Game of Thrones returns to our screens to answer a few questions, not answer a heap more, and to freak us out a little.
***SPOILER ALERT. Contains spoilers for Game Of Thrones Season 6 Episode 1.
Doo, do, do-do-do, doo, do-do-do-doo, do-do-do-doo, do-do-do-doo, do-do-do-doo
It’s finally back! (Man, I love that intro music.)
With fanfare and expectation rarely seen before in television history, HBO’s cashiest cow of the lot has finally returned, and not a moment too soon. Thankfully, the recap sequence at the beginning did a pretty good job of refreshing the viewers mind about how many story lines are currently at play, as I have to admit that I’d forgotten a couple.
Straight off the bat, last year’s big cliffhanger got answered pretty quickly, as it very much appears that Jon Snow is proper dead. I mean, it would have been a miracle of exotic medicine to bring him back from ‘several sword wounds to the torso,’ but he’s gone. In this form anyway, whatever the hell that is supposed to mean. It’s probably a good thing that Jon’s big-boned and cuddly friend with the nice personality is off being a foster dad at the moment, because he wont be taking this well when he finds out. There will be tears.
Castle Black – and the Night’s Watch in general – is on the verge of it’s own civil war, with the grossly unlikable Alliser Thorne leading one side, and Sir Davos, the Wolf and the Witch leading the other. It will most certainly be an interesting showdown, although I do hope they hurry up with it; Jon’s corpse is gonna get pretty stinky if they don’t.
The perpetual victim Sansa Stark, and her trusty sidekick ‘Theon and the Angry Inch,’ survived their snow jump, and made their way through the cold forest (winter is coming, don’t forget) with Ramsay’s dogs hot on their scent. Now, Ramsay’s dogs seem to be the most unstoppable force in all of Westoros, because no matter how much of a jump you get on them, his sneaky dogs are gonna track you down. Thankfully Brienne and Podrick turn up just in the knick of time, and Theon gets to make himself useful again. Finally, somebody got away from that fuckin Ramsay wanker. (Side note, Ramsay better have a super painful and ironic death coming up. Soon. I hate him so much.) You’d think now that Sansa is in the safe hands of Brienne, that she should at least have a few moments of feeling safe, but who knows? Like, where is she actually going to go? Castle Black to find out about her latest dead brother?
Speaking of Stark girls in trouble, Arya has seen better days, pun intended. Her whole story line with the Faceless Men is kind of… boring? Yeah, it’s boring. I realise it’s highly detailed stuff and it’s gonna be important for how this whole thing finishes up, but right now, I really don’t care that she’s a blind beggar getting beaten up with a stick by that skinny little wannabe. And I should care, because Arya is awesome.
There was another Dorne story line… that’s going well. I did, however, feel genuine sympathy for Cersei as she watched her brother-from-the-same-mother Jaime bring the body of her daughter Myrcella into shore. That is one of the most impressive aspects of this show, the way different tragedies can shift your sympathies towards characters you’ve very recently despised. She will retaliate for this one, probably by declaring war on Dorne’s one and only courtyard.
Over in Meereen, Daenerys keeps finding ways of not heading to Kings Landing with her male harem and taking the throne with her Dragons. This time, her dragon has dumped her into the hands of another Dothraki tribe, who are eyeing off this fair-haired and helpless-looking blonde girl like a pack of hyenas on a carcass. Dany keeps her nerve though, and plays her ‘I’m Khal Drogo’s widow’ card at just the right moment. It saved her life – for now – but now she’s off to spend her years in the Dothraki Institutionalised Care Facility for Widows of Deceased Khal’s.
Meanwhile, Tyrion is wandering around Meereen trying to work out what to do with himself, but in the short span of time he is on screen, he manages to drop the best one-liner of the night. “Good thing you’re not a boy any more… because you have no cock.” Peter Dinklage is ten types of brilliant.
I’ll wrap this review up in the same way that the show runners wrapped up this episode; with a gross-out. So, it turns out, Melisandre doesn’t just like looking at herself nude in the mirror because she’s a horn-bag, she does it because she’s a 200 year old horn-bag with a ‘pimp my body’ necklace. It was an interesting scene, which raised many, many questions. Does she do this every night before bed? Is there a reason she has to do it? Has nobody ever had to wake her up in the morning for some reason, and discovered her? Did Stannis know about this? Is Sir Davos about to know about this? “Excuse me, evil witch who I hate, I was wondering if you could help us out with OH MY GOD!”
It was a pretty solid return for Game of Thrones, plenty of story lines at crossroads, and lots to play out.
- No Littlefinger this week, which means he is obviously off somewhere trading baby hearts for gold coins.
- The actor who plays Bran must be in his late 20’s by now.
- Friend-Zone and Boy-Toy may be a dynamic duo, but I reckon they might struggle to take on an entire Dothraki Army. At least they are getting along though. It’s important to Dany that they be friends.
- Even though Brienne keeps proving that she’s the toughest person on the whole show, you wonder if she maybe needs to take up a non-Stark related hobby?