‘Game of Thrones’ Season 8: Episode 4: What We Learned from, ‘The Last of the Starks’

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We have stepped over the half-way point now in the final Season of Game of Thrones. There is no turning back now. This episode contained so much story, so many important events, both personal and political that it’s hard to tell it all. Nonetheless, since that is the job, we will plow ahead and discuss what we learned from: The Last of the Starks.

The Aftermath:

1) The funeral was a sad affair with each of the fallen main characters given their proper send off. Lyanna Mormont, Edd, Ser Beric, and Theon, who Sansa leaves her Stark pen. He dies a Stark in her eyes. Denaerys bids farewell to Ser Jorah, whispering something in his ear that we don’t get to hear. Perhaps she told him if she should not survive this, she will look him up in the great beyond. Then they can have the kind of relationship they were denied in life. I have no idea, but it sounds poetic and just the kind of thing Jorah would have liked to have heard. Jon gave his speech (liberally plagerizing the Eulogy of the Night’s Watch) but only Sam would probably know.

2) Jon might not be Ned Stark’s son but he is sure acting like him. He was confronted with an opportunity to basically go back to how things were before with Denaerys. Continue to support her claim for the Throne and keep their relationship intact. But Jon, being Jon, feels the need to tell Sansa and Arya about his parentage. His need for truth and honor is going to get his ass killed. (More on this in a bit)

The Hookups…or Not:

3) When you’re heartbroken, the LAST person you want to share that with is The Hound. So in celebration of their victory over the Night King, the Lords and Ladies of the North are partaking in a bit of revelry. The drink flows, the stories are exaggerated and the relief of surviving the battle is apparent.  However, elsewhere in the hall, a Tyrion drinking game from the past re-emerges. Tyrion, Jaime, and Ser Brianne are the main participants. It is all fun and games until the subject of Brienne’s virginity comes up. That is when she excuses herself to the Lady Knight’s room. Tormond, full of drink and lust, stumbles over and wants Brienne to be his “date” for the night. She leaves while Jaime and Tyrion stop Tormond from following by using the weapons at their disposal, more wine. Jaime soon leaves the room. Tormond knows what’s up. So who does he go to for comfort? Sandor Clegane. He whose main advice for anyone is “Fuck Off!” Fortunately, his sadness is short. A local girl tells him she is not afraid of being with a Wildling. Tormond went to find out.

4) So Jaime followed Brienne to her room and found her with her armor already stripped off. She had the room’s fire blazing to add to the temperature of the room and their own desires. This was a moment fans have been waiting for but, didn’t it seem almost awkward and unsettling? Of course, since this was Brienne’s first time, that might have been natural, but it certainly wasn’t Jaime’s. They left most of the scene to the audiences imagination, probably to the fans of Jaime and Brienne’s disappointment. This moment made Jaime’s actions at the end all the more painful.

5) Poor Gendry, One minute you’re up and the next minute your down. In a surprise move, Denaerys calls out Gendry and asks about his parentage as the Bastard Son of Robert Baratheon. She reminds him of the grievances her family has with Robert as the “Usurper.” She then tells him that in spite of that, she is naming him the Lord of Storm’s End and giving him his Baratheon name. Well THAT was unexpected. So you’re named the Lord of Storm’s End, and made an official Baratheon. What to do, what to do? For Gendry, the next step is clear. After one night in bed, you decide to share your newfound nobility and title with Arya with a proposal of marriage. It just proves that Gendry didn’t know Arya very well at all. As much as Arya likes Gendry, she has said many times, she is not a Lady. Being a Lady of a Castle is “not her.” Not when there are still people to kill.

To Tell or Not to tell:

6) Getting back to Dany and Jon: Dany asked, no begged Jon to not tell anyone about his true parentage. Being a true Targaryen, she didn’t care that he was related to her. She loved him and wished it was back to the way it was before. Her main fear was that she didn’t want anyone suggesting that HE should be the rightful King. It didn’t matter if he wanted the job or not. She saw the way others looked at Jon. He would be their choice over Dany, especially in the North. Jon assured her he wanted nothing of the Throne. She was his Queen and he would support her, but he needed to tell his family. Why Jon? Of course I’m still not sure why Bran felt the need to tell Jon in the first place. I’m sure that will be disclosed, but they only have two shows left to do it. As for Denaerys, her fears were proven to be correct.

7) The three fastest ways to spread information: (Old Joke) Telephone, Telegraph, Tell Sansa. And then tell Tyrion. So Jon tells Dany he MUST tell Arya and Sansa about his parentage in spite of Dany’s misgivings. The “Starks” gather together at the Heartwood. Sansa and Arya tell him about their concerns with Denaerys and Arya agrees with Jon that they needed Denaerys and her Dragons in the battle, much to Sansa’s consternation. Both of his “sisters” reminded Jon that he is a Stark. Arya especially made it clear that he is her brother. Not her half-brother, not her “Bastard Brother,” but her BROTHER and she loves him. This made Jon feel even more the need to tell them. But before he did, he made Sansa and Arya SWEAR that they would not tell anyone else. He refused to tell them until they did. They both gave their word and Jon, in perhaps a way to claim that HE didn’t tell them when he next talked to Denaerys, asked Bran to tell them. That promise from Sansa lasted what seemed like minutes. She told Tyrion. This is the kind of thing that gives Jon trust issues with Sansa. Then Tyrion, who never promised not to tell anyone, told Varys. The first thing out of Varys mouth was plotting to put Jon on the Throne instead of Dany. All for the good of the realm, whatever THAT means. Varys changes horse in mid-stream way to much for my liking.

Hitting the Road:

7b) Pancho and Lefty are back on the road as the Hound and Arya ride toward Kings Landing and a possible confrontation with the Mountain and Cersei. The Hound tells Arya he is not likely to return this way again and she says she probably won’t be either.  Whether this has anything to do with the news of Jon’s parentage is unknown because we didn’t get to see it. C’Mon HBO. However, just so their clear, Arya doesn’t promise the Hound that she will not leave him to die again, much to his amusement. How touching.

8) Bronn is a cold calculating cutthroat, and the Lannister boys better make sure he gets his HighGarden. When Qyburn made Cersei’s request for Bronn to kill Jaime and Tyrion, I had my doubts he would follow through. The Bronn that approached the Lannister Boys didn’t seem to be playing around. Ask Tyrion’s nose. Only Tyrion’s offer of HighGarden appeased him for the moment. Their choices in this are clear. Win the battle for the Seven Kingdoms and give Bronn his bounty or kill him before he kills them. For you Bronn fans, hopefully it doesn’t come to that.

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Poor Planning leads to Bad results:

9) If there’s one thing that Daenerys advisors are seemingly bad at is anticipating what their opponent will do. They took their fleet and their remaining Dragons, one who was still injured, and flew them in close formation to a place (Dragonstone) that was a hop, skip, and a jump away from Kings Landing. Of COURSE there was a trap waiting. So now she is down one more Dragon and their fleet is in splinters.  They also decided to split their now dwindling forces. That ragtag group that faced Cersei down looked like the Mayberry Marching Band. No wonder she didn’t feel the need to surrender and Missandei paid the price. Poor Missandei of Naath, an innocent pawn in the battle between two ruthless women. No trip back to the beaches of Naath for Daenerys most trusted ear. She did give Daenerys her final advice for how to deal with the situation at hand. Dracarys! Burn the place to the ground. This is another ember in the fire for Daenerys Stormborn and for GreyWorm as well and all because her “advisors” didn’t plan this too well.

9b) Speaking of the Stand-off at Kings Landing… Why didn’t Euron question Cersei about how Tyrion knew about HIS Baby? He had just found out about the happy event but Tyrion already seemed to know. Why is that? Because it’s not YOUR baby, Euron you weak kneed fool.

10) Upon hearing about the trap Cersei sprung on Daenerys and her Dragons, Jaime also decided to head South back towards Kings Landing and his sister. His motives are not clear as Brienne tried to get him to stay. She tearfully appealed to the good man she believed him to be, but he told her about the things he had done for the love of Cersei. He was NOT a good man. He left her crying in her robe. (What happened to that rock that was Brienne? Jaime turned her into a hot mess. That’s so wrong.

Where we are:

So we are down to two episodes and a whole lot to resolve. We have the matter of the Seven Kingdoms to settle. The Hound vs. The Mountain to get going. Arya is lurking about. So many possibilities. Perhaps Euron is killed and Arya takes his face to get close to Cersei. Perhaps Jaime is killed and she does the same with Jaime’s face. This would kind of fulfill the prophesy of the younger sibling killing her. At least in appearance. Who will end up on the Throne? Will it be Jon like Sansa wants so he will leave the North alone and in her hands? Will it be Daenerys who has made no such promises to Sansa regarding the North. Perhaps Cersei who appears to be smarter than all of them will maintain her rule. So many question, so little time. Whatever the case, we will be here to discuss it with you here at GVNation.