Game of Thrones Episode 703 Recap: The Queen’s Justice
Tyrion and Missandei meet Jon and Davos on the beach, asking them to turn over their weapons. They agree – but then the Dothraki army take their boat. On the long hike up to the castle, Tyrion asks Jon about Sansa, and if she misses him. Jon has no answer, and Tyrion rushes to qualify his joke – that it was a sham marriage and he never touched her. “She’s smarter than she lets on,” Tyrion says of Sansa. “She’s starting to let on,” is Jon’s response. The ice is broken – then a dragon sweeps over them, startling Jon and Davos to the ground.
Varys meets Melisandre on the cliff, wondering why she isn’t inside. After all, she was a major part of the meeting between “fire and ice.” Melisandre admits she did not part on good terms with Jon or Davos, and she would only be a distraction. She tells Varys she is going to Volantis, and he suggests she not return to Westeros. Melisandre says she must die in this “strange country,” just like Varys.
Finally, the meeting that fans have been waiting for for years: Jon and Daenerys. When he enters, Daenerys is perched on her throne, and Missandei gives her a lengthy introduction. After a beat, Davos realizes he is supposed to do the same for Jon. “This is Jon Snow,” he says. A beat; then: “King of the North.” Daenerys is perhaps trying a little too hard to prove herself to Jon, and assumes he is there to bend the knee. Jon is not. Daenerys points out that his family once promised their fealty to the Targaryens, and Jon points out that her father burned his family alive. Basically, they are both saying they should not be held to the standards their families set before them.
Daenerys promises Jon that if he bends the knee, she will make him Warden of the North when she becomes queen. Jon thinks that they need each other. He knows she isn’t a monster like Cersei; otherwise she would have stormed King’s Landing already, despite the death toll. Jon is more concerned with the real monsters — the army of the dead — than he is about who sits on the throne. Daenerys doesn’t really believe the army of the dead exists, and she takes exception to Jon describing everyone — Daenerys, Cersei, himself — as children playing a game. Tyrion has to explain it to her, but that doesn’t soothe her.
Daenerys climbs off her throne and approaches Jon menacingly, talking about how as a child she fled Dragonstone before Robert’s assassins could kill her; how so many have tried to kill her she has lost count; how she has been sold, raped, defiled, but it is her faith in herself that has kept her standing. The Dothraki crossed the sea for her; she was born to rule the Seven Kingdoms. Davos steps in to counter for Jon: he was the first to bring in the wildlings; he was elected leader of Night’s Watch; chosen as king; all because he earned it – not expected it as his birthright. He starts rambling out of his passion, including letting it slip that he was stabbed in the heart. Jon stops him with a look.
Tyrion tries to convince Jon to kneel, and Jon again refuses because he doesn’t know Daenerys. She claims the throne because her father once held it. “I will continue to lead the North as long as I can,” Jon promises. Daenerys decides this is fair – but it is also fair that when she is queen, she will view the North as being in open rebellion. Before she can make any other threats, Varys rushes in and whispers in her ear. Daenerys promises she will have food and baths prepared for her guests. Jon asks if he is her prisoner. “Not yet,” she says. When Jon and Davos have left the throne room, Varys tells her about the attack on their armada. Both Yara and Ellaria are either captured or dead.
In fact, they have been captured. Euron returns to King’s Landing with Ellaria, Yara, and Tyene in chains, dragged through the streets, being spat on by the public while they throw adulation on Euron. He brings them to Cersei and presents Ellaria and Tyene as gifts; justice for her murdered daughter. Cersei says he has proved himself, but will only grant him what his heart desires when the war is won. In other words, she will marry him after he helps her win. Cersei declares that Euron will lead the navy, and Jaime will lead the army. Euron quietly taunts Jaime, wanting to know his secrets for seducing his sister.
Cersei visits Ellaria and Tyene in the dungeon. She taunts Ellaria with Oberyn’s death, while Ellaria seethes, trying desperately to chew through her gag. Cersei then turns her attention to Tyene, a “perfect Dornish beauty,” who must be her mother’s favorite. She says she dreams of how she will kill the woman who killed her only daughter, and thought about having Gregor crush her head, or Tyene’s head, just like Oberyn. But that would be too quick, too easy. Instead, Cersei gives Tyene a kiss. She wipes her lips and Qyburn comes out and gives Cersei a tiny bottle of antidote. It is the kiss of death. Cersei promises Ellaria that she will watch her daughter die, then live in this dungeon forever. “If you refuse food, we will force it into you,” she vows. On her way out, Cersei tells the guards to change the torture every few hours.
Murder seems to turn Cersei on, for she finds Jaime getting drunk in her chamber, and she starts kissing him. He pulls away, but she is insistent, and eventually he gives in to her kisses… and other things. Early the next morning, the two naked in bed together, there is a knock. Jaime begs her not to answer because he doesn’t want anyone to see them like this, but Cersei no longer cares. “I am queen; I can do what I like.” Or who she likes. The woman who tells Cersei she has a visitor tries not to show surprise when Jaime smiles sheepishly from the bed.
Cersei meets with Tycho Nestoris, a banker with the Iron Bank. Cersei’s vaults are empty and she is surrounded by enemies. The bank can no longer fund her war. Cersei promises that her armada owns the Narrow Sea, and she has a plan for the supposedly invulnerable dragons. She also points out that Daenerys considers herself a revolutionary, and revolutionaries rarely pay their debts, but Lannisters always do. She encourages the banker to stay in King’s Landing as her guest for a fortnight, then by the time he returns to Braavos, the money will be repaid in full.
Back in Dragonstone, Tyrion goes out to cliffs for a nice brood but finds Jon has beaten him there. Tyrion wants to brood over the loss of the Greyjoy armada; Jon is brooding over being held a prisoner on this island and how nobody believes him about the white walkers. But Tyrion does believe him: “I trust the eyes of an honest man.” Jon doesn’t know how to convince others, but now he really must get back to the North. Tyrion points out that Daenerys isn’t going to go north to fight a villain she has never seen with a man she doesn’t know, but she’s not a monster. He asks Jon if he has any reasonable request.
Tyrion takes the proposal back to Daenerys. Jon wants dragonglass. Daenerys is annoyed that he would ask for a favor without pledging fealty. Tyrion reminds her that he is a potential ally, and they are getting short on allies. Plus, she didn’t even know about the dragonglass, and has no use for it. Daenerys consents, but then turns to something Davos said that has been troubling her: Jon taking a knife to the heart for his people. Tyrion blows it off as a turn of phrase. Daenerys goes to Jon and tells him she will allow him to mine the dragonglass, and even provide men and resources. Daenerys won’t go so far as admitting she believes him.
Up in Winterfell, Sansa is proving herself a strong and thoughtful leader. Baelish gives her some advice: don’t just fight the war in the North. In her mind, Sansa should fight everywhere, every battle, see every possible series of events happening. That way she will never be surprised. Sansa doesn’t have time to absorb this as she is called to the gate. A crowd has gathered, and Sansa sees why. It is Bran. Sansa is shocked, stunned – then throws her arms around him.
The reunited siblings sit in a quiet forest nook. Sansa says that as the last living full-blooded Stark male, he is next in line to be Lord of Winterfell. Bran can’t – he is the three-eyed raven. Sansa doesn’t know what that means, and Bran doesn’t quite know how to explain it to her. He does say he can see everything that has ever happened, and is happening; he just needs to learn to see it better. Sansa doesn’t really believe him, until Bran tells her he is sorry for all that happened to her. He starts to recount her wedding night with Ramsay, and Sansa, shaken, quickly leaves.
Over at the citadel, the maester is examining Jorah. He is bloody and scarred, but no longer infected. Jorah plays dumb and doesn’t rat out Sam. The maester releases Jorah from quarantine, but wants to see Sam in his office. Sam says farewell to Jorah, shaking his hand when no one had for a very long time. When he goes to the maester, he isn’t quite in trouble, but he doesn’t get a free pass either. The maester is amazed that Sam was able to pull off the intricate surgery, but mad because he disobeyed. His reward is not being expelled from the citadel; his punishment is copying decaying books and parchments.
Daenerys wants to destroy Euron’s flotilla, but her advisers warn her against sending out their few remaining ships. She doesn’t intend to use ships. She wants her dragons to do it. Everyone wants Daenerys to stay. She switches topics and asks about Casterly Rock. Tyrion explains the strategy as we see scenes of the battle play out.
No one has ever taken Casterly Rock. Tyrion’s father built the stronghold with impregnable walls that are impossible to pass. But while his father built the entire castle, there was one part he thought was beneath him: the sewers. So he left that to his “dwarf” son. Tyrion built them with secret passageways so he could sneak women into his room. So some Unsullied attack the gates, but this is just a distraction. A handful of troops enter via the sewers, open the gates, and the Unsullied take the Lannister army by surprise, and take over the castle. Their conquest is fast and thorough. Too fast. Too thorough. Grey Worm is concerned – there should be a larger army there. He looks out to the sea and sees their fleet of ships being burned by Euron’s flotilla.
Jaime has taken his army to Highgarden. They decimate Olenna’s guards. With everyone dead, Jaime finds Olenna in her room, waiting. She knew they were coming, and knew Jaime would come for her. When asked about taking the army away from Casterly Rock, Jaime says he isn’t concerned. It’s not worth much anymore, and they won’t be able to keep it. Olenna keeps up the small talk, asking how Jaime will kill her. She comments that Cersei is a monster, has done things that she couldn’t even imagine. Jaime defends her, saying that when the people are living peacefully and fruitfully in a world she built, no one will be “wringing their hands” over how she built it. It is then that Olenna realizes Jaime truly does love her. Knowing she is about to die, she suggests Jaime unburden himself to her. He declines, and Olenna says Cersei is a disease. “I think we’re done here,” Jaime says.
Cersei had a few ideas on how Olenna should die, including flaying her alive. Jaime talked his sister out of it, and produces a vial of poison, which he empties into Olenna’s glass of wine, promising her it will be painless. Olenna drinks it all down. “I’d hate to die like your son, clawing at my neck, foaming at the mouth,” she teased. Then, very pointedly, she tells Jaime to tell Cersei that she was the one who killed Joffrey. “I want her to know it was me.”
Mic drop. Olenna poisoned Joffrey.
You can watch a preview for Game of Thrones Season 7 Episode 4 by clicking here.