I will be reviewing the whole of Game Of Thrones (GOT) season 6.
Be warned though, THERE WILL BE SPOILERS
A structure is being built, possibly a temple, by some devout community members who have taken up camp at a scenic place. And we meet Ian McShane’s Ray, a priest of the faith of the Seven who gives us Sandor Clegane back. Turns out, Clegane hadn’t died after all. His hate, presumably for his brother Gregor, kept him going. As is the norm this season, we return to them at the end of the episode.
King’s Landing :
After checkmating the Tyrells and Lannisters last week, the High Sparrow has added another feather to his burgeoning (but as yet invisible) cap – he’s a sex therapist now. As Margaery tries to show off her transformation, the Sparrow asks her to do her duty towards the king and country too. Gullible and horny king Tommen had complained to his good teacher the High Sparrow about her not, er, resuming the activities. One could have been mistaken to think the Sparrow was trying to hit on her (he puts his hand on her lap) but then he asks her to persuade Lady Olenna to change her sinner ways.
So, faithful convert Marge goes to Olenna, accompanied by Septa Unella. This, and Marge’s newfound faith exasperates Olenna. She asks Olenna to leave for Highgarden immediately. We are led to genuinely believe that Marge has turned until she stealthily hands Olenna a paper having a sketch of a rose. What was that? Never mind, well-acted, Marge (and Natalie Dormer)!
Cersei comes to Olenna to join hands in the larger good. But Olenna is her usual lyrically-dissing self, blasting her for bringing the Faith into the city leading to this fatal predicament. Rather than teaming-up with Cersei (which I think would have provided us with some awesome back-and-forth dialogues) she hits another birdie, telling Cersei how beleaguered she is, and how that’s “the only joy I can find in all this misery.”
The North :
Sansa, Jon and Davos are on their army-gathering mission. While the wildlings are rallied rather easily, thanks to Tormund and Wun-Wun, House Mormont is tougher. As Sansa and Jon try to use flattery, little Lady Lyanna (named after you-know-who) backhands both of them. She then keeps on hitting ace after ace till Davos breaks her serve and holds his own to love, telling her how the real threat is from the White Walkers (“and make no mistake my Lady, the dead are coming!”). I love Davos’ accent! So the Lady keeps faith with House Stark and gives them all of 62 fighters. Anticlimactic, yeah! 😀
House Glover, which also pledged allegiance to the Starks once, refuses to support them now. Robb’s war took away Lord Glover’s brother, wife and kids and he’s understandably unwilling to sacrifice more. So finally Jon and co. have 2000 wildlings, 200 Hornwoods, 143 Mazins and 62 Mormonts. Total? 2405 fighters. Jon wants to attack immediately but Sansa wants more men. The problem is, where will they get the men? The Blackfish has his own problems. Still, Sansa Stark writes a letter to be Raven-delivered.
Jaime and Bronn have marched with 8000 soldiers to find a pathetic siege, courtesy of the Freys. Jaime wants Bronn at the head of the army. Bronn whines about the castle and the highborn wife he never received. Jaime starts to tell him how Lannisters always pay their debts but he breaks in, “Don’t f–ing say it.” The scene is hilarious.
The Blackfish is back too, determined to keep his castle and unafraid to call the Freys’ bluff when they threaten to kill Edmure. Jaime bullies the Walder Frey’s son, who’s also named Walder, and takes charge of the siege. He wants to have a parley with the Blackfish. Bronn cuts him to size, showing that hehasnt lost one ounce of his condescending humour despite his long absence from the show.
The Blackfish refutes Jaime’s claim that the War of the Five Kings is long over. He is prepared to see out the siege, with his fortified walls and provisions for 2 years. Seeing as Jaime is the more central character, I don’t think the Blackfish is going to live long although I do support him. Hopefully Jaime will have a change of heart in the next episode, courtesy of Brienne.
Somewhere in Essos :
The Ironborn are enjoying their last night on land in a pub with lots of escorts. Yara is in on the fun too, enjoying some woman-with-woman action. She teases Theon about it all but then, in a very Ironborn way of therapy, asks him to drink the beer and bring out the real Theon so they could make a deal with the Dragon queen and take back the Iron Islands. Her therapy works as we see this Broken Man (yes, that’s a reference to the episode title) gather himself together. Theon Greyjoy is back, no more Reek-ing now.
Arya books her passage back to Westeros in a ship and is enjoying the CGI view of the city’s gates when the Waif comes disguised as an old woman and stabs her repeatedly. Arya somehow manages to get her off and jumps into the river, getting out later in a busy street where no one is ready to help A Girl. Since she is going to be in the next episode, it’d be interesting to see how she saved herself.
Back to the Riverlands :
Ray is telling his own backstory to the gathering and how it’s never too late for anyone to come back from their thieving and murdering ways (we know that here he’s saying these things to Sandor). Sandor is listening intently and seems like he wants to leave his old life, the life of the Broken Man, behind when three riders from the Brotherhood Without Banners, who follow the Lord of the Light, come asking for protection money. Ray politely refuses and they go back, but not before threatening him.
Sandor wants Ray to fight when need be but he’s done with it. Later, as Sandor is drinking some Beer and cutting wood in the forest, he hears screams and comes to the camp to find all the members killed, including Ray who has been hanged from the structure the group was making. Sandor knows there is no peace for him in this life and picks up an axe to take revenge. Next episode, he will take his revenge and by the penultimate episode, expect him to be back in King’s Landing for the CleganeBowl.
This episode, while not delivering any shocks, did give us a big character back and advanced the storyline for the big battle in the North and the confrontation in King’s Landing. The chat between Marge and the Sparrow was, for a change, not what we’ve come to dread, and that’s relieving. Riverrun is the most hazardous place in all of Westeros right now so good luck to all who are there. I’m most concerned for Arya. She finally got out of that death cult only to be stabbed like Jon and Robb. No, no, no, a girl can’t die this uselessly. Kick some Waif butt in the next episode, my Lady!
What do you think of the episode? Share your thoughts and theories in the comments section. Thanks for reading.
Images Credit : HBO.