In the Game of Thrones recap, Jon Snow is avenged, the Boltons face a mutiny, and Tyrion unleashes the dragons back into the world….
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
Jon Snow is alive!
Let’s go ahead and get that out of the way right now because it’s going to be the topic on everyone’s mind after this latest episode of Game of Thrones.
As many predicted, the Lady Melisandre was able to call on her god to bring back the Lord Commander after he laid dead for a number of days and her faith was restored although as of right now she doesn’t know that her spell actually worked.
Jon Snow’s resurrection isn’t necessarily a surprise considering his role in the war to come, but the creators behind Game of Thrones certainly put on a good game face to make us all believe he wasn’t coming back.
The question now becomes, what version of Jon Snow has just been brought back from the dead?
Remember the only other person we’ve met who came back from the dead on the show was the leader of the Brotherhood without Banners — Beric Dondarrion.
He was resurrected numerous times by his friend Thoros of Myr but he said every time he returned from the dead, he was a little bit less than before. It’s impossible to say if Jon Snow will be back as the same person who led the Night’s Watch and was preparing to face an army of the dead coming from beyond the Wall.
Only in the weeks ahead will we know for sure, but Jon Snow is back and that much we know is true.
This week also featured some other huge moments including Roose Bolton’s death, the introduction of Euron Greyjoy and much more.
With that said, let’s recap the latest episode of Game of Thrones titled ‘Home’….
Whatchu Talking Bout Willis?
This week’s episode began with a face we haven’t seen in more than a season as Bran Stark returned after training with the Three-Eyed Raven north of the Wall. Bran arrived there at the close of season four and he remained off the canvas for an entire year while his training was underway.
As we pick up in the latest episode, Bran is traveling through his power as a greenseer, which allows him to visit times and places in the past, present and future. This time around, Bran was back at Winterfell many, many years before he was born as he witnessed his father Ned and his uncle Benjen practicing with swords and shields.
He also sees his aunt Lyanna for the first time ever — she was dead long before he was ever born and the catalyst that led to Robert’s Rebellion and the downfall of the Targaryen empire. A quick refresher — Lyanna was “kidnapped” by Rhaegar Targaryen and her promised husband Robert Baratheon started an uprising to take back his queen and take down the Targaryen’s for stealing her away from him. The end result was Robert sitting on the Iron Throne but he still couldn’t save Lyanna as she died at the Tower of Joy in Dorne.
From the look of the preview next week, we will see more of the Tower of Joy in another flashback sequence but that’s a story for another day.
Meanwhile, Bran also learns that his faithful traveling companion Hodor wasn’t always a giant who only knew one word. In fact, his name was Willis and he was a stable boy who knew Ned Stark while he was still a child. Bran vexes on what happened to Willis that transformed him into a one sentenced machine known as Hodor but for now we won’t get those answers.
Bran’s visit to Winterfell is cut short by the Three-Eyed Raven, who warns him that these trips are necessary but also dangerous. Remember a couple of seasons ago when Bran kept “warging” into his wolf and spending less and less time in his own body — the more time he spends away from himself, the less chance he has to come back. The same rules apply for Bran traveling to different places and times to see the world as it once was or what will one day be.
Three Eyed Raven: “It is beautiful beneath the sea but if you stay too long, you’ll drown”
Bran: “I wasn’t drowning — I was home”
Meanwhile, Meera Reed is feeling rather helpless in her current role as she just sits and waits for Bran to complete his training. One of the Children of the Forest tells her that she will play a role in the war to come and Bran will need her by his side. Is Meera going to become Bran’s wife one day perhaps? She is a noble child after all so it’s possible.
A Royal Funeral
Back in King’s Landing it’s time for Myrcella’s funeral but Queen Cersei is not allowed to attend after her son orders the King’s guard to prevent her from leaving her quarters and making her way to the Great Sept. While she’s half tempted to sick Ser Robert Strong (aka a zombified Mountain) on them, she instead retires back to her room wondering why her son has forsaken her.
At the sept, Jamie Lannister wonder the same thing as he questions Tommen about his decision to bar his mother from attending her own daughter’s funeral. One part of Tommen is acting out against Cersei because in large part he believes his wife is in captivity because of her own doing when she empowered the Faith Militant. The other part is scared that his mother will be recaptured and placed back in the cells beneath the holy building where Queen Margaery remains to this day.
Tommen even wonders if Cersei is the one behind Prince Trystane’s murder, but his “uncle” Jamie quickly puts that theory to bed. When the High Sparrow arrives and further taunts the king by denying him a visit to see his beloved queen, Jamie sends Tommen to spend time with his mother while he handles the pious leader of the Faith Militant.
Jamie wonders why the High Sparrow has chosen to persecute some but not all sinners who are in his midst. For instance, Jamie killed a king and murdered his own cousin for the sake of escape yet he’s free as a bird. Jamie even tugs at his dagger as the High Sparrow looks at him in the eye.
High Sparrow: “You would spill blood in this holy place?”
Jamie: “The gods won’t mind. They spill more blood than the rest of us combined.”
The moment the High Sparrow is threatened, a dozen or more of his Faith Militant appear in the stairs above them. Jamie wonders why the High Sparrow had his men positioned so far away that there would be no chance they could get to him before his knife had already slit the priest from stem to sternum. The High Sparrow reminds Jamie that the Faith Militant follow by their beliefs and his death will only cause them to seek even further vengeance against the sinners.
And their numbers would grow even bigger in the wake of his death.
“We have no names. No family. Everyone of us is poor and powerless and yet together, we can overthrow an empire.”
~ High Sparrow
Jamie lowers his sword and realizes that this enemy won’t be dispatched by simply killing one man. It’s going to take a lot more than that to squash this religious uprising.
Back at the Red Keep, Tommen finally visits with his mother where he apologizes for keeping her locked away while her daughter was being laid to rest. He expresses concern for her well being and his own fear that has managed to cripple his every decision. Tommen was too scared to strike back when the Faith Militant took his wife and he was too scared to do the same when they took his mother. Instead, he stood by and did nothing while they paraded his mother around the city like a common whore and that’s something this king will never forget.
Now in his moment of need, he’s asking his mother for guidance to help him become a true king.
“You raised me to be strong and I wasn’t but I want to be. Help me.”
~ King Tommen
Cersei embraces her son but you have to wonder is she truly dedicated to what he needs most or is she still convinced that even Tommen will meet a grisly end just like Joffrey and just like Myrcella — just like the witch prophesized when she was a child. Or perhaps, Cersei realizes that through all her pain and suffering, she’s finally got Tommen back where she’s always wanted him — directly in the palm of her hand.
Friend or Fury
Back in Meereen, Tyrion is sitting with his council, trying to figure out the next move to make while trying to prevent the entire city from falling into anarchy. The loss of the fleet means Queen Daenerys won’t be traveling anywhere by sea and that’s assuming she ever returns.
Meanwhile, Astapor and Yunkai have both fallen back into the hands of the masters, which means only Meereen is still a free city in Slaver’s Bay and judging by the way things have been going lately, that won’t last much longer either.
To add to the growing list of problems, Tyrion is told that the two remaining dragons — Rhaegal and Viserion — aren’t eating and are currently wasting away in a dungeon beneath the great pyramid. Tyrion wonders if freeing the dragons isn’t a better alternative — maybe they can strike fear back into the lands that continue to defy the mother of dragons?
Tyrion: “Dragons do not do well in captivity.”
Messandei: “How do you know this?”
Tyrion: “That’s what I do — I drink and I know things”
As Tyrion explains, when Aegon Targaryen conquered the Seven Kingdoms on the back of his dragon, Balerion the Dread, the great beasts flew through the skies and kept watch over the Targaryen dynasty from above. Over the years, the Targaryen’s started putting chains on their dragons as if they were horses, and as year passed over year, the great scaled beasts lost what made them such feared creatures to begin with. As their freedom dwindled, so did their desire to live and eventually the dragons became extinct.
Tyrion believes the same thing will happen again if the remaining dragons aren’t freed to fly the skies over Meereen while they wait for their mother to return. Tyrion also believes that if he approaches the dragon as a friend instead of an enemy, they will allow him to remove their chains and free them from the dungeon.
“They have affection for their friends and fury for their enemies. I am their friend.”
Tyrion goes into the dungeon with Varys, although the “Spider” stays at the top of the stairs while he let’s his dwarf friend handle this particular job. Tyrion approaches the dragons below and while they snarl and snap, they don’t breathe fire and they don’t hurt him. Tyrion tells a story about how he asked for a dragon just like them on his Name Day many years ago but his father had to tell him that they were extinct.
Slowly but surely while he’s telling the story, Tyrion manages to release the chains and collars holding both dragons captive. Tyrion slowly backs away and then climbs up the stairs where he finds Varys still waiting on him.
“Next time I have an idea like that, punch me in the face.”
Tyrion has freed the dragons, but will they manage to find their mother or even their brother? Is it possible another rider could climb on them and help rule in Daenerys’ absence? Time will tell.
The Red Mutiny
Back at Winterfell, Roose and Ramsay find out about their hunting expedition that was butchered while searching for Sansa Stark and Theon Greyjoy. Ramsay knows they had help to escape and he believes the best course of action is sending a party of soldiers north to the Wall to cut them off because Sansa is most certainly traveling to see her brother, Jon Snow.
Roose Bolton reminds his son that if he revolts against the Night’s Watch, all of the Northern houses will turn against them and as it stands, most of them are already against the Boltons ever since they took over from the Starks. If you behave like a mad dog, people will treat you like a mad dog, Roose warns his son.
A moment later, Roose gets some welcome news as his bride Lady Walda has given birth to a baby boy. Once again, Ramsay is suffering from a major case of jealousy as he continues to worry that his claim to the throne once his father is gone will not stand up with a new son now born into the family. Roose reminds Ramsay that no matter what else happens, he will always be his first born son. Ramsay thanks his father for those kind words.
And then stabs his father to death!
Yes, Ramsay Bolton murdered his own father along with the Karstarks, who are clearly standing by him during this mutiny. You’ll remember the Karstarks — they were a Northern family that supported Robb Stark until he refused to avenge his son’s death after Jamie Lannister killed him so Lord Karstark butchered two Lannister children who were being held captive as revenge. Robb then had him beheaded and soon after the entire Karstark army left his side. A few days later, Robb Stark was dead at the Red Wedding.
Now Ramsay is in control of the North and there’s no telling what he will do next.
“Maester Walkin — send ravens to all the Northern houses — Roose Bolton is dead. Poisoned by our enemies.”
After passing along the lies about how his father died, Lord Ramsay Bolton takes his stepmother and his new baby brother into the kennel where he proceeds to feed them to his dogs. Ramsay isn’t one for competition and this child won’t ever present a claim to his throne as the new Warden of the North.
“I prefer being an only child”
Further north of Winterfell, Sansa finds out that her sister Arya is still alive although Brienne has no idea where she’s disappeared to after their initial meeting near the Eyrie when she was still traveling with The Hound.
Sansa is determined to get to the Wall so she can reunite with her brother Jon, but Theon has decided that he’s no longer of any use to them. He knows deep down that no matter what he does he can never make up for the way he betrayed the Stark family or his brother Robb. Sansa tries to talk him down but Theon has made up his mind — he’s returning home to the Iron Islands perhaps? As one astute reader reminded me, maybe Theon is returning home to Ramsay?
In a tease for next week, someone does show up with a present for Ramsay, could it be Theon?
The Crow’s Eye
Speaking of the Iron Islands, we finally return there for the first time in several seasons as we catch up with Yara Greyjoy, who is berating her father Balon about his continued attempts to raid and conquer lands in the North despite the War of the Five Kings coming to an end and defeat after defeat of their men. Yara doesn’t understand why Balon can’t just be satisfied ruling the Iron Islands and continuing to have the most lethal navy in the Seven Kingdoms, but he’s going to have things his way or no way.
After speaking to his daughter, Balon walks out across an old rickety bridge in the middle of a great storm when he’s greeted by a man wearing a hooded cloak over his face.
Meet Euron Greyjoy — younger brother to Balon Greyjoy and uncle to both Yara and Theon.
In the books, Euron was banished from the Iron Islands after he raped his other brother’s wife. Euron ended up captaining a pirate ship called the Silence that became one of the scariest sights for anybody traveling on the sea. Euron sailed all over the Known World, raping, pillaging and pirating anything he could get his hand on.
Upon his return, Euron immediately gets into an argument with his older brother.
“I am the storm, brother. The first storm and the last and you’re in my way.”
~ Euron Greyjoy
A second later, Balon attempts to stab his brother, but Euron gets the upper hand and tosses him over the side. Balon falls to his death, hundreds of feet below as his head smashes against the rocks.
The next day, Balon is set out to sea and Yara wants to make a claim to his throne but the priest tells her that she can’t just take over because she was his daughter. Yara has to fight for that right and if she wins, she can take her place as the first ever woman to rule the Iron Islands.
Something tells me, Euron will play a part in who actually ends up ruling the Iron Islands in the end.
She Is No One
Back in Braavos, Arya is still a beggar girl with no sight who has to defend herself daily whenever the Waif finds her in the street and challenges her to a duel with bo staffs. Each time, Arya loses but she continues to try until her staff is finally caught in the hand of a familiar grip.
It’s Jaqen H’ghar and he’s there to ask her three simple questions.
If she tells him her name she can have a roof over her head, a warm meal and her eyesight returned. Each time, Arya answers that her name is no one and finally on the third attempt, Jaqen tells her to follow him and to drop the beggar’s cup. She’s a beggar no more.
It appears the penance Arya was paying for killing without permission a season ago has finally been paid and she’s ready to return to her training as one of the Faceless Men.
On the Third Day
Back at the Wall, Ser Alliser Thorne is finally out of patience and he’s ready to storm through the doors to get at the men who have been standing vigil by Jon Snow’s body ever since he was discovered in the yard. Davos admits that he’s not much of a fighter, but in this instance, he’s going to swing a sword until his final breath is drawn.
It’s never necessary because a moment later a rapping is heard at the gates of Castle Black and before long they are smashed to the ground as a giant has emerged along with a Wildling army being led by Tormund Giantsbane.
It seems Dolorous Edd has found the back up he needed to avenge Jon Snow’s death.
Thorne tries to stand up to the Wildling army but it’s clear he’s outnumbered and out gunned. Edd orders Thorne tossed into the cells below while they tend to the Lord Commander.
Tormund is saddened to see Jon Snow dead and he mentions that it’s probably time to build a funeral pyre to burn his body before he returns from the dead as one of the zombies for the White Walkers. Davos isn’t ready to give up on Jon Snow just yet so he makes one more passionate plea to Lady Melisandre to save his life.
She’s still in a melancholy mood after believing that her lord has forsaken her, but Davos knows she possesses some mighty powerful magic and he’s asking her to use it one more time to try and save the fallen Lord Commander.
Davos: “I’m not a devout man, obviously, seven gods, drowned gods, tree gods, it’s all the same. I’ not asking the Lord of Light for help, I’m asking the woman that showed me miracles exist.”
Melisandre: “I never had this gift.”
Davos: “Have you ever tried?”
A moment later, Melisandre is standing over Jon Snow’s body, cleaning up the blood from the wounds that caused his death. She wipes away every drop of blood while cutting away pieces of his hair and beard to feed to the fire. She begins to chant while laying her hands on Jon Snow’s body. Again and again she chants the same words but nothing is happening.
Finally, Melisandre utters ‘please’ as she’s looking for any sign that the Lord of Light is listening to her words.
Tormund has seen enough and he leaves. A moment later, Melisandre gives up and she leaves along with Edd and Davos. They’ve tried everything possible but Jon Snow is dead.
Until he isn’t.
A few moments later, Ghost wakes up from his own slumber and starts to move towards his owner while sniffing at his body. Like a bolt of lightning, Jon Snow’s eyes open wide and he gasps a deep breath, filling his lungs with the oxygen he hasn’t tasted in days.
Jon Snow is alive and all is right with the Known World again.
Tune into the next episode of Game of Thrones next Sunday night at 9pm ET and take a look at the sneak preview below: