We’re headed down the rabbit hole again, friends! And this time, there’s no map.
I’ll be doing the non-book reader Game of Thrones recaps again, with the triumphant Genevieve Burgess, fresh back from her intellectual victories over Wildlings at Con of Thrones, handling the book-reader version. I don’t envy her job. The book readers join us in rudderless exhilaration this season.
Those poor bastards. I don’t know if they can handle it.
For my part, I have successfully avoided any spoilers heading into season 7. That’s right! I haven’t seen a cast photo or a trailer or anything. I know for some recappers, they crave the glimpse of beats to come, but I’d rather just see it fresh.
To that end, let’s take a moment to remember where we were when we traipsed off the edge of that plank and into the lonely, Throne-free abyss when we bid adieu to Westeros.
The last thing I remember is this:
Remember that? God, were we ever that young?
Dany and her goon squad are headed toward Westeros. Finally! Daenerys Stormborn! Off to seek her destiny in the Seven Kingdoms! With a fucking GIGANTIC army and navy and three fully grown (I think?) dragons.
And of course, Theon’s replacement cock-belt.
I will never not notice that thing. I couldn’t do anything in that belt. I couldn’t cook dinner. I couldn’t mow the lawn. I couldn’t walk to the mailbox. That belt is on par with being flayed.
Whither Khaleesi goeth, The Belted One doth follow.
That said, did anyone else get a little pitter-patter of emotion seeing Yara Greyjoy again? I didn’t know I had a thing for her, but then I saw her and, I don’t know. Something.
Waiting for Dany’s flotilla in King’s Landing is the newly crowned Queen of the Andals and the First Men, Cercei Lannister. You might remember her from such hits as Bro-bangin’, Shame walkin’ and of course, this:
Oh, the High Sparrow, you arrogant, hubristic prick, you. Like Icarus, you flew too close to the sun and Cersei made you pay. Now she sits on the throne her father coveted so much. Albeit with more wine. Like a fuckton more wine.
Cersei Lannister. Queen of the rednecks. She’s all ’bout the drinkin’ and the blowin’ shit up.
Let us not forget that the Little Birds, (Varys’ sweet spy-children that Qyburn turned into vicious killers), were a key part of this plan to make the Great Sept go boom.
Basically, when they handed out the Little Bird orders, they were like okay every Little Bird is going to shiv Grand Maester Pycelle. Every one of them except one. This dude: Arthur. That’s the character’s name. Arthur.
This is not your grandad’s Arthur, friends.
The Little Bird Arthur had a multi-step mission, so important to the rise of Cersei that I made an infographic to break it down.
He achieved every step of the plan. By himself. WHAT AN ABSOLUTE ROGUE.
Listen, I know a lot came together for Jon and Dany, but this dude? What is he? Seven years old? Nine? This kid is the definition of clutch. They should do an ESPN 30 for 30 on this kid. It’s because of his skill and ability that the first thing Jaime Lannister sees upon his return to King’s Landing is the smoking corpse of the Great Sept.
Remember that when we last saw Jaime Lannister, who is so amazing when he’s with Brienne and so useless when he’s with Cersei, he was mouthing off to Walder Frey. «If we have to come take back the Riverlands every time you lose it, why do we need you?»
Daaaamn. You go, Jaime boyeeee!
Jaime stumbles in during Cersei’s coronation and he’s like WHA? And she’s like HRM. And he’s like WHERE’S OUR SON? And she’s like I’M DE BAUCE NOW.
I have watched this scene several times, with Jaime and Cersei looking at each other and for the life of me I can’t figure out what’s going on. My gut tells me that he’s seeing her for the demon she is, and she’s kind of like «yeah, I sent you away so I could kill everyone.» But I’m not sure how it’s going to play out this season. Part of me really hopes Jaime wakes up. Actually, all of me hopes that.
That’s all well and good, but Kevan Lannister, that absolute useless scrotum, got burned up in the ‘splosion. Daenerys is coming and hell’s coming with her in the form of three dragons, and what does Cersei have to fight them with?
Last I checked this wasn’t Dale and The Mountain doesn’t have a windlance.
What’s she going to do? Have Qyburn whip up another four thousand barrels of wyldfire? I mean wyldice? I don’t think so! Is she going to marry Euron Greyjoy and get his fleet, built magically out of trees on the virtually tree-less Iron Isles?
Like I said, I haven’t seen the trailers for this season, but with a force of that size, taking King’s Landing is academic. Not certain where the drama there is going to come from. Maybe from the fact that when they arrive in Blackwater Bay, Gendry will still be rowing.
Anyhoo…when we left Walder Frey he was being a douche, like usual.
Then of course, Argus Filch is fed his sons in what looks to be a marvelous example of a traditional Scottish meat pie that Mel and Sue would find whimsical.
Aaaaaand then he’s vented from ear to ear by this dare-I-say adorable Stark assassin. Awya Stark. Or Ai-ya Stark. I wish there was a LOT more R in that name.
Aiya Stark. A girl who washed dead bodies for like six weeks, then got hit by a staff for two days, and somehow knows how to carve up dudes three times her size, fricassee them in a garlic basil sauce, and also change her face like John Travolta in Face Off.
She was like «I got accepted to grad school in murder» and then we find out that it wasn’t grad school proper, it was just one of those accelerated certificate courses, but it did the trick, didn’t it?
A girl is no one. A girl is someone. A girl is like a day’s ride from Winterfell.
Farther North, Ramsay Bolton has been turned to screaming kibble for his own hounds. Let’s pour one out for the inspired performance of Iwan Rheon, who brought the thunder and misery every week. Like a champ. Remember Sansa smiling as she walked away? Ramsay screaming in the background?
That was nice.
Sansa is finally free. Ish. There was some question as to which Stark would gain the support of the people. You’ll remember that Littlefinger tried to nudge her toward the top of the food chain. He was like «I want to sit on the Iron Throne with you by my side» and then he leaned in to kiss her.
You’ll remember in the post battle moot, the greatest child-actor of all time gave a tremendous speech that ushered Jon Snow into power as Kingindanorf. She doesn’t care if he’s a bastard. Ned Stark’s blood flows in his veins.
Because, as we found out through Bran’s Three-eyed Raven Wargvision, Jon Snow is the son of Ned’s younger sister Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryan. Not only is Winter Coming for Jon Snow, but so is Fire and Blood. Goddamn he was a cute baby.
So Sansa is in Winterfell with Jon. Littlefinger has ‘declared for the Starks’ but he’s always a danger. The North is united. The Boltons are destroyed. The Red Wedding is avenged. And more people bought House Mormont swag online than anyone ever thought possible.
The Red Woman has been banished by Jon Snow. Sent south for the murder of Shireen Baratheon. The Onion Knight, Ser Davos Seaworth warned her that if she ever returned he’d execute her himself. Jon chooses to let her live, in case they have a need of her later.
Why would he have a need of her?
Ohhhhh yeah! Remember this fucking blue-eyed charmer marching with the army of the dead? Yeah. He’s fo real.
UGH. I’m not one to body shame, but that dude is fucking hard to look at. It’s like HOW MUCH DID YOU EXFOLIATE, BRUH? Jesus. Maybe tap a little Creme de Corps on those cheekbones before your next battle. I’m gonna yack here.
Still, I’d rather look at him than either of my two LEAST favorite faces in the series.
The original Daario.
And Smalljon Umber.
Fucking barf. Both of them. Yech.
But The Night’s King isn’t the only one North of the Wall. Benjen is there. Dead Benjen. Deadjen.
He’s still on the side of the living, though. He saved Bran and Meera Reed from White Walkers, but they’re still not out of danger. We’ve heard a lot of suggestion that Meera Reed is a badass. I’d sure like to see that this coming season. Right now she has the same level of Spartan spearmanship as fucking Gilly.
Remember Gilly? Kraster’s daughter? Beloved of Samwise, er…sorry SamWELL Tarley? She’s in the waiting room of the great library of The Citadel while Sam is inside, drooling. Have you ever held a baby and waited? Gen wrote a great piece about how time passes in GOT but I promise that time is passing slower for Gilly than anyone else because SHE’S HOLDING A BABY.
No diaper bag in sight. No stroller. No wipes. At least if Sam had checked her into a motel she’d have a place to crash for a bit and kick up her dogs, but noooooo. Isn’t that just like a man to go traipsing through the chained papyrus scrolls and leave her holding the proverbial bag? You’re supposed to be better than that, Sam! Shame! Shame!
Who have I forgotten?
Brienne is somewhere in the Riverlands with Pod, last we saw her.
Tyrion, you may remember, had someone truly believe in him and trust him and value his intelligence for once. Oh, and yeah, she made him her Hand. I will never not get emotional watching this. Holy fuck it’s beautiful.
When we last see Tyrion, he’s standing on the deck of Dany’s flagship as she flexes her neck tendons.
Daario Naharis is left behind, ultimately failing in his quest to sleep his way to the top. Slaver’s Bay has been renamed to the Bay of Dragons.
And Winter has officially come, according to the crack meteorologists of Westeros. So there’s that.
Ser Jorah is turning into a Rodin sculpture somewhere.
The Hound is hanging with the Brotherhood somewhere, but he’s alive.
Tormund is at Winterfell with Jon.
The Queen of Thorns and Varys were both seen last in Dorne, but y’know…we don’t really speak of Dorne, lest we get more Sand Snakes fight sequences. But all of them, and Ellaria Sand, who has about as much claim to the Dornish throne as I do, are all ostensibly either part of the great invasion fleet, or at least supporting it.
Bronn was last seen riding into King’s Landing with Jaime.
I think that’s it!
If I’ve forgotten anyone, I’m sure the comment section will blow up like The Hound on a chicken rampage.
I can’t wait to see how Jon Snoo handles being the Kingindanorf!
Have a great time joining the watch on Sunday night, everyone, and of course, Fuck Olly.
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