What’d you think of that!? This post will be all over the place because I can’t contain my thoughts. Let’s start with perhaps the most important development of the episode. The Night King, after launching a magic ice spear, killed one of Dany’s dragons! He then barely missed another one thanks to Dany’s evasive dragon-flying maneuver, she’s good! He is too! The Night King then places his hand on the dead cold dragon and imparts it with White Walker life, whatever that is and that’s a good question. The King himself brought the dragon back and that makes me wonder. Does that mean the dragon becomes a White Walker, err, Flyer? Or, does it mean it simply becomes a ‘White’? Now, there’s a HUGE difference, isn’t there? You’ve seen the whites fight, they are literally hollowed out versions of their former selves and zombie fighting has been rubbish. If the dead dragon is simply a white, that doesn’t seem quite as terrible. Of course, it’s still a force to be reckoned with, as you know, the white giant polar bear was scary and fierce! Now, does the dragon retain its ability to breathe fire if just a white? Considering also, what if, since the King himself brought the dragon back, it becomes one of them, a White Walker (Flyer)!? Yeah, terrifying. On the other hand, you immediately know it can be killed, via dragon glass and or Valyrian steel. Another question, if it’s now a White Walker, does it still breathe fire or some other sort of adaptation? If you’re considering the implications of the White Walkers having a fire-breathing dragon, how do you think they get past The Wall now? You might see the White dragon melting down a section of The Wall, GAME OVER. Or is it?
Note also, there appears to be a network effect among the White Walkers and the dead. When the ranging team comes across the forward scout group, Jon kills a White Walker with his Valyrian sword, causing all the other dead to collapse, except one. Jorah asks Jon about it and Jon thinks it may be because that particular dead was turned by that particular White Walker. Can that even be true? True or not, there’s something at work there and a path forward for future battles. Team South may now know to focus on the White Walkers, as they seem to serve as ‘nodes’ for the Night King. The more of those they can knock-off, the more dead that collapse and stay dead. This also brings me to another question, can the Night King even fight? Also, can he be killed in the same manner? He was created with magic and dragon glass, if you remember, by The Children. If he’s stabbed with dragon glass, what’s it to him? Also, he’s different from the other White Walkers, as he’s formed them with his touch. Will Valyrian steel work on the Night King? We will all find out, NEXT SEASON!
The fallout from the battle ‘Beyond The Wall’ is catastrophic. Dany’s lost dragon becomes a major weapon for the Night King. On the other hand, she still has two dragons and Jon’s fealty. There was a lot of discussion on the ranging trip and perhaps Tormund’s comment about Mance Rayder’s pride getting people killed. You also heard some other things discussed, such as sense of purpose. Again, the ‘meta-game’ being played is one of democratization. Westeros is becoming ‘woke’, to an extent, and people are realizing that perhaps it’s best to form a common defense for the people, as opposed to a monarch. Note Dany and Tyrion’s discussion about succession as well. The problem? How will the fighting come to an end with so many ambitious killers in the game? That’s what we’ll find out. Lastly, the ranging mission was a success based on the objective alone. They can now reveal the zombie to Cersei and all of King’s Landing, something that will surely have a profound impact on everyone except Cersei. Ha! Her scheming may have changed, but her objectives have not.
There was obviously A LOT going on between the ranging expedition and Dany, practically the whole episode, but things are getting more interesting in Winterfell, as duplicitous Littlefinger looks to divide and conquer House Stark. I do still wonder if he’s an agent of Cersei. He doesn’t seem to have a plan beyond attempting to secure the North for himself, which doesn’t seem like much when you really think about it. Littlefinger somehow manages to properly plant Sansa’s old message for Arya’s finding. This creates tension between the sisters, as Arya presses Sansa for double-crossing the family for the Lannisters’ sake, pure treachery to her. Littlefinger also plants the idea into Sansa’s head that Brienne would stand in the way of any sibling in-fighting. What does Sansa do? She sends Brienne, her only non-duplicitous ally (except Arya) to King’s Landing as her emissary. This paves the way for conflict and is another obstacle out of the way for the scheming bastard, Littlefinger. I hate that guy! Now, what did you make of Arya and Sansa’s conversation? Sansa has got to be completely mind-f’d by her returned siblings, right!? What’s all this 3-Eyed Raven and Faceless bullshit these two are talking about and what’s up with Arya being super creepy and murdery and having costume faces in her bag, ‘wtf’!? Only, Sansa wouldn’t say it that way. Nevertheless, their conversation made me think that Arya was vetting Sansa for complicity. I don’t blame her. If I had found that letter, I’d have been heated too. What was really interesting was Arya handing Sansa the dagger after freaking her out, what kind of gesture was that? It’s all very interesting in Winterfell and what is Bran up to? Does he just sit at the tree and ‘trip balls’ all day? Dude needs to get into the fight somehow and perhaps he’s figuring out just how. For Arya, it’s only a matter of time now before she takes another face, all she needs is a reason.
Man, I hope I covered enough here. There was a lot packed into this episode. So, feel free to add your take in the comments. How does all of this come to a head? What will come of the meeting at the ruins in King’s Landing, is that the blown up sept? Will The Hound meet his undead brother again, will the fans get Clegane-Bowl? What will the attendees think of the zombie? Will Dany take her dragons? What will Cersei offer in the deal? Seriously, I’m wondering just what House Lannister has to offer anymore. Granted, not ALL their forces have been decimated, but they are weakened and must now opt for mercenary help. That’s a tough proposition. Why not just take her out and get on with dying fighting the Night King with the rest of Westeros? Also, Sam Tarly will likely save many lives, reveal truths, how soon do we get to that? The show-runners are hurriedly trying to fit all this in, much to the chagrin of some fans. Let me know what you think about all this in the comments.