Game of Thrones: Season 7 Episode 5 – Eastwatch (Recap & Review)

Please note: there are FULL spoilers for the fifth episode of season 7, as well as all preceding episodes.

Bronn pulls Jamie Lannister from the river, some distance downstream from the battlefield. Bronn says that Dragon’s weren’t part of his mercenary deal, and that if Jamie was going to tell Cersei about the dragons, he might have better luck jumping back into the river.

Daenerys has rounded up the remaining Lannister troops and tells them that she is not there to destroy their cities, burn down their homes and make orphans of their children (unbelievably, with a straight face). She is not here to murder, she says. She offers the prisoners a choice: bend the knee, and join her or refuse… and die. Tyrion is not thrilled at the options, but the soldiers all begin to take a kness, until only two are left standing: Randyll and Dickon Tarly. Randyll cannot believe that his warriors will bow to a foreign invader, and Tyrion suggests Danaerys send Randyll to The Wall. Randyll reminds Tyrion and Daenerys that she is not the Queen and cannot make such demands. Randyll and Dickon are burned alive by Drogon, at Daenerys’ command.

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What is it about dragons that make for such good screenshots?

At King’s Landing, Jamie reports to Cersei. Cersei is not impressed with Daenerys’ dragons, and promises there will be a war. In Winterfell, Bran Stark is warging into a raven as he sees the entire Army of the Dead, and the Night King, marching towards Eastwatch. He says that Winterfell needs to send ravens to everyone who will listen.

Returning to Dragonstone, Daenerys and Drogon land in front of Jon Snow, who was brooding alone over the cliff face. Drogon senses something in Jon, and allows the King in the North to pet him gently, much to Daenerys’ surprise, or intrigue. Daenerys asks Jon about Davos words upon their meeting – that Jon took a knife to the heart for his people – but before Jon is forced to explain, who should interrupt but one Jorah Mormont, cured of his greyscale. He re-pledges his allegiance to Daenerys, and seems to earn Jon’s respect.

In Oldtown, Sam Tarly (unbeknownst to him, the last of his name – unless he still has a sister?) hears that Bran has sent ravens, and confirms the story to the maesters, who dismiss his story as fiction. Simultaneously, in the Dragonstone throne room, Varys and Tyrion discuss the same message from Winterfell. Jon is surprised that Bran is even still alive, and the Dragonstone council are at their wits end on what to do about the Night King, and Cersei’s involvement. Tyrion suggests bringing one wight to Cersei, as proof of their claims, so Jon, Davos and Jorah plan a hunting trip.

Back in Winterfell, the lords of the North are not taking well to Jon’s cavorting with the Dragon Queen, and Sansa is not sure how to handle their displeasure. Arya later confides that she is not proud of Sansa for simply listening to their attacks on Jon, and Arya suggests perhaps those who voice their displeasure should be beheaded, much to Sansa’s supposed disgust. Arya does some sneaking of her own around the castle, and sees a shady deal go down between Littlefinger and a handful of lesser men. It appears that Littlefinger has a scroll, written by Sansa before her betrothal to Joffrey, begging their brother Robb to pledge his loyalty to the then-Lannister King.

Davos and Tyrion arrive by small boat on the shores of King’s Landing. Using a secret pathway, they enter the city. At the same time, Bronn takes Jamie into the catacombs beneath the city, ostensibly for a training exercise, but Jamie soons comes face to face with Tyrion. Tyrion says he knew Jamie would not meet with him, but he needs Jamie’s help to plan an armistice with Cersei oin behal fof Daenerys. In the King’s Landing marketplace, Davos meets an old friend: Gendry Baratheon, working as an unassuming balcksmith, right under Cersei’s nose, as it were. Gendry jumps at the chance to leave the city, not without a quick run in with the guards on the shore.

Jamie meets with Cersei and admits his meeting with their younger brother, and Cersei is not phased, saying she knows every detail of the city. SHe also has some news of her own: she is pregnant, with another sure-to-be golden haired incest spawn (editors note: my words – don’t tell the Queen.). Back at Oldtown, Sam grows restless of his perceived lack of study to become a proper maester, due in part to constant interuptions from Gilly, who is reading an interesting book detailing a secret wedding between Rhaegar Targareyan and Lyanna Stark. Sam misses this crucial plot development, and so he, Gilly and her son, leave.

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I wish this was the entire final season of the show.

At Dragonstone, Gendry and Jon meet for the first time, before Jon, Jorah, Gendry and Davos leave for Eastwatch. Upon their arrival, they meet Tormund (who is personally saddened they did not bring “the big woman”, meaning Brienne). In the cellar of the keep, the five men meet three prisoners: The Hound, Thoros of Myr and Berric Dondarrion. The eight men decide to team up, head beyond the wall, crack a few cold ones and capture a wight.

+ I guess it’s official that Jon Snow is Jon Targareyan? It was certainly implied as such. That’s a big reveal for sure, but we’ve been hinted and implied this so much lately it is almost taken for granted. I guess some real confirmation is nice, since it would give him more claim to the throne than Dany or even Gendry, if we want to get technical (though I won’t even try and pretend I know how this medieval lineage stuff works)
+ we finally caught back up with the Hound and the Brotherhood, albeit inside a prison cell. I believe this is the first time Jon and The Hound have been on screen together, at least since the first season and possibly ever
+ not to be outdone, we finally catch back up with (drum roll, please) Gendry Baratheon, the last living bastard son of Big Bobby B, who has been working in King’s Landing all this time. It’s been a few seasons, now, and I couldn’t help but think that he looked a bit like Sam Worthington and Michael Fassbender’s love child
+ I find myself strangely more and more on Cersei’s side. Randyll’s speech, although somewhat hypocritical, certainly had some good points, and right now Cersei certainly is the lesser of two evils, in my mind. Though interestingly, perhaps, Cersei not caring that the world would know she has an incest baby sure is something a Targareyan would think
+ I look forward to the facts of this war coming out. Even though Sam wasn’t close with his father, I can’t imagine him being happy that his bromance lover, Jon, is all buddy buddy (and perhaps related to) the Dragon Queen who burned them alive

– the logistics of the river from the end of the previous episode were bad enough, but the depth aside, this still didn’t make much sense. How was Bronn able to pull Jamie up from the river, and himself, AND get so far away to as not be spotted coming up for air? I’m starting to think this show isn’t based on true events
– I understand that travel is boring to watch in a show like this, but Davos going form Dragonstone to King’s Landing, back to Dragonstone and then to Eastwatch in the space of a single episode means that so much could and should have happened in the other major areas (Winterfell and King’s Landing)
– no Brienne or Pod, or Massandei. Brienne would have made a good wight hunter, you’d think. I guess she is needed at Sansa’s side, though. Missandei not chilling with Jon before Dany returned could have been nice
– Where is Theon? Isn’t he still on Dragonstone?

> Littlefinger is as good as dead, now. I’m calling it: Arya will kill him, perhaps wearing her mother’s face

Final thoughts: This was a very story heavy episode, which I understand can be divisive, but for me fell too far on the ‘boring’ side of things. A lack of anything unique – reunions, battles, etc – meant this was mostly an exposition episode. It seems to be the pattern so far that episodes will shove all the good stuff into one episodes (episodes 2 and 4) and all the dialogue, witty banter or what have you in the others (episodes 1, 3 and now 5).

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