Season: 8 / Episode: 4, “The Last of The Starks” / HBO
***Spoilers be sexing you one night and then leaving in the middle of the night to go see their day one instead. Check the rest of our Thrones recaps here.***
Sad Faces and Bed Sheets
Maaaaaaan, listen. They won the “Great War,” but this shit don’t feel triumphant from jump. This is straight PTSD. Everybody still shell shocked. Well, except for Bran, who looks like he just had a super satisfactory continental breakfast at a Comfort Inn and Suites this morning.
They doing the mass burial and burning these dudes on some big ass hearths. Jon “Don’t Call Me By My Government Name” Snow gives a tribute before they send the fallen off to the next world. How do these fire burials work? Were folks allowed to get a single occupancy before they got sent to the next world, cuz some of them joints looked mad crowded, like they hit the shared ride option on Lyft or some shit.
Ayebody eating in the Great Hall, and this shit somber af. Also, they said some Dothraki and Unsullied survived, but I don’t see none of them eating in the Great Hall, nahmean. I dunno fam, feel like some Water for Chocolate shit to me. Gendry stressed the fuck out cuz all the speaking line folks up in here, but he doesn’t see Arya anywhere. He asks the Clegane (but why though), and dude is like, bruh, we just burned half our army and you out here thinking with your dick. For the record, just about everyone is trying to get laid down tonight. AND WHY WOULDN’T YOU?!?! You just survived the apocalypse. There was almost a future without a lot of things, including fucking, so like, celebrate that win.
Bow to Our New Lord
Gendry, who has clearly been hit by that Thunderbolt from Arya, gets up to look for her when the queen calls him out. And yo, when Manifest Daenerys calls your name, the whole mutthafuckin’ hall stops. She just straight up outs dude as Robert Baratheon’s bastard. Dany runs down that all the Baratheon’s are dead and that Storm’s End currently doesn’t have a lord. Dany really out here pushing in the primaries, ain’t she? She chops the bastard of Gendry’s name, naturalizes him as a Baratheon and makes him Lord of Storm’s End. And just like that, the Gendry glow up is complete. My dude went from almost being drowned in the harbor for being Robert’s bastard, to getting sexed up by Mary Magdalene’s homegirl with leeches on his body, to now being Lord of a Great House…or whatever’s left of it.
The whole hall gives it up for Gendry and I guess we should credit Dany with making the party hype cuz it was straight up a wake before this. Tyrion makes note that it was as smart move and Dany really patted herself on the back with that shit. She tryin’ yo. Really out here buying these votes. I’m guessing she gonna appear on the Breakfast Club next and share stories about how she used to smoke back in college.
Also, Sansa look at her like, what is this heifer up to?
Ser Davos and Tyrion chopping it up, talking about how Melissandre came to the booth and dropped her featured verse on the album and then dipped the fuck out. Davos going on about how the Lord of Light just be doing cameos and shit but don’t ever stay around to clean up the dishes after the party. Tyrion makes note that thinking about that won’t make him any happier to which Davos responds I’m not trying to be happy. In that moment, every writer heard Davos and was like, same.
Tyrion goes over to spread his good cheer with Bran. They talkin’ about Bran’s wheelchair and how Bran just rocking some shit that the Targaryans had for someone hundreds of years ago. Tyrion lightweight tried to bait Three-Eyed Bran saying he will be the Lord of Winterfell but realizes he doesn’t want that shit cuz he don’t want anything anymore. Tyrion is like, jealous. Seriously though, Bran almost looked sad af in this moment. It reminded me of the Lil Rick episode of Rick and Morty, like Bran is trapped in the Three-Eyed Raven and just trying to cry out for help. He drops that, “don’t envy me. I mostly live in the past.” And since Davos just gave folks a relatable line, I guess it’s only fair the conservatives get one too.
Get this Party Started Right Now
Also, now, it’s a fuckin’ party. You know when Tormund start challenging people to drinking contests, this shit bout to get lit. He makes a toast to the Dragon Queen, who then makes a toast to Arya Stark, the hero of the war. You know she basically just trying to checkboxes now. In her head she’s like, “shout out Arya Stark, put a check next to the North.”
Bruh, the Lannister Bros, Podrick Grayson, and Brienne all playing Truth or Drink. Fam, Brienne smiles more in this scene than in all of her other appearances combined.
And then shit gets tense with Daenerys. That awkward moment when you realize your people would rather vote for your VP than you. Tormund start hyping up Not-Jon about him riding a dragon. Which, ok, let’s be real, if you once rode a dragon during battle, YOU WANT YOUR BOYS GASSING YOU UP ABOUT THAT SHIT. Yo, you know my dude Jon, who the fuck you know out here ridin’ muthafuckin’ dragons! Tormund spittin’ that shit though. He’s like, who befriends an enemy, gets murdered for it, and comes back to keep fighting. He also says this while literally hitting Jon in his murder birthmark. Which then leads into, “He’s a madman or a fucking King.”
YIIIIIIIIIIIKES. Daenerys lookin’ at him like dude from Belly after Buns moved into town.
No Love for a Woman’s Work
Bruh. First off, Manifest Daenerys gotta be pissed cuz literally nobody loves her like this. Well, two people love her like this. But one of them she literally just put the torch to his dead body. The other is the one being called a king in real time. Also, the audacity that it was riding the dragon that jumped this moment off. She gotta be like, how you riding high on the fame after riding my muthafuckin’ dragon. Remember back in the DJ Clue era of mixtapes when everybody was becoming legends freestyling over the “All About the Benjamin’s” beat, but nobody actually wanted to listen to the original “All About the Benjamin’s” song? That’s what this shit gotta feel like for Dany right now. Shit is all bad for her right now. Her internal polling taking a nose dive.
And yo, I know Dany starting to show her true colors and people jumping off that shit like Uber’s stock, but props definitely need to be given to Emilia Clark who did her thing and looked fucking crushed during this scene. There’s fear of missing out, but then there’s fear of missing out when you are literally in the same room with everyone who’s enjoying themselves. Jeez.
Back over at Truth or Drink, things done got mad serious when Tyrion calls Brienne a virgin. Man, Podrick was all of us taking a drink on that shit. Brienne is like, yeah, I just came to have a good time, and I’m feeling attacked right now, so I’m gonna go.
But before she does, Tormund comes over tipsy off that Giant’s milk. My dude done survived some shit and is ready to take shit to the next level with Brienne…but yeah, Brienne never pressed start on that shit. He goes to follow her, and Jaime stands up like, yeah, this train car is full, maybe catch the next one pimp. Tormund lookin’ like the dude that been trying to dance with the same woman all night, but once he finally got close, she went up to the VIP followed by the prettiest dude in the club. Tyrion saw his pain and topped dude off. Also, make note that Podrick the Impaler getting some run tonight too.
Well, RIP to Tormund FemmeBane. It was good while it lasted, right? My dude is heartbroken that Brienne chose Jaime (which is eventually true, but not at the moment since Brienne just left and Jaime followed without being prompted, but sadly it’s all the same to Tormund). The question is, was all the Brienne shit in earnest, or is he now gonna stop liking all her Instagram posts moving forward. Dudes, I tell ya.
It also hilarious that everybody want to pour the heart out to Clegane who is literally the last person you need to be reaching out to right now. I’ll take Three-Eyed Bran giving me the “I’ve ascended these things you call feelings” indifference over Clegane literally telling everyone to fuck off. To his credit though, the two dudes that have pissed in his ear so far are one that loves the little girl that left him for dead, and one that loves the woman that Spartan kicked him off a cliff. So…I get it.
The Scene that Dropped the WHOLE BALL
Sansa, The Lady, sees sad ass Clegane drinking alone and comes over to talk to him. They start talking about how things used to be and how things are now. Listen, I know we all here cuz we wrapped up in this Thrones Endgame but like…this was not a good scene. Like, hard pass on this shit.
Clegane tells her that none of the shit with Ramsay or Little Finger would’ve happened if she had come with him when he first left King’s Landing. To which, Sansa states without Ramsay and Littlefinger, she would’ve stayed a Little Bird for the rest of her life.
The even did the slow zoom in on Sansa so that you knew this shit was serious.
Get the fuck outta here man. All hail the heroine’s journey where rape is a necessary evil. All praises due to abuse and assault just speed bumps on the way to being Lady of Winterfell. This could’ve been done so much better, yo. This could’ve really been a scene about being a survivor. It could’ve been about Sansa presiding over a land where the injustices she faced won’t be visited upon others. But nah, they really went with “what doesn’t kill me, only brutally assaults me for numerous seasons, makes me stronger.” I just want people to remember mess like this when they start praising the writers for how powerful the women on Thrones are. And I also want us to remember these were the same dudes that were going to write a show that heavily involved slavery.
ANYWAYS *Hard Eye Roll*
Murder and Marriage Proposals
Gendry out looking for Arya outside where all the poor folks are celebrating. Arya is celebrating by getting her Kate Bishop on and building that murder muscle memory. Gendry is like, I got some great news, and you the only person I want to share it with. Arya is legit excited for him, but you know Gendry ain’t done. My dude is like, I know we have had intimacy exactly once before we thought we were all going to die, so please marry me and become Lady of Storm’s End. So…Gendry is basically Drake.
Arya: Gendry, you’re adorable. You got me right the other night but…that’s not what that was. I’m here for a good time not a Storm’s End time, nahmean.
AND THEN WENT RIGHT BACK TO GETTING HER BOW OFF. That’s the part that fucked me up yo. She didn’t even walk off to leave Lord Gendry with his thoughts. She went right back to her murder prep fam. Arya the type to have you over for the night, then ask how you gettin’ home right after. I appreciate that Arya cares about Gendry, but she deadass would push him off the cliff to get the Soul Stone.
Driver Roll Up the Partition, Please
Brienne is out of her knight’s clothes and warming by the fire. Jaime at the door with that good Dornish wine and some slurred game for her. I don’t even know how to take this next part fam. Like, Jaime very clearly did the lightweight coercion move of, “I’m gonna come to your room and start undressing myself” with the added caveat of “I’m also drunk and working with one hand, so I might need assistance undressing myself.” I know a lot of people were happy about Jaime and Brienne laying it down (even if it was Endgame levels of fan service), but I’m at least happy it ended up where it ended up. Because Jaime was taking MAAAAAAD liberties to begin that shit before we knew Brienne was actually cool with it.
Also, it should be noted that while this is the first time Brienne has had sex, this is the first woman Jaime has been with who isn’t Cersei. That’s it, that’s the tweet.
Daenerys comes to holler at her nephew cuz hey, everybody else is making moves tonight. And let’s be clear, Dany ain’t come here to hang out with her love. She came to consolidate power and get these northern delegates. Which didn’t start well when Daenerys put the bow chicka wow wow on Not Jon and he remembers that’s he’s being tongued down by his Auntie D. And if you thought that was the most awkward moment…
Let’s be very clear about something. Dany ain’t bothered because she found out the supposed romantic love of her life is her brother’s son. She mad the people love him, and the same people think she smell like outside. She pleads with Not-Jon to keep this a secret and uses the logic that it will grow out of control. Isn’t that the trajectory for when you keep a big ass secret?!?! She says she wants it to be the way it used to be aka when there was no question you were my subject.
Maybe the past couple of elections have made us all political scientists, but we all know the best way to deal with his shit would be to get out in front of it. She really could’ve been like, so, look, crazy ass story, but this dude is like family and shit. But we gonna rule together, nahmean. It’s gonna be great, Targaryan/Targaryan 2020. But noooooooooooooope. That’s not what she doin’. She for real on some hide your identity to a dude that has lived with a fake identity his whole fucking life and found out the truth like 48 hours ago. I know I asked this a couple episodes back but…who still riding for Auntie D? It’s really hard to make a case for her these days. Either you die on your dragon’s back, or you live long enough to become the villain.
Battle Plans Getting Drawn Up
They in the war room plotting and realizing that they lost a lot of their army while Cersei been growing hers. Everybody wants caution, but Daenerys just want to go Dracarys all over the damn place. They convince her to starve the city out and let the people see that they Cersei is the enemy. Auntie D agrees to that, but then The Lady comes in like, aaaaaaand we need to pump the brakes and let our people rest. Also props to Sansa for saying she gonna talk to the officers and get their estimates for how much rest is needed, cuz you know Auntie D ain’t soliciting feedback from Greyworm like that.
Well, that pisses Auntie D cuz she ain’t really trying to wait like that. The Lady and Auntie D going back and forth, but I love how Arya looking at Auntie D like, I will gut you right here on this game of Risk we got set up.
And then Not-Jon, desperate to prove his allegiance, is like, nah, we can march now, paying our debts like Lannisters and shit, let’s roll. After Dany gets done feeling herself talkin’ about uniting folks under the Rightful Queen, Arya cut off Not-Jon quick. Why the whole Stark crew up in Not-Jon’s business, lookin’ like the Firm album cover and shit.
They in the Godswood Where It All Goes Down (gotta say the whole thing like a Tribe Called Quest). Sansa and Arya are straight up like, nah, we don’t trust your girl. Like, seriously how many dudes been in this position where they bring a new bae home and the sisters are like, nah, something off with her. And like…weren’t they always right?
Arya meets Not-Jon halfway and is like yo, I respected the move Jon, I really did, but this is the part where we get off fam. She on that, we the last of the Starks. Ned, Katelyn, Tony, all them dudes dead. It’s just us now. Not-Jon bites down hard and is like, I’m not a Stark, I never was.
Bran sitting still, but on the inside you know he like, Why the Fuck you Lyyyyyin”
Arya: Nah, dead that bastard shit. You’re not my half-brother, you’re my brother.
Bran: *coughs* Cousin
Bran: Oh, sorry. Nothin, I can’t shake this cold.
And because Not-Jon is so very Not-Jon, that secret is eating him up. He look at Bran, and Bran is like, hey, this your world playboi, I’m just visiting. Do you, bruh. Not-Jon makes them both swear not to tell anyone, before he let’s Bran hit them with that Only Built for Targaryan Linx album.
Jaime and Tyrion chillin’, toasting to climbing mountains, when Ser Bronn of the Blackwater walks in. With the gotdamn crossbow. Maaaaan, listen. I mean, I think we knew Bronn wasn’t gonna merk these dudes on spec cuz he could’ve came in blasting, and they would’ve been dead in the middle of talking about Brienne’s new adventures.
In case y’all forgot, Bronn is only out here to secure his future Laura Loughlin my dude. If he thought Cersei was gonna win the war and be able to honor the deal, the Lannister boys would be slumped by the fire right now. Competing for a better deal, Tyrion promises Bronn Highgarden if they win the war. Then Bronn gives the best synopsis of America or how anyone rises to power. The shit wasn’t sweet in the beginning. Kill a few hundred, they make you lord. Kill a few thousand, they make you king. And then you grandsons fuck up what you built. Jeesh, talk about reading the room.
It’s not Personal, Just Business
Clegane starts out heading south solo, but of course, my dude can get no peace whatsoever cuz here come Slim Thor, slayer of Ice zombies, Arya. They both talkin’ about how they have some unfinished business. Sounds like Clegane gonna try and finish off his brother, and Arya is gunning for Cersei. May we wish both of them well on their professional endeavors.
Sansa watching the dragons as Tyrion rolls up on her. She still on that forget Dany tip. She also ain’t trying to hear anything Tyrion is saying. We finally get at what’s really bothering her and in addition messing with Dany, she also knows that Starks get killed, brutally, in King’s Landing. Even when they’re in power. Aaaaaaand, Sansa kept her promise to Not-Jon for like 12 minutes yo. Sansa basically left the Godswood Where It all Goes Down and immediately entered the group chat talkin’ about “I got that tea.”
Not-Jon getting ready to leave and runs into Tormund on the way out. Basically feels like the last time we’ll see Tormund Giantsbane, which is a shame. My dude taking his people back the North-North. Not-Jon is like, yeah, take Ghost with you.
I really wish Ghost could be like, well fuck you then, I didn’t want to stay with your punk ass anyway. Ghost got screwed over these last few seasons. Ghost gotta be like, oh, you out here riding dragons and now you ain’t got love for the hood no mo? I lost an ear for your zombie ass, man. Ghost needs a better agent, bruh. Thrones really messing up his money. And Not-Jon didn’t even go say goodbye before he left. I’m not even a dog-person really and I felt the coldness of that moment.
Fade to Black and a Dragon’s Fall
I’m still sore about Ghost, but I really do love the relationship between Not-Jon and Tormund. Even more so than Not-Jon and Sam to be honest. Who by the way bout to have an adopted son and a son on the way cuz he gave the middle finger to them vows along time ago.
Look, fam. LOOK. When Grey Worm and Missandei were standing on the boat together, and she reached for his hand, I thought:
Ok, if they show the genuine love of these two, then zoom out to show the whole fleet, music swells with some conquering music, then fades to black to close the episode, that would work, right? Like you get the intimacy staged within the larger context of they are going to war and that there’s a glint of hope in a very dreadful situation to come. But then, I heard Tyrion’s voice and the scene shifted, and I knew because we didn’t end right there, that episode was not going to end well.
They down in the ship discussing that TMZ article that had Not-Jon and Dany kissing on the front with headline “Keeping it All the Family?!” Tyrion tries to suggest the marriage and Varys hits him with, oh, they doin’ that up in Winterfell? Cuz last I checked, the North got some strict boundaries on that type of thing. So that’s a wash.
Varys is basically the audience in being like, fam, this ain’t gonna work out. Tyrion thinks they can reason through it, but we all know there’s at least one more war either during or after this war they gotta fight.
Daenerys is flying overhead with Drogon and Rhaegal who was listed as questionable with a high ankle sprain. It all seemed sweet until RHAEGAL CATCHES A FUCKIN’ STINGER TO THE CHEST. They shot your boy up like Fiddy. Rhaegal took that hard fall into the ocean and ain’t no Night King to bring him back. That dude dead dead.
Enter Cersei Stage Left
Courtesy of Euron’s fleet. They may have lost the Iron Islands, but they still out here ambushing Auntie D’s fleet. They taking aim at her and Drogon who get away…ya know after Auntie Dany rages out for a minute by flying right at them.
And with dragons to shoot at, they turn them joints boats. Shit was all bad my dudes. They getting lit up. Boats getting ripped up like newspapers that been left out in rain. They all gotta abandon ship and swim to shore. I mean…there didn’t seem to be a whole lot of shore in sight, but sure. Grey Worm, Tyrion, and others make it to the shore, but no Missandei, and it got Grey Worm ready to go Brad Pitt and the end of Seven.
Cersei appearance! She looking over her good works. A dragon is dead. Fleet all kinds of fucked up. Validates Euron’s existence, cuz men need that shit. She basically just checked everything off her to do list.
I might be going too deep in the weeds here, but I didn’t love the “so much for the Breaker of Chains” line with all the context. Breaker of Chains is one of the titles given to Daenerys because she freed the slaves moving across Esos (debate that in isolation how you will). Missandei was one of those slaves at one point. And this line is delivered while Missandei, the only Black woman on the show, is back in chains. I dunno fam. The lesson being, even when not trying, white supremacy ruins everything. Even what I think was just a throw away line seemed like a jab at Daenerys.
Make Peace and Housecoats
Varys trying to talk Auntie D out of doing something reckless, but she ain’t really trying to hear all that. Rhaegal is at the bottom of the sea, Missandie is a hostage, and it’s all bad. Tyrion makes a last ditch effort to make peace, and Auntie D agrees solely for the spectacle of it. Yo, this ain’t gonna get any better.
And Varys knows it. He out here discussing open treason with Tyrion. Varys knows she ain’t right to rule, and Tyrion keep trying to steer him back to Daenerys. Nah b. That die been cast. He is fully on the Jon Snow express at this point (though why they keep calling him that when it ain’t his name, I dunno). Varys basically leaves him with, ayo, you do what you have to do, but I got arrangements to make.
Back in Winterfell, happy, domesticated ass Jaime sees that Sansa and Brienne got some bad news. They drop that newsfeed on him, and Jaime is fucked up about it. Your boy trying to leave in the middle of the night on Brienne. She stops him and is like, you ain’t got to do this, but Jaime is like yo, I really like you and all, but you knew who I was when I got here. Also, I would go on, but I can’t do better than this tweet so, please enjoy:
My girl Brienne outside in a housecoat. I hate dick. That’s what dick does. It has you outside in the cold ass North in a housecoat asking a one-handed dude where he’s going.
— Auntie Rai of Castamere (@yay_itsrai) May 6, 2019
Business Meeting Starts at 8AM
It’s parlay time, and Daenerys got the executive branch outside the gates of King’s Landing. Cersei up there with Missandei front and center. Cersei’s shoulder pads look like the armor you get after your Skyrim character hits level 15 or some shit.
They send out Qyburn to negotiate with Tyrion, and this was a waste of everyone’s time. Tyrion is like surrender yada yada, and Qyburn is like, same, and I’ll raise you a yada yada. Tyrion sees that shit already and walks up to the gates to speak to Cersei directly.
Tyrion makes a last attempt to appeal to her humanity. But like, WHAT HUMANITY TYRION!?!? He says she’s not a monster but also, where is the proof. It wasn’t that long ago that Cersei had a whole building blown up with tons of innocent people inside, one of which was his son’s wife. Like, that just happened, yo. It’s not like Cersei did this back before Twitter or some shit. Anytime someone is like, but I’m rooting for Cersei, I’m like Rep Ted Lieu at Candace Owen’s hearing.
Cersei hears all of that and is like, so nah, actually. She tells Missandei that if she has any last words, now is the time. Missandei lets that Dracarys fly one time before the Mountain gives her the Ned Stark cut. Which, is pretty badass for last words. That’s basically High Valerian for “Bury Me a G and burn this shit to the ground.”
Yeah, listen, I’m pissed about Missandei dying, because Missandei was a good character played by a good actress. But like, I can’t get on board with the “this is offensive to kill the only Black woman on the show” narrative. It’s a lot more offensive that she was the only Black woman on the show. Thrones went from killing its protagonist in the first season to basically making its main characters safe from harm when Not-Jon came back to life. And we’ve watched a lot of not quite main characters die over the last couple of episodes. But now we’ll never get to see Chocolate City aka Naath after this is all over, and that’s the biggest tragedy.
So negotiations have failed, we down to one dragon, Auntie D got that Hisoka blood lust going, Varys about to switch sides, Missandei got too much taken off the top, Sansa taking her Eyrie and going home, and Clegane & Arya on twin suicide missions. Outside of ice zombies, things are as bad as they’ve ever been.