Episode 6: Blood of My Blood
Maester Jersey Explains: Meet Me in the Riverlands
“Blood of My Blood” was sort of slow based on season 6’s standards but it did still bring us the return of several characters we haven’t seen in awhile. The first was Bran’s long lost uncle,
Cool Hand Ben Benjen Stark, who disappeared while ranging beyond the Wall almost 5 seasons ago. Good to see he’s still alive, well not so much alive, but at least sentient so that’s something. But I’ll let Doc dive deeper into that. Benjen’s return was certainly more dramatic but there were some other characters whose reappearances, to me, are far more interesting at the moment.
The characters I’m talking about are central to the part of Westeros known as the Riverlands, they are Walder Frey, Edmure Tully, and the Blackfish. The last we saw of them Edmure was being carried away to
consummate his marriage a dungeon, and Walder Frey was executing (pun intended) the greatest blindside Jeff Probst the North has ever seen. When we find them today Walder is bickering with a couple of his many sons (he’s almost 100 years old and reproduces like a rabbit) about how they lost control of Riverrun. After Roose Bolton (dead) and Tywin Lannister (dead) helped Walder eliminate Robb Stark and Co. at the Red Wedding they granted him control of the greatest castle in the Riverlands, Riverrun, which is the house seat of the Tully’s. Only problem is they let Brynden Tully aka the Blackfish (because he was the family outcast and their crest is a fish, get it?) escape the Red Wedding and he has now apparently regained control of Riverrun.
An important thing to know about they Freys is that they are essentially the hillbillies of Westeros. Most of them are idiots, they’re very unattractive so they never get good marriage proposals, and if not for the fact that they control the largest toll bridge in the country they would be irrelevant. So now that he has finally garnered himself and his family some semblance of respect Walder Frey is not going to go back to kissing Tully ass without a fight. Lucky for him he has an ace in the hole, or should I say an Edmure in the dungeon. Enter a haggard ass Edmure Tully who people forget was actually the one who got married the night of the Red Wedding and they also forget that he is rightful Lord of Riverrun which makes him an extremely valuable hostage. The Blackfish will not do anything crazy while his nephew is in the custody of his enemies which gives the Freys a fair amount of leverage. These two opposing forces are essentially at a stalemate which in Westeros means one force sitting outside of a castle while the other force sits inside with the doors locked. They pretty much stare at each other until one blinks or starves, this is called a siege.
So now we are caught up with the players who have been in the Riverlands this whole time but have been off-screen. But wait! Could there be another set of characters getting ready to have a reunion in the Riverlands, hmmm? We already knew Sansa sent Brienne to link up with the Blackfish and try to get him to help take back Winterfell. Now we see Tommen sending Jamie in to the field, really just to get him out of the picture, to lead the Lannister army and clean up the Frey/Tully mess.
Plus while he was saying his goodbyes to Cersei he dropped a tidbit about the Brotherhood Without Banners still causing trouble. Remember them? They are the ragtag bunch led by the red priest Thoros of Myr and the unkillable Beric Dondarrion that held Arya and wanted to ransom her back to her family. Ya know before the whole “all of them being murdered” thing. Arya eventually ran away from them and that was the last we saw of Thoros and Beric. So I wonder why now after all this time being left out of the story is the Brotherhood being brought back? Could they have a new man or possibly. . .lady in charge, hmmmmm??? If you don’t already know the name Lady Stoneheart I would suggest not clicking the link and letting yourself be surprised. But those of you who do know the name I think it’s finally safe to assume we’ll get to see Stoneheart in action after several seasons of the cast denying she would be part of the show. Everyone involved with Game of Thrones is a bunch of fucking liars.
Coach’s Character Rankings
Sam Jr. Went ahead and stole the damn show on Sunday night. That’s the cutest wildling baby I ever did see. To think that ol’ bastard Craster wanted to give it over to the White Walkers. Are all babies that are born of incest blondes? Is that where Westeros gets all their blondes from? Doesn’t matter. That is one adorable little hell raiser right there.
Not to be out done by his fake son, Sam also had a decent episode sans a very awkward dinner with his piece of shit father. When life hands you lemons, they say make lemonade. When life hands Sam lemons, he says fuck the lemons and bails. Go ahead and make fun of my slightly attractive wildling woman, I’mma steal your Heartsbane and use it to slay hella White Walkers you dirty old bitch. I am semi-glad we have a new dad to hate on the show. With Tywin gone, Jamie turning face, and Roose Bolton getting all sorts of stabbed, it’s nice to have the patriarchal figure that everyone wants to beat with a rubber hose until they end up looking like Oberyn after a pay-per-view trial by combat.
Lady Crane coming in third for this weeks power rankings. She was as good as dead as far as the many-faced God is concerned. Jaqen H’ghar decided to give this death to his little girl with no name protege, and boy did Arry fail him…as suspected. Lady Crane not only gets to live to see another day, but she stole the freakin’ play. She’s the only actress on that dais that is worth a damn, just carrying the cast from town to town having fun pretending to be someone she’s not. This struck a chord with ol’ Arya Stark, who seems like she has decided she does have a name, and it’s Arya Stark, and she’s freakin’ awesome. Props to Lady Crane for helping her realize this.
Oh helloooooo. Did you think Benjen Stark aka Cool Hand Ben was the only character to surprise us with a visit back on the silver screen? Oh no, my friends, Drogon the Dragon (sick name) is back. He’s looking healthier than Lebron James as well. Mama there goes that Dragon. Burn to death the Khals…check. Rally the troops to head back to Mereen and get your crew ready to take over kings landing…check. Find the biggest, baddest dragon…double check. It looks like Ms. Stormborn is finally getting ready to head to Westeros. I won’t hold my breath because she’s still about 1,000 ships short, but maybe Theon will come and collect them.
It’s Mista Steal Yo King! The High Sparrow check-mated the King with his own King, using his own mate. Somehow, that sentence made sense. Margaery Tyrell dog on gone and done it. She switched sides…or so it seems. Tommen didn’t have the scrote to live and let live, and the man who claims to have no agenda just out maneuvered Cersei Baratheon, Grandma Tyrell, Kevan Lannister, and Jamie. Now, Jamie is forced to go to Riverrun (where Brienne is also heading too…queue the Lady Stoneheart hype) to try and take back a castle nobody cares about except for
Filch Walder Frey. That smile the High Sparrow had on his mug when he beat the Lannister’s three of a kind with a Royal Flush was absolutely menacing. Clearly the man has an agenda. We’re going to get another trial by combat, and one champion has been chosen. Senior Frankenmountain. Who will be the Faith’s representative? I hope it goes one of 3 ways.
- The Obvious Choice, let’s see if the Hound is still alive and have a Clegane-bowl.
- Loras Tyrell. Otherwise the character is seemingly useless.
- KING TOMMEN himself. What would Cersei do? The internal turmoil that would cause would shake Westeros forever.
Doc’s Death of the Week
Well folks, the streak was broken this week in Game of Thrones…Not a living person died in this week’s episode. The first time this has happened since Season 1 ep. 3. That is 53 straight episodes of death, a streak that may rival many of the great streaks in human history. Cal Ripken’s Iron Man streak, Lou Gehrieg’s hitting streak, The OU football teams unbeaten streak, and this streak will always be in the same conversation forever now. There have been a few episodes with no on screen deaths but those have still included some off screen deaths, like in season 3 ep.2, where the only death was the off screen death of Lord Tully of River Run. The only implied death was that rabbit that Cool Hand Ben was cooking up after saving Bran. So technically death of the week will go to that rabbit. But speaking of Benjen, his story is pretty interesting and is finally back in the show so I will use this space to talk about his re-emergence.
The last we’ve seen of Benjen Stark was actually in…you guessed it Season 1 ep.3 (This show is playing some sort of 4D chess while we are all just playing checkers made out of cardboard). Benjen went out beyond the wall as First Ranger and never returned. We all assumed the worst but as you should know by now, things aren’t always as it seems in GoT. So Benjen, rather nonchalantly tells his tale to Bran.
But an advanced viewer of this show knows there is probably much more to be told. How did Benjen know what Bran saw in his visions? Does he know everything Bran knows? I mean he knew exactly where to find Bran. How did he know he was the 3 eyed Raven? There are so many questions about how Benjen knew all this and what the extent of his powers and new role will be. There are clearly some Whitewalker and Children of the Forrest Magic running through him now, I mean he’s not looking great.
As always, I’m a fan of seeing Starks reclaim some power so I’m very excited to see where this eerie storyline will lead.