Game of Thrones
Season 6, Episode 5
– Recap –
(SPOILER ALERT: This recap contains details about last night’s episode of “Game of Thrones”. If you haven’t watched it yet, you may want to stop reading!)
by Kyla Brewer
The Recap Sequence
If you don’t know why the Twitterverse is afire with #holdthedoor” references today, you missed last night’s “Game of Thrones” on HBO — but more on that later. This week’s installment of the sweeping fantasy drama based on George R.R. Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire” novels contained a number of heavy revelations for fans.
The fast-paced episode opened with a steely Sansa (Sophie Turner, “The Thirteenth Tale”) berating Petyr Baelish (Aiden Gillen, “The Dark Knight Rises,” 2012) for leaving her with the Boltons, asking him if he knew about Ramsay (Iwan Rheon, “Misfits”). “If you didn’t, you’re an idiot,” she said. “If you did, you’re my enemy.” Petyr seemed convincingly remorseful, and when Sansa cast him away, he offered her a hopefully reliable tip about her Uncle Brynden Tulley taking back Riverrun.
Meanwhile, in the House of Black and White, Arya (Maisie Williams, “Dr. Who”) came face to face with her family’s past when she was tasked with killing the actress who plays Cersei in a comic play about the events that led to Ned Stark’s death. The experience called into question whether or not she’s truly fit to be a faceless one, especially when she questioned Jaqen (Tom Wlaschiha, “Rush,” 2013) as to why the woman should die.
Bran’s (Isaac Hampstead-Wright, “Closed Circuit,” 2014) latest romp through the space-time continuum led to one of the season’s biggest revelations: the origin of the White Walkers. In a terrifying scene, Bran watched as one of The Children of the Forest plunged some kind of magical blade into a man to create a White Walker. Bran then learned The Children of the Forest created the White Walkers to help them combat man, who arrived in Westeros and started chopping down their sacred trees. Of course, something obviously went horribly wrong along the way.
In the Iron Islands, things seemed to be going well for Yara (Gemma Whelan, “Gulliver’s Travels,” 2010) when Theon (Alfie Allen, “Soulboy,” 2010) stood up for his sister, despite protests that a woman wasn’t capable of winning a war. Unfortunately, Uncle Euron (Pilou Asbæk) crashed the party and rallied the men by telling them he intended to bring the fleet across the sea to Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke, “Terminator Genisys,” 2015) so that she may reclaim the Iron Throne. Yay? As he faced a rather brutal trial by drowning before he could claim his post, Theon and Yara fled with their allies.
Speaking of Daenerys (as we all love to do), she was in for a surprise when Jorah (Iain Glen, “Resident Evil: Apocalypse,” 2004) told her he’s infected with greyscale before (finally!) professing his love for her. She commanded him to find a cure, leading fans to wonder if he might seek out those who halted greyscale in the late Shireen Baratheon (Kerry Ingram, “Les Misérables,” 2012).
After discussing the state of the union in Meereen, Tyrion (Peter Dinklage, “The Station Agent,” 2003) and Varys (Conleth Hill, “Goodbye Mr. Chips”) met with a new priestess of the Lord of Light, Kinvara (Ania Bukstein, “The Secrets,” 2007), who suggested they use the dragons to “purify” the population of non-believers. Varys didn’t hide his disdain for the new Red Woman, appearing to think she was a shyster, but Kinvara revealed she knew more about Varys’s past than he was comfortable with.
Back in the tree cave, Bran gave into temptation and grabbed hold of a root without the The Three-Eyed Raven (Max von Sydow, “Awakenings,” 1990), leading to a vision of the White Walkers and their army of the undead. When one of the White Walkers touched Bran in the vision, his hiding place was revealed.
As they awaited their fate, Sansa talked strategy with Jon (Kit Harington, “Pompeii,” 2014) and Davos (Liam Cunningham, “The Numbers Station,” 2013). She neglected to tell them about her recent encounter with Petyr, but together they came up with a plan to muster enough northerners to take out Ramsay and reclaim Winterfell.
When winter arrived at The Three Eyed Raven’s weirwood tree, Meera (Ellie Kendrick, “An Education,” 2007) tried to rouse Bran and rally Hodor (Kristian Nairn, “Four Warriors,” 2015) as the White Walkers attacked with their army of undead wights. She managed to take out one of the Walkers with her obsidian spear, and Leaf (Kae Alexander, “Bad Education,” 2012) sacrificed herself to take out a number of wights with a bomb. However, it was Hodor who was the true hero as he allowed Meera to escape with Bran by holding the door closed against the wights. Bran’s vision took him back in time to see young Willis echo Meera’s present-day pleas for Hodor to “Hold the door!” while he had a seizure. Eventually “Hold the door!” became “Hodor,” explaining what the poor bloke’s been saying all along and raising interesting questions about destiny. After all, Willis wouldn’t have become “Hodor” if Bran hadn’t led the White Walkers to the tree, so clearly, everything is unfolding as it was meant to – at least for now.
Be sure to listen to the latest “Speaking of Thrones” for our impressions of the episode, and check out next week’s “Game of Thrones,” Sunday, May 29, on HBO.