk/dissemination of book info here? Thank you very much, guys!

    • Ginevra

      The Aegon Targaryen who goes by Egg (there are loads of Aegon Targaryens) is Aemon’s younger brother, as Sam explains in the show. There is a wonderful Dunk and Egg series of short stories all about Ser Duncan the Tall and Aegon Targaryen, long before it was thought that Egg might become king. Mad King Aerys was Egg’s grandson.

  • Steph

    Loved the ep! My favorite of the season, I think. I couldn’t catch whatever it was that Sansa grabbed, but am interested to see how it comes into play. One thing I am wondering about, did Theon deliberately take the candle to Ramsay, or did he go to the tower initially with the intention of lighting it and Ramsay was just there and he caved?

    About the Sam/Gilly scene…aren’t they a couple? I don’t think there’s any Nice Guy bullshit going on there. I mean they did make out in the closet last year and IMO it was more to do with Sam’s vows that they hadn’t gotten it on yet, not because Gilly didn’t want it.

    Also, I have been loving the Jorah/Tyrion dynamic this season, and Jorah going all Maximus in the pit was awesome.

    • Lyanna Mormont

      The Broken Tower is, well, broken. The top room – where Bran caught Jaime and Cersei lo these many years ago – is basically a ruin. The room where Ramsay was looked lavish in comparison.

      How exactly did they catch the The North Remembers lady, though? Sansa didn’t tell Reek who she was, just that she had friends. Did they flay a little bit of skin off every servant who’d interacted with Sansa since she arrived in Winterfell? (Not that I’d put that beyond Ramsay.)

    • mrspidey80

      The thing Sansa grabbed was one of those hand drills that are used to drill holes into barrels (it was also lying on a barrel).
      Here’s hoping she drills a hole into Ramsay’s skull, sucks his brain out and then spits it in the crapper.
      (I’ve played way too much Mortal Kombat lately)

      • I thought it looked like a wine opener! :D


  • debijl

    When Jon hugged Sam goodbye, I got the sense they will never see each other again. I have no idea what WILL happen, but it clear Sam and Gilly need to get he hell out of dodge. I also concerns me on how Jon will move forward as Lord Commander, without the protection of Aemon.

    • I definitely think that’s what the show wanted us to think, too re: Sam and he! D:

    • Lyanna Mormont

      “And now his watch is ended.”

      RIP, Maester Aemon, who was once Prince Aemon Targaryen. No man was wiser or gentler.

  • Deceptively Calm Scientist

    *affects best Ren & Stimpy voice* No sir, I didn’t like it.
    I didn’t like anything about this episode. Well, I liked Dany’s cape. I want one of those for the next meeting of some committee (“And now a word from the Manager of Risk Analytics” *cape rustle*).
    Castle Black: no. Just no.
    Stannis: good man, but still no.
    Winterfell: fuck no.
    Dorne: despite breasts, no. I’m sorry, was that Tyene using her sexuality as a weapon or was it just an excuse for long, loving close-ups of her breasts? I get confused.
    King’s Landing: meh. Totally predictable so no.
    Meereen: *snore*

    This is an episode where every single story line seemed to offer more frustration, less progress. At the end of it all, a few pawns had advanced one space, woo-hoo.

    HOWEVER. Your recap made me smile, which requires considerable effort these days, and I can’t get “staying alive” out of my head now, dammit. Now I have to go listen obsessively to, I dunno, late-period Scritti Politti or something as antidote, and do you know what time it is, well DO YOU?

    • Lyanna Mormont

      Yeah, the boob close-ups were… very obvious in their gratuity. (It is gratuity, isn’t it? I typed gratuitiousness first, stared at it for a second, and erased it.) And she didn’t ask a very high price for “the only cure in the world,” did she? So what was the point of it all?

      • Deceptively Calm Scientist

        I have a horrible feeling that the writers thought it was “using female sexuality as a statement in a male-dominated world” and the director thought: “Yay! Breasts!”.
        Isn’t a gratuity a small monetary donation? I think the word you’re looking for is gratuitiousacity. Gratuitousness appears to be widely accepted but I like my suggestion better because testicles.

      • HeySwanSong

        We don’t fully know the point yet, I am thinking the Snakes may want to win Bronn to their cause. Even if they don’t, they may not want to be responsible for his death since they are already in trouble with their uncle.
        In any event, you can’t fully judge the full impact of the scene til you see how it plays out in the characters’ later interactions.

        • Deceptively Calm Scientist

          True, we won’t really know until the series finale in 2017 but for now, it looks out of the blue. If they want to keep Bronn alive a simple “Yo, the dagger was poisoned, here’s the antidote, sorry dude” would have sufficed.

  • barkusmollingmo

    Littlefinger is from the tiny house Baelish. They have a tiny castle in area called the Fingers on the coast of the Vale. His father had a bromance with Catelyn’s father during some war, and so he accepted to let Peter come and be fostered with the Tullys at Riverrun (This was pretty common. Ned and Robert were both fostered in the vale with Jon Arryn. Loras was fostered at Storms End, where he met Renly). That’s where everything started with him, Cat and Lysa. He got the nickname Littlefinger because to the Tully sisters he was the little boy from the Fingers.

    Fun fact: the sigil of house Baelish is actually a titan’s head. Littlefinger later makes his own sigil the mockingbird, probably to distance himself from his humble beginnings.

    • The dress was so gorgeous and regal! And juxtaposed with the filth of the fighting pits.. Lovely eye candy.

      I made the correction of crossing out my question about Baelish in the post, thanks!

  • AndyStreet

    So basically Aemon’s brother Aegon (‘Egg’) is the Mad King Aerys’s father, and Dany’s grandfather. Making Aemon her great-uncle or something.

    Also – Littlefinger is not a literal bastard, just a very minor lord, like the baron of three elderly peasants and some sheep. In the pecking order this probably amounts to pretty much the same thing as the bastard of a major lord like Ned Stark or Roose Bolton.

    I don’t think the scene with Sam and Gilly was particularly meant as the ‘socially inept nerd JUST LIKE YOU gets rewarded with sex from a hot woman’ trope. They have been building a genuine relationship under difficult circumstances; I also think it is easy to forget how young they both are, given the situations they have both found themselves in. It’s probably one of the more healthy relationships on the show at the moment.

    • Thank you for the info! I corrected the post to reflect that.

      And I’ve written above my thoughts on Sam/Gilly, so we’re most likely at an impasse in that regard, but fair enough. We see what we see as viewers.

  • caycos

    One thing about this week that I noticed was that it was really *dark*. No – literally dark. Lots of dark places – the Wall? Dark. Winterfell? Dark. Even Dorne! Dark.

    Maybe it’s that whole winter thing coming along..

    I keep thinking it’s a slow burn up to the end, but it is beginning to feel a bit too slow – I want something to *happen*. Tyrion and Jorah are the only ones who have really travelled, and they’re looking like they won’t be going anywhere else this season. Let’s hope the last 3 episodes bring the action.

    • “Maybe it’s that whole winter thing coming along…” Ha!! I think there’s something to that… ;)

      We’ve been pretty spoiled with some amazing action scenes and shocks in the past, and there haven’t really been many this season, so I get what you’re saying there. I feel like we’re all holding our breath.

      • Lyanna Mormont

        Stannis did say they’re not just the Stark Words. And Stannis knows things.

  • magnusk_98

    I’m still all “what the hell, show?” with Sansa, because she still is being kept as the permanent victim. Grmbl. I hope she stabs Ramsay in the eye next episode with that sharp stone she pocketed. Theon, too. Yes, still hate that weeny… oh, wait. That has-no-weeny.

    Cersei’s downfall was as sweet as expected. You could basically see the ghost of her dad double facepalming in the background (Jaime and Tyrion, too) when the High Sparrow was giving his big speech.

    And while I get the concern about Margaery being killed if you take the sept by force, WHY DID TOMMEN ALLOW IT IN THE FIRST PLACE TO HAPPEN? Argh. His Kingsguard were right there. This is one of the first times the show explicitly handed out an idiot ball so a plot point could happen.

    And phew, I really feared for a second that they would kill off future King Bronn (just wishful thinking ^^). Oh, well. He still has to kiss a Dornishmans wife. Or a Sand Snake, I guess.

    • hahaha, the ghost of her dad double face-palming. HEE.


      I was so worried they were going to kill Bronn, too!! Oooh, those cunning vipers! Well, one of them. ;)

    • Lyanna Mormont

      Tommen allowed it because a) his Kingsguard were outnumbered, and b) killing religious fanatics (because they dared to hold the highborn accountable for their sins) when the streets are full of more such fanatics is not a good idea, especially not when the crowd thinks of you as an abomination.

      At least that was my interpretation of the situation.

      • Deceptively Calm Scientist

        Kind of raises the question how you would solve the Faith Militant situation. The historical solution is to find them a nice foreign war. Plan B is to hope that the city guard has some kind of Seal Team Six to infiltrate Baelor’s Sept and murder the High Septon.

        • magnusk_98

          Nip it in the bud early enough and you can solve the problem in one city. If you allow it to spread outside of Kings Landing, expect a civil war.

          • Lyanna Mormont

            Do we know that it hasn’t already spread outside of King’s Landing? There’s a lot of the country we don’t get to see. The High Sparrow came from somewhere, I assume.

            • magnusk_98

              I’d probably think that it has, but so far we got no confirmation of that on the show.

      • magnusk_98

        The fanatics are just dudes with cudgels. I mean, Lancel Lannister is one of them.
        The Kingsguard is supposed to be the best fighters in the kingdom (even if many of them fall short of that in the lesser age the show portrays).

        And the words of the High Sparrow about the many against the few rang pretty hollow to me in this episode, given that the few control (via better food and decent pay) more people who have all the good weapons.

        And Tommen pretty much was at the point of ordering just the massacre you mentioned in this episode. If he had been as forceful when the original imprisonment of Margaery happened, it would have never gotten to this.

        I only hope that he nuts up now that Cersei is in the dungeons. I mean, the next best advisor he got should actually be Lady Olenna, right, his grandmother-by-marriage. Logically speaking he should go to her next for advice. She should give him some good ideas on what to do.

        Ah, I am probably too optimistic, it will probably be Littlefinger. Le sigh.

        • Deceptively Calm Scientist

          The Kingsguard is only 7 guys (and frankly, I’ve lost track who’s in it right now, apart from Jaime and Meryn Trant, both off-campus. The City Guard (once commanded by Janos Slynt) is probably what you need. and they have pointy objects, not cudgels, so I’m betting they’d make short work of the Forehead Tats.

          • Lyanna Mormont

            Unless the Forehead Tats are joined by the starving masses. Remember the riot in Season 2? I fear for Tommen if he tries it. (Gold will be their crowns and gold their shrouds…)

            • magnusk_98

              The masses aren’t actually starving anymore, given how the Tyrells are supplying food to the city (helpfully pointed out by Lady Olenna to Cersei last episode). So, yeah. The High Sparrow is counting on the religious fanaticism of the masses, which could be a factor, but I think it would be a bit too much to assume that they would storm the ramparts armed with cudgels against thousands of gold cloaks armed with real weapons.

          • magnusk_98

            Yeah, but there were at least two of the Kingsguard in the room when Margaery was taken to prison and maybe four or five untrained dudes with cudgels, so I think if Tommen had just said “Stop them!”, it wouldn’t have worked out so well for the Faith Militant. I wonder what Cersei would have done then.

  • LegendofKafei

    I always love your recaps Laura and had no problem with your reactions last week. I do think “neckbeard” has essentially become a sexist slur at this point though. I take offense when that term is used (and no, I don’t have a hairy neck).

    • Not even touching your first paragraph.

      And yes, the Nice Guy narrative is harmful in both directions, without question. Usually, when presented the other way, the girl chasing after the boy, she’s always seen as a pathetic bit of washrag. She’s the comic relief while our Hero patiently shuns her advances forever. So… it’s not quite the same, presentation-wise.

      But no means no means no, you’ll get no argument from me on that! Clear signals = awesome.

      Lena Headley’s long-simmering rage must be so exhausting to portray scene after scene. It was WONDERFUL to see the two of them interact. Jonathan Pryce has been a long-time favorite of mine, totally on board the give him an Emmy train.

  • Zack

    Why it was awesome:

    -Jonathan Pryce killing it in two scenes. I’ve been looking forward to that final scene for half a decade, and it was everything I hoped. Stupid shortsighted Cersei, rofl :D

    -and then he shows that he’s a match for the always Olenna Tyrell too.

    -Stannis telling Mel what she could do with her prophecy. Fistpump for dad of the year <3

    -Sansa being the MVP. Bringing Theon to his senses (however tragic the outcome was–and I think Theon was heading to the top of the tower to light the candle, and he didn't expect Ramsay. I don't think he planned to meet Ramsay there), and THEN. The cojones. "You're a bastard. You're totally lame." srsly. Sansa is the bravest and I want her on the Iron Throne at the end. IMO they're on a fine path for justifying the inclusion of last week's final scene. She's demonstrating that no matter what horrors she's forced to endure, she's got an iron will. She is totally a Stark.

    -that whole scene of Sam taking a beating for his special lady and Gilly showing her appreciation. The relationship has been the ultimate slow build and it resulted in the most genuine and tender lovemaking GoT has seen in eons. I am glad they let the scene fade-out mid-coitus instead of doing what every movie sex scene seems to do lately, two pumps and it's over. I think even Robb and Talisa had that scene. D'oh.

    I'm sorry you didn't love it the way I did. I really don't think these two have a relationship that anyone needs to be cynical about. They've kind of always been there for each other, giving a reason to feel…not alone, needed….in a violent, unpredictable world. That it goes to romance eventually might have felt cheap except they waited SO long to get to that point.

    -FINAL SCENE. Yes I mentioned it before but….good lord. Even knowing what was coming, I was still spellbound. And a bit giddy. Cersei: "Oh, I am sure whatever justice you mete out to the Tyrell siblings will be the most objective, fair and true justice imaginable. I trust you will be among the jury? *bats eyelashes*"

    Me: *mad cackling*

    • I’m so glad you enjoyed so much of this ep!! (I did, too.)

      If you go back and watch the Theon scene you’ll note that he clearly heads straight to Ramsay’s chambers, not the broken tower. :( Always Reek, never Theon. *cries about it*

      CERSEI, HOW COULD YOU BE SO SHORT SIGHTED?? But oh, Jonathan Pryce, as you said, is so magnificent, that I don’t want his undoing to be for a long, long time just so I can hear/see him. (And maybe have more Lady Olenna interactions, since they’re on the same level, snark wise.)

      I don’t know who I want on the Iron Throne more, Stannis or Sansa? MAYBE THEM MARRIED!?!? She can have a bear-skin style rug at her feel of Ramsay and Baelish, and Brienne can be her Queensguard. :D

      • magnusk_98

        Let’s just say that the portrayal of Cersei on the show has been much more subtle and has been making Cersei look much better prior to this season. So it’s no wonder that her short-sightedness this season is coming as a surprise to viewers who haven’t read the books. Hell, she still gets better off with the happenings of this season than how she behaved in the books.

      • Zack

        Hahaha! I see you’re as unconcerned with the fate of Selyse (Stannis’ evil wife) as I am! I can’t say I’ve ever seen a Stannsa shipping before, but it’s not a bad one. I love them both.

        And good on you for noticing that bit about Theon’s (I guess we still have to say Reek) intention. Honestly I like it better that Sansa will not be able to light a candle and wait. She’s already preparing to shiv Ramsay, discreetly snatching that weapon like she did.

        • Honestly, with that beard and “I love my child” thing Stannis has working, I ship him with ME. :D

          Selyse… Wow, she has lost any chance of redeeming herself in my eyes with her blatant hatred of her own daughter and fanatical religious zeal. PROTECT NEWT AT ALL COSTS!

          Was it just me, or did that weapon Sansa snatch look like a wine opener? THAT’S PROBABLY JUST ME. ;)

      • Lyanna Mormont

        I still can’t see Stannis making it through the series alive. Sansa, though. She’s the ultimate survivor. Sansa and Margaery sharing the throne, Lady Olenna as Hand of the Queens, Brienne as Lady Commander of the Queensguard. (“I’m no lady!” Sorry Brienne – Lord Commander, if you prefer it.) Sam can be Grand Maester. Arya and Jon can both be Queensguards, too. (Even Pod!) Davos will be Master of the Ships, of course. Shireen can be High Septon. (Or Grand Maester with Sam.) Dany can be Master of Laws, since she’s big on justice.

        • Deceptively Calm Scientist

          Guilty confession: I actually don’t like Dany all that much. It’s the entitlement. And Ig et where it’s coming from: being raised by her bugfuck super-entitled brother but still, it’s ugly. I’m actually okay with her not making it anywhere near the Iron Throne.

          • Lyanna Mormont

            You’ll notice she’s not one of my Queens.

            (I sympathize with the position she’s in, but… I can’t say I’m a big fan. I feel bad for her, but I don’t root for her to reclaim her place as Rightful Queen of a place she knows very little about and hasn’t been in since she was a baby.)

          • Zack

            I love to find more people lukewarm to Dany. It always feels like they want me to like her more than I do.

            I’m hopeful with Tyrion there that she can get her worse traits under control. If she ultimately returns to Westeros simply to fry all the ice zombies, but decides she would be an unfit ruler and that she would rather serve a Stannis, Jon, or Sansa reign….well, I would love Dany. That’s what it would take. I don’t know if she has it in her to give up ruling though.

          • Lisa

            She’s no more entitled than Stannis is though as his whole claim to being rightful heir is also entirely his last name.

            • Deceptively Calm Scientist

              Very fair point. In fact, the whole aristocratic lot of them are an unpleasantly entitled (pun intended) bunch.

      • Impi

        I am hoping that little lost Rickon somehow meets up with sweet little Shireen and together they rule. :)

    • Lyanna Mormont

      While I agree about Sansa being awesome in this episode, nothing justifies That Scene. She had that iron will long before then – see Joffrey – and the idea that being raped makes people stronger/smarter/better in any way is one I will never condone. They may, in time, be able to somewhat make up for that scene – but I will never consider it justified.

      • Zack

        I’m just not one of the people who can’t stand rape depictions in my media. I don’t like making excuses for rapists, victim blaming, etc…so when media tries that I’ll rage all day at them.

        But personally I would feel a bit hypocritical if I let all the beheadings and mutilations slide and then got all mad because of a rape depicted as no less cruel of an act.

        Rape is violating a body, a free will. So is mutilation, murder, yadda yadda. Either way you’re ruining somebody’s life without their consent.

        That’s just me, though. I know a lot of people think differently.

        • Lyanna Mormont

          I’m not 100% against all rape depictions in the media. It can be done well, and meaningfully. This wasn’t, IMO. It was an absurd, contrived plot – LF gains nothing from putting Sansa in that dangerous situation, Sansa’s motivations for agreeing are unclear and tend to make large parts of the audience think either that she’s stupid or that she’d “agreed” to what happened. It was portrayed as “inevitable” when in fact they could easily have had the wedding delayed until LF returned, or Ramsay be all nice at first to play mindgames with Sansa. It was used as a plot element to supposedly drive character development (as if being assaulted builds character) when that development could easily have been done in other, less gratuitious and predictable ways. And we were shown Theon’s pain at what happened, as if that somehow outweighed Sansa’s.

          Imagine if, for example, we’d had Ramsay act sweet and tender towards Sansa, while Myranda hovered in the background and Reek was going out of his mind waiting for the other shoe to drop. And then comes the reveal of the flayed servant. Twice the shock. Then, after that, Ramsay STILL acts lovey-dovey towards Sansa, and she has to play along because now she knows just what he’s capable of…

          There are SO MANY other ways they could’ve told the story without yet another rape.

          • Deceptively Calm Scientist


          • Zack

            Thanks for this post, and I have to admit, at least with your final paragraph, I’m in full agreement. I think with a couple of women in the writers room such well-planned scenarios as what you outlined would show up more often.

            But…Ramsay castrated Theon, flayed him, etc etc. It was never 100% about mind games, and if I was okay with it then I kind of have to be in this case too or it would be gender bias, wouldn’t it? Ramsay doesn’t discriminate with his pure evil, and to tiptoe around it would have felt weird I think. That’s ultimately why I was okay with what we got, because it felt true to their characters. Ramsay as a pure sadist and Sansa as a survivor. People wrongly call her a victim. She could have fought back, but doing so at the wrong moment would end with a dead Sansa.

            That said…if we HAD been given the situation you describe, I’d have been equally satisfied if not moreso, I have to think.

  • I added a comment on Sam and Gilly–my viewing of their relationship–to the main post. I’m gonna ask that we agree to disagree on it to save me from sad-facing all day. :)

    • Mike-L

      Laura – my argument against your point is here that their romantic involvement was cemented in Ep9 of last season (the battle for the wall). Sam mans up and tells pip to “open the fucking gate” and tells her that he’ll never leave her and Wee Morsel again. Then Gilly practically begs him to stay with her in the kitchen of cowardice. She names her baby after him and yes, despite her initial contempt for his lack of life skills (fire making, donkey punching etc) she gradually starts to realise (as most of the viewers do) that he’s probably one of the bravest characters in the show really.

      I haven’t seen their romance as one of Sam grinding her down with niceness until she basically has to pity-shag him. It’s been one of love Vs duty vs forbidden fruit. It’s been sams vows that has stopped this becoming a fully fledged relationship, otherwise I’d argue that they would have boned in the tunnel before they met Bran & co.

      Anyway – that’s my two penneth.

      • you are absolutely within your right to interpret that scene at the gate, etc., that way. I didn’t get that at all from any of them. [shrug]

        I think there are more people here who see it your way than mine, but I’m comfortable with my POV and letting you have yours.

        YOUR TWO PENNETHS (not to be confused with a penith) ARE NOTED. :D

  • One thing I never get in the show is how much time passes. Myrcella has grown up – she even says she’s been in Dorne for years, but that lil Sam is still little?
    It also doesn’t help that the season isn’t changing to denote the passage of time – winter is STILL coming, and we have no idea how many months or years have gone by

    • Yeah, the passage of time is one of the hardest things to deduce on this show. Everyone ages except for little Sam. Traveling by boat takes as much time as the plot demands and Winter is (still) coming. Though it seems that it finally arrives with all the snow south of the Wall (and at the Eyrie last season).

      • Speaking of travelling by boat, where is Gendry? Which continent has he reached by now?

    • Lyanna Mormont

      I’m going to assume Myrcella was using some classic teenage hyperbole. “I’ve been grounded for YEARS!” It’s the only way anything makes any sense.

      • That or the show writers have screwed up the timeline. Because when Myrcella left she was around 12-13, right? And now she LOOKS 16ish, which makes it around 2-4 years since she’s been gone. Even at the minimum of 2 years, that little Sam should have grown up a little now!

    • HeySwanSong

      Its tricky to make it work, but I think Myrcella being shipped off to Dorne coincides with Gilly first becoming pregnant. That would mean in the current timeline, Sam Jr. is about a year old and Mrycella has been with the Martells for almost 2 years. The complicating factor is that Cersei’s remaining children have had their age’s retconned to be about 2 years older as well.

  • Mike-L

    LOVE LOVE LOVE your reviews, best out there in my opinion – but as pointed out, the mad king is Aerys – not Aegon. I know you write from an unsullied perspective, which is cool as a dornish cucumber – but if you do decide to further your reading you could always delve into GRRMs novella series “The Tales of Dunk & Egg” set around 100 years before the story in Game of Thrones. It’ll make your heart twinge. The graphic novels are fantastic and it wont spoil a thing in your GoT viewing – only enrich it.

    Maester Aemon was Aegon V’s brother – he was offered the throne before him but turned it down, he was even offered the chance of being released from his vows by the high septon. We shall never see his like again.

    • OOOOOOOH, THIS IS SOMETHING I CAN GET BEHIND!! They’re not spoilery AND they’re entertaining? GET OUT OF TOWN! (And take me with you! I could use a vacation…) Thanks SO SO much for that tip!! <3 <3

      I remember learning that about Aemon, him turning the throne down, and it was so sad to lose such a gentle, thoughtful person. The Wall is worse because of it, and his missing presence will be keenly felt, I suspect.

      (And ha, you're very sweet to butter me up! I'm certainly not getting that opinion from most, which is absolutely their right. THANK YOU.)

      • Zack

        If you’re planning to read those, later this year they’re releasing a compilation book of the first few novellas, either 3 or 4 total. At this point, the individual releases are a little hard to find. Highly recommend them though!

        • I AM EXCITE! Thanks, guys! (Especially the extra tidbit about the compilation. I’m packing up a house right now, and I have Too Many Books (tooooo many booooooks!) :D

  • Best episode of the season so far:

    At least they are following it through with the (stupid, stupid) Sansa rape scene. I would hate that scene even more if they were showing no repercussions of it (like they did with Dany/Drogo in season 1) and that’s all I’ll say about that storyline.

    Mel, I you hurt Shireen then I don’t know what I’ll do. Being flayed alive by Ramsay and being ed to a dragon would be too kind.

    The visual difference between the places where you lock up a Lannister compared to the places where you lock everyone else up (including your own nieces) is brilliant. I’m glad that Bronn lives for now and I’m glad we finally got some characterization for Tyene (and some great eye-rolling by her sisters).

    Jorah was great. Some others have pointed out that he wasn’t going for killing blows instead he was just knocking the gladiators out. Nice work, considering how grossed out Dany was by the violence. I also want such an awesome gift (even if can’t pay the wine).

    I only had one problem with the episode and that was the Sam/Gilly sex scene. My problem lies not with the scene itself which could’ve been one of the best consensual/non brothel (it’s a shame one has to point that out) but with the narrative implications of the Nice Guy trope. Without the attempted rape beforehand I would have cheered for both of them but now? Does it make me a bad person that I had more problems with this than with the rape (at least from a narrative perspective).

    • I want to fall upon your neck weeping in gratitude for this comment, but I don’t want to make it weird. DID I MAKE IT WEIRD? ;D

      Pretty much agree with everything you’ve said here, (obv) and love the comment in particular about the Lannisters in lock up, and how VASTLY DIFFERENT all three situations are physically and visually.

      LONG LIVE BRONN and shit, I just doomed him, didn’t I? I TAKE IT BACK.

      • I had a feeling that Bronn is doomed for the whole season but now I think that he is save (for now). Surely, they don’t save his live now to kill him two episodes later.

        This season has been weird because they haven’t killed a single member of the main cast (from the opening credits) yet.

    • magnusk_98

      They definitely have been playing the relationship much more circumspect than in the books. I’m really with Laura here, in the way that I am not feeling the connection, as portrayed by the show.
      Then again, maybe I am thinking too much in terms of normal romance about those two, when relationships of convenience were much more of a thing in the comparable time period.

  • JP

    Cutting out all of the book context, Aegon V was the Mad King’s father in the show.

    I think we all have a blindspot when it comes to Nice Guys in fiction, depending on how much we like the character. I happen to think Jorah is the Niceyest Nice Guy that ever Niced, but we all have our own investments. I just want some people to be happy, Laura, and if it has to be Gilly and Sam taking a moment or building on something…I’ll take it. Mostly because I like the two of them.

    • Oh man, Jorah is the ULTIMATE NICE GUY, you are completely right! In the past when I’ve talked about that here, I’ve mentioned over and over that the actor’s voice is what has me rooting for him, then it blossomed into a runaway joke about his voice impregnating any fertile creature within speaking distance. BUT YES. ULTIMATE nice guy, you are spot on.

      And heee, I love that you want people to be happy!! I want Gilly and Sam to be happy, too. I want the show to have convinced me that Gilly had actual tender feelings of luuuurve for him, and it didn’t. But we all see what we see, and often they won’t match up. I love it when we all can talk about these things without name calling. <3 (ignores growing number of unapproved troll comments)

      This episode definitely had me in a FAR BETTER MOOD than the week before, too.

      • Zack

        One thing I like about this place in particular is the respect everybody seems to have for dissenting opinions.

        Like…as far as I’m concerned, it’s less important to persuade somebody to take my POV as gospel than it is to explain why I may feel differently. If we can be all “I don’t agree with that outlook, but I can understand why you do” then that’s a successful conversation IMO. And that’s pretty much how you run things, Laura. Much appreciated :)

        • That’s it precisely, and it’s all on account of the fine quality of people who come week after week here, truly. <3

          I clearly have my own thoughts, but whether or not I want to carry them out in comments, I feel confident that the group here knows to keep it intelligent and thoughtful, which is so freaking awesome.

          I appreciate YOU! :)

      • Lyanna Mormont

        Jorah IS the ultimate Nice Guy, which is why I’ve never liked him. (Whatever magic the voice holds for you, I appear to be immune to it.) Sam, on the other hand, has never asked Gilly for anything, even by implication. Well, except when he wanted to give her his mother’s thimble, or whatever it was. Everything that’s ever happened between them has been initiated by Gilly.

        • Deceptively Calm Scientist

          Well, apart from the slaving business and spying for Varys…

          • Lyanna Mormont

            Well, yeah, those little details, too…

        • Zack


          That's my view on Sam/Gilly too. Jorah is just a creep. Sam is clearly attracted to a pretty girl, but he's also doing everything in his power to not make Gilly uncomfortable with unwanted advances. He's put the ball entirely in her court.

          She's the one that took the three point shot for the win at the buzzer :)

          • OMG, lol times infinity for the three point shot joke. :D

      • Tim Ward

        “I’ve mentioned over and over that the actor’s voice is what has me rooting for him”

        Speaking of which, have you managed to see the History and Lore videos from the Blu-rays and available on Youtube? They are excellently produced, written and narrated and Mr. Iain Glenn provides his VA madskillz to four of them.

        • So you’re saying I need to schedule an evening of quiet seduction with Mr. Iain Glenn and Youtube?

          …that sounds way dirtier than I meant, lol.

  • Haven’t read the whole review and all the comments yet, but I did want to comment on the Aegon/Mad King thing. Aerys was the “Mad King” who was Dany’s dad, and Jon’s granddad if R+L= J is true. I believe in the show-verse, Aegon was Aerys’s dad. Which makes Maester Aemon Aegon/Egg, brother and Aerys’s uncle. I think.

    • Thanks for that! (Hit F-5, I’ve made amendments to the original post after several of you guys pointed me in the right direction!)

  • PaulB

    Thanks as always for a great recap.
    Your take on Sam and Gilly is very interesting. I always thought they had a romance brewing. How much of that is because I’ve read the books and maybe they set things up differently, and how much of it is what I brought to the viewing I can’t say. But your take on it has made me rethink my perspective.
    I think when Jorah fought off everyone, he was specifically trying to not kill them because he knew that’s what Dany would want. But I could be being idealistic.
    Love your book so far. After I read the third paragraph, I showed it to my wife and said “I think I’m going to like this book.”

    • Paul, I appreciate so much you not coming at me with pitchforks, ha! I know I’m drawing a line in the sand for a lot of people, and I’m going to deal with the fallout for it, but it’s a concept that I’m incredibly passionate about, and that’s off-putting for some, I know. So thanks.

      “How much of that is because I’ve read the books and maybe they set things up differently, and how much of it is what I brought to the viewing I can’t say.” You’ve articulated eloquently what I didn’t in my hamfisted Hulkout, and to be fair, the second part of that could be attributed to me, too.

      I read someone else talking about Jorah not killing the others, but knocking them out, and that’s probably right. Leading up to that was nothing but a slaughter-fest, so my brain may have just carried those actions over. And you’re absolutely right: Dany wouldn’t want the deaths, she’s clearly still against the whole concept.

      (Aww, thank you so much! I hope you don’t mind tender gay romance! Ha.)

      • Mike-L

        Jorah was very methodical in making sure he wasn’t killing anyone – I pointed it out to my wife as we were watching. He just knew that Dany must have reluctantly opened the pits, it was a very conscious decision, and a dangerous one. I don’t know, I think he expected it would go some way to winning her over again. Not sure if it’ll work, I expect Dany will still make an example of him.

      • PaulB

        I wouldn’t call your stance hamfisted. I think it’s reasonable, and you point out some reasons why they’re not a couple. We all bring our own prism of experiences to art, which is one of the reasons why it can be wonderful. Two people look at the exact same thing and have divergent interpretations. The trick is to recognize those differences are an opportunity for growth and understanding and not just argument.

        To me, the much bigger issue about that scene is that they felt the need to throw even more threats of sexual violence, and that Sam trying to be the tough guy was what spurred her to sleep with him. If they wanted them to get together, would it have been so bad for her to reach out to him (heyo!) because she recognized he was distraught over his mentor’s death (On the other hand, maybe that would have troubling implications too).

        Wait, your book is a gay story? The whole time I’ve been reading it as “Olivia Andrews.” This changes everything. :)

        • “We all bring our own prism of experiences to art, which is one of the reasons why it can be wonderful.” If your wife hasn’t told you how wonderful you are lately, allow me. (In a respectful way, of course!) :D

          And yes, if Gilly had feelings for Sam that were clearly evident, it would have been LOVELY to have seen a calm, lovely moment where she reached out. She had the opportunity leading up to this,a after all. (I know the argument is he was a member of the Watch with a Vow, but it’s a little meaningless to her as a Wildling, imo.)

          But still, points for a non-rapey sex scene, lol.

          And hahaha, PAUL, I ALMOST HAD A HEART ATTACK. I’ll say this: the general school of thought for women who write about men is that it’s a great way for dudes to learn what turns ladies on (as well as any G-B leaning fellas.) :D

  • Lyanna Mormont

    This is a difficult episode to comment on, it was so scattered all over the place. No clear theme, no long stays in the same location, not a lot of Big Scenes.

    Female sexuality is as close to a theme as we get, I think. Dany with Daario, making it clear her marriage to Hizdahr will be in name only and who she sleeps with is none of his business. Gilly’s near-rape at the Wall, and then she chooses for herself. (Note: Sam has never even suggested or hinted that he wants sex from her. Not once. IMO that’s what makes him Not-A-Nice-Guy; although I suppose having read the books colors everything in ways I may not be aware of.) Sansa at Winterfell. Melisande trying to manipulate Stannis with her body. Myrcella in Dorne, insisting she’s in love and will marry Trystane whether her family approves or not. Tyene… well. And in King’s Landing, Margaery and Cersei are both paying for their sexuality. (Well, that’s why Cersei plotted against Marg, even if it’s not what she’s technically been accused of.) I’m not sure how I feel about this theme, coming after the way last episode ended. Is it supposed to offer a balance, or are they just barrelling on?

    One thing is clear, and it’s that Reek isn’t going to come in and heroically save Sansa. Theon might be willing to try, but first Sansa would have to drag him out of Reek kicking and screaming. (Which means she’d essentaially be saving herself.) Brienne isn’t going to get the sign to come rescue Lady Sansa, either. Stannis is stuck in the snow. Our girl is on her own.

    Oh, her face when Ramsay mentioned Jon! If he’d realized what that would mean to her, he’d never have said a word. Not that Jon can help her – he’s heading in the opposite direction – but it gives her strength to remember that she’s NOT the only Stark kid left. (Even if R+L=J is true, Jon will still always be Ned Stark’s son.) But Ramsay assumed that because she was calling him a bastard, she must despise her bastard brother, too. No, Ramsay. It’s not the fact that you were born illegitimate she hates you for.

    (Sansa’s got a gun… I mean knife. Or whatever that was, I couldn’t see.)

    Yes, Gillyflower, go south. Take Sam with you; he can go to Oldtown and be a Maester like he used to want to. The two of you are short on allies at Castle Black – even Edd went with Jon and Tormund.

    Stannis will NOT sacrifice Shireen. He’d burn YOU before he’d do that, Melisandre. (But what might Mel do behind his back? She scares me. Another religious fanatic.) She’s seen herself walk the walls of Winterfell, huh? Innnn-trusting.

    Why isn’t Dorne as good as I want it to be? Despite The Dornishman’s Wife, despite the potential of the San Snakes, despite the awkward Lannister reunion, all we get is gratuitious boobies and a teenage tantrum. (No, Myrcella, Cersei didn’t send you away – that was all Tyrion’s idea, and Cersei swore to make him pay for it. And it can’t have been “years” if we go by the aging of Little Sam. But I guess exaggeration is the teen way.) Best moment of the Dorne scenes was Jaime realizing he really doesn’t know Myrcella anymore – she grew up and he wasn’t there. Well, that and the “more hair” / “more hands” exchange.

    Cersei. Oh, Cersei. You really didn’t see this coming? Faith Militant, same laws apply to the high and the low, sexual sins must be punished, a queen thrown in jail, Lancel telling you about the need to be cleansed of your sins… and you never once put all that together to come up with Oh Shit? Not until you were already trapped. Who’s going to take care of Tommen now?

    Lady Olenna and the High Sparrow; Lady Olenna and Littlefinger; Cersei and the High Sparrow. Tangled webs indeed. But why did LF need to “give” Lancel to Lady Olenna, when he was already with the Faith? How did that give Olenna anything to use against Cersei and/or offer the High Sparrow? Anything that the HS wouldn’t already have, that is. Had Lancel really not told him about Robert and the wine, or the Dowager Queen getting a little something on the side, or whichever “sin” it was Cersei was arrested for?

    • magnusk_98

      I suppose Olenna went to the High Sparrow with her information, so that he could pressure Lancel into confessing. Maybe she even got some leniency for Margaery and Loras out of it, we’ll probably know by next episode.
      BTW, this is rapidly approaching a point where we are surpassing the last published book. I think the last episode may very well be all original material, so color me EXCITED. :D

    • Zack

      Your comment on Mel acting against Stannis’ wishes in regards to Shireen is exactly what I thought. I don’t trust that red woman. I am on pins and needles now not only for Stannis’ life but Shireen’s as well :(

      • magnusk_98

        Maybe I misinterpreted the look she gave Stannis when he denied her Shireen, but to me it said “Oh shit, it didn’t work?” It seemed a genuine moment where she lost control over her façade of imperturbability.
        Of course, now I fear that she will go to Lady Selyse and go over Stannis’ head, burning Shireen before he can prevent it. That would just be what the show likes to do. :-/

    • Deceptively Calm Scientist

      That’s one area where the show’s plotting is kind of stupid: Cersei would have to be felony dim not to see the Lancel doublecross coming. I mean, seriously, there is NO way she could not see that coming. He practically warned her!

  • Jay

    “patiently waiting her out until she gives up and gives in is No Bueno.”

    I’ve never seen that in Sam.

    • Okay. That was in specific reference to the trope of Nice Guy, but fair enough.

  • Lisa

    I was bothered that Gilly went to sex almost immediately after a scene of nearly being raped, but I don’t think Sam ‘nice guy’ routines her. He seems to have long had a crush on her but given his vows and everything, I never had the feel that he actually expected anything out of it. He was being nice to her because. A). He’s nice. B) he likes her.

    God, poor Sansa and poor Margaery (and I assume poor Loras).

    And I very happy that Bronn didn’t die.

    • You know what, Lisa? That may be what has my back up, actually. That right after almost being gang-raped she went there with Sam. That might be adding to my “well THAT was out of the blue” feelings.


      See, this is what I love about our forums, we can talk things out in a thoughtful way. LOOK, MA, I’M THINKING! ;D

      • Zack

        Now, this is something I can get behind. That pacing. Almost-rape to lovey-dovey sexytime. Weird. I wonder if you’d have reacted more favorably to that hook-up under more normal (well, for GoT) circumstances.

        Ag I post too much. Last one :)

        • See, if only those trolls who called me a man hating feminazi had just stuck around, maybe they would have been happy with this turnout! ;)

          AND THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS POSTING TOO MUCH. I highly encourage talking with the group here!

      • Lisa

        Yeah the context was weird. It’s hard to imagine a woman going from nearly being raped to sleeping with a guy as logical, romantic progression. But that’s weird writing (and its show writing as Sam/Gilly happens differently in the book and like someone above wrote this may well lead me to different base assumptions for the way I saw things). It was a strange context and the way it happened on the show bothered me.

        That said I don’t think that Sam was running nice guy in that I don’t think he was expecting to be rewarded. Remember this is the guy who Dad threatened to kill him because he was so worthless. I don’t know that Sam thinks he can earn someone’s love through persistence. He never earned his family’s love. I think he just has a thing for Gilly and was shocked that she might see him in a sexual way at all. I don’t think he thought he could wear her down. I think his motives with her have been admiration of her. i don’t think either of them are playing any games. They’re just trying to make their way

        That said, whose brain fart idea was it to have her nearly raped and then decide to have sex? The way the show wrote it did make a sex as reward interpretation not only work but uncomfortably plausible even from a book reader perspective where it didn’t happen that way and is pretty clear that it’s a genuine reciprocated thing.

        • “I don’t know that Sam thinks he can earn someone’s love through persistence.” I agree with this! And you know, I wasn’t very clear in my original rage-hulksmash about the Nice Guy trope. I really really REALLY like Sam. Really-really.

          My concern is that many viewers will take away from the (poorly executed, imo if this was the intent) slow burn between he and Gilly that if you just stick it out and white knight them enough times, you’ll be rewarded with sex. That’s a story that is ALL OVER HOLLYWOOD, in books, etc etc. I get those vibes from that scene, but other people don’t. Which is fine.

          I just don’t want people to assume this means I’m rage-quitting the show or hate Sam, because no.

          But I never once saw Gilly as being attracted to Sam, which is why I reared back when she climbed atop him. *shrug*

          • Zack

            I don’t know….she’s clearly got feelings for him. I keep thinking back to the battle on the wall, they’re huddled down there and he’s talking about his duty and has to leave her, and she’s freaking out. I dunno. I feel like there have been long-simmering FEELINGS from Gilly to Sam just based on the fact that he always does what he can to keep her safe, and her baby safe. A sexual, lusty thing? Yeah, that’s not there. But that’s why it was so sweet when she sexed him IMO. She probably wouldn’t have been attracted to him physically, but she adores his personality….I dunno. That’s my reading of it. I always felt like this was one of the aspects from the books carried over most faithfully, too. I loved them in print and I love them on screen. I was never a Jon/Ygritte dude. Sam/Gilly all the way.

            But, as said before, I do feel like the timing in the episode was not ideal for establishing that bond. I guess the idea was to show that she loves him for getting his ass beat rather than let her be raped…which is fine, if that’s the moment that finally makes her decide on her feelings. But it was odd to go directly between those scenes. I’d have liked a few calmer moments after that violent scene where they’re just talking.

          • Raja

            I can sort of see both sides of the argument here. I like both the actors who play Sam and Gilly, and whilst I think they have very good chemistry on screen, it’s just not what I would call ‘romantic chemistry’ ( I know that’s a clunky way to put it, but I’m terrible with words).

            If I were to give an example, I’d say Harry and Ginny in the Harry Potter films have the same sort of asexual relationship on screen.

            All that being said, after Sam and Gilly made out last season in the episode with the battle for the wall, what happened this episode didn’t really come as a surprise to me at all. And that’s also why I don’t really buy into the nice guy narrative in this case. There’s clearly something there, and the show has showed us enough until this point to ‘earn’ that scene between Sam and Gilly in this episode.

    • Becky Diane

      Lisa, I agree 100%. My husband and I had almost the same conversation while watching. He said something about them having sex and I responded, “I’m pretty sure the last thing on someone’s mind when they almost just got raped is sex….or not, I guess.”

  • This is one of those weeks that I feel like all of my thoughts regarding the episode have been more artfully articulated by other commenters. So I’m not gonna rehash the goods and the bads in the episode. I’ll just point out that I’m glad there wasn’t a total gloss-over on THAT SCENE from last week and that Sansa has more spine half the true knights in Westeros (if there were any).

    It seemed like much of this episode was about peril. Those who are in it, trying to get out of it, or don’t even understand how deep they are.

    And watch out for those true-believers. The ones you can’t negotiate with or cajole. There aren’t many of them in Westeros/Essos. But there are a few. The High Sparrow and the ONE TRUE KING Stannis come immediately to mind (though at differing degrees).

    Great recap. Worth the pice of admission just for the #shit gif.

    • Ha, Christopher, I’m having the SAME FEELING about more thoughtful comments. I’m just hulk smashing all over the place.

      The things that made you glad made me glad. And seriously: Stannis BARATHEON.

      …shoot, knowing my track record, as soon as I devote myself to him he is going to DIE HORRIBLY so I TAKE IT BACK. BOO! HISS! Long live Roose Bolton! :D

      (And I’m glad the recap had things to make you laugh! I REALLY TRIED.)

  • Arkash

    Hey, I didnt really understand what you truly mean when you say you didnt like the Sam / Gilly sex scene ?
    I for one found it beautiful and delicate. These are finally two people making real love, with no prostitution / rape / manipulation. And I think both of them needed it.

    • Arkash

      Oh, okay, I just saw your added paragraph there… well, let’s agree to disagree, but from my perspective (and personal reasons), it was one of the most emotional moment of the entire series.

    • Hi! Well, I’ll agree it was nice to have a sex scene that had no rape, no prostitution, no coercion behind it. YES!

      But for me, I haven’t seen Gilly as being attracted to Sam? I haven’t read any of their scenes together with her visualizing him as anything other than a friend or a brother-type. It’s been very asexual to my mind. So my reading was her “gifiting” him with her body after he saved her from a horrific assault. It felt out of the blue to me, seeing as she’d never made physical overtures to him in the past.

      And I’m fully aware that I’m in the minority here, and welcome you guys to talk about it. But I’ve read it in the way I described above. [shrug]

      • Arkash

        Thanks a lot for taking the time to reply ! :)
        I personally think that Gilly feels something for Sam, if only because he’s been the kindest man to her of her entire life, but even when I try to strip the moment of any romance, I still somehow feel that from a purely physical perspective, it was something Gilly needed. Some real tenderness and in a way, discovering her own body and opening herself to her sexuality.
        Oh, and just because it’s the first time I chance to say that to you : I simply ADORE your recaps ! They are an absolute delight to read every week !

        • Of course! I’m glad you came here to start a conversation! :D

          The tour of the internet I’ve done today has shown that I’m DEFINITELY in the minority as far as my opinion on Sam and Gilly are concerned.

          I can say, however, that I agree completely that Sam is the gentlest, kindest, nicest person in all of Gilly’s existence, and if ever there were two people who deserved Nice Things, it’s those two. (I’m just not convinced that sexy times were warranted between them. <– just my personal opinion, which I know is HEAVILY out numbered)

          And thank you so much for the compliment, I truly appreciate it! I have to give a lot of credit to the folks who come over here and talk–I have astoundingly considerate, fun readers who have lively and respectful conversations. Some that I learn a few things from, in fact!


      • HeySwanSong

        I think you also have to take into account the person Gilly is due to her (highly unusual, to say the least) upbringing. What is a “brother-type” to her exactly? The only man she has ever known for most of her life up to this point was her cultleader father-husband.

        • which is why I don’t think she saw Sam as anyone sexual.

          • HeySwanSong

            That doesn’t follow for me. Her previous relationship with a male familial figure was sexual in nature. Sam has stepped in as her protector (such that he can be) and the de facto father to her child. It is no stretch that she would have romantic feelings for him.

            • Welp, it’s a stretch for me. We’re at loggerheads here, dude. You can keep thinking what you think, and Imma keep on with mine. There’s plenty of room for different opinions.

              • HeySwanSong

                Ok we can agree to disagree. Or, we could call in 7 septons for a trial and let the gods decide who’s right…

  • Lee No

    A few thoughts on tonight’s episode. Phew, I did fear for Bronn for a second there. On the other hand, Tyene may poison me anytime. Anyway yay, Westeros’ most Rock n’Roll knight lives!

    And I’ve thought a lot about Dany’s efforts in Meereen lately. I’ve studied perception of otherness and difference quite a bit (granted, mainly in Antiquity, but it’s totally appicable!) and it’s astounding how Dany could so well dismantle her feeling of otherness and alienation when it came to the Dothraki (okay, she did have Drogo there as motivation and teacher) but seems to have forgotten how to do that with the Meereenese – she basically reduces their culture to slavery and what she sees as barbaric customs, no wonder she cannot win their hearts as a queen – she is as other to them, both former slaves and masters, as they are to her. Dany who ate a whole horse heart to prove she is willing to adapt and respect traditions in order to gain standing in an alien society should know that the whole colonialist thing (we must educate these savages who practice slavery for their own good) she’s got going now cannot work in the long (or even short) term.
    Wow, wall of text, sorry you had to read all that ;)

    Lastly, I agree with featured commentor Zack: Muhuhahaha Cersei, you have so brought this on yourself.

    • (OMG, thank you for talking to me about the rest of the episode, WHICH I REALLY ENJOYED!!)

      I was wringing my hands, worried Bronn wasn’t going to come through. But then if he had to die, at least there was a beautiful naked woman smiling nearby. That’s close to his vision for himself. :D

      Re: Dany, she definitely is spinning her wheels in the mud. And the worst of it is: I don’t caaaaaaare. Dany was Mother of Dragons KHALEESI. And now I’m like eh, your dress is beautiful? And it’s for the reasons you’ve put together. Colonialism, elitism, classism, (racism). SNAP OUT OF IT, DAENERYS. Hopefully Tyrion’s arrival will shake that up some. Plus, she REALLY needs a Varys.

      (Always have a wall of text! Conversation is A+++ here!)

  • Deceptively Calm Scientist

    I just realized I don’t like the Queen of Thorns one bit. Sure she’s witty but so was Lavrenti Beria so that doesn’t count for much. And she’s such a smug, entitled piece of Upper Class shit. I know we’re all supposed to coo “Oh Lady Olenna, you’re such a CARD” but there’s real ugliness behind the bon mots. Littlefinger in a dress.

  • Adam Bodestyne

    “Egg.. I dreamed that I was old.”

    Such a sad line.

    Not much else to say today, but I still appreciate your keeping on with these recaps. I haven’t commented much for a while since I’m a book reader, and don’t feel I can trust myself not to accidentally let something slip, but as the series gets closer to diverging or overtaking, maybe that’ll change.

    • So, so sad. And he looked younger in that moment, too! A trick of the light? Or a face finally free of pain? *cries*

      And let me hug you for nine years for worrying about spoiling me! That’s so thoughtful of you, even though it means we’re doing without your voice in the comments.

      As for still recapping, I’m a “til the bitter end” type of person unless the show commits the ultimate sin: boring me. (I don’t think that will be possible…) :)

      I hope we see you back here, too!

  • smithofbexar

    re: the recommended post

    theon was not going to light the candle. the candle was meant to be lit in the broken tower, whereas theon goes to see ramsay in the keep, which is furnished and sealed and simply NOT broken.

    secondly, and i know i’m splitting hairs here, but it’s something i’ve seen done multiple times, the queen of thorns is NOT a tyrell, she is olenna redwyne, and when she married margaery’s grandfather she became the lady of highgarden but this does not nor ever did make her a tyrell. she is from the arbor and is of that island’s ruling family.

    • Yeah, I don’t know how people didn’t see that Theon went straight to Ramsay, either.

      (But please: don’t split hairs about book details here. I only know things from the show, and if you guys start in on stuff from the book, I’ll inevitably be spoiled by something, and then I’ll be sad, and then I’ll eat my feelings, and then I’ll break out in zits and have to wrap my face in scarves, and I live in Texas, which means I’ll overheat and die, and do you want that on your conscience? Ha. Thanks for understanding!)

      • smithofbexar


        duly noted, muchacha. in the show she lady olenna does mention being from the arbor, marrying into the tyrells (having seduced margaery’s grandfather to avoid having to marry a listless, inept targaryan prince) and even derides the tyrell words of ‘growing strong’. so it is still admittedly splitting hairs, but not only using book details.

        sending you sunshine and sweetness from san antonio.

  • Julie Martin

    Laura, I am a lurker of epic proportions and never thought I’d dip my oar into the comments river, but now I feel must! I hope you know how much your readers love what you have created. I am a book reader first and foremost, and absolutely love seeing the show from your witty Unsullied perspective. I used to giggle snort at your recaps on my commute to work, generating suspicious looks from my fellow public transportation peoples. Now that I am no longer commuting, I read your delightful recaps from home, and am treated to the suspicious looks of my drag….er….cats!

    At any rate, you are not alone in your intepretation of various SCENES and character development. As much as I want to foist my book reader perspective on so many situations, I realize that no- that is not the context created by the show’s writers, or if it is what they were trying to go for, they didn’t persuade all of us. So I am with you on Sam and Gilly. As presented by the show, I just don’t totally buy it. It felt awkward, all the more so due to yet another !Rape Threat Level Midnight! situation being added to the mix. What I am trying to say is, yooouuuu are nooottt alllooonneee.

    On to other things. First, lots of scratchy things landed in my eyes during Maester Aemon’s scenes. Great character, and really great actor bringing him to life all these years. It was nice so see someone who brought wisdom without devious scheming. Maybe one day our dear Sam will fully take on that role. Assuming he doesn’t die some horrible death.

    I would love, love, love to see a Melissandre/High Sparrow showdown. I know conflicts between religious fanatics tend not to end well… but I can’t help but be curious! And thus was all of Westeros flattened….On a related note, I do love the whole “many no longer fearing the few” line. Interested to see if we will delve more into the consequences the wars have created for the masses, and what that may mean for the ruling classes of Westeros. Dany is dealing with this as well. Nobody seems to be dealing with it particularly well.

    Tyrion meeting Dany, FINALLY? Yes, please. Give me more of this. She could use his advice (but will she take it? Or will everyone just die of greyscale, THANKS, Jorah).

    It felt good to see Cersei get thrown in a dungeon. Right up until the point when my fiance told me I was reveling in Slut Shaming. At which point I had more wine and contemplated feelings of hypocrisy.

    • First, let me say how GLAD I am that you delurked! :D (And cats are totally furry dragons. YOU ARE 1000% CORRECT, which is mathematically impossible, AND YET STILL TRUE.)

      And while I am totally on board with the idea of everyone knowing their opinions are theirs to have, and I don’t feel like I have to convert everyone to the Thinking of Laura, I have been incredibly grateful to hear from other folks that they also Saw What Laura Saw, even though most people are saying I’m completely off my rocker (and that’s the nice ones!).

      OH, MAESTER AEMON… I, too, had a tree or branch fall into my eye, making them water. :( I love the idea of Sam growing in his studies, LIVING A LONG LIFE, and being a Maester Aemon for a young kid at the Wall, too. <3 (sings: the CIIIIIIIIRCLE of LIIIIIIFE!)

      Give me all the religious showdowns! I want the victor to stand on the fallen leader's body, spit down and say, "WHERE IS YOUR PUKE GOD NOW?" only to be smoten with a great smiting.

      I still maintain that Margaery has the love of the people of KL, so she'll fare better than most in this whole dungeon thing.

      • Julie Martin

        :-) Well you know what they say about opinions. ButI just wanted to make clear that you are not insane, because if other people saw it then it can’t ALL be in your head, right? *shifty eyes*

        I am also cautiously optimistic about Margaery. All those visiting The People scenes had to have a purpose.

        Bring on the religious conflicts! What makes it even more exciting is that we seem to have evidence that all the religions are actually based on something real. There are actual powerful forces at work, on all sides. Who knows how they will come into play.

    • Lisa

      We can hope it’s not just slutshaming. She did orchestrate her husband’s death. So there’s that. I guess.

      • Julie Martin

        I can hold out hope that the armed religious group cared more about murder than sexytime. But that may be wishful thinking, especially if said religious group has its basis in earthly counterparts. I am totally being set up to Be Careful What I Wish For.

        • Julie Martin

          WhatI am saying is I don’t anticipate any religious conflicts will End Well – but I want to watch!

      • Cersei has committed SEVERAL sins in the eyes of their religion. So yeah. Slutshaming is a no no, but someone seeking out their relatives to procreate and ONLY their relatives? That’s not healthy. (lol, WOW, LAURA, SO ERUDITE.)

        • Julie Martin

          Yaaay thank you both for making me feel less guilty for my pleasure at her face in that cell :-)

  • JCDavis

    Mad World…sad sad stuff there. You had to go and get me all misty right out of the gate???? I see what you did there.

    For some reason, for ME, this episode should have been Instant Karma by John Lennon. Yes, mostly for the Cersei scene, which I think was brilliantly acted all the way around…..but there is nothing that feels SO good after all the butthurt she has caused for four seasons, than to see her not so royal arse being thrown behind bars. And I think….they are going to find out much more about her than even she thinks is possible. That is conjecture. I did read the books, but ya know? At this age, pretty dain bramaged!! Memory is an elusive thing to hold on to. Odd thing about memory, I can recall what I wore to the ice skating first date night, but I can’t remember what I had for supper last night. ’nuff on that useless 411.

    My hope for Danys is that Tyrion reminds her of who she is and that she has been sidetracked by pretty boys and stupid stuff for too long instead of focusing her energies back to where it all started…..”I AM SPAR… oops I AM DANYS TARGARYAN”. (interesting bit of trivia,The film became the biggest moneymaker in Universal Studios’ history, until it was surpassed by Airport