Here's Everything I Noticed Rewatching “Game Of Thrones” Season 6


In preparation of Season 8 of Game of Thrones, I’m rewatching and recapping every season that’s come before. So far I’ve dived deep into Season 1, Season 2, Season 3, Season 4 and Season 5. Now, it’s time for Season 6…

Episode 1: “The Red Woman”

The Big Plot Stuff:

• Davos discovers Jon Snow’s dead body and barricades himself in a room with it alongside Dolorous Edd, Ghost, and some other trusted men. Edd escapes to bring back the wildlings. Melisandre, alone in her room, takes off her choker and reveals her true appearance before climbing into bed.

• Ramsay mourns Myranda, and Roose gets angry that Ramsay lost Sansa. Sansa, meanwhile, runs through the woods with Theon, away from Ramsay’s hounds and hunters. They’re nearly caught, but Brienne and Podrick show up just in time and kill Ramsay’s men. Brienne pledges herself to Sansa and Sansa accepts.

• Cersei is happily awaiting Myrcella’s return, but is greeted instead by Jaime bringing home Myrcella’s corpse. Cersei realises Maggy the Frog’s prophecy is coming true. Jaime says “fuck prophecy…fuck everyone who isn’t us.”

• Margaery is still in prison. She begs to see Loras, also still imprisoned, while the Shame Nun tries to make her confess, and the High Sparrow preaches at her.

• Ellaria and the Sand Snakes kill Prince Doran and Prince Trystane, because Oberyn, who died trying to avenge his sister and niece and nephew, would have TOTALLY wanted his lover and daughters killing his brother and nephew.

• Meereen is a ghost town because everyone is afraid of the Sons of the Harpy. Meanwhile, Daario and Jorah track Dany and realise the Dothraki have taken her. Dany, for her part, is being dragged along and whipped by Qhono. She does her “pretending I don’t know this language until PLOT TWIST” thing. The Dothraki take her to Vaes Dothrak – she’s right back where she started, basically.

• Arya is blind and begging in the street. The Waif fights her.

Symbolism, foreshadowing and callbacks:

• It’s a bit tinfoily, but a lot of people think the blood pattern around Jon starts off in the shape of the wolf and ends up in the shape of a dragon (and maybe a tower representing the Tower of Joy).

• Melisandre says “I saw [Jon] in the flames, fighting at Winterfell”. This could of course mean the Battle of the Bastards – but I wonder if it’s connected to the actual Battle of Winterfell in Season 8, considering that is the ~great war~.

• The scene where Brienne pledges herself to Sansa echoes the moment she pledged her sword to Catelyn.

Stray observations:

• How did Sansa and Theon seriously survive that jump from the top of Winterfell?

• Melisandre without her choker is a real 2019 mood.

Episode 2: “Home”

The Big Plot Stuff:

• Bran and the Three Eyed Raven return to the plot and go right into a flashback, watching Benjen and Ned spar as children at Winterfell. We get our first glimpse of Lyanna Stark, as well as a young Hodor – who can talk, and whose real name is Wylis. Old Nan and a young Ser Rodrik are also there. When the Three Eyed Raven pulls Bran out of the vision, he warns him not to stay too long in the “sea” because he’ll “drown”. Meanwhile, Meera is going stir crazy and Leaf tells her that Bran will need her when he leaves the weirwood.

• The wildlings arrive at Castle Black just in time to make Thorne and his Night’s Watch buddies stand down from attacking Davos and the other men protecting Jon’s body. Davos asks Melisandre to try resurrecting Jon and IT WORKS. HE’S ALIVE. ALIIIIIVE.

• At Winterfell, Lord Karstark pledges loyalty to the Boltons. Walda has a baby boy, and Ramsay immediately murders Roose, Walda AND the baby. It’s awful.

• Brienne tells Sansa about seeing Arya, and Theon bids farewell to Sansa to head to the Iron Islands.

• Euron Greyjoy arrives on the Iron Islands and murders his brother Balon.

• Tommen forces Cersei to stay in the Red Keep rather than attend Myrcella’s funeral as he’s afraid the High Sparrow will imprison her again. Jaime convinces Tommen to visit Cersei.

• The masters have retaken Slaver’s Bay, with the exception of Meereen. Tyrion unchains the dragons in an emotional scene.

• The Waif and Jaqen play the Game of Faces with Arya, and she’s getting better at it. Jaqen brings her in off the street.

Symbolism, foreshadowing and callbacks:

• The flashback scene echoes the shot in the pilot of Ned and Catelyn watching Bran and his brothers training. It also connects Ned’s training style to Jon’s, as we hear Ned say “keep your shield up or I’ll ring your head like a bell”, just like Jon said to Olly last season. Lyanna riding into the courtyard and showing off in front of her brothers is reminiscent of Yara riding into Winterfell when Theon was there. And Bran says “my father never talked about her”, which reiterates what Sansa said about Lyanna in Season 5.

• Tommen says to Cersei “I should have pulled down the sept onto the High Sparrow’s head…as you would have for me.” Which is basically what Cersei does in the Season 6 finale.

• When Melisandre says she “met a man who came back from the dead” she’s talking about Beric Dondarrion.

Stray observations:

• It hurts to see how much Bran yearns for Winterfell and home in this episode, considering the fact that by the time he gets there in Season 7, he doesn’t really care anymore.

• Cersei and Tommen have matching haircuts, lol.

• Theon and Sansa’s hug made me very emotional.

• JON’S ALIVE. It never gets old.

• This is the last episode we saw Ghost in, which is frankly unacceptable.

Episode 3: “Oathbreaker”

The Big Plot Stuff:

• Davos goes full Dadvos and comforts the newly-alive and completely anxious Jon Snow, while Tormund and Edd are happy to see him. Melisandre is disappointed he, like Beric, saw “nothing” on the other side. Jon executes the men who murdered him – and Olly. He then hands his cloak to Edd and says “my watch is ended”. ICONIC.

• Bran and the Three Eyed Raven enter a flashback of the Tower of Joy (a.k.a. Jon Snow’s birth). They watch a young Ned Stark fight alongside Howland Reed (Meera’s father) against Ser Arthur Dayne. The Three Eyed Raven pulls Bran out of the vision before he sees what’s in the Tower – but not before he calls out to Ned, and Ned seems to hear him. FORESHADOWING.

• Smalljon Umber, the TRAITOR, gives Osha and Rickon to Ramsay because he’s mad at Jon for bringing wildlings into Westeros. He also reveals he’s killed Shaggydog.

• Dany arrives back in Vaes Dothrak and is hassled for not going straight to the Dosh Khaleen after Khal Drogo died.

• In King’s Landing, the Small Council is falling apart and turning against the Lannisters – even Pycelle.

• Arya plays the Game of Faces and wins. Jaqen allows her to drink from the well in the House of Black and White and she gets her eyesight back.

Symbolism, foreshadowing and callbacks:

• Melisandre says “Stannis was not the Prince Who Was Promised but someone has to be”. I really hope we get a definitive answer about this prophecy in Season 8.

• Bran is shocked at the way Howland Reed stabs Ser Arthur Dayne to save Ned, but when Bran met Jojen and Meera he said he knew their father had saved his father’s life.

• The Three Eyed Raven says “stay too long where you don’t belong and you will never return”. I don’t really buy the Bran is the Night King theory, but this line does lend it some weight.

• Tyrion tries to get Missandei and Grey Worm to play a drinking game – it’s the same game he played with Shae and Bronn in Season 1.

• The High Sparrow says “the crown and the faith are the twin pillars of the world”, quoting Cersei. He also says “a true leader avails himself of the wisest council they can”, which is the same advice Tywin gave to Tommen after Joffrey’s death.

• Arya’s list is now down to “Cersei Lannister. Gregor Clegane. Walder Frey.”

Stray observations:

• Jon Snow. Naked. That is all.

• “I did what I thought was right and I got murdered for it.” – House Stark in a nutshell.

• It’s still so satisfying to watch Olly die. What has this show done to me?

• The Three Eyed Raven knew everything that was going to happen – why didn’t he just release the spoilers?!

• Shaggydog. 🙁

Episode 4: “Book of the Stranger”

The Big Plot Stuff:

• Sansa arrives at Castle Black and reunites with Jon (MY HEART! STARKS TOGETHER AT LAST!). They bond over memories of Winterfell and their regret over leaving, and Sansa apologises for being an ass to Jon when they were growing up. Sansa begs Jon to help her get Winterfell back but he’s tired of fighting – until a letter arrives from Ramsay revealing he has Rickon. It’s this that makes Jon agree to go to war once again. Meanwhile, Tormund spots Brienne and flirts outrageously with her, but she is not interested.

• Littlefinger arrives back in the Vale and manipulates Robin Arryn into agreeing to order the Knights of the Vale to “rescue” Sansa from Castle Black.

• Tyrion invites the masters of Slaver’s Bay to negotiate in Meereen, telling them while slavery won’t return to Meereen, there will be a seven year grace period for the rest of Slaver’s Bay to allow time to adjust. Missandei and Grey Worm aren’t happy.

• Daario and Jorah sneak into Vaes Dothrak, where Daenerys is being nagged by the Dosh Khaleen. She doesn’t want to run away, though – she has a bigger plan. She does her fire trick thing and kills all the Khals and the Dothraki all bow down to her.

• The High Sparrow allows Margaery to see Loras, who is not doing well. He begs Margaery to help him. It turns out the High Sparrow wants Margaery to do a walk of atonement, like Cersei. Cersei tells the Tyrells and they agree to work together to get Margaery out of it.

• Theon returns to Pyke and tells Yara he will support her bid to become queen of the Iron Islands.

• At Winterfell, Osha tries to seduce Ramsay – as she previously did to Theon – but Ramsay reveals Theon told him everything, and kills her.

Symbolism, foreshadowing and callbacks:

• Melisandre reiterates once again that Jon is the Prince That Was Promised.

• Theon’s return to Pyke echoes his first homecoming, making the contrast between who he was and who he is now all the more potent.

• Dany talks extensively about the ceremony in which she ate the heart and Drogo promised her the world at the Temple of the Dosh Khaleen in Vaes Dothrak before she burns it to the ground. When she emerges from the temple and Jorah and the Dothraki bow down to her, it’s a direct callback to the Season 1 finale – only on a much bigger scale.

Stray observations:

• “Where will WE go” – it makes me so happy to see Sansa and Jon united here and I hope there’s not too much tension with them in Season 8.

• Osha. 🙁

Episode 5: “The Door”

The Big Plot Stuff:

• Littlefinger gets a message to Sansa at Castle Black, and she meets him with Brienne in Mole’s Town. She confronts him for leaving her with Ramsay, while he tells her the Blackfish has retaken Riverrun and says she needs her own army – not Jon’s. He’s already trying to cause tension between them.

• Jon and co try to figure out a strategy for building an army. Sansa reveals the news about the Tully army reforming, but lies to Jon about how she learned it. She sends Brienne with Pod to Riverrun to ask the Blackfish for help. Jon, Sansa, Davos and Melisandre depart Castle Black to attempt to win over the Northern lords to their cause.

• Jaqen gives Arya a new mission – she must kill an actor, Lady Crane. Arya enjoys the play – which is basically a retelling of the events of Season 1 – until she has to relive Ned’s death. She also realises Lady Crane is a decent woman and doesn’t want to kill her, but Jaqen says she must.

• Bran and the Three Eyed Raven go back in time in another vision – this time to the creation of the first White Walker. Turns out he was a human who had obsidian thrust into his heart by the Children of the Forest, to turn him into a weapon for their fight against mankind. Later, Bran is bored and decides to take a little weirwood ride all by himself. He goes back to the place where the Walkers were born, although now it’s frozen over. He sees the Army of the Dead and the White Walkers – and to his shock, they see him. The Night King grabs Bran, leaving a mark that enables him to find Bran and enter the weirwood cave. The Three Eyed Raven downloads everything into Bran’s head at once while the Walkers and their wights attack. All the Children of the Forest die, as well as Summer and the Three Eyed Raven. Hodor becomes Hodor in the past due to Bran’s warging fuck-up, and in the present Bran sacrifices him by forcing him to hold the door so he and Meera can escape.

• At the kingsmoot on Pyke, Yara almost becomes queen, but Euron Greyjoy shows up and wins over all the sexists at the last minute (this feels…way too real). He’s crowned king and Yara and Theon escape with 100 ships and the men loyal to Yara, stealing Euron’s plan to sail to Meereen and ally with Daenerys.

• Jorah reveals to Dany that he has greyscale and she commands him to find a cure and then return to her. She leaves Vaes Dothrak with her Dothraki horde, a true Khaleesi once again.

• In Meereen, Tyrion asks a red priestess to spread support for Daenerys, and she agrees because she is the “one who was promised”.

Symbolism, foreshadowing and callbacks:

• The ruined brothel in Mole’s Town where Sansa meets Littlefinger is the one we saw the wildlings destroy in Season 4. The fact they were meeting at the brothel also reminded me of Littlefinger bringing Cat to his in Season 1.

• In the background of Bran’s visions, you can see the “mountain shaped like an arrowhead” which is where the Suicide Squad discover the White Walkers in Season 7. The circular pattern of the stones around the weirwood also calls back to the pattern the White Walkers have made in the past, and is seen again in the cave drawings in Season 7.

• It’s interesting that the vision Bran is in at the moment he turns Hodor into Hodor, and he himself becomes the Three Eyed Raven, is a flashback to when young Ned is sent off to the Eyrie. His father says to him “remember that you are a Stark” – which is something Bran himself has kind of forgotten. Perhaps he will remember in Season 8?

• The red priestess brings up what Varys heard in the flames when he was cut – this is a mystery that still needs to be solved.

• Sansa makes cloaks for herself and Jon that deliberately mirror the cloaks worn by Ned and Catelyn.

• Jon says to Edd “don’t knock it down while I’m gone”, speaking of the Wall. Not ominous at all! (To be fair, Edd didn’t knock it down.)

Stray observations:

• The scene where Sansa confronts Littlefinger is incredible, but the thought of what Ramsay did to her is so horrifying.

• Sorry but Euron Greyjoy’s crown is literally the ugliest I’ve ever seen. Also, um, how are they gonna build 1000 ships in enough time to…you know what, never mind. I’m going to try to go with the flow and not get sucked into these gaping plot holes from here on out. There are too many.

• Jorah says to Dany “you must send me away” but she ALREADY DID TWICE, so why did he keep coming back just to tell her he must leave??? Jorah what are you doing.

• Meera killed a White Walker – she’s one of only a few characters to do so – and I can’t get over they’ve just written her out of the series now.

• Another direwolf bites the dust. RIP Summer. 🙁


Episode 6: “Blood of My Blood”

The Big Plot Stuff:

• Meera and Bran are nearly killed by wights, but the undead Benjen arrives and saves them just in time. Benjen reveals the reason he disappeared – he was attacked by a White Walker, and the Children of the Forest prevented him from becoming a wight by inserting dragonglass into his heart.

• Sam takes Gilly to Horn Hill, his childhood home, because he thinks she and baby Sam will be safer there than at the Citadel. His mother and sister are welcoming, his brother is neutral, and his father is not – especially when he learns Gilly is a wildling. Sam takes Gilly and the baby, as well as the valyrian steel family sword, Heartsbane, and departs in the night.

• Arya is back at the play and enjoying watching Joffrey die at the purple wedding. She poisons Lady Crane’s rum but has second thoughts and prevents her from drinking it. She retrieves Needle while the Waif reports back to Jaqen that Arya has failed and must die.

• Jaime and the Tyrell army march to the Sept to rescue Margaery and Loras, not knowing Margaery has already made a deal with the High Sparrow – she’s brought Tommen into the fold in exchange for her freedom. Jaime is heartbroken – especially when Tommen dismisses him from the kingsguard and sends him to retake Riverrun for the Freys.

• Dany reunites with Drogon and impresses the Dothraki even more, making every one of them her bloodriders.

Symbolism, foreshadowing and callbacks:

• Bran’s vision includes shots of wildfire; the Mad King shouting “burn them all”; Jaime killing the Mad King and sitting on the throne; Drogon flying over King’s Landing; the dragons being born; the White Walkers being created; the Night King turning Craster’s Last Son; Jon at the battle at Hardhome; the army of the dead marching; Bran’s fall; Bran’s encounter with the Night King; the deaths of Ned, Cat and Robb; a young Ned at the Tower of Joy; Ned touching the blood on what we later find out is Lyanna’s belly; a bunch of ravens; and the shot of the sky from the cold open of Season 2.

• It’s interesting that when Lady Crane asks Arya if she likes pretending to be other people, Arya says “I’ve got to go, my father’s waiting for me” – and it’s after this that Arya has second thoughts and saves Lady Crane’s life. It seems like a moment where Arya remembers her Starkness, and the fact she likes being a Stark. After all, she then goes and immediately gets Needle.

• Tommen repeats the “crown and the faith are the twin pillars” line that the High Sparrow and Cersei have both said previously.

• Jaime angrily leaving the kingsguard is reminiscent of Ser Barristan’s dismissal.

• I wonder if the dragonglass-in-the-heart trick will be used on someone in Season 8, or perhaps be a clue to defeating the Night King.

• Dany’s speech to the Dothraki is almost the same as Khal Drogo’s in Season 1 – minus the rapey bits.

Stray observations:

• Cersei says to Jaime “without you, all this is for nothing”. She sure seems to have changed her mind about that by the end of Season 7.

Episode 7: “The Broken Man”

The Big Plot Stuff:

• The Hound is back!!! He’s been staying with Brother Ray and his crew of hippies, who patched him up after Brienne bested him. The Hound seems reasonably happy, which is why he’s extra pissed when three members of the Brotherhood Without Banners slaughter everyone while he’s off chopping wood.

• Margaery is free, but having to put on a pious act to please the High Sparrow as Loras is still locked up. She wears much more conservative clothes and hairstyles now. The High Sparrow reveals Tommen told him Margaery won’t have sex with him, and he issues a veiled threat against Olenna. Margaery meets with Olenna and tells her to leave the city, slipping a drawing of a rose into her hand to indicate she is still loyal to House Tyrell.

• Jon asks the wildlings to fight with him to get Winterfell back. They’re resistant but agree when Tormund reminds them that Jon literally died for them. Jon, Sansa and Davos then travel to Bear Island and persuade Lyanna Mormont to back them – she gives them 62 fighting men. They then go to House Glover, but are refused. They set up camp where Stannis previously camped near Winterfell. Sansa tells Jon they need more men, but Jon wants to attack before a storm hits them like it did to Stannis. Sansa writes to Littlefinger asking for help, and for some ridiculous reason, doesn’t tell Jon.

• Jaime arrives at Riverrun to take over the siege from the Freys. He parleys with the Blackfish but is rebuffed.

• In Volantis, Yara and her crew blow off steam with some sex slaves, while Yara gives Theon some (too) tough love about snapping out of his trauma.

• Arya books passage home and then wanders around the streets of Braavos like she doesn’t have a murderous Waif who can disguise herself as anyone after her. Surprise! The Waif shows up in disguise and stabs her. Arya jumps into the river and then walks through the streets bleeding. Cool cool cool.

Symbolism, foreshadowing and callbacks:

• Brother Ray reiterates what Beric previously told The Hound – the god(s) have plans for him.

• Olenna says to Cersei “you’re surrounded by enemies…you going to kill them all by yourself” WHICH IS EXACTLY WHAT SHE DOES.

• Jaime insisting the Freys allow Edmure – their prisoner – to bathe and be comfortable is a reminder of how badly the Starks treated him.

• Lord Glover sneeringly talks about how Robb took up with a “foreign whore” and got everyone who followed him killed. Hoo boy I am nervous about how the Northerners are going to react when Jon brings home Dany.

• The “face” the Waif uses to attack Arya is the same one Arya saw when she first entered the Hall of Faces.

Stray observations:

• The Dadvos jumps out on Bear Island. And yes, I love Lyanna Mormont with my whole heart.

• Seriously, if Sansa wanted Jon to listen to her, why didn’t she just TELL HIM ABOUT THE KNIGHTS OF THE VALE.

• Brother Ray is exactly the kind of man the High Sparrow is pretending to be.

• I hate everything about Arya’s storyline in Braavos this season.

Episode 8: “No One”

The Big Plot Stuff:

• Arya seeks help from Lady Crane, who looks after her and patches her wounds. They have a nice moment and it’s a reminder that this is the most anyone has taken care of Arya since she left home in Season 1. Unfortunately, the Waif finds them and kills Lady Crane. She then chases Arya through Braavos like a Terminator, but Arya lures her into her secret hideout and kills her in the dark with Needle (all that time without her eyesight paid off for Arya). Arya then tells Jaqen she’s going home.

• The Hound goes after the Brotherhood men who killed his friends. He slaughters four people before finding the actual culprits about to be hanged by Beric and Thoros. They let him kill two of the men and try to convince him to join them as they’re heading North.

• Meereen is more secure thanks to Tyrion’s deal with the masters (or so he thinks!), and Varys departs on a super secret mission which we later find out is a trip to Dorne to bring them on board as Dany’s allies. The masters then launch an attack on Meereen. Tyrion admits he was wrong to an angry Missandei and Grey Worm, and Dany arrives in the midst of the fight. Mum is NOT impressed.

• The Faith Militant try to take Cersei back to the High Sparrow but the Mountain steps in and literally beheads one of them with his bare hands. Tommen then announces that he’s banning trials by combat, ruining Cersei’s plans. He also refuses to speak to her.

• Brienne and Jaime reunite at Riverrun and share an emotional scene about Sansa, honour and the prospect of fighting each other (which neither of them want). Jaime agrees to let Brienne into Riverrun to try to convince the Blackfish to leave it and fight for Sansa instead. The Blackfish refuses. Jaime then threatens Edmure’s baby’s life and Edmure agrees to surrender Riverrun. The Blackfish goes down fighting, but not before he helps Brienne and Pod escape.

Symbolism, foreshadowing and callbacks:

• When the Faith Militant guy dies, there’s a shot of his blood dripping down into the drains, reminding the audience of the existence of the tunnels, ready for Cersei’s big finale.

• Qyburn says to Cersei “the old rumour you told me about – my little birds investigated”. He’s talking about the rumour that the Mad King had wildfire hidden in the tunnels under the city.

• Jaime says “it’s yours, it will always be yours” when talking about his sword with Brienne, but really he means his OTHER sword. You know, his heart. *cough*

• Also, Jaime and Brienne wistfully looking at each other as they wave goodbye is reminiscent of their farewell scene in Season 4.

• Tyrion reveals he wants to have his own vineyard one day. Let’s see if he lives to make that happen.

• Tyrion also tries to tell his “honeycomb and a jackass” story but gets foiled again.

• Beric reiterates that the Hound is “here for a reason” and tells him “you can still help more than you’ve harmed”, which echoes what Brother Ray said to him earlier.

Stray observations:

• Bronn ships Jaime and Brienne as much as I do.

• I know it got a lot of flack for being filler, but the joke scene with Tyrion, Missandei and Grey Worm is a nice reprieve from all the stress. I also love the way Grey Worm smiles at Missandei when she laughs at his joke.

• Arya’s story in this episode, once again, absolutely sucks, but at least it leads to the epic line: “A girl is Arya Stark of Winterfell. And I’m going home.” FINALLY.

Episode 9: “Battle of the Bastards”

The Big Plot Stuff:

• In the Battle of Meereen, Dany rides Drogon, and Viserion and Rhaegal escape the catacombs and join the two of them in fighting the masters’ fleet. Meanwhile, Tyrion, Missandei and Grey Worm negotiate peace with the masters – killing two of them and leaving one alive to tell the story and encourage others to keep Daenerys’ peace. Later, Theon and Yara arrive in Meereen and Dany agrees to ally with them and give the Iron Islands independence if they’ll commit to stopping reaving and raping.

• Jon, Sansa and co meet with Ramsay. Jon offers to fight him one-on-one to avoid a battle and Ramsay refuses. Smalljon Umber shows them Shaggydog’s head to prove they have Rickon. Sansa realises there’s no hope for getting Rickon back but Jon refuses to acknowledge this. Sansa tells Jon not to fall for Ramsay’s tricks and urges him again to wait for more men, but Jon responds that there’s no time. If only he knew about the possibility of the Knights of the Vale nearby…

• Jon and co plan to draw Ramsay and his men out so they can surround them, but Ramsay ruins their plans and forces them into the centre of the battlefield to be surrounded. He does this by bringing Rickon out, forcing him to run and shooting arrows at him. Jon tries to ride to him in time but just misses out and Rickon dies. (SOB!!!) Jon’s army follow him and the Battle of the Bastards is officially on. All seems lost until the Knights of the Vale show up, accompanied by Sansa and Littlefinger, at the last minute. Wun Wun helps Jon break into Winterfell, where Ramsay has retreated, and Jon beats the shit out of him. He only stops when he sees Sansa, leaving the kill for her. Sansa has Ramsay tied up and lets his starving hounds pull him to pieces.

• Davos finds the stag he made for Shireen and realises she was burned by Melisandre.

Symbolism, foreshadowing and callbacks:

• Dany talks about destroying the cities of the masters and Tyrion compares her to the Mad King, setting up for his further concerns about her in Season 7.

• Tyrion’s version of his last interaction with Theon is not entirely accurate – it was he who was rude to Theon, not the other way around.

• Ramsay tries to annoy Jon by repeatedly calling him “bastard” but it doesn’t bother Jon – a huge contrast to how much it angered him in Season 1. He’s learned to wear it like armour just as Tyrion advised him.

• Jon says to Ramsay “will your men want to fight for you when they hear you wouldn’t fight for them” which both connects him to Team Dany (as Grey Worm says a similar line about the masters not fighting for their men) and contrasts him with Ramsay, as the reason the wildlings are fighting for Jon is because he fought (and died) for them.

• The crush that nearly kills Jon is really significant. We see Jon struggling and having to actively fight for his life. All season he’s seemed to regret being alive, but here he chooses life. The moment he does so and emerges from the crush visually parallels the “mhysa” crowd scene Daenerys was involved in. It’s also, importantly, the moment the Knights of the Vale arrive and the Starks start winning.

• It’s also significant that the shield Jon uses to protect himself from Ramsay is a Mormont shield. The Mormonts play such a huge part in both Jon and Dany’s parallels stories, but especially in Jon’s – he was mentored by a Mormont, fights with a Mormont sword, protects himself with a Mormont shield – and is later named King in the North by the Mormont named after his mother.

Stray observations:

• It’s so sad seeing how small Viserion and Rhaegal are compared to Drogon.

• I love the idea of the people in the North spreading rumours about what a great swordsman Jon is.

• Speaking of which: the shot of Jon pulling out his sword and getting ready to face down the incoming army alone is one of my favourites of the whole series.

• Jon looks really, really hot in this episode. Is it wrong he gets MORE attractive the muddier and bloodier he gets? Like, him pounding the crap out of Ramsay is basically my sexuality. (This show really has ruined me.)

• Also my sexuality: the Bolton banners coming down and the Stark banners going back up in Winterfell.

• RICKON DESERVED BETTER. But also why didn’t he ZIG ZAG.

• RIP Wun Wun.

• Ghost’s absence is especially conspicuous in this episode.

• I adore Sansa but I’ll never not be mad that she didn’t tell Jon about the Knights of the Vale.


• This is one of the best episodes of Game of Thrones ever.

Episode 10: “The Winds of Winter”

The Big Plot Stuff:

• In a packed Sept of Baelor, Loras confesses to his “crimes” and is branded with the mark of the Seven. Cersei, meanwhile, hasn’t shown up for her trial, and has the Mountain prevent Tommen from attending. Margaery realises Cersei is up to something and tries to warn the High Sparrow they must all escape, but he arrogantly doesn’t listen to her. Wildfire in the tunnels below the sept ignites and kills everyone in the sept (and under it – hi, Lancel). Byyyye Margaery, Loras, Mace, and the High Sparrow. Cersei also imprisons the Shame Nun and lets the Mountain have her (eek). Tommen is horrified by what his mother has done and dies by suicide. Cersei is crowned queen (can she just do that????) and Jaime arrives back in King’s Landing and seems very concerned.

• Sam arrives at the Citadel with Gilly and baby Sam. The Citadel is apparently behind the times because they still think Jeor Mormont is Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch.

• Davos confronts Melisandre about burning Shireen, and she admits the truth. Jon banishes Melisandre. Jon tells Sansa to take the “lord’s chamber” and Sansa apologises for not telling him about the Knights of the Vale (why didn’t she??!?!?!!). A white raven arrives at Winterfell from the Citadel, signifying the official beginning of winter.

• Olenna meets with Ellaria and the Sand Snakes in Dorne and they convince her to join their alliance with Daenerys (via Varys) to get revenge on Cersei.

• Dany dumps Daario so he doesn’t interfere with her plans to take Westeros, and names Tyrion the Hand of the Queen. Team Daenerys FINALLY depart Meereen and head towards Westeros.

• Arya disguises herself as a servant girl and cooks Walder Frey’s sons into a pie and serves it to him before killing him herself.

• Benjen leaves Bran and Meera at a weirwood tree near the Wall (the same one Sam and Jon said their vows in front of in Season 1). Bran enters another vision – continuing where he was cut off in the Tower of Joy flashback. He sees Lyanna Stark dying and asking Ned to protect her newborn son – Jon Snow (or, as we later learn, Aegon Targaryen).

• Littlefinger approaches Sansa in the Winterfell godswood and tells her he wants to sit on the Iron Throne with her by his side. He tries to kiss her like the creep he is, and she rejects him. It’s excellent.

• Lyanna Mormont shames all the Northern lords who refused the call of the Starks, and names Jon the King in the North. The Northern lords back her and Jon is declared king.

Symbolism, foreshadowing and callbacks:

• The Stark sigil is back in its rightful place over Winterfell in the credits.

• Cersei did say she would burn things to the ground in order to protect those she cared about – Tommen, but mainly herself.

• The circular contraptions hanging from the ceiling in the Citadel are a nod to the opening credits.

• Jon says “I’m not a Stark” which is a callback to what he says in Season 1, Episode 1, and also foreshadowing the BIG REVEAL later in the episode. Jon also tells Sansa “we can’t fight a war amongst ourselves”, which is exactly what Ned said to Arya back in Season 1. Finally, Jon says “father always promised, didn’t he”, which he means as a reference to “winter is coming” but connects to that BIG REVEAL and the promise Ned makes to Lyanna.

• Dany says “the best way to make alliances is with marriage” so it’s kind of weird this wasn’t explored more in Season 7. Maybe in Season 8 we’ll get a secret Targ wedding to make the inevitable Boatsex Baby legitimate?

• Tyrion tells Dany “he wasn’t the first to love you, and he won’t be the last” – I always thought this was foreshadowing Jon Snow, but because of the theory that Tyrion’s in love with Dany, I really noticed the sad way he looked at her in this scene. Uh oh.

• Also, it’s significant that Tyrion kneels for Dany when he refused to kneel for Joffrey – he’s finally found a leader he believes in. His “former cynic” line even calls back to his earlier discussion with Jorah about how Dany had converted him into a believer.

• The way Arya serves up the Frey pie and then kills Walder connects to the Rat King story Bran told in Season 3, about a man who was punished for betraying guests under his roof. Also, in slitting Frey’s throat, she completes the pattern of the perpetrators of the Red Wedding being killed in the way their victims died (as Tywin was shot with a crossbow like Grey Wind and Roose was stabbed like Robb).

• Theon watches a flag turn from being black and blank to flipping to reveal the Greyjoy sigil. It’s symbolic of his own journey through Season 6.

• Sansa rejecting Littlefinger’s kiss is a nice contrast to the last time he successfully tried to kiss her. She has a lot more power now and doesn’t trust him any longer.

• The way the camera lingers on Ned placing Ser Arthur Dayne’s bloody sword near the bed where Lyanna lies reinforces the idea that Jon is the Prince That Was Promised/Azor Ahai – “born beneath a bleeding star” (the sword, Dawn, was forged from a fallen star).

• The King in the North scene echoes the moment when Robb was also named King in the North – rather ominously. Also, in that scene Lyanna Mormont mentions to Lord Cerwyn that Ramsay flayed his father – we heard Ramsay talk about this in Season 5.

Stray observations:

• The music in Game of Thrones is always incredible, but in this episode it is next level. “Light of the Seven” is perhaps the best track in the show’s history – and I am also partial to “The Tower”.


• How is Arya able to use the faces if she never became “No One”?

• The transition between baby Jon and grown Jon, as the music swells, is one of my fave moments of the series.

• I know this season gets a lot of hate but I actually love it! Sure, there are several plot holes and everyone travels with jet packs, but overall it’s very satisfying.