The title might officially be “The Last of the Starks,” but “The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly” would have also been very fitting. The good: Arya got credit for saving everybody, Brienne and Jaime finally sealed the deal, and Cersei is definitely about to get murdered (and her cartoon pirate villain sidepiece too). The bad: all the ships sunk (Arya/Gendry, Brienne/Jaime, Daenerys’s fleet… again), Ghost didn’t even get a goodbye pat on the head, and, of course, Missandei, who followed Daenerys all this way only to die, in chains once more, in a strange and xenophobic land. That shattering sound you just heard was my heart. And then there’s the ugly: Tyrion and Varys’s “maybe we should back Jon because he’s a dude” conversation, which, even if more a result of clumsy writing than conscious intent, is still gross; Gendry, a bastard from Flea Bottom, forgot his own name—you were a Waters, my dude, not a Rivers; and last but certainly not least, somehow nobody noticed that Daenerys had a pumpkin spice latte instead of a horn of ale at the celebration feast (that is, nobody at HBO—the viewers at home certainly did).
So tl;dr, it was a rough time on Game of Thrones. But, as the saying goes, there are diamonds to be found in the rough. Put on your hard hats and grab your canaries—we’re going mining, friends.
Sansa Says Goodbye
The burning of the dead after the Battle for the Dawn was an emotionally trying start to an emotionally trying episode, but if one moment stood out from the rest, it was Sansa pinning a direwolf to Theon’s armor as she said her final goodbyes. As far as my emotions are concerned, she might as well have jammed that pin right in my heart. A direct hit.
Sandor Clegane, Agony Aunt
Sandor just wanted his ale after surviving the Battle for the Dawn, but instead, he ended up stuck talking to not just one but two lovestruck fools. First there was Gendry—the only person in Winterfell who seems to care enough about Arya Stark’s wellbeing to wonder where she is and if she’s okay at the feast that is technically being held in her honor, but I digress—and then there was Tormund, the only person blindsided by Brienne and Jaime being a thing. Sandor Clegane absolutely did not sign up for this, but I am 110% on board—the look on his face as Tormund talked about his broken heart was absolutely priceless.
The intentions were spot on, the opening was perfection—just look at those heart eyes all around—and then… well. He went for “be my lady” when he should have gone with “be my family,” and really, Gendry, you should have known better. But anyway, Arya looked way too happy with the “I love you” part of his declaration before Gendry stuck his foot in it with all the castles and titles talk for this scene to be the end of the line for these two crazy kids. I hope.