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TV Review: Game Of Thrones 6.6 “Blood Of My Blood”
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Game Of Thrones 6.6 Jaime Lannister

Game of Thrones
Episode 6.6 “Blood of My Blood”
Directed by Jack Bender
Written by Bryan Cogman
Starring Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams, Carice van Houten, Alfie Allen, Natalie Dormer
Air date: May 29, 2016

WARNING: Spoilers for HBO’s Game Of Thrones….

On last week’s Game Of Thrones, we got a sneak peak at the origins of the White Walkers; Sansa Stark and half-brother Jon Snow readied to take back Winterfell from Ramsay Bolton; Arya Stark has her new assassin assignment; Theon and Yara Greyjoy fled the Iron Islands with its best ship after their murderous uncle won the Kingsmoot, and Bran Stark completely screwed everything up by visioning into the past and inadvertently creating “Hodor” while also alerting the Night King to his presence in the present.

This week’s episode, 6.6 “Blood of My Blood,” saw the return of several characters long forgotten and/or presumed dead; Samwell Tarly returns with his makeshift family to Horn Hill; Bran and Meera struggle to survive after the White Walker attack; Arya makes her first assassination attempt; Jaime and the Tyrell army get ready to battle the Faith Militant in Kings Landing; and Daenerys is ready to continue with her original plan to reclaim her family’s right to rule the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros.

“Blood of My Blood” begins with Meera dragging Bran on his sled in the snow. She’s exhausted and having trouble continuing on. Meanwhile, Bran is having visions of the past — his father’s beheading, the Red Wedding, Daenerys and her dragons, the Mad King ordering his men to “burn them all,” Jaime Lannister killing the Mad King, and more. When he comes out of the vision, he tells Meera they’ve been found, and that’s when the White Walker’s wights attack. It seems like there’s no hope for them, until a cloaked figure on horseback arrives and saves them! Who is this mystery man? We find out in the end that this man is none other than Benjen Stark, Bran’s uncle who was a Brother of the Night’s Watch who was presumed dead early on in Season 1 after he failed to return from a ranging mission north of the Wall. We learn now that Benjen was killed by White Walkers, and then revived by the Children of the Forest via dragonglass. So, he’s not quite dead, but not totally living either, but that’s all we know for now. Oh, and Bran is now officially the new Three-Eyed Raven, even though he’s not quite ready for the responsibility.

Meanwhile, Samwell Tarly, Gilly, and baby Sam are nearly at Horn Hill, Sam’s ancestral home. His father, Randyll, dislikes Wildlings and had wanted his son to become a man at the Wall by killing them, so Sam instructs Gilly to keep her heritage a secret. He also is claiming baby Sam as his own, that way his family will raise the baby after he goes off to the Citadel to study to become a Maester. When they arrive, Sam’s mother and sister are pleased to see them; they love Gilly and the baby. Randyll, on the other hand, is not pleased to see the son he disinherited. During dinner, Lord Tarly repeatedly insults his son, but Gilly jumps in to defend him, revealing that Sam knows how to use a sword and even killed a White Walker, which his father finds hard to believe. Unfortunately, Gilly revealed a little too much, as it becomes obvious that she’s really a Wildling. This really sets Lord Tarly off — he says Gilly can stay and work in the kitchen and baby Sam will be raised there, but that night is the last one Sam is ever to stay there. Sam tearfully says his good-byes to Gilly and the baby, and leaves…. but comes right back, because screw that! He says the three of them belong together and that they are all leaving. But, before they go, Sam takes Heartsbane, his family’s ancestral Valyrian steel sword, off the wall. Go, Sam!!! Where? We have no idea, because the Citadel doesn’t admit women, but I trust Sam just as much as Gilly does. It will all work out.

So, that’s what happened to some people we care about; here’s what’s happening to characters we wish would just be taken by the Others already: The Kings Landing crew. Margaery Tyrell is scheduled to make her Walk of Atonement from the Sept to the Red Keep. The High Sparrow has seemingly brainwashed her into believing that she’s a sinner who needs to atone, and as far as the viewer can tell, she means to do so. But, the last time we saw her locked away in the dungeon, we saw someone with a strong will who knows there’s a game to be played. Outside the Sept, Jaime arrives with the Tyrell army ready to slaughter all the Faith Militant soldiers. But the High Sparrow says no blood will be shed and no walk of atonement either, because Margaery has not only seen the error of her ways, but she’s brought someone else into the Light Of The Seven — and out comes dumbass inbred King Tommen to announcement the beginning of a new age of alliance between The Crown and The Faith. In the crowd, Olenna and Jaime realize they are beaten. But, could this have been Margaery’s plan to peacefully escape the dungeons? Will she manipulate her young husband into giving her more power once they are back at the Red Keep? It’s possible. But for now, back at the Red Keep, King Tommen relieves Jaime of his position of Lord Commander of the Kingsguard, and orders him to head their armies to help the Frays retake Riverrun. When Jaime and Cersei talk, she tells him to go lead the armies and that they will eventually have some no-mercy revenge on their enemies. This kind of talk makes them hot and heavy, and they make-out as they talk about what they’re going to do to their enemies…. eventually. Oh please fuck off with all of Kings Landing right now. I hope Jaime leaves and then realizes what a cunt his sister is and what a moron his son Tommen is and joins forces with the Starks. That’d be awesome.

So, where’s Jaime going again? To the Riverlands, where he has to help Walder Frey, the Tully bannerman who allied with the Lannisters to kill off the Starks at the Red Wedding. Catelyn’s brother Edmure was married to a Frey daughter at the wedding, but we never knew what happened to him. Turns out, the Freys have been holding him captive all this time, and had taken over the Tully home, Riverrun. We finally see Edmure for the first time since the wedding night, where he went off to be with his new bride, and his family and their men were slaughtered, including his sister Catelyn and nephew Robb Stark, the then King in the North. But recently, the Blackfish — Catelyn and Edmure’s outcast uncle — has returned and rebuilt their armies. And now Jaime has to help Walder reclaim the Riverlands. Unbeknownst to the Lannisters and the Freys, the Tully armies will soon be aligning with Jon Snow and Sansa Stark to retake Winterfell from Ramsay Bolton.

Then there’s Arya: The show has spent a lot of time showing Arya walking, training, begging, and contemplating. Now, she’s supposed to be giving up her entire identity to become one of the Faceless Men. Last week, we saw she was given a new assassin assignment: She is to kill Lady Crane, a famous local actress who’s currently starring in a stage production as Cersei Lannister. Arya scopes out her target and even talks to the actress, who seems kindly (last week, she asked a lot of questions about the hit, but her mentor Jaqen H’ghar says if she’s truly “no one” she’d have no questions). Arya sneaks poison into Lady Crane’s cup, and takes off. Interestingly enough, Arya returns at the last second to knock the cup out of the women’s hand and warn her that her understudy wants her dead. Well, there goes Arya’s apprenticeship, as the girl won’t be given a third chance. The Waif, Arya’s nemesis, sees what happened at the theater and reports back to Jaqen, who is disappointed that his new apprentice with potential didn’t work out. He gives the Waif the go-ahead to deal with Arya, instructing her not to make the girl suffer. With an evil smirk on her face, the Waif heads out. But, Arya has returned to where she hid her sword Needle, and is seemingly waiting for retaliation. We see her blow out a candle, leaving herself in darkness — perhaps this is so that she can face the Waif in the dark, since she had learned to fight while blind and would have an advantage over her opponent in this scenario.

The episode ends with Daenerys still leading her new Khalasar back to Meereen, where she is the ruling Queen. She asks her companion Daario how many ships she’d need to get all of her people — her khalesar, her Unsullied army, and her Second Sons mercenaries — across the sea to Westeros. Daario says at least 1,000 ships, but no one currently has that many for her use. (Hmm… aren’t they building 1,000 ships over at the Iron Islands, where the new King Euron Greyjoy plans to gift them to Daenerys after he marries her — a plan that’s completely only in his mind right now, since Daenerys probably doesn’t even know who the hell Euron is I’m sure.) Daenerys then leaves her caravan behind to check something out, and…. it’s a dragon! Drogon has returned to his mother, who then rides him back to her people, where she then gives a rousing speech in Dothraki about how they’re going to ride wooden ships across the sea to take over Westeros. This was a juxtaposition to Mace Tyrell’s speech earlier to his calvary that fell completely flat. Daenerys sure does know how to inspire, but seriously, HOW MANY OF THESE SPEECHES DO WE NEED TO HEAR ALREADY?

With only 10 episodes for Season 6, it seems like wasted time to have these characters reiterating the same stuff they’ve been spewing for years now. Yes, Daenerys will cross the sea and take over Westeros, we know, we know; Cersei and Jaime will crush their enemies! How’s that been working out for you, Wonder Twins?; Winter is coming… NO SHIT!!!!!! Why doesn’t anyone south of the Wall realize this? There’s enough gossip that spread across the sea to Essos where a tiny stage production can surprisingly accurately portray Ned Stark’s beheading, King Joffrey’s death by poison at his own wedding, Tyrion’s conviction of regicide, and Tywin’s murder on the potty, yet no one believes that the White Walkers have awoken and are coming to slaughter all of mankind?

Look, just get us to Winterfell and show us Sansa giving Ramsay a Burning Bed death or something equally as justifiable, and also vision us back to the Tower of Joy and give us the Jon Snow origin story we all so desperately want.


Game of Thrones Season 6: Episode #6 Preview (HBO)

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