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Sweatpants & TV | Game of Thrones, Season 7, Episode 4 – “The Spoils of War”

By Jessica Grey

Missed an episode? Catch up with episodes 1, 2 and 3.

Seven hells, y’all! This week’s episode of Game of Thrones was …many things.

So, yeah – usual warning about spoilers, yada yada yada, and away we go!

It was published ten years ago, y’all. Don’t come at me for spoiling that one.

The episode opens outside of Highgarden, where Jaime is overseeing the transportation of an obscene amount of gold bound for the Iron Bank of Braavos by way of King’s Landing. And Bronn’s giving Jaime a hard time about looking sullen: “Queen of Thorns give you one last prick in the balls before saying goodbye?” Oh, Bronn. You have no idea. Jaime sends Bronn off with the Tarlys to *ahem* encourage farmers to hand over their harvests; meanwhile, in King’s Landing, Cersei, with the gold in transit from the Reach, has informed Tycho “the Iron Bank’s very own Mycroft” Nestoris that the Lannister’s debt to the Iron Bank is about to be paid in full. Now Tycho is ready to negotiate outside investment for Cersei’s attempt to “reestablish control of the continent and everyone on it” provided, of course, that the gold arrives.

Next, we head up north to Winterfell and see Baelish being all Baelish-y again, this time with Bran. Littlefinger gives Bran the catspaw dagger that Bran’s would-be assassin wielded. When Bran asks who the dagger belonged to, Baelish says that no one knows and that’s ultimately what ignited the War of the Five Kings. Uh-huh, right. As Littlefinger waxes creepily about Bran’s long struggle, he tells Bran that he imagines it must have been difficult to return home and find such chaos. And then Bran busts out this stunner:

Y’all should have heard the loud, guttural sound that came out of my mouth. I sounded like an alto foghorn.

Look at Baelish’s face! *cacklesnort* That crestfallen look is almost enough to make up for Bran’s asshattery last week. Well, it was almost enough until Meera comes in to say goodbye and Bran turns on the whole “I’m the Three-Eyed Raven now and, as such, I’m above all this basic human decency silliness” charm again; dude, I know you’ve spent a long hot minute beyond the Wall and doing your whole mystic raven thing, but you and I both know your mother gave you better home training than that. Luckily, this is about the time Arya comes riding in toward Winterfell, so I got a break from wanting to punch Bran in the face.

Fun fact: the day this episode aired also happened to be Sisters Day—August 6, 2017. *happy tear*

Okay—yay!—Sansa and Arya are reunited but I’m pretty sure Arya is starting to get tired of people not taking her vengeful, murderous plans seriously. Also, now more Bran. I’m just really not impressed with him lately—I know he’s important in the long run and blah blah blah, but that doesn’t justify his being an ass. My friend, Eli Keel, described it best, as far as I’m concerned: Bran is the shitty woke white dude who spent the summer in Kamek or something, and is now all super deep and better than you, but still doesn’t get why trigger warnings are important.” Anyway, Arya figures out her brother isn’t quite the same, Sansa figures out that Baelish is trying to manipulate Bran and that Arya was super not kidding about the murder list, and Arya is now the owner of a Valyrian steel dagger; I suppose it wasn’t an entirely unproductive trip to the Godswood.

Meanwhile, down at Dragonstone, Missandei and Daenerys get, like, thirty seconds of girl talk—yes! Come through, Missandei!—before they’re interrupted by Jon Snow who would like to take Daenerys into a cave. I mean, y’all know what happened the last time Jon Snow hung out with a woman in a cave: many things. *eyebrow waggle* Not this time, though; for now, Jon is trying to legitimately forge an alliance with Dany. He takes her into the cave to show her the huge reserve of dragonglass and the markings left behind by the Children of the Forest—markings that we’ve seen throughout the show’s run. Seeing the Children’s images of the White Walkers, Dany is significantly closer to being convinced and declares that she will fight for the North …if Jon bends the knee (though, honestly Jon, it wouldn’t be the first time you’ve done that in a cave—just sayin’.).

Back up at Winterfell, Arya finds Brienne training Podrick and insists that Brienne train her: she did beat the Hound in single combat, after all. Meanwhile, Sansa talking to Baelish about the business of Winterfell, when they come upon Arya convincing Brienne to spar with her. Sansa looks kind of dismayed:

Everyone’s facial expressions after Arya thoroughly trounces Brienne are interesting: Brienne is surprised and impressed, Arya’s feeling pretty confident, Sansa looks perturbed, and Baelish looks pleased. I don’t like it when Baelish looks that pleased about things. But that blank, unimpressed stare Arya gives Baelish, though!

Then we bounce back down to Dragonstone, where Davos is giving Jon a hard time about the apparent crush he’s working on and, then, passes along some of the most important information Stannis had ever imparted to him. They come upon Missandei as they are walking and the three get involved in a conversation and—just as Tyrion said would happen if Jon talked to the people serving Dany—Missandei tells them that she and the others who came with Dany from Essos are not loyal to her because of her bloodline but because Daenerys is the queen they chose. And then a single, solitary Greyjoy ship appears.

Oh, shit!

After Jon acknowledges that the only reason he is not straight-up murdering Theon’s ass is because of his helping Sansa get away from Ramsey Bolton, Theon claims that he came back to ask the queen to help him rescue his sister. But—surprise!—the queen isn’t on Dragonstone. Dun-dun-duuuuun!

Then we cut away back to the Reach, where Ser Tarly continues to prove himself an asshole who, in this case, is way too eager to flog people. After he rides off all disappointed that he has to give people fair warning before he beats them, Jaime and Bronn talk to Tarly’s-son-who-is-not-Sam about the battle. During the conversation, Bronn hears hoofbeats—a lot of them. And, then, suddenly, there is a horizon full of Dothraki riders—while the Lannister troops scramble to form some kind of defense, Bronn tells Jaime to leave and get to King’s Landing, which Jaime refuses to do uttering what would pass for famous last words, had they been his last (they weren’t):

*cue Drogon’s roar*

Fun fact: dragons are really good at breaking through lines of defense. They really should run some offseason camp for offensive linemen.

So, that was less a battle and more like watching a division three high school team play against the Seahawks. Bronn did get to try out Qyburn’s little invention, though; so, now everyone knows that the dragons can be injured. Although, I’d think they also know that doing so is going to piss off said dragon.

Welp. The Lannister army is pretty well decimated, Jaime narrowly avoided becoming Lannister flambé and is hopefully not attempting the whole drowned god baptism thing, and, while the gold made it to King’s Landing, the wagon train of food just became kindling. I cannot wait to see what next week has in store for us!

Valar Dohaeris

 

Large promo source: http://screenrant.com/hbo-releases-game-of-thrones-season-7-character-posters/ – © HBO, 2017

Small promo source: https://filmreviewonline.com/2017/06/23/game-of-thrones-season-7-posters-including-littlefinger-starks-and-lannisters/ – © HBO, 2017

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