I’m a LITTLE bit behind in Game of Thrones, and this is actually the last episode I’ve seen. I may have caught a glimpse of a trailer for last week’s though and OMG. But, yes, cast your mind back Some Weeks Ago to an episode that couldn’t help but be a little bit of a comedown after all that Hold The Door magnificence:
First off, so much hurrah at Arya doing something that doesn’t involve getting hit with sticks! And how marvellous that compassion won out (and I assume it wasn’t coincidence that the woman she was supposed to kill bore more than a little resemblance to her mother) and she made a choice that gave me feelings of hope and joy. I fully expect something dreadful to happen, of course, but the general grimness of Arya’s story does make even the glimmerings of light sparkle like crazy.
Benjen! I totally cheatingly called it before we saw his face because forever ago I read an Internet theory about how a certain character in the book was Benjen Stark. And it was a little cheering, even if it lacked serious emotional resonance cause it’s been how long since he ‘died’? And he was only in it for about fifteen seconds anyway. Still, two happy things in the same episode, go show! Also, nice to see Tobias Menzies again, maybe he will get some lines next week?
And maybe three happy things? Marjaery has scenes again, yay! And I ASSUME that this alliance with the High Sparrow was her marvellously cunning plan for getting out of prison and keeping her queenly mystique intact in order ro exact VENGEFUL VENGEANCE when she realised that Diana Rigg had failed her (which did stretch my suspension of disbelief a bit – Diana Rigg would never fail anyone.)
Dany’s speech was QUITE GOOD as she was on a DRAGON, but I’m relatively certain we’ve had that particular story beat once or twice per season before. It sounds really extra convincing this time (dragon!) and lots of STUFF has happened this season so I’m optimistic that the final ep is them setting off or landing, and I’m not Charlie Brown with the football, no.
My favourite part though was actually Sam’s story. I’m not a great fan of Sam – I think the actor’s smashing, but the character makes me argh in a “I do not like” rather than a “this is badly written” kind of way. Anyway, Sam, and his family. And his father, who is an awful awful person, BUT in what I thought was an extremely neat thing, especially for a bit part, his awfulness is pretty nuanced. He and his wife look to have one of the better marriages in Westeros: she feels confident and secure enough in her position to challenge him pretty directly on his behaviour at dinner and walks out, and there’s no anger from him to her for it – in fact, his first response after she’s gone is to tell his son how much he respects her. And there’s no question of him *not* taking the baby and Gilly and looking after them, he’s quite willing to do that. BUT he really hates his son. In a very nasty, vicious way. And the non-horrible bits don’t make the horrible bits okay. But it’s a much more interesting sort of nastiness than the Boltons or Lord Frey. And has an ugly knot of realism in it: ghastly people are generally not ghastly to *everyone*. And that is how we get the stories about how x would never do a thing like that, he was so nice to me etc.
All right, onwards! Got to catch up before Monday!