Before you start reading, this post is dark and full of spoilers!!! Close it and come back after you have seen the episode if you don’t want to see anything before watching!
Well everyone, it’s finally back! We are officially into the final season of Game of Thrones. Last night’s season opener was a great setting up episode, reminding us where everybody is and laying the groundwork for the epic battles to come. The episode featured Daenerys and her dragons arriving at Winterfell, Jon getting official confirmation of his real identity, Arya having not one, but three big reunions and Bran having an awkward run in with the man who put him in a wheelchair many moons ago. But the episode had even more packed into it than that. Read on for 6 more talking points from this weeks episode…
Daenerys threatens Sansa
One of the best parts about this episode was seeing the frosty relationship between Sansa and Daenerys. Both women started out as nothing more than pawns to be beaten, raped and passed around, and now find themselves in positions of power and leadership. Neither of them was going to trust and warm to the other straight away, but there were some interesting comments that I think signals at Daenerys overwhelming thirst for absolute power, and her possible decent into madness in pursuit of it.
Did you catch the threats made toward Sansa? When she asks what do dragons eat, Daenerys replied slowly “whatever they please” while turning to face Sansa. Later, in a conversation with Jon, she remarks that Sansa doesn’t have to like her but she is “her queen. If she can’t respect me…”. Daenerys doesn’t finish the point, but the implication is clear…Sansa must toe the line, or she will go the way the Tarly’s did, up in flames.
If the pair had known each other for a while you could almost understand Daenerys’ thinking, but the woman has just met Sansa and is supposed to be trying to gain her support, not throwing threats her way. Could it be a sign of Daenerys being driven mad with power like her father?
Daenerys meets Sam
Another interesting moment in this series opener came when Daenerys finally meets Sam Tarly. She’s overjoyed to meet the man who saved Ser Jorah from Greyscale, and even offers him a handsome reward of a high standing within the Citadel once she claims the throne. But things turn sour when Daenerys realises who Sam is, and that she not too long ago burned his father and brother for treason. It’s an interesting moment, in that Daenerys most definitely doesn’t regret what she did, but also seems sad for the pain it causes Sam. On top of that, Sam’s father and brother weren’t always very nice to him but they were his flesh and blood. It’s quite telling that he goes straight to Jon to inform him that he is actually Rhaegar Targaryen, and the true heir to the throne. Sam may not have it in him to avenge his family by killing her, but he sure as hell will do whatever he can to stop Daenerys becoming Queen.
So, yesterday I shared 9 theories for this season of GOT before the premiere, and for one of them at least I was pretty wide of the mark. I was certain that there would be a big battle between Theon and Euron over Yara, but in actual fact, Theon and a few good soldiers made short work of the rescue while Euron was off banging Cersei. I was certain Theon would lay down his life for Yara, but it’s now taken a turn I didn’t expect, but actually makes perfect sense.
Theon is going to return to Winterfell to help in the fight there, and Yara makes the smart move of reclaiming the Iron Islands while Euron is busy with Cersei and the Golden Company. Initially I was kind of pissed because it appeared that Yara was going to be written out for the remainder of the series, and in my opinion she is a lot more interesting to watch than Theon.
But her plan makes perfect sense….go back and reclaim her home and also provide a place of refuge for everyone else if Winterfell should fall in the coming battle with the Army of the Dead (which it will), because as we know, the White Walkers can’t cross water, which they would need to do to get to the islands!
The Night King’s message
The Night King left a bone chilling message with the remains of the Umbers at Last Hearth on his way to Winterfell in this episode. But when you look closer, the message is even scarier.
The Night King is supposed to have lived for thousands of years away from the world of men, and has just crossed through the Wall into Westeros. He kills little Ned Umber, the lord of his house, and surrounds him with the severed body parts of the rest of his family. But, how would the Night King know that Ned was the lord of the house, and know to display him above all others to send a message?
If the Night King knows who the lord of House Umber is, could it also mean that he knows who the other lords and ladies of Westeros are too, and is on a mission to wipe all of them out? Or could it mean that he and Bran Stark are connected? After all, as the Three-Eyed Raven, Bran now appears to know everyone and everything that happens to them.
Finally, when Ned Umber’s body was set on fire and the flaming pattern emerged on the wall, I was reminded of something that Daenerys said back in season 5:
“Lannister, Targaryen, Baratheon, Stark, Tyrell. They’re all just spokes on a wheel. This one’s on top, then that one’s on top. And on and on it spins, crushing those on the ground. I’m not going to stop the wheel. I’m going to break the wheel.”
Is it just me, or do those burning limbs kind of look like spokes of a wheel? Could there be a connection between the Night King and Daenerys?
Jon dismisses Sansa yet again
Everybody loves Jon, that’s a given. But he kind of pissed me off this episode. Daenerys rocks up to Winterfell and expects everybody to bow to her, and he basically alludes to Sansa being a bit of a know-it-all bitch in a conversation with Arya (who checks him, which I liked. Arya and Sansa have always had their squabbles but the loyalty to her sister is always there) just because she didn’t immediately kiss the feet of his new girlfriend (also aunt, but that’s another issue).
It’s just the latest in a series of Jon dismissing Sansa. When they were preparing for battle with Ramsey, he didn’t even bother to consult the woman who had been living with him about how they might proceed in fighting him. He didn’t listen to her when she said that Ramsey would use Rickon to draw Jon out and divert him from his battle plan, and only for she was able to convince the Knights of the Vale to ride to Winterfell, they would have lost the battle. Then, when Jon was summoned to Dragonstone to bend the knee to Daenerys, she urged him to remain in the north or risk angering his supporters. He went to Dragonstone, bent the knee, gave up the North and expected everyone to fall in line without consultation, and now all the northern lords and ladies are seriously pissed, proving her right again.
It’s true for Tyrion when he said in this episode that everyone underestimated Sansa, and Jon seems to do it more than anyone. Tyrion also noted that most of the people that underestimated Sansa are now dead, so maybe Jon should start listening to her more!
Cersei beds Euron
As we know, Cersei told Euron she would wed and bed him once the war was won. She went back on this unexpectedly during this episode and slept with him, which leaves a few questions. Is Cersei now realising that Euron is her only ally after Jamie left her to ride north and fight the dead? Or is she using the advice she gave Sansa way back in season 2 during the Battle of Blackwater Bay:
“Tears aren’t a woman’s only weapon. The best one is between your legs. Learn how to use it”
In my opinion, Cersei is only stringing Euron along until she can find a way to get rid of him!
Did you enjoy the season premiere? What were your favourite moments? Let me know below!