If you've not seen the episode yet then don't read my thoughts... seriously! spoilers ahead!
We open on Jon Snow's corpse with a lovely shot coming over the walls towards his body, Ghost howls in a most haunting fashion (yeah book purists, Ghost was mute in the books, moan moan moan, get over it, it's an adaptation of the books not an identical transfer to film and I for one loved it). Davos discovers the body and with the help of some nearby Snow loyalists they move the body to his chamber, he lingers looking at the blood is there something more to that? Melisandre calls in has a look and appears defeated as her visions appear to be incorrect. Yes he's dead, without doubt, stone cold. Great scenes and well played by all. Edd goes off to seek help from the wildlings.
We move on to the Mess Hall where ser Alliser Thorne, attempts to get the rest of the Night’s Watch to his side. It's clear there are a number of brothers still loyal to Snow or if not loyal at least feel that what has been done is wrong. He gives them a speech in which he lays out the reasons for his treason, it becomes clear he's winning some to his side as the hub bub and shouts reduce from the crowd. Although if you pay attention you can see there's some among them who still look unhappy about it.
Ramsay briefly cares about Myranda before suggesting feeding her corpse to the dogs.... well you don't waste good meat in the North do you? Roose certainly appears to be putting him in his place, the boy has messed up, he's lost Sansa and Theon (Reek) clearly daddy is less than impressed. Apparently Ramsay see's attacking Castle Black from the South as a soft target, you better make sure you bring more than 20 good men if you try that lad... us crows might be a bit tougher than you expect, we can hold off against Thenns... and everyone fucking hates Thenns right! Bloody Boltons!
We move on to the escape of Reek (Theon) and Sansa, good stuff from both, seriously Alfie Allen has continued to knock his role out of the park, I think he's been fantastic, why have Hollywood not been knocking his door yet? Brienne and Pod come to the rescue and glad to see Pod has been paying attention to Brienne's sword fighting lessons! Great stuff and gives us old Stark loyalists some hope, are the tides finally starting to turn? I've seen a few people moan online about Sansa not knowing the protocol of what to say when accepting a knight into your service, what is it with this I must moan about every little thing mentality, made perfect sense to me, a) she was cold, wet and frightened b) has she ever done this before? no she hasn't, move on!
Cersei and Jamie, both fantastic actors who I love, but for me the scene was a bit stale, it's sort of Joffrey's death part II. Yeah fuck everyone, together we are great....
High Sparrow and Margery, is she going to confess? I can't see how else she's going to get out of there and she needs to get out as she can't do anyhing from a cell! Her only crime was lying at the trial claiming she didn't know about Loras and his Sword swallowing techniques 😉 that's fairly minor compared to Cersei.
Sand Snakes/Dorne... I choose to still pretend this hasn't happened, there's nothing to see here as far as I'm concerned. This arc bored the tits off me in the books and well I have tbh it's been even worse on the show for me personally, I feel I would have been happier if we had went down the route of Doran reading the note about Myrcella and executed the Sand Snakes for it and moved on.
Tyrion and Varys go walk about in Mereen, as always the scenes between these two are fantastic and I love anything that involves the two of them and their banter 🙂 Whoops Danerys has lost her fleet of ships.
Jorah the Explorer and Daario continue their search for Danerys, Jorah finds that ring that was dropped in the final of last season, I've heard that Gollum plans to hire him...
Poor blind Arya, it looks like her 'training' is continuing and I feel she's going to be in a very dark place for the next few episodes at least!
We return to Castle Black with Alliser trying to persuade Davos and co to come out and play, we can all be friends, I'm not convinced there's an awful lot of crossbows pointing at the door! Again from scanning the yard this is far from all the brothers from the mess hall earlier some clearly still aren't buying into the Team Thorne ideas. A fantastic scene with some great lines, from Davos and his mutton to "It's a sad fucking statement if Dolorous Edd is our only chance
We end the episode with Melisandre, she's clearly at an all time low, we finally see the glamour of the necklace removed and thousands of viewers trying to remove an entry from their wank banks!
All in all I think as first episodes go this was a particularly strong one. Perhaps only beaten be S01Ep01 and S04Ep01. With the mass fears from many that things would go downhill when we ventured beyond the books I feel fairly confident things will be just fine without the source material. The episode pulled in 10.7 million viewers, which sets an all-time record for the show.
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