Game of Thrones – S6E1 – The Red Woman – Recap

It’s finally here! The return of Game of Thrones! And the return of my recaps! You might remember that in order to get over some serious Games of Thrones withdrawal between seasons 4 and 5, I started reading the books. The withdrawal hit even harder between seasons 5 and 6, and I’m happy to report that I am now caught up on all the books that have been published to date. That’s right, I’m now one of those “That’s now they did in the books” people. Yay. Um. Hey, where are you going?

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Don’t worry, I still plan to keep these recaps full of the humor you’ve come to expect, but I might actually remember a name or two now (though Margaery will ALWAYS be Princess Low Cut).

Thanks for joining me for another season. Please enjoy…

Wow, that was one long ass Previously on Game of Thrones to start the episode. Did they show a scene from every episode of the series? Is a long Previously on… supposed to make it easier to tell all the brunette northmen with beards apart from each other? Or is it for people who are checking Game of Thrones out for the first time and thinking, “I’ll just jump in on this show 6 seasons in.” Smart choice there, big guy. Thankfully the Previously on… finally ends and the opening credits start. We can all agree these are the coolest opening credits of any TV show ever, right?

The episode starts on the Wall. Where else would it start? My friends, family, coworkers, casual acquaintances,  baristas and I have been theorizing for 10 months as to whether or not Jon Snow is dead. If the episode started anywhere else in the Seven Kingdoms, I would have thrown a Joffrey-sized fit!

Jon is bleeding out in the snow while Ghost howls mournfully. Davos is the first to find Jon. Jon’s friends including Dolorous Edd (see, I told you I read the books! How else would I know Dolorous Edd’s name?) are the next on the scene. None of the guys who stabbed Jon show up here. They must have all been like, “Sweet, he’s dead. Let’s leave the body here and get a nap in.” There is A LOT of blood under Jon. Despite there being more blood left on the snow than still in Jon Snow, Davos is convinced that Jon is only mostly dead and calls for Miracle Max, sorry I mean he calls for Melisandre, aka Smoky Vajayjay. I don’t care how many books I read, she will always be Smoky Vajayjay. Just like Miracle Max with Westley, Smoky Vajayjay has some hesitations about bringing Jon back.

In a meeting of the brothers later that morning, Thorne flat out admits to killing Jon. Interesting strategy there, Alliser. Amazingly, it works. People who were ready to kill Thorne seconds before this are suddenly like, “You know what? He’s right. Jon Snow had to die.” Apparently Jedi mind tricks exist in Westeros. While Thorne is explaining why they had to kill Jon, that asshole kid who stabbed Jon and shot the arrow that killed Ygritte looks on all smug. I get it, you hit your growth spurt in the off-season and you’re feeling all swagger about it, but I really want someone to hit you in your face.

Davos realizes his small group can’t take on Thorne alone. He needs the wildlings to back him up. One of the brothers still loyal to Jon goes off to find them.

Down in Winterfell, Ramsey is mourning the death of that bitchy girlfriend of his, Myranda. Seriously Ramsey, you are the only one who liked her. The only one. Some dude who looks like John Malkovich looks on. Oh, he’s the Bolton’s maester. Maester Malkovich tells Ramsey that see that Myranda’s body is properly laid to rest. Ramsey tells him to feed Myranda to his hounds; she’s good meat. Just in case you ever forget that Ramsey is crazy and the worst, the writers of the show make sure you remember with scenes like this one.

Roose Bolton meets with Ramsey. Roose wants to know who killed Stannis. I was very surprised that Ramsey didn’t take the credit and tells his father that he doesn’t know. Roose needs the North united behind him, and for that he need Sansa Stark. Retrieving her is his top priority for Ramsey.

game of thrones s6e1 theon and sansa go swimming

Speaking of Sansa, she and Theon are fleeing, with Ramsey’s hounds in hot pursuit. Theon convinces Sansa to wade through a freezing river in order to lose the dogs. Hmm, looks like Theon has been reading Living With a SEAL. I love that book. Theon and Sansa hide in the trunk of a giant, overturned tree. Despite Theon and Sansa’s ice bath, the dogs are catching up. Theon decides to sacrifice himself for Sansa. He tells her to hide, then run. He then heads straight for Ramsey’s men. One of the men jokes that he’s wondering what Ramsey will cut off Theon next. The men want to know where Sansa is. Theon lies, and tells them that she broke her leg and died as they were escaping. They don’t believe him. And that’s when Theon finds out that hunting hounds can pick up a scent that’s 15 feet away. Oh come on! All this and now Sansa and Theon are going back to Ramsey?!?

game of thrones s6e1 sansa and theon hiding in tree

And then Brienne and Pod save them! Wooooo! Brienne is getting all the love from fans for this scene, but I just want to point out that Pod actually managed to stay on his horse. Someone give it up for Pod. After Brienne and Pod kill all of Ramsey’s men, Brienne lays her sword at Sansa’s feet NEW TEAM UP!!!!

Down in King’s Landing, Jaime’s boat is pulling into port. Cersei runs down to meet them. She can immediately tell something is wrong when she sees the look on her lover/brother’s face and that casket behind him. Side note: was Bronn on the boat in this scene? Did anyone spot him? I didn’t think to look for him until afterwards.

game of thrones s6e1 jaime and cersei

I’m really feeling for Jaime and Cersei right now…and damn it, Game of Thrones, you did it again! Making me feel all mushy for Westeros’s favorite incest couple. But really, right now, I want a Tarantino directed Jaime and Cersei buddy road movie. Leave King’s Landing behind and travel Westeros with a sword and a lot of sass.

Princess Low Cut is in jail. Ooo, she’s dirty, and not in the fun way. She looks like she’s been sleeping in my daughter’s diapers. The used ones. A septa keeps telling her to confess. The High Septon visits. He’s playing the good cop to the septa’s bad cop. But his message is the same, he wants Princess Low Cut to confess.

Over in Dorne, the Dornish Prince and Slutty Princess Leia are getting along way too well. Okay, okay, I said last season I’d stop calling her Slutty Princess Leia. She’s been in mourning since the Red Viper died and hasn’t worn anything approaching Leia’s slave girl outfit from Jabba’s throne room in over a season. Anyone have a good nickname for her? Otherwise, Ellaria it is.

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Anyway, Ellaria and Prince Doran (really? The Prince of Dorne is named Doran? That would be like Queen Elizabeth being named Brittany) are getting along WAY too well. Oh. Wait. The Sand Snakes kill Doran’s big black bodyguard and then kill him too. People who usually hate each other suddenly getting along is to Game of Thrones what getting over your father issues it to Lost; it means someone’s about to die. Going by how many people rise up to stop Ellaria from killing the prince, it seems like the prince’s bodyguard was the only person in his corner in all of Dorne. Well, maybe the bodyguard and Trystane, his son.

Speaking of Trystane, two of the Sand Snakes bust in on Prince Trystane and tell him he gets to decide who kills him. He picks whip. Spear then spears him in the back of the head. Classic Spear.

Remember last season when every time they would cut to Dorne, and we’d all be like, “Ugh, this story again. Just kill them all off!” Well, it looks like someone was listening.

In Mereen, there’s no sign of Dany. Tyrion and Varys walk the streets. Mereen has seen better days. This scene is shot in a very cool way. Lots of long shots, sometimes partially obstructed, making it seem like there are many eyes of Varys and Tyrion everywhere they turn. I kept waiting for a Sons of the Harpy ambush, but none came. Tyrion has a funny exchange with a homeless mother in which he tries telling her, “I want to feed your baby,” but it comes out, “I want to eat your baby.” Such a small change, such a big difference.

games of thrones s6e1 i want to eat your baby

Daario and Friend Zone are riding around looking for Dany in the countryside. They spot a burnt carcass of a ram, surely the work of a dragon and not a barbecue pit! They find Dany’s dropped ring, but no Dany.

That’s because Dany is being marched in chains by the Dothraki. They whip her. They have no idea who she is. She maintains her cool despite them telling her that they plan on raping her. The two Dothraki present them before their Khal. Dany makes her play. She announces who she is. They all laugh, but the Khal believes her. It announces that is is forbidden to lie with a Khal’s widow and that none of his men shall touch her. Point: Dany. He then tells Dany he’s taking her to where all the widows of Khals go to to get old and die. Point: not Dany.

game of thrones s6e1 dany

In Braavos, Arya is blind and begging. That mean waif from the temple shows up and beats her with a staff. The waif gives Arya a staff and tells her to fight. Arya says that she can’t see. The waif says that isn’t her problem. Good one, waif. Don’t you get it, Arya? You’re still being trained! The waif beats her senseless and then says, “See you tomorrow.” Good pun, waif.

game of thrones s6e1 arya

At the Wall, Thorne tries getting into Davo’s room. Thorne says he promises they won’t kill everyone in the room. Unlike the people in the old SNL Land Shark sketches, Davos doesn’t fall for it. Good man, Davos. Still, it’s a half dozen of them and Ghost against the rest of the Night’s Watch. Thorne tells them to surrender by nightfall.

Smoky Vajajay is looking at her fire. She hasn’t been the same since Stannis lost his big battle with the Boltons. She gets up, looks at herself in the mirror and disrobes. The viewing audience is getting quite a show. She removes her necklace and suddenly she’s old and wrinkled. I mean really old and really wrinkled. Maybe it’s good Stannis didn’t live long enough to see who he really had sex with. What a bait and switch! The audience thought they were getting Smoky Vajajay naked but now we’re looking at this old naked lady and her old naked butt. Point: Game of Thrones. Naked Butt heads to bed. Hellllooooo, you need to revive Jon Snow!

game of thrones s6e1 old mel

Melisandre looking old once she took off her necklace made me think of something from the books that hasn’t been included in the show. In the books, it’s revealed that it wasn’t Mance Raydar killed by Stannis in the bonfire, but actually the Lord of Bones, a character that I do not believe made it into the show. Melisandre wove a glamour around Mance to shift the light around him so that people saw the Lord of Bones and vice versa too; when people looked at the Lord of Bones, her glamour made them think they were seeing Mance Raydar. This is so that Mance Raydar can go off on quest for Jon. Like many stories in these very long books, this storyline was streamlined for TV, and Melisandre never really goes into how her glamours work on the show. This is a long winded way of me saying that I don’t think that the necklace was keeping Melisandre young, but rather that she always looks like an a very old and weathered crone, because that is what she is. I think there is a glamour woven into her necklace, the one with the stone that burns like fire. It bends the light around her so that people see what she wants them to see, a much younger and more beautiful woman. But now that Melisandre is having this extreme crisis of faith, she’s worn down and beaten, and just doesn’t care enough to keep the glamour going. There’s no need to put on airs when everything you believed in has been taken from you. But that’s just my theory.