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Recap / Game of Thrones S8E4: "The Last of the Starks"

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The Long Night is over. Outside the walls of Winterfell, the survivors of the battle for the Dawn mourn and bid farewell to those who died fighting. Daenerys weeps over Jorah's funeral bier, mourning for the oldest friend she had. Sansa does the same for Theon, pinning a direwolf head pin to his chest, acknowledging him as a true Stark at the end. Arya and Sam grimly look over the bodies of Edd and Beric, mourning the men who saved their lives at the cost of their own, while Jon mourns over Lyanna Mormont, the girl whose faith and loyalty to House Stark set the current path of his life in motion. Jon delivers a heartfelt eulogy, noting that the fallen put aside their differences and fought together against an evil that threatened to devour them all. "Everyone in this world owes them a debt that can never be repaid" Jon declares. "It is our duty and our honour to keep them alive in memory, for those who come after us, and those who come after them, for as long as men draw breath! They were the shields that guard the realms of men, and we shall never see their like again." The gathered begin to light the pyres, sending the fallen to their rest, and denying any would be necromancer the chance to defile their rest again.


A somber feast of remembrance is held in the Great Hall at Winterfell. Daenerys addresses Gendry, noting him as Robert Baratheon's son. A wary Gendry admits he didn't know Robert's identity as his father until after the former was dead. Daenerys also adds that Stannis and Renly are also dead, which leaves the lordship of Storm's End unclaimed... but no longer. She declares him Gendry Baratheon, Lord of Storm's End, and lawful son of Robert Baratheon. As Davos leads the toasts to the new lord, and the others gather 'round him to offer congratulations, Tyrion compliments Daenerys on ensuring the new lord of Storm's End will be perpetually loyal to her.

As the feast progresses, Brienne and Jaime sit together to celebrate and Davos talks to Tyrion about Melisandre's final moments, "The last time I saw her, I told her I'd kill her if I ever saw her again," but reveals he never got the chance because Melisandre did it to herself — or the Lord of Light was the one responsible, "We play his game for him, we fight his war and win, and then he fucks off. No signs, no blessings, who knows what he wants?" Tyrion replies he doesn't think pondering over this will make him any happier. Davos says he's not trying to be happy and Tyrion says, "You're in luck. We may have defeated them, but we still have us to contend with."


Tyrion talks with Bran and notes it would be useful for a Lord of Winterfell to know their history better than anyone. However, Bran replies he's not Lord of Winterfell and doesn't want it, "I don't really want anymore." Tyrion envies Bran but Bran tells him not to, "Mostly I live in the past."

Meanwhile, Tormund and Sansa are encouraging Jon to chug an entire horn of wine in one go. Tormund tells him, "We have to celebrate our victory!" Jon smiles, "Vomiting is not celebrating." Tormund replies, "Yes, it is!" and toasts, "To the Dragon Queen!" All cheer and Daenerys gets up to toast Arya Stark, "The hero of Winterfell!" All cheer again — this even solicits a smile from the Hound. Jon and Daenerys share a happy moment, which doesn't go unnoticed by Sansa, who gets up to leave the table.

Meanwhile, Tyrion, Brienne, Podrick, and Jaime enjoy themselves by playing a drinking game. They decide to field a series of questions at a good-natured Brienne. At the high table, Tormund drunk hypes Jon and their history of becoming Fire-Forged Friends. Holding his giant horn of wine, Tormund continues that Jon just keeps fighting and fighting, he even climbed on a dragon and fought, at which point Jon turns to look at Daenerys. She gives him a smile and raises her glass and Jon returns the smile. But Daenerys's initially spirited mood grows more and more unhappy as she sees the crowd of people around Jon, drinking and palling around with him. She looks around the hall to see the other groups of people laughing and talking — while she finds herself outside of the groups. Her downcast mood does not go unnoticed by Varys as Daenerys gets up to leave.

It's Brienne's turn to field questions at Tyrion, who correctly guesses that Tyrion was married, before Sansa. They continue the game until Tyrion drunkenly realizes Brienne is a virgin. To cover for Brienne, Pod takes a drink. Somewhat impaired, Brienne gets up to "take a piss". Tormund approaches Brienne, "We did it! We faced those icy fucks. Looked right into their blue eyes, and here we are!" Brienne excuses herself, prompting Tormund to find the Hound and tell him about how his heart is broken by Brienne's rejection — until a new girl approaches him, "You can touch me. I'm not afraid of wildlings." Tormund's all better now, tells the Hound it's time to drown their sorrows, and leaves with the girl.

Sansa watches as the Hound rejects a girl's advances. She comes over to his table and says, "She could have made you happy — for a little while." The Hound growls about only one thing being able to make him happy and that's his business. He notes how Sansa could barely look at him before but Sansa says that was a long time ago, she's seen much worse than him since then. The Hound has heard. Sansa tells him, "He got what he deserved. I gave it to him." When the Hound asks, "How?" Sansa replies, "Hounds." They smile. The Hound says that Sansa has changed. Sansa's smile dies. The Hound said it wouldn't have happened if Sansa had left King's Landing with him. Sansa looks sad and thoughtful. She notes that without the hardships she's been through, she would have stayed a 'little bird' all her life.

Outside, where in the courtyard, those celebrating are a bit more raucous, Gendry finds Arya, practicing her archery (seemingly she's not comfortable at feasts anymore). He informs her of his new status as Lord of Storm's End. Arya sincerely congratulates him but Gendry isn't finished; he might not know anything about being a lord, but he knows he loves Arya. Going down on one knee, Gendry proposes, asking Arya to marry him, "All I know is that you're beautiful, and I love you, and none of it will be worth anything if you're not with me. So be with me. Be my wife. Be the Lady of Storm's End." Arya is touched but despite her obvious feelings for him, she declines, "You'll be a wonderful lord, and any lady would be lucky to have you. But I'm not a lady. I never have been. That's not me."

After the feast ends, Daenerys finds Jon alone in his quarters, nursing the beginnings of a hangover. Jon tells her, "I didn't know Ser Jorah well but I know this. If he could have chosen a way to die, it would have been protecting you." Dany sadly admits Jorah was in love with her, but she couldn't love him the same way, not the way she loves Jon. Jon and Dany begin to kiss and start to get it on — until Jon stops himself, still uncomfortable about their new relation. Dany laments that he ever told her the truth, wishing they could go back to how it was before, "If I didn't know, I'd be happy right now. I try to forget. Tonight I did for a while, and then I saw them gathered around you. I saw the way they looked at you. I know that look. So many people have looked at me that way, but never here. Never on this side of the sea."

Jon insists he doesn't want the throne, but Dany snaps that's irrelevant; he didn't want to be King in the North, but he was still made so. What happens, she asks, when people start pushing him to press his claim to the Iron Throne over hers? Jon, going on one knee before her, insists he'll refuse, "You are my queen, I don't know what else I can say." Dany insists that he can say nothing; tell no one else about his parentage, swear Sam and Bran to secrecy and keep the secret before the knowledge spreads out of control. Taking Jon's hand in hers, Dany looks at him with tears in her eyes, "I want it to be the way it was between us." Jon clasps her hand with his and insists he must tell Sansa and Arya, they are still his family. Dany sighs and replies that Sansa will want Jon on the throne over her. Jon swears Sansa won't do that. Dany tells him, "She's not the girl you grew up with. Not after she's seen. Not after what they've done to her." Jon replies he owes them the truth but Dany says the truth will destroy them. Jon refuses to believe this, "It won't." Dany replies, "It will." Tearfully, Dany implores, "I've never begged for anything but I'm begging you. Don't do this. Please." Jon cups Dany's face in his hands and swears, "You are my queen. Nothing will change that. And they are my family. We can live together." Dany tells him, "We can. I just told you how."

Elsewhere in Winterfell, Jaime and Brienne finally give into their mutual attraction. Brienne admits she's never been with a man before, while Jaime confesses he's never been with any woman but Cersei, before the couple disrobe and indulge in a night of passion.

The next morning, the Northern-Targaryen alliance count their losses. The army of the dead destroyed about fifty percent of their forces; with Cersei's bolstered by the Golden Company and the Iron Fleet, the odds have shifted. Missandei suggests spreading word of their victory against the undead, but Daenerys insists Cersei will ensure no word of it gets out. The only option they have is to hit King's Landing hard and cut the head off the snake. Tyrion argues that their goal is to defeat Cersei without leaving the capital a smoldering ruin in the process. Varys offers good news — Yara Greyjoy has reclaimed the Iron Islands, the new Prince of Dorne pledges his allegiance but Dany dismisses it as irrelevant; as long as Cersei holds King's Landing and the Iron Throne, she can keep declaring herself Queen. Tyrion suggests inciting the people against Cersei, the way they turned against Joffrey when conditions became unbearable. Jon agrees, suggesting they surround the capital, cut off its supply lines, destroy the Iron Fleet if it tries to ferry in food and defeat Cersei's armies when they're too weak to do battle, "Once the people see that Cersei is our only enemy, her reign is over." Sansa interjects, arguing their armies are still recuperating from the last battle they fought, "They'll fight better if they have time to rest and recuperate." Daenerys asks how long Sansa thinks that will be but Sansa admits she is uncertain, not without talking to the officers. Fuming with anger, Dany growls "I came north to fight alongside you at great cost to my armies and myself. Now that the time has come to reciprocate, you want to postpone." Sansa points out it's not just the northmen; Daenerys's own forces aren't ready to fight another major battle but Daenerys replies biding their time just gives Cersei a greater opportunity to fortify her position. Jon insists the Northerners will uphold their side of the alliance. Tyrion suggests they divide their forces; Jon and Davos will take the Northern forces, plus what's left of the Dothraki down the Kingsroad to lay siege to King's Landing, while Daenerys takes the Unsullied by sea to Dragonstone to assault the city from there. Daenerys assures her people with the Great War won, all that remains is the Last War. Once Cersei is defeated, men and women can again live without fear or cruelty... under the rule of their rightful queen. Sansa and Arya exchange tense looks, something not unnoticed by Jon. After everyone leaves, the Stark ladies tell their brother they want a word with him.

Jon, Arya, Sansa, and Bran gather in the Winterfell Godswood. Jon remonstrates with his sisters. "You understand we'd all be dead if not for her. We'd be corpses marching down to King's Landing!" When Sansa points out Arya was the one who slew the Night King, Jon retorts it was many of Daenerys's soldiers who gave their lives fighting the army of the dead so Arya had that chance. Sansa agrees that sacrifice shouldn't be forgotten, but it doesn't mean she'll automatically bend the knee to Daenerys. Jon reminds his sisters he swore himself and the north to her cause; Arya interjects, saying she respects Jon's reasons for doing so, "We needed her. We needed her army, her dragons. You did the right thing. And we're doing the right thing telling you we don't trust your queen." Jon replies they don't know Daenerys yet and Arya says she'll never know her, "She's not one of us." Jon responds, "If you only trust the people you grew up with, you won't make many allies!" Arya's cool with that because she doesn't need many allies, "My family. The four of us. The last of the Starks." Jon says he's not a Stark but Sansa urges that he is, "You're as much Ned Stark's child as any of us," and Arya goes up to Jon, "You're my brother. Not my half-brother or my bastard brother but my brother." Jon closes his eyes and then looks to Bran, who tells Jon, "It's your choice." Jon says he needs to tell them something and swears his sisters to secrecy. When Sansa balks, Jon says he needs her to swear she'll not tell another living soul, "Because we're family." Once Arya and Sansa swear it, Jon asks Bran to tell them the truth of his parentage.

In a Winterfell tavern, Jaime and Tyrion exchange jokes over Jaime and Brienne having become an item; Tyrion admits he's happy for his brother, though he does push for details, much to his brother's exasperated amusement, and expresses his glee at finally being able to tell tall-person jokes. Unfortunately, the happy moment of fraternal bonding is interrupted by the arrival of Ser Bronn of the Blackwater; Tyrion questions what his former hireling is doing in the north, while Jaime is more concerned what Bronn is doing with a loaded crossbow. Bronn takes a seat and gets straight to business. "You boys are a pair of gold plated cunts, do you know that?! Year after year, I've shovelled Lannister shit, and what do I have to show?!" Tyrion retorts that Bronn is a knight thanks to him; Bronn snaps back that was due to his own talents on the battlefield, and without land or coin to back it up, the title is worthless. Tyrion tries to wax poetic about the nature of power but Bronn isn't interested in hearing it, amply demonstrating that with a punch to the face when Tyrion doesn't get the hint. Jaime tries to defend his brother, only to find himself facing a crossbow bolt point blank. "You couldn't do it on your best day, you one-handed fuck, and your best days are long gone!" Bronn sneers. Helping himself to ale, Bronn gets to the core of the matter; Cersei offered him Riverrun as payment for killing the two of them. It's a good offer, but even with the casualties they suffered against the undead, in Bronn's view the odds still favour Daenerys, and Cersei can't pay up if she winds up with her head on a spike. However, if Daenerys's Hand and some of her commanders into the bargain turn up dead, the odds might shift.

Tyrion interrupts to remind Bronn of the deal they had; that if anyone paid Bronn to kill him, he'd pay double. Bronn asks what's double Riverrun; "Highgarden" Tyrion retorts, clearly piquing Bronn's greed. Jaime is incredulous, calling Bronn's threats to kill them a bluff, but a crossbow bolt in the wall an inch from his head changes that opinion. Jaime furiously snarls Highgarden won't belong to a cutthroat; Bronn retorts that the ancestors of House Lannister and all the Great Houses all started out the same as him. Tyrion tries to convince Bronn to join them, as they could make use of his knowledge of King's Landing's defences. Bronn flatly refuses; he's done fighting for the Lannisters, but if they screw him over again, he won't be above killing them. "I'll come find you when the war is done" Bronn promises. "Until then, don't die."

The next morning, Daenerys pays a visit to her dragons, smiling happily as she sees Rhaegal take to the air, his wounds from his battle with his undead brother healing. Up on the battlements of Winterfell, Tyrion approaches Sansa as she watches the dragons from a distance. Sansa asks Tyrion why he follows Daenerys. Demurring, Tyrion notes that Daenerys is in love with Jon; Sansa retorts that doesn't mean she'll make a good queen. Tyrion opines that Sansa seems determined for there to be bad blood between the women of Houses Stark and Targaryen, insisting that a good relationship between the Iron Throne and the North has been essential to peace in Westeros. Sansa notes that with Jon as Warden of the North, that shouldn't be a problem, but Tyrion replies that Jon will become Daenerys's consort; it's unlikely he'll ever return to the North, meaning Sansa will be ruling in Jon's stead, and Tyrion insists he'd feel a lot better knowing she and Daenerys will be allies. Tyrion agrees that Sansa and Daenerys don't have to like each other, but it surely can't be in the North's best interests or the interests of the Starks to deliberately provoke her...only for Sansa to interrupt him, accusing Tyrion of being afraid of Daenerys. Tyrion tries to cover it, but Sansa admits she's afraid too...afraid for Jon's safety; the men of House Stark tend to come to a terrible end when they venture into the capital. Tyrion agrees, but notes Jon's oft-repeated view he's not a Stark. Tyrion insists that Daenerys is beloved of her forces, that she is the rightful Queen and he believes in her vision of making the world a better place. As Tyrion moves to leave, Sansa calls him back, asking him "What if there was someone else? Someone better?"...

In the courtyards of Winterfell, Jon prepares to leave for King's Landing. He bids his farewells to Tormund, who tells him that he's taking the free folk back north, "We've had enough of the south. The women down here don't like me." Jon smiles, "This is the North, you know. And the free folk are welcome to stay." Tormund says it's not home and he'll take his people back to the farther regions of the north, "Back where we belong." Jon looks at Ghost, "It's where he belongs. A direwolf has no place in the south." He asks Tormund to take Ghost with him, "He'll be happier up there." "So would you," Tormund replies. Jon agrees, "I wish I was going with you." They bid their farewells but Tormund says they may see each other again, you never know. They hug and Tormund tells Jon, "You've got the north in you. The real north." Jon then says his good-byes to Sam and Gilly and realizes Gilly is pregnant. Sam explains there wasn't much to do in Oldtown, there are only so many books you can read. Jon and Sam share a long hug. Sam says Jon is the best friend he ever had and Jon replies, "You too, Sam." As Jon leaves, he stops when he hears Ghost whine. Jon and his direwolf exchange a Meaningful Look before Jon must get on his horse to go. Tormund, Ghost, Sam, and Gilly watch Jon leave Winterfell.

On the road south from Winterfell, Sandor, heading south alone to finish his business with Gregor, finds himself joined by Arya, who's got her own score to settle in the capital. Sandor notes this is likely to be a one-way trip for both of them, but Arya is fine with that.

As the Targaryen fleet sails towards Dragonstone, Daenerys mounted on the back of Drogon with Rhaegal alongside, Missandei and Grey Worm share a happy moment on the ship's prow. Unfortunately, below decks, Tyrion and Varys are discussing far more grim matters. Tyrion sadly notes the last twenty blood-soaked years of Westerosi history are all the result of Robert Baratheon being in love with a woman who didn't feel the same. Varys asks how many know the truth of Jon's parentage. "Including us? Eight," Tyrion replies. "Then it's not a secret anymore. It's information," Varys retorts. Sooner or later, it will get out, and what happens then? Tyrion answers, "[Dany] loses the North. She loses the Vale, Sansa will make sure of that." Varys says it's worse than that, "He has the better claim to the throne," and dismisses Tyrion's protests Jon doesn't want the throne; he's a charismatic, beloved war hero who people are drawn to. Tyrion suggests, since Jon and Daenerys are clearly in love, a marriage between the two might solve the problem; marriage between relations wasn't a barrier to the Targaryens before. Varys agrees, but notes the northern born and raised Jon is unlikely to be comfortable with such a custom, not to mention Daenerys is unlikely to want to share power. Tyrion ends the discussion by noting it could all be rendered moot if Cersei defeats them.

In the skies above the fleet, Daenerys watches with clear maternal pride as Rhaegal keeps up with Drogon, seemingly healing well from the wounds inflicted by Viserion — until a ballista bolt slams into his chest. The green dragon screeches in agony as a second missile tears a bloody furrow in his wing, before a third fatally skewers him through the throat. Horrified, Daenerys and all those aboard the fleet can do nothing but watch as Rhaegal plummets, crashing into the sea in an explosion of foam and blood. Then another missile narrowly misses Dany's head and the culprits reveal themselves: the Silence and a dozen other Greyjoy ships emerge from a nearby cove, each one armed with one of Qyburn's scorpions on its prow. Euron himself aims the one mounted aboard his flagship, all taking aim as Daenerys, screaming in enraged fury, guides Drogon into a dive, determined to avenge her murdered child. The Greyjoy flotilla lets loose another volley of bolts, and Daenerys is forced to bank away at the last second to avoid her only remaining dragon being shot down. Euron's disappointment at being denied the chance to kill a second dragon quickly fades as he turns his sights on Daenerys's fleet and takes aim. The Targaryen fleet can do nothing as volley after volley of fire tears their ships apart. In the aftermath of the attack, the survivors struggle ashore on the beaches of Dragonstone; Varys, Tyrion and Grey Worm, amongst others, have made it, but to the latter's horror, Missandei is nowhere to be seen.

In King's Landing, Cersei watches as scores of citizens stream into the Red Keep's courtyard; Qyburn informs her with news of Daenerys's advance, the citizenry are grateful for their queen's protection. Euron assures her of Rhaegal's death; Cersei (seemingly remembering her need to keep him satisfied) compliments his actions and assures Euron when the war is done, the offspring of the lion and the kraken will rule both the land and sea. Euron looks at Qyburn, who nods to confirm that Cersei is pregnant. Aware that Daenerys will come for her soon enough, Cersei tells Qyburn to keep the gates open to the citizens; if Daenerys wants to take the castle, she'll have to slaughter her way through thousands of innocent people first. "So much for the Breaker of Chains," Cersei sneers to a chained Missandei as she leaves.

On Dragonstone, in the Hall of the Painted Table, Daenerys plans for the assault on King's Landing. Grey Worm assures his Queen the Unsullied will storm the city and slaughter her enemies, but Varys protests, "I promised I would look you in the eye and speak directly if I ever thought you were making a mistake," he reminds her. "This is a mistake." Daenerys, unmoved, reminds him of Rhaegal's murder and Missandei's capture, but Varys argues while Cersei must be destroyed, if they arbitrarily attack the capital now, tens of thousands of innocent people Cersei is using as human shields will die and Dany's reign will be forever tainted. Varys begs her not to become the type of despot she has always fought against, "I beg you, Your Grace. Do not destroy the city you came to save. Do not become what you have always struggled to defeat." Daenerys, however, insists that everything she has seen has shown she was meant to rid the world of tyrants, "That is my destiny," she proclaims, "and I will see it through, no matter the cost.". As Varys stares at her in defeat, Tyrion interjects, noting it could take a fortnight for Jon and the rest of their forces to reach King's Landing; to buy time, they should demand Cersei surrender, offer her life in exchange for the throne. Daenerys refuses, but Tyrion argues if it prevents carnage, then they should take that chance. Daenerys thinks it a waste of time, but concedes it might be better for people to see her being magnanimous, and to see Cersei throw Dany's mercy back in her face. "They should know who to blame when the sky falls down upon them."

In the throne room that night, Varys and Tyrion grimly discuss their situation; Varys grimly notes that most of the tyrants he's served before Daenerys all talked about destiny just as she did. Tyrion replies that she walked into a fire with three stones and emerged with three dragons; how could she not believe in destiny? Varys speculates that might be the problem, that Daenerys's life has instilled in her the belief she is The Chosen One to the point it's become an obsession...and there's also the problem of Jon, which as Varys insinuates, could also prove a solution; he's more reasonable and temperate than Dany, and the fact he's the male heir to the throne is far more likely to appeal to the nobility of Westeros. Tyrion reiterates his proposal Jon and Dany rule as King and Queen, in the hope Jon can check her darker side. "As you have?" Varys snarks. "You're drinking quite a lot". Jon is too cowed and submissive to Daenerys, Varys concludes; if they ruled together, she would simply suborn him to her way of thinking. With his Stark and Targaryen parentage, Jon might be the only person who can keep the North in the Seven Kingdoms, Varys states. Tyrion challenges Varys, stating at some point he has to serve someone he believes in, and that with their counsel, Daenerys will rule wisely, but Varys reminds Tyrion he made it plain his loyalty was to the common people of Westeros, thousands of whom will die if yet another despot takes the Iron Throne. Varys insists he won't betray matter the personal cost. "Each of us has a choice to make" he tells Tyrion. "I pray we choose wisely."

News reaches Winterfell of the ambush. Sansa notes to Jaime that there is no way Daenerys will allow Cersei to peacefully surrender now. Despite Brienne pleading for him not to, he packs up and starts south.

Outside the walls of King's Landing, Daenerys, Varys, Tyrion, and Grey Worm stand with a small company of Unsullied with them as an honor guard. Opposite them, atop the walls' ramparts are Cersei, Euron, the Mountain, and Missandei, the latter is standing behind the former, a deliberate gesture of what Cersei intends to do with her. The walls are packed with ballistas and teams ready to use them. The gates open and Qyburn steps out, with intent to speak. Seeing as Cersei's Hand has stepped forward, Tyrion steps forward in return. The two Hands speak and deliver their demands: Tyrion calls for Cersei to step down and surrender to Queen Daenerys, along with the immediate release of Missandei. Qyburn counters with that Daenerys surrenders to Queen Cersei, or Missandei of Naath will be executed immediately. Tyrion wants no bloodshed and neither does Qyburn, but they're both servants of vicious women who will refuse to stand down before the other. Tyrion urges Qyburn to convince Cersei her reign is at an end; Qyburn dismisses the suggestion, pointing out that Daenerys has only one dragon left and the Lannister forces, bolstered by the Golden Company, far outnumber the Targaryens. Fed up with Qyburn's snide boasts, Tyrion pushes past the disgraced maester and marches off to plead directly to Cersei. Dozens of Lannister archers take aim but Cersei stands them down, waiting to see what her brother has to say.

"I know you don't care about your people," Tyrion desperately pleads. "Why should you? They hate you and you hate them" Tyrion calls out. "But you're not a monster. I know this. I know this because I've seen it. You've always loved your children, more than yourself, more than Jaime. More than anything. I beg you, if not for yourself, then for your child. Your reign is over...but that doesn't mean your life has to end. It doesn't mean your baby has to die."

For a brief moment, Cersei is hesitant, clutching Missandei's arm. But then she whispers to the captive if she has any final words to speak. Cersei has no intention of letting her throne and reign be taken from her. Steeling herself for death and knowing the outcome of this, Missandei delivers just the one word: "Dracarys."

With a nod from Cersei, as Daenerys and her companions watch in horror, Gregor draws his sword and beheads Missandei, sending both head and body off the ramparts.

Grey Worm is despondent, looking away in horror and Varys unnerved. Tyrion has played his last card and Daenerys is furious. Without a word, she storms off. Everyone in her court has been worried that she would be the same as her father and more. With the loss of her second dragon, the death of her best friend and knight and now the execution of Missandei, Daenerys is done. She intends to do what Missandei said to them all.

The battle of Winterfell is over. The battle for the Iron Throne is about to begin.


  • A Death in the Limelight: Rhaegal gets more individual focus here than ever before, both in screen time and conversation among the characters, and winds up dead two thirds into the episode. The sudden focus comes off as almost suspicious.
  • Accentuate the Negative: Tyrion calls out Varys for doing it, namely him taking offense at Daenerys for behaving how any ruler or King before her would or ought to behave in her situation. He points out that Dany has every right to be worried about her authority and word being followed, and when Varys brings up how her advisers are worried about her moods, Tyrion points out that happens to be their job as courtiers.
  • A Man Is Always Eager: Sandor averts this. When a pretty girl offers to have sex with him, he makes it clear (a little rudely) that he's not interested and goes back to getting drunk. She doesn't take the hint, and keeps trying to seduce him. He barks at her to go away. Sansa even tells Sandor that she could have made him happy if he said yes, as if he shouldn't have said no.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: Sandor can’t help but laugh when Sansa says she had Ramsay fed to his hounds, for obvious reasons. He also chuckles after he asks Arya if she will leave him to die again and she answers "probably".
  • Adaptation Deviation:
    • If Varys is to be believed, in the show the Starks have never had aunt-nephew or uncle-niece marriages. The World of Ice and Fire shows two uncle-niece marriages on their family tree in the last 10 generations.
    • Gendry claims to have had the surname Rivers before Daenerys legitimized him. Bastard surnames require their noble parent to acknowledge them as their issue, and are tied to the bastard's place of upbringing or the one associated with their noble parent. Bastards with no known noble parent are considered mere peasants and have no surnames. King Robert was never aware of Gendry, never mind acknowledged him, and Gendry was born and raised in King's Landing, where nobles' bastards are given the surname Waters, while Baratheon bastards are usually surnamed Storm for the Stormlands. There's no known tie that would see him surnamed Rivers, which is the bastard surname of the Riverlands. From the books... 
  • Adult Fear: Sansa admits to Tyrion that she's afraid for Jon's safety if he leaves Winterfell to go south with Daenerys. Considering her father, older brother, uncle and grandfather all died horrific deaths when they ventured south, it's hard to fault her.
  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg:
    • Daenerys tearfully begs Jon not to reveal the truth of his parentage to his sisters so she and Jon can go back to how things were, as she fears people will press his claim against hers, no matter how Jon refuses the crown. She even lampshades this.
    Daenerys: [in tears] I've never begged for anything... But I'm begging you now.
    • Tyrion gives a small and quiet one to Varys once he realises that the Spider intends to betray their queen.
    • Tyrion desperately pleads with Cersei to stand down and surrender, if only for the sake of his unborn niece/nephew.
    • Brienne breaks down in tears pleading with Jaime not to go back to Cersei.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Davos talks about this briefly with Melisandre, commemorating her death and her service to the mysterious Lord of Light. He says that he doesn't forgive Melisandre for what she did, but he still regrets her passing and the loss of the last living connection to the only god that they knew existed.
  • Artistic License – Physics: Qyburn's new ballistae are more like 155mm field guns than anything remotely medieval. Blowing people through the air without direct contact, altering the momentum of entire ships without even slowing down or stopping as they over-penetrate both ends, creating holes several times the diameter of the bolts via sheer kinetic energy, and all this after being launched from beyond the horizon, far past the range at which a real life ballista bolt would've lost its energy and been unable to penetrate air. The power on display is, quite literally, physically impossible for the design shown (or really any design that doesn't involve gunpowder or electricity) — one physicist at Tor calculated their velocity at 2 kilometers per second, on par with a modern hypersonic depleted uranium armor-piercing fin-stabilized discarding sabot tank round — and about forty times the velocity of a real-world ballista.
  • Artistic License – Ships: The ballistae bolts sink a wooden ship. In reality, wooden ships were almost unsinkable — even after burning to cinder they tended to float, being wood — until the invention of explosive shells.
  • Automatic Crossbow: Bronn has the crossbow reloaded and aimed again in a few seconds. While Joffrey and Tyrion had both been depicted as struggling to reload it, Joffery had actually mentioned this feature way back in season 3; he just didn't really know what he was doing.
  • Babies Ever After: Sam and Gilly didn't really have much to do during their nights in Oldtown, and now she's expecting his child.
  • Badass Boast:
    • Cersei gives one to Euron about their plans for the future.
    Cersei: When the war is won, the lion will rule the land, the kraken shall rule the sea...and our child shall one day rule them all.
    • When Jaime goes to attack Bronn, the latter replies that Jaime couldn't take him on his best day, which is long behind him.
  • Because Destiny Says So: Varys points out that having stepped into a raging fire with three stone eggs and emerged unharmed with three live dragons, Dany is hardly going to put aside the belief that she's destined to rule the Seven Kingdoms.
  • Behind the Black: Even though Dany and the dragons are flying high in the air and should be perfectly capable of seeing Euron's ships from miles away, the ballistae shots fired at Rhaegal surprise them just as much as the audience.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted; Arya has a black eye from the head injury she got during the battle. So does Brienne.
  • Big Brother Instinct: After Bronn punches Tyrion in the face once he gets a little too lippy, Jaime immediately stands up to defend his little brother. It's only Bronn pointing a crossbow in Jaime's face and reminding him that he has long since passed his prime that makes Jaime back down.
  • Black Dude Dies First: Inverted. Missandei, the Black character in question, dies in the very last scene.
  • Black Knight:
    • Arya and the Hound are on the road together again, but this time both are riding black horses instead of the White Stallion that Arya was riding last time.
    • The Mountain is used to execute Missandei.
  • Blessed with Suck: Bran Stark, who due to his visions spends more time living in the past than looking forward to the future.
  • Bling of War: The ballistae mounted on the Silence and Euron's other ships seem to be quite elaborate, with silver Lannister lion iconography, detail on the firing arms making them resemble kraken tentacles, and blood red eyes (more than reminiscent of the Eye of Sauron) carved from precious stones set on them.
  • Bloody Horror: Rhaegal dies in a similar fashion as Viserion did in the previous season, only in an even more graphic manner due to being pierced by several other spears, one of them impaling him through the neck with blood raining all over the skies just before his corpse falls into the ocean.
  • Both Sides Have a Point:
    • While Sansa is completely right that their wounded and exhausted armies need time to recover, Dany is not wrong in wanting to move against Cersei as soon as possible, as every delay allows her to increase her defenses and thus make any assault on King's Landing more difficult. In the time it's taken her to aid the North, Euron's fleet and King's Landing have been outfitted with anti-dragon ballistae, not to mention the arrival of the Golden Company.
    • Dany doesn't want Jon to tell his sisters about his claim because she is worried Sansa will undermine her. Jon in turn points out that they're family, and he can't hide a secret from two people who he's sworn to protect. Dany's fears turn out to be justified, as Sansa breaks her oath to Jon and shares the secret with Tyrion. Arya keeps her word, if only because she doesn't particularly care who's on the throne as long as she gets her revenge on Cersei.
    • Varys is right that Daenerys is only getting more scary and unstable, and that Jon looks like a better choice of monarch. Tyrion is likewise right that Varys just keeps on abandoning one monarch for another, apparently always certain that the next one is going to be better. Also while Varys makes a point that being male would make Jon more appealing to the lords of Westeros, Tyrion is correct that being male is not a true qualification for a ruler, as Joffrey was a man and a terrible ruler.
  • Break Her Heart to Save Her:
    • This is one reason Arya turns down Gendry's marriage proposal; she loves him, but she can't be a lady for him. Also, she's going to settle her score with Cersei and probably die in the process. It's better for Gendry to move on with someone who can be a lady.
    • Jaime's departure from Winterfell — and Brienne — plays very much like this, with him furiously listing every awful thing he's ever done to a crying Brienne before he rides away. Whatever business he has in King's Landing, he clearly doesn't want Brienne to follow him and put herself at risk.
  • Breather Episode: It begins as one, focused on the good times that are had by all with the defeat of the Army of the Dead, along with planning for the last battle... And then Rhaegal is killed.
  • Bring Me My Brown Pants:
    Tormund: Which one of you cowards shit in my pants?
  • Broken Aesop: While Varys' sudden support of Jon as King of the Seven Kingdoms is grounded in his previous assertions that he only wants what's best for the Realm, him saying that a Reluctant Ruler would be the right King is a sharp departure from the man who castigated Robert for being disinterested in ruling and as Exhibit A as to why someone who doesn't want the throne is not inherently the person best suited to rule. Varys went from telling Tyrion in Season 5 that Westeros needed "A monarch who can intimidate the high lords and inspire the people" to, in this episode, using Daenerys' habit of doing just that as an argument against her.
  • Broken Pedestal: Varys all but states that this is his current viewpoint of Daenerys, as she is no longer living up to the type of leader that he was hoping that she would be. Ends up getting Played for Drama as, when Tyrion reveals Jon's true parentage to him, Varys immediately begins plotting to throw his lot in with Jon since he now considers him to be a more preferable alternative.
  • Call-Back:
    • In "Cripples, Bastards and Broken Things", Ned Stark told his daughter Arya that she would marry a high lord and rule his castle, only for Arya to reply, "That's not me", and return to her water dancing exercises. Here Arya rejects marrying Lord Gendry and becoming the Lady of Storms End with the same words, returning to her archery practise.
    • Tyrion plays the same drinking game he played with Shae in "Baelor".
    • Tyrion attempts to use Varys's, "Power resides where men believe it resides" line while held at bow point, but Bronn shuts him up before he can finish. Bronn in turn reminds Tyrion that he promised to double the price if Bronn was ever paid to kill him.
    • Keeping his Jerkass facade, the Hound makes a point of bringing up Sansa being "broken in rough". Unflinching, Sansa replies that Ramsey got what he deserved. They also discuss how the Hound asked her to escape Kings Landing with him.
    • Not the first time Tyrion has had to jump overboard to save himself and then it went dark like the episode ended, before we see that he did survive.
    • Jaime mentions among his sins shoving Bran off a tower ("Winter Is Coming"), murdering his cousin ("A Man Without Honor"), and threatening to slaughter the inhabitants of Riverrun ("No One").
    • Missandei, right before being killed by Gregor, yells "Dracarys" to Dany. She's telling Dany to ''burn them all''.
    • The dragon Meraxes was the most famous dragon ever to have been slain with a scorpion bolt through the eye, having been shot down at Dorne by a marksman serving House Uller during Aegon I's Dornish Wars. This resulted in the death of the dragon and the death/capture of Queen Rhaenys, and her possible survival might have been one of the reasons Aegon stopped his war campaigns at Dorne. In the books, the dragons are notoriously hard to kill, even through scorpion bolts, and are considered almost invulnerable when they're airborne. Whether there was use of scorpions of the size shown in the show is not known.
    • Once again, a Targaryen raises a bastard to become Lord Baratheon, which is how House Baratheon was founded in the first place when Aegon I's (alleged) bastard brother Orys defeated the Storm King Argilac Durrandon and married his daughter Argella, thus forming the House Baratheon of Storm's End. (Whether intended or not, this lends extra credence to Bronn's case.)
  • Catch-22 Dilemma: The main problem with deposing Cersei. Cersei has offered the citizens of King's Landing refuge in the Red Keep. Daenerys wants to siege the city and remove Cersei by force, but if she does so she'll have to slaughter thousands and will taint her legacy as a liberator, fomenting future revolt against her rule. On the other hand, there's no other way to get Cersei off the throne, because she's too irrational to ever surrender.
  • Character Death: Two deaths: Rhaegal as the second dragon to die after Viserion; later, Daenerys' handmaiden and best friend Missandei.
  • Commercial Break Cliffhanger: Tyrion sees a mast coming down on his head as the ship is torn apart by scorpion bolts. Next thing we see, he's dragging himself from the water unharmed.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: What tears apart the new regime after the Dawn. Being torn by loyalty, favor, and acclaim and old traditional grudges.
    • Jon is torn between his Stark family, the North and his sworn loyalty to the dragon queen. Dany expresses her concern to him about all of this undermining her effort to rule, especially in light of Jon's stronger claim. She also points out, should his parentage come to light, he may be pressed into claiming his birthright by others.
    • Tyrion experiences much internal struggle once he learns of Jon Snow's parentage. He has his doubts about Dany, he wants to believe in her, but he also knows as well as Varys that Jon offers a tempting alternative.
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: Downplayed for both men since they don't actively fight about it, but Jaime and Tormund both show some jealousy towards each other due to their mutual interest in Brienne. Tormund is clearly very jealous of the fact that she chooses Jaime instead of him, and Jaime later snarks to Brienne about Tormund's interest in her, causing her to outright lampshade how jealous he sounds.
  • Creator Cameo: The show’s creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss appear in the feast scenes as a pair of wildlings.
  • Cryptic Background Reference: Varys offhandedly mentions the new Prince of Dorne has sworn to the Targaryen cause, but doesn’t go into detail about who this new Prince exactly is, nor how he has laid claim to the title, especially since in the show House Nymeros Martell is extinguished both in trueborn heirs and bastards. From the books... 
  • Culture Clash: An obvious solution to Jon's parentage would be to marry him to Daenerys, but when Varys points out that Jon is Dany's aunt, Tyrion explains this isn't a problem for Targaryens. However, while Dany would be okay with avuncular incest due to it being a Targaryen practice, Varys responds that Jon grew up in Winterfell where avuncular incest is not a thing.
    Tyrion: He loves our queen. And she loves him. If we marry them, they could rule together.
    Varys: She's his aunt.
    Tyrion: That never stopped a Targaryen before.
    Varys: No, but Jon grew up in Winterfell. Is marrying your aunt common in the North?
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Euron's fleet crushes Daenerys's, on account of Daenerys's fleet being anchored and possessing no means of ship-to-ship combat. Euron's ballistae, meanwhile, pierce wooden hulls just as easily as dragon hide.
  • Decapitated Army: Bronn tells Tyrion and Jaime that he could knock off Daenerys and a few of her generals (Tyrion included) to make it more likely Cersei would win the war, but instead decides to extort a better offer out of Tyrion.
  • Declaration of Protection: The Hound tells Sansa that had she fled King's Landing with him, she would not have had to suffer through Littlefinger and Ramsay, implying that he would have personally protected her. Sansa appreciates the gesture and grabs his hand with affection, stating that had she not gone through that, she would have remained the ignorant "Little Bird" that she was at King's Landing.
  • Defiant to the End: Cersei offers Missandei some last words. Her response? "Dracarys!"
  • Dented Iron: Rhaegal is suffering from several serious wounds from his battle with the wight Viserion, including various holes in his wings that make it difficult for him to fly, which is the stated reason why Jon isn't riding him. Unfortunately, these wounds just make it easier for Euron to kill him with the ballista.
  • Depraved Dwarf: On hearing his brother had bedded Brienne, Tyrion demands lurid details. In fairness, as he points out, he hasn't been laid in years.
  • Did Not Get the Girl:
    • Tormund is reduced to sobbing when Brienne chooses Jaime over him. Luckily, a servant girl with the hots for Wildlings is willing to cheer him up.
    • Arya turns down Gendry's proposal, even though she cares for him, because she has no interest in becoming a Lady.
  • Didn't Think This Through:
    • Daenerys is so anxious to take the Iron Throne (as her power and accomplishments are being undermined in the North and she is fearful those loyal to Jon will press his claim) that she forces her subjects to carry out an advance to King's Landing with tired and diminished forces. Sansa urges Daenerys to wait until their forces are rested enough to take on another war, but Daenerys is adamant they march now, for fear her enemies will become stronger the longer they wait. This comes to roundly bite her in the butt, as her fleet is attacked by Euron Greyjoy, who kills her dragon Rhaegal, sinks several ships, and captures Missandei, who is later executed in front of her under Cersei's orders.
    • Daenerys raises Gendry to Lord Baratheon without taking into consideration that this gives him a claim to the Iron Throne, albeit one lesser than hers. However, this is glaring considering that Robert Baratheon didn't quite need a "claim" to sit in the Iron Throne, as his familial connection to the Targaryens was merely the technical justification for his crowning.From the books... 
  • Dirty Business: Varys' mentality in regards to keeping the people safe from a poor ruler. He doesn't have to enjoy it but he'll do what he feels is necessary to secure a more stable realm.
    Varys: I will act in their interest, no matter the personal cost.
  • The Dog Bites Back: Bronn gets sick of Jaime pushing him around and giving him menial tasks while never following through on his word, making it abundantly clear to Jaime that he doesn't need Jaime alive to get a reward and gives him a well deserved "The Reason You Suck" Speech.
  • Don't Make Me Destroy You: Implied Trope. Daenerys tries to dissuade Jon from revealing the truth about his birth because, among other things, she wants him to avoid putting himself in the position where she'd have to antagonize him, the person she truly loves.
  • Downer Beginning: The episode opens with the funeral for the characters who died last episode.
  • Downer Ending: Jon tells his adoptive sisters the truth about his parentage and despite swearing them to secrecy, Sansa tells Tyrion about Jon's true parentage. Tyrion then proceeded to tell Varys. This results in a budding internal turmoil in Daenerys' camp. Jaime ultimately backs down from his and Brienne's Relationship Upgrade to return to Cersei, feeling Brienne is too good for him. And finally, Rhaegal and Missandei are both killed.
  • Drowning My Sorrows:
    • Lampshaded by Tormund to Sandor after seeing Brienne walk away with Jaime. However a serving girl with a thing for Wildlings is entirely willing to offer Tormund Sex for Solace as well. Sandor rudely rejects another girls' offer and continues to drink.
    • As Varys notes, Tyrion starts knocking drinks back like there's no tomorrow once he finds out Jon's true parentage and the divided loyalties this will cause. It doesn't help that Tyrion himself doesn't seem to be sure if Daenerys is the best choice for Monarch anymore.
  • Dude, Where's My Reward?:
    • Bronn is out of patience for his years of Lannister service, and holds the two brothers at bow point if they don't agree to give him what he's owed. Tyrion promises him Highgarden to top Cersei's offer of Riverrun.
  • Due to the Dead: The episode opens with the dead from the battle being burned. Jon delivers a eulogy, quoting phrases associated with the Night's Watch. A handful of characters give a last look to some of their fallen comrades; Jon with Lyanna, Daenerys with Jorah, Sansa with Theon, Sam with Edd, and Arya with Beric.
  • Ear Ache: Ghost survived his charge into the wight ranks with the Dothraki, but lost part of his ear in the process.
  • Enemy Eats Your Lunch: While holding the Lannister brothers at crossbow-point, Bronn helps himself to their Dornish wine.
  • Evolving Credits: Parts of the clockwork model of Winterfell, especially the main hall, are broken.
  • "Facing the Bullets" One-Liner: Missandei gets one of these when Cersei snarkily asks if she has any last words. She does: "Dracarys."
  • Failed a Spot Check:
    • Zigzagged, as Tyrion fails to notice, unlike Jaime, that Bronn's carrying a loaded crossbow. This is particularly worrisome for Tyrion as the last time he saw said crossbow, he was using it on someone. Justified, as he is at that point horrifically drunk.
    • Dany somehow fails to spot Euron's entire fleet right out in the open, from a dragonback vantage point.
    • Varys says that Jon, being raised a Stark, would not be okay with incest. However, if one looks at a family tree, there are several uncle-niece marriages amongst the Starks some 100 years before the series, while Ned Stark’s parents Rickard and Lyarra were first cousins once removed.
  • Fair Weather Friend: Varys has cemented himself as this. When he learns the truth about Jon from Tyrion, he decides he is the better choice for ruler. Tyrion calls him out on this. “How many kings have you served? 5? 6? I’ve lost count.” note  Varys claims out his loyalty has always been to the realm, not its rulers, seemingly forgetting that he loyally served Aerys II "the Mad King" and didn't lift a finger against him.
  • Family Title: The Last of the Starks.
  • First Girl Wins: Played for Drama. Despite genuinely loving Brienne, Jaime is still pulled back to Cersei, for reasons left unclear. Brienne is left in tears.
  • Forgiven, but Not Forgotten: Jaime's valor in the battle earns him a stay of execution, but he remains in Winterfell as a 'guest' of Lady Sansa so there won't be any issues with the upcoming battle with Cersei. And although Jaime walks around the castle unharmed, he can't help noticing that a lot of the smallfolk are still giving him cold looks.
  • For Want of a Nail: Tyrion invokes this, pointing out the state of Westeros for the last twenty years is the result of Robert Baratheon being in love with a woman who didn't feel the same about him.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • During Jon's eulogy early in the episode, the scene cuts to Missandei after he says "people will never see the likes of their fallen loved ones again".
    • Tormund heads North of the Wall again saying that the Wildlings belong there, and Jon and Ghost belong there too.
  • Forgotten Fallen Friend: Zig-Zagged. The montage of major characters who died last episode prior to the OBB doesn't include Melisandre, but Davos mentions her In-Universe.
  • Freudian Excuse: Dany acknowledges that Sansa has one in terms of becoming an underhanded political operative who is out for her own independence. She believes that Jon is the only one Sansa will listen to.
  • Funny Background Event:
    • When it looks like Dany is going to punish Gendry for Robert's crimes, everyone in the dining hall worriedly looks at them except for the Hound, who continues to eat as if he has no cares in the world.
    • When Sansa chats with the Hound, Pod can be seen walking off with not one, but two women.
  • Getting Hot in Here: We all know what's going to happen when Jaime complains about how hot Brienne has the fire going, and needs help taking his leather jerkin off...
  • Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex: After the initially somber mood of the victory feast is lifted, a lot of the survivors end up finding some company by the end. Lampshaded by the Hound when Gendry wants to find Arya.
    The Hound: Of course it's about that you twat. Why shouldn't it be? The dead are dead, and you're not.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: When Missandei is decapitated, the camera cuts to a very distant shot just before she loses her head, removing any bloodshed. Downplayed by the fact that her severed head and decapitated body can be seen falling from the battlements of King's Landing, regardless, and both body and head (and bloodstain) are in the unfocused background when Tyrion turns to face Dany.
  • Has a Type: Bronn notes that Jaime has shacked up with another blonde who looks like him.
  • Hate at First Sight: During Jon and Sansa's argument, Jon calls out Sansa for not making any effort to try and find common ground with Daenerys, though at the moment she is too preoccupied with Jon's revelation to give Daenerys the benefit of the doubt. Tyrion makes a similar observation, which Sansa likewise just brushes off.
  • Have You Seen My God?
    Davos: Lord of Light. We play his game for him, we fight his war and win, and then he fucks off. No signs, no blessings.
  • Heir Club for Men: Varys unashamedly believes this. He feels that Jon being the male heir gives him an institutional, legal, and cultural advantage over Dany, and he's more ready to believe in him being right for the throne than Dany.note 
  • Hidden Disdain Reveal: Played with. Bronn and the Lannister boys reveal their opinion to each other. Bronn admits he never saw either of them as anything more than his "meal ticket", and Jaime actively calls the man who saved his life several times a "cutthroat" rather than a friend or a comrade. Tyrion appears to be the only one who seemed to have liked Bronn but even he's amazed at the level of anger and resentment that Bronn shows. However, Bronn doesn't kill them immediately like Cersei ordered, because he doesn't think she'll win and knows he can extort a better deal out of Tyrion.
  • History Repeats:
    • Once again, the sitting monarch on the Iron Throne rejects any peaceful end to the bloodshed by executing a prisoner. (This itself was a case of History Repeating, as Robert's Rebellion was fanned by very similar circumstances.)
    • The newly entitled Lord Gendry Baratheon gets his heart broken by a Stark girl, much like Robert. It turned out better than last time, though. Gendry took the rejection much, much better than his father did. For her part, Arya seems to genuinely love Gendry even if she doesn't want to live a lady's life, unlike Lyanna, who, regardless of what feelings she had for Robert (discussed in book , glossed over in show), ran away with Rhaegar.
    • Once again Cersei deceives another man into thinking that he is the father of her child. One wonders if Euron took notice of Tyrion mentioning her baby, even though Tyrion shouldn't know about it yet.
    • Varys is once again counselling restraint to a Targaryen monarch in the interests of protecting the people of King's Landing. He had formerly counselled Aerys II to reject Tywin's offer of peace, seeing it as a False Flag Operation which would lead to a violent sack of the city and a massacre of the ruling family. (As it happens, Varys was right.) The difference is there Aerys II was petitioned/besieged by the Lannisters, while now it's the Targaryens doing the besieging.
    • Arya Stark and Sandor Clegane are on the road together again, albeit with less bickering.
  • Hollywood Tactics: Daenerys approaches Dragonstone on dragonback at an altitude of only about 1500 feet, resulting in 50% of her aerial corps being destroyed by ballistae attacks. While Anti-Air emplacements are a relatively new development in Westeros — their first recorded use is seen in this episode, and, as noted above, the ballistas are way more powerful than anything she could have any reason to expect — Dany's lack of caution still does not speak well of her, especially since she has seen a similar contraption up close when she attacked the Lannister convoy in the seventh season.
  • Honest Advisor: Varys stresses his promise to Daenerys that he would always speak the honest truth to her before pointing out that her plan to attack Kings Landing will result in so many casualties that all her prospective subjects will already despise her before she ever sits on the Iron Throne.
  • Hope Spot: It looks for a moment like Tyrion has managed to reach Cersei through her love for her children, her long-established one redeeming feature. Then Cersei has Missandei killed, crushing all hope of a peaceful resolution.
  • Hourglass Plot: In Season 3, Gendry refused Arya’s offer to be his family because the social differences between a bastard blacksmith and a high-born lady meant her offer was impossible. Years later, after being legitimized and becoming her social equal, he asks her to marry him, but she refuses because she can’t be a lady for him.
  • Human Shield: Cersei offers the citizens safety in the Red Keep so Daenerys will have to kill them if she wants to take the city. Even if Daenerys is willing to do so, she'll poison her rule before she ever sits on the throne. However, Cersei pushes Daenerys to this end, not knowing that Daenerys would indeed retaliate out of sheer wrath.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Now that his big brother has shacked up with Brienne, Tyrion looks forward to making some tall jokes.
  • I Can Rule Alone: Tyrion and Varys discuss how Daenerys has run things for so long, she really wouldn't be comfortable sharing the Iron Throne with anyone, especially a man she was required to be subordinate to. It's noticable that Daenerys herself never mentions the marriage solution to Jon, even though she doesn't have the same issues with an incesteous marriage.
  • "I Can't Look!" Gesture: Grey Worm turns his head at the last second to avoid watching the Mountain behead Missandei.
  • I Die Free: Missandei's last word calls back to when Daenerys set her free.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Poor Jon is not taking the revelation of his true identity very well at all in this episode (for that matter, neither is anybody else). Thanks to this revelation, he can't feel comfortable being with the woman he loves, due to being related to her, and may now be caught in a battle for the Iron Throne against her, which he never wanted. When Tormund tells Jon that he would be happier Beyond the Wall, Jon actually agrees, but sadly notes that he can't abandon his people.
  • I Lied: Jon made Sansa and Arya swear not to tell his secret lineage to anyone. Sansa does this exactly to Tyrion the minute Jon leaves Winterfell.
  • Immediate Self-Contradiction: Dany asks Jon if he's drunk. He denies it, then does a Verbal Backspace on getting to his feet and finding it difficult to walk on them.
  • Idiot Ball:
    • Another instance is Daenerys forgetting about Euron and the Iron Fleet altogether, even after Jaime told everyone in Winterfell about how Cersei and Euron plotted to betray them. Euron has done enough damage to Daenerys's fleet and made enough of a fool of himself at the dragon pit that nobody should be able to forget him, let alone Daenerys. Made even worse by the fact that Tyrion explicitly mentions Euron's Iron Fleet right in front of Daenerys when talking about the makeup of Cersei's forces.
  • Implied Death Threat:
    • When Varys and Tyrion are discussing Jon, Tyrion asks Varys how exactly he intends to get Daenerys to back out of her claim. Varys gives him a long Meaningful Look which Tyrion is strained by, clearly aghast that Varys is willing to plot Dany's assassination if necessary.
    • Bronn also implies that if Jaime and Tyrion fail to make good on their promise to give him Highgarden, he will be back to kill them.
    • Played with. As with most of the instances where Tyrion brings up Cersei's children, Cersei takes his pleas as a threat instead of the olive branch that it is.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: The first three scorpion bolts that hit and kill Rhaegal seem inhuman in their accuracy, with the shots made from an extremely long distance with no clear line of sight. And this doesn't even begin to account for crosswinds, natural glare, target momentum, etc.
  • Internal Reveal:
    • Jon, with Bran backing him up, reveals to Sansa and Arya his true heritage, then Sansa reveals this information to Tyrion, who reveals this to Varys.
    • Tyrion tells everyone present that he knows that Cersei is with child. In the background, Euron can be seen sussing out how long its been since they have spoken.
  • Irony:
    • Gendry is legitimized by royal decree and made Lord of Storms End (and by default lord of all the Storm Lands) the first thing he does is propose to Arya because now he is of a high enough social rank to be considered a fitting match for a Lady of House Stark. While Arya does care for Gendry she refuses precisely because he is now a lord and she has rejected the life of being a proper lady, if Gendry had remained a bastard blacksmith in Winterfell he actually stood a better chance of her agreeing.
      • The reason Daenerys legitimises him is so that she will have an ally who will be eternally grateful and loyal to her, not the Starks or anyone else. His first act after being legitimised is to attempt to marry a Stark.
    • Cersei sneers, "So much for the Breaker of Chains". We then see Missandei is her prisoner, with her hands in shackles.
    • Tyrion hasn't quite grasped the fact that he, of all people, should not bring up the subject of her children to Cersei, as she considers him partly responsible for their deaths, despite how warped a logical stance that may be. As such, his sincere pleas are taken as a veiled threat towards her and her baby. Cersei may love her children but it has never stopped her from engaging in behaviour that openly endangers their lives.
  • It's Not You, It's Me: When she turns down Gendry's proposal, Arya tells him that he'll be a wonderful lord, but she's not a lady.
  • Jabba Table Manners: Sandor can be heard slurping his wine during the toast for Lord Gendry. Tormund also chugs down his drinking horn.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Jerk:
    • Cersei refuses to kill Tyrion when given an opportunity to do so and hears him out, uncharacteristically noble of her. Tyrion offers her and her child peace, and promises no bloodshed, as long as she abdicates the throne. For a moment, it seems like Cersei considers it. Then she kills Missandei, effectively dooming many of her own people to violence because she's that mad with power.
    • Bronn reveals himself to be one. Not only is he willing to kill Jaime and Tyrion for lordship of Riverrun but he actually seems like he wants to kill them, which calls into question whether or not he was actually Jaime and Tyrion's friend to begin with, or if he was truly Only in It for the Money. Tyrion promising him Highgarden gets him to back off, but Bronn makes it clear he's pretty fed up with getting strung along and if they mess him around again, he'll come back to kill them.
  • Jerkass Has a Point:
    • Jaime scoffs at the idea of Bronn being Lord of the Reach because of his background. Thing is, the Reach is the richest and most populous region of Westeros and their nobility are tied with the Vale for snobbishness. Bronn getting all that and keeping it is unlikely, as Littlefinger's life showed.
    • By the same token, Bronn has been getting stuffed around by the Lannisters for several seasons now — they keep promising him more and more and never paying up, in shameless defiance of their family words. He's never pretended to be anything other than a sellsword only out for himself and he wants what he feels he's owed, and when you consider how much he's done and how litle he has to show for it, it's hard to argue with him.
    • Varys will betray a monarch (or anyone for that matter) if it serves his goals. However, as he points out, the highborn seldom think much of the smallfolk caught in their game of thrones and the wrong ruler can get millions killed. Someone must serve in their interest and that sometimes means getting rid of the tyrants or serving the best option available, until someone better comes along.
    • Tyrion begs Cersei to surrender to save her child. However, having already caused the death of Daenerys' 'child' Rhaegal, she has no reason to think that the Dragon Queen will be merciful. Furthermore, like Daenerys and Sansa, Cersei has first hand experience of what it's like to be at the mercy of those more powerful, and like both women feels it's better to risk everything and go down fighting than be put in that position again.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: Daenerys tries to charge the Greyjoy fleet with Drogon after Rhaegal is killed, but thinks better of it at the last moment and veers off before she's too close to dodge their ballistas.
  • Last of His Kind: Drogon is now the last living dragon in the entire known world.From the books... 
  • The Last Title: The Last of the Starks.
  • Leave Me Alone!: Although a pretty serving girl is willing to sleep with him, the Hound rudely rejects her (she was being pushy, even though he said no) and grabs the flagon of wine instead. Seeing this, Sansa makes a point of going over to speak with Sandor, pointing out that the girl could have made him happy for a little while. Sandor says there's only one thing that would make him happy, but refuses to say what it is.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Invoked by Cersei. Daenerys reluctantly agrees to the plan to lay seige to King's Landing and starve the populace to undermine Cersei's reign. Cersei then executes Missandei, provoking Daenerys into attacking while her army is exhausted and Cersei's forces are at their strongest.
  • Manipulative Bastard:
    • In recognition of his valour, Daenerys makes Gendry a Baratheon and Lord of Storms End. This makes her look like a benevolent ruler with a desire for reconciliation, and ensures that a once rebel House is ruled by a man who is personally indebted to her.
    • Sansa breaks her oath not to tell anyone about Jon's true parentage. By telling Tyrion, she knows the information will take on a life of its own.
    • Cersei has Missandei executed, knowing it will provoke Daenerys into forgoing a siege in favour of an immediate attack when her troops are exhausted and her last dragon is vulnerable.
  • Mass "Oh, Crap!":
    • Everyone aboard the Targaryen flotilla when Rhaegal is shot out of the sky.
    • Also their reaction to Cersei ordering Missandei executed.
  • Meaningful Echo: Arya once more says, "That's not me" when referring to how she'll never be a Lady.
  • Meaningful Name: Rhaegal was killed over a body of water, just as Rhaegar was killed at the Trident. Rhaegal's death begins by being impaled in the chest and according to the books Robert killed Rhaegar by driving the spike of his hammer through Rhaegar's heart.
  • Misery Builds Character: Sansa seems to believe this. She tells Sandor that without all the hardships she's endured over the years, she would have remained a "little bird."
  • More Dakka: The obvious shortcomings with the scorpion seem to have been rectified by making them bigger, training the troops in their use, and building so many they are on every ship in Euron's fleet and King's Landing's outer wall has one mounted every 20 feet or so.
  • Mood Whiplash: The usual majestic and awe-inspiring scene of watching the dragons fly is horrifically broken when Rhaegal is punctured by a ballista and falls to his death after getting shot by a few more.
  • Mouth of Sauron: When the two Hands are sent out to negotiate, Tyrion tries to get Qyburn to help Cersei see reason, but he only repeats Cersei's unreasonable demands until Tyrion walks past him to speak directly to his sister, at incredible risk to himself.
  • Multi-Character Title: The title refers to four people; Sansa, Arya, Bran and Jon.
  • Mundane Utility: Bran used his complete access to all human knowledge to build himself a wheelchair.
  • The Needs of the Many: When Tyrion brings up Varys's lack of loyalty to any of the monarchs he's served, Varys reiterates his loyalty is to the realm. He even made this clear to Dany herself. In the event the dragon queen is willing to sacrifice tens of thousands of civilians to secure her throne, then their goals no longer align. If that means throwing his lot in with Jon Snow and removing her to save them from a despot, so be it.
    Varys: We don't know their names. But they're just as real as you or I. They deserve to live. They deserve to have food for their children. I will act in their interest, no matter the personal cost.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Jon feels he owes Arya and Sansa the truth of who he is and even though Dany tells him not to tell them, warning him Sansa will never keep this information secret, Jon really believes Sansa will keep it to herself. He gets both his sisters to swear it to secrecy but, in her next scene, Sansa spills the secret to Tyrion, who in turn spills this to Varys, which in turn teases conflicts between Jon and Dany's respective supporters while they're battling Cersei.
  • No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: Retroactively subverted. The first and only time the Lannisters deployed the ballista against Daenerys's dragons in Season 7, it seemed like they had built a grand total of one, then forgot about the weapon entirely. It turns out that Qyburn's engineers have refined the design and mass-produced them, having deployed them both on Euron's armada and the walls of King's Landing. Euron's Ironborn and the Lannister soldiers have likewise been trained in their use.
  • Not So Above It All:
    • The Lannister brothers finally get Brienne to unwind enough to join them in a drinking game. She also ends up in Jaime's bed as well, although that has more to do with their long-lasting, slow-burning UST than the liquornote .
    • On receiving the raven scroll about how things have gone south down South, Sansa indulges in some Evil Gloating to Cersei's brother about how disappointing it will be to miss out on her inevitable execution. This only provokes Jaime to head South himself.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: When Jaime declares that Highgarden will never belong to a cutthroat like Bronn, Bronn rightfully points out that pretty much all founders of the Great Houses of Westeros were cutthroats just like he is.From the books... 
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: Euron's portrayal in this show has swung across the pendulum, from buffoonish braggart to lethal seafaring menace. But this episode places him in the "lethal menace" category once and for all when Euron becomes one of only a handful of non-dragon-riders in history to slay a dragon. He also has the distinction of doing it without the advantage of a supernaturally enchanted weapon like the Night King.
  • Not So Stoic: Grey Worm turns his head at the last possible moment, so as not to watch Missandei's death, and looks completely distraught.
  • Off with His Head!: Cersei executes Missandei via decapitation.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome:
    • Yara has apparently reclaimed the Iron Islands in Daenerys’s name, cutting off Euron from his home ground.
    • Ghost managed to survive The Long Night despite being surrounded by wights, although he has several scars and lost most of his right ear.
    • Bronn snuck into Winterfell with a loaded crossbow without being spotted by any guards, despite the fact he's known as one of the highest ranking generals in the Lannister army. Even better, he managed to get out without being spotted after threatening Tyrion and Jaime's lives and forcing a ransom.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Tyrion's reaction to having to dodge multiple ballista bolts when Euron opens fire on Daenerys's fleet.
    • Also Jaime and Tyrion reacting to Bronn proving his threats to kill them are Not Hyperbole.
  • Open Secret: Discussed. Varys points out that if eight people already know about Jon's true heritage, then it's no longer a secret but information which people will eventually find out.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • Daenerys, after learning that Gendry is Robert Baratheon's bastard (offscreen), officially declares him as Lord Gendry Baratheon of Storm's End, despite the bad blood between her and the Baratheons. She recognizes Gendry's heroics in the Long Night battle and knows that he had no part in his father's crimes against her family. It is also a fairly transparent political stunt, but it's definitely a nice thing on her part. Notably, the entire time she never once calls Gendry a bastard or acknowledges his low station.
    • It's small and understated, and comes in the middle of her final refusal of Tyrion's offer to avoid bloodshed, but Cersei at least gives Missandei the chance to say a few final words rather than simply having her executed immediately to demonstrate her intransigence.
  • Playing the Heart Strings: A cello accompanies the mass funeral pyres at the beginning of the episode.
  • Plot Armor:
    • Euron's fleet hits three shots out of three fired at Rhaegal, but somehow misses some twenty shots or so afterwards when Dany is flying straight towards them on the bigger Drogon.
    • Tyrion gets a giant mast dropped right onto his face. He doesn't have a bump on his head to show for it even though it should have caved his head in.
  • Properly Paranoid: Daenerys is becoming more and more mistrustful of those within her inner circle, fearing that they will begin to turn against her should they learn the truth of Jon's lineage. Oh wait, Varys are planning exactly that, even if Jon isn't, and Tyrion's loyalty by the end of the episode is thrown into question.
  • Put on a Bus:
    • With the White Walkers gone, Tormund decides to take his people back home Beyond the Wall. Jon has him bring Ghost along so he can live out his remaining years in peace.
    • Sam and Gilly leave Winterfell to await the birth of their baby.
  • Pyrrhic Victory:
    • The Northern/Targaryen alliance may have won the war against the dead, but in doing so have halved their armies, their combined forces now roughly even with Cersei's. Futhermore, Cersei's forces are battle-ready, while theirs are still recovering and have to make the journey south. Despite these drawbacks, Daenerys insists on pressing ahead before Cersei consolidates her position any more than she already has.
    • Cersei is gambling on this trope — by offering safety to the citizens of King's Landing within the Red Keep, any attempt by Daenerys to storm it would result in the deaths of thousands and undermine her rule before she even reached the Iron Throne. This fact isn't lost on Daenerys and her court, though Cersei is trying really hard to goad Daenerys into doing it anyway.
  • Rank Up: Gendry Rivers is raised up by Queen Daenerys as Lord Gendry Baratheon of Storm's End.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Bronn gives one to Jaime and Tyrion when Jaime calls him a cutthroat. Bronn points out that their ancestors were cutthroats who became lords and later kings the same way he did now, and that their descendants are the ones with Delusions of Eloquence.
  • Redemption Rejection: After finally developing a life completely separate from Cersei, being embraced as a hero at Winterfell and finding love in a hero, Jaime ultimately decides that he is not a good person and Brienne deserves better; he leaves to return to King's Landing and Cersei, though his rationale is vague.
  • Relationship Upgrade: After many seasons of unresolved tension, Jaime and Brienne finally end up consummating their relationship. Sadly, Jaime decides to go back to Cersei (for reasons undisclosed in this episode), leaving Brienne heartbroken.
  • Revenge by Proxy: Implied Trope. It's apparent that Bronn is not only fed up with Jaime and Tyrion, but also with Cersei, which is implied to be the straw that broke the camel's back. All promises from them with absolutely no backing.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Subverted. Daenerys clearly intends to do this to Euron's fleet to avenge Rhaegal's death, but a volley of ballista bolts forces her and Drogon to break off their attack.
  • Ruling Couple: Tyrion suggests resolving the Targaryen succession conflict by marrying Jon/Aegon and Daenerys to each other to have them rule jointly, since such an idea was never a barrier to the Targaryens before, but Varys objects that A) Jon is very unlikely to be fine with marrying his aunt, and B) Daenerys will never accept anything other than sole rulership.note 
  • Running Gag:
    • Pod is still a Sex God, ending up with two serving girls!
    • The Imp gets imp-slapped. One has a feeling that Bronn has been wanting to do that for some time.
  • Sanity Slippage: Between the revelation that Jon has a greater claim to the Iron Throne and the deaths of Ser Jorah and Rhaegal, Varys believes that Daenerys is beginning to show signs that she may have inherited her father's madness. He also suspects that she's been left unmoored by nobody in the North taking her Rightful King Returns bit seriously (much less what he sees as her messiah complex).
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Bronn pulls this after extorting Highgarden from Tyrion and Jaime, though not before threatening that if they screw him over again, he'll be back.
    Bronn: No, my fighting days are done. But I've still got a few killing days left, do you hear me? I'll come find you when the war is done. Until then... don't die.
  • Screw Your Ultimatum!: During the parley both sides demand unconditional surrender, with neither side intending to do so. They're only meeting in the first place so they can claim afterwards that they made every attempt to seek a peaceful solution.
  • Series Continuity Error:
    • Gendry calls himself Rivers even though he's a Crownlands bastard (he should be Waters instead).
    • When Jaime is listing the reasons why he is not a good man, he mentions strangling his cousin. Alton was actually beaten to death, and the one Jaime strangled was Torrhen Karstark.
  • Ship Sinking: All over the place:
    • Brienne/Tormund is sunk by her sleeping with Jaime instead.
    • Arya turns down Gendry's proposal and leaves Winterfell shortly after.
  • Shipper on Deck:
    • Tyrion certainly seems to approve of Jaime's new relationship with Brienne. Bronn actually seems to as well, though he's much more snide about it since he came there to potentially kill Tyrion and Jaime.
    • Tyrion also once again suggests to Varys that Jon and Daenerys should marry, though this time, instead of the political motivation being to bring together the North and Dany's alliance, it's to solve the Succession Crisis between the two potential heirs.
  • Ship Tease: Downplayed; despite being seated at the High Table, Sansa makes a point of sitting down opposite the Hound and exchanging a few kind words with him, even holding his hand (and looking directly at his face, as he notes). However as she's a Proper Lady she doesn't drag him into a room for Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex like everyone else. She is also the only person Sandor doesn't snap at when she touches him - in fact he looks pleasantly surprised.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Tyrion gives a nonverbal one to Qyburn once he starts acting as a Smug Snake mouthpiece for Cersei by ignoring his boasts of the Golden Company renewing the crown's army and walking past Qyburn while he is still talking in order to confront Cersei herself.
  • "Shut Up" Kiss: When Jaime and Brienne are facing each other after taking off their shirts, Jaime makes a snarky remark, Brienne starts to retort, and he responds with this.
  • Slasher Smile: After Daenerys breaks off from attacking his fleet with Drogon, Euron gives one of these as he turns his eyes on her fleet and decides to have some fun.
  • Smug Snake: Qyburn very much comes across as one during his parley with Tyrion, snidely pointing out that Drogon is vulnerable, while Daenerys's army is too badly outnumbered and ravaged by its battle with the undead to have any chance at taking King's Landing.
  • So Happy Together: Grey Worm and Missandei have a moment together while on a ship where they hold hands and smile warmly to each other, and this right after surviving a near-apocalyptic battle. This is a red flag for inevitable bad times...
  • Stating the Simple Solution:
    • Dany begs Jon to simply not divulge his secret to anyone else, as Sam and Bran are loyal to Jon and will keep his secret if he asks. Unfortunately Jon feels honor bound to tell his sisters.
    • Tyrion again suggests they resolve the issue by marrying the two claimants, but Varys thinks that even if you ignore that she's his aunt, he's so submissive to her that it would only make her excesses worse.
    • Tyrion tells Sansa that she should be happy with the current situation because there's a good relationship between the monarch (Dany) and the Warden of the North (Jon), and since Jon will likely be spending most of his time in King's Landing, Sansa herself will really be in charge of the North.
  • Stealth Expert: Arya has nothing on Euron's fleet, which somehow goes undetected by Dany who has a bird's eye view of the sea on a clear day and is looking in the fleet's general direction when the first bolt hits Rhaegal.
  • Stuffed into the Fridge: Missandei is publicly beheaded by the Mountain, an act which fills Daenerys with rage and wanting to enact revenge upon Cersei at all costs, leading her to suggest a head-on assault on King's Landing even in spite of a potentially large number of civilian casualties.
  • Sudden Downer Ending: What appears to be a Breather Episode falls into shit real fast with the deaths of Rhaegal and Missandei.
  • Suddenly Suitable Suitor: Subverted. Gendry is over the moon when Dany legitimizes him, because it means he and Arya have equal status and he can legitimately marry her. Arya, though she loves him, turns him down by invoking a Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: if he is a lord, he needs to marry a lady, and she can't be one for him. Also, unknown to him, she's going to King's Landing on a Suicide Mission.
  • Sunk Cost Fallacy: Tyrion's shaky allegiance to Daenerys gets called out by both Sansa and Varys. Sansa accuses Tyrion of being more afraid of her than actually loyal, and when Varys starts listing the number of preferable traits Jon has to Dany now that he has a stronger claim to the throne, Tyrion can't offer a real counterargument other than that he had already pledged his loyalty to Daenerys, and at some point you have to stick with someone.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • The main theme of the episode. Yes, everyone put their petty political bickering aside to fight for the survival of the human race. It was very moving. Now the human race has been saved, and the petty political bickering immediately starts up again.
    • In the show's non-puristic fantasy setting, ballista technology has seen some major improvements since the War of Conquest, whereas dragons have not. Add this to the fact that Daenerys lacks all the extensive wisdom on the strategic usage of dragons in warfare that her Valyrian dragonlord ancestors definitely had, and it's no surprise she's down to Drogon now.
    • Daenerys tries to avenge Rhaegal by charging down on Euron's ship, planning to incinerate him. As his fleet prepares to fire another volley, she is forced to retreat.
    • Tyrion once again learns, at a terrible cost, that you can't negotiate in good faith with an insane narcissist.
  • Surprisingly Sudden Death: Rhaegal is struck from an off-screen Greyjoy ballista and falls dead in the ocean moments later after being hit with additional strikes.
  • Tempting Fate:
    • When Bronn threatens to punch Tyrion if he keeps talking, Tyrion tries his luck and even comments that he doesn't believe that Bronn will do it. Bronn does.
      Bronn: I've never hit a dwarf before, but say another word and I will belt you!
      Tyrion: You see, I don't believe you'd do that — [Bronn hits him in the face]
    • Moments afterwards, Jaime calls Bronn's threat to kill them a bluff. Bronn putting a crossbow bolt in the wall inches from his head proves otherwise.
    • Both Stark sisters make it clear to Jon Snow that they regard him as a true son of Ned Stark, not just their half-brother or bastard brother. Jon has to tell them that he's not.
  • Their First Time: Brienne loses her virginity to Jaime. Jaime, in turn, has sex with someone other than his twin sister for the first time in his life.
  • They Do: Brienne and Jaime finally act on their Unresolved Sexual Tension. Unfortunately for Brienne, Jaime still returns to Cersei, for reasons yet to be revealed.
  • Think Nothing of It: Arya is the hero of the hour for killing the Night King, but would rather practise her archery than join in the celebrations.
  • Think of the Children!: Tyrion argues this with Qyburn and Cersei, to no avail.
  • Time Skip: A brief one, eliding the travels of the Targaryen fleet from White Harbor to King's Landing.
  • Title Drop: In a scene with Sansa, Jon, and Bran, Arya says, "My family. The four of us. The last of the Starks."
  • Trauma Conga Line: Daenerys loses Jorah, Rhaegal and Missandei in swift succession.
  • Ungrateful Bastard:
    • Bronn calls out the Lannisters as this, going berserk at Jaime calling him a cutthroat. Considering that Bronn saved Jaime's life multiple times, it definitely is justified on his part.
      Bronn: You boys are a pair of gold-plated cunts, do you know that?!
      Tyrion: That's a bit rude.
      Bronn: Year after year I've shoveled Lannister shit, and what do I have to show?!
      Tyrion: You're a knight, thanks to me!
      Bronn: Thanks to me! And that title's worth as much as a blond hair from your brother's ballsack!
  • The Unreveal:
    • Played with. It's not revealed how Daenerys found out that Gendry is Robert Baratheon's bastard, as there's only so many people that know — Jon, Varys, Davos, recently Arya, and possibly the Hound. However, the fact that Gendry announced it out loud when he first met Jon at Dragonstone might have not helped his case.
    • After rejecting Sex for Solace the Hound says there's only one thing that will make him happy, but refuses to say what it is. However we see him heading for Kings Landing, so finally getting revenge on his brother is likely the reason. He gets joined by Arya Stark also on an unknown mission to Kings Landing, quite likely to kill Cersei who just happens to be guarded by an undead Mountain.
  • Unspoken Plan Guarantee: The war strategy is laid out on on the map in Winterfell, and goes wrong accordingly.
  • Villain Has a Point: Bronn is a cutthroat sellsword in the payroll of a despotic queen, but he makes a valid point about the nobility of Westeros in general: pretty much all of them rose to power by the sword or deception, especially the Lannisters' own ancestor Lann the Clever. Even afterwards, they continue to being more violent and destructive than he is; the only real difference why he is looked down on is because of his low birth. Furthermore, the Lannister family has been teasing him with a reward for years at this point without making good, in fact reneging on it at one point to push him into the Dorne mission. He has more than enough justification to be a little fed up at this point.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Invoked by Cersei, who lets the people take shelter in the Red Keep, not realising they are effectively hostages. This is probably the only reason she doesn't have her archers kill Tyrion, as killing an envoy is a breach of etiquette, whereas killing a hostage is acceptable practise.
  • Voodoo Shark: The infamous "Dany kind of forgot about the Iron Fleet" explanation, which manages to make the main characters look like idiots without actually answering any of the objections viewers had to Iron Fleet ambush. It might have worked at the start of the season, when the last time Dany had seen Euron was him apparently pulling a Screw This, I'm Outta Here! and ending his alliance with Cersei after finding out about the White Walkers, but by this point she should really have known via Jaime that Euron had been faking it.
  • Walk-In Chime-In: Bronn interrupts Jaime and Tyrion bonding over Jaime's new relationship with Brienne.
    Bronn: I knew you were fucking her! A pair of tall, blond toffs! Must be like looking in the mirror.
  • We Are Not Going Through That Again: When Bronn shows himself open to negotiation, Tyrion starts to talk about how useful a man who knows the current state of defenses of Kings Landing would be. Bronn cuts him off, having no intention of being a Lannister lackey in yet another war. He makes it clear the Lannister brothers are negotiating for their lives and nothing else.
  • We ARE Struggling Together: There was already tension beforehand, but after the Great War is finished, the Targaryen-Stark camp immediately becomes fraught with infighting, stoked by Sansa and Arya's distrust of outsiders and Jon's rival claim to the Iron Throne that trumps Daenerys', despite his repeated assurances that he's not interested in challenging hers. This is a massive handicap in their continuing fight against Cersei.
  • Wham Episode: Rhaegal and Missandei are killed by Euron and Cersei. Sansa, Arya, Tyrion and Varys learn Jon's true heritage.
  • Wham Line: Cersei to Missandei — "If you have any last words, now is the time."
  • Wham Shot: Rhaegal getting hit by a ballista bolt out of nowhere.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • Bronn is shown to be completely fed up with the Lannisters, having spent years in dutiful service with little reward to show for those because of his lower station, and because they've done nothing but lure him into service with promises that have gone unfulfilled. Even Cersei's promises to reward him for slaying her brothers mean jack shit to him at this point.
    • Tyrion gives Sansa a gentle rebuke over her ongoing spat with Daenerys; he agrees the two women don't have to like each other personally, but asserts that deliberately pissing off the woman about to become Queen won't do House Stark or the North any favours in the future.
    • Jon calls out Sansa for being ungrateful towards Daenerys, saying, "You understand we'd all be dead if not for her. We'd be corpses marching down to King's Landing." When Sansa responds that Arya is the one who killed the Night King, Jon points out Daenerys sacrificed her armies to defend Winterfell and Jon swore the North to her. Sansa acknowledges the deaths, but ignores Daenerys's contribution because she does not want Daenerys to be her queen.
  • Will Not Tell a Lie: Unlike his uncle Ned Stark, Jon is incapable of lying to his family. When Dany tells him not to tell the secret to anyone and swear Sam and Bran to secrecy, Jon nonetheless confides in Sansa and Arya, asking them to keep it a secret. Instead, Sansa tells Tyrion.
  • Xanatos Gambit: Cersei is positioning herself to either claim victory or poison Dany's win by using the people of King's Landing as a human shield. If Dany holds back, it will cost her troops and perhaps the war, the obvious ideal outcome for Cersei. But if Dany doesn't hold back and takes the Red Keep by force, thousands of civilians will die. In this event, Cersei will almost certainly be killed, but it will taint Queen Daenerys' reign forever. Dany will be seen as just another Targaryen despot and not The Breaker of Chains. The thought of this makes Cersei almost giddy.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are:
    • Tyrion pleads to Cersei that he knows she is not the monster that everyone else thinks she is, as he's seen her love for her children. Despite a Hope Spot showing that his words have hit home, Cersei shows her determination to win or die.
    • Brienne pleads with Jaime to stay, saying that he is better than his sister and can be a man of honor. Jaime lists various evil deeds he's done in Cersei's name and rides off without her.
  • You Talk Too Much!: Bronn smacks Tyrion in the nose to stop him talking. When he insists on talking anyway, Bronn gripes, "Only death will shut you up!"


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