Well you guys, for an episode titled “The Spoils of War,” this one really lived up to its name. In somewhat typical Game of Thrones fashion, we got a little bit of everything this week, which led up to that breathtaking and tense final scene. This was also a quick episode; at just over 50 minutes, this was the shortest episode of the show to date. But less here wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, and we got left with one hell of a cliffhanger to start off on next week. Let’s break down what went on this week on Game of Thrones.
And we’ll start with the ending, which was easily the highlight of the episode. Jaime’s brief scenes earlier in the episode were a bit underwhelming, but the second you heard the army screaming beyond the hill, you had a feeling that an ambush would occur. I was a bit confused to see the Dothraki at first, but the second I heard Drogon’s screech, I knew shit was about to go down.
And to put it lightly, it did. Watching Daenarys riding Drogon and burning shit to the ground was extremely satisfying, and this must have been the scene which set the record for most stuntmen on fire at once. The Lannister were pretty much toast here, and the scene last week with the “only a fool fights the Dothraki in an open field” line came true here.
And that final minute deserves an entire article to itself, but I’ll try to keep it fairly brief here. To start it off, it was fucking tense as Bronn attempted to take down Drogon with what is basically a big-ass crossbow. To make matters worse, when the spear hit Drogon, there was some somber music playing in the background, making it seem as if the big beast would die right there. Thankfully, the show psyched us out there, only to mess with us even more.
Which brings me to huge scene that ended the episode. HOLY. SHIT. There were so many different outcomes that could’ve happened from Jaime charging at Dany with the spear, and honestly, I couldn’t tell which was going to happen. Jaime could’ve killed Dany, Drogon could’ve killed Jaime and/or Bronn, or all of them could’ve died. I’ve said it before, but this show doesn’t give a fuck about your feelings.
Right as it seemed like everyone was in the clear, the episode ended on Jaime in the water, possibly drowning. I imagine it’s pretty hard for him to swim with a metal hand, if he can even swim at all. I imagine that Bronn will come to his rescue once again next week, but what happens then? Dany and Drogon are still right there on land, and I imagine they won’t take too kindly to Jaime trying to kill them. It’ll be interesting to see what happens next week with that whole debacle. Overall, the entire battle scene here turned an otherwise good episode into a great one here, and ended on one hell of a high note to be resumed next week.
Prior to Dany’s ambush of the Lannister army, we got some scenes of her and Jon Snow at Dragonstone, examining the cave. Beyond the metric shit-ton of Dragonglass that’s there, they also found some markings that depict a story of their ancestors. It turns out that the Children of the Forest and the First Men actually came together to fight the White Walkers, presumably during a previous Winter. Jon related it to their current struggles, and I bet that’s probably what influenced Dany’s decision to ride her dragons.
But still, at this point, it’s getting a little annoying how stubborn Dany can be. Most of this is about her insistence about Jon “bending the knee,” but also her insistence on being in the battle herself. As we can see by the ending, she almost got herself killed, something Tyrion has told her about 9000 times to this point. Maybe she’ll get it through her head this time.
Apart from this, Jon had a fairly limited role this week, and his only other scene was with Theon as the rest of the Greyjoys returned to Dragonstone. Again, this show’s long term memory is great, and Jon pretty much wants to kill Theon for taking Winterfell from the Starks back in the beginning of the show. If not for his role in saving Sansa, Jon probably would’ve killed Theon on the spot. But for now, he lives. A subtle, yet good scene.
And to cap off the best of the best, we got another Stark family reunion this week! It was great to see Arya reunite with Sansa and Bran this week, and we also may have gotten a disappointing answer to a theory many had about this coming season. Before the season aired, a lot of people assumed that Arya was going to kill Littlefinger because of her possession of his dagger. But as it turns out, Littlefinger simply gave his dagger to Bran, who then in turn gave it to Arya. If this winds up being the final case, it would be a little disappointing. But I don’t think this is the end, due to Sansa’s skepticism about Littlefinger just simply giving the dagger away. Hopefully we’ll see soon.
But arguably, one of the most intriguing parts of the North segment of the episode was Bran’s conversation with Arya, where he doubles down on his earlier statement that he’s “not Bran anymore.” We had previously seen Mira Reed have a similar conversation with Bran earlier in the episode, with little to no emotion. (Side note, I hope we haven’t seen the last of Mira. She’s an underrated character, and seeing her leave as simply as that would feel a little unceremonious.) It’ll be interesting to see his development as we move along in the episode, and I’m doubling down on the “Bran is Bran the Builder” theory. Give it a few days, some Game of Thrones nerds will back me up on it.
To cap the North off, it was amusing to learn that Arya has a list of people she wants to kill. We even got a little bit of heavy-handed foreshadowing, and we can only assume that she’ll be going after Cersei in the immediate future. Seeing her duel with Brienne (and kicking her ass) was great as well, and served as a nice reminder of what Arya’s gone through to be reunited with her family.
Otherwise, the only truly weak part of the episode was Cersei’s brief segment in the beginning of the episode, which was really just more of the same last week. She continued to meet with Tycho, who once again emphasized how she really needs to pay off her debts. That may not happen due to this week’s carnage at the end of the episode. We should get some more entertaining Cersei scenes next week.
Overall though, this was another solid episode of Game of Thrones. It didn’t quite hit the highs that last week’s episode did, but we got one hell of an ending to pick up on next week. Let us know what you thought of this week’s episode, and stay tuned for next week’s episode. Hopefully it doesn’t get leaked by hackers.