GAME OF THRONES S6EP10 RECAP: THE WINDS OF WINTER

Paul Mendoza

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Dare I call this Season Finale‘explosive’? So much happened in this episode I’m still trying to process it. I even watched it twice last night and it’s still overwhelming. Season Six has certainly been a season of giving the fans what they want; Jon Snow’s resurrection, Dany’s victory over the Dothrakis, Arya offing The Waif and leaving the House of Black and White, the Battle of The Bastards and Sansa coming into her own and getting her revenge on Ramsey Bolton. Revenge has been a big part of this season and its tenth and final episode is loaded with it. Many more died than I or anyone else predicted. I am in mourning for one of those lost.

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As for the others, it was just their time.

Kings Landing

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The episode begins with an incredible sequence. We all suspected that Cersei’s plan was to use the wildfire that The Mad King had placed beneath the city to destroy her enemies gathered at The Sept of Baelor but not how she would pull it off. Apparently, ‘little birds’ can be quite treacherous. It played like the end of a Godfather film. “Michael Corleone, do you reject Satan?” Michael says he does but kills all his enemies anyway. Cersei doesn’t even use that pretense. She has a new outfit made for the occasion. Let’s call it her ‘Evil Queen’ battle dress. She sips wine as she looks out her window in The Red Keep, The Sept of Baelor in plain view. She has The Mountain prevent Tommen from going to the trial. She has Qyburn lead Maester Pycelle into a small room where his little birds draw big knives and mercilessly stab him to death. How many sweets did he need to give them for this dirty deed? At least Pycelle had one last spin in the sheets before he died.

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Loras confesses to everything and gives over his life to the Faith of The Seven. They carve the mark of The Seven into his forehead. Margaery is upset about this but The High Sparrow assures her that once Cersei’s trial is over that Loras will be free to go. Margaery knows something’s wrong when Cersei and Tommen fail to appear. She urges everyone to leave but those idiot Faith Militant won’t allow it. Lancel follows another ‘little bird’ into the catacombs and is stabbed in the leg. He is powerless to stop what is coming. The whole place goes up in green smoke! I mean everyone in the Sept is vaporized! That means sweet, beautiful Margaery is gone. She is the loss I mourn. I mean, come on! Why? Bloody hell!

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Poor Tommen can only watch from The Red Keep as his beloved is killed and everyone else, The High Sparrow, Lancel, the Faith Militant, Margaery and Loras, Mace Tyrell, Kevan Lannister, and assorted towns folk. What is left to do but remove his crown and jump out the window?

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When Qyburn presents his body to Cersei she doesn’t shed a tear.
“He belongs with my father and his brother and sister. Burn him and spread his ashes where the Sept once stood.” Cold as ice. All the humanity is gone from her. If you needed more proof you just needed the scene with Sept Unella to confirm it. She has her tied up and water boards her with wine (‘wine boarded?) asking her to ‘confess’. Cersei than gives her confession.

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“Confess, it felt good,” she begins, “Beating me, starving me, frightening me, humiliating me. You didn’t do it because you cared about my atonement; you did it because it felt good. I understand. I do things because they feel good. I drink because it feels good. I killed my husband because it felt good to be rid of him. I fucked my brother, because it feels good to feel him inside of me. I lie about fucking my brother, because it feels good to keep our son safe from hateful hypocrites. I killed your High Sparrow, and all his little sparrows, all his septons and all his septas, all his filthy soldiers because it felt good to watch them burn. It felt good to imagine their shock and their pain. No thought has ever given me greater joy. Even confessing feels good under the right circumstances.”

Sept Unella thinks she is going to die quickly but Cersei assures her she won’t die ‘for quite some time’. Then The Mountain enters the room and removes his helmet. I imagined worse, sort of like when Darth Vader removed his helmet in Return Of The Jedi. “This is your god now”, Cersei tells her and then leaves the two of them alone. And as Sept Unella screams, Cersei keeps saying “Shame. Shame. Shame”, closed the door and shuts the window. Damn.

The Twins

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Meanwhile, Walder Frey couldn’t be happier! Jamie has taken River Run and it is back in Frey’s hands. So they are having a feast which just reminded me of the last feast we saw at The Twins. Walder Frey even makes a toast in remembrance of that fateful feast, “The Lannisters and The Freys send their regards!” Bastard!!! Jamie loathes this guy, too. While Bronn goes off with two lovely ladies Jamie chats with Walder Frey and basically says ‘why do we need you if you have to call us every time you need something done?’

I was hoping Jamie would off the old man but someone much better is given the honor.
Later on when he is alone, a lovely maid is serving him his meal. He wonders where his sons are and the young lady tells him that they are here. What do you think is this meat pie I just served you! Then before you can say ‘Sweeny Todd’ the young woman peels off her face and reveals herself to be Arya Stark!

“My name is Arya Stark,” she calmly says. “I want you to know that. The last thing you’re ever going to see is a Stark smiling down at you as you die.”

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Then she pulls a Sweeny Todd and slices his throat. She smirks at him while he bleeds out. How did she get back to Westeros so fast? Who cares? She did what needed to be done and she got to scratch a name off of her list.

The Citadel

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Sam and Gilly arrive at The Citadel. Gilly looks lovelier and lovelier all the time. There seems to be some confusion at the front desk. They still show Joer Mormont as Lord Commander but while they sort it out Sam may have access to the library. It is a massive, impressive place. Sam is beside himself with joy at all the knowledge at his fingertips. Poor Gilly had to wait outside though. I’m Dany will change the rules once she is sitting on The Iron Throne, right?
Westeros

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Davos confronts Melisandre in front of Jon. He tosses her the wooden stag he made for Shireen and forces her to confess that they burned her at the stake. “I loved that girl as if she was my own!”, Davos tells her and it broke my heart as well. Melisandre defends herself and tells them that Stannis and his wife also agreed to the poor girls’ sacrifice to The Lord of Light. It did no good of course, they all died anyway. Davos requests permission to execute her but Jon only banished her and tells her if she comes North again she will be executed. Davos tells he’s the one who will do it. Some will say Jon should have had her executed but she did bring him back to life so he had to give her a break here. I think Davos understood that.

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Jon and Sansa have a moment on the ramparts of Winterfell. Jon tells her that she is the lady of Winterfell and gets the large bedroom. “We wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for you.” Jon says,“I’m not a Stark.”

“To me you are,” Sansa tells him and then apologizes for not telling him about Little Finger and The Army of The Vale. “Do you trust him?” Jon asks. “You can’t trust Little Finger.” She tells him. But they need to trust each other.
“We have so many enemies now.” Jon says and all seems right in the world.

“Jon, we received a white raven from The Citadel. Winter is here.”
“That’s what father always promised.”

Dorne

“Let the big women speak.” Lady Tyrell

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Lady Tyrell meets with Elaria Sand and her Sand Snakes to form an alliance against Cersei and what’s left of The Lannisters. Lady Tyrell has lost everyone and as she says, this is not about the salvaging of her house. It’s all about revenge now. To that end, enter one Varys! Yes, a Martell –Tyrell –Targaryen alliance really stacks the deck, doesn’t it?

Mereen

“You have your armies, you have your ships, you have your dragons; everything you’ve ever wanted since you were old enough to want anything.” Tyrion Lannister to Daenerys

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Daario tells Dany the ships are ready. Danys tells Daario you are staying behind.

“I can’t bring a lover to Westeros.”
“A king wouldn’t think twice about it.”
“You want to be my mistress?”

After she bids Daario farewell, Dany goes to speak with Tyrion.
“How did he take it?”
“No tears”
“He wasn’t the first to love you and he won’t be the last”
“You have completely failed to console me”

Of course it makes sense, she may need to make an alliance by marriage and it’s better not to bring any ‘baggage’ with her to Westeros. Tyrion swears allegiance to her in the sweetest way.

“I would pledge my sword but I don’t actually own a sword.”
“It’s your counsel I need.” Dany tells him and then brings out something she had made for him. She presents him with the Hand of The King brooch. “You are the Hand of The Queen”. He is speechless for once and simply kneels before his queen.

Winterfell

“Every time I’m faced with a decision I close my eyes and see the same picture. A picture of me, on the Iron Throne… and you by my side.” Lord Baelish to Sansa

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Little Finger approaches Sansa and tells him the picture he has in his mind and then goes in for the kiss. Sansa puts up her hand and stops him but not forcefully, more like she isn’t ready to go there…..yet. “It’s a pretty picture.” She says and then walks away.
“You, my love, are the future of House Stark.” Little Finger says to her, putting all sorts of ideas in her head.

In the meeting of all the heads of the families of The North, they grumble about being associated with Wildlings. “We didn’t invade. We were invited”, Tormund tells them.
They think the war is over and want to go home and wait out the Winter. But Jon assures them the war is not over and there’s worse to come. This is when Lady Mormont, the breakout star of the Sixth Season stood up and blasted the old men in the room.

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“Your son was butchered at the Red Wedding, Lord Manderlay. But you refused the call. You swore allegiance to House Stark, Lord Glover. But in their hour of greatest need, you refused the call. And you, Lord Kerwin, your father was skinned alive by Ramsay Bolton, still, you refused the call. But House Mormont remembers. The North remembers. We know no king but the King in the North whose name is Stark. I don’t care if he’s a bastard. Ned Stark’s blood runs through his veins. He’s my king, from this day until his last day!”

“Lady Mormont speaks harshly but truthfully” Lord Manderlay admits. And with that they all lift their swords and pledged allegiance to ‘The White Wolf” (where is Ghost?)!

“The King in The North! The King in The North!”

The last time we saw a similar scene things didn’t turn out so well. Jon, like Robb doesn’t really want to sit on The Iron Throne. Sansa sits besides him and smiles but then looks over at the brooding Little Finger and the smile leaves her face. The wheels are always turning in his head and now he has the wheels turning in Sansa’s head. That look of worry on Sansa’s face may be more about what she fears she is capable of. Robb ultimately did not listen to Catelyn’s advice and it got them all killed.

The Tower Of Joy

Uncle Benji drops Bran off as close to The Wall as he could. Bran then goes into a trance and returns to The Tower Of Joy, this time following his father Ned inside. It is as we expected. Lyanna is dying after giving birth to a son. She asks Ned to promise to look after him. If Robert finds out he would kill the baby. “Promise me, Ned.” As Ned holds the baby in his arms and we zoom in on his little face we cut to Jon Snow’s face. Do we find out definitively that Rhaegar is the father? No. But we’re 99% sure, aren’t we?


Jon is hailed as King in The North because Ned Stark’s blood runs through him but we now know it doesn’t. What will he do when he finds out? What will the Northerners do? What will Sansa do? Things are going to get real complicated real fast.

Before we go further let’s hear from Charlotte Radwell and her take on this weeks Westeros Fashion!

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This episode really set the stage for next season, but for me it was all about Cersei’s badass Maleficent outfit. Every detail of it was perfectly fitted and villainous. The snakeskin texture of her dress, the crystal ring, the high collar, the way they made us wait to see the full body outfit… So dark in the best way. Then towards the end she caps on some metal shoulder pads and awe and admiration ensued (from only me probably).

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Other people existed in this episode- Gilly is looking great, color has been restored to her face and she wore something other than dirty rags or a Medieval Times costume.

Daenerys wore two different cape dresses, proving she is a super-woman-hero like we already knew. I like that her last scene cape dress was off the shoulder, fully embracing this summer’s number one trend but bringing it up a notch since she owns dragons.

I tried really hard to pay attention to the happenings of this episode because it was the season finale and I still don’t know everyone’s names or their relevance, so to any great outfits I failed to write about- I’m sorry and I’m sure I’ll see you next season!

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The episode ends with two of the most ominous scenes in the show’s history.

King’s Landing

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Jamie arrives just in time to watch Cersei be crowned Queen of The Seven Kingdoms.
What must be going through his head? His son is dead. All three children with Cersei are dead. He had told Edmure Tully how much he admired Cersei for her love of her children. That love is gone. Perhaps all love is gone. What is left for him? What is his place in her regime? She has The Mountain. Is Jamie any use to her now?

As an aside folks, the dream of ‘Cleghane Bowl’ is still alive!

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The final scene is a glorious one! Dany’s armada has set sail for Westeros. The Unsullied and The Dothraki, Yara, Theon and The iron Born army plus three dragons! The ships have dragon mastheads at dragons on it’s sails! And there is Dany with Tyrion, Varys (how did he get back so fast?) and Missandei by her side.

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This is what we have all been waiting for and longing to see, right? In fact, Season Six has given us just about everything we have been wanting to see in healthy servings. Now comes the hard part. Soon many people we like will be fighting each other. Even though Dany seems to have overwhelming force on her side I just have a bad feeling that things will not go as planned. It’s just too obvious. What will Jon and Sansa do? Just sit in Winterfell and wait to see what happens? Sansa, under Little Finger’s machinations, may press him to attempt to take King’s Landing. To avenge their family’s murderers, The Lannisters. To take the Iron Throne. Then there are The White Walkers and their army of the dead.

Throw in Arya who is on a killing spree, The Hound and The Brotherhood Without Banners who’s plan is unknown and Brienne who we assume will return to Winterfell to serve Sansa and we have quite a stew stirring in the pot!

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It’s been a great season!  On behalf of Charlotte and myself, thank you for following the recaps!

Until next year! Seven Greetings, Friends!