OnScreen Recap: Game of Thrones Stormborn
The following contains spoilers for season 7 episode 2 of Game of Thrones.
Much like the first episode, this second installment of the seventh season is full of information that further develops the plot.
In the Dragonstone war room, quips abound and past sins are drudged up. Dany shows a hint towards the Mad King when she threatens to burn Varys alive should he betray her. Melisandre appears and requests an audience. The red priests and priestesses believe in a prophetic leader reborn from fire that will be Azor Ahai reborn. Melisandre fervently believed that said leader was Stannis. Varys reminds Melisandre of Stannis’ failure openly. Melisandre and Missandei speak what many fans have theorized; that Daenerys and Jon Snow will both play a role in the Azor Ahai prophecy. Melisandre also brings the news that Jon Snow is King of the North. Tyrion speaks well of Jon’s character, so Dany sends a raven inviting Jon to Dragonstone.
In a later meeting, Yara recommends that they attack King’s Landing immediately. Ellaria Sand accuses Tyrion of cowardice, even though Tyrion has fought in battle and Ellaria murdered a young girl. Tyrion also doles out a plan of attack on both King’s Landing and Casterly Rock. In a private meeting Lady Olenna tells Dany to “be a dragon”. This advice appears to be genuinely empowering, but Olenna could very well be trying to fan the flames of the dragonfire within Daenerys for her own purposes.
The letter from Tyrion arrives in Winterfell. Sansa finally vouches for Tyrion, claiming that he is different from other Lannisters. Jon elects to travel to Dragonstone to forge an alliance with Daenerys. Even though Sansa continues to question him in public, Jon leaves the castle in her charge when he leaves for Dragonstone. The connection made between Tyrion and Jon during season one comes back into play and it will be nice to see these two meet again this season. In the crypts of Winterfell, Petyr proclaims his loyalty for the Starks as well as his love for Sansa, Jon responds to this by threatening him. Jon Snow is really a warrior, and it was great to see him show his prowess in order to protect the family he has left.
In a short but memorable scene, Ser Jorah is seen in his dark chambers writing a letter to Dany. Sam appears and attempts to treat Mormont’s greyscale disease. It is a visceral and gross medical horror scene, and viewers won’t look at pot pies in the same way for a while.
At King’s Landing, Cersei uses fear to try and persuade Lords of the Reach to unite against Daenerys. Samwell’s father Lord Tarly reminds Jaime of his fierce loyalty to House Tyrell. Viewers will be reminded that Lord Tarly treats his sweet son awfully. He appears to have a soft spot for Lady Olenna, whom he has known all his life. Resident mad scientist Qyburn has developed a weapon against the veritable reptilian air force, proving yet again to be a quietly vital player in the game.
Arya’s scenes serve to create some human and emotional moments within this episode. In the first of such scenes, Arya reunites with Hot Pie, who informs her that the Boltons are dead and her family once again holds power in Winterfell. This scene was softly powerful and Maisie Williams continues to do an exceptional job in her role as Arya Stark. In the second, absolutely heart-wrenching scene, Arya is discovered by a pack of wolves being lead by a huge Direwolf. That wolf is her Nymeria that saved her from Joffrey in season one. Arya asks her former housepet to come home with her to Winterfell, the wolf instead turns away from her, to which Arya responds, “That’s not you.” The viewer could interpret this as a parallel to a similar declaration Arya made to her father in the first season.
The final scenes take place on the seas we meet up with the Dornish as well as the Greyjoy fleet. The fleet is attacked by their uncle Euron Greyjoy. Euron fully becomes a nefarious figure by completely annihilating the ships in a terrifying show of brute strength. The cinematography mimics the heat of battle, making it an even more memorable scene. The Sand Snakes put up a decent fight but Nymeria and Obara are brutally killed by Euron. For some viewers, this act alone makes Euron somewhat of a hero, as Oberyn’s daughters were not popular amongst a good majority of fans. Ellaria and Yara are taken hostage. Theon Greyjoy reverts to Reek and abandons ship, leaving his queen and sister to Euron’s wrath. This whole scene was fantastic and established Euron and his crew as a formidable and villainous force to be reckoned with. Game of Thrones fans have not seen a naval battle since the second season, and this one was worth the wait.
It could be said there was an underlying theme about communication throughout this episode. Dany’s war council communicated their past grievances. Characters stood up for one another, communicating their trust to others. Sansa and Jon need to communicate with one another. Ravens brought new information which changed the course of the story. Missandei and Grey Worm communicated their feelings for one another. Cersei is spreading her propaganda to try to win allies. Euron communicated the best way he knows how.
All in all, this was another fantastic episode from Game of Thrones.