Game of Thrones Season 7 Episode 5: Six things we learned in Eastwatch
In an increasingly unpredictable world, one thing is remarkably consistent – Game of Thrones. The show, which only seems to get better with each episode, should've plateaued with Spoils of War. After all, what tops dragons in battle?
However, while the epic scale of action in episode four was undoubtedly appealing, episode five – Eastwatch – is a great reminder that Game of Thrones is so much more than just that. With wit, cunning, and unpredictability, the episode primes the show for a thrilling finish, with the fate of Westeros truly hanging in the balance.
While Game of Thrones usually lets its viewers stew on cliffhangers for ages before resolving them, Eastwatch does none of that. Instead, it's a complete fan-pleaser in the way it goes about its business. Beginning exactly where episode four left off, Eastwatch resumes the season with Jaime and Bronn.
While the two have survived their dragon-induced swim, Jaime's confidence seems to have drowned. Bronn's swagger though, seems impervious to trysts with death. But even as the two dry themselves off, the fate of their surviving soldiers is less than certain.
Across the river, Daenerys offers the surviving Lannister forces her favourite option – bend the knee. While most agree, persuaded ably by the threat of incineration, Dany exhibits shades of the Mad King as she burns two important characters alive to convince the remaining holdouts to pledge fealty.
This begs the question, just what will it take for Cersei to defeat Dany now? After all, Jaime repeatedly makes it clear that the Dothraki can defeat any Westerosi army. Will Dany be her own undoing? It certainly seems more likely than any external factor. While her followers like her because she is just, her new bloodthirsty avatar might put followers and allies off.
A song of ice and fire?
That isn't Dany's only fiery tendency though, as there's still some smouldering tension between Jon and Dany. While Jon still refuses to bend the knee, cracks are finally appearing in both their poker faces. As Jon prepares to leave Dragonstone, a move hastened by a letter from Bran, Dany seems almost affectionate towards him.
However, Jon does face some unexpected competition – Ser Jorah Mormont. Fully cured, courtesy of Sam, Jorah's reunion with Dany seems less than platonic. This, even as Jon watches on. These Northern men, eh Dany?
Season 7 has been a season of reunions, and so it has proven again in Eastwatch. Not only do we see the reunion of Jaime and Tyrion, we're also given the Davos-Gendry reunion we've waited so long for. As Tyrion and Jaime discuss a potential parlay, Davos finds Gendry working as a weapons smith at King's Landing. Gendry, last seen in season 3, is better than ever. Brash and quick-witted much like his father, he also wields a war hammer now.
His meeting with Jon, done in the style of Robert and Ned's meeting at Winterfell in the show's first ever episode, was also a delight. While fans were uncertain what plans the show runners had for Gendry, Eastwatch's developments make it clear that Gendry will be vital. Also, Ser Davos is quickly becoming our favourite character.
Sam has probably read more books in season 7 than he has in his entire life. However, despite this, all the major clues that have been found through books have been through Gilly. First, we had the location of the dragon glass, and this time, it's Jon's true parentage. While we all know who Jon's parents are through Bran's visions, this is the most concrete proof yet. Further, it's now proven that Jon's not even a bastard! In fact, Dany may soon be the one bending the knee.
However, Sam and Gilly seem to be the only two who are learning anything in the Citadel. The maesters, supposedly the smartest men in all of Westeros, are being idiotic as per usual. Presented with even more warnings about White Walkers, this time courtesy of a raven from Bran, the maesters still show no sense of curiosity. Their refusal to see what's right in front of them finally gets to Sam, causing him to leave.
Will the maesters finally come around before it's too late? Let's hope so.
Littlefinger, big schemer
Lord Baelish, seemingly on the ropes, has put into motion his final plan. With the Starks seemingly united in the last episode, Baelish seizes on one of the story's more obscure details to drive them apart. Will his plan succeed? Probably not. But it still establishes Baelish as one of the game's most astute players, a true master of deceit and deception.
More incest babies?
After his tryst with dragons, and his reunion with Tyrion, all that was left was for Jaime to turn on Cersei. However, in an absolute shocker, Cersei has managed to string Jaime on yet again. The show's reigning queen claims she's pregnant, with Jaime the obvious father.
Even as we're unsure whether Cersei's just manipulating Jaime or is actually pregnant, Jaime looks set to be Cersei's fool a while longer. Why, Jaime? Why?