Previously on GoT: Cersei Lannister screwed over Daenerys Targaryen by taking down her dragonless allies – Yara Greyjoy, Ellaria Sand, and Olenna Tyrell. Jon Snow took Daenerys into a cave and showed her some things. And then Dany torched a decent chunk of the Lannister army with her dragon and almost killed Jaime.
That’s right! Jaime Lannister is alive! And so is Bronn! And they got away and are totally fine and not even injured!
Jaime is like, “How dare you throw me off my horse and into a river with my armor. I could’ve died.” Bronn replies by starting with “Listen to me, cunt.”
Bronn ain’t letting Jaime die until he gets his castle. But if they have to fight a dragon again, he’s out.
On the other side of the battlefield, Tyrion Lannister is examining the extremely messy aftermath of the face-off.
The numerous Lannister and Tarly prisoners are all being brought to Daenerys and Drogon, who is watching over the whole thing like a serious badass.
Dany tells the prisoners that she is not like Cersei. She’s not here to destroy everything and kill everybody. She wants to make the world a better place.
It’s hard to tell if her motivational speech was really effective because she follows it with a “bend the knee or die” ultimatum. Obviously, most of these dudes would rather not die at this point. A few go to their knees immediately, and almost everyone else joins them after Drogon roars in their faces.
Randyll Tarly refuses to kneel, and isn’t being super respectful either. So he’s probably toast. Taking the Black isn’t an option – he’ll die with his convictions. He’s not the only one, however: his son Dickon is also standing firm.
Tyrion is desperately trying to convince Dany to be merciful toward at least Dickon, who is young and a bit more malleable and could potentially be in their pockets as a new loyal heir to the Reach after Randyll is executed.
But Daenerys has clearly lost interest in Tyrion’s opinions.
Randyll and Dickon are brought before Drogon and Randyll grabs his son’s arm, a sweet, unexpected gesture of love from a pretty tough dad.
And with that, the Tarlys are ashes. The soldiers who were still standing for some asinine reason immediately kneel, not wanting to join them.
Jaime is back in King’s Landing already because teleportation. Cersei is not impressed by all the dragons and murder and isn’t interested in stopping the fighting. She brings up Tyrion killing Tywin and Joffrey, and Jaime is like, “about that…”
Cersei is furious, but she’s still not changing her mind about the war. If she has to die fighting, so be it. Girl… get a grip.
Daenerys and Drogon return to Dragonstone, where Jon Snow was just doing his daily cliffside brooding. Drogon spots Jon and gets real close and personal. Somehow, Jon Snow, despite being pretty damn terrified, decides his best course of action here is going to be to take off his glove and pet the dragon.
Dany dismounts and Drogon flies off, leaving the two lovebirds alone.
Dany and Jon discuss the battle, and Dany asks him about the “knife to the heart” thing Ser Davos Seaworth mentioned the other day.
Their conversation is interrupted, though, as Jorah Mormont has arrived at Dragonstone because teleportation.
Meanwhile, up North, Bran Stark wargs into a flock of ravens and flies them beyond the wall to find the Night King. The Bran-birds find the cold dude pretty fast.
In Oldtown, the stuffy old maesters of the Citadel are all gathered around a bunch of scrolls discussing world news. It seems Bran has just sent them a letter about his spoopy experience beyond the Wall. Of course, Samwell Tarly was listening, and he once again intervenes like the good ol’ hero he is.
If all these old men with their boring jobs took the time to team up and tackle this issue, he suggests, maybe they would actually manage to convince the world of the legitimacy of this threat. And they could all fight back on a united front.
As usual, the maesters are not interested in doing much besides writing books and pooping. Sam storms out, furious, and one of the old dudes asks Archmaester Ebrose if this is the Samwell Tarly whose brother and father were just barbecued by Daenerys’s dragon.
Ebrose “hasn’t had the heart to tell him yet.” But I’m tempted to suspect it has more to do with laziness than heart.
In Dragonstone, Varys and Tyrion are trying not to lose their minds about Dany’s behavior. Tyrion is drinking and Varys has been tapping a rolled-up copy of Bran’s letter on the pavement for half an hour.
At some point, Varys ditches appearances and has some of Tyrion’s wine too.
Tyrion and Varys are trying to convince each other that Dany isn’t turning into her crazy father with his love of burning people alive. Heck, they’re trying to convince themselves. They’re not doing a great job.
Tyrion asks Varys if he read the letter addressed to Jon.
Jon has learned that Bran and Arya are still alive and safe – and that the army of the dead is getting closer. He has to go back. Tyrion suggests they find a reanimated dead person and bring it to Cersei to prove the existence of the threat to the north – and force everyone to put the war for Westeros on hold.
Jorah volunteers to go help with finding a wight and Dany looks worried. But when Jon announces he’ll be going too, she’s freaking heartbroken.
She tries to put on her Queen face and order him to stay, but he’s like, “I’m a fucking King, I do what I want.”
In Winterfell, the northern lords are being ultra pissy about Jon’s absence and are telling Sansa they think maybe she should be the real permanent ruler here. Arya disapproves. She thinks Sansa should just freaking execute whoever raises their voice against any of the Starks.
Arya thinks Sansa is secretly hoping Jon never comes back so she can be the Queen in the North forever. Girls! Don’t fight!
Tyrion has been smuggled into King’s Landing by Davos because teleportation, and Bronn has conveniently led Jaime to him in secret. How Tyrion contacted Bronn, I have no idea, but let’s move on.
Tyrion tries to make conversation, but Jaime is pretty damn pissed about Tywin still. Talking about their dad’s death isn’t getting them anywhere positive, though, so they change the subject. Tyrion has a request for Cersei.
Down in Fleabottom, Davos is reuniting with an old friend of his own. Ladies and gentlemen…
I KNEW he’d come back. Finally! Gendry‘s been hiding his fancy heritage for years, just being a blacksmith and biding his time. Davos is halfway through explaining what he’s up to and that Gendry should consider coming with him when Gendry announces he was basically born ready.
He’s not much into swords, he says, but he does have a weapon of preference. It’s a giant fucking hammer. With a stag on it.
Back on the shore, Davos and Gendry are getting ready to shove off (I’m sure Gendry’s an expert at rowing at this point) when they’re approached by two Gold Cloaks. They ask for an outrageous amount of money as a toll, then want to see what’s in the boat. Davos is a pro at this sort of thing, though, so he came prepared.
He lets them try it and tells them it’s an aphrodisiac and they should probably go take care of that now, hurr hurr. They’re actually convinced, except they literally run into Tyrion two seconds later.
Things get increasingly awkward as they start to question Tyrion and Davos tries to buy them off… until…
That can’t be pleasant.
Jaime walks in on Qyburn consulting with Cersei about something and tells her he met Tyrion.
Jaime relays the message – there’s an army of the dead on the way and Tyrion will be coming back with proof. But Cersei moves past all of that and immediately suggests Jaime punish Bronn for his “betrayal.”
Cersei is actually tempted to agree to a truce with Daenerys, because she knows she can’t win the way things are right now. Especially ’cause… she’s pregnant. And Jaime’s the father. Again.
But just as they’re celebrating, she throws in a “Never betray me again” to make things nice and awkward.
Davos and Gendry join Jon Snow in the dragonglass cave because teleportation. Davos warned Gendry to keep hiding his true identity, for his own safety. So of course the first two things Gendry tells Jon are his name and that he’s Robert Baratheon‘s bastard son.
Gendry and Jon talk about each other’s fathers and compare each other to them: “You’re a lot shorter,” Gendry tells Jon. It sounds exactly like Ned Stark and Robert’s very first exchange on the show, when Robert tells Ned he got fat.
Gendry follows that up by saying he wants to go with Jon up North, and Davos just gives up on trying to give sage advice to him entirely.
The North Crew is getting ready to leave. Tyrion approaches Jorah and they wax nostalgic about their time being slaves in Essos. With that, Tyrion gives Jorah the coin he was given that day, as a good-luck charm.
Dany says farewell to Jorah next, after having reunited with him literally five minutes ago.
Much more ambiguous a goodbye is Jon’s and Dany’s, as the Khaleesi is straight-up flirting with him at this point and he’s either too oblivious to notice or just has a lot going on and can’t deal with that right now. I’d say it’s a bit of both.
And with that, the North Crew is off. I feel like they probably could’ve dragged Theon along as punishment, but whatever.
In Oldtown, Gilly is reading up on fun facts about the world, like the number of steps in the Citadel and the number of liquid poops High Septon Maynard took throughout his life.
She asks what an annulment is, and reveals Maynard issued one for a certain Prince Rhaegar and married him in secret to another. Oh, so, in other words, Jon Snow’s secret parents were legitimately married and he’s not a bastard at all but a proper heir to both Houses Stark and Targaryen – and probably a more rightful ruler than Daenerys now. But Sam doesn’t register that piece of information at all.
Sam has officially lost it and is done doing these lazy old men’s busywork while they refuse to do anything useful about the crisis at hand. He kinda takes it out on Gilly and her book in the process.
So Sam does what anyone would do when faced with this particular situation: steal shit. He sneaks into the Citadel, grabs a bunch of important-looking books and scrolls, and ditches with Gilly and their adorable little inbred toddler. Adios, Citadel of Oldtown.
Up in Winterfell, Arya is spying on Littlefinger. He looks like he’s up to no good, as always. So the young Stark girl follows him around as he speaks to people and gets his hands on a very special old scroll that was supposedly requested by Lady Stark. Once he’s out of his room, she breaks in.
Soon enough, she finds the scroll hidden inside the mattress. It looks like the letter Sansa was coerced by Cersei into writing Robb when she was taken captive in King’s Landing after Ned’s execution.
Arya locks the door behind her and leaves. But what she doesn’t know is she’s been counter-spied!
The North Crew has arrived at Eastwatch-by-the-Sea because teleportation. It mostly looks like Castle Black, but with the ocean nearby. Inside, they meet with Tormund Giantsbane and recap the last couple episodes for him.
Always the fool in love, Tormund asks if there’s any chance Brienne of Tarth is here too. Jon smiles.
Davos announces he won’t be going any further than Eastwatch, as he’s not much of a fighter. Tormund isn’t happy at the lack of men here, but he does have a surprise for Jon and the others.
It takes approximately two and a half seconds for people to start arguing, starting with Gendry, who accuses the Brotherhood Without Banners of selling him to Melisandre.
Jorah and Thoros of Myr apparently know each other too, though they don’t get into that right away because Tormund gets pretty pissed off when he finds out Jorah is Lord Commander Jeor Mormont‘s son and the relative of a wildling killer.
Beric Dondarrion attempts to make an inspirational speech involving the Lord of Light, but no one really worships him here, so that doesn’t work too well. More effective is the Hound‘s approach, which is to just be his usual self.
So they do team up, because their differences can’t matter right now. What a crew, you guys.
And that’s the end of episode 5. Episode 4 was a tough act to follow, so this one did decently enough with what it was given – and set lots of things up for the final two episodes. Who do we think is gonna be the first to die in the North Crew? My money’s on Thoros.
R.I.P.: Randyll and Dickon Tarly, two Gold Cloaks, and a partridge and a pear tree.
MVP: I’m giving this one to Gendry for finally coming back and being a badass with a hammer. Davos gets an honorable mention.
Notably absent: Ghost. Dolorous Edd. Melisandre. Missandei. Grey Worm. Theon, Yara, and Euron Greyjoy. Meera Reed. Brienne of Tarth and Podrick Payne.
Until next time! Bundle up – winter is here.