This article was co-written with Meg Shields
Well, well, Winterfell that was a doozy of time wasn’t it?
Believe it or not, we got some things right. Melisandre showed up. Not with knights of Volantis like we thought but with the fire equivalent of that river prayer Arwen does in Fellowship of the Ring. If a side-by-side doesn’t already exist by the time this article hits, give it a week or so. We were also right about the crypts being a deathtrap but a child could have told you that a graveyard is just about the worst place to hunker down during a zombie apocalypse. No notable family members made any undead cameos, though perhaps that’s to be expected what with the lack of freshness. Which is to say nothing of the logistics of Ned’s head bereft from his shoulders. We hoped that Ghost would have a larger role to play but alas, more bit parts for our fluffy albino boy. But at least he lived! (He’s in the episode 4 promo for a hot sec.)
As far as death, we can confirm the fate of Theon “die doing a heroism” Greyjoy. Rest in peace, problematic-but-trying-very-hard salt brother. We also called Beric kicking the bucket, though we admittedly did not foresee the “save Arya at all costs” circumstances. We did see that his sacrifice would have something to do against winning against the Night King, we just didn’t predict Arya doing a Hail Mary would end up being the thing to do the trick.
We thought Grey Worm, Tormund, Bran, and Podrick would kick it but with no evidence to the contrary, they seem to be fine. On the flip side, our predicted plot armor held up for Arya, Gendry, Sandor, and Sansa. And finally, neither Jorah’s new Valyrian blade nor Arya’s tricky spear did some damage but not in any particular plot significant ways. As mentioned, Arya did end up being the MVP, but she did the deed with that Valyrian steel dagger that’s been traveling around Westeros since it nearly killed Bran in season 1 instead.
But, anywho, we’re back at it again with our tinfoil hats to bring you our best guesses for what’s up next for Westeros.
THE NIGHT IS DARK AND FULL OF SPOILERS IF WE’VE DONE OUR JOBS WELL.
Not In Winterfell
Cersei will have pulled some shenanigans while all this Northern stuff’s been poppin’ off
Wine mom looks particularly smug during the promo and she has good reason. We’ve had our backs to King’s Landing for the last two episodes, meaning she’s had plenty of time to get up to no good. Surely she hasn’t just been making fun of Euron and sipping Dornish red this whole time (but seriously though, is she pregnant or not?). Two episodes would give her plenty of time to lay the groundwork for “If I Lose I’m Taking You All Down With Me” aka Cersei going full Mad King and lighting up King’s Landing with subterranean wildfire.
Yara will deal with the Iron Islands
Named characters might not have fared as poorly as many feared in the Battle for the Dawn, but Daenerys’ army has been significantly reduced. Reinforcements are needed, and considering last we saw of Yara she was headed to the Iron Islands to sort some shit out, we’re anticipating at least a brief scene or two in Pyke in which she sorts said shit out, because episode 5 will be another Miguel Sapochnik special, meaning the Winterfell crowd need some reinforcements ASAP. We’re not saying Yara’s their only hope, only, yeah, we pretty much are.
Back in Winterfell
Gendry’s parentage will come into play
So, based on the promo for episode 71, there is more Gendrya content ahead, which means it’s going to gain more plot relevance. Our money is on Gendry’s Baratheon status becoming common knowledge shortly after his relationship with Arya goes public—and on Bran being the one to spill the beans. That does, after all, appear to be the Three-Eyed Raven’s main purpose in life—less memory-holder of Westeros than all-knowing gossip column (Hedda Hopper’s ghost is so jealous). Maybe that’s where he went during his long greenseeing trip last episode; watching someone, somewhere, get lucky. In any case, regarding Gendrya, we’re predicting Sansa being supportive (unless she learns exactly what they did on top of her beloved food stores, but we digress), Jon being shook, Sandor being like “I could have told you that like 5 years ago,” and Davos shipping it like FedEx. In terms of Gendry being a Baratheon, we are predicting Daenerys not taking it well. Especially considering her biggest fan Jorah is dead, her lover Jon Snow is now also a competitor for the Iron Throne, and her father’s killer Jaime Lannister managed to survive and is still residing under the same roof as she is. That said, Arya now has serious clout thanks to the whole “I just saved the world” thing, so Gendry should be fine. For now.
Now that Jon doesn’t have a “Battle for Winterfell” to run away from his problems, Daenerys will successfully confront him about his claim, and his being her nephew
Jon would rather deal with an undead horde than his personal life. Unfortunately for Jon, the zombies have vanished (literally) which means he has to face his greatest fear: uncomfy conversations. He’s like the dad driving the minivan who gets overwhelmed when people yell at him. If we’re being honest, there’s more of a chance of Daenerys airing her fears about Jon being a throne-competitor than them remarking on their accidental incest. Or hey, who knows, maybe Jon will avoid drama for an episode and get to take a nap.
Couples will debrief – a.k.a. The “you made it!” to ep. 69’s “we might not make it”
There are apology tours, reunion tours, and couple check in tours. We have a sneaking suspicion every pair is going to get some time in the sun next week, so get your bingo cards ready!
On that note: Jamie and Brienne. It’s time.
All right, you two stop dragging your feet. Jamie’s got to die a hero’s death in a couple of episodes so we need him to achieve full-blown redemption status by having sex with someone who is not his twin sister. You know. That classic good guy milestone. (Seriously though Jaime, just go ask Arya for advice. Or Podrick. We get that you’re bad at this but there are resources available to you. Use them).
Some people need to talk (who haven’t yet)
- Arya and Daenerys: These two have yet to actually have a conversation, and especially now that Arya just saved the world it feels like Daenerys will likely realize that it might be worth her while to introduce herself to the other Stark sister.
- Sandor and Sansa: The dynamic between Sandor and Sansa was too much of a season 2 fan favorite for the writers not to have them talk, and considering episode 5 will be the second big battle, next week seems like the best time to do that.