GAME OF THRONES 6.08 Recap: Battle of Wills

brienne-pod

We open tonight’s GAME OF THRONES on that silly King’s Landing play taking place in Braavos, as the actress, Lady Crane, gives the performance of Joffrey’s death.  She exits the stage to her dressing room, but hears a thump in the back. She finds Arya on the floor clutching her bloody stomach. She takes Arya to her bed chamber and bandages her up. She tries to talk Arya into joining them as they move to Pentos, but Arya tells her that no one is safe around her, as long as the Waif is hunting her. She makes it sound like she doesn’t really plan on heading back to Westeros either. Lady Crane gives her milk-of-the-poppy to help her sleep.

The next day, Lady Crane visits Arya as she is sleeping. She retrieves a potion from the top of her shelf, as someone enters the room. A commotion happens and Arya awakens. She walks in to see Lady Crane dead on the floor. The Waif is there and gleefully threatens Arya. Arya jumps off the balcony and runs, with the Waif chasing her. Arya ducks in a building and seems to lose the Waif, but nope she finds her again. Arya takes a hard jump and fall, with her wounds opening and bleeding again, as the Waif watches with a smile on her face. Arya leaves bloody traces of her passage down dark, deserted alleyways, when the Waif finds her in a room by herself. Arya brings Needle out from under the covers and slices the candle, plunging the room into darkness.

At the House of Black and White, Jaqen sees blood and enters the hall of many faces. He finds the bloody face of the Waif in the wall. Arya comes up behind him, with Needle pointed at him. He says finally she is No One and she proclaims she is Arya Stark of Winterfell, she is going home. He smiles and nods at her.

Sandor

A group of four men, seemingly part of the Brotherhood without Banners, sit around a campfire joking around when Sandor comes purposely strolling into their camp, killing them all. Sandor wants to know where the one with the yellow cloak is, but the last man he killed refused to tell him.

Sandor comes across the Brotherhood without Banners, led by Thoros and Lord Beric Dondarrion. They have the three men Sandor has been looking for waiting to be hung. Thoros recognizes Sandor and they realize that they all want these men dead for the same reason: the slaughter of the village that Sandor was helping. They negotiate on who Sandor gets to kill and he chooses two of them. Sandor wants to chop them with his axe, but Thoros and Beric won’t let him, that they have to hang.

After the hanging, Sandor sits with them and eats. Thoros wants Sandor to join them. Beric tells Sandor that the white walkers are coming. Beric gives a rousing speech and Sandor looks like he might agree.

Meereen

Elsewhere in our GAME OF THRONES world, Tyrion and Varys stroll the streets of Meereen, Tyrion patting himself on the back that Meereen is starting to come together. It looks like Varys is going on an exhibition, a secret mission, but he mentions that they need friends in Westeros and they need ships. Tyrion sadly watches Varys walk away, telling him he will miss him.

Tyrion is drinking in the sitting room, with Missandei and Grey Worm. He encourages both of them to drink, toasting to Daenerys. Tyrion tries hard to build camaraderie with them, telling jokes and sharing stories of what he’d like to do one day. While they are laughing, drinking and telling jokes, bells start going off. Hundreds of boats are sailing in, with Missandei telling Tyrion that the masters have come for their property.

The boats in the harbor send cannonballs and fire onto Meereen. Grey Worm suggests they stay in the pyramid and wait for the masters to come to them. They hear a commotion above them. Daenerys enters through the door as we see Drogon flying in the sky.

Cersei

Qyburn enters Cersei’s chambers to inform her that several sparrows have been permitted into the Red Keep and that they are requesting to speak to Cersei. Lancel leads the lot of the sparrows, telling Cersei that the High Sparrow commands her to go to the sept to see him. She refuses him and the sparrows step forward with weapons raised, as does the Mountain. One of them try to stab the Mountain, but he quickly dispatches of him.

Cersei enters the throne room while everyone stares at her. She wants to stand by her son, but our current Hand of the King, Ser Kevan, blocks her and tells her she has to sit in the gallery. Tommen takes the chair and gives a speech. He announces that Ser Loras and Cersei’s trials will be held on the first day of the Festival of the Mother and, furthermore, that trial by combat will be forbidden through the Seven Kingdoms. Cersei’s face falls as she hears the news. Tommen states that Loras and Cersei will stand trial before seven septons as in the days of the earliest faith.

As Tommen leaves the throne room, Qyburn whispers to Cersei that the old rumor she had told Qyburn about, his little birds investigated and it is much more than a rumor.

Riverrun

Brienne and Pod are overlooking Riverrun, when she sees Jaime riding through the men below. Guards ride up and Brienne tells them to inform Jaime that she is there to see him.

In the campground, Bronn comes up on Pod and hassle him (pretty funny moment). Bronn and Pod have a bromance moment, with Bronn teaching Pod some fight moves.

In the tent, Brienne and Jaime are talking. They argue over who really has rights to Riverrun. Brienne proposes to let her talk to the Blackfish, to convince him to leave Riverrun with Sansa to take back Winterfell. Jaime gives his word that no one will be harmed if she can persuade him. Brienne gives Jaime back the sword he had given to her a while back. He tells her to keep it. Before walking away, she tells him that if the Blackfish doesn’t surrender, honor requires her to fight for Sansa’s kin, to fight him.

In the castle, the Blackfish is stubborn as usual and tells Brienne he’s told her no three times already. The Blackfish scoffs at abandoning the castle and states he does not know her. Brienne gets just as stubborn and makes the Blackfish read the letter Sansa had sent. Even though moved by Sansa’s words, the Blackfish says he will not surrender his home and he walks away. Brienne tells Pod to go find a Maester to send a raven to Sansa, telling her that Brienne failed.

Jaime goes to see Edmure.  After a long conversation, with Jaime telling him he’ll kill every last Tully to get back home to Cersei, we see Edmure walking across the plank alone towards the castle. He demands entry in since he is technically Lord of Riverrun. The Blackfish walks up to the guards and orders them to not let him in, it’s a trap. The guards won’t listen and order the drawbridge lowered.

Jaime sits on his horse, with one of the Frey brothers telling Jaime if he is wrong, they’ve just surrendered their most valuable prisoner. When Edmure enters, he and the Blackfish share a look before Edmure goes up to the top to tell the guards to lay down their arms and lower the bridge. Jaime rides in with his forces. Edmure orders his men to find the Blackfish, put him in irons and hand him over to the Freys.

In the basement, Brienne and Pod are escaping in a boat, led by the Blackfish. He won’t leave with them, stating he ran during the Red Wedding, but won’t run again.

A guard tells Jaime that they found the Blackfish, but that he died fighting. Jaime watches as he sees the boat with Brienne and Pod going down the river, with Brienne and Jaime sharing that tortured look, waving goodbye to each other.

My Thoughts

It is truly all culminating towards an epic last two episodes. My biggest takeaway from tonight was: what was Cersei and Qyburn talking about? What old rumor had she had him looking into? It can’t be good. Also, someone just needs to kick some sense into Edmure. I could only shake my head at that whole scene. I truly hope the Blackfish isn’t really dead; they never showed his body so it’s possible.

I am so looking forward to the next episode of GAME OF THRONES on June 19th at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on HBO and HBO Canada.

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