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Recap / Game of Thrones S6E10: "The Winds of Winter"

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In King's Landing, Cersei, Tommen, Margaery and the High Sparrow prepare for the trial. Loras is summoned, and people fill up the central chamber in the Great Sept of Baelor. Grand Maester Pycelle is summoned away from the trial by one of Qyburn's "little birds," missing Ser Loras's confession. Instead of going to trial, Loras admits his guilt, renounces his titles and inheritance and joins the Faith Militant. But no one from the Red Keep actually comes to the sept: not Cersei, sipping wine in her black dress; not Tommen, detained in his room by the Mountain; and not Grand Maester Pycelle, who is murdered by an entire flock of little birds wielding knives.
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As Cersei continues to not arrive at the sept, Margaery grows suspicious of her absence, certain the queen mother is planning something, and urges the High Sparrow to dissolve the proceedings. Instead, the High Sparrow sends Lancel to escort Cersei to the sept. Unfortunately, Lancel is distracted by the sight of another one of those little birds. The boy leads Lancel to the darkness under the Great Sept and then stabs him in the back, leaving Lancel to look in wonder at what's surrounding him: thousands of barrels with green glowing liquid leaking out of them. Remember how Tyrion mentioned, last episode, the wildfire caches that Jaime says Mad King Aerys buried all over the city? Here's one of them. And, even better, there's candles in a Vapor Trail of wildfire, slowly burning down. Lancel, deprived of his legs, struggles towards it. He is working up some spittle (he can't even risk blowing them out) when they burn down. The Great Sept of Baelor explodes in a blaze of green fire, and Cersei watches in satisfaction as everyone in King's Landing who has ever vexed her—the High Sparrow, Ser Kevan Lannister, Lord Mace Tyrell, Queen Margaery Tyrell, Ser Loras Tyrell, Lancel Lannister—is incinerated. She has full and complete control over King's Landing, and with it the Iron Throne. She even has Septa Unella chained up in a basement and Cersei gives her a bit of Laser-Guided Karma (waterboarding her with wine, demanding she confess, intoning "Shame, shame") before turning her over to the tender care of Ser Gregor Clegane.

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There is only one unexpected casualty: Tommen, seeing the green blaze and the destruction, walks away from the window, taking off his crown. And then walks back to it. And then walks through it. Cersei is shown his body by Qyburn. She orders his body cremated, and his ashes buried where the sept was so he can be with his family who are (...were) buried there.

At the Twins, the Freys and Lannisters celebrate their victory over the Tullys at Riverrun. A few serving women make eyes at Jaime, but the Kingslayer steers them in Bronn's direction. Walder Frey congratulates Jaime on their victory, saying they're the same now, having both killed kings. Jaime replies acidly that if the Lannisters have to keep bailing out the Freys, he's of no use to them.

At Oldtown, Sam and Gilly finally reach their destination. They gaze upon the Hightower with awe upon their first sight of the city. At the Citadel, The Maester whom they meet is unhappy at Sam's "irregular" arrival, as they had not been notified of Maester Aemon's death. Sam is led into their library, filled with hundreds of books. Sam is awed by and delighted with it.

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At Winterfell, Jon reminisces about his past times there to Melisandre before Ser Davos enters. Ser Davos furiously confronts Melisandre with Shireen's toy stag. He demands that she confess what was done with her. She admits Shireen was burned at the stake as a sacrifice. Davos, naturally, is enraged and denounces the Lord of Light when she says it was his will, accusing Melisandre of leading Stannis on about being the Lord's Chosen. Melisandre protests she didn't lie, she was wrong...which Davos counters by asking her how many died because of that mistake? He requests permission from Jon to execute her for the murder. Melisandre, however, notes that she can help them win the war against the Night King and his army. Jon says she must ride south, and will be hanged for murder if she ever returns. Davos adds to it the promise that he would do it himself if she does. Jon watches as she rides away into the distance through the snow. Sansa apologizes for not telling him of Petyr Baelish and the Knights of the Vale. They must trust each other, he says, and she agrees.

In Dorne, Lady Olenna meets with Ellaria Sand and the Sand Snakes to ally with them after Cersei's murder of her family. Olenna doesn't bother to hide her contempt for them and makes it plain that with her family's future in ashes, it's not survival she wants. Ellaria promises her revenge and justice. And when Lady Olenna asks how they plan to deliver this, it's Varys who provides the answer: Fire and Blood.

In Meereen, Daario tells Daenerys her fleet is almost ready to sail, but wonders how the Dothraki will cope with the sea. Daenerys tells him he will stay in Meereen to keep the peace while she conquers Westeros. She reminds Daario that ruling Westeros will require making alliances, and that the best way to do that is by marrying. He, as her lover, would not be welcome, and will be left to keep the peace while the citizens elect their own leaders in the Bay of Dragons, as they can hardly call it Slaver's Bay after she freed all the slaves and slew the treacherous Masters with her children. Daario proclaims his love for her, imploring that she bring him along, even if it must be as a "mistress". Daenerys gently refuses him. The two exchange farewells. Afterward, Tyrion wonders how Daario took it, and says she did what was necessary. He asks if she's frightened of their sailing to conquer Westeros, and says it's good when Daenerys indicates yes. Daenerys tells him that what frightens her is she felt nothing in leaving Daario. Tyrion tells her that, after years of cynicism that rose from seeing what befell those who put their faith in something, he now believes in her. Daenerys names him as her Hand, and Tyrion kneels before her, overcome with emotion.

Back at The Twins, Lord Walder sits down to eat, attended by one of the serving women whom Bronn and Jaime noticed before. She places a slice of meat pie before him. Lord Walder doesn't recognize her, but still expects her to know where his sons are. She explains that Lame Lothar and Black Walder are here, in the pie. As Lord Walder peels off the crust to reveal a finger, the serving woman peels off her face. It's Arya, and she's pleased to announce that the last thing Lord Walder will see before he dies is a Stark smiling down at him. Lord Walder dies of a slit throat, in the same room and manner that Lady Catelyn Stark did three seasons ago.

In the godswood of Winterfell, Petyr approaches Sansa, apologizing if he's interrupted her prayers. She announces that she's done with praying, as it does her no good. Petyr says everything he has done was to gain the Iron Throne, with Sansa at his side. However, Sansa withdraws from him. He says she should rally support from the Northern lords, as they will follow her, and not Jon.

Beyond the Wall, Benjen leaves Bran and Meera in a godswood, which is protected with ancient spells that prevent wights from entering it. Bran goes into another vision, seeing his father in the past at the Tower of Joy. This time, however, he follows him in. Ned goes into a room where Lyanna is waiting, bleeding into the covers of her bed. Despite her big brother's promises, she knows she's dying, but there is one last thing she must do... As Bran watches, she whispers something to Ned, saying he has to protect "him" and "promise me, Ned". Then the sound of a baby crying is heard and one of the women attending Lyanna hands a dark-haired infant with brown eyes — Lyanna's son — to a stunned Ned, who takes his infant nephew in his arms. Bran gasps as he realises the child's identity and the sacrifice his father made out of love for his younger sister.

In the great hall of Winterfell, that same infant — today called Jon Snow — presides over a gathering of the remaining strength of the North. Many of them are unhappy at the idea of allying with the Wildlings. Jon replies that they have proven themselves true friends on the battlefield, and the real war is still coming. Lady Mormont rises to rebuke the lords who refused the call to fight with Jon, despite the atrocities of the Boltons. She calls for the lords all to support Jon as the king in the North, regardless of him being a bastard. Lord Manderly supports this, and pledges fealty to him. The others swiftly follow, Lord Glover apologizing that he did not help them. They hail him as the King in the North together with drawn swords, and soon the entire hall has knelt in fealty beside them. Sansa looks at her half-brother with a proud smile, but her smile fades when she notices Petyr looking on from the side, grimacing, up to no good.

Bronn and Jaime return to King's Landing to find smoke still rising where the Great Sept stood. In the throne room of the Red Keep, Cersei is declared queen by Qyburn, himself adorned with the Hand of the King's badge, and then crowned. She and Jaime trade ambiguous looks.

In the Bay of Dragons, Daenerys's fleet departs. She has assembled one heck of a Multinational Team: the Dothraki, the Ironborn, the Unsullied at her back, her dragons overhead, and Tyrion and Varys at her side, the latter having brought fleets with Martell and Tyrell sigils on their sails. Theon, having come a long way to reclaiming his true identity, looks up with pride from the deck of an Ironborn ship at a flag bearing his family sigil. As a whole, the armada set their courses west, their destination the Seven Kingdoms.

In other news, during the scene in Winterfell Sansa tells Jon that a white raven has arrived from the Citadel. Winter has come.


This episode contains the following tropes:

  • 24-Hour Armor: The Lannister soldiers wear their full armor when feasting at The Twins. Given how the Frey's previous dinner parties have ended, they'd be foolish not to.
  • Accidental Pun: Tommen's suicide unintentionally creates a Visual Pun on the capital of the Seven Kingdoms (he made a literal King's Landing).
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: In the books Lord Wyman Manderly is so massively fat that he has been nicknamed Lord Too-Fat-to-Sit-a-Horse by his peers, while on the show he is considerably leaner and more martial looking.
  • Adaptational Badass: A relatively minor thing, but at the end, Daenerys' Dothraki are shown to be handling themselves quite well on board her ships; in the books, Dothraki, having never sailed before, tend to be prone to massive sea sickness even on relatively calm waters.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Varys, by virtue of not having Pycelle and Kevan stabbed to death by a gang of murderous children.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Qyburn is the one who turned a bunch of children into knife-wielding murderers instead of Varys. He was, however, Cersei's Torture Technician and fantasy-Mengele, so it's by degree rather than kind.
  • Adaptational Wimp:
    • In the books, Wyman Manderly secretly plotted revenge against the Freys and Boltons for what they did to his king and son in the Red Wedding, going so far as to bake three Freys into pastries and agreeing to join the fight against the Boltons on the promise that a Stark would take the throne. In the show, he never answered the call to arms due to not wanting to see any more members of his family die, and Arya serves up some Frey pie in his stead.
    • In the books, Pycelle is shown to be actually very good at his job, especially when he's not trying to push an agenda; Kevan Lannister is effectively a very good administrator. It's due to both that the crown is showing some semblance of stability and it's the main reason Varys kills them to destabilize the regime. In the show, Pycelle tends more towards cronyism and is killed due to the perceived treason towards Cersei, as the governing of the kingdom heavily relied on Kevan and Lady Olenna; Kevan himself is in a more precarious position in the show.
  • Adult Fear: There's plenty of in this episode, perhaps more than your average season finale...
    • To Mace Tyrell, helplessly watching his utterly broken son and heir renouncing his lands and status to join the Faith Militants, being scarred as a rite of initiation, and there's nothing he can do at that point.
    • Olenna left King's Landing believing her granddaughter still had everything under her control. Instead, most of Olenna's family is dead and House Tyrell is extinct since she is an old woman and a Tyrell by marriage.from the books... 
    • Tommen's suicide would have been one to Cersei one season ago, but since she already crossed the Despair Event Horizon, her Sanity Slippage is now complete as she watches her son's corpse.
    • Although it was 21 years ago, Ned fought a bloody war to rescue his sister, Lyanna. When he finally finds her, she is dying anyway after having given birth to her son by Prince Rhaegar Targaryen, the man King Robert Baratheon hates more than anyone. Robert had anyone with Targaryen blood slaughtered, including children. Lyanna's last request to her brother is to keep her son safe, particularly from Robert, meaning he has to carry this burden forever and Ned does so. He raises and loves his sister’s son as his own child, spending the rest of his life protecting him, all the while guarding one of the most dangerous secrets in Westeros. He risks high treason against King Robert: endangering himself, his nephew and the rest of the family, to keep this giant secret so he can save his sister's only child;
    • For Lyanna herself, dying of childbirth bleeding is slow and painful, with her son's future being uncertain, because Rhaegar is dead and his forces beaten. Her last hope is her brother, who is Robert's closest friend and has been fighting against Rhaegar all this time. He has accepted to protect her son, but how and if he will succeed, she would never know.
  • Age Cut: Bran's vision ends with a close up of Lyanna's newborn son as his dark eyes open. The next scene is of those same brown eyes of Jon Snow, 21 years later as he sits in the great hall of Winterfell.
  • Age Lift: Lord Cley Cerwyn was 14 at the time of his death in the books.
  • Alas, Poor Villain:
    • Pycelle. Though far from an endearing character, getting shanked by a half-dozen children is not a pretty way to go, and being the first victim of Cersei's murderous regime elicits some sadness — if not sympathy — for the man.
    • Septa Unella wasn't exactly a pleasant person, but it's hard not to be horrified by hearing her scream in horror as she was left to a slow, agonizing death by the hands of undead Gregor Clegane.
  • All for Nothing:
    • Whatever plan Margaery had to save her brother literally goes up in flames when the Great Sept is burned in a wildfire explosion, killing her, Loras, the High Sparrow, and hundreds of other people in one fell swoop.
    • Jaime became the Kingslayer to stop the Mad King from destroying the city with wildfire, and the Great Sept of Baelor is one of the locations he knew had wildfire beneath it. Instead, his own sister used it, all to secure her rule.
    • Davos more or less says Melisandre's sacrificing Shireen for the sake of Stannis's victory was this because Stannis was slain and his cause defeated regardless.
    Melisandre: Her own blood knew it was the only way-!
    Davos: The only way for what?! They all died anyway!
  • The Alliance:
    • The North, the Vale and the Wildlings are united under Jon Snow against the White Walkers.
    • Dany leads a coalition of Essosi forces joined by Ironborn ships and about to bolstered by armies from Dorne and the Reach.
  • All There in the Manual: While the episode does not explicitly confirm the identity of Jon's father, supplemental material on HBO's MakingGameOfThrones.com website confirms the long-standing fan theory that is indeed Rhaegar.
  • Always a Bigger Fish: Jon invokes this by pointing out to the northern lords who think their problems are over with the Boltons destroyed that the Night King and his undead legions are still coming.
  • Anywhere but Their Lips: In a moment of tenderness, Jon kisses Sansa's forehead after saying they need to trust each other.
  • Apologetic Attacker: Qyburn apologizes to Pycelle before having him killed.
  • Armor-Piercing Question:
    • When Walder tries to give a Not So Different comment to Jaime, he calls him out on how pathetic he is and asked him why the Lannisters would even need the Freys if they can't hold onto the Riverlands. Walder was left speechless as Jaime leaves.
    • When Davos accuses Melisandre of lying to Stannis about being the one, she defends herself by saying that she was wrong about Stannis. Davos responds, "Aye, you were wrong. How many died because you were wrong?". Melisandre can't counter that.
  • Asshole Victim:
    • The High Sparrow and Lancel weren't exactly sympathetic this season but in this episode, each takes actions to make sure the viewer is less inclined to consider their loss a bad thing. The High Sparrow goes back on his deal with Margaery by marking Loras as a member of the Faith (essentially robbing House Tyrell of its heir) and Lancel threatens to hurt the little bird simply for running away from him.
    • Considering everything they did over the course of the series, it can be hard to feel any sympathy for the Freys when they all meet their violent ends.
    • Qyburn says that, whatever Pycelle's faults, he didn't deserve the death that he receives. Considering that Pycelle was a shameless weasel who did everything in his power to stay in the good graces of whoever happened to be in charge, it's easy to disagree with him. from the books... 
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning:
  • Back for the Finale: Ellaria and the Sand Snakes return after their last appearance in the season premiere.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Cersei manages to knock off all her enemies and take the Iron Throne, not even seeming to care that she drove her own son to suicide to get there. Somewhat downplayed as her victory is essentially Black and Gray Morality if the former beat the latter.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For:
    • Sansa reminisces that, back when she was younger, she used to wish to be anywhere outside of Winterfell. That wish came true in the worst way, and now she wishes she had appreciated what she actually had.
    • Margaery has struck a deal with the High Sparrow for the life of Loras, only that she didn't count that Loras is still under the complete control of the High Sparrow, so he maims Loras in front of his father and sister as a final screw you to the Tyrells.
    • Jaime's mantra of "the only people that matter are me and my sister" comes to a head when he returns to King's Landing and sees that Cersei set off the wildfire and killed hundreds at the very least, just to keep herself in power.
      • Jaime wanted to stay at King's Landing to protect Cersei from their enemies; he should have stayed to protect King's Landing and their enemies from Cersei, and even then, it's shown that she had no qualms in proceeding as she did even knowing that Jaime would return to the cinders of the city.
    • Septa Unella finally gets a full confession from Cersei, but it won't do her much good in the care of the Mountain.
    • Though Jon adored his brother Robb, he was secretly, but benignly, envious of his charisma and future and just wanted to be him. Now Jon is named as the King in the North just as Robb had been before him — but it's only possible because all of Jon's brothers, who Jon loves dearly, are (apparently) dead.
    • The High Sparrow complained to Cersei about the Great Sept of Baelor's architecture as too gaudy for his tastes in the last season. Cersei finally obliges by redecorating the Sept, with the Sparrow and hundreds of other people along for the ride.
    • As far back as Season One, Cersei clearly longed for power and resented the fact that, as a woman, it's almost impossible for her to wield it directly. Now she sits on the Iron Throne in her own right while the people chant for her — but all three of her children are deceased (with Tommen's death being unavoidably her fault); the people of King's Landing are clearly only supporting her under duress; practically all of the major power players left in Westeros either hate her and want her dead, simply aren't inclined to obey her, or are no longer in a position to provide her with aid; Jaime quite possibly despises her for having used the wildfire to ensure her triumph; and she's gone so emotionally dead she can't even enjoy what little success she's gained.
  • Bittersweet Ending:
    • The sweet: Arya kills Lord Frey. The North is again independent with Jon as king and the Vale as its tenuous ally. Tyrion finally receives respect with Dany naming him Hand of the Queen. Bran discovers Jon's true parentage. Daenerys and her entourage are finally making their way to Westeros.
    • The bitter: Cersei blows up the Sept of Baelor and makes herself queen after Tommen kills himself. She declares war on the Reach and Dorne so they ally with Daenaerys. The stage is set for another war. While not seen, the White Walkers are approaching the Wall, and the Ironborn under Euron Greyjoy are gearing up for war.
  • Blatant Lies: As Daenerys dumps him, Daario tries to assure her he won't have any trouble with any future husband she might have. Considering how Hizdahr zo Loraq, her last intended, was mercilessly mocked by him (Harpy leader suspect or not), it's hard to believe.
  • Bloodbath Villain Origin: Formerly a hated consort queen, then a hated dowager queen, Cersei now becomes regnant Queen in her own right, and the first Lannister to rule openly under the family name. She makes her debut with a massacre comparable to the Red Wedding (carried out by the Freys and Boltons) and the destruction of houses Reyne and Tarbeck perpetrated by House Lannister, both curiously planned by her own father.
  • Book-Ends: Ellaria and the Sand Snakes appeared in the first episode of the season and returned for the last.
  • Brick Joke:
    • Finally, after six seasons of waiting, Winter has Come. Jon and Sansa share a small joke about the news arriving from the Citadel, mentioning how Ned was always going on about that.
    • Back in "Mhysa," Bran told the story of the Rat Cook, who broke the hospitality rule by feeding a king his own son in a pie, immediately followed by the Freys gloating over their victory. Just before killing Walder Frey, Arya feeds him a pie made from his own sons.
  • Brother-Sister Team:
    • Jon and Sansa reaffirming that they are brother and sister no matter what and need to work together to survive the coming winter. Also, it's downright refreshing to see two siblings who genuinely love and care for each other in this series.
    • Yara and Theon who, while they were only seen in a small scene this episode, were seen together here as a team after spending the previous episodes rebuilding their broken relationship.
  • The Bus Came Back: The red-haired prostitute Marei, last seen being driven out of Littlefinger's brothel by the Sparrows, briefly reappears in Grand Maester Pycelle's room, still at her trade even though the Sparrows outlawed prostitution (not that banning prostitution has ever made it disappear, anyway).
  • Call-Back:
    • Two episodes ago, Qyburn noted that his little birds had confirmed a rumor. Turns out it was the rumor of wildfire caches hidden beneath the city put in place by the Mad King, not all of which were found.
    • Cersei makes sure Septa Unella remembers what she promised her at the cell.
    • Furthermore, while she may not realize it, her intent to keep Unella alive rather than kill her is in the same vein as Tyrion's words from the second episode of the first season: "Death is so final. Life is full of possibilities..."
    • The scene where Jon Snow is hailed as the King in the North evokes Robb Stark's own crowning at the end of Season 1.
    • Lady Lyanna Mormont echoes herself telling Stannis "Bear Island knows no king but the King in the North, and his name is STARK" and the Winterfell servant telling Sansa "the North remembers", both from the previous season.
    • Varys promises "fire and blood" to Lady Olenna, which is the title of the last episode of the first season, in which Daenerys gained some real power for the first time with her dragons hatching. It's also the motto of House Targaryen.
    • Sansa makes another main character point out that only an idiot would trust Littlefinger.
    • If only Walder Frey had been able to hear Tywin in season two: lowborn serving girls say "M'lord", highborn girls say "My Lord". Guess which one the pie server uses?
    • Walder Frey unwittingly devouring his own children is a call back to the tale of the Rat Cook told in Season 3: for breaking guest right, the Rat Cook was cursed by the gods and turned into a rat that could only feed on his own offspring.
    • Tyrion's speech about Daenerys making him lose his cynicism and believe in something again evokes what Jorah said last season about his queen.
    • Walder Frey proclaims "the Freys and the Lannisters send their regards." as the words of their alliance, and repeats his Who's Laughing Now? corollary about the Starks and Tullys.
    • Jon tells Sansa "we can’t fight a war amongst ourselves", which were the exact words Ned said to Arya all the way back in the third episode of the series, five years ago. During that conversation, Ned also talked about how Winter was coming, while in this conversation, Sansa tells Jon that Winter is here.
    • Lord Royce's vocal protest against the presence of the Wildlings and refusal to work with them stems from the assumption that his son Waymar was killed by them; as shown in the very first scene in the series in the episode Winter Is Coming, Waymar Royce was actually killed by the White Walkers, but Ned Stark's brushing off the testimony of Will, one of Waymar's companions and the sole survivor of the attack, dispelled any link to the supernatural beings' actions. As it turns out, Jon Snow was also there to witness Will's testimony and execution, so the rest remains to be seen.
  • Cassandra Truth: Margaery warns the High Sparrow that Cersei has something planned and they're all in danger. He doesn't believe her until it is too late.
  • Characters Dropping Like Flies: This episode holds the dubious distinction of managing to kill off more named characters at once than any other, impressive in a show where Anyone Can Die. The Great Sept going up in wildflames alone claims six: the High Sparrow, Kevan Lannister, Lancel Lannister, Loras Tyrell, Mace Tyrell and Margaery Tyrell. Tommen Baratheon dies shortly after from despondent suicide after witnessing it and Grand Maester Pycelle dies beforehand as a precautionary measure by Quyburn's little birds. Septa Unella is as good as dead, too, albeit wishing she truly was. Walder Frey, and his two inept sons Black Walder and Lame Lothar become goners when Arya pays a visit to the Twins.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: The serving girl who pours Bronn wine during the victory feast and keeps looking at Jaime. She's later shown to be Arya in disguise, having infiltrated the Twins to kill Walder Frey and his sons.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: When Littlefinger tells Sansa that he's declared his allegiance for House Stark, Sansa reminds him that he's been allied with many Houses, while always serving his own interests.
  • City of Adventure: Oldtown looks like one, a bright prosperous port town with the Hightower lighthouse fortress on Battle Isle overlooking the major city. It hosts the Citadel, Westeros' own medieval university. It also hosts a gigantic library.
  • Cliffhanger: The season ends with Daenerys and her allies about to sail to Westeros.
  • Co-Dragons: Qyburn serves as the Hand for the newly crowned Queen Cersei, and Gregor is her personal bodyguard.
  • Composite Character: Qyburn takes the place of Books!Varys in having the little birds commit assassination. Pycelle (who in the books gets his head smashed in by Varys) gets the death of Book!Kevan, who is stabbed to death by the little birds.
  • Cornered Rattlesnake: Backed into a corner, facing a Kangaroo Court almost certain to find her guilty and with all other avenues to escape justice for her crimes (i.e., Trial by Combat) cut off by the High Sparrow, Cersei lashes out with a colossal act of state sponsored terrorism, using the fantasy equivalent of a weapon of mass destruction to bomb a holy site where she would have been tried to elimate all of her enemies (who were inside at the time) in one fell swoop.
  • Creepy Child: The "little birds" who stab Pycelle to death and stab Lancel in the back without expression.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death:
    • Someone was unlucky enough to be crushed to death by a giant bell when the Great Sept of Baelor was blown up by wildfire.
    • It's implied that Septa Unella will be tortured and raped by a zombie Gregor Clegane until she dies.
  • Dark Reprise: The title theme gets a wicked and alarming nod on the organ through the second half of "Light of the Seven", played during the trial.
    • "Hear Me Roar", a dark reprise of "The Rains of Castamere" and "Light of the Seven", sets the tone of Cersei's coronation.
  • Daylight Horror: The destruction of the Great Sept takes place in broad daylight and bright sunlight but it doesn't make it any less horrific.
  • Dead All Along: In Season 1, Jon Snow expressed his wish to learn about his mother, if she is alive, if she cares for him, and Ned promises Jon they'll talk about his mother when he returns from the Capital. Sadly, Jon's mother died of childbirth shortly after he was born.
  • Death by Childbirth: After years of speculations, viewers (and readers) do eventually learn that Lyanna Stark indeed died after giving birth to her son Jon Snow and her brother Ned found her in a pool of blood from postpartum bleeding. This is when Lyanna passes her son into her brother's care, who raises Jon as his own son after his sister's death.
  • Death by Irony: The High Sparrow, a religious fanatic who made a career of threatening people with the gods' wrath dies, swallowed by infernal flames rising from beneath his feet, resembling iconography of punished sinners.
  • Death Glare:
    • Margaery's last act is to glare at the High Sparrow for his refusal to let anyone leave the Sept.
    • Jaime fixes Cersei with an icy one upon finding King's Landing smoldering and her on the Iron Throne.
  • Decomposite Character: Ellaria Sand and Varys get the "Justice. Vengeance. Fire and blood." line from Books!Doran Martell.
  • Defiant to the End:
    • Pycelle drops the old man act and smacks a kid full force before being overrun.
    • Implied with Black Walder, who Arya comments was hard to carve, though she could have meant that in the culinary sense.
  • Demoted to Extra:
    • Tormund is present in the meeting hall, but has nothing to add besides a sarcastic rebuttal to Lord Royce's insult.
    • Lord Royce barely participates in the meeting hall, even though he's the second highest-ranking officer representing the Vale and his word would have a lot of weight, especially for Sansa.
    • Lord Wyman Manderly, thanks to the whole "the North remembers" plotline being condensed and altered beyond recognition and the Frey pies plot given to Arya.
    • Missandei and Grey Worm show up in this episode, but have no lines; same for Theon and Yara.
    • The Sand Snakes may count, too, even if two of them actually have some lines each.
  • Despair Event Horizon:
    • Loras has already crossed one by the time he is brought to trial, so much so that he immediately confesses his sins in full and is willing to become a member of the Faith Militant, much to Margaery's dismay. At least he and Renly are Together in Death now that he's been killed in the wildfire.
    • Tommen crosses it when he witnesses the burning of the sept that killed his wife and her family, made harder by the fact he is barred from leaving by the Mountain. Instead of coming to his senses, he jumps out of the window to kill himself.
    • Cersei finally has the throne, but Tommen's death seems to have left her as a shell who is just going through the motions.
  • Didn't See That Coming:
    • The High Sparrow was confident that Cersei had no moves left. Whether she attended the trial or not, justice would be served and she would be punished. He refuses to heed Margaery's warnings that Cersei would not be absent unless she had a plan, and because of it everyone dies. Granted, death by wildfire is rather hard to predict, and he probably felt his Sparrows would be adequate to defend him. In his last moments when the rumble of the explosion shakes the sept, he realizes his error.
    • Cersei planned the explosion well, but didn't count on Tommen taking it so hard.
    • Both Jon Snow and Littlefinger did not see how the Norther Houses would react during their meeting. Jon seems completely blown away when the room full of Lords start to crown him King in the North, while Littlefinger is left silently fuming at the fact his (presumable) plan to have Sansa become a malleable figurehead for the north with him whispering in her ear has been derailed.
  • Dirty Coward: Jaime asks Walder Frey if he was a fighting man in his younger days. Walder tactfully answers the question by saying that the purpose of battle is victory over one's enemies and that victory is all that matters in the final analysis, implying that he was never brave enough to be a fighter and doesn't care — so long as he gets what he wants.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Unella deserved some retribution for the abuse she put her various prisoners through, but being tortured and/or raped to death (or whatever else it is) by an undead Gregor Clegane at Cersei's command far surpasses any abuse Unella inflicted and is beyond the pale.
  • The Drag-Along: This is the reason Daenerys dumps Daario, as she has to have the door of alliance by marriage open. She cannot go to Westeros nilly-willy bringing with her a murderous third wheel to the equation. One of the aspects of this that Tyrion points out to Daenerys is that she is showing maturity by recognizing that she is going to a place where such a thing matters.
  • Dramatic Irony:
    • The same episode that gives Jon nearly everything he had once dreamed of — recognition as a Stark by his Lord Bannermen and a Stark position of leadership — reveals he's not Eddard Stark's son, though he is a Stark on his mother's side. Jon is the nephew of Eddard Stark, and likely royalty. In addition, since his biological father was Rhaegar Targaryen, the North is once more bowing to a dragon without anyone (including Jon) even knowing.
    • In her Evil Feels Good moment, Cersei tells Unella that she lies about her incest with Jaime to protect her son. The next scene has Tommen throwing himself out the window after seeing what his mother has done.
    • Cersei has eliminated all her immediate rivals and become the ruling queen, no doubt thinking she's cheated Maggy the Frog's prophecy, even if all her children are dead. However, her actions have ensured that Olenna Tyrell has thrown her lot in with another queen, younger and more beautiful, who is coming to cast Cersei down and take all that she (now) holds dear...
    • Cersei never figures out that it was Olenna who murdered her son Joffrey, not Tyrion as she believed. By having Olenna's family murdered and ensuring her house's extinction, Cersei unknowingly avenges Joffrey's death. Even worse, Olenna had Joffrey killed in the first place to protect her granddaughter, who is killed in the wildfire explosion Cersei arranges, making Olenna's efforts all for nothing.
    • Walder Frey compares himself to Jaime, saying that since they're both kingslayers, they've managed to outlive those high and mighty people who've slighted them. But Jaime (and the audience) knows that he killed the Mad King to save the city and not for petty revenge and join the winning side of the war. Walder toasts to House Stark's demise, not knowing that Sansa Stark and Jon Snow have taken back the North.
    • Much earlier Cersei admitted to Tyrion that if it wasn't for her children to keep her going, she would've long ago thrown herself from atop the highest tower in King's Landing. And now her actions have driven her last child to do exactly that, and yet she is still going.
  • Driven to Suicide: Tommen, after seeing his mother murder his wife along with hundreds of others using wildfire.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Her: Margaery, to an extent — a hugely important character until now, treated by most as collateral damage in the High Sparrow's glorious death. That is, of course, until we see the effect her death has on Tommen.
    • Loras, who was in his cell all season before having one scene out of it and in that very same scene being killed off.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: According to her actress Sophie Turner, Sansa stops smiling during Jon's coronation as the King in the North because she realizes that — despite playing a key role in achieving victory over the Boltons — she's being sidelined and ignored by the others, who are all looking to Jon for leadership and victory. While Jon recognizes Sansa's role in the victory during an earlier scene, Kit Harington has stated that Jon is oblivious to his sister's feelings.
  • Dying Alone:
    • Appears to be the case concerning Tommen's suicide. The "Inside the Episode" segment even notes that if Cersei had been present to console him over becoming a widower, rather than doing other things like torturing Septa Unella, he may not have taken his own life.
    • Lancel is probably half a mile of tunnel away from the nearest person when the bomb goes off.
  • Dying as Yourself:
    • Twofold for Tommen. In jumping out the window of the Red Keep, Tommen finally was able to make a single decision as his own person without anyone guiding his hand — not Tywin, not Cersei, not the High Sparrow. He also removed his crown before he jumped, so that he would die not as the King of the Andals and the First Men, but as Tommen Baratheon.
    • Lancel gets this, as well, since him dragging his crippled body to the candles despite it not having any effect on whether he lived or died could be seen as him returning to who he was in the first two seasons; a good-natured, if misguided and somewhat bumbling, young man who just wanted to please people.
    • Margaery, too. After spending several seasons trying to come off as an innocent girl and a whole season pretending to be a repentant sinner, she throws her disguise away as she angrily tells the High Sparrow off while trying to save everybody.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome:
    • Lancel Lannister gets one when he is crawling towards the wildfire cache after being stabbed. He's trying desperately to get to the slowly burning candles before their flames hit the wildfire, but he doesn't make it and is vaporized along with the Great Sept. Points for effort, though.
    • Margaery Tyrell also gets one when she realizes that the only reason Cersei would not be at her trial is if she didn't intend to face the consequences for not being there. She spends her last moments defying the High Sparrow and desperately trying to get everyone out of the Sept before it goes sky high.
  • Emerging from the Shadows: When Ellaria summons Varys, he emerges from the shadows from the front and then the camera appears in front of him to reveal his presence.
  • Enemy Mine: The Tyrells and Martells have a very turbulent history but decided to work together with the Targaryens to take down Cersei. For that matter, the Targaryens also have turbulent histories with both houses. Dorne in particular is still pissed at Rhaegar for cheating on the late Princess Elia.
  • Evil Costume Switch: Granted, Cersei has always been a cruel and ruthless person, but she dons a black dress with some Shoulders of Doom to go along with what is her most vile act yet.
  • Evil Counterpart:
    • In the same episode that Queen Daenerys makes Tyrion her Hand, Cersei is crowned Queen by Qyburn, who has the Hand badge pinned to his own robe.
    • Cersei to Ellaria. Though both of them used murderous means to achieve their status as leaders of their realms, Ellaria is at least well-intentioned, while Cersei only cares about herself.
  • Evil Feels Good: Cersei has a long speech about this to Unella; she notes that killing Robert Baratheon felt good, that repeatedly fucking her own brother felt good, burning all enemies alive with wildfire felt good and even confessing this to her captor felt good.
    "I do things because they feel good. I drink because it feels good. I killed my husband because it felt good to be rid of him. I fuck my brother because it feels good to feel him inside me. I lie about fucking my brother because it feels good to keep our son safe from hateful hypocrites. I killed your High Sparrow and all his little sparrows, all his septons, all his septas, all his filthy soldiers, because it felt good to watch them burn. It felt good to imagine their shock and their pain. No thought has ever given me greater joy. Even confessing feels good under the right circumstances."
  • Exact Words:
    • Cersei told Septa Unella that her face would be the last one she sees before she dies. Cersei never said her death would be immediate. Subverted as Cersei walks away just as zombified Gregor starts to torture Unella, who is screaming in horror at the sight of his decayed face.
    • Walder Frey's sons are here.
    • The High Sparrow said he would let Loras return home. He said nothing about letting him return home as heir to the Tyrell name.
  • The Exile: After learning that Melisandre burned Shireen at the stake, Jon decides to exile her from the North on pain of death should she return.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Tommen, in a way. Upon seeing that Cersei just blew up the Great Sept, killing hundreds of people including his own wife, it's possible he realizes that he will never be considered a good king, nor will his reign last particularly long after such a debacle. Notably, he doesn't just jump out a window, but takes his crown off first — it's not just Margaery's death, but silently admitting he's a failure as a king. Then he calmly walks out of the tower window, resigned to his fate.
  • Face Framed in Shadow:
    • After it's revealed that Jon is actually the son of Lyanna Stark (and Rhaegar Targaryen, as confirmed by HBO), we cut to a shot of Jon's face with a shadow on his right side.
    • When Gregor Clegane takes off his helmet to show his face to Septa Unella, it is mostly obscured by the shadows, though one can also see that it's mostly rotted by this point.
  • Facepalm: An anguished one by Mace upon hearing that his son and heir Loras will abandon the Tyrell name and all that goes with it.
  • Facial Horror: We get a glimpse at what Gregor now looks like under that helmet. From what we can see, it's mostly rotting, and it's so horrifying that all Septa Unella can do is panic and scream.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Oldtown is one for the Ancient city of Alexandria complete with a giant signal lighthouse and a huge library.
  • Fate Worse than Death: Cersei's revenge against Septa Unella, leaving her to the mercy of The Mountain — if he's anything like the man he used to be, he's probably going to rape Unella to death. And it's going to take a while.
  • Five-Second Foreshadowing:
    • The camera lingering on Tommen's window after he removes his crown makes the coming suicide pretty transparent.
    • After Walder starts lecherously eyeing up the "servant girl" serving him meat pie, the girl responds to his query of "You're not one of mine, are you?" with "No, my lord." Arya's saying "My lord" instead of "M'lord" like a peasant would was a give-away to the highly astute Tywin Lannister. Here, it's a subtle foreshadowing as to the true identity of the servant girl: Arya Stark, in disguise.
  • Fly-at-the-Camera Ending: The final shot pans into the sky from Daenerys's fleet. Her dragons each fly just past the camera before it cuts to credits. This doubles as a Call-Back to the end of Season 3, when she began her march to liberate the ci-devant Slaver's Bay.
  • Forced to Watch: Upon arriving in the location where the wildfire is kept, Lancel is stabbed in the spine, paralyzing him from the waist down, and sees the candles left in the pool of wildfire, desperately trying to crawl towards it and avert the catastrophe, only to fail.
  • For the Evulz: Cersei confesses that her motivations ultimately boil down to "it feels good."
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: The chandeliers in the Citadel's library are the same spinning rings that surround the clockwork globe in the show's title sequence.
  • Generation Xerox: Long ago, Aerys II Tarrgaryen named Tywin Lannister as his hand. Now many years later, Aerys' youngest child named Tywin's youngest child her hand.
  • God Is Evil: Davos says this about the Lord of Light when Melisandre claims it was his will that Shireen be burned alive as a sacrifice. Melisandre points out that it was the same Lord who resurrected Jon Snow, suggesting that the Lord of Light has Blue and Orange Morality. Alternatively, she may have been mistaken about what he wants, perhaps implying Shireen's sacrifice was also a mistake. Considering that the other named follower of R'hllor, Thoros of Myr, did nothing but raise people from the dead and fight for the weak, and that the other Red Priestesses appears to follow Daenerys for her good works, this seems to lean more on Melisandre's flawed logic. Especially since none of them called for the deaths of children.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: Cersei has committed her biggest atrocity so far and is now ruling on the Iron Throne. Not as Queen Regent, not as Queen Mother, but as Queen.
  • Godzilla Threshold: Jon invokes this to the Northern Lords who want to go home and batten down the hatches to outlast the winter that their war is far from over, and they're facing an enemy who wants to destroy them all who thrives in winter.
    Jon Snow: The war's not over, and the true enemy won't wait out the storm. He brings the storm.
    • Cersei lost all respect among the populace with her public shaming, and has lost all her authority to the Tyrells and the Faith Militant. Only a massive act of state terrorism will enable Cersei to regain her authority, this time through fear.
  • The Greatest Story Never Told:
    • Only three people possibly know Lancel was in the cellar: Cersei, Qyburn and the little bird. Not one person knows Lancel was trying to save everyone's lives.
    • Bran witnesses only through a vision what is perhaps the best kept secret of all Westeros — Ned Stark's sister Lyanna dying after giving birth to her son by Rhaegar Targaryen (revealed to the viewers as Jon Snow). Ned promises to protect his nephew Jon, whom he raises and loves as his own, and Jon is safe and sound, despite the entire kingdom believing the Targaryens are gone — at least the male line.
  • Has a Type: Jaime turns down the chance of a threesome on this excuse, handing the two ladies over to Bronn who quips, "Not blonde enough?" in the obligatory incest joke.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: The reveal that Lyanna was Jon's mother puts multiple moments from early seasons in this light: Ned telling Jon, "You are a Stark. You might not have my name, but you have my blood," and that Ned never cheated on Catelyn and was actually faithful to her his entire life. Jon and Arya's particularly close relationship among the Stark siblings gets even sweeter with the reveal, as Arya is implied to be Generation Xerox of Lyanna — meaning Jon had a special attachment to his mother without even realizing it.
  • Here We Go Again!: With Cersei on the throne, Jon being declared as the new King in the North by both Northern Lords and the completely fresh Knights of the Vale, Daenerys and her forces finally coming to Westeros (as well as her alliance with Theon and Yara, the Tyrell forces and Dorne), Euron Greyjoy building a giant fleet of warships, and Littlefinger revealing to Sansa his intent to obtain the Iron Throne, it seems that we are about to enter a new "War of the Five Kings".
  • History Repeats: A Season Finale featuring an Awesome Moment of Crowning happening in the North with Jon Snow being named the King in the North and Daenerys finally gaining power. This episode is basically the season one finale but on a much grander scale.
    • The Northmen elect a King in the North once again (Jon Snow). In addition to Jon being the embodiment of a Northern warrior who fought in the battle alongside his men and can lead them in the wars to come, he is also elected king because he's Ned Stark's blood son which (unbeknownst Jon and most everyone else) isn't actually true — just as Joffrey was not Robert Baratheon's biological son. However, Jon is still related to Ned because he's Ned Stark's blood nephew by Lyanna Stark, making Lyanna Mormont still correct when she said, "Ned Stark's blood runs through his veins".
      • And just like with Robb and the Riverlands, Jon is poised to fight with not one, but two, regional forces with the initial support of the Vale. In addition, their Awesome Moment of Crowning scenes almost exactly mirror each other. Curiously enough, neither Robb nor Jon were born in the North (Robb was born at Riverrun; Jon was born at the Tower of Joy in Dorne).
    • Tyrion is appointed Hand of the Queen by Daenerys in person, years after Tywin named him acting Hand. For the matter, Tyrion's father was the Hand of Daenerys' father.
    • This is the second Season Finale where Theon accompanies a ruler in officially waging war against the Lannisters.
    • Cersei imitates Maegor the Cruel and burns down the biggest sept in the city.
    • Cersei resumes the Mad King's wildfire plot and again a Lannister tries to foil the scheme, but this time unsuccessfully.
    • King's Landing is again cursed with a vicious idiot for a monarch, and taking into consideration the Dance of the Dragons animated featurette, Cersei would be the second woman ever to sit in the Iron Throne. 200 years prior, Rhaenyra Targaryen seized the throne under similarly chaotic circumstances and having lost two of her Velaryon sons during the civil war, leaving her a cruel creature of grief that reigned with vengeance and blood in her mind.
    • A Targaryen Invasion with 3 dragons except it has now a mighty armada to back it up.
    • Westeros is on the cusp of a new five-way war of rulers: Jon Snow the King in the North, Cersei Lannister the Queen on the Iron Throne, Daenerys Targaryen the queen claimant, Euron Greyjoy the King of the Iron Islands, and the Night King of Winter.
    • A boy falls from a window after witnessing a despicable action of Cersei, but this time the boy falls on his own accord.
    • A Mormont gives a Rousing Speech to lift Jon's confidence, then as a man of the Night's Watch, now as the King in the North.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: The High Sparrow only dies as he does because he went to great pains to make sure Cersei had absolutely no other option. Her defeat was assured when he got Trial by Combat abolished, and Cersei had nothing left to lose.
  • Honor Before Reason: The High Sparrow dooms everyone because he refuses to break his traditions and even makes sure everyone remains to witness it.
  • Hope Spot: Margaery figures the general outline of Cersei's plan, making it look like she will manage to evacuate at least some of the people inside the Sept in the nick of time. But then the Sparrows prevent everyone from leaving. At the same time, Lancel almost manages to blow one of the candles out.
  • I Ate WHAT?!: Walder Frey is tricked by Arya into eating two of his sons cooked in a pie.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Melisandre points this out regarding Shireen's sacrifice, saying however cruel her actions were, the mysterious ways of the Lord of Light are the reason they are all standing in Winterfell. She both burnt Shireen and resurrected Jon Snow as per the Lord's commands and they will need her in the fight to come. Davos demands execution while Jon Snow banishes her, mostly likely because a good act does not wash out the bad, nor the bad the good.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: Tyrion and Daenerys finally recognize in each other what they had been seeking for a long time: to have a peer, a true friend and a confidant. Tyrion expresses his sincere belief in Daenerys as a person that appreciates his counsel; Daenerys reciprocates by naming him Hand of the Queen, a token of friendship and honor that almost brings him to tears, leading him to bend the knee to his Queen.
  • Idiot Ball:
    • It isn't clear why, exactly, Lancel decided to chase a small child into the catacombs when he should have been retrieving Cersei from the Red Keep — nor why he decides to threaten the kid right before he gets stabbed. The prize for this display of idiocy is a front-row seat to a massive wildfire explosion.
    • Neither is it clear why Cersei would choose to give Lancel a front-row seat for the cornerstone of her entire plan (or why the boy would choose to lure him there, if it was his idea). Lancel may not have managed to prevent the plan, but if he had even a minute more he arguably could have put all those candles out in time.
    • Nor is it clear why the High Sparrow sent Lancel, his only witness against Cersei, to retrieve Cersei, especially since the last time he did so she simply had her 8-foot undead bodyguard literally tear the head off one of those he sent.
    • The High Sparrow has in all previous appearances demonstrated a keen insight of his opponents and planned accordingly. He only moved against his enemies when he knew they couldn't retaliate. So Cersei can win this one, he suddenly decides to be a rules stickler despite Margaery's entirely logical warnings and even goes the extra mile of trapping everyone in the sept for no reason, convinced that nothing she can do will stop the judgement of the gods. This may stem from arrogance in believing that he has Cersei beaten already.
  • Ignored Expert: Margaery knows Cersei all too well and is able to use that knowledge to predict that she has something planned to kill everyone in the Great Sept. The High Sparrow chooses to ignore her warning, even though he should also know Cersei well enough to know the situation is suspicious.
  • Informed Ability: Discussed by Walder as he remarks that everyone said the famous Blackfish was a legendary warrior, yet he was killed by foot soldiers (having revealed he hadn't actually fought in years).
  • Insistent Terminology: Lord Royce doesn't want to fight alongside wildling invaders. Jon says the Free Folk aided in their victory, and Tormund insists that they were invited south of the Wall.
  • I Owe You My Life:
    • The main reason Jon did not hang Melisandre for burning Princess Shireen is because Melisandre resurrected him. He exiles her instead.
    • A "you gave my life meaning/purpose again by letting me serve you" variant happens between Tyrion and Daenerys.
  • Ironic Echo: Cersei calls out, "Shame, shame, shame," to Unella as she leaves the Septa to her fate.
  • Irony:
    • Lyanna Mormont and the Northern lords are willing to overlook Jon being an illegitimate son and proclaim Jon as their king since Ned Stark's blood runs in his veins. In the scene right before this one, it is revealed to viewers that while this is technically true as Jon does have Ned Stark's blood running through his veins, it's because Jon is Ned Stark's blood nephew, not his blood son, as his Stark blood comes from Ned's sister, Lyanna Stark, who is revealed to the viewers as Jon's mother.
    • The first time a Stark was recently anointed "THE KING IN THE NORTH!", the kingmaker was a big burly stereotypical Northman — Greatjon Umber. This time? A young pre-adolescent girl who inherited a lordship title prematurely, is wise beyond her years, and barely comes up to the waist of the typical Northern Lord is Jon's kingmaker.
    • Only a few years ago, House Stark was seen as the resounding loser among the noble families of Westeros and was believed to have lost all its heirs, while many of the other houses were on the rise (the Lannisters, Freys, Boltons, Tyrells) or at least surviving pretty well (the Baratheons and Martells). Now, House Stark is in the best position to continue its line thanks to having four possible heirs: The illegitimate son Jon who managed to leave the Night's Watch; firstborn daughter Sansa, who escaped her marriages to both the Lannisters and Boltons; trueborn son Bran, who everyone falsely believes to be dead; and the wildcard Arya, also believed to be dead, but managed to survive five seasons of being on the run from the crown and is still very much a Stark.
      • In contrast, many other houses are in dire straits: nearly the entire Tyrell line (Mace, Margaery and Loras) is wiped out, leaving only the elderly Tyrell-by-marriage Olenna; the remaining trueborn Baratheons (Renly, Stannis and Shireen) have been killed while the only surviving person with Baratheon blood left — Robert Baratheon's illegitimate son Gendry — vanished a while ago; Cersei Lannister's children (Joffrey, Tommen and Myrcella) are all dead while neither Jaime, Cersei or Tyrion are in good positions to marry and produce more children (a member of the Kingsguard, a queen who doesn't want to marry and dwarf serving the Lannister's enemy respectively); Jon Arryn's only heir is the sickly Robin who Littlefinger seems poised to dispose of; Dorne is technically being ruled by Martell blood (Oberyn's bastard daughters) but the Martell family members with the Martell name (Doran and Trystane) were murdered; the reigning patriarch of House Frey and his sons have just been killed by Arya; and House Bolton has been crushed by Jon and Sansa. At this rate, House Stark might be the only family whose line survives.
  • It's All About Me:
    • If she hadn't already made it clear before, Cersei. Nothing matters to her anymore. Not her family, not her house, not even her own children. The only person that she cares about is herself. She doesn't even bat an eye when Tommen — the only child she has left — commits suicide.
    • Littlefinger, in his Love Confession to Sansa, makes it abundantly clear that for all his talk of wanting to help her reclaim her home, his real endgame is for himself to sit on the Iron Throne with Sansa as his wife.
  • Just Between You and Me: Cersei confesses everything she has done to Unella, from killing Robert to having an incestuous relationship with Jaime. Of course, there's no way the Septa is coming out of this alive.
  • Karma Houdini Warranty: Like we saw with Ramsay and The Boltons, Walder and The Frey's has finally ran out.
  • Karmic Death:
    • Played with. While Tommen was a poor king, he wasn't a bad person and his suicide was hardly karmic for him. However, the show's whole plot was jumpstarted by Jaime throwing Bran out a window to protect his and Cersei's secret incestuous children. After Cersei destroys the Sept in another effort to protect her secret, Tommen is the last of said children to die... by deliberately jumping out a window.
    • As the last of the Red Wedding conspirators, each of whom died in a very karmic way, Walder Frey dies of a slit throat by the youngest daughter of Catelyn Stark.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • The High Sparrow orders his men to carve the Seven-Pointed Star onto Loras' forehead with a knife, earning the dismay of Mace and the ire of Margaery, who had struck a deal with the High Sparrow for Loras's release in exchange for bringing the Crown and the Faith together. However, scarring Loras was not part of the deal, meaning that the High Sparrow ordered it just because he had the power to do it.
    • Qyburn tells Pycelle that even he doesn't deserve to die in a place like that. He then orders his little birds to stab him dead anyway. Whether Qyburn did it to reap on the irony or for his own amusement is up for grabs.
    • Lancel is stabbed in the spine so he can die in a futile attempt to stop Cersei's plan.
  • Kick the Morality Pet: Cersei unintentionally does this to Tommen by killing his wife and all the people in the Great Sept, driving him to suicide.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: Feeding someone their own children would have been Arya's Moral Event Horizon if that person wasn't Walder Frey, and his kids weren't the ones that personally stabbed a pregnant Talisa in the stomach and slit Catelyn's throat.
  • Kicked Upstairs: Daario being left to rule Meereen so that Daenerys can be available to marry anyone in Westeros.
  • Killed Offscreen: Black Walder and Lothar are killed by Arya and turned into food by the time she kills Walder on-screen.
  • Kill It with Fire: Everyone that is killed by Wildfire.
  • Landmark of Lore: In-universe:
    • For the first time, the city of Oldtown is featured in Game Of Thrones, with its most noted landmarks on display, the Hightower and the Citadel (in the background); the Hightower being the tallest structure in Westeros (surpassing the Wall) and one of the oldest and most mysterious structures in Westeros, and the Citadel, the headquarters for the Order of the Maesters and the location of one of the greatest libraries in the known world.
    • Subverted with the Great Sept of Baelor, which was only ~150 years old at the time of its destruction. It was one of the youngest landmarks in Westeros, specially compared with castles and keeps that have survived millennia.
  • Last of His Kind: Olenna is now the last living Tyrell (and that only by marriage, since she's a Redwyne by birth), leaving her with nothing but the prospect of vengeance.
  • Last Request: Lyanna's Famous Last Words, at her deathbed.
    Lyanna Stark: If Robert finds out, he'll kill him, you know he will. You have to protect him. Promise me, Ned. Promise me, Ned. Promise me.
  • Lipstick and Load Montage: The episode begins with a montage of Cersei, Margaery, Tommen and the High Sparrow all getting ready for the big trial, with strong emphasis on Cersei.
  • Like a Son to Me: Davos says he loved Shireen as if she were his own daughter when confronting Melisandre about her terrible death.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: The Citadel's information on the Night's Watch is pretty out of date. They are unaware of Jeor Mormont and Maester Aemon's deaths, nor are they aware that Jon became and has since vacated the position of Lord Commander (for that matter, Sam is also unaware of the latter). They should have at the very least known of Jeor Mormont's death by mutiny since that information was communicated by raven to Maester Aemon (and received by Davos at the end of Season 3) and the Small Council (as reported by Tyrion to Jorah in Season 5). It could be that the Citadel shares the Southern contempt for the Night's Watch and has simply left letters from the Wall unopened.
  • Lonely at the Top:
    • After six seasons, Cersei finally got her deepest wish to be named Queen and sit on the Iron Throne. All she had to pay for it was all three of her children, very possibly the love of the only man she ever cared about, and every political ally.
    • Daenerys remarks on this, noting that The Chains of Commanding made her so cold that she didn't really feel all that bad when Daario stepped down.
  • Long Bus Trip:
    • Brienne and Pod not only misses the Battle of the Bastards, but also Jon's Awesome Moment of Crowning.
    • Justified by Ser Jorah, as Greyscale takes long to cure, if it does.
  • Look on My Works, Ye Mighty, and Despair!: Cersei just built herself a crown of fear and ashes and the simple motto, "follow or be burnt alive". Long will be her hubris.
  • Love Confession:
    • Daario to Daenerys, and Littlefinger to Sansa, both make their true feelings clear in an attempt to stop the woman they desire from leaving them.
    • Implied when Tyrion tells Daenerys that Daario wasn't the first to love her and won't be the last. He's quite moved when Dany makes him her Hand, kneeling just as Daario did earlier.
  • Mad Bomber: Cersei outdoes the Mad King and actually manages to "burn them all", blowing up the Sept of Baelor with most of her enemies inside.
  • Malicious Misnaming: Olenna calls Obara "Barbara", likely knowing full well that this is not a Dornish name at all.
  • Meaningful Rename: Daenerys renames Slavers' Bay to the Bay of Dragons, as slavery is no longer around and she drove that point home with judicious use of dragons.
    • We also find out that Jon had another birthname (yet to be heard, though), but it's heavily implied that Ned Stark thought it was safer to name him Jon, probably because the other name screamed Targaryen with each of its letters.
  • Monumental Damage: The Great Sept of Baelor is destroyed by wildfire that Cersei set up underneath it from the Mad King's old stores of the stuff, and the resulting explosion also wipes out several blocks of King's Landing.
  • Mood Whiplash: The very somber scene where Cersei reviews Tommen's body is followed by the lightly comedic Samwell and Citadel bureaucrat scene, which is then followed by the Winterfell scene where Ser Davos denounces Melisandre for having burned Shireen alive.
  • Murder the Hypotenuse: A non-romantic variety. Cersei has Pycelle killed because he was the only one Tommen listened to.
  • My God, What Have I Done?:
    • There are shades of this with Jaime. A complaint from some critics earlier in the season is that his relationship with Cersei wasn't souring like it did in the novels after he returned to King's Landing after losing his sword-hand, reevaluating his life and worried about his lack of honor. If their intention was to show this when he met Brienne at Riverrun, it was internalized and not easily conveyed in dialogue. Then in this episode, Jaime gets faced with Walder Frey trying to buddy up with him saying they're the same as kingslayers (even though Walder is a disgusting and honorless traitor who broke guest right), and the scene really plays up Jaime's disgusted realization that these are the kind of people he is supporting. Then we get an even bigger, nonverbal one, when he returns to King's Landing and is stunned to see that Cersei has blown up the Great Sept and the Tyrells, Tommen is dead, and Cersei has seized the throne. TV Jaime seems to have finally realized he made all the wrong choices.
    • The High Sparrow exhibits this, just before he is incinerated, standing stock still as he realizes he's made two catastrophic mistakes; firstly, he underestimated just how far Cersei is willing to go to get revenge for the wrongs (in her mind) done to her. Secondly, he only realizes just before it's too late that trying to cut off all avenues of escape for Cersei to evade justice for her crimes (i.e., outlawing trial by combat) only succeeded in backing Cersei into a corner where she had nothing left to lose.
  • My Name Is Inigo Montoya: Before she slits her throat, Arya has this to say to Walder Frey:
    Arya: My name is Arya Stark. I want you to know that. The last thing you're ever going to see is a Stark smiling down at you as you die.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • The title derives from the sixth book of the novel series, which already received a Title Drop from Lady Crane earlier in the season.
    • Arya feeding a Frey the bodies of his kin cooked in a pie comes from an act that was carried out in the books by Wyman Manderly. Disguising herself as a serving girl who looked interested in Jaime makes similar to Pia from the book.
    • The scene where Qyburn has Pycelle murdered by the "little birds" mirrors the final scene from A Dance with Dragons.
    • Ellaria and Varys tell Lady Olenna that they will help her get "Justice, Vengeance... Fire and Blood". In the books these words are spoken by Doran Martell instead, under similar circumstances.
    • The circumstances of Kevan Lannister's death are widely different, but as in the books, he also dies as soon as winter is officially declared, which happens at the end of A Dance with Dragons.
    • When Sam enters the library, the ceiling lantern is nothing other than the armillary of the show's title sequence, with the same circular disc murals showing the Doom of Valyria and exile of Targaryens. The title designers always stated that the title sequences was intended to be an in-universe map built by a Maester at a Citadel that tracks and updates the rise and fall of the Great Houses and Castles.
    • Jaime acting as "wingman" for Bronn is reminiscent of him doing the same for someone else in the book.
  • Nay-Theist: Sansa seems to have become one, feeling that praying to the gods is useless after what she's been through, although she does value the godswood as a holdover from her childhood memories at Winterfell which she does treasure.
  • New Era Speech:Qyburn gives a bit of a brief one to Pycelle before having him killed.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!:
    • As it turns out, Margaery bargaining with the High Sparrow ultimately put herself and her brother in a worse situation than had she held out.
    • Tommen abolishing Trial by Combat forces Cersei to take more drastic measures.
    • Olenna's scheme to assassinate Joffrey triggered a chain of events that culminates in the death of her entire family. Of course, she was involved with Littlefinger in the plot and didn't count on Cersei's stupid moves.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: Last season, Tyrion's primary criticism of Daenerys's plan to reclaim the throne was that she wouldn't have enough allies to do it. Thanks to Cersei, with some help from the Boltons, it's likely that nearly the entire continent would back Daenerys if it meant tossing Cersei out of that chair.
  • Not So Different:
    • During a feast to celebrate Jaime taking back Riverrun, Walder Frey mentions that they both are kingslayers who are now laughing at those who used to be above them. This does not sit well with Jaime.
    • Cersei, using what can only be described as "wineboarding", tries to get Unella to confess that she had taken personal pleasure out of tormenting Cersei, just like the new queen herself has on so many occasions.
    • Both Cersei and Arya use the "last thing you'll see is me looking down at you" line.
  • Not So Similar: When Walder Frey tries to tell Jaime Lannister how they are "two kingslayers", as if to say they are Not So Different, he ignores that Walder just allowed a king (Robb) into his hall and had his army butchered without even standing up to help, and it was out of spite, not for any good reason. He also broke sacred Guest Right to do it, which is actually considered infinitely worse than kingslaying. On the other hand, Jaime had to become an infamous example of The Oathbreaker for quite some time, and personally killed his king instead of having someone else do it. Furthermore, Jaime was forced to kill the Mad King Aerys II in order to prevent him from blowing up King's Landing out of spite. In all, it paints Walder as more similar to the Mad King than his killer. The expression on Jaime's face says it all.
  • Not So Stoic:
    • Septa Unella is usually quiet and hardly shows any facial expression, but she starts panicking when Cersei leaves her with Ser Gregor.
    • Melisandre is visibly upset when she's trying to defend herself from Davos' accusations. While she was clearly depressed at the start of the season, this is the first time the audience has ever seen her angry or scared.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: Just what did Cersei intend Gregor to do to Unella? It's not revealed, but it was implied to be very slow and painful, and given Gregor's proclivities in life as a Serial Rapist, let's not speculate further.
  • Not Now, Kiddo:
    • Cersei has the Mountain keep Tommen trapped in his room while she enacts her revenge on the Sparrows. Unfortunately, two seasons long of his mother undermining his authority and causing death and destruction finally drives Tommen to suicide.
    • The Queen of Thorns treats the Sand Snakes this way; she even tells them "Let the grown women speak."
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome: Arya Stark not only kills two sons of Walder Frey but is also able to use the kitchens to bake their bits into pies, all undetected!
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Lancel looks understandably terrified when he sees a large cache of wildfire in the catacombs beneath the Great Sept with candles slowly burning down. And even more so right before it blows him up.
    • Margaery has a subtle but extended one when she realizes both Cersei and Tommen are missing from the trial. One thing Cersei won't do is run, so Margaery knows something really bad is about to happen.
    • The High Sparrow becomes terrified once he hears the explosion coming from under the Great Sept.
    • Melisandre's face exhibits this when Davos throws Shireen's burnt stag figurine to her and she realises he knows full well what she's done.
    • Bran when he finds out the truth about Jon.
    • Walder as Arya introduces herself and then draws a knife.
    • Jaime and Bronn's reaction to arriving back at King's Landing to see a huge column of smoke rising over the capital from the ruins of the Sept of Baelor.
    • Pycelle when the little birds draw their knives.
    • Sansa subtly expresses concern when she sees the malicious gears turning in Littlefinger's head during Jon's crowning.
    • Sam when he sees the white ravens flying from the Citadel.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Of the musical variety.
    • The piano/organ/string theme of the trial stands out dramatically from the show's usual score, announcing something terrible is going to happen.
    • Similarly, the complete lack of any music whatsoever in the scene of Tommen's suicide shows even before he kills himself that something bad is about to happen.
    • Tyrion kneels before Daenerys after she named him Hand. While always the most personable Lannister, Tyrion never displays a proper courtesy to both Lords and Kings before until now.
  • Out-Gambitted
    • The Faith Militant and Margaery Tyrell are blindsided by Cersei enacting The Purge.
    • Littlefinger suffers his first truly major setback as Sansa refuses to exercise lordship of the North, with him clearly as a "close advisor", and allows Jon to be chosen king.
  • Outliving One's Offspring:
    • Cersei finally sees all her children die.
    • Lady Olenna survives her son and grandchildren thanks to being sent back to the Reach.
    • Walder unknowingly ate Lothar and Black Walder.
  • Papa Wolf:
    • Mace has to be physically restrained when his son is being given the seven pointed scar.
    • Davos considers Shireen his daughter, and promises Melissandre that he will kill her if he ever sees her again.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • Tyrion is made Hand of the Queen. He is brought to tears by the honor and trust this indicates.
    • Jon opts to exile Melisandre instead of killing her as repayment for her saving his life.
    • Mace Tyrell has been a walking punchline since his debut, but when he breaks down seeing his son and heir renounce his title and confess his sins, Kevan Lannister can be seen laying a hand on his arm to support him.
  • Please Select New City Name: Slaver's Bay is officially renamed the Bay of Dragons in the grand tradition of revolutionaries renaming cities and places under a new regime to give it a more convivial name.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Walder Frey says it's not right to kill Edmure, his son by law, but mostly because "it would give the family a bad name"... as if their reputation could be any worse.
  • Precision F-Strike: Mild, but still potent given her act and who she is talking to, in Margaery's attempt to get the High Sparrow to listen to her about them being Out-Gambitted.
    Margaery: Forget about the bloody gods and listen to what I'm telling you!
  • The Purge: Cersei murders all her enemies in one fell swoop: Grand Maester Pycelle, the High Sparrow, most of his Sparrows, her own Uncle Kevan (Hand of the King), her cousin Lancel, Queen Margaery, Lord Paramount Mace Tyrell, the heir of Highgarden Loras Tyrell, and presumably a significant amount of courtesans and a good chunk of the city as collateral damage. With Tommen being Driven to Suicide as a result of her actions, she becomes the first woman to become Queen and sit on the Iron Throne since Princess Rhaenyra.
  • Put on a Bus: Left at the bus stop, actually. Daario and the Second Sons are left behind in Meereen, ordered to uphold the peace.
  • Pyrrhic Villainy: Cersei manages to blow up all her enemies and takes the Iron Throne for herself. All it cost her was her son's life when he is Driven to Suicide and the last meaningful ally she had left now that every meaningful Lannister besides Jaime (who now likely despises her) is either dead or defected. With the Tyrells now firmly against her, the city is likely to starve, and any surviving Sparrows will certainly rise up against her. On top of that, the Tyrells have allied with Dorne to get revenge and Dorne in turn is joining Daenerys (whose war fleet is already en route to Westeros). The Starks have risen in the North and all the houses therein have declared their fealty to Jon. And for what little it was worth, now House Frey won't be of much help since Walder Frey and his sons have been assassinated by Arya. And that's not including the army of the living dead commanded by a race of Always Chaotic Evil ice demons descending from the far North under the cover of the worst winter predicted in one thousand years to purge all life. Long may she reign.
  • Rank Up: Tyrion is officially named Hand of the Queen by Daenerys, where before he was just an advisor.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
    • Jaime tells Walder Frey outright that nobody likes, respects, or fears the Freys' authority; they fear the Lannisters who had to help the Freys retake their own territory and if the Lannisters have to keep fixing the messes the Freys create for them, they will cut them loose as a liability.
      Jaime: They don't fear the Freys, though. They fear the Lannisters. We gave you the Riverlands to hold the Riverlands. If we have to ride north and take them back for you every time you lose them, why do we need you?
    • Lyanna Mormont shames the Northern houses for not answering the call to battle when the Starks needed them the most.
  • Refuge in Audacity: Lady Mormont calling out the Northern lords for their cowardice and for not coming to the Starks' aid. Being told off by a 10-year-old girl (and the head of a minor house) actually works.
  • The Reveal
    • Jon Snow is actually Lyanna Stark's son (and implied to be Rhaegar's son as well).
    • House Frey's motto is revealed to be "We Stand Together".
  • Revenge Is a Dish Best Served: Frey pie in this case, made with real Freys, which seems an appropriate payment for organizing the Red Wedding.
  • Rhetorical Question Blunder: When he's dumped by Daenerys, Daario asks who could possibly come after the Mother of Dragons. Daenerys dryly responds, "A great number of women, I imagine."
  • Right for the Wrong Reasons: Melisandre points out that her visions came true at Winterfell, but that she was wrong about who wound up winning the battle. Davos dispels any pride she might have gained from that fact by reminding her that her "mistake" cost the lives of thousands of people, and among the thousands, Shireen, the little girl that he loved as a daughter.
    • Lyanna Mormont says that Ned Stark's blood runs through Jon Snow's veins. This is true, but because he's the son of Ned's sister, not of Ned himself.
  • Rule of Symbolism: In relation to the Faith of the Seven, though pinning analogues on all seven would be difficult.
    • Seven named characters in or in relation to the bombing of the Great Sept: Pycelle, Lancel, the High Sparrow, Margaery, Loras, Kevan, and Mace.
    • Alternately, the sept's explosion leads directly to the deaths of seven characters: Lancel, High Sparrow, Margarey, Loras, Kevan, Mace, and Tommen.
  • Rule of Three: Used twice in the "King in the North" scene: Lyanna Mormont calls out houses Manderly, Glover and Cerwyn for refusing the Starks' call; right after that, she proclaims Jon Snow to be her king, followed by Lord Manderly, then Lord Glover, and then every northman in the hall joins in the acclamation.
  • Sanity Slippage: Cersei's is complete, turning her into a Soft-Spoken Sadist Distaff Counterpart to Mad King Aerys II. Bloody hell, is it complete. The death of her final child even drives her so far off the deep end that her reaction is dull and muted.
  • Scenery Gorn: The destruction of the Great Sept of Baelor is horrifying given the amount of people that died in there, but seeing it explode as well as the shots of the skyline with its smoking ruins are wonderfully well made.
  • Scenery Porn: They may be just a few seconds long, but the shots showing the Oldtown skyline and the Citadel's gargantuan library in its glory qualify as such.
  • Screw Destiny: Subverted. Cersei thinks that by killing Margaery, she's undone the prophecy saying that a "younger, more beautiful queen" will one day defeat her. Sadly, Cersei has no idea there's a Queen of Dragons coming for her...
  • Season Finale: The sixth one.
  • Shaming the Mob: Lyanna Mormont calls out the Northern houses for refusing the call of the Starks, despite the Bolton atrocities. All of them swear loyalty right then and there, because she's right and they know it.
    Lyanna Mormont: Your son was butchered at the Red Wedding, Lord Manderly, but you refused the call. You swore allegiance to House Stark, Lord Glover, but in their hour of greatest need, you refused the call. And you, Lord Cerwyn, your father was skinned alive by Ramsay Bolton. Still you refused the call. But House Mormont remembers. The North remembers. We know no king but the King in the North whose name is Stark. I don't care if he's a bastard. Ned Stark's blood runs through his veins. He's my king from this day until his last day.
  • Ship Sinking: Daenerys ordering Daario to stay behind in Meereen was a not-so-subtle way of telling him they are no longer a couple. Later, when talking to Tyrion about it, she admits that she wasn't even particularly bothered by it, but more impatient to get it over with.
  • Shout-Out: Arya Stark serves some "meat pies" and throat-slitting.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!:
    • An example from one antagonist to another in Jaime talking down Walder Frey. When the latter tries posturing how he has defeated his enemies and that they are Not So Different, Jaime tells him outright he is a useless peon and has no respect from anybody, least of all the Lannisters who keep having to bail him out of trouble.
    • When Ellaria and the Sand Snakes try to use diplomacy on Olenna, she promptly tells them to shut up and stay out of affairs that they have no business in. Within less than a minute, she calls them out on being both kingslayers and kinslayers, two of the worst crimes in Westeros, and makes it clear that she doesn't view them as legitimate royalty or political equals.
  • Sickly Green Glow: Lancel chases the Street Urchin into a cellar lined with barrels. It's not until he drops his torch after being stabbed that he notices the green glow of leaking wildfire coming from them.
  • Soft-Spoken Sadist: As her Sanity Slippage reaches its climax, Cersei's talk becomes at once cold and ruthless.
  • Spanner in the Works:
    • Whatever gambits the High Sparrow and Margaery had planned are dashed by Cersei's liberal application of wildfire.
    • On the other hand, in getting Lady Olenna to flee the city, Margaery made sure the most competent woman in their family survived the purge, which Cersei will no doubt regret when House Tyrell joins Daenerys.
    • Littlefinger spent three seasons scheming to get Sansa to become the Warden of Winterfell — and it all goes down in flames after Lady Mormont rallies the rest of the Northern Lords to name Jon their new King.
  • Stepford Snarker: Even as she's grieving for her son and grandchildren, Olenna is witty and snide as ever.
  • Straw Vulcan: Subverted, but invoked. A hurt Daario concludes that Tyrion convinced Dany to leave him at Meereen. When Dany speaks with Tyrion, it's implied that they actually reached the decision together, showing that Daario was underestimating Dany.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Jon Snow greatly resembles his mother Lyanna, inheriting her dark eyes and black hair. He's also a charismatic leader of men the way everyone says Prince Rhaegar was.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: The entire Great Sept of Baelor goes up, along with several blocks of King's Landing.
  • Take Our Word for It: We don't see Tommen's face after he was Driven to Suicide. Given he fell to his death from the Red Keep face first, it can't have been pretty.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork
    • Daenerys' coalition army looks impressive but the egos behind it will clash. Olenna hates the Sand Snakes, the Sand Snakes will not like the idea of working beside Tyrion Lannister (who is also less than likely to be happy at working with the women who murdered his beloved niece in cold blood), none of them like the Ironborn and Varys hates the followers of the Lord of Light who are sure to follow the invasion.
    • The lords of the Vale are vocally not thrilled with allying with Wildlings. It's likely many Northern lords aren't keen on the prospect either, seeing that Smalljohn Umber sided with House Bolton because of it. Sansa is wary of Littlefinger.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil: Cersei finally has no family, no children, no religious fanatics and no in-laws to prevent her from doing whatever she pleases. It's implied that she's left Jaime behind too, as he's shown to have arrived way too late in her scheme.
  • There Is Another: Textbook example. Daenerys isn't the Last Of Her Kind as she believes, but her late brother's son is safe and sound in Westeros.
  • There's No Kill Like Overkill: When the wildfire explodes, some bystanders run away only to be crushed by the giant bell of the Great Sept, and then the wildfire envelops all of them anyway, helpfully putting them out of their misery, just in case the two people who had their bones and skulls broken by the metal bell were somehow still alive.
  • This Means War!: After Cersei kills Olenna's family, Ellaria and Olenna decide to form an alliance together and with Daenerys to get revenge on Cersei.
    Olenna: Cersei stole the future from me. She killed my son. She killed my grandson. She killed my granddaughter. Survival is not what I'm after now.
  • Time Bomb: A medieval equivalent. Several lit candles are left in pools of wildfire nearby an entire cache of it under the Sept of Baelor. Once the candles burn down, the wildfire is ignited.
  • Token Evil Teammate:
    • The Sand Snakes are this in Team Daenerys, a pack of murderous psychopaths who threw their own relatives under the bus, as Olenna notes with disgust. But since they hate the Lannisters, they ally with Olenna and Daenerys.
    • Melisandre initially seemed to be like this but then Jon and Davos kick her out. That only leaves Littlefinger, whose grand plan is to turn Sansa against Jon and claim the Iron Throne with her as his Queen.
  • Traitor Shot: When Jon is crowned by the now enthusiastic bannermen, the focus moves several times to the unhappy face of Baelish, who is obviously up to no good after being scorned by Sansa.
  • Tranquil Fury: Regardless of how he acts from now on, it's still obvious that Jaime is utterly seething at Cersei's coronation.
  • Trash the Set: The Great Sept of Baelor, where many of the King's Landing scenes took place in the past two seasons, is spectacularly and utterly destroyed by a widlfire explosion. Lampshaded by Qyburn, who mentions that it will no longer be available for Tommen's funeral.
  • Traveling at the Speed of Plot: Word of God is that two journeys needed to be fast-forwarded to maintain narrative momentum:
    • Varys left Meereen two episodes ago. In that time, he manages a round trip to Dorne and is back in Meereen by the time Daenerys is ready to set sail. Possibly subverted, however; there are clearly Tyrell and Martell ships in Daenerys' fleet, so Varys most likely sailed with them before rejoining Daenerys.
    • Two episodes ago, Arya Stark was last seen preparing to leave Braavos. In that time, she's managed to reach and infiltrate the Twins, adopt a disguise and somehow carved up two of Walder Frey's sons. Granted, she doesn't have to travel nearly as far (Braavos is only a short way away from the Vale of Arryn and is the Northernmost of the Free Cities), but considering all her travelling on foot in the Riverlands in Seasons 3-4, it's still a stretch for her to suddenly teleport from the Vale to the Twins (just a little south of the Neck from the North).
  • Triumphant Reprise: The title theme plays in major key when Jon becomes king.
  • Turn in Your Badge: Just before he leaps to his death, Tommen removes the crown from his head and tosses it, clearly aware that he failed as a king.
  • Tyrant Takes the Helm: Cersei reigns supreme at King's Landing after murdering all her immediate enemies.
  • Understatement: Qyburn tactfully tells the quiet, crazed Queen Cersei that the Great Sept of Baelor will not be available for a funeral ceremony for Tommen. The same sept that they've just blown to kingdom come and turned into a smoking pile of ruins.
  • Undying Loyalty:
    • Tyrion declares his loyalty to Daenerys by telling her that he used to be a cynic but meeting her gave him something to believe in. This earns him the title of Hand of the Queen.
    • The houses of the North reaffirm their loyalty to House Stark, vowing to never betray it again, and to Jon Snow specifically.
  • Unexpected Successor:
    • When the show started, Jon Snow was the illegitimate son of Lord Eddard Stark about to join the Night's Watch, which disqualified him in multiple ways from ever inheriting anything. Now, while Sansa is Lady of Winterfell, Jon is proclaimed the King in the North. Then viewers find out that Jon, while he's a Stark (via his mother Lyanna Stark, Ned Stark's sister), is also technically a Targaryen as well, via his biological father, Prince Rhaegar Targaryen, with a possible claim to the Iron Throne (it's yet to be seen if he's a trueborn son of Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen). As such, his claim could potentially be considered just as strong as Daenerys's (with him being her older brother's son, he would have a stronger claim to the throne if he is not the illegitimate son of Rhaegar and Lyanna — considering also that Rhaegar was still married to Elia Martell when Jon was conceived).
      • In context, Ned Stark avoided telling Jon the truth about his birth to protect him from Robert Baratheon's wrath and to keep Jon safe from the Baratheon regime as Robert Baratheon would have killed Jon if any hint of Jon's true parentage ever came out. As such, by joining the Night's Watch, Jon was kept safe from the Baratheon wrath if this information ever got out but he was also unwittingly renouncing any royal claims... only now, he's no longer a crow... and he's the King in the North now.
    • Cersei had a fair bit of power, but it depended on her position as Robert's wife and later as Joffrey's and Tommen's mother. At best, she might have created a position of power for herself similar to that exercised by Olenna Tyrell. No one ever expected that she would be able to seize the Iron Throne for herself.
  • The Un-Reveal: Whatever Jon's birth name was, we don't get to hear it, as Lyanna's dying whispers become inaudible.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom:
    • Both Tyrion and Jaime could have prevented the wildfire blast had they been more proactive about making sure no surplus stock remained beneath the city to be found by someone else later. By not taking this preventive measure, they doomed hundreds to their fiery deaths.
    • The High Sparrow doomed himself when he abolished Trial by Combat, forcing Cersei to use the wildfire cache to escape judgement.
  • Verbal Backspace: Ellaria offers an alliance to Olenna, telling her that their survival depends on cooperation. Since her family is dead and her house all but ruined thanks to Cersei, survival is the last thing on Olenna's mind. Ellaria clarifies that she can offer vengeance and justice, instead.
  • Villainous Friendship: Walder Frey, retreading some of the banter displayed with Roose Bolton, tries to bond with Jaime Lannister. Jaime is having none of it.
  • Wham Episode: One of the biggest in the show's history; even book readers were shocked by some of these events:
    • Jon becomes the King in the North with his true parentage revealed at last (though not in-universe beyond Bran): Lyanna Stark is his mother (while Rhaegar Targaryen is also confirmed to be his father) and Ned is his uncle.
    • Cersei kills the majority of the characters in King's Landing, which also causes Tommen to kill himself, and afterwards declares herself Queen.
    • Arya assassinates Walder Frey and his sons.
    • Daenerys finally departs for Westeros.
    • The Martells and Tyrells are approached by Varys to join the Targaryen cause.
    • It's finally Winter, meaning that it's now an ideal time for the White Walkers to invade Westeros, provided they can get past the magical Wall specifically built to bar their entry. Dragons will no doubt come in handy against them too.
  • Wham Line
    • Pycelle meets his maker.
      Qyburn: Whatever your faults, you don't deserve to die alone in such a cold, dark place.
    • Walder orders his sons to come to his presence, while eating pie.
      Serving girl: They are already here, my lord. Here, my lord.
    • After six years of waiting.
      Sansa: Jon, a raven came from the Citadel. A white raven. Winter is here.
    • An alliance is formed:
      Ellaria: Vengeance. Justice.
      Varys: Fire and blood.
    • A new king is elected.
      Lyanna: Bear Island knows no king, but the King in the North whose name is Stark. I don't care if he's a bastard. Ned Stark's blood runs through his veins. He's my king. From this day, until his last day.
    • Lyanna Stark's Dying Wish to both young Ned Stark and time-traveling Bran:
      Lyanna Stark: You have to protect him.
  • Wham Shot:
    • The reveal of the wildfire sitting just below the Sept, along with the candle melted low enough to ignite it.
    • Varys Emerging from the Shadows during Ellaria and Olenna's conversation at Dorne.
    • The cut from the face of Lyanna's infant child to that of an adult Jon Snow, indicating they are one and the same.
  • What You Are in the Dark: It's unclear how fatal Lancel's stab wounds would have been (though he does seem to be at least paralyzed from the waist down), but he still heroically tries to save everyone else, and it's unlikely anyone will ever know. Even if he had succeeded and the stab wound had turned out to be non fatal, it's highly likely he would have died of starvation, nowhere far from the wildfire bomb.
  • While Rome Burns: Cersei triumphantly takes a sip of wine as she watches the Great Sept and a good chunk of King's Landing burn in the distance. She then uses the rest of her glass to "wineboard" the captive Unella.
  • Who's Laughing Now?: Septa Unella spent the past season humiliating and torturing Cersei in her cell and taking pleasure in it. In this episode, Cersei pays Unella back in spades by offering her to Gregor, leaving her with the words "Shame, shame, shame" just as Unella used to say to her during the torture.
  • Would Hurt a Child:
    • Davos and Jon are outraged after learning Melisandre sacrificed Shireen Baratheon. Davos wants to immediately execute her, but Jon exiles her instead.
    • Pycelle knocks down two of Qyburn's little birds. To be fair, they were about to shank him.
  • Written by the Winners: Jon, having been the Frontline General during the Battle of Winterfell, is given entire credit for the defeat of the Boltons by the rest of the Northern Lords. This is despite the fact that the battle was almost lost until Sansa and Baelish arrived with reinforcements from the Vale. Jon, for his part, tries to downplay the praise he is being given but gets named the new King in the North regardless.
  • You Are Too Late: Lancel could have defused the wildfire time bomb by blowing out the three trigger candles, had he had about two more minutes to take care of it.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: Cersei doesn't realize that the prophecy of her falling to a younger, more beautiful queen is still on track.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: The magic of the Wall precludes Benjen Stark from ever returning south, which is a slight Retcon since wights attacked Jeor Mormont in Season 1 at Castle Black (which is right outside the Wall). Then again, those wights were brought in.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: A non-lethal variety; under Tyrion's advice, Daenerys decides to leave Daario behind in Meereen since he would no longer serve any purpose going forward in Westeros.
  • Your Approval Fills Me with Shame: Jaime's reaction to Walder Frey's Not So Different observation.
  • You Said You Would Let Them Go: Margaery is aghast when the High Sparrow has their mark cut into Loras's forehead in spite of the deal she made with the High Sparrow. The High Sparrow insists that Loras will be allowed to return home, as promised.

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