Warning this article is dark and full of spoilers.
And it begins, after the excitement of last week the episode begins just where it left off in Castle Black with Jon Snow panting for breath as he has now been resurrected. Jon seems confused and overwhelmed that he was just brought back from the dead as I presume anyone would be. Melisandre suddenly seems to start having faith in the Lord of Light again and tells Jon that she thinks he might be the chosen one, but that’s all we hear about that theory. Jon then walks out into the wildlings and men of the Nights Watch watch in awe.
The story then goes to another one of Bran’s visions we see his father Ned Stark as a young man in Robert’s Rebellion against three kingsguard members, one of them being Ser Arthur Dayne who is widely considered to be the greatest swordsman to have ever lived (Ser Barristan Selmy considers Dayne to be better than him even). Ned asks Ser Dayne why he is guarding this tower and why he wasn’t with his prince at the Battle of the Trident (The battle where Rhaegar Targaryen died) to which Ser Dayne says “The prince wanted us here.” The battle then ensues, this is probably one of the best sword battles in the entire show the choreography was fantastic. After a long and fantastic fight in which Dayne takes on and defeats all but Ned, Howland Reed stands up half bleeding to death and stabs Dayne in the back, something that Ned appeared shocked at, but he was soon diverted by Lyanna’s screams in the tower. I guess we will find out soon if Jon Snow is the son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark.
The show then moves over to Essos where Daenerys is arriving as Vaes Dothrak to meet with all the widows of the Karl’s. This is where she finds out that because she didn’t come straight away after the death of Karl Drogo the Karl’s will decide what is to be done with her, and also what cities will be sacked in the coming year.
We then go to Meereen where Varys is attempting and successfully so to intimidate one of the leaders of the Sons of Harpy into telling him where the money is coming from. It is discovered that the cities that Daenerys previously sacked have gone back to slavery and are funding the Sons of Harpy. The show then cuts to Tyrion trying to break the awkwardness while waiting for Varys in the small council room. He proposes that they play a drinking game and describes it as a Game of Thrones version of never have I ever, in some of the funniest dialogue in the whole episode. After which they discuss whether they should go to war or not.
Not a whole lot happens in Kings Landing this episode, except that it is clear that Cersei is not in control of the affairs of the land as Kevan Lannister (Tywin’s brother) the new Hand of the King seems to be and for the good Cersei is too unpredictable.
Arya is back in the house of black and white training to prove that she is no-one to try and get her sight back, we then see a montage of her slowly getting better and better at fighting blind, until Jaqen H’ghar lets her drink from the fountain to give Arya her sight back.
Back in Winterfell Ramsey is clearly acting as de-facto warden of the North, when Small-Jon Umber (One of House Starks main banner man. Great-Jon Umber was the really big guy that was one of Rob Starks banner man and died at the Red Wedding) says to Ramsey “I have a surprise” and reveals that he has found Rickon Stark – the youngest of the Stark children – and assuming that all the others suspect Bran is dead that he is then the rightful heir to Winterfell. The most shocking moment about this exchange was when we learnt that Shaggydog Rickon’s direwolf had been murdered by the Umbers.
Lastly this episode again took us to Castle Black where Jon has strung up for hanging the four individuals that killed him including Olly and Ser Allister, he gives them all their last words in which Ser Allister is actually rather eloquent and says that he would have done the same if he had to do it all over again, but understands that Jon has done what he believes is right as well, Ser Allister seems to have accepted his fate. Olly just gives Jon a look of pure hatred moments before he is hung to death. And like Jon’s father taught him he swung the sword himself. Jon then gives the commander of the Nights Watch’s coat to Edd and declares him the new commander of the Nights Watch and walks out of Castle Black declaring that his watch has ended.
Image credit: Game of Thrones HBO