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For the Night is Dark, and Full of Whatevers - Game of Thrones, Season 8, Episode 1

April 14, 2019

Obviously there are spoilers

My quickly recollected recap from last season of HBO’s cash cow and yet also somehow it’s silliest show.

  • Fighty pirate man (Euron) captured Asha…sorry…Yara…Greyjoy and Theon fell off a boat and headbutted someone a lot.
  • Jaime Lannister told Cersei that the Lannisters may as well give up. Rather than taking a better lesson from the attack on the wagon train,which was “if you can wing a dragon with just one scorpion, maybe build a lot more”.
  • In a fight which attempted to copy the Battle of the Bastards for “great cinematics, idiotic plot”, Jon Snow and some other people hung out on an island for eight weeks or so while Gendry ran to the Wall, and then got rescued by Dany.
  • The White Walkers and their World War Z zombie army came up with a new trick for hiding hundreds of meters of industrial weight chain, and used it to pull a dead dragon up from a lake. Zombie-dragon solved the “we don’t really have any logical plot plan for getting the walkers past the wall”.
  • The most boring quest in the world saw Bran have a vision to confirm what everyone knew anyway.
  • Jon fucked his aunt.

Now it’s time for “we abandoned all pretense at subtlety after we overtook George RR Martin, and now the decline is even steeper than the books” final season of Game of Thrones!

This recap written “live” while watching.

On with the idiocy!

The “previously on…” reminds me that Cersei’s “let the monsters fight each other and we’ll deal with the rest” remains probably the most sensible strategy.

I have Euron Greyjoy in my office Game of Thrones deadpool for this episode.

Aren’t the Unsullied, and Missandei, going to be freezing? And you kinda get the feeling that Dany is way too happy with causing complete terror among the local citizenry. “Look, dragons, hahahah, isn’t it funny how the poor people scream?”

Sansa looks and behaves more regal than Dany. Like, waaaaay more regal. Oh, and practical; “did nobody think about feeding people?” More helpful than “dragons eat whatever they want” jibes, to be sure.

A quick brothel interlude…Bronn more practical on potential for harming dragons than Jaime’s “we’re all DOOOOMED”.

As the premier seafaring family in Westeros, you would think that at least one Greyjoy might have thought about setting a watch on their fucking ships. Fighty pirate man captured Yara last season because they didn’t set watch, now Theon steals Yara back because fighty pirate man also doesn’t set watches. Maybe Euron is too busy congratulating himself for avoiding getting friendzoned by the queen.

Can we let Sansa win?

Davos throws up some more of his “simple wisdom”. Yep, people shockingly don’t immediately fall to trust and loyalty to a woman who’s never been anywhere near their kingdom before and whose entire claim to legitimacy is “has dragons”. This, according to Davos, is them being “stubborn”.

Dany’s all about the dragon related punning today. That’ll get Sansa’s respect.

Are they doing a “Gendry and Arya” romance thing? That’d be…weird.

No, Jon…we don’t have faith in you. Why will she be a good queen? What’s she ever actually done other than have dragons, be a terrible white savior leader in Mereen, and have sexy times with Jon?

Still, making friends and influencing people is Dany. A cheeky joke with Sam, then the mildly awkward admission of having burned his family alive.

Exposition ahoy!

Thanks, Sam. Your research, plus Bran’s intensely tedious multi-season quest, means we finally get that scandalous bit of gossip about Jon’s parentage out in the open.

Has anyone noticed, by the way, the intensely selective adherence to “legitimacy” throughout the show? All the crap about Stannis being the heir and not Renly because he was older, even though Robert just won the crown through force of arms by overthrowing the last Targaryen king.

“You gave up the crown to save your people? Would she do the same?”

Now, I’m not saying it won’t be awkward to tell Dany that a) she’s not officially heir and, b) she’s sleeping with her nephew. But on what basis would her giving up the crown materially “save” her people?

All this crap about legitimacy is just that, crap. It’s all just a big clusterfuck of fighting, nobody’s actually “rightful”. Cersei probably is the most legitimate at this point; all the Baratheon’s are dead, and she was married to the last undisputed crowned king.

Night King arts and crafts

That was icky and kinda Hellraiser-ish.

Or, perhaps, the Night King is a Warhammer chaos worshipper?

Stare!

Oh, this isn’t a stupid vision stare. This is an actually reasonable “you threw me out a window and crippled me, and turned me into the dullest character on the show” stare.

Next week…

Dany goes even more Viserys-ish with Jaime.

Training montage.

And fighty time to come…when the sun comes up!


Robin Cannon

Random thoughts on culture, entertainment, politics, and the world today. robin-cannon.com for my more professionally-focused writing. @shinytoyrobots on Twitter.