TV Shows: Game of Thrones: Season 7 Episode 2: "Stormborn" Review

Monday, July 24, 2017

Episode synopsis:

Whoa! Was this episode not crazy? Dan and David have officially adopted the "leave-the-shocking-bits-to-the-end" paradigm. There are two things I learned from this episode. The first is that Daenerys' conquering of the King's Landing and her ruling over the seven kingdoms is not going to be as easy as I once thought, even with her three dragons. At least not if the weapon Qyburn (Cersei's personal experimenter) developed is by the time Dani lays siege to King's Landing. *Spoiler Alert* The second, and perhaps more terrifying prospect is that Arya is not Arya. There was a theory circulating around in the GoT fandom that in the previous season, more specifically, in the seventh episode "The Broken Man", when Arya was attacked by the Waif for failing to kill the actress the "Many-Faced God" commanded her to kill, she was stabbed numerous times and appeared have emerged from the fight victorious. Fans speculated that Arya is not, in fact, Arya, but the Waif who had taken Arya's face after killing her. I had to hand it to them, it's a plausible theory. But I wasn't convinced that was what happened...until now.

I've been trying to pay extra attention to Arya since the onset of the season seven. I've been trying to look for the slightest shifts in her character or personality that could hint at the increasing probability of the theory. But there wasn't anything that stood out until this episode when Arya supposedly "reunites" with "Nymeria", who apparently wasn't actually Nymeria. There are three possible explanations for that scene: The first is that the dire wolf Arya encountered wasn't actually Nymeria, which is- again- what seemed to have happened; the second, and the least likely of the three possibilities, is that the dire wolf "Arya" had encountered was, in fact, Nymeria, but she (Nymeria) doesn't remember Arya. The third possible explanation is that the dire wolf is Nymeria, but she didn't identify Arya because "Arya" isn't Arya who is dead, but the Waif. And what about that ending?! When Euron Greyjoy promised to present Cersei with a suitable gift to prove himself loyal and worthy of being her King, I knew he was going to do something violent to her enemies, but I didn't count on Yara and Theon being so close and the enemies he chose to present. *Spoiler Alert* (As if I haven't spoiled things enough for you already) I totally expected Theon's cowardice when Euron threatened Yara life by holding a knife to her throat and taunted Theon. I'm also not at all angry with Theon. I sympathize with him, what with everything he endured when he was held captive and tortured by Ramsey. When the ship was being raided and everyone was tortured or killed, you could see him pointedly looking at the happenings with such fear. I don't blame him for leaving Yara. At least, Euron didn't have the audacity to kill her on the spot. That's something, right?

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