Season: 8 / Episode: 1, “Winterfell” / HBO
***Spoilers be waiting at the door for your missing curfew ass to get home. Find more Game of Thrones recaps here***
Thank the Seven, we back and we back and we back! We ain’t had no new Thrones since August 2017. And tbh, not that much has changed. We still ain’t gotten shit from the Mueller Report. Beyoncé still sits on the Iron Throne IRL. The Walking Dead is still, somehow, making new TV content. Ain’t nothin’ changed but the dot on the range. But you ain’t here for the timehop, you here for this real rap raw, what had happened was recap on the Days of Our Thrones, amIright? Let’s get into it.
Back Again For the First Time
My dude running through snow, over creeks climbing trees and shit, and we know we in Winterfell; one cuz it looks cold as fuck and two cuz the first main we see is Arya, guest starring her smirk. Arya don’t look like the cat that ate the canary, Arya look like the cat that keeps a whole ass storage of canaries back at the crib to toy with later.
Also, very dope parallel with this nameless little dude climbing over shit to see the approaching army like the pilot episode when Bran was doing the same when King Robert came to town. Let’s hope he don’t walk in on incest and get the spartan kick out of a window too, cuz becoming the Three-Eyed Raven was best case scenario for Bran, and I’m pretty sure that title can only be held by one dude at a time. (Also, there was a Dany/Jon joke in there about walking in on incest, but I resisted. *please clap*)
Speaking of incest though (not sorry), here comes Daenerys Targaryen aka Daenerys Stormborn aka Thomas Jefferson of the Dothraki and Jon Snow aka Pomade Jesus aka Burberry of the North leading the army. Arya looks happy to see him but can’t summon the strength to say shit yet. Mostly because they in the middle of a whole ass regiment….and Clegane’s touched by fire ass. And Fine ass Gendry, he who pounds that steel (I’ll see myself out).
(Ok, I’m back) First Tyrion appearance and my dude is making fun of Varys for being um…trimmed. Varys points out that Tyrion is sensitive to jokes about him being a dwarf but still be shading Varys being an unwilling eunuch. Tyrion is like, uh, have you not heard of privilege, Varys. My god, read a book.
And Black people alert at less than 10 minutes into the season. Hurrah!
Listen, LISTEN! It took eight fuckin’ seasons, but we have the most true Black representation that Game of Thrones has ever done. Missandei and Grey Worm road into to town, and the White Winterfellians (which is everybody in Winterfell to be clear) looked at them like they didn’t know Black people existed. For those that don’t know, THIS IS EVERY FUCKING DAY IN MURICA. I think it’s pretty safe to say that Winterfell was a red state in 2016. Winterfell looking at them like their song just hit the country billboards or something…
Daenerys getting hard stares too, but I’m guessing that’s because she’s wearing white after Labor Day. Pomade Jesus tells her that he warned her, Northerners don’t like outsiders
or Black people. But then the Northerners jump when the dragons pull up! And…Daenerys smiles.
Look, I know some of ya’ll been here for a while, but we might need to come to the realization that Daenerys is like…not great. I mean, maybe she’s very happy to see her babies flying overhead or she’s very happy to see the townsfolk scared shitless when they were giving her hard stares a second ago. But really doe, riding for Dany might be like voting for Jill Stein right now. The buyer’s remorse may be swift and completely unsurprising.
Of course, the only two reactions that matter are Arya being like, “this the coolest shit I’ve ever fucking seen” and Sansa being like, “[deep sigh], Now I gotta deal with this shit.”
You Know When I Heard That? When I Was Back…Home
Jon finally gets a reunion with Bran and that shit goes about how you would expect. Jon grips up Bran tight and is like, Look at you, you’re a man! Bran looks at him like, “I’m sorry, did you have an appointment?”
I have no idea if I’m going to like this version of Bran or not by the end of the season, but right now he is my favourite with the u in the spelling, Idc Idc Idc. My dude done shut down all his emotional functions like Aya when she became the new Anti-Monitor on Green Lantern: The Animated Series. Somewhere in the crypts there’s a tether of Bran dancing his ass off, but this Bran resisting that shit like a muthafucka.
Gotta love how Sansa gives Pomade Jesus a hug and never breaks eye contact with Daenerys, and I live. My god, has this show done the impossible. Has this show made us all…Sansa stans? This feels like when they basically made Zuko the hero of The Last Airbender series. I’m really in my feelings about this shit.
Maaaaaan, listen. Daenerys tried yo. Gotta give her credit. She brought the fruit basket, took off her shoes at the door, agreed to have some tea, complimented Sansa on her lovely home, all that shit. The fuckin’ playbook. Sansa didn’t give a care. She looked Dany up and down like she was short (and to be clear, she is shorter than Sansa’s shot blockin’ ass). Like, I don’t know why I didn’t notice before, but Sansa is long, yo. Sansa look like she could give you 13 points and 6 boards and shoot about 42% from the arc.
Anyways, Sansa is like, mhm. I guess Winterfell is yours or whatevs. Dany looked at her like, “heaux, really?”
Then Bran jumps in like, “I really respect y’alls level of petty right now cuz ain’t nothing else good on Three-Eyed Netflix better than this drama, but we ain’t got time for this shit.”
Bran is like, just to recap for y’all viewers at home, you done lost a dragon, that dude is a zombie nuke now. That wall is all blue flame and puddles. And them dead muthafuckas is on their way.
Daenerys looked exposed as fuck. Sansa looking at her brother like, yeah, spit that shit. She enjoyed that reality check on Dany like she was a Smack URL battle.
And now there’s a board meeting in Winterfell, where the real violence happens. First up is Lord Umber, who’s like 9 years old. The average median age for a head of house in the North gotta be about 12. And also, his awkward ass summons highlights something…there’s too many muthafuckas to be pledging fealty to. Sansa, who been running Winterfell. Jon, who was once named King in the North (more of that in a minute). And Manifest Daenerys, who got here literally five minutes ago wearing Prada and an entitled ass grin. This shit is mad Cerberus and not all the heads gonna win out.
And then Jon says they need to send ravens to Castle Black and let the Night’s Watch know they can come to Winterfell for make their stand. LMAO, I hope Jon likes surprises, but dude takes that direction and ends it with Your Grace.
Then that shit, gets echoed by Lady Mormont, Your Grace. The inflection mad different. Lady Mormont out here writing ghazals, yo. Truth be told, I had about 3 things I absolutely needed from this premiere and a Lady Mormont solo was one of them. I be waiting for Lady Mormont to hop on the track like I be waiting for Raekwon’s verse on any Wu-Tang record. I swear, the XXL Northern Realm Freshman Class Cover this year was just a group shot of only Lady Mormont in 7 different poses.
Lady Mormont, Lyanna if you nasty, was not fucking around. Like, I could make jokes, but the real bars do the work for me:
You left Winterfell a king and came back…well, I don’t know what you are now. A Lord? Nothing at all?
THAT’S IT, THAT’S THE TWEET.
And then Tyrion gets up. Yo, we all love Tyrion, but this seemed ill advised. Like, the North already don’t like outsiders. It named a King and then that King bounced and bent the knee. And now, the very man that their previous lady, Catelyn Stark left Winterfell to pursue in connection with the crippling of her son is standing before Congress, making an argument? Look, the North got more reason for “Economic Anxiety” than Trump voters been claiming for years.
As an aside…what happened to Tyrion, yo? Like…he ain’t really been the same since he put a cross bolt through his Papa’s urethra. But…more on that later.
In the middle of that awkward Sarah Huckabee Sanders ass rambling, he says that they have brought the greatest army the world has ever known to Winterfell and Sansa is like, quick note on that, husband.
How we supposed to support this shit?
Sansa ain’t wrong about resources and because I’m digging her right now, we ain’t gonna talk about how her view is lightweight anti-immigration, but I digress. Her real aim is to take a shot at Daenerys by saying, we don’t really have room for you and all your furniture, so this shit ain’t permanent, nahmean.
Sansa: What do two full-grown dragons eat anyway?
Daenerys: Oh, nothin’.
Also, is this the Side-Eye playoffs? Cuz we don’t get this level of side-eye in the regular season. Cats out here trying to make it to the next round with straight up glances.
Till Death Or A King’s Death Do Us Part
Gendry overseeing the Dragon Glass production while Tyrion looks on. He approaches Sansa, and it’s been so lonnnnnng. I was actually looking forward to this reunion, but it seems Sansa was not. Tyrion led this shit off:
Tyrion: Lady of Winterfell, has a nice ring to it
Sansa: So does Hand of the Queen. Depending on the Queen, I guess.
Just so we’re clear, Sansa gonna be relentless this season. She ain’t taking her foot off the neck, yo. Don’t matter who she talking to. Don’t matter if it’s in the Queen’s presence or not, she letting everybody know she is not with the shits. This is the definition of Keep that same energy.
She apologizes for leaving Tyrion with the bag in King’s Landing after Joffrey drank that purple drank, which is like saying sorry for stabbing a muthafucka and then planting the knife in your coat while you slept.
They finally get around to Cersei supposedly marching up north to aid with the fight against the White Walkers and Sansa is like, fam. What even are you any more? Believing Cersei is going to do something that doesn’t solely benefit her is like believing Mitch McConnell has the whole country’s best interest. Sansa leaves him with, “I used to think you were the cleverest man life.” Send Tweet. That’s it, then the smooth ass walk off. It also feels like this is the first time Tyrion might truly believe that Cersei, fuckin’ Cersei, might have lied to him. Good gawd.
Also, Three-Eyed Bran watching the whole shit like, “I knew she was gonna say that.” Again, I don’t know how much of this Bran I can take, but it’s giving me life right now.
Jon visiting the Weirwood tree, and Arya snuck up on dude without making a sound. It’s clear that Arya maxes out her stealth rating on RPGs first before she does anything else.
Reunion is great, definitely what Jon was hoping he would get from Bran if Bran wasn’t a hollow soothsayer now. Jon is also happy to see that Arya still got Needle.
Jon: Have you ever used it?
Arya: Bruh. I have….killed…so many people…it’s been pretty dope.
Arya been on a whole ass side mission called “Stick them with the pointy end” for like three seasons now. Which also articulates that Jon Snow, sigh, still knows nothing. It’s a dope way of showing how everyone knows shit about him, but he’s still so disconnected from Winterfell. What happened to Bran, how Sansa leveled up, that Arya is a fucking monster now. Northerners don’t like outsiders
or Black people and Jon has slowly made himself one.
The real bars were Jon thinking he knows anything about how Winterfell runs now. He’s like, yo, I could’ve used you in the room where it happens when Sansa wasn’t trying to hear me. Arya is like, yeah, I don’t know if you really wanted me there, fam. That might not have worked out better for you. Jon is shocked that Arya of all people is defending Sansa, and Arya is like, yeah, that shit still say Stark on the back of the jersey so…
Arya: *Hugs Jon*, Sure Jan.
And You Thought Things Were Fucked Up In The North…
We finally make it to King’s Landing. Qyburn comes to tell the Queen that the Dead have broken through the wall and Cersei gives the subdued fist pump like she just sank a birdie from 20 feet out.
Your girl is legit rooting for the apocalypse to happen, and I just can’t.
Also, here come these smelly ass Greyjoys. In case you were wondering if anything changed in the last year and a half, Euron is still the worst. He got Yara imprisoned on his ship.
Le sigh, pardon my heteronormativity, but I don’t get it with Euron, fam. My dude is kind of the worst Y chromosome, period. His facial hair looks like rust. He gotta smell like the fish your mom told you to put in the freezer, but your ass forgot cuz your friend from up the street asked if you could go ride bikes.
My dude still talking his way into the Queen’s chambers. WE AIN’T EVEN GOT THE ELEPHANTS WE WAS SUPPOSED TO HAVE! Remember when folks said carry yourself with the confidence of a mediocre white man? Well, that term has a title now, it’s called Euron.
Also, Euron talks shit, gives middling results, and beds the queen. Bronn protected Tyrion, trained one handed Jaime, was named a Knight after his heroics of Blackwater and SHOT A FUCKING DRAGON, and he gotta work just to get some love at a brothel. The world, my friends, really ain’t fair. Right when dude finally gets to his destination, that shit gets interrupted by Qyburn summoning him.
Also, Qyburn shoves off an advance from one of the women and says:
Poor girl. The Pox will take her within the year.
Qyburn basically comes to Bronn to say your boy been commissioned to kill the Lannister brothers. Bronn was all of us:
That fucking family.
And you know what, Bronn took that fucking crossbow from Qyburn cuz all my dude really ever wanted was to secure the bag and this my friends…is the bag.
I don’t have much for the post coitus Queen/Euron talk except that I kind of threw up in my mouth when he said he was going to put a prince in her belly. If that happens, put me in the belly of a spaceship. I want no more of that world.
Shit starts poppin’ off on Euron’s ship while he was…deposed. Theon Don’t Call Me Reek BAAAAACK. He and a team come and kill the guards to rescue Yara, the true Queen of the Iron Isles. She’s excited about going home, especially because she thinks that Pyke will serve as a good retreat spot. ALSO, WHERE THE DEAD CAN’T GO. Not a terrible idea.
But Yara knows her brother, and she know my dude wants to go back to that camp up North. I mean, it is literally the only life he really knows. She sends him back with her blessing.
Amusement Parks In A Time Of War
Varys, Tyrion, and Davos chopping it up, talking about the future and shit. Davos start reading Jon’s resume and talking about he got all them Northern electoral votes (apparently Davos wasn’t at the judiciary committee hearing). He trying to arrange a marriage between Daenerys and Jon. I mean, this is totally predictable, been going for a couple seasons now…and still gross.
Varys says that they overstating their influence as they just a bunch of lonely old men. Tyrion pushes back on the old part, but ain’t no disputing they all lonely af.
Dany and Pomade Jesus walking the grounds and Dany is like, your sister be looking at me like she trying to start something. I mean, correct? But also, the better question is, who does like Daenerys right now? Everybody looking at her like, It must be nice, it must be niiiiice…to have Drogon on your side.
In the middle of Dany getting all of her entitlement on, she learns that the dragons are barely eating.
They go to check this shit out and these muthafuckas are pushing around the lamb bones like kids that don’t want to eat their peas and shit. Jon asked what’s wrong and Dany is like, “they don’t like the north.”
Nah fam, these dudes are grieving. Or did we forget that their brother got speared like a gotdamn kabob by Night King aka Tom Brady on a Fade route? And then, the moment (some of y’all) been waiting for. Jon finally gets to ride Rhaegal. My observations from this are: 1) if you were curious where your subscription to HBO dollars were going, it was this. The dragons do look fucking great and even much better from that Neverending Story scene from a couple seasons back when Daenerys flew for the first time.
2) Jon just be doing shit man. You tell Jon to hop on one leg, them calf muscles getting a workout. Like, we prepping for war and we not even gonna do baby steps to riding a fucking dragon? Like if Rhaegal tilts a few degrees to the left and Pomade Jesus fell into a ravine, what the North gonna do now? And Melissandre ain’t around to bring him back so…
They find a waterfall to chill at after the dragon tour of the north, and Dany is clearly turned on. Like…ok, sis, we get it. Dude is fine. He just rode one of your dragons (giggity), and the North is really quite beautiful if you can ignore the racism (which we all know she can).
But also…the dragons still ain’t eating. That sounds like a problem. Also, it’s almost cute that Drogon is mad protective of Dany…until you remember that Dany and Jon might bump into each at the family reunion. Then…it’s not really cute at all.
Ladies Of Winterfell, Running Winterfell
Gendry is overseeing the dragon glass production while Clegane is giving him shit. And then Arya (silently) steps in like, I need you to ease up bruh. Clegane is like, yo, you left me to die and Arya is like technically, I took your chain first, then I left you to die. Besides the obvious that Clegane can’t go attacking a Lady of Winterfell in fucking Winterfell, THE ARTIST FORMERLY KNOWN AS THE HOUND DON’T WANT THAT SMOKE. Arya is the Bastdamn chimney these days, yo. That woman that almost killed Clegane’s ass, the one that is literally three times the size of Arya, sparred her to a standstill. Clegane gotta just walk away yo.
The Arya/Gendry meet up worked out well. Gendry keep throwing it back at her that she’s a highborn lady and Arya is like, watch your mouth city boy. Fine ass city boy, but still. You’d assume that Arya might give Gendry some run if she even cared about that shit anymore. But more than anything, she’s there so he can craft her a weapon. I don’t know what that is, but it looks like what Ezio had da Vinci crafting in Assassin’s Creed II.
The Lady of Winterfell or as we will now refer to her simply as The Lady is reading these messages via raven when Jon walks in. Their allies ain’t following through on their duties, mostly because they pledged fealty to King Jon Snow, but King Jon Snow ain’t really a thing anymore. Jon ain’t wrong about needing the army, but Sansa ain’t wrong about bringing a conqueror into their home. Jon vouches for Daenerys, but Sansa hits him back with this:
The Lady: Did you bend the knee to save the North or because you love her?
Jon: First of all, I don’t know why you cussing at me. Second, why are you yelling? I ain’t even do nothin.
Daenerys and Jorah the Lesser Mormont roll up on Sam, who is studying of course. She comes to grant him a reward for saving the Lesser Mormont’s life back when he was turning into The Thing. Sam is like, so, I got some overdue library books, I could use those fees waived. And also, I stole the ancestral sword from my family. When he drops that his name is Tarly, Dany is like, “Of Randall Tarly?”
Heifer, what other Tarly’s do you know?
Yeah, this shit got SUPER awkward. I give Dany some credit, she could’ve kept that shit from him, but she was direct and like, oh, so about your dad…
And look, this shit made sense, Sam was taken aback to learn that her dad had been made into Filet Mignon, even though his dad was fucking terrible to him. But like, your pops is dead. That aint’ no light shit. Then this exchange:
Sam: Well, at least my brother is head of the house now, and I can go home.
Daenerys: Your brother stood with your dad, ya know, until they were engulfed in flames and just became ash.
Sam: Well my sister…
Daenerys: She got burnt too
Sam: My cousin—
Daenerys: Chestnuts roasting…
Sam: Great Aunt?
Daenerys: We didn’t start the fire…
Sam: Stable boy?!
Daenerys: Everyone in your family is cinder now, Sam…Like, my bad.
Sam’s lip was trembling so hard that shit had its own fault line. Sam went from being flattered to get a favor from the Queen to singing “It’s Quiet Uptown” on the streets of Winterfell. My dude dealing with the unimaginable. And Sam, being an emotional fucking wreck, who is the worst person for him to run into for emotional support?
Three-Eyed Bran. Sam needs a shoulder to cry on and Bran is like, shoulders? Inconsequential. We got other shit to attend to. Yo, Sam was like, what you doing out here and Bran was like, someone out past curfew and I want to do that shit where I surprise them when they walk in the door.
The Once And Future King
I want us all to remember it’s in the middle of the fucking night, yo.
Also, Bran is like, yeah, so fuck your feelings right now, but it’s time to tell Jon what it do. Sam is like, but you’re his brother, and Bran is like, NOPE. As in, one, I ain’t really Bran no more and two, that’s my cousin on my daddy’s side, fam. Keep that shit straight.
Jon down in the crypts paying his respects to his not pops. Damn, Jon is disconnected af he didn’t even know Sam was here. Like, Jon’s world is Daenerys and about a 100-foot radius from her. Das it. Then Sam is like, you know Daenerys executed my bloodline, right? Jon is like, that sucks…but like war sucks so…
Sam also is asking if Jon would’ve done the same, and I think it’s important to remember that Jon had 12-year-old Ollie, who was basically Bruce Wayne in the making, executed for treason so, I’m gonna say: strong chance.
Jon: I wasn’t a king
Sam: Bullshit. You’ve always been king
Jon: I gave up my crown
Sam: This is bigger than Rap fam!
Yep, finally, after all this time, Sam dropped that mixtape on Jon and let him know who the fuck he really is.
You are Aegon Targaryen, true heir to the Iron Throne.
I say Bastdamn, it’s like a Tribe Called Quest, you gotta say the whole thing!
Jon learns that he’s been all up in his auntie’s personal business and the first thing dude said was, My dad lied to me.
Ok, first off, like Sam said, that ain’t your daddy. He was protecting your ass. Remember when Joffrey was drowning Robert’s bastards in the Narrow sea? Same energy for you fam. Second: Aegon Targaryen, true heir to the Iron Throne, I need you to be a little bit more selfish. Like, just for once. Like, I bet Daenerys thinks this song is about her, but this song is actually about you. Sam hit him with the reality that he gave up his crown to save his people, but that shit seems to be way more important to Dany. Would she give up her crown for the greater good? Yeah, this shit ain’t mild sauce no more, this that jalapeno spice.
Scouting party up north. I think we all knew Tormund lived through the great collapse when Viserion put that Azula flame to the wall, despite how implausible that was. The parties meet up and they’re like, yeah, we need to bounce from up outta here. Dondarrion is like did you find anybody and the party is like…sorta?
Yeah, the Lord Umber boy pinned up against the wall, with limbs surrounding him. They got him lookin’ like Little Man Ursula, my dude. And this is the Night King sending a message. The Night King…sends messages now? I… Ok. Is the Night King the uni-bomber now or….whateva.
Of course Lord Umber aint’ dead or at least ain’t dead in the way we thought when he starts yelling his ass off. Dondarrion gotta put him out of his misery with fire. Shit is bad yo. The Night King is basically in the same zip code as Winterfell now. Winter is coming and they can use the HOV Lane. They gonna be here in Winterfell in like 20 minutes.
Folks making their way into Winterfell including a cloaked rider. My dude finally gets off his horse and its Jaime Lannister, who must go to the same hairdresser as his sister, but he don’t be getting the color. He looking over Winterfell like, well, it’s good to be back (since I can’t go anywhere else).
UNTIL HE SEES BRAN. Cuz Bran been seeing his ass all night. Bran been out there waiting since lights out. Bran drank some coffee, took some no doze, watched Colbert and stayed up ALL NIGHT waiting on Jaime. I imagine that convo being like:
Bran: Well, if ain’t Jaime Lannister, sir.
Bran: You’ve caused quite a stir, sir.
Yo, Thrones is baaaaaack cuz I can’t wait for THAT conversation.
And as great as this episode was, I want to be clear: Daenerys is facing a power struggle and bedding Jon. Yara went home. Cersei is busy sleeping with the sentient version of toxic masculinity. Night King gonna win game one in a blowout fam. Like, Curry might not even play in the fourth quarter.
Things are as bad as they’ve ever been.