Game of Thrones Recap: “The House of Black and White”
[Editor’s Note: As with all our recaps, this one will be filled with spoilers for the current episode. Proceed at your own risk. We ask fans to please keep book spoilers out of this recap comment thread entirely. We’ve got another post up where folks who’ve read A Song of Ice and Fire can openly discuss the differences between the show and their implications. And don’t forget to check out last week’s premiere recap!]
This week we finally catch up with Arya on the ship to Braavos. She’s impressed by the Titan statue, as she should be, but is just overall super pumped to be there. The Captain drops her off at the House of Black and White where she knocks cautiously and asks for Jaqen H’ghar, her old buddy with the ability to change faces. The man who answers says he’s not there so Arya chooses to wait on the steps saying her prayers for days (?) until she finally decides to give up and throws her Braavosi coin in the water.
Brienne and Pod are still meandering and stop for some food. We get a silly moment of Pod flirting with the waitress before he spots Littlefinger and Sansa sitting just a few tables away. Pod suggests restraint but much like my Dungeons & Dragons character, Brienne says “fuck that” and jumps right into the fray, telling Pod to ready the horses! “We only have one,” he replies. Littlefinger allows Brienne through his group of guards, remembering her from Renly’s camp. She explains to Sansa the oath she swore to Catelyn but Littlefinger shows doubt by dragging up the events surrounding Renly’s death. Sansa decides she doesn’t want Brienne’s help. :( :( :(
Instead of leaving quietly, Brienne makes a big escape by knocking out a few guards and stealing a much-needed horse for Pod. The chase is on but Pod gets separated AND thrown from his horse. Brienne saves his butt not only cutting the guard’s sword in half with Oathkeeper but stabbing him through the throat.
In King’s Landing, Cersei and Jaime discuss a lovely present fresh in from Dorne – a dead viper with Myrcella’s necklace in its mouth. Cersei is about done with this shit, calls Margaery the “Smirking whore from Highgarden,” which has a nice ring to it, and Jaime declares he’ll go to Dorne. Cersei reminds him he’s only got one hand and he let’s her know he wasn’t planning on going alone. Cut to: Bronn with his intended Lollys, who’s busy telling a sad story about how her family’s castle won’t go to her but her older sister, who’s a big meanie. Jaime arrives and is all “come with me and I’ll get you a much better wife when we’re back.”
And finally… Dorne! Ellaria Sand finds Oberyn’s brother, Doran Martell, so she can tell him he’s being a big wuss. They watch as Trystane Martell is getting friendly with Myrcella and Doran insists they aren’t the type of people to send a little girl’s body parts back to her mother. Ellaria clearly feels differently, letting him know she has the “Sand Snakes'” support.
In Mereen Daario, Grey Worm, and more of Daenerys’ men are hunting the Sons of the Harpy. Hysterically, one of them had himself hidden inside a wall. Dany meets with her council who are deciding whether or not they should just straight up kill this dude or give him some kind of trial. One of the men on the council is an ex-slave (can’t remember if we got his name) who calls Ser Barristan “Old Ser” which made me LOL. When everyone else is gone, Barristand tells Dany a story about her father, The Mad King and how just killing people willy nilly can lead to very bad things. Ok, she decides, the Harpy will get a fair trial!
Tyrion is on the road to Volantis (to get to Mereen) in a much nicer box to travel in this time. Varys is still trying to convince him this is their best and only move at this point but Tyrion is still thinking about his past mistakes, like not leaving King’s Landing when Shea wanted him to.
Cut to: a dwarf head dropped in front of Cersei. Apparently she’s had men out looking for Tyrion except, oops, they didn’t get the right man. It’s cool, Qyburn says he can use it for his work. Cersei sashays in to a new small council meeting where she sits in the chair reserved for the Hand of the King. Uncle Kevan takes major issue with this but she ignores him and starts handing out new jobs like candy. She replaces Varys (who no one has wondered about thus far??) with Qyburn as Master of Whispers, says Lord Mace Tyrell will be Master of Coin (which he’s very happy about), and asks Uncle Kevan to serve as the Master of War. And he’s all “Hold up, I want to hear this from the King.” But also…Stannis’ daughter Shireen is teaching Gilly to read at the Wall while Gilly sasses Sam adorably for reading ridiculous history out to them. Gilly and Shireen discuss her Greyscale condition, which she was cured of when she was very young. A few of Gilly’s sisters had it and… things did not turn out so well. Lady Selyse tells her to stay away from the wildling girl. Ugh, mom!
Stannis is annoyed with Jon but that’s Stannis for you. But he’s also annoyed because the Mormont’s on Bear Island in the North are not jumping to help him in his cause. He gives Jon a deal – bend the knee and as King, he’ll make Jon a Stark for real, no longer a bastard, who can then rule Winterfell. When telling Sam this story later, Jon is all “Yeeeeah no, not gonna happen.” But in the meantime, the Night’s Watch must officially vote for a new permanent Lord Commander. Their 998th. Stupid Janos Slynt nominates the likely candidate, Alliser Thorne while another, Denys Mallister, is met with few applause. Sam obviously nominates Jon while also putting in some nice digs to Slynt. Thorne brings up Jon’s love for the Wildlings but the vote ends in a tie anyway. Maester Aemon breaks the tie, making Jon Snow the 998th Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch. Woah.
Arya takes head off pigeon to feed herself and has a run-in with a few thugs looking to take it and Needle away from her when the man from the house shows up. He gives her back the coin she threw in the water and… tada! Changes his face to reveal the one of Jawen. He welcomes her into the house.
Once more back to Mereen where the ex-slave winds up killing the Harpy for insulting Dany. He figured he was doing her a favor, that she really wanted to kill the man but her hands were tied. But Dany says, “The law is the law” and decides she must make an example out of this man. Publicly. And literally everyone at this point is shouting NO! NO! NO! at the television. The crowd begs their Mhysa for mercy but she gives none, having Daario take off his head. The reaction? Literal hisses. Yeeesh. She must make a quick exit as the crowd turns violent. She wants to be alone but goes on her terrace to see…
OH HAI, MOM!
But the reunion is short-lived as Drogon quickly flies away again. :(
Good episode? Much like last week, not a ton happened but again, we’re still catching up with everyone. Bonus points for an unbelievably good looking dragon. I’ll take 10.
Looking forward to potential action next week, how about you?
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