SPOILER ALERT! awesome, Game of Thrones is really back now.
Whereas the season premiere felt like a big group text where everyone says what they’ve been doing for a while, episode two of season six really launched a few story lines ahead and left us shocked a few times as well.
It was a big episode for head smashing and defenseless people being ripped to shreds by hounds. I like to think they weren’t superfluous happenings, and I’ll seek to rationalize that later.
In terms of the plot advancing, episode two can be summed up by four defining events.
Of course, if you haven't caught up yet, what the f*ck are you doing reading an article divulging just that? Get on with your life. Head over to HBO Now.
Then, after that's done, watch a dope recap done by two of the dopest TV nerds you've ever met with The Ringer's After the Thrones.
But back to the four defining events of last night: Jon Snow’s resurrection, the apparently never-ending villainy of Ramsay Bolton, Brandon Stark’s return, and more Greyjoy drama.
But what have we learned? Read on.
Jon Snow is f*cking back
First and foremost, of course Jon Snow was going to come back to life, but it was fun wondering about it.
After Melisandre brought everyone’s grandma nightmares (or fantasies?) to life in the premiere, it seemed actually possible that we might have to let him go—or did it?
It made no sense to dangle the prospect of resurrection without delivering on it (like, what is this The Walking Dead?). Regardless of logic, the resurrection scene took so long that by the end, we’re led to believe that it didn’t work.
And Melisandre probably wouldn’t have even tried if it weren’t for Davos, winning one for team hope by basically telling her “IDGAF about the gods really. Just do your job, m’lady, OK?”
Never the less Jon is a bastard, and maybe bastards just survive. But also hopefully they don’t, because Ramsay (Snow) Bolton is pretty evil.
Bastards are bastards
He’s on the King Joffrey level of evil in that he’s a demented and power-hungry sadist. Even worse, he’s smart. Ramsay is not entitled in the same ways as Joffrey; he’s not king—but his ambition is clear.
By the time he seized his father’s place and set the hounds on his mother-in-law and newborn half-brother, we’re suddenly aware that Ramsay’s positioned himself to be a major player, basically undisputed King of the North with Stannis Baratheon (which, yo, where is he? Pics of the corpse or it didn't happen) out of the way and no real Starks to challenge him... yet?
In fact, Ramsay’s modus operandi seems to be sneak attack unless the person is tied up, in which case torture is the way to go. But how long can that last? He’s bound to fizzle out, or more likely get gotten by a hero.
Bran's gotten taller
Yes. He grew. Casting choices probably required that they find someone doomed to be short. But after going Bran-less for all of season five, it’s great to see that he’s hit puberty and now has special flashback abilities.
We’ve learned that Hodor used to be a stable boy who could speak just fine, but what happened there?
We also saw Ned Stark and his brother Benjen as boys in training in Winterfell’s courtyard as well as his aunt Lyanna who died before the series began. By her idyllic introduction, it makes sense that she’ll be important later on.
Rumors from the nerds that know suggest that her and Rhaegar Targaryen (R + L = J) are supposed to get the business and give birth to a bastard.
Of course, and we should note, in the flashback young Ned Stark hears the line "raise your shield or I'll ring your head like a bell," something Jon told Oly-- seriously, f*ck that kid --in training before the little turd stabbed him in the night. All of that is to say, who knows if Snow is a Stark or not or what?
Balon digs bungee
On the Iron Islands, Balon Greyjoy has been murdered by his brother whose spirit animal is apparently a storm. Poor Theon is supposedly headed back home. But to what end?
Will he be murdered upon delivery? What of his mysterious uncle? What of his sympathetic sister? “I am the storm” is a badass way to kill your brother. I might be able to get used to this guy.
Only the highlights
Now, two people got smashed this week. One loud mouth’s head was smashed by the Mountain for talking trash about the Queen. What'd we learn? Don't talk about incest in public, obviously. Another guy was entirely smashed by that really awesome giant.
Besides just good ol’ person smashing, maybe these shows of brutality foreshadow the forces at odds?
If the giant represents the North, and the Mountain represents the South in force, motivation, and personality, then that would be good; the giant would smash the mountain so to speak, and the good guys go home happy.
On the other hand-- and this is definitely reaching --there's this idea that people only die once they've fulfilled their purpose: Ned lost his head, but what more could he do? Robb Stark's role was obviously to lose the war. Jon Snow isn't dead.
It's something to ponder when we think about dangling threads elsewhere, especially when it comes to the Mountain: Thoros of Myr, Beric Dondarrion (eyepatch dude who gets resurrected back in the day) Gendry (probz a Baratheon), and the Brotherhood without banners.
Remember, they're probably just chillin' in the Riverlands somewhere. That's basically where we left off with them when they sold Gendry (probz a Baratheon) to Melisandre. Beric's purpose might be to kill the Mountain. He really wants to do that. That's why he keeps coming back. We'll see...
Inevitabilities: Arya gets her sight back and Tyrion lets the dragons go. A lot of fans of the books speculated about the riders of the dragons: Dany because, like, look at her! Bran because the Raven dude said he'd fly, and Tyrion because, well, we never knew until last night.[Feature Image Courtesy Instagram]