Well this episode certainly picked it up from last week. In case anyone had forgotten how much violence and nudity this series actually has, Episode 2 sets out to remind you. Not only that, but also why nobody can ever have anything nice or share with others. Seriously, I forgot how infuriating watching these people act like children with shiny toys can be. I really enjoyed this week's episode, and I hope all the others follow suit and improve. The only real thing I found lacking was the third act really saved it from being a typical episode, I hope the others have some great moments in them to save us from spending 15 minutes at a time in one place while someone tries to convince another person why their right and everyone else is wrong. From the previews for next week's episode however, I should think we're in for a treat everyone's been waiting years for. There's a lot I want to look at this week, specifically some new theories and speculation that been floating around involving, well, pretty much every party at this point.
Normally, I don't really care to much for the political talk, but this episode had me extremely invested because I for one am a huge sucker for military fantasy. I'll take the politics involving battles and invading armies over what everyone thinks of a royal wedding any day. Unfortunately for me, and probably any viewer who enjoys that particular genre, it made me guess with quite a bit of ease at what was going to happen (I just didn't expect it to happen this episode!). So Deanery is not going to take Kings landing by force she intends to basically use typical siege tactics involving the Tyrell and Dornish armies so the people hate Cersei and don't witness a Dothraki or unsullied invasion causing them to rise against Deanery in misplaced nationalism. A solid plan. Sieges suck for the people it's happening to and turning against the leaders is generally expected. Dany intends to use the Dothraki and Unsullied to wipe out Casterly Rock while this is going on, effect cutting off the money and natural resources to Kings Landing in one giant takeover. The problem, that I imagine most familiar with militaristic goals in fantastical settings could easily predict, is in the execution. Land armies walking over land to a battle? Easy. Your navy sailing from one places to another, pick up your land units, and sail back without a hitch? Yeah right. I figured that's where the plan would fail the moment it was suggested. No way could they cover that much distance twice over with no Dragons or marine unites and have everything be hunky dory.
And it wasn't! I knew the plan would fail what I did not expect was for it to happen so quickly. Euron of course intercepts the fleet moving to Dorne and utterly annihilates it, killing two sand snakes and capturing Yara and Ellaria (along with one other sand snake). Before we talk about the implications here, let me just take a moment to say I'm really enjoying Euron's part so far this season. Just this one episode was a huge step up from what we've been getting, and that was the most badass entrance I think any character has ever made into battle (seriously, killing a guy while your ganged gangplank is boarding the entire ship? Come on!). Now here's where the questions arise. Euron told Cersei he was going to get a gift for her last episode. At first I drew it up to chance that he happened to be crossing a known waterway at the same time as Yara but how coincidental that Yara, Theon, and the Sandsnakes were all there at the same time. There's been some speculation that perhaps Deanerys council isn't so private, and a lot of fingers are being pointed at Olenna. She has direct access to Tarly down in Kings Landing where Euron had temporarily made port. It's not out of the realm of possibility that whole Daenerys was looking at Varys for a sign of betrayal, Olenna let it slip about that Danys ships were on the move. It does seem a little coincidental that now Deanerys is quite a bit more hard pressed to simply invade kings landing since such a vital part of her siege tactics relied on Dorne. And that's exactly what Olenna wants. Sure, it could be chance Euron came across the literal VIP ship a few days after it set out on a route that leads away from Dragonstone, but the misdirection this shows writing tends to have is just enough to lend credit to a betrayal theory.
Things aren't going so great in the North either. Sansa and Jon refuse to get along, and I'm honestly disappointed that I'm already fed up with Sansa's shit. Again. For the seventh season in a row. I don't know how Jon could spell it out anymore for her: They need Dragonglass; Dragonstone has Dragonglass; He has an invitation to Dragonstone. Sansa's line of "we need you in the North" is absolutely rediculous. I can't believe how she's thinking so little picture and the most egregious crime is she's undermining Jon in front of all the northern houses and making them agree with her. Do I think she'll make a great ruler in Jon's stead? Yes absolutely. Do I think she needs to really get her head in the game and come up with something better than hiding behind the walls of Winterfell? Yes absolutely. Jon's literally been calling meetings and telling everyone his plans then going "okay anyone got any better ideas" and the answer is always "No but I'd rather do nothing".
That aside I very much enjoyed the parallels between Ned and Jon choking Littlefinger (who by the way couldn't be happier right now with all this distrust) and telling him to stay away from Cat and Sansa respectively. It hurt after seeing Jon stick up for Sansa to have to wonder if Sansa is going to cross Jon in the end and make it all for naught. At least the North is smarter than most and is at least acknowledging the real threat to the Seven Kingdoms. Quick aside: did anyone else catch how Tyrion left out the "bend the knee" part in the message? He knows what the North is about.
Everyone else didn't have too much screen time this week, but I felt what they did have really made an impact on the plot, so really it was a great use of their time at the very least. Tarly being convinced by Jaimie to fight for Cersei is certainly interesting for reasons stated earlier. I wonder if Sam is going to get kicked out of the Citadel for going, like, a month before saying screw every rule ever. That puss to soup scene was the most repulsive thing I've seen on this show, and that's saying a lot! Greyworm and Missandei final had their romantic scene and now I'm 100 percent sure one if not both are going to die this season. Arya is being as awesome as usual and channeling her inner Hound with the hot pie line. If Sandor said that I wouldn't have batted an eye so hearing it from Arya and them bringing up her time with him was a great parallel to where her personality is at. The hotpie reunion was sweet and pretty humanizing for this show. And of course the Nymeria reunion was as sad as I knew it was going to be. I did however love the symbolism of Nymeria and Arya no longer being lone wolves and choosing to go with the pack, Arya to Winterfell and Nymeria with her literal pack.
This episode had me feeling great going out of it. This encapsulated everything I love about Game of Thrones. There's a little bit of politics, a lot of mistrust, romance, and action! Oh Theon, you dissapoint me. But I agree with the sentiment there wasn't much he can do in that situation except die valiantly. Besides I'm pretty sure now he's going to get picked up by a new player in the game, one who just itching to swing a big hammer down on some people who need hamerin'. I'm really craving the next episode already, and it's good the show left us wanting more. What's Danearys going to do now? How did Euron know where Yara was? How will Arya react to Sansa and the situation in the North? Is Cersei going to die next episode? Please let it be Cersei's going to die next episode. And finally, the million dollar question: WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN WHEN JON AND DANEARYS MEET!?
Certainly there's a lot to look forward to and I'll be waiting right there with everyone for the next episode for Game of Thrones!