I'm calling it -- this is the most important episode of the season thus far. Find out why!
SPOILER ALERT! If you haven't seen episode 6 stop reading now, or you’ll regret it. 'I’ve waited a week for this and I can’t believe you’ve ruined it, you monster' regret. No one likes regret. So, stop thinking about it and just book a Mustang test drive already.
At Dragonstone, a lonely fire crackles as the camera pans over the ornate war table. At this point I suppose the writers will find any excuse to open an episode here.
Thematically it works though, the castle is rather empty now without Dany's string of admiring men, as well as a good chuck of her Unsullied and Dothraki armies. It's a keep lying in wait.
Meanwhile, our Party Posse beyond the wall walk towards their ridiculous quest line with the aid of some truly stunning aerial shots.
Seriously, why is this happening? And why send a king?
Jon inquires how Gendry is doing. It turns out he has never seen snow before. All the Jendry shippers snigger.
Tormund is stoked to be back beyond the wall because the South, AKA Winterfell, smells like pig shit.
He also lays down some knowledge. Apparently the best way to keep from freezing your nads off is by doing the sex.
Jon points out that there aren't any women around for 100 miles. Tormund rather saucily replies, "You have to make do with what you've got." Jon proceeds to look at Gendry. I'm not even joking.
Tormund and Jon talk about how Gendry is apparently a good fighter and how they're all dumb for coming up here to look for zombies. Accurate.
The conversation then turns to Dany, and how Jon won't bend the knee. Tormunds compares him to Mance Rayder. "How many people died for his pride?"
I call foreshadowing. Also, I like that he is basically a Life Coach right now.
Meanwhile, Gendry is still pissed that Thoros and Beric tried to sell him to Melisandre.
- Beric -- "Wars cost money, bro."
- Gendry -- "She tied me to a bed naked and had a leech kink!"
- The Hound -- "Old mate here has died six times, get over it. Also do you still have that chick's number?
Over at a different bro bonding session, Jon and Jorah talk about their dead dads and how honourable there were. Also, Ned wanted to kill execute Jorah. They're both glad that the latter got away
and tried to get pardoned by spying on a teenage girl.
Jon tries to Give Jorah Longclaw back, but Jorah convinces him to keep it. He doesn't deserve it. Also, there's a god damn giant wolf carved into the hilt now.
In Winterfell, Arya talks about how she once snuck out to shoot arrows and Ned was watching the whole time. She doesn't expect Sansa to remember playtime outside because of knitting or some garbage.
Apparently the point of this longwinded story was to 'J'accuse!' Sansa about the scroll from last week. Arya doesn't buy the excuse that her sister was forced into it and only 13 at the time.
No, a knife wasn't at Sansa's throat, but there was one at Ned's. Come on.
There's just a lot of childhood projection going on. Arya remembers about how Sansa was dressed for Ned's execution because surprise, she was present!
- Sansa -- "Hang on you were there?
- Arya -- "YEAH AND I SAW IT ALL!"
- Sansa -- "Okay and what did you do to save Father, Blood?"
- Arya -- "I... err... totally wanted to."
- Sansa -- "Sorry I didn't quite get that over the smell of pig shit.
Arya goes on a rant about how Sansa apparently betrayed their whole family for Joffrey, even though she knows she hated him. It's dumb.
Luckily for us, Sansa pulls rank like a god damn queen and not-so-casually mentions how Winterfell was reclaimed thanks to her. Look, it's quite pompous and reactive but honestly, I would be pissed at this point too. Also, she's not wrong.
She also lays down a sick burn about her on her sister gallivanting around the world this whole time. It's great and Arya has no real come back for it.
She does have the scroll though, and rightly surmises that Sansa is terrified about the Northern Lords finding out about it.
Even thought she's right, this is stupid and bratty.
Christ, they're the only two siblings left who aren't chasing zombies or the dragon. Maybe they shouldn't be bickering over superfluous stuff from the past?
Sansa points out that Cersei would that they're fighting but Arya is too busy enjoying the sound of her own voice.
This whole plot is annoying and has made me like Arya a whole lot less.
Was it stupid of Sansa to believe the Lannisters way back when? Perhaps. But she was a kid whose life experience equated to not much. What were her other options, exactly?
I do like that Arya isn't just a Mary Sue type chararcter anymore. She is complicated and frustrating.
And Sansa was right in calling her out for doing nothing during the execution and then buggering off to do her own thing.
Sure, we've seen Arya just miss reuniting with her family multiple times throughout the show, but she also had ample opportunity to divulge who she was.
Revealing her identity to Tywin, for example, probably would have landed her a prisoner or dead, so she didn't, because it was dangerous. Also, she was busy chasing her own personal vendettas to avenge the dead. Yet she chides Sansa for writing one letter when refusal would have probably spelled death for both herself and Ned?
It's hypocritical bullshit and it's getting old.
Back beyond the wall, Tormund is having a great time annoying The Hound and trying to low key be his therapist. This may be my favourite GoT scene of all time.
It turns out that the former didn't know what "dick" meant and is super excited to add it to his vocabulary. Bless.
Despite some sass from The Hound, Tormund doesn't want to go down on him, because he's still digging on Brienne. Theirs is the greatest ship on this show.
Of course The Hound is all 'DAFUQ' at this gossip and thinks he's insane. Meanwhile, Tormund just wants to make giant babies with Brienne and it's the cutest.
Further back in the pack, Beric doesn't think Jon looks like Ned. I get the feeling he knows a bit about this whole situation.
They chat about being resurrected, which is a totally normal thing. Jon doesn't see a point in serving a God when you don't know what he wants, or why he keeps resurrecting people.
It turns out Beric thinks the true enemy is, death, even though you should always try to fight it, it always wins. They might not know why they keep coming back, but they can try to keep others alive. Cool story, bro.
The whole 'have faith, you don't need to know stuff' spiel sounded like the same non-answers I used to get at church, but Jon seems inspired by it.
Also, The Hound recognises the mountain he saw in his literal heat vision, so they must be getting close.
Back in Dragonstone, Dany and Tyrion chat about how she likes that he isn't a hero. Really it's just an excuse to bring up all the dudes who have been into her, including Jon. Tyrion totally busts her on it.
Dany is all, "STFU, he doesn't like me. Stop. Really? No he's too short. Did he mention me to you? LET'S CHAT ABOUT CERSEI."
There is a lot of talk about deceit and mass murder, and how those aren't the best ways to win the throne. Fear is also Cersei has, and it's brittle.
Tyrion reminds Dany that she said she wanted to break the wheel and to do that she has to be different. Also, please calm down on the temper tantrums that lead to impulsive decisions. And try to think like a Lannister.
Dinklage's delivery of this speech is passionate and believable. I'm a real fan of his performance in this scene.
He also brings up the matter of succession and this pisses Dany off. She wants him to think short term rather than long term and won't discuss it until she wears the crown.
That seems smart when your only children are dragons and you're in the middle of a war.
On the other hand, who would she even name as her successor at this point?
Meanwhile, the Party Posse are making their way through a snow storm. There are giant zombie bears, because of course there are.
Much fighting and flaming swords ensue and it's not looking good for the extras in the scene. The Hound faces off against one on his own, but Thoros steps in to save him and gets mauled.
He manages to survive though, through the power of alcohol and flaming-sword-cauterisation.
Back in Winterfell, Sansa plays right into Littlefinger's hands by telling him all his Scheme Scroll. He's done a great job at being her manipulative boyfriend.
Also, he has NO IDEA how the letter fell into Arya's hands. No ma'am.
He takes this opportunity to further solidify the idea of ruling over Winterfell in her mind. However Sansa, seems to think the Northern Lords are a bunch of fickle basics.
She also thinks that Arya would come after her if she thought she posed a threat to Jon.
Littlefinger thinks Brienne's oath to protect both Stark sisters could be helpful here. She's honour bound to protect them. So imagine if a threat was posed to one of them.
I know it seems like the implication is that Brienne would kill Arya if she had to. But I wonder if Littlefinger's plan is a simple as that? Perhaps it's more about ensuring that she isn't able to protect Arya if needed?
In the North, Jorah is asking how drunk Thoros was when he charged the breach. He fan boys for a bit and says the Iron Born thought he was a God.
"Nah, I was just crunk."
Suddenly, noises! The Posse spot a small group of White Walkers and decide to lay a trap to capture their specimen.
Fighting ensues. Jorah gets choked out at one point and not in a fun way.
Eventually they take down the leader and the rest of the zombies crumble. INTERESTING.
They also manage to take one alive, so to speak. It does bite The Hound though. Does this mean he will turn? Is that how this works?
Before the get time to question it, there's a rumbling on the horizon. Uh oh.
Jon orders Gendry to run back to Eastwatch to send a raven to Dany. Without his hammer. Because it will slow him down. THIS SEEMS SAFE.
Also, I guess they'll be using the fast ravens this time around? How long did the "Bran and Arya arrive!" one take? Seriously, the travel times this season how been excessively inconsistent.
The rest of the crew run across some unstable ice that starts cracking under their feet, with thousands of undead at their heels who start falling through.
Our boys find a convenient rock to be surrounded by.
I WONDER IF A DRAGON WILL SAVE THEM!?
Meanwhile, Gendry runs like buggery and gets to Eastwatch by nightfall. What even is the timing and distance in this show? Jesus.
He makes it though, just. Thirstos comes out to collect him.
We cut back to the Posse the next morning. Their specimen is twitching around and The Hound kicks it.
Speaking of which, Thoros has died for good this time. I guess that means no more resurrections for Beric.
Jon mentions that they need to burn the body. Luckily they have those handy flaming swords.
Jorah and Jon chat casually about how they'll all freeze soon. Also it was weird when all those White Walkers crumbled when they took out the lieutenant or whatever.
They theorise that it must have been because he's the one that turned them and that by that logic, capping the Night King is the key to killing them all. Beric thinks maybe that's maybe what Jon has been resurrected for. Jon would rather wait for Dany so they can get the zombie specimen back to Cersei.
In the meantime, Sansa has been invited to King's Landing and asks Brienne to go in her place.
She doesn't want to be a prisoner again. Also Brienne not being around to protect Arya would be A+ right now.
Brienne isn't keen. She doesn't trust Littlefinger and wants to leave Podrick behind for protection. Sansa is having none of it and basically tells her to GTFO in a really bitchy way.
I basically hate all of the true-born Stark kids at the point.
At Dragonstone, the dragons are having a nap and it's cute.
Dany is heading off to save all of her boyfriends and Tyrion isn't happy about her risking her life. If she dies they're all screwed.
She declares that she won't do nothing ever again.
The most important part of this scene is her amazing outfit. About 1000 cosplays got started at this very moment.
Back to the circle of hell, The Hound is bored and starts throwing rocks. He's quite pleased with himself when he hits one and takes the opportunity to drop an on-brand C-bomb.
He decides to throw another and it lands on some very solid ice.
White Walker -- "WHO DA C-BOMB NOW!?"
The horde starts moving forward because the Hound is a stupid bitch.
The Posse starts fighting because they don't have any other choice at this point.
What follows is an intense battle that mostly consists of psych outs aimed to make us think someone important is about to die. For example, things look really dire for Tormund at one point, which resulted in me screaming hysterically at my television.
Don't worry though, plenty of disposable randoms who were allegedly in the party ALL ALONG, died just fine.
We're treated to a bit of slow-mo action of our boys losing before we hear the dragon cry. And he lights that sucker UP.
Jon looks up and Dany is all, "Sup?"
Things are looking real good for their heroes... and then one of the Night King's right hand men grabs a formidable looking ice spear.
Our boys hop on one of the dragons.
Oh no no no no.
The spear flies through the air and hits one of them directly, and he goes down hard and fast. The posse look on in shock and horror as the beautiful creature slips away into the ice.
Dany's face registers pure shock. What I think is Drogon cries out for his fallen brother.
I'm not ashamed to admit that I'm crying at this point.
Meanwhile, Jon is pissed and eyeballs Old Man Winter... who is about to be handed another spear.
Jon yells at his party to leave and gets crashed tackled through the ice. And this is exactly why you don't send a king off to do heavy work. It's a super irresponsible move as a ruler.
Dany has more of a reaction to this situation than one of her children dying. She does take off though and fortunately the second spear misses Drogon.
Jorah nearly falls off but doesn't, because no one super important dies in the same episode as a dragon-death. Except Thoros.
The White Walkers conveniently begin to disperse, allowing Jon to pull himself out of the water. But of course the spot him immediately and go in for another crack.
Fortunately, Uncle Where-The-Hell-Have-I-Benjen swoops in to the rescue. He sends Jon riding off on his horse and then sacrifices himself to the horde for absolutely no reason. Two people can rise a horse.
This is like The Titanic all over again.
Back at Eastwatch, which basically just through the next clearing, the posse loads up their boat with the zombie specimen.
Tormund and The Hound share a vaguely respectful look, and the latter sasses Beric. It's great.
On top of the Wall, Dany keeps a lookout for Jon. She's seen this show before and knows falling through some ice with a bunch of zombies is NBD.
Jorah tries to lure her away, probably because he doesn't want any more competition, but of course that's when the horse shows up.
Cut to Jon passed out on the ship and being stripped down. Dany notices his very real scar around his heart and probably has some follow up questions.
Over in Winterfell, Sansa is is rifling through Arya's things, because that's a smart life choice that promotes sibling trust.
Naturally she discovers the creepy faces and gets busted.
Basically what transpires is Arya intimidating her sister for no reason. She talks about Braavos and the Faceless Men and how she could totally become Sansa if she wanted to. She's successful in freaking her sister out but of course doesn't actually do anything.
Honestly, this whole 'I'm so creepy and mysterious' vibe Arya has been laying down comes Across as so contrived. It's like she's playacting as Faceless Man rather than just being real.
I'm so frustrated by this whole storyline, but I'm in two minds about it.
I never expected Sansa and Arya to be best mates for life, but this warring between sisters seems purely based on childhood differences Arya can't let go of. She's tapping into jealousy and rivalry and disguising it as family loyalty.
Considering the fact that they are fighting against Cersei as well as the actual undead, this petty shit seems rather superfluous.
On the other hands, they are also still teenagers and Arya in particular never got a chance to develop any kind of emotional maturity since the age of 11 or so. She has been fighting for her life, often out in the wilderness, so perhaps we shouldn't be surprised that she's been emotionally stunted.
She's also been so single minded and bent on revenge for a long time -- maybe she doesn't know how to be anything else? She has to find conflict somewhere, even if its to the detriment of her relationships and her house.
In what seems like a nod to SnowStorm fans, their ship is literally sailing.
Also, I guess nobody thought Jon might want to pop over to Winterfell to see his not-dead brother and sister first?
Jon wakes up to a teary-eyed Daenerys. They stare at each other for a bit before he starts apologising profusely for getting her dragon-kid murdered with his dumb plan. They hold hands.
Jon wishes they never went. SAME.
Dany is glad they went though because now she has seen
his abs the White Walkers for herself. She reiterates how she'll never have any children and how they will take down the Night King together.
Despite the huge deal Dany has always made about her dragons being her children, she seems surprisingly fine. Her tears seem to be more in relief that Jon survived.
Jon calls her Dany and she isn't super down with it since that's what her douche-brother used to call her. Sorry, Dany! Jon wonders whether "My Queen" would be better and makes a bending the knee joke.
They both wax rhapsodic at each other for a bit longer, hold hands again and engage in some intense stares. Dany goes to pull her hand away and Jon vice-grips it. This seems to spook her a tad and she She GTFOs pretty quick
There's been so much 'I can't have kids' talk in the last few episodes. Coupling that with Tyrion's succession chat, I'm starting to think that when these two finally get down his magic incest seed will break the infertility curse.
Back beyond the Wall, the army of the dead are pulling some massive chains out of the water. Apparently they just had them lying around. And could swim down to attach them, even though the plot device surrounding this entire episode has been about how they couldn't cross this same body of water. Just, what?
To no one's surprise, the Night King approaches his prize, and creates himself a god damn ice dragon.
Things are about to get so real. Well, not the travel parts. But other things.
I'm wondering if Cersei will actually give a shit about the White Walkers, even when she's presented with proof. She's made it pretty obvious that she's happy to watch the
sept world burn (or ice over in this case) so long as her family is okay. And even then she was still threatening Jaime in the last episode.
I honestly don't think she would be above selling humanity out for her own personal interests.
As for the ice dragon -- damn. They're gonna need to forge a giant dragon glass spears real fast.
See you for the finale next week!
We're in the latter half of the season and things are developing quickly. We can see this in the opening sequence where The Pyke has been replaced by this weeks's episode title -- Eastwatch.
That's enough violence, flirting and scheming for one day. It’s time to stop thinking and start driving. Book your Mustang test drive today.