Sunday, August 6, 2017

Game of Thrones Season 7 Episode 4 The Spoils of War

Game of Thrones (2011-)
Season 7 - 7 episodes (2017)

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Created by: David Benioff, D.B. Weiss
Starring: Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington, Sophie Turner, Lena Headey, Maisie Williams, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Aidan Gillan, Gwendoline Christie

HBO's fantasy drama series adapted from George R.R. Martin's book series A Song of Ice and Fire follows the civil war of kings and usurpers in Westeros who wish to sit on the throne. The scale and scope of the story is staggering, fully realized with a large ensemble cast.

The show is speculated to conclude after thirteen episodes, though it may be broken into two seasons. Season six put all the characters on a course to get back to Westeros for the big fight that's inevitable. You can devise a rough outline of where season seven is headed, though I expect many surprises.

Review: Episode 4 - The Spoils of War
This episode was simply amazing. It's easily the best of season 7 so far and stands toe to toe with the other top episodes.
We get a battle full of fire, an unexpected sparring partner for Arya, and Bronn makes a return.
Cersei is looking for outside investment to grow her armies. She seems undeterred by the challengers to the throne, promising the Iron Bank she'll pay them back. She has the gold too.
The Lannisters will use Tyrell gold to pay back the Iron Bank, well that's the plan. Jamie will oversee transport. Bronn aided in the attack and asks for Highgarden castle as a reward. Jamie convinces him to wait until the war is over, though Bronn is dubious as to how peaceful post-war will be. Bronn always provides good comic relief, a side character that keeps returning because he's just that much fun. He's gone from mercenary to lord.
Arya returns to Winterfell, though the guards doubt her identity. Bran and Sansa reunited in episode three, and now Arya has returned. All the living Starks are back in Winterfell, save for Jon Snow, but he isn't a Stark, not really.
This is a big moment, reuniting the sisters. The last time they were together was in season one. Their stories are long and difficult. They go to Bran and Arya realizes that Bran knows much more than he physically should. He knows she was headed to King's Landing for Cersei. He knows she has a list.
I predicted Arya would thin the herd. What she'll do now is an interesting question. She may be the most valuable single weapon the Starks have, at least against humans, but Jon is looking to fight the undead.
Bran now has a wheelchair. Littlefinger presents him with the dagger that was intended to kill him in season one.
Meera's time with Bran has come to and end as she's no longer needed to transport him. She's upset at how little he has to say after such a journey that saw many die, but Bran admits to Meera that he isn't really Bran anymore. He's so much more. Bran died in season six when he became the three eyed raven.

This season is moving along. It's an abbreviated season and the end is near, but we've been waiting for the Stark children to reunite since the first season.
Arya asks to train with Brienne, reminding Brienne of the oath to Lady Stark. This is a fun scene. Arya is good, very good. This is easily the best scene of the season. When Brienne asks her who taught her, Arya responds "No one." Which is closer to the truth than anyone might imagine. She trained with the faceless men, known as no one.
Jon has his dragon glass, but the cost is still unclear. That isn't done until it's back in Winterfell. The cave with dragon glass has carvings depicting the first men, the children of the forest, and the white walkers. As Jon states, the enemy has always been real. It seems Daenerys may be coming around to the idea of white walkers, but she has one demand. Daenerys tells Jon she'll fight for the North if he'll bend the knee. Jon isn't keen on the idea.

Daenerys is upset that she's losing. Tyrion's plan has lost them Dorne, the Iron Islands, and the Reach. She questions Jon as to how he would approach the war if he was in her position. He urges her to be different from her predecessors. Using the dragons to level castles is more of the same.
One way or another those dragons are going to be unleashed.

Missandei asks Jon about his last name and Jon asks her about advising Daenerys. Missandei chooses to serve Daenerys, she's not bound by a name and tradition. Davos concedes she has a point.
I knew the dragons would be unleashed soon, and we don't have to wait long at all. The Dothraki attack the Lannisters, and it's a lot of Dothraki. It's a losing battle, and that's before the dragons show up, Daenerys riding atop. The budget for this episode has to be huge, dragons, a battle, and lots of fire.
Jamie was in charge of getting the gold to pay off the debt, that's not happening now. The Lannisters take one huge step forward and a giant leap back.
Syndergaard is in the center, throwing a spear.
New York Mets pitcher Noah Syndergaard has a split second cameo throwing a spear.

This show does war well, depicting chaos and confusion. We follow Bronn in the turmoil, expecting his death. We can see fear on his face, but he's going for the dragon killer cross bow. It works on old dragon skulls, will it work on a live dragon? Bronn hits the dragon in the shoulder, but the dragon then destroys the cross bow. That was short lived, but I never expected that to get very far.
Jamie sees a chance to dispatch Daenerys as Tyrion watches, but it was a rather short sighted plan as she's right next to a dragon. Jamie's fate is unclear as the episode ends.

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