Episode 2 could have been called “The Women of Winterfell.” Let’s break down the girl power we witnessed this week.
Arya taking charge of her destiny
We could see the set-up for Arya and Gendry’s relationship in episode 1, but I never expected things to move that fast. Arguably the most shocking scene so far this season, this is the first item I want to discuss.
Arya boldly decides that she’s going to spend her final hours getting some. You go girl. She had her eye on Gendry and early in the episode she showed him her knife skills and said, hey, get on that weapon I asked you to make me.
When he brings it to her later that night, she starts quizzing him about the Red Woman, and how many girls he’s been with. Gendry is adorably caught off guard, but knows there’s no pretending he’s some kinda player. He might be a bit afraid of Arya.
She kisses him passionately and they start ripping off their clothes. At the end of the episode, we see them in bed, Gendry asleep and Arya staring off, looking worried.
Some people took Arya’s look as one of regret or dissatisfaction. Some thought it was out of character for her to do this. I think it was totally in character. She’s all about living life on her terms.
And the look on her face after? I doubt she’s analyzing Gendry’s sexual prowess.
I’m pretty sure she’s just thinking about how they’re all about to die. And how she’s gonna kick some White Walker ass with her new weapon. I’m so ready to see Arya throw down next week.
Arya and Gendry's relationship gonna be WILD when she starts swapping faces pic.twitter.com/LhyBRC7adW— mose (@mosebergmann) April 22, 2019
Sansa stands her ground with Dany
Sansa and Daenerys have a moment… almost. Dany (after being advised by Jorah) goes to see Sansa and tells her they have so much in common, so why are they at odds?
I liked seeing these two powerful women talking in a room together. It’s exactly what Daenerys should have done. But I think her peace offering came off just a little bit fake.
They both said all the right things. Sansa warmed up slightly after Dany pointed out that she’s been focused on reclaiming the Iron Throne for her whole life, but here she is helping the North. Because she loves Jon.
But also because she must realize she’d have to fight the Army of the Dead eventually, right?
But just when Dany thinks she’s getting somewhere with Sansa, Sansa looks her dead in the eye and asks what happens after Dany takes the Iron Throne.
“What about the North?” she says, dropping all pretenses of friendliness. They’ve come too far to let themselves fall under another tyrant. Sansa wants to make it crystal clear that she is not ok being ruled by Dany.
Dany pulls back, her smile falls, and they are interrupted before the conversation can continue. Theon has come to see them.
This scene is critical because you can see Dany’s reaction to Theon coming to Winterfell and volunteering to fight… for Sansa. Dany is starting to realize the loyalty the Notherners have for the Starks and Winterfell.
Brienne, a Knight of the Seven Kingdoms #goals
In the beginning of the episode, we see Jaime on trial in front of Sansa, Dany and Jon. Dany appears calm, with her anger just below the surface, as she tells Jaime of the “bedtime stories” her crazy-ass brother would tell her about the man who killed her father. Sansa chimes in that Jaime can’t be trusted.
Jaime is not apologetic. He tells them he’d do it all again to protect his House and his family. Then Bran delivers the best line of the episode: “The things we do for love.” Recall that Jaime used these words right before he pushed Bran out of the tower years ago.
Seeing how this isn’t going so well for Jaime, Brienne steps forward and vouches for his character. This is enough to convince Sansa. Jon says they need every man they can get, and Dany allows it.
Later, Tyrion, Jaime, Brienne, Podrick, Davos and Tormund are gathered in a room around the fire. They’re getting warm, drinking wine, and pondering what might be their last night alive.
Tyrion calls Brienne “Ser Brienne,” and backtracks with “Lady Brienne.” Then it goes something like this:
Tormund: “You’re not a knight?”
Brienne: “Women can’t be knights.”
Tormund: “Why not?”
Tormund: “If I were a king, I’d knight you ten times over.”
Jaime: “Actually, you don’t need a king. Any knight can make another knight. I’ll prove it. Kneel.”
Brienne is hesitant, but she kneels before him. Jaime knights Brienne and it was perfection. Possibly one of the best scenes ever in Game of Thrones. Her face (amazing acting from Gwendolyn!) perfectly portrayed her emotions. I could feel her taking on the sanctity and seriousness of the moment, then the pride, satisfaction, and joy she felt. I loved it!
Meanwhile, in Winterfell…
So what else happened this episode? We are clearly being set up for a lot of deaths. They’ve spent two episodes wrapping up loose ends and giving us all the warm, fuzzies. We also had some questions answered.
- Jaime asks Bran why he didn’t tell everyone that he pushed him from the tower. Bran explains that if Jaime were executed for his crimes, he wouldn’t be there to fight. So perhaps Jaime is important in the battle? Remember, Bran knows ALL. And when Jaime asks, “What about afterwards?” Bran replies, “How do you know there will be an afterwards?” Uh-oh.
- Speaking of Bran, he pipes up at the strategy meeting to let everyone know that the Night King will be coming for him. “He’s tried many times with many three-eyed ravens,” Bran explains cryptically. So they create a plan to use Bran as bait, with Theon and the Ironborn to protect him. I’m not feeling very confident about that plan.
- “The big woman still here?”
- Gilly & Davos are acting as the official “Battle of Winterfell” tour guides. Women and children in the crypts, men get armored up.
- They keep talking about being “safe” in the crypts. Some fans think the White Walkers are going to bring all the dead in the crypt back to “life.” It would be super messed up to see Ned, Lyanna, Catelyn, etc as wights. I don’t think this will happen, but I do think something might go down in the crypts.
- Tormund tells a great story about how he killed a giant, then climbed into bed with his wife, who thought he was a baby and suckled him for 3 months. That’s how he got so strong. The faces of everyone in the room are hilarious – they’re all like WTF with this guy?
- Sam gives Jorah his Dad’s sword, Heartsbane. Jorah’s gonna die.
- Anyone get a weird vibe on that look between Theon & Sansa? Please, don’t go there. Just no.
- Jon effectively avoids Dany for most of the episode, but finds the right time to tell her he’s Aegon Targaryen just before the horns sound and the Army of the Dead’s attack is imminent. Jon seems sad to tell her. Is it because he’s not OK with boning his aunt? Dany seems distressed, but also… threatened? She’s much more concerned about his claim to the throne than them being related. (And we know this isn’t an issue for Targaryens.)
- Winterfell is in full-on battle mode. They are PREPPED. But will it be enough?
- Best quotes and tweets from episode two, A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms.
Last week, I correctly predicted that Bran would not care at all about what Jaime did to him years ago because he is no longer “Bran.” I also thought maybe Sam would tell Sansa about Jon’s identity – I was wrong about that.
I think the Battle of Winterfell next week will be amazing and epic and beautiful and sad. We know it will be the longest consecutive battle sequence in cinema and television history. And we all know how amazing the Battle of the Bastards was, so I have high hopes. BUT…
I think this won’t be the core conflict of the season. I believe, as many fans do, that they’ll defeat the Night King and the tougher conflict will be what happens after. Will it be Dany or Jon who rules? Or both? Will they defeat Cersei?
I predict Arya will kill the Night King. I have a friend who thinks Bran will somehow call on the “Children of Forest” for help – I really like that theory!
We know that Dany has been hyper-focused on getting the Throne back for her family. So should she be upset about Jon’s lineage? After all, he IS her family. So even if he wanted the throne, should she really be that upset?
My final prediction for the Iron Throne? I think Dany will sit on the throne. Jon will be by her side, but he doesn’t want to be king. And Sansa will be Queen in the North.