Game of Thrones Post-Mortem of “A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms”

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Game of Thrones knocked it out of the park last night with a character-centric episode designed to give us all the feels! There were so many emotional moments, like Jaime’s controversial arrival at Winterfell, his knighting of Brienne, Pod’s lovely singing(!), and Jon’s difficult revelation to Daenerys to name a few. It allowed us to reconnect with the people we’ve grown to know and love over the past eight seasons – right before they rip our hearts out next week. Before that happens, however, let’s dig into this episode’s interviews and videos!

Entertainment Weekly brings us a wonderful chat with episode writer Bryan Cogman, who states, “This episode is really a love letter to the characters. With most of our battles you get about 15 minutes of calm-before-the-storm with the characters participating in that battle taking stock of where they are in their lives before the dam breaks. This is an entire episode of that so that episode 3 can hit the ground running.”

Cogman discusses Jaime’s decision to knight Brienne, saying, “Jaime has been a knight of the Seven Kingdoms his whole life, but he’s finally becoming the knight he’s been chasing.” For the actual knighting, they “wanted to take the audience by surprise. It’s not a ceremonial scene on a cliff at sunset with billowing capes…It’s a moment of grace and beauty in the middle of a nightmare and the main reason I wanted to write this episode. The episode’s title, ‘A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms,’ refers to both Jaime and Brienne.” I’m not crying, you’re crying!

EW notes that Gwendoline Christie named this scene as the one she takes the most pride in, out of all eight seasons. “I thought about it so much and what it means to me conceptually. It’s so emotional for the character to get something she wants and to be acknowledged.” We know Benioff and Weiss gave all the actors a character storyboard as a parting gift, and that Christie’s was from season eight. I really hope this is the scene she received.

Read more from Cogman about Arya and Gendry’s big moment, Jon’s parentage reveal, and more at EW.

Speaking of Gendry and Arya (or should I say Gendarya now?), Maisie Williams and Joe Dempsie tell EW their own thoughts on their big scene. Williams confesses that she initially thought it was a prank, but that when she discovered it was really happening, she was given full control over how much of her body she wanted to show. She also stresses that the scene was respectful, but also strange. “No one wants to make you feel uncomfortable which kind of makes you feel more uncomfortable, because no one wants to look at anything that they shouldn’t look at, which in turn makes you feel like you look awful…You want people to act more normal.”

It was similarly awkward for Dempsie, who admits, “It’s obviously slightly strange for me because I’ve known Maisie since she was 11, 12 years old. At the same time, I don’t want to be patronizing toward Maisie — she’s a 20-year-old woman. So we just had a lot of fun with it.” Judging by the fan reactions it was strange for many people, but if anyone deserves some happiness, it’s Arya.

Williams concurs. “David and Dan were like, ‘It’s the end of the world, what else would you have her do?’ This maybe is a moment where Arya accepts death tomorrow, which she never does — ‘Not Today.’ So it was that moment where she says, ‘We’re probably going to die tomorrow, I want to know what this feels like before that happens.’ It’s interesting to see Arya be a bit more human, speak more normally about things people are scared of.” Here’s hoping she and Gendry survive long enough to explore their relationship further!

Helen Sloan - HBO (1)

One relationship that’s not heading in a positive direction is that of Jon and Daenerys. Jon finally told her the truth of his parentage, and Dany didn’t take it well. This could be reasonably expected given the situation, but many fans have a much less charitable view of her reaction. In an interview with EW, however, Emilia Clarke defends her character’s response to the news.

“The related thing, to her, is so normal. She could have easily married her brother. It’s not a thing. It’s a thing for Jon, but let’s just forget about that. The main thing is we’re up for the same promotion and I’ve been working for it for my entire existence.” She adds, “This is my whole existence, since birth! Dany literally was brought into this world going: RUN! These f—ers [in Westeros] have f—ed everything up. Now it’s, ‘You’re our only hope.’ There’s so much she’s taken on in her duty in life to rectify. There’s so much she’s seen and witnessed and been through and lost and suffered and hurt to get here…and Jon doesn’t even want it!”

It’s interesting that Clarke notes that “the related thing” is an issue for Jon, since we don’t see that in the episode. Perhaps it will come up later? I do appreciate her take on Daenerys considering the backlash the character has received, and…she’s not wrong. Assuming they survive the battle for Winterfell (which, of course they will), they will need to work out their problems and present a united front to keep their fragile alliance together.

Podrick Payne

One of the biggest highlights of the episode – especially for book readers – was Podrick’s beautiful and haunting rendition of “Jenny’s Song.” Daniel Portman admits to Esquire that he was completely unprepared for it, however. “They just put it in the script and they didn’t really tell me. I was terrified to be singing in front of all these people with this camera in my face. And something like a billion people have seen the first episode. So thinking about that many people seeing me singing was terrifying.” Don’t worry Daniel – we all saw, and we all loved it!

Portman also shares why he believes fans have such an attachment to his character, saying, ‘It’s the innocence, it’s the honesty and the sweetness in a world where there isn’t a lot of that. There’s a lot of Machiavellian tactics and underhandedness, and to have a guy who is none of those things and is just as honest to the core and selfless and loyal – people like when they see something good happening to him, you know?” I couldn’t have said it better. If Pod dies, we riot!

The entire interview is well worth a read, so check it out at Esquire.

Florence and the Machine

Finally, The New York Times speaks to Florence and the Machine frontwoman Florence Welch about her band’s version of “Jenny’s Song” that played over the episode’s end credits. When showrunners Benioff and Weiss approached her with the song, “They just had a simple, stripped back, lilting melody,” Welch reveals. “The notes of it sounded like a Celtic folk song to me. I thought it was really beautiful. I love the idea of dancing with ghosts and never wanting to leave.That totally makes sense to me. I feel like I do that every night on stage.”

“I worked with Thomas Bartlett on ‘High as Hope,’ and he’s a piano genius. He helped formulate the chords, and then I kind of added my choir, my hellish soprano. We just tried to keep within the Game of Thrones world, to retain the ghostliness of it.” I’d say mission accomplished.

Welch admits she wasn’t given any backstory about the song’s importance at the time, which she believes was for the best. “What I wanted to do with this song was keep it as sparse as possible. It does get a bit more rousing at the end, but I really wanted to retain the simplicity of the melody and the lyrics that they sent me, because I found them so moving. If I had known the history of the song, I would have been like, ‘[Expletive], we need fanfares, and you’re going to have to get a dragon on here somehow.’ I might have — as I can do sometimes — overblown it.”

Read the rest here.


In this week’s “Inside the Episode,” David Benioff and Dan Weiss talk Jaime’s trial, Brienne becoming an knight, Jenny’s Song, and more.

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Isaac Hempstead Wright, and Gwendoline Christie dissect Jaime’s arrival at Winterfell (this video is from the HBO website and can only be viewed in the United States).

Several cast members share their thoughts on the characters’ last night in Winterfell before the battle.

“The Game Revealed” gives us a detailed look at Winterfell’s expansion and the arsenal of dragonglass weapons, and cast and crew discuss key moments from the episode.

If you missed next Sunday’s preview, check it out below!

64 responses

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    1. My only complaint about this episode goes back to a decision from season 5.

      Would have been nice to have Barristan Selmy there for Jon and Daenerys. But I digress.

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    2. Thanks for the postmortem Vanessa!
      It’s interesting that Clarke notes that “the related thing” is an issue for Jon, since we don’t see that in the episode. Perhaps it will come up later?

      I thought this was something probably written in the script because in the same EW article, Cogman explains:
      “What really upsets Jon is that he’s a blood relative to the woman he’s in love with. In the crypt, Jon is taken aback when essentially the first thing she says is acknowledging that he has a claim to the Iron Throne. And Jon’s immediate concern is the fact that that’s her immediate concern.”

      Also I love how Gendry is instinctively frightened of Arya and what she’s been through (as he should be) 😂:
      “There are so many things Gendry doesn’t understand about Arya. They’re having this nice flirtation and have this own shared history they draw upon but she’s very different from the Arya he used to know. There’s an attraction for him, but she’s also a bit scary too.”

      My favourite was watching reactions to this scene – Leslie Jones from SNL and the Normies. We all saw Maisie/Arya grow up in this show so it was hilarious to me to watch the mixed and confused reactions haha. I personally loved it and a rare moment for a GoT female character to express her own agency in choosing a partner.

      I love Gwen’s utter understanding of Brienne, and how she portrays her. She truly does understand Brienne’s experiences with men in the past – in Tarth, and when travelling around Westeros and how she has now found someone who sees her for who she is and is in awe of it and in turn, Brienne does not know how to process that.

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    3. This episode was beautiful and it is exactly what we needed before the shit hits the fan in the next episode. With all of the Summerhall/ Dunk and Egg references, I’m little afraid for Brienne’s safety.

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    4. Hmmm… looking at those HBO videos I realized that there’s some odd character and background relationships during the interviews… Jamie is interviewed on-set at what looks like Winterfell’s great hall, but Bran’s setting is what appears to be the Dragonpit? Interesting…

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    5. Looking at the “The Last Night” video in particular was interesting, given that some of the characters were wearing different costumes than they have so far this season and appear to be in a warmer place. I’m not going to count on anything but I’m hoping desperately that this means they’ll survive the upcoming battle at least.

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    6. Dark Sister:

      I love Gwen’s utter understanding of Brienne, and how she portrays her. She truly does understand Brienne’s experiences with men in the past – in Tarth, and when travelling around Westeros and how she has now found someone who sees her for who she is and is in awe of it and in turn, Brienne does not know how to process that.

      Yes. So much this.
      During that knighting scene, her hesitation, as if she were waiting for the punchline, and having Jaime give her the honor she’s deserved for years. It was all so perfectly done.

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    7. The Many-Faced Goddess,

      I think it is most likely a spoiler on who survives the next episode. Characters who are in a warmer climate in these videos:

      Sam,Arya,Gendry,Brienne,Davos, and Jaime(he is actually on the Kingslanding set).

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    8. Tyrion Pimpslap:
      The Many-Faced Goddess,

      I think it is most likely a spoiler on who survives the next episode. Characters who are in a warmer climate in these videos:

      I want to be optimistic, I really do… I just have a hard time believing HBO would drop those kind of broad hints, considering how closely they’ve guarded everything regarding this season. It might be something else entirely, like when the actors were doing various promos and photo shoots for the show pre-season.

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    9. Must have done some of those interviews during or after filming 803. Beric is covered in blood, Pod’s face looks like he’s been in a fight and Gendry’s top has slashes in it.

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    10. RG: Yes. So much this.
      During that knighting scene, her hesitation, as if she were waiting for the punchline, and having Jaime give her the honor she’s deserved for years. It was all so perfectly done.

      Ugh YES YES. I know they don’t get into it too deep in the show but I remarked to my husband last night when Brienne finally knelt, that from the time Jaime offered to knight her, she must have flashed back to all the awful boys on Tarth and “Brienne the Beauty” and how she’s always been the butt of these kinds of boys/men’s jokes. But once she trusted Jaime enough to kneel, the way she would have trusted Renly, and was in a room surrounded by the 2 Lannister brothers, the toughest Wildling warrior, the Hand to 2 would be kings and her beloved squire, she knew it was real – the respect, the knighthood, all of it. One of the most beautiful moments in all 8 seasons and that goofy grin that was pure Brienne, who never smiles like that, and not Gwen at all.

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    11. Something else I’ve noticed – it’s seems everyone has had their reunions and said their goodbyes except Sansa and the hound – which makes me believe he will come to her in episode 3 when they’re losing the battle and ask her to leave with him just like he did at Blackwater and this time maybe she does go with him after he tells her of theon’s death – there has to be a reason they haven’t met yet

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    12. Laura,

      Damn who was cutting onions in front of me when I read your comment.

      I feel so happy for brienne. The respect she seeks she got finally. And it’s also beautiful from jaimes pov. He started the show as the selfish brother of the queen. And this act is one of the selfless act he have done. He gained nothing. And brienne gained everything in that moment.

      And not only her fighting is validated that she wanted to be a knight. Another hurt for her is being healed. Maybe not by the person she wants but I think even when she doesn’t want thormund. I think she have a feeling of being wanted as a woman which in the past she was always made fun off. I think it’s everything in together that made this perfect for brienne. She feels she is worth it. Completely.

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    13. Dark Sister:

      “…. Also I love how Gendry is instinctively frightened of Arya and what she’s been through (as he should be) 😂:
      “There are so many things Gendry doesn’t understand about Arya. They’re having this nice flirtation and have this own shared history they draw upon but she’s very different from the Arya he used to know. There’s an attraction for him, but she’s also a bit scary too.”

      My favourite was watching reactions to this scene – Leslie Jones from SNL and the Normies. We all saw Maisie/Arya grow up in this show so it was hilarious to me to watch the mixed and confused reactions haha. I personally loved it and a rare moment for a GoT female character to express her own agency in choosing a partner.”

      I “personally loved it” too. I’ve got to say, that scene took me by surprise – in a nice way. As an Arya SuperFanBoy, I’ve enjoyed watching Maisie Williams’s scene-stealing portrayal of Arya Super Ninja Assassin Warrior Princess (™️ talvikorppi 2018) over the past 68 episodes. This was different. And wonderful.

      I think this is the first time we’ve seen Maisie Williams play Arya as an alluring, beautiful, and self-confident young woman in a romantic setting. Her dialogue delivery and inflection were pitch perfect.

      I didn’t sense that Gendry was frightened or found her scary, as much as I sensed that Arya had the verbal upper hand and had him on his heels, so to speak. Gendry’s attraction was apparent – as was his nervousness. And she looked gorgeous.*

      What impressed me most was how Arya’s rapid-fire interrogation cut right through Gendry’s equivocation. She was no shrinking violet. Even in the “choreography” of the scene, the woman took the lead and controlled the conversation. That was refreshing. (I’m kind of fed up with “love” scenes where the guy is (over-) aggressive and “overcomes” the woman’s affected evasiveness or feigned resistance. I prefer when a woman shows enthusiastic interest so the guy doesn’t feel the need to act like a hyperactive chimpanzee to gauge her interest.) Anyway….

      Beyond turning the tables on the usual man-woman dynamic, there was something more to Arya’s inquisition of Gendry about his history – and pinning him down on his vague responses – that reminded me of something I saw on HBO several years ago but I couldn’t quite place it – until today:

      Now I’m not saying the characters are anything alike. Still, Arya’s no-nonsense, bullsh*t-defusing questioning and guiding the trajectory of the conversation brought to mind the performance by Linda Fiorentino as Bridget in a scene from “The Last Seduction” (1994), one of my favorite guilty pleasure movies. I included two links to the scene below. A guy tries to come on to Bridget in a bar after buying her a drink, figuring a few pickup lines and boasts will show he’s assertive.

      Then Bridget’s no-nonsense interrogation turns the tables…

      (at 1:23 to end of the scene):

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6UrlgpATKU

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mIl4pxMh4M

      * By the way, the next time some clueless casting director or dumbbell critic suggests that Maisie Williams doesn’t have the stereotypical long-legged, willowy blonde look to play a romantic lead, he or she should watch the scene from S8e2.

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    14. Kevin1989,

      Laura,

      RG,

      Absolutely. That’s what made the entire scene so genuinely delightful. The sense of respect and belonging that she feels and Gwendoline conveys in that moment, surrounded by those people, was so richly deserved in terms of character and storytelling.

      I love the fact that they had her look to Podrick, the only person she has told the story of her humiliation at the hands of the boys on Tarth, I believe, for reassurance before accepting. That was a nice detail, which adds to their relationship as well.

      Wonderful scene in every respect.

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    15. Dark Sister:

      I thought this was something probably written in the script because in the same EW article, Cogman explains:
      “What really upsets Jon is that he’s a blood relative to the woman he’s in love with. In the crypt, Jon is taken aback when essentially the first thing she says is acknowledging that he has a claim to the Iron Throne. And Jon’s immediate concern is the fact that that’s her immediate concern.”

      Its getting very frustrating with this kind of interviews..last week it was jhon Bradley and now it’s Bryan cogman..

      It’s like we didn’t see what was Jon’s initial reaction to the news….haven’t we all in the fandom were discussing how jon has not yet realised that he is related with dany. .

      Suddenly it’s only dany that has not realised and job gets shocked about it..

      They are trying to push up this narrative like they did in the previous seasons with Sansa but it’s different in the screen..

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    16. Well I’ll be….Ten Bears has accepted (???) Gendry. 🤪😆 It DOES help that he appears to have settled down a bit on the caffeine this season, right Clovis?

      Anyhoo, the Arya/Gendry scene was awesome, and Gendry’s face says a thousand words all at once. Especially when she threw those spearheads. And well, Arya has lent a new meaning to “when the gloves come off”. ❤

      Brienne, sigh. Her ingrained “waiting for the other shoe to drop” hesitation breaks my heart every time. Her brief exchanged glances with Pod…and how Jaime looks at her when she isn’t looking. Blast them all for making me love Jaime now. And telling Tormund she was glad he was here…er…that he made it here…the LOOK on his face. 😂 Davos’ expressions too.

      I thought that Dany had only been going for the ‘promotion’ since Season 2, but maybe she means also as queen alongside Viserys. Huh. Jorah stumping for Tyrion, Jaime and Tyrion’s camaraderie, and Tyrion being more like the Tyrion of old, made me so happy.

      I feel sad for Sandor. He and Jorah have always been my 2 favourites, and while Jorah has always had an accepting attitude, Sandor seems a little thrown to the wind. I have to love the dynamic he has with Beric, though. Died 19 times. 😜

      I’ll be the one to say it – I really have never liked Florence + The Machine at all, and vastly prefer Daniel’s version. ❤

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    17. Pigeon,

      Yeah. Gendry & Arya blindsided me. Maisie was beautiful. How could Gendry resist – even if he wanted to? He wasn’t quite candid about “being with” Melisandre, but I guess he was embarrassed.

      Geez! What a woman! Grand slam for the Many-Faced Goddess. (I’d relish a play by play account by Arya to Sansa, though I know that won’t happen. It’s enough that Sophie saw the script before Maisie, and immediately got on the phone and told Maisie to read those script pages right away.)

      I really loved the Hound’s response to Arya asking him what he was doing there, e.g., when had he ever fought for anyone or anything other than himself, and he looked at her and replied [paraphrasing]:
      “I fought for you, didn’t I?”

      I kind of wish Beric hadn’t come along and interrupted that conversation – though I did enjoy Sandor threatening to launch Beric off the wall if he started in with another Lord of Light sermon.

      PS Serious question to follow…

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    18. Serious Question #1 – WF Crypts

      I’ve got a really bad feeling about the repeated references in S8e2 to the plan to use the WF Crypts as a fallout shelter for children and other noncombatants, and the dubious assumption that they’ll be safe there while the battle rages outside.

      3 reasons + 2 tinfoil. Please tell me if I’m wrong:

      (1) In S2e10, when Theon and his 20 Ironborn in WF were surrounded by 500 Northerners, Maester Luwin advised Theon to escape by using hidden passageways built into WF:

      Theon: “I won’t make it to the Wall. I won’t make it 10 feet past the Winterfell gates.”
      Luwin: “There are ways. Hidden passageways built so the Lords of Winterfell could escape. The road will be dangerous. But with a little luck….”
      [More complete excerpt below]*

      There may have been other mentions about tunnels in and out of the subterranean levels of the Crypts.

      In either case, if there are “hidden passageways” to escape fromWF, that means those passageways can be used to get into WF.

      I’m not sure if Theon remembers that conversation with Luwin, or if he’s unaware of the plan to use the Crypts as a panic room. However, Theon apparently didn’t know about the hidden escape passageways until Luwin told him. Is it possible that Jon, Sansa and Arya aren’t aware of these hidden passageways?

      (2) Unless my memory or hearing fails me, in the preview of next week’s episode didn’t one of the characters say

      “the dead are already here” – as if their presence inside WF was a surprise?

      (3) If the WWs know the way in, doesn’t this mean (gasp!) that all of those children and other civilians huddling inside the Crypts are all potential AotD recruits, or corpses for NK to use for his body parts wall decorations?
      (NK’s no dummy. For all we know he’s got 3-D blueprints and an interactive map of WF on his iPad.)

      (4) Tinfoil Alert. ⚠️. The first snippet in the S8 trailer shows

      a bloody-faced, freaked out Arya running through the WF hallway or maybe Crypts passageway. That would be consistent with, for example, Arya going to check up on the folks inside the Crypts but getting unexpectedly ambushed at close range by now-wightified friends. ASNAWP wouldn’t be that freaked out by anonymous zombies – or let them get close enough to draw blood.

      (5) Tinfoil Alert ⚠️. Feel free to ignore.) I seem to recall that Bran’s slide show visions have included flocks of ravens or crows flying through the Crypts’ hallways. In my experience, most birds will fly through a passageway only if there’s an exit at the other end (they’re sensitive to air pressure changes and drafts), but are reluctant to fly into an enclosed structure, especially a dark tunnel, lest they get trapped.

      ___________
      * (From S2e10, Maester Luwin & Theon)

      Maester Luwin: “Theon, listen to me. I serve Winterfell. Now Winterfell is yours.
      I’m bound by oath to serve you.”
      Theon: “And what’s your counsel, trusted friend?”
      Luwin: “Run. Five hundred Northmen wait outside the walls. You have 20 men. You can’t win. Wait for nightfall and run.”
      Theon: “There’s nowhere to run. I’d never make it back to the Iron Islands. And even if I did, even if by some miracle I slipped through the lines and made it home, I’d be a coward. The Greyjoy who ran. The shame of the family.”
      Luwin: “Don’t go home. Join the Night’s Watch. Once a man has taken the black, he’s beyond reach of the law. All his past crimes are forgiven.”
      Theon: “I won’t make it to the Wall. I won’t make it 10 feet past the Winterfell gates.”
      Luwin: “There are ways. Hidden passageways built so the Lords of Winterfell could escape. The road will be dangerous. But with a little luck….

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    19. Ten Bears:
      Pigeon,

      Maisie was beautiful. How could Gendry resist – even if he wanted to? He wasn’t quite candid about “being with” Melisandre, but I guess he was embarrassed.

      She really was/is. And even better – he DIDN’T want to resist. I could understand his lack of detail with Mel – after all, it didn’t turn out to be a good experience for him. And here he is, with another confident, knows-what-she-wants woman, who doesn’t have any qualms about man-handling (heh) him a bit, but this time he had zero desire to escape (and zero risk of leeches, yeesh.) “I’m not the Red Woman.” ❤ Arya was quite the ‘truth game’ player here, wasn’t she? 😆

      Although I’ve always liked the thought of them together, I didn’t know if it would happen now, and I generally don’t feel the need to pair every character off. If I’m honest, this was probably the hottest love scene of the show for me, for what they decided to show (her scars and his reaction to them, her slightly awkward but unhesitating advance, and the “dear lord woman, what in the world” look on his face.) And equally what they didn’t show, you know?

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    20. Ten Bears:
      Pigeon,

      I really loved the Hound’s response to Arya asking him what he was doing there, e.g., when had he ever fought for anyone or anything other than himself, and he looked at her and replied [paraphrasing]:
      “I fought for you, didn’t I?”

      I kind of wish Beric hadn’t come along and interrupted that conversation – though I did enjoy Sandor threatening to launch Beric off the wall if he started in with another Lord of Light sermon.

      You know, you made me feel a bit better about it now. Seeing him sitting there alone, drinking, saying how she used to never shut up and now she doesn’t say anything, cut me up a bit as that dynamic is gone. Not in a bad way, she’s grown up, he’s seen visions in the flames and buried regrets – I’m just a nostalgic ol girl. 😏 But it was a beautiful moment when he said that. There’s still the begrudging love there between them, of that kind. One of my favourite scenes will always be the moment where Sandor and Brienne talk about their girl while walking towards the meeting in KL last season. 🙂

      Beric and Sandor seem to be paired this year, with Thoros gone. I really am not looking forward to next episode. Is that weird?

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    21. Ten Bears,

      Sorry to keep yammering at ya, TB. I get the foreboding feeling re: crypts. They mention it too much as safe, as others have said. I have no fear of any old bones doing the monster mash down there, but you have a point in that there must be a way in, if there is one out. I DON’T believe that Arya, Sansa, and Jon know of the passageway (just a guess). And Theon will be in the Godswood. 🤔 Perhaps Bran will see it.

      In the vision you mentioned, I think the ravens were flying through the halls of a broken-down Winterfell and not crypts, but I could be misremembering. I know what you mean about birds – I’ve rehabbed thousands and in my experience, once the lights go out, they stop. Lol.

      Also, would they reasonably be able to guide a large number of people through an old and unused for ages passageway?

      One thing that gives me a bit of hope is that the Night King can’t be a completely omniscient, all-knowing, unbeatable force. Otherwise there is just zero chance for anyone, and it can’t work like that. Certainly he could have come up with a way through the Wall long before now, had that been the case. Right? Right?

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    22. Pigeon,

      Oh please! Keep yammering! I’ve got to return to real world work when I wake up tomorrow, so I look forward to reading your responses while I still can.

      And I’ve got one more “Serious Question” to type out before I go to sleep or before the sun comes up and my bird wakes up.

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    23. Pigeon,

      “Although I’ve always liked the thought of them together, I didn’t know if it would happen now, and I generally don’t feel the need to pair every character off. If I’m honest, this was probably the hottest love scene of the show for me, for what they decided to show (her scars and his reaction to them, her slightly awkward but unhesitating advance, and the “dear lord woman, what in the world” look on his face.) And equally what they didn’t show, you know?”

      To be honest, I got lazy last night and watched the episode on my crappy bedroom TV instead of the wide screen high def TV in the other room. I’ll be rewatching both S8 episodes in HD with my sister later in the week. So I missed a lot of the visual details – though the sound and closed captioning were crystal clear.

      Even so, from what I saw I concur that this was hands down the hottest love scene on the show so far. It just caught me completely off guard. I’m actually stunned that they were able to keep this under wraps. With all of the teasers, trailers and promo shots of dragons, dragons and more dragons, and snippets of battle scenes, this scene was the most indelible. I thought last week’s cute flirtation was a nice little callback to S2, and tossing the three daggers into the same place on the target reminded me of the S1e1 arrow in the bullseye, I could not have imagined they’d follow up with that love scene. (I’m so glad I jumped off the site when the “leakers” started to intrude.)

      I mean, I liked Jaime’s scenes a lot, and anointing Brienne was great. Even Sansa & Dany’s sitdown was a pleasant development. But Arya eclipsed them all.

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    24. Pigeon,

      “One thing that gives me a bit of hope is that the Night King can’t be a completely omniscient, all-knowing, unbeatable force. Otherwise there is just zero chance for anyone, and it can’t work like that. Certainly he could have come up with a way through the Wall long before now, had that been the case. Right? Right?”

      Well, consider that comment a lead-in to Seruous Question #2, in which I cannot for the life of me understand the rationale for the Bran as Bait plan. NK may not be omniscient, but he’s not a moron. I fear BranBait has the potential to reach Wight Hunt level clusterf*ckery.

      Details to follow…

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    25. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      Yes!

      And how they cut to Davos at the line ‘In the Father’s name, I charge you to be Just’ and to Pod for ‘In the Mother’s name, I charge you to protect the innocent’ .

      Davos, the father figure, is Just and Pod has a kind heart in that world, which is true innocence (rather than lack of experience which is naivety).

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    26. Ten Bears,

      I think this is the first time we’ve seen Maisie Williams play Arya as an alluring, beautiful, and self-confident young woman in a romantic setting. Her dialogue delivery and inflection were pitch perfect.

      Agreed! Maisie totally owned that scene and I loved how Arya left Gendry dumfounded and speechless. Like “is this happening?” hahaha

      And thank you for the links to the Last Seduction. Never saw that movie but definitely similar to Arya’s scene.
      —–

      Regarding the crypts – I have to agree with you there especially how often they came up this past episode. I worry for those inside and how horrific it would be if the dead really do infiltrate the crypts OR the old Kings and Lords of winter arise as some have suggested. I just keep thinking about poor little Sam and Gilly. However, there is that other tinfoil theory about the stone kings arising in order to protect those at Winterfell. Bran the builder created Winterfell so perhaps the same magic that created the Wall and kept the dead out until recently also exists within the crypts? But with all the foreshadowing going on regarding the crypts … I don’t think it’s a positive outcome.

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    27. Dragonbringer,

      That’s your own point of view. Many saw it how cogman the writer saw it. I think it was portrait as it saw on the script. First Jon tel the news. And she was only concern about the iron throne. (which I think Jon should not have a problem with that thinking because he himself was concern the most about it last episode) and he was shocked that dany was mostly concern about that. And later she snapped to him that the dead were already here. Looking at Jon.

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    28. Tycho Nestoris:
      My only complaint about this episode goes back to a decision from season 5.

      Would have been nice to have Barristan Selmy there for Jon and Daenerys. But I digress.

      Agree,

      This delves into the fact Rhaegar left the LC of the Kingsguard and Ser Arthur Dayne (best swordsman) at the Tower instead of bringing them to battle

      He would have been aware of Dawn (the sword) as well

      But add this to the list I guess, eg Blackfish to be acting alongside Royce would have made a lot of sense too

        Quote  Reply

    29. I was hoping we would get a Lyanna Mormont and Jorah Mormon initial meeting, alas, we didn’t , seems one happened , we did get their next meeting (I guess it was their next?) kinda part way through their conversation. At least we got a scene of them in conversation.

        Quote  Reply

    30. Ayra should of got it on with the hound, would of been better.

      crazy 6 episodes left and they always manage to fit in a sex scene
      in the big battle the night king will stop mid fighting to give pondrick a bit of zombie loving

        Quote  Reply

    31. Kevin1989,

      I was speaking about what was in this episode and last episode…
      I didn’t say dany didn’t have that reaction but I was speaking about how it’s been singled out when jon had the same reaction …how can he be shocked when he himself had reacted the same…

      Why can’t Bryan speak about how dany feels here …since she was the one who is going to react to the reveal…no it has to be emilia who should be coming to the defence…
      If it was wrong of dany to have that reaction ..then What does it say about bran,Sam and job who had all reacted the same way …

        Quote  Reply

    32. All those poor unsullied soldiers. Given their freedom all to go to a cold foreign land, fight legions of ice demons and die.

      I have an idea what Dany could do next episode or the one after.
      She tells Sansa she’s fighting this war for Jon when all she’s ever wanted was to go to KL and take the Iron throne from Cercei. Sansa then basically tells her that even if she helps them win she will still not be accepted Queen in the North as they want independence. They are showing her more and more feeling isolated. Theon comes back but basically for Sansa. Tyrion has Jamie, Missandei has Greyworm, and what if Jorah dies?? If Jon remains “distant” as he has been, and she starts viewing him as a threat more than anything, it might leave her saying “screw it” taking the dragons and leaving the battle for King’s Landing. If so, I have absolutely no idea what happens after that. Does Rhaegel flee and go back to Jon? Any speculation on this?

        Quote  Reply

    33. Kevin1989,

      I think the context under which Jon and Dany were told is important difference. The way Sam presented it to Jon compared to how Dany heard it from Jon himself. Sam in his revelation was basing the conversation on Jon’s being an heir to Iron throne and Dany’s fitness for the throne and Jon was in front of his mom’s statue when Dany started talking about his father, her brother. I think Jon was at this point feeling the weight of emotion on knowing now who his mother was and all that goes with it so when he told Dany he’s a Targaryen too he probably expected or hoped she would pick up on that context first and foremost. But she didn’t.

        Quote  Reply

    34. Ghost’s Lunch,

      You just reminded me. What is going in the Riverlands? Or Moat Cailin (is the castle empty? where you at Howland????)

      We were left on a bit of a cliffhanger in regards to RR and MC. Is it just a general chaos from the power vacuum? Did Cersei wrangle the remaining Freys together in her spare time? Is Nym in charge now? : )

        Quote  Reply

    35. my tinfoil theory is that its wighted Gendry Arya is running from, and she has to use the weapon he made for her to kill him. Dunno,, Really really tempted to not watch the episode till I find out what happens. I do that in books sometimes, when my heart cant bear the news, then go back and read how it happened. We’ll see, its only Tuesday,

      I am hoping the dead kings rise up and fight the NK, and save most of the people or at the very least lead them all to safety

        Quote  Reply

    36. I watched the ep again last night with a little less wine on hand then on Sunday. I completely agree with most on here that if a show repeats a line 47 times that the ‘crypts are the safest’ place to be then I’d want my favorite characters anywhere else but in the crypts.

      The preview at the end of Ep2 showed Dany midly scorning Jon when she says, ‘The dead are already here’ This line struck my very oddly as she seemed mad as hell (shocker) but it also almost seemed like she had physically witnessed them in Winterfell…?

      The shows history doesn’t bode well for the newly introduced little girl with the facial scars who will be down in said crypts. Sadly I thought back to the little wildling kids we saw at Hardhome..

      Mostly as a way for me to start coping in advance, these are my death predictions for ep3.

      Theon – he dead. Will come back with blue eyes.
      Jorah – he dead. After giving him the family sword, Sam says, ‘I’ll see you again’
      Pod – he dead
      Greyworm or Missandei, – one of them is dead
      Brienne or Jamie – one of them is dead
      Tormund, Beric & Edd – dead
      Dany – I’m on the fence
      Drogon & Rhaegal – I freeze framed when aotd showed up, they had 2 ice spears 😵 but I’m on the fence.
      Ghost/direwolves – doesn’t look good.
      90% of those (alive) in crypt – dead
      Varys – dies saving some kids
      Gendry – dead but least he went out with a bang.

      shitballs, Sunday is going to suck.

        Quote  Reply

    37. BranStark,

      She has anger issues. Not healthy, she will get an ulcer. She should see a councillor about it, a Maester even. Do you think they have a link in their chain for anger management councilling?

        Quote  Reply

    38. Am I the only one who thinks Dany is shading Jon when she says “the dead are already here”? Referring to him having died and been resurrected.

        Quote  Reply

    39. ash: my tinfoil theory is that its wighted Gendry Arya is running from, and she has to use the weapon he made for her to kill him.

      If you look at that sequence carefully, you will see that Arya is carrying a long obsidian spear head attached to a 4 inch long wooden hilt/haft, suggesting that the weapon that Gendry made for her has been broken.

      Of course, it might just be any obsidian blade picked up near the forge. There is no reason to believe that Gendry is dead. The ep 3 trailer shows Arya fully clothed and on the battlements of WF near Sansa. So she clearly gets up after her tryst with Gendry and is outside of the castle. Something else brings her back in and the sequence in the castle corridors (it is definitely the castle, not the crypts as there are windows visible) must happen after those events. So it is Forgesex> Clothed and on battlements >> back inside Winterfell fleeing the WWalkers/wights.

        Quote  Reply

    40. Tyrion Pimpslap:
      Am I the only one who thinks Dany is shading Jon when she says “the dead are already here”? Referring to him having died and been resurrected.

      Uhmm… Yes? You really are the only one thinking that. (Stop overthinking.)

        Quote  Reply

    41. I’ve been reading recaps and various theories and assumption about how the conflict between Dany and Jon turns out. And despite me being a romantic, deep inside I feel that it’s not going to end well. Almost everyone is sure that Dany is becoming the main antagonist of the show based on hints from the first two episodes.

      Yet, is it just possible that they might be wrong, as I wish for? Dany has been claiming her right to the Iron Throne based on her birthright as the last Targ. Leaving aside the initial shock and disbelief, if the birthright is the most important, then she must realize that Jon has a better claim to the throne than her and, unless she really turns mad, as many hope for, she might accept it. The show creators have been building her story to put her on the Iron Throne, and even though this actually might not happen, for me it would be too obvious a twist that she becomes mad and want the throne more than anything. A more unespected twist, in my opinion, would be her resigning the throne she has desired for so long, especially with these hintsthis season that she is turning mad. This of course provided that she believes Jon, that she does not deny the truth because she becomes blinded by her frustration and thwarted efforts to conquer the Seven Kingdoms.
      Yet, we have seen in previous seasons, and this has been confirmed by variois characters, Tyrion included (who is best at judging characters), that she is able of listening to a good advice from her counsellors. Tyrion can’t be wrong once more, right? With the right counsel from her advisors, she might realize that perhaps the birthright is not enough and that the right to rule must be earned, as Jon has earned it (even though Jon has been too good throughout, how can that be in this world of ice and fire). This of course provided she tells her counsellors what Jon told her, which she might not do. In that case we will see only her impulsive character erupt and there comes the villain.
      To conclude, I don’t believe they get to rule together happily ever after but rather make peace with one another when one of them is dying, probably Dany giving birth to their child. Especially because I think Jon will be disturbed with Dany thinking more of the Iron Trone than their relationship (I don’t think them being cousins will have that much impact on Jon as others believe).
      I would appreciate your thoughts on this.
      Thanks,
      Marianne

        Quote  Reply

    42. Tyrion Pimpslap: Am I the only one who thinks Dany is shading Jon when she says “the dead are already here”? Referring to him having died and been resurrected.

      I brought it up in a prev thread yesterday, but it was largely ignored. I think the idea (referring to Jon and Beric’s undead state of existence) has merit…but how could it be strategic?

        Quote  Reply

    43. Aren’t Ned’s (unburned) bones in the crypt…among others?

      I also didn’t realize how many Others there were. The last shot from ep 2 indicates there are hundreds if not thousands.

        Quote  Reply

    44. Yes, Ned’s bones are in the crypts. Catelyn sent them to Winterfell, after she had received and taken a look at them.
      BTW… I have to wait until Monday to watch e2 (and 3 straight afterwards!). Meanwhile I spoiler myself by reading Your essays and comments about e2. I couldn’t wait and I’m very glad now, that You all are so excited and happy!

        Quote  Reply

    45. Even if the NK is able to raise the dead in the crypts, and if they can actually get themselves out of stone tombs, and dead Ned is there and one of them, how would we actually know the body running around without a head is his? 😉

        Quote  Reply

    46. Clob,

      I know I am answering a tongue in cheek question. That said, maybe they show Ned busting out of his tomb, Mr Kool-Aid man style?

        Quote  Reply

    47. KG:
      Pigeon,

      I got in a Twitter fight with Daniel Portman once, and told him I hoped his character dies.

      Curses! You won THIS round, Portman! 🙂

      Ok, I’ma need some details on THAT. Lol!!! 😳

        Quote  Reply

    48. Thanks for all the links, Vanessa. I was especially looking for that Games revealed video.

      Also, the ship name for Arya and Gendry is Gendrya. 😀

        Quote  Reply

    49. I think she’s running from wight Nymeria.

      ash:
      my tinfoil theory is that its wighted Gendry Arya is running from, and she has to use the weapon he made for her to kill him.Dunno,, Really really tempted to not watch the episode till I find out what happens. I do that in books sometimes, when my heart cant bear the news, then go back and read how it happened.We’ll see, its only Tuesday,

      I am hoping the dead kings rise up and fight the NK, and save most of the people or at the very least lead them all to safety

        Quote  Reply

    50. Pigeon,
      He’d been yelling about the election, and I more or less told him to mind his own business and take care of his own country’s messes.

      It didn’t go over well lol

        Quote  Reply

    51. One thing I’ve not seen discussed but given Cogman is close to GRRM and D&D know the endings of all main characters do we assume Brienne will also be knighted in the books? It does feel like a suitable end game moment of her arc.

        Quote  Reply

    52. In some of the insight videos John Bradley, Issaac and others appear to be in a different location, where it’s sunny, wearing different costumes. Does this mean they are filming in Spain/Croatia potentially? I.e. that they survive and make it back to Kings Landing.

        Quote  Reply

    53. Viz:
      Hmmm… looking at those HBO videos I realized that there’s some odd character and background relationships during the interviews… Jamie is interviewed on-set at what looks like Winterfell’s great hall, but Bran’s setting is what appears to be the Dragonpit? Interesting…

      I picked up on the same thing, Sansa, Sam, Isaac and Gendry all filming in sunnier climates and in different attire too. I think this may infer they all survive the next episode and make it to Kings Landing.

        Quote  Reply

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