Jorah and Tyrion
In a fight more interesting than MayPac, Jorah KO’s a fisherman, steals his boat, tosses Tyrion in and sets sail. A day or so later we see them again, and in a true youngest sibling move it would appear that Tyrion’s strategy for survival is to annoy the shit out of Jorah. It works. After being un-gagged, Tyrion’s primary concern is if his kidnapper remembered to pack some wine. Same. Jorah didn’t bring any, further proving he can do absolutely nothing right and Danaerys was right to banish him.
Other than the obvious reasons, not having wine was a bad call because it meant Tyrion was sober enough to use his extreme skills of deduction to figure out who Jorah was. It’s around this time that he also realizes that they are heading in the opposite direction of Westeros.
It only takes about 30 seconds of Jorah talking about Khaleesi for Tyrion to figure out that he’s hung up on her in the way that only a middle aged man can be over a teenage girl (a far too fucking common theme in this show), and then another 10 seconds for Tyrion to shatter his dreams.
Jorah: I will take you back to the 16-year-old girl that I worship and perhaps she will let me stand in her vicinity and urgently whisper her name again
Tyrion: No….just no.
Tyrion calls Jorah out for reeking of 100% desperation and then Jorah knocks him out because that happens to be a sore subject.
Keeping Up with the Baratheons
In the plot twist of the century, this is the episode where we find out that not only is Stannis the better parent, but is also in possession of a real life functioning heart.
While the men of the Night’s Watch train, Lady Baratheon and Stannis are standing off to the side watching Jon Snow, a seemingly popular activity among the people of Castle Black. Stannis’ wife is blubbering about not giving him a son and apologizing for the deformed daughter that they ended up with and Stannis is like “fucking chill, woman.” Melisandre floats over to defend Shireen, which means that the woman who birthed a smoky demon assassin and dropped leeches on Gendry’s dick is more compassionate than Stannis’ wife.
Then Melisandre not so casually reminds Stannis that the last time he left her behind to go to war didn’t end so well for him (Battle of Black Water Bay), so he better take her along to Winterfell. Stannis agrees and asks her what she needs. Her mouth says “to serve my Lord,” but her eyes say “I’m really just trying to bang Jon Snow.”
Later Shireen goes to see Stannis, and with all the unwavering directness that only his child could possess, she point blank asks him if he’s ashamed of her. He pauses far too long before answering, so we’re all expecting a brusque “I’m ashamed of literally anything that can’t fight” –esque answer. That is not what happens.
Apparently when Shireen was an infant, a Dornish trader showed up at Dragonstone (because where else would Stannis live) with a bunch of goods. Among them was a wooden doll dressed in Baratheon colors, and Stannis was like “Hey that’s crazy convenient, I just had a daughter.” So he buys the doll and gives it to Shireen, not knowing that it’s poisoned. She gets Greyscale, a disease that will mar you for life if it doesn’t succeed in killing you, hence half of Shireen’s face looking like The Thing from the Fantastic Four. Everyone told Stannis to ship his doomed daughter off to some fucking island to live out the end of her miserable life, and he essentially told them to go fuck themselves. Instead he brought in every Maester he could get his hands on until she was cured.
He ends his heartwarming story with “you are the Princess Shireen of the House Baratheon and you are my daughter” and then they share a hug that looks like it belonged at the end of an episode of Full House. I’m not crying, you’re crying.
Jon has to write letters to noble families in the North begging for recruits, which is embarrassing but pride won’t fight off the White Walkers. Sam makes him send a letter to Roose Bolton, because despite the treacherous murder of Robb Stark, he is the current Warden of the North.
Melisandre floats in and Sam bails faster than he’s ever moved in his entire life. Turns out she is the third wave of the “Jon Snow Come To Winterfell” campaign, but with a very different approach than Stannis and Davos. Instead of appealing to his ambition or family loyalty, she just takes off her clothes and puts one of her boobs in his hand. 10/10 previous success rate.
Melisandre: Do you feel my heart beating?
Jon Snow: Totally. That’s what I was feeling. What you’re feeling in my pants is also just my heart beating.
She makes some speech about embracing power and creating light and life, but it falls on deaf ears because BOOBS. Seeing that Jon is in no shape for words, Melisandre goes for the tried and true “let’s just have sex” approach. This doesn’t go over as well as the boobs did.
Jon: I can’t have sex with you I swore a vow
Melisandre: * Jim Halpert face *
Turns out Jon is still in love with Ygritte, which is fair seeing as how she died probably like a month ago. Sensing that this isn’t going to go her way, Melisandre puts on her clothes and leaves like she didn’t just get hardcore shut down by a teenage boy who swore celibacy pact. Her parting words: “You know nothing, Jon Snow.” Mic fucking drop.
Jaime and Bronn
Jaime and Bronn are hiding out in the bottom of a merchant ship off the coast of Dorne. Bronn is confused as to why they don’t just roll in guns blazing and even more confused as to why they’re on this doomed mission in the first place.
Bronn: You sure you want to kidnap a Dornish princess to-be?
Jamie: It’s not kidnapping, we’re just rescuing my niece
Bronn: Sure, Jan.
Bronn continues to be on of our favorite characters by not even pretending to believe that Jaime isn’t fucking his sister. He is very aware that Myrcella is his daughter, and that the only reason Jaime is on this mission is to get back in Cersei’s good graces after releasing Tyrion. Turns out that Jaime is not happy with Tyrion over the whole “murdering their father” thing, and vows to kill him if he ever sees him again. Awkward.
Jaime: I want to die in the arms of the woman I love
Bronn: You’re not even trying to be subtle anymore are you?
A bunch of Dornish soldiers arrive, and after trying to pretend they’re shipwrecked sailors from Fleabottom, Bronn murders everyone. He gives Jamie the single job of fighting one guy who was already semi-crushed by a horse. It takes a near death for Jaime to remember that he has a pure gold hand and can probably use it to his advantage. As a thank you for saving their lives Jaime makes Bronn dig all the graves so that no one knows they were there.
Small council meetings seem a lot like sorority exec meetings in that no one actually wants to be there but with the added benefit that they get to drink wine throughout them. The crown is broke af and needs to pay off some debt, but they can only afford about half of what the Iron Bank wants from them.
As the start of her campaign to kill off all of Margaery’s family, Cersei opts to send Lord Tyrell to the Iron Bank to negotiate. He is the Master of Coin after all, so this would have seemed legitimate if she hadn’t been smirking as she sent Meren Trout along for “extra protection.” All that was missing from this scene was a villainous mustache for Cersei to twirl. Deuces, Lord Tyrell.
Next on her busy schedule of slowly dismantling any semblance of order in King’s Landing, Cersei has a meeting with the High Sparrow. He reveals that he doesn’t like wine, which should be strike two in Cersei’s book (the first being that they aren’t blood relatives). It must not bother her that much though, because she makes him the throne’s chosen representative of the Seven and then gives him and army to help uphold order and religion (read: murder dissenters and gays).
Flash to the city, where the Sparrows are running around killing people left and right. They show up to Little Finger’s brothel and begin to torture a patron that they find in the middle of some very gay activity. There’s a half-second dick shot, which is big for Game of Thrones, but it wasn’t Daario’s so no one cared.
Lancel is a full-fledged sparrow now, complete with regrettable forehead carving. He leads a group to arrest Loras, which is ironic because they found him during the 30 minutes a day that he’s not having sex with other men.
Margaery, shockingly, is not chill with her brother being imprisoned. She knows Cersei is behind it because she has a functioning brain. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for baby Tommen.
Margaery: You’re mother did this. Fix it.
Tommen: What?? My mother?? I thought you guys were BFF??
He goes to talk to Cersei, and at this point it’s just sad watching him try to navigate between the women in his life. Cersei reminds him that he is, in fact, the King of Westeros and can get Loras released anytime he likes. So he goes to see the High Sparrow, but is denied entry. His guards are ready to throw down, as are the sparrows, but Tommen is deterred by petty things like violence and leaves.
Tommen: Sorry, but I couldn’t save your brother because people were not very nice when I asked.
Margaery: Oh my god where is Joffrey when you need him.
Tommen: … so no sex tonight?
Sansa is hanging out in the crypts below Winterfell, lighting a candle for her Aunt Lyanna. Baelish appears, probably because his “Sansa is alone and vulnerable in a dark place” senses were tingling. He tells her a fun little anecdote about how Rhaegar started a country-wide war over his aunt, subtly alluding to the fact that he finds things like kidnapping and romance synonymous.
The real reason for this rendezvous: Petyr is going back to King’s Landing. He has been summoned by Cersei and can’t ignore it or risk revealing his true plans. Sansa is not psyched about being left with the Boltons, which is a pretty valid concern since they murdered her mother and brother.
Baelish tells her not to worry, soon Stannis will be there to take back Winterfell, and will probably make her Wardeness of the North once he does. Until then, she just has to seduce and manipulate Ramsey. He ends this not at all uncomfortable pep talk with the creepiest lingering kiss of all time.
Sansa tells him that she will be a married woman by the time he returns which is code for “that is the last time you will ever touch me you sick fuck.”
We finally meet the Sand Snakes, and much to everyone’s disappointment they didn’t break into song or dance once. However, they did kidnap the ship captain who brought Jaime and Bronn to Dorne, so they were kind of busy. Illyria tells them that they can either choose to side with Prince Doran and have peace or avenge their father with her and start a war with the Lannisters. Not surprisingly, they all choose war and then super casually toss a spear through the ship captain’s skull in case we weren’t sure whether they meant business or not.
While Danaerys gazes out over the city she has about zero chance of controlling for another week, Ser Barristan tells her a heartwarming story about her brother Rhaegar sneaking out into the streets of the capitol and singing to the people. They bond over this shared history, which naturally means that Ser Barristan has to die.
Daario is back on screen for max 15 seconds, but it’s enough. His sole job is to inform Khaleesi that the representative of Mereen, Hizdahr zo Loraq, wants to talk to her, which means he probably didn’t need to be in the episode at all but the writer’s knew there would be riots if he didn’t make an appearance. My influence is spreading.
Hizdahr pleads for Danaerys to allow the fighting pits to reopen, because it’s the only thing that gives the former slaves and former masters a common ground. Danaerys refuses, because she’s the bad guy who won’t allow slaves to mutilate each other in the name of sport. What an asshole.
The Sons of Harpy aren’t happy with this decision, or Khaleesi in general, so they lay at trap for the Unsullied. It’s a total blood bath that the Sons of Harpy almost win until Ser Barristan shows up. This decrepit old white man manages to fight off the rest of them with Grey Worm, but not before both of them are seriously injured. The episode ends with both of them falling to the ground. Are they dead?? It’s Game of Thrones, so the odds are high.
Next time a guy turns you down, retaliate by using his recently dead girlfriend’s tagline against him. Works every time.