RECAP | GAME OF THRONES season eight episode two - "A Knight Of The Seven Kingdoms"
There will be some fans who’ll complain about this episode of GAME OF THRONES and they’ll be the usual gripes: it was too slow, not enough action and no one died.
All that may be true, but in “Knights of Seven Kingdoms” we see the main players make peace with the world around them on the eve of battle.
It begins with Jaime’s confrontation with Daenerys. He’s arrived knowing Cersei has double-crossed them all. And you can count on his one good hand how many people might have a problem with his appearance at Winterfell.
That includes Bran. But he says nothing other than muttering ‘the things we do for love’. Still, Jaime argues his case: Cersei lied to him too. He made a promise to fight for the living and this is about survival, not loyalty.
It’s at this point; Brienne steps in and makes a direct appeal to Sansa, who is the real power in the North, not Daenerys.
“You vouch for him?”
“You would fight beside him?”
And without batting an eye, the Lady of Winterfell overrides the Mother of Dragons. No support for Dany from Jon, who avoids any meaningful eye contact.
Instead of taking it out of the Starks, Daenerys turns on Tyrion. Is he up to the job?
“Cersei still sits on the Throne. If you can’t help me take it back, I’ll find another Hand who can.”
It might be all bluster given that later she wants Tyrion to hide in the crypts during the battle. She values his ‘brain’ not his sword arm.
Meanwhile at the forge, Gendry has yet to get around to the weapon Arya wants, probably to keep her out of the fray. Poor boy doesn’t realise who or what she is.
There’s some more flirting (seriously, get a room) before Arya reveals a little of her inner assassin and convinces Gendry to get cracking.
“If you want to know what they’re like… Death. That’s what they’re like.”
“I know death. He’s got many faces. I look forward to seeing this one”
In the God’s Wood, Bran explains to Jaime why he didn’t spill the beans earlier. The way he sees it, Jaime is changed for the better and if he hadn’t been left a cripple, perhaps he wouldn’t have discovered his other self.
From there, Jaime next encounters Tyrion where we learn:
Cersei really is pregnant
Tyrion realises he underestimated her as an opponent
Tyrion knows he’s a marked man but dying in battle may spare him being murdered by Cersei.
It’s also obvious that Jaime really is a changed man when he drops the bravado and offers Brienne the one thing she’s yearned for since her time with Renly Baratheon; acceptance.
“I’m not the fighter I used to be and I would be honoured to serve under your command. If you’ll have me.”
While the King Slayer shows he’s a nice guy, it’s Ser Davos who is the peacemaker, nudging Daenerys to come to terms with Sansa.
The dynamics between the two women is interesting and it’s Sansa, who holds the upper hand. Her time with Cersei, Littlefinger and the Boltons has made her more adept at playing the Game of Thrones.
Where Dany bangs on about being the rightful heir of the Iron Throne, she hasn’t thought beyond that one goal. Sansa wants to know her plans for the North.
“What about the North? It was taken from us. We took it back and we said we’d never bow to anyone else again. What about the North?”
Sansa’s position of power is further demonstrated by the arrival of Theon, who takes a knee for Daenerys, but pledges his fealty to Sansa. They survived Ramsay Bolton and Dany cannot begin to understand that bond.
Meanwhile, battle preparations pick up with the arrival of Tormund, Dondarrion and the surviving Brothers of the Night’s Watch, who warn the dead will soon be on their doorstep.
The problem is, while they have the weapons they don’t have a clue how to beat the Night King. That’s until Bran steps in and offers himself as ‘bait’.
“He’ll come for me. He’s tried before many times and with many three-eyed ravens. He wants to erase this world and I’m its memory.”
So, Bran will try to lure the Night King out into the open and Theon will be by his side; repaying the debt owed when he betrayed the Starks and took Winterfell.
As they mark time ‘till battle, the warriors gather and share stories. Prompted by Tormund’s disbelief that Brienne isn’t recognised as a ‘knight’, Jaime breaks with tradition and chivalric convention.
“Any knight can make another knight. I’ll prove it. Arise, Brienne of Tarth. A Knight of Seven Kingdoms”.
With his road to redemption complete, my money is on Jaime Lannister to be one of the first to be killed off.
Meanwhile at the forge, Gendry reveals to Arya that he is the bastard son of Robert Baratheon. She reveals she wants to sex before she dies. And he obliges.
Ahh, young love. I hope it can outlast the coming battle.
In the crypt, Jon finally drops a family bombshell on Dany, revealing the relationship between Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen.
“He loved her. They married in secret. After Rhaegar fell at the Trident, she had a son….
The last thing she did as she bled to death on her birthing bed was give the boy to Ned Stark to raise as his bastard. My name is Aegon Targaryen.”
Not surprisingly, she doesn’t believe him. And it’s not the family ties that bother her, but the realisation that Jon has a better claim to the Iron Throne.
But before they can take things any further, the horn sounds and the battle is upon them.
How’s that for a cliff hanger?