It is Monday and we turned blue with Winter arriving at the doorstep of Winterfell. So much for Monday blues, eh? Another morning and a brand new episode of Game Of Thrones. This is a spoiler-filled review so read at your own risk.
There is a twisted sense of humor as we realize we’ve come full circle ever since the ‘Golden Lion’, Jaime Lannister, threw down a little boy off a tower to keep his rather promiscuous relationship secret with his… erm, twin sister. Fast forward eight seasons and one episode and now we see this little boy, not so little anymore has become a cryptic wizard who is part of the little panel that decides the fate of the very man who got away doing whatever he wanted.
“The things we do for love.”
I’m not saying that that didn’t send chills down my spine. We’ve all been waiting for these two to come face to face again and we’re not disappointed. The little quip from Bran was a good way to mess with Jaime. Nonetheless, we see this to be a subtle underlying theme for the entire episode, as the residents and guests of Winterfell have one quiet night before the White Walkers come banging on their doors, laying a wintry waste.
The episode revolves around everyone, each settling themselves with each other and preparing in their own ways for The Great War to come. Missandei and Grey Worm, Arya and Gendry, Sam and Gilly, Sansa and Theon, Dany and Jon, Arya and the Hound. Each of these encounters is filled with little moments of reconciliation, settlements, and in one wild case, sex for the first (It was No One).
The episode was rather jam-packed with multiple scenes. The one that stood out was the little scene between Jaime and Bran. Although there is not much we can take from this episode, we see this to be one of the more important ones.
Jaime and Bran got on pretty well just at the early part of the episode and they did hit the right notes. Jaime goes on to talk about the “afterwards” and Bran drops in an ominous “How do you know there would be an afterwards?” This can either mean that Jaime will die before the show is done or there might be time reset as some people say.
We see another important theme of Game of Thrones come up again. The inner conflict between Loyalty and Duty. My memory stretches way back to season one when Maester Aemon and Jon have a conversation about duty versus love. “Love is the death of duty,” he said. “We all do our duty when there’s no cost to it,” he added. But eventually “there comes a day when it is not easy, a day when he must choose.”
True to this, many of our characters have already made their choices, just by being present at Winterfell, abandoning their families and homes and choosing to fight in The Great War. It’s not the love for families and clans and family honor that you see here, much like what has been seen in the last seven seasons. This is more of love toward the entire human race and taking a stand against that which threatens to drown the world in a sea of Death and Despair.
What Might Unfold
I think it is safe to say that with the heartwarming moments between each of our characters (Not you, Cersei), we are only going to be all the more vulnerable when the bodies of our beloved characters pile up against one another in the war to come.
Scenes such as the one with Missandei and Grey Worm, where Grey Worm begins planning a future, or with Bran saying, “how do you know there would be an afterwards?” are quite a clear indication to the perils that lie ahead.
To sum it up here is a recap of events in the second episode of season eight:
Jon finally reveals to Dany that he is Aegon Targaryen, the son of Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen. To that, Dany replies that he would have a claim to the iron throne, rather saltily.
The song sung by Podrick is called “Jenny of Oldstones,” a melancholy ballad to parallel the episode’s general sense of final shared moments and impending doom.
Bran is going to be used as a bait to lure in the Night King so he can fight him in the open and kill him.
With that, we may prepare ourselves to lose some of our finest characters, as the epic saga unfolds into the finale this season.