Welcome to the Q&A of Season Six, Episode Seven “The Broken Man” of GAME of THRONES. As always Earl and David have not read the books, but David has seen all the Blu-Ray extras, and since we have out-paced most of the book story-lines, we have added a third person to the roster, so please welcome Shauna to the Questionnaire! or should we call this our Game of Thrones Roundtable? Shauna has read the books, but promises to keep her fancy book-learnin to a minimum.
Earl: I would have to believe that Sansa was writing to Littlefinger. Jon believes that the time to attack is now, but his army of wildlings and small Northern houses are statistically much smaller than Ramsay’s men at Winterfell. However, Sansa knows that Littlefinger and the Knights of the Vale are nearby and ready to spring into action. While she may not want to bring Littlefinger into the fray, she realizes that she does need him if she’s going to accomplish the goal of bringing Winterfell back under Stark control.
David: I think she was writing to the Blackfish. She needs to know if he has men, and more importantly, experience. You put the Blackfish in charge of the Tullys and add that to what Sansa has, and then they are a credible threat to the Boltons. Think about it, who is leading the Stark army right now? Jon is the main guy, but he doesn’t have any experience in a seige. Davos doesn’t have any notable experence. This actually solves a lot of problems going forward. The Blackfish can walk out with his men and might even get Mr Sansa Stark 3.0 out of it? Now the Blackfish can take millitary control and Ramsey has problems. The only problem? The Blackfish might just be happy to die in his home.
Shauna: Sansa is obviously writing to Baelish to send the Knights of the Vale to her aid. What I am concerned with is what she promised him in order to get him to oblige. I think Sansa has grown exponentially due the circumstances she’s been thrown into the last few years but she is green compared to Baelish. She better be careful or she might become a pawn yet again. If Brienne was there, she would’ve talked her out of it, it also makes her lambasting of Baelish moot in a way.
Earl: There are at least two Broken Men in this episode and they are Sandor Clegane and Theon Greyjoy. Starting with Sandor, it was great to see that the Hound lives. I think it was a nice touch from the show runners to start with the Hound and with Ian McShane playing a Septon before the opening credits. Seeing the Hound in a beaten manner, but yet being urged on by McShane was good acting. A shame that someone like Ian McShane took such a small role (he allegedly is not a fan of the show) but the two men played well off of each other.
Theon is also beaten. Yara needs her brother, but deep inside Theon is still Reek. He hasn’t quite shook off the psychological abuse of it all but I think in time he’s going to find himself and help Yara in their quest to lure Daenerys to their side.
David: As usual there are quite a few. Theon is broken, but hopefully on the way back, The Hound is broken, and business is about to pick up on the Brotherhood without Boarders, and finally Jamie is broken. Jamie Lannister had a name and a particular set of skills that made him feared across Westeros. Now? He’s just a name and a title. Bronn even thinks the Blackfish could take him. That’s a blow to the ego- yet another blow that, lets be honest, has been beaten down this whole show.
Shauna: There’s clearly two in this episode- Theon and Sandor.
It was in great GoT fashion to name Sandor and not have him referred to as the Hound (Clegane Bowl in full swing??). He’s broken in the sense that he’s alive but for the first time not being used for the purpose he’s always been used for- to kill. It’s like instinct to him, it kind of rears its head when the Brotherhood roll up on the small folk (btw, when has the Brotherhood just slaughtered people? They follow the Robin Hood philosophy so this is way out of character, there has to be something else at play here). What is his purpose now? He wants to know, we want to know.
Poor Theon. What a dick move (no pun intended) for Yara to bring a neutered Theon to one of his former favorite places- a brothel. His physical scars echo his mental scars and he’s basically a frightened animal, not knowing who will hurt him next, including his sister. He’s completely broken but as Yara reminds him, he’s Ironborn, they don’t break that easily.
I am so glad, however, that someone has a plan! Who’s going to give Dany ships to get to Westeros? The Wonder Greyjoy siblings! What they will ask for in order to win back the Iron Islands, I await and see.
Earl: Margaery Tyrell is alive and well. She’s absolutely pretending and her note to Lady Olenna confirms that. In order to survive she has to play the convert and wait for the moment when the High Sparrow lets his guard down and become vulnerable. Who knows when that will be but it was smart of her to go to Lady Olenna and convince her to leave before something befalls her. At least now Lady Olenna can leave Kings Landing knowing that her granddaughter is still on her side.
David: She’s letting The Queen of Thorns know that she’s good. She wants her grandmother out of town and safe, because she can’t keep up the miriage in front of her. Margaery needs time to work on Tommen and plan to get her brother out. Lady Olenna is going to be a distraction, and to be honest, I’m not sure Margaery wants to be second guessed by her grandmother. Cersei is also starting to ally with Olenna, and Margaery knows that Cersei can be emotional and short sighted. That’s an ally you don’t need when you are playing the long game. Let’s also keep in mind that the High Sparrow wants Margaery to bend Olenna to the Faith. That’s not something Margaery needs on her plate.
Shauna: Oh Margaery, you’re back! Well you never left as we saw last night. I think that the High Sparrow was gunning for Margaery all along. Tommen is basically like a useless kitten at this point and no one listens to him at all, but Margaery, on the other hand, has the love of the people, the ear of the Queen of Thorns, she’s a pivotal get for the High Sparrow. I think Margaery knows this and is playing along for that very reason. This girl is no dummy. She’s no Cersei either, she sees the long game. Slipping her granny that rose reminds her that the Queen of Thorns has taught her well. I’m excited to see how this all plays out. A little foreshadowing from when Lady Olenna and Margaery are picking jewelry for her and Joffrey’s wedding, she says “I might just end up with a string of dead sparrow heads”
Earl: I think Cersei realizes what she has done but it was still good television to see Lady Olenna tell her off. Cersei empowered this monster and she has no real way to curb it. She’s going to fall back on brute strength and the power of hate, because it’s the only two cards she knows how to play, but she is very aware that everything that is going on in Kings Landing is because of her.
David: No. Cersei this season is swinging back and forth. I get the feeling her mindset is to get the Tyrells on her side, wipe out the Faith, and then everything is back to where she can use Jamie and Tommen to start wiping out people she doesn’t like. The Tyrells are a tool, nothing more. Maybe once Margaery has a baby, she can take that over. (I’m telling you, Margaery is Catherine the Great!)
Shauna: Cersei is really starting to feel the weight of her actions and it was great screen time to see Lady Olenna chew her out for her ridiculous mistakes. There wasn’t a single thing that Cersei could argue with what Lady Olenna said because they’re all true. She’s handed the city over to fanatical rule, her family isn’t being her anymore, Jaime is gone to Riverrun, and worst of all, her son is in the hands of the High Sparrow and out of her influence. I’m really curious to see how she will dig herself out of this one. Don’t think she should count on Jaime…
Earl: Jon and Sansa are Starks but the problem is that Jon is a bastard and Sansa was twice married off to houses the Northern Lords should hate. No fault of either one really, for there were circumstances beyond their control, but it does hurt their standings. I think Sansa expected that her Stark name was going to be enough to get the Lords to rally to her side and got a bit of a rude awakening but it was good to see her stand up to Lord Glover, after shirking away from Lyanna Mormont. The Lords of the North sacrificed a lot when they supported King Robb, only to see Robb make a few foolish blunders and the whole thing fall apart, and those who are not completely aligned to House Bolton don’t seem to want to go through it all again.
David: Everyone who wanted to get in a good fight and surrond themselves in glory have already marched off with Robb. That normally means there are a lot of second and third sons still at home and they are going to be needed to carry on the family name. With the Boltons only wanting fealty, thats a strong case against a bastard, a woman and a failed rebels former sea captain.
Shauna:Jon’s a bastard, Sansa is a Lannister/Bolton or whatever people think she is but in the eyes of the Northern Houses, they are not Starks. They don’t want to deal with the Starks anymore, too many of them died in Robb’s war and to the North, that house is done.
Earl: The North remembers betrayal. Some houses felt betrayed by Robb. He beheaded a Karstark, he married a foreigner after going back on his promise to marry a Frey, and worst of all his mother freed the Kingslayer. Robb was doing what he felt he had to but some houses saw that as betrayal. However, the Boltons have betrayed the North too in aligning with the Frey’s and Lannister’s and killing Robb, his wife, and mother. The North Remembers coin is two fold. Sansa in particular was hoping the North would remember the Boltons betrayal of her family, but some remember the betrayal her family had against other Lords. In the end it will be telling to see which side of the coin wins out.
David: They remember a thousand years of the Starks keeping them safe from the Wildlings, they remember the Starks leaving them alone and only needing men and supplies when honor demanded it. They remember the Starks being good and honorable men, in a free land. The problem is, in a hard land, you also remember who has power and strength, and Sansa doesn’t have that.
Shauna: This phrase has a duality. First the North remembers what the Lannisters, the Freys and the Boltons did to the Starks- first Ned, then Robb and Catelyn. The North also remembers how royally Robb ruined the legacy of the Stark name by breaking oaths and letting love cloud his head and eventually causing not only his death, but his wife’s, his mother’s and sadly his dire wolf. The North’s problems stem from the ripples of his actions and the actions of those around him. These houses don’t want to deal with that.
Earl: Considering how much I loved the scenes between the Septon and the Hound, I have to go with the Hound. He has found some salvation and a purpose. When the Brotherhood came through and slayed the Septon and his crew, the Hound took his axe in vengeance. His revenge could be against the Brotherhood. It could be against Kings Landing. Who knows but I’m waiting to see where he goes.
David: I’m going with Lady Olenna. She got to tell of Cersei once and for all, she knows that her daughter isn’t brainwashed and she raised her right, and she’s going home to wait to see what happens next, like we are all. If Cersei dies, she can dance on her grave. If Cersei wins, then she gets her grandson back, if the Sparrow wins, she can take her army and level the town, after watching it starve when she pulls the food. She can go to her grave knowing that she wiped out everyone responsible for ending House Tully.
Shauna: Can I say Lyanna Mormont? That little girl has more balls than some of the men on the show. She was clear, decisive and all around badass for a 10 year-old. Anyone named Lyanna takes no bullshit which only solidifies the theory that Lyanna Stark could not have been kidnapped, she simply wouldn’t have stood for that. She went willingly with Rhaegar Targaryen. Plain and simple. The story that we’re told makes no sense given the grit of Lyanna and as we saw, other Lyannas that follow.
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