Fire cannot kill a dragon. It is known.
It was also known before "Game of Thrones" Season 6, Episode 4, "Book of the Stranger" -- because Daenerys Targaryen 1) coolly dropped that fire line as she watched her non-dragon brother get his deadly golden crown the last time she was in Vaes Dothrak, then 2) emerged naked from a massive fire that birthed her real dragons in the Season 1 finale.
But this week wasn't big on massive revelations, it was more into making revenge plans and moving chess pieces forward so they can play out to even more awesomeness later.
"Book of the Stranger" got its name from that squirrely scamp the High Sparrow's conversation with Margaery Tyrell about The Stranger and sinners. Despite the firebomb of an ending, it was more of an emotional episode -- for the touching reunion of Jon Snow and Sansa Stark, and for the HUGE loss of that sharp, deadpan, one-liner queen Osha. If we needed more proof that Ramsay Bolton is much a bigger threat than Joffrey and Theon 1.0, we got it this week when he played her when she was trying to play him. RIP, wildling badass.
— Patrick (@PatrickJD84) May 16, 2016
As it turns out, Jon Snow did not leave Castle Black after last week's mic drop. Instead, he connected with his half-sister (OR IS SHE) Sansa and her backup dancers, Brienne and Pod, and now they're ready to build an army to save Rickon Stark and take downRamsay.
— Jon Snow (@LordSnow) May 16, 2016
Sad Theonalso reunited with his sister Yara Greyjoy,and Margaery Tyrell reunited with her sad brother Loras. All the bros got whiny this week -- it was a much better hour for the ladies than the gents, even if Sansa should be pushing HERSELF as the new ruler of the North instead of Jon.
'Cause who run the world? Girls.
The GoT girls were on fire this week -- Cersei, Yara, Margaery, Sansa, Brienne, Olenna, Osha, Missandei -- but the baddest girl of them all is still our queen DTarg. She is a true dragon, and we just got another reminder. Perhaps this is a preview of what's to come against Meereen and The Wall? Khal
— Mike T (@majtague) May 16, 2016
Why did we go through all of this with the Dothraki? Again? Probably because of Dany's Qarth prophecy: "To go north, you must journey south. To reach the west, you must go east. To go forward you must go back, and to touch the light you must pass beneath the shadow." She had to go back to go forward, probably so she could pick up that army of Dothraki. And maybe her future includes Asshai and the house with the red door she remembers from childhood.
But Tyrion Lannister could use some help in Meereen right now, so it might be a good time to hurry over there. However, even if Dany and her dragons + the Dothraki retake Meereen, it's clear that the masters are just going to turn the slave cities back into the slave cities the second Dany isn't around. How can Mhysa leave for Westeros when she knows her breaking of chains will only last until she's gone?
Read on for a recap of Episode 4:
THE MAP: This week, we're shown King's Landing, The Eyrie, Winterfell, The Wall, Vaes Dothrak, and Meereen.
STARK REUNION: SANSA + JON = THE FEELS
Edd has Jon's sword at the start of the episode. He asks Jon (new hairdo already) where he's going to go. "South." What will he do? "Get warm." Cheeky. In theory, he could visit Sam. Edd says he was with him at Hardhome, how can Jon leave them now, knowing what's coming? Jon did what he could and it failed. Does Edd want him to stay after that? On that note, the horn blows 'cause they have visitors. It's Sansa, Brienne, and Pod. They made good time. It's not like The Wall is down the street from Winterfell. Jon sees Sansa. Soooo much has happened since they last saw each other in Season 1. They hug and it's beautiful.
— Alicia OckerThompson (@AliciaOcker) May 16, 2016
SNIFF. If only Lady were here. They chat about Old Nan's old kidney pies. "We never should've left Winterfell." They wish they could go back to the day they left. Just rewatch the pilot. Sansa regrets how much of an arse she was to Jon. (Catelyn Stark was the worst, though, do you recall how awful she was to Jon?) Jon says there's nothing to forgive but he forgives Sansa.
Sansa asks where will Jon go. Jon: "Where will WE go?" They are together now. TEARS. Sansa is the one who brings up the Ramsay/Winterfell idea. She is the one who comes up with the plan to rally support. She wants to fight for their home, but he's tired of fighting. That's all he's done. "I hanged a boy, younger than Bran. ... I fought. And I lost." Sansa says if they don't take back the North they'll never be safe. She wants his help, but she'll do it herself if she has to. (YAS!)
Davos asks Melisandre what she'll do next, and she says she'll do what Jon commands. "He's the prince that was promised." Davos brings up that she said that about Stannis too and she walks off. Davos is JUST now asking what happened to Stannis and Shireen. Awkwardly enough, Brienne shows up to weigh in. She knows Mel was involved in Renly's death. She hasn't forgotten or forgiven. Brienne admits she executed Stannis.
Toward the end of the episode we return to Castle Black for a tense meal with the new crew, plus Tormund. (Tormund + Brienne = Should it happen? Are we 'shipping them?)
— Emmanuel Varela (@CocoVarela) May 16, 2016
A letter comes in for the Lord Commander, who is not Jon anymore but it's from Ramsay to the traitor bastard Jon Snow. Ramsay says they have Rickon in the dungeon. He's baiting Jon to come get him. "I want my bride back. Send her to me, bastard." This is exactly like the book, except the "bride" was fake Arya, not real Sansa. So this is what motivates Jon to go -- threats of rape to Sansa, and dogs devouring them -- despite Jon's reluctance to fight. Sansa says Ramsay has about 5,000 men. The wildlings have about 2,000. They'll need more. Sansa tells Jon "You're the son of the last true Warden of the North," she says people of the North will rally behind him. What about HER? She's the trueborn one, if these things matter. She's sister of the last King in the North.
Littlefinger makes his first appearance in Season 6, surprising "the defender of the Vale" (aka Robin Arryn) with a falcon gift. Littlefinger lies to Yohn Royce immediately about the Ramsay marriage, suggesting Royce shared his travel plans and the Boltons attacked. Royce calls him out, but Baelish says he only cares what the Lord of the Vale thinks, and since Littlefinger has already won over Robin, and brought him a gift, it's clear it doesn't matter how much Littlefinger lies. Poor Yohn Royce. Robin wants to help Sansa against the Boltons. Sansa needs to chop off Littlefinger's littlefinger since this was all his idea.
Tyrion says his recent experience with slavery gives him perspective, but Missandei points out that he wasn't a slave long enough to understand. Tyrion meets with the masters/slavers and they obviously want Tyrion and the dragons and everyone to go. Missandei keeps speaking up, which is awesome, and Grey Worm as well. The masters say Grey Worm isn't free, he's just following a new master in Dany. Tyrion says the masters don't need slaves to make money. He grew up in Westeros and he grew up richer than anyone. But he knows you can't remove slavery without replacing it with a new system. Instead of abolishing slavery overnight, Tyrion said, he will give them seven years to end the practice. (!) Missandei looks shocked, especially since Tyrion is making this seem like the queen's offer, and Dany would never compromise to that extent. In exchange, Tyrion said, the masters have to cut off their support for the Sons of the Harpy. As a parting gift for the guests, he brings in prostitutes. Classic Tyrion.
After that meeting, Tyrion meets with the former slaves. They can't believe he just met with the slavers. This meeting is even more tense. They don't know or trust Tyrion. They know Grey Worm. Grey Worm and Missandei seem unsure how to react. Grey Worm says he's not a politician, but he wants peace. Missandei says she will never trust the slavers, "but as a wise man once said, 'we make peace with our enemies, not our friends.'" So they show support to Tyrion, at least in that moment. But when it's over they confront Tyrion. Seven years is too long for a slave. Grey Worm says they can't trust the slavers. "We are not human in their eyes." They look at Grey Worm and see a weapon; they look at Missandei and see a whore. They will use Tyrion, that's what they do. They're probably right. Tyrion may be too focused on treating Meereen like Westeros.
JORAH + DAARIO
Daario can't stop talking sh-t about how Dany had sex with him, and not Jorah. Just shut up and look for Dany. Jorah knows Dany will be at Vaes Dothrak, in the Temple of the Dosh Khaleen. He knows all about the Dothraki. He also knows you're not allowed to have weapons in the city, so he and Daario leave their swords in the desert. They plan to go in at night. Jorah exposes his greyscale to Daario, but doesn't touch him. Jorah can't touch anyone ever again. Sad face. Can they find whoever helped Shireen, or is it too late?
As usual with the Dothraki, there's a lot of f--king around the camp, when they come in at night. Jorah tells one guy he's a wine seller, but the guy doesn't buy it. Jorah and Daario get split up and do their own individual fighting. Jorah gets in trouble, but Daario saves him at the last minute with a knife wound. He was too attached to that knife to leave it behind, and Jorah knows if they find a stab wound the whole city will be looking for them.
DANY + THE DOTHRAKI
Dany must be so bored and frustrated. The head crone shares stories from another former khaleesi. She reiterates that Dany's best case scenario is to be one of them. The other options are less pleasant. One poor girl was only 16 when her khal died, and she and Dany bond outside the temple. Daario and Jorah show up and almost kill the girl, but Dany wins her over instead. She has a plan for what to do.
At the end of the episode, we revisit the Dothraki guys who get to decide Dany's fate. They don't care what she thinks or wants. "You have no voice here, unless you are Dosh Khaleen" and they get decide if she is. She gives a speech about how this is where Khal Drogo was when he swore to her before the Mother of Mountains to get revenge for her. She tells them off. "You are small men. None of you are fit to lead the Dothraki. But I am. So I will." YAS, QUEEN. They laugh and say they'll take turns f--king her, then give their horses a turn. "You crazy c-nt. Did you really think we would serve you?" She puts her hand next to a pillar of fire. "You're not going to serve. You're going to die." (No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to die.) She knocks over the fire, setting the place ablaze. As everything burns behind her, she emerges naked, once again. And, once again, her remaining khalasar bows to her. New army alert!
KING'S LANDING: MARGAERY
Margaery has not had the best storyline this season, but she finally gets to exit her cell, and kneel before the High Sparrow. He says, if he were to let her leave right now, where would she go and what would she seek out? She'd go to her brother, her husband, her family. The High Sparrow said, for her, that means seeking out money and power. Seeking out sin. He used to be the same way. He tells the story of his father, a cobbler, and making his own money. They end up talking about The Stranger and the Seven-Pointed Star. He ended up buying wine and women with the money he made. "I woke before dawn, could barely stand. Everyone else was asleep on the couches or the floor, lying in heaps next to their fine clothes, the truth of their bodies laid bare. I could smell them, the incense and the perfume, and the fine foods that had already started to turn. And I saw it with perfect clarity. I saw what my sins were. ... It was a part of a story. A story I was telling myself about who I was. A collection of lies that would disappear in the light." The people he was trying to get away from, the beggars, the poor, were closer to the truth. He walked out the door, without even taking his shoes, and never went back.
The High Sparrow takes Margaery's hand and leads her to her brother, Ser Loras. She speaks with him alone and tries to get him to snap out of it. He is the future of their house. He cries, and says he doesn't care about the family, he just wants it to stop. She doesn't want to give in and let them win.
KING'S LANDING: CERSEI
Cersei interrupts Pycelle's speech to King Tommen. Tommen tells Cersei they can't antagonize the High Sparrow, since he has Margaery. Tommen finally realizes Cersei doesn't quite like Margaery, but Cersei says it doesn't matter. Queens should command respect and the High Sparrow has no respect for their world, he wants to knock it down. Tommen tells Cersei he spoke to the High Sparrow, and the Sparrow told him something.
Once again, Jaime and Cersei interrupt a Small Council meeting with Olenna Tyrell and Kevan Lannister. Cersei said the High Sparrow knew they would end up bickering with each other instead of seizing power back. Cersei said Margaery is supposed to do a walk of atonement, but Olenna said that cannot happen. Cersei said she agrees. Jaime tells Kevan the plan of bringing an army in to free Margaery and either abduct or kill the High Sparrow. Kevan said if it doesn't work, there will be a civil war and many will die. Olenna said many will die anyway; better them than us.
Theon returns to Pyke and, once again, has the coldest of welcomes home. He tells Yara he escaped Winterfell. He can't even look at her. "Men died trying to rescue you. Good men. My men." Theon apologizes. "You were my brother. You were a spoiled little c-nt" but she risked everything to save him. Theon said Ramsay broke him into pieces, and she knew -- Ramsay sent her one of those pieces, and that's why she came for him. She thinks he came home in time for the Kingsmoot, to be king, but he doesn't want that. He tells her, "You should rule the Iron Islands. Let me help you." That's what she wanted to hear, so she's good with it.
Ramsay, peeling an apple, brings in Osha. Does he eat people after flaying them? No. "Then I've seen worse." LOVE her. She seems to be playing double agent, pretending she doesn't care about the Starks. He says he has Rickon now, so what use is Osha to him? She can give him what he wants, the same thing all men want. She's a good talker, he says, and he likes that. She's a better talker than Theon. But they all talk in the end. Theon told him the truth. He knows about the Stark boys and who helped them escape. So he NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! He stabbed Osha. Damn it all. She's gone.
— Game of Thrones Meme (@Thrones_Memes) May 15, 2016
Episode 5, which airs May 22, is called "The Door" and it has this synopsis: "Tyrion seeks a strange ally. Bran (Isaac Hempstead Wright) learns a great deal. Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) goes on a mission. Arya (Maisie Williams) is given a chance to prove herself." Do you think this is the week Bran learns about Jon's past, or just the White Walkers? What is the door? Dany's memory of a house with a red door? The preview (watch below) shows Sansa confronting Littlefinger, a red priestess in Meereen, Arya back in action, Bran maybe being gone for too long, and the Kingsmoot.
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