After a long, long wait HBO’s hit series Game of Thrones returns for it’s highly anticipated 7th season. In the past few weeks fans both old and new around the world have been rebinging to catch up right in time for tonight’s episode. Reliving major events such as Ned’s Beheading, The Red Wedding, John’s tribulations both on the wall and beyond, Arya’s journey for revenge, so much has led up to this very moment. Shall we begin?
Immediately after a brief series recap we are treated to a scene centered around Walder Frey, which at first honestly puzzled me. As we all remember, the last we see of the eldest Frey is his death at the hands of Arya after having been fed a pie made of his eldest sons. As the scene plays out, it’s almost as if a switch went off in my head and it became evidently clear exactly what was taking place. If The Red Wedding was one of the single biggest tragedies that has taken place on this show (and there’s been a lot), than this would have to be one of the single most satisfying moments on this show to date. It was glorious, and it was only the first scene!
After the opening credits we find that Bran and Meera have finally made it to the wall. The last we saw of the two they had just been saved from the Whitewalker’s by Ned Stark’s brother Benjen Stark, whom before then hasn’t been seen since way back in the first episode of season 1. The show has done a spectacular job at further building up the upcoming conflict with a brief glimpse at the continuously growing size of the Whitewalker Army through the eyes of the Three Eyed Raven.
Before gushing more about this amazing episode, I just have to say I love the change of pace in this episode when it comes to Sam. Poor Sam has been having the absolute worst time in the Citadel. He’s been cleaning chamber pots, and trying to earn the respect of those around him just so that he can fulfill his task of learning as much about the Whitewalkers as he can from the Citadel’s libraries. While taking the bowl from one of the chambers, an arm shoots out from an opening and startles him. The man inside the chamber asks “Has she arrived? The Dragon Queen, Daenarys Stormborn?” Just as same replies that he hasn’t heard anything yet, there’s a quick shot of a Grey Scale infected arm retreating back behind the door. I think it’s safe to say that we all know who is behind the door, but the realization of who the man is makes what seems like a minor scene so much cooler.
To be honest, it’s hard to not watch this episode and get the feeling that this may be one of the greatest seasons not only in GoT, but in Television history. The gravity of Cersei, now Queen of the Seven Kingdoms, The army of Whitewalkers led by the Night’s King marching toward the world of man, of Daenarys finally reaching her childhood home Dragonstone in her quest to take back what was “rightfully” hers. It all hits you like a beautifully written piece of music, with not a single note that hits the ear wrong.
Daenary’s homecoming is powerful. The entire scene of them entering the gates of Castle Dragonstone, exploring what will now become her home base in Westeros is amplified by not one character having a line. While Tyrion and Daenarys take in their surroundings quietly, they find themselves in Stannis Baratheon’s old war room. When they finally stop at the head of the table, Daenary’s asks Tyrion “Shall We Begin?” and the scene cuts to black.
While fans have built up this incredible hype machine over the past few months, rarely does a show deliver a season premiere as complete and satisfying as ‘Dragonstone’. After having been left to speculate as to what exactly we would be getting in this shorter than usual season, I believe that we may be getting the best season yet. By the time that you guys are reading this I’ve watched the episode 3 times, and I still can’t find a bad thing to say about it outside of what feels like a throwaway cameo. I’m completely stoked for next Sunday’s episode and am dying to see how GoT will follow up this episode while still ramping up the intensity for the rest of the season. If you guys have any theories for where this season is heading, or have any other memorable parts of ‘Dragonstone’ that you’d like to discuss leave a comment below and stay tuned to 4GLU for our weekly review.