Hodor is no more
But he’ll go down in folklore
He really tried to hold door
That’s what he’ll be known for
Maybe if Bran’s legs worked
Hodor wouldn’t have to hold door?
“The Door” dove deeper into this shows mythology than any episode so far. It’s probably not a coincidence that Lost veteran Jack Bender was chosen to direct this particular episode (it’s “The Constant” except with swords). There were a great many reveals beyond the wall, perhaps most notably that the Children of the Forest created the White Walkers as a means for defense from the First Men. This doesn’t mean much to me. I’m not even really sure who the Children of the Forest are considering we’ve seen them for a combined five minutes the entire series. But I’m very pleased with the forward progress involving the Walkers.
But the BIGGEST development in my eyes is that Bran’s visions aren’t purely flashbacks but are really his consciousness jumping around, I think. When he has a present vision and sees that army of Walkers, he’s touched by their King and the scar is still there when he comes back to “reality”. I don’t think Bran can change the past, per se, but his consciousness has had an impact long before we knew him as Bran Stark.
When Bran and the Three-Eyed Raven take a look at Young Ned in Winterfell, Bran’s conscious is very much both there and in the cave the Walkers are storming in real time. We even hear Meera Reed’s screams in the “past”. Bran is in the head of both young Hodor and present Hodor. In the present, Hodor is holding the door under orders so Meera and Bran can get away. When the Three-Eyed Raven is struck down in the present, he disappears in the past. Young Hodor is hearing Meera’s scream from the future as well due to Bran being in his head. He starts having some sort of seizure, repeating “Hold the door” until ultimately he starts slurring and can only say “Hodor”. Then he dies in the present. It was a lot to take in. I don’t really get it all, but we now know that Bran’s had a hand in what’s happened already and will have a hand in what happens moving forward. It took a long time for him to become interesting but he has. Surely some credit goes to Isaac Hempstead Wright’s growth as an actor.
As for the actual action going down in this scenes, I thought it was messy. I never got a sense of where anything was or the hesitancy. There as an awful lot of cheap CGI.
Checking in with Bronn of the Blackwater, week 5
This is bullshit. We’re halfway through the season now and haven’t seen or heard from Bronn.
The past was a major part of the other story lines as well. Sansa and Brienne confronted Littlefinger about his decision to have Sansa marry Ramsay Bolton, and Sansa informed him about what happened (in a really chilling monologue, you get it Sophie Turner). I really thought Littlefinger was done for given the tone of the scene. How was he going to talk his way out of this one? Sansa pointed out how his power is sort of bullshit, wondering how he can protect her when he couldn’t even protect himself from Brienne right now were she to tell Brienne to unsheathe Oathkeeper. Sansa is merciful though. So she doesn’t kill Littlefinger, possibly because of his knowledge (the Tully’s retaking Riverrun is an important development). Maybe knowledge is power. Or maybe power is power.
So the A-team at the Wall –Jon, Ser Davos, Sansa, Melisandre, and possible love birds Brienne and Tormund- leave to rally the banner men and retake Winterfell. This is just one of the many battles we can expect by seasons end. Halfway through, this season has already been stuffed with action and it doesn’t appear to be slowing down.
Arya has a bit of moment rooted in the past as well. Jaqen gives her the poison telling her to kill a woman who performs at the local theatre. The play sees her target starring as Cersei and just so happens to be about the death of Robert Baratheon and the beheading of Ned Stark. This was a perfect seen. Early on, Arya and the crowd of commoners are chuckling at the negative depictions of the Lannister’s. But when Ned Stark comes in, played as a stupid man who can barely speak coherently, Arya’s face shifts to one of extreme discomfort. When they act out the beheading, she’s taken aback. Arya’s traveled so far since season one that it’s easy to forget she’s still a very young girl who lost her family. It’s very much a part of her. She isn’t “no one” and she’s probably never going to be. This could get her into trouble with the faceless men down the line.
Was there any peen this week?
DING DING DING. There was peen, wart-covered peen in fact. Balls too. One of the actors pulled his junk out backstage. This is a monumental development.
Shit went down with Greyjoys, as the Iron Islands need to find a new ruler. Yara was the presumptive favorite given her experience. The Hilary Clinton, I suppose. Theon supports her claim, which meant for a minute that pretty much everyone did. He gave a nice speech about her and everyone started chanting “Yara!” It almost felt like part two of Theon’s redemption (part one being saving Sansa), but than that dick Euron showed up. He talked about raveling the world, his plan to seduce Dany with his fleet and charm, even admitting to killing his brother. I don’t understand why everyone rallied around him literally thirty seconds after endorsing Yara. Talk about flip-flopping. But so much happened in this hour that I can live with them skipping the politics in this instance.
Yara and Theon are smart enough to know that Euron isn’t going to be chill, so they take a few supporters and the best ship and flee (no idea where they’re headed). Euron doesn’t seem too petty, as his response is ordering everyone to begin constructing a new, better fleet. His goal is Dany and the Iron Throne.
The “Daenerys Sucks Diaries”, week 5.
I might have to change the name of these diaries, since Dany has been noticeably less sucky this season. Her scene with Jorah was perhaps her most naked moment on the show. It was exceptional acting by Emilia Clarke; conveying her love for Jorah while still sounding very stern and queen like. But man, Jorah cannot catch a break. Dany FINALLY welcomes him back into her good graces and he has no choice but to tell her about the Greyscale that will likely consume him. Jorah friend zone face was in full effect. She tasks him with going and finding a cure. Perhaps he’s headed to the Citadel and he’ll bump into Sam?
Tyrion, Varys, Grey Worm, and Missandei are still trying to keep Meereen alive while they wait for Daenerys to return. To try and put out a PR fire, Tyrion meets with a red priestess named Kinvara (Melisandre, basically). This woman says Dany is the chosen one in the eyes of the Lord of Light. Varys points out that Melisandre said the same thing about Stannis, and then Jon, basically calling bullshit. But he gets SONNED when Kinvara reminds him he doesn’t have a penis. Theon was also reminded he doesn’t have a penis this week. The past haunts these two as well.
Tweet of the Week
This was an enjoyable episode despite the visually messy climax; and a CRITICAL one in regards to GOT’s larger story. HBO continues to mention season eight as the likely end point, so there’s little time to waste and these last three episodes have done a great job laying important groundwork. The White Walkers are starting to come into focus, as is Bran’s role in it all. It also featured one of the sadder deaths on the show.
Arbitrary Ranking of the Week
In honor of Jack Bender, Lost characters who’d thrive on GOT, ranked:
- Sayid (the man is a complete badass, this one is simple)
- Ana Lucia (see above)
- Sawyer (isn’t he basically Littlefinger with a Southern accent?)
- Desmond (isn’t he basically Bran with a Scottish brogue?)
- Ben (master manipulator, Cersei-esque)
- Kate (she has experience as a fugitive)
- Rose & Bernard (the people who live in GOT are the ones who mind their own damn business)
Five Random Notes
- Still no Ian McShane, which is infuriating because he is the best.
- If Trump becomes president and builds that damn wall, I am 100% in favor of having a real life Night’s Watch. Just take the entire population of Arizona and refuse to let them leave.
- HBO Nordic accidentally leaked this episode a day early. It was taken down, but it was too late. Torrenters don’t sleep.
- Silicon Valley continues to be the best thing on TV and it’s a very light, quick-moving show. Easy to get into. Check it out.
- That preview for Bill Simmons’ new show was “meh”. I really hope it’s not just an excuse for him to drop f-bombs and droll over actors from Boston (sorry, Bill, but no way in hell are Matt Damon and Mark Wahlberg better than DiCaprio).