GAME OF THRONES RECAP S8EP5 THE BELLS

Paul Mendoza

“They say that every time a Targaryen is born, the gods toss a coin and the world holds its breath.”

Dany is going full Mad Queen. Get over it. You knew it was a possibility. Hints have been strewn throughout the 8 seasons. “ A Targaryen alone ids a dangerous thing”. “Its a coin flip”. In the Season Two finale Dany saw a vision in the House of The Undying of The Red Keep destroyed, burned and snow falling through the roof. It wasn’t snow, it was ash.

The loss of Jorah and Missendei and Rhaegal was just too much for her. Plus Jon won’t sleep with her anymore. Come on, Jon! You can’t get it it up to save the Seven Kingdoms?

DRAGONSTONE

“She betrayed your trust. This is a victory for her” Dany to Jon about Sansa

Varys is busy sending out ravens telling everyone about who Jon Snow really is. He made his decision. He even approaches Jon about betraying Dany and becoming queen which he absolutley refuses to do. Then Tyrion confesses to Dany that Varys has betrayed her. Dany, looking half mad, already figured out that Jon told Sansa and Sansa told Tryion and Tyrion told Varys. So they are all traitors. Tyron throws himself at her mercy and it works for now. Grey Worm and his soldiers come for Varys. He takes off his rings and places them in a jar. For who? I don’t know. But he knows his time is up. They take him to the beach. Reminds me of when Mellisandre would have beach bon fires with people as sacrifices back in Season One. Tyron and Varys have a solemn and heartfelt farewell and then Dany says “Dracarys”. Drogon looking scarier than ever comes out of the shadows and pulls close to Varys and incinerates him.

Dany chastises Jon about telling Sansa his secret. He again tells her he doesn’t want the throne.

“I don’t have love here. I only have fear.” Dany tells Jon. She again tries to rekindle what love there was between them but Jon just can’t go there. Dany gives up. “Alright then. Let it be fear”

TyrIon begs Dany not to do what she plans. Knowing he can’t change her mind he asks one last thing. If they know that they have lost they will ring the bells and that will mean they surrender. She agrees to stop the attack if she hears the bells. Then she tells Tyrion that they caught Jamie on his way back to Kings Landing. “The next time you fail me will be the last time you fail me.” she tells Tyrion. And that does not bode well for TyrIon

THE NIGHT BEFORE THE BATTLE

 

“I’m Arya Stark. I’m going to kill Queen Cersei.” Ayra

The Hound and Arya arrive and are stopped by a guard. She is determined to kill Cersei and he is after his brother. They have no time to deal with silly guards. They ride on past him and continue on their quest.

Meanwhile, Tyrion frees Jamie. He has Davos arrange to have a boat ready at the same place he smuggled them into Kings Landing last season. he tells Jamie to get Cersei and sneak out through the Dragon dungeons below the Red Keep. He got to return the favor to Jamie for freeing him at the end of Season Four. But Dany will see this as another betrayal for sure.

THE LAST WAR

“Tens of thousands of innocent lives for one not particularly innocent dwarf. Seems like a fair trade.” Tyrion

Holy Crap!! I guess one dragon was enough after all. The battle starts thrillingly with Dany and Drogon destrying the Iron Fleet and then taking out all the scorpions. We see The Hound and Arya make it inside the gate to The Red Keep before it’s shut. Hundreds of people clamoring to be let in including Jamie. He knows his way though and will find a back way in.

Then Dany and Drogon take out the front gate of the city and starts annihilating the Golden Company. Grey Worm, Jon and Davos lead the armies through the gate and start the slaughter. By the time they come face to face with the Queen’s Guard it’s obvious the battle is over. The Queen’s Guard throw down their swords. Jon looks relieved. You hear people from all over shouting for someone to ring the bells. Ring the bells! Surrender! 

Dany and Drogon are perched on a wall. Dany looks around, out of breath. The bells start ringing. That’s it! It’s over! Tyron looks up at Dany. Dany looks to The Red Keep. She almost starts crying. Then she snaps. She takes off and starts burning everything and everyone. Once that starts happening Grey Worm throws his spear at the head of the Queen’s Guard. It becomes a free for all. The worst of what war is. The blood lust is running high. Jon tries to keep his men from fighting and Grey Worm sees that. He’s going to tell!!

The Hound and Arya make it to the map room but he sees how this is going. He tells Arya to go home. Cerise is dead anyway. She still wants to kill her. He says he’s lived with vengeance all his life and look at him. “Do you want to be like me?” he asks her. “If you go with me you’ll die here”. He continues on and she calls after him by his actual name. “Sandor! Thank you.” You can see that he cares for her and she cares for him. But her journey to safety is not an easy one.

Qyburn convinces Cersei to move to a safe place, if there could be one, and as they make their way down the stairwell the building starts collapsing on top of them. The Hound shows up at the bottom of the stairwell. “Hello, big brother”. He quickly dispatched with the small band of soldiers not killed by falling building and The Mountain is ready for him. Cherry orders I’m to stay by her but this is personal. Qyburn tries to get his creation to obey but The Mountain picks him up by the scruff of his neck and tosses him to his death. Cersei, silently, makes his way down the stairs and past the brothers. Very wise decision.

Jamie ends up going the long way around and ends up on the beach. He sees the boat that Davos has left for his and Cerise’s getaway. But before he can enter the red Keep’s basement Euron emerges from the ocean! It’s time to settle this mano a mano. Some people were upset Jamie didn’t use his golden hand to knock Euron around but he did! He also got stabbed twice! Eventually Jamie overpowered Euron and stuck him in the belly and twisted it. As he made his way into the castle Euron kept yelling “I got you! I got you! I’m the man who killed Jamie Lannister!” Idiot. No one else will ever know that.

We finally get Clegane Bowl! It’s beautifully shot. The two brothers fighting on that stairway to nowhere, the sky behind them and Dany and Drogon flying by and breathing fire. It’s apocalyptic. The fight is well cut with Arya trying to make her way threw the streets of Kings Landing. The Hound jams his sword through his brother but he pulls it out like a splinter. The Mountain beats the hell out of him and tries to gouge his eyes out like he did with Oberon. The Hound takes his dagger and keeps stabbing him. “Fucking die!!” he shoves the dagger into his eye and this gets him to let up. He can’t be killed. The Hound decides to pull a kamikaze run and runs at him and off they go from the ramparts and into the fire below. It was the only way this could have ended.

Jamie somehow stays alive long enough to find Cersei in the map room. She’s overjoyed to see him. He leads her down and down into the Dragon lair of the dungeon but the castle has been collapsing and their exit is blocked with rubble. With nowhere to run Jamie accepts his fate but Cersei is a crying mess. “I don’t want to die. Jamie, don’t let me die. I want our baby to live” Jamie takes hold of her and tells her to just look at him. “We’re the only thing that matters. Only us.” They hold each other as the castle comes tumbling down on them. Some were upset that Cersei got to die a romantic death and not killed by Arya or Dany but it certainly wasn’t a pleasant death and it was a fitting death. She died in The Red Keep. She was a great adversary. It took a dragon to beat her.

Aya running for her life amidst the carnage that Dany and Drogon created was amazing. She got trampled on, knocked down and almost set ablaze but she managed to survive. She tried to help the woman and her daughter that helped her but she couldn’t. She would find their charred remains in the street where she left them. It was a gruesome depressing sequence. In the end she finds a white horse standing in the street as if waiting for her. She hops on and rides out of town. A lot of people speculating what the white horse symbolized. I immediately thought of the line from the bible.

“And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.? Revelations

This could mean that Arya is Death and she will kill Dany. It could also mean that Dany is Death and she brought hell to Kings landing. Both could be true.

As for Jon, he had to defend himself but he was dazed to see what his own men were doing. He had to kill one of his own who was trying to rape a young girl. Finally, he and Davos called for everyone to pull back and leave the city.

The dragon fire was setting off the stashes of ‘wildfire’ that was stashed all over the city. I was reminded of the bombing of Dresden in World War II. Dresden was completely demolished by the British even though it was not a military threat. It was revenge pure and simple. The destruction of Kings landing was also revenge. Dany may not have planned to do it but once her blood was up she couldn’t stop.

There is a lot of backlash about Dany turning into the Mad Queen like her father but the clues were there. Perhaps if they had a full ten episode season they could have laid out the case a little better but I am fine with it. It makes sense to me.

SIDE WIGHTS

Did anyone catch the Aaron Rodgers cameo?

Now that Drogon has done that much killing can he be allowed to survive?

People that were upset about how slow the first two episodes were are probably wishing they could go back to those salad days.

 

Did you notice how Dany’s attire changed throughout the season? She started out wearing white then red started showing up here and there then full on red dress, finally on the day of the battle she’s in all black. The transformation is complete.

How will Jon or Arya be able to kill Dany when she is surrounded by The Unsullied and Dothraki and Drogon? If Jon does it will be a suicide mission. If Arya does it, she will need a face. The only one Dany trusts now is Grey Worm.

George R R Martin said the end would be bittersweet. It already is.

5 THINGS I THINK I KNOW

First of all, let us say farewell to the fallen: The Hound, The Mountain, Varys, Qyburn, Euron, Jamie and Cersei.. It was an apocalyptic scene. Amazing that Arya survived.

1 Dany will execute Tyrion

2 Sansa will survive to be Queen of the 7 Kingdoms

3 Jon will have to kill Grey Worm or maybe Arya

4 Jon must kill Dany

5 Arya will go to Storm’s End and be with Gendry