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Game Of Thrones Season 6 Episode #08 – No One Review

7 min read

Game of Thrones Season 6 Episode 8“You’re shit at dying, you know that?” Oh, Sandor, never change.

What They Say:
No One – Jaime weighs his options; Cersei answers a request; Tyrion’s plans bear fruit; Arya faces a new test.

The Review:
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
As we barrel through toward the end of the season at what always feels like a breakneck pace, Game of Thrones has been doing a whole lot that I like across the board. While I would like a few more bigger moments throughout the season, we’ve had a lot of really great smaller moments that deliver as paths begin to firm up as you can see the endgames coming into play – with some twists certainly to be in the mix. The big thrill in its own weird way has been the resurgence of characters not seen since the second season. While there’s a lot to like with the return of Sandor Clegane, I’m just enjoying the dips into the Frey’s and elsewhere as these were small but pivotal roles early on that set so much of the wars that were going on into various directions. Bringing them back is a great little memory jog as to how we got here.

Arya’s survival certainly was a given, at least at this stage, as you know that her story couldn’t end with so little closure or sense about it. Having her sneak back, barely, to where the play is put on and being rescued by Lady Crane is a weird kind of karma all of its own. With Arya having helped her, there’s obviously the idea of Arya being paid back and Crane is good at mending her. Arya’s offered an interesting angle to pursue with the troupe going to Pentos next, but she’s also smart enough to know that she’s going to be chased until she deals with the nameless girl, so she doesn’t want anyone getting caught up in this. Arya’s sense of honor is a solid enough one and we get some neat little bits mixed into all of this, such as talk of what’s west of Westeros and her taking a little milky poppy in order to sleep and heal, resulting in her truly trusting Lady Crane.

With a lot of small movements afoot, such as Sandor going after those that killed those near him recently and seeing Varys heading off on a secret mission to Westeros, there are plenty of things setting what’s to come. The big fun early on is seeing the Faithful Militant coming to bring Cersei back to the Sept to see the High Sparrow, making sure that she understands it’s not a request. It’s a complicated moment since Lancel is one of the Faithful and Cersei is intent on going nowhere. This is where we finally get to see the Mountain in action as he is now, as he’s never far from Cersei at this point. It’s a brief bit of action but just seeing the power and intensity within him and how brutal he can be makes for an engaging sequence. Cersei’s beginning to regain her role in events and is ensuring that she’s taking control.

Where things are getting more complicated is when Brienne and Pod arrive to gain an ally with the Blackfish only to have to deal with Jaime and the others. There’s a lot of really fun stuff with Pod here before we get into Brienne and Jaime where she’s coming up with a surprisingly cunning plan to resolve all of their problems, at least in the short term. The two certainly have an amusing relationship, one where Jaime is a bit different than how he was back when he lost his hand, but it’s good to see some closure of sorts when it comes to her completing the mission he gave her, the oath to Catelyn, and a smart nod toward just what kind of woman Sansa really is. Sansa’s own complication in regard to Cersei is also given at least a nod, but it’s the kind of thing where it’s best to deal with it at a later time should it come to that.

Brienne is definitely a force of nature all on her own and seeing her finally make her way to the Blackfish and make her case. It’s great to see her involved in the politics side a bit since she stands out amid it, mostly because she is definitely more blunt and honest and that comes through, especially to someone like Blackfish as he recognizes it. There are a lot of pieces moving when it comes to the war that Sansa is preparing for and it’s good and bad to see that not all of them are moving as they should be. Seeing this with the time we get with Jaime dealing with Edmure shows how both of them are trying to do the right thing but are so deeply set in what’s gone on in the past, amid a war, makes it quite complicated to be sure. It’s a wonderful moment for Edmure in that he finally gets to say so much that he’s wanted to say for so long, and Jaime actually takes it all in and you know it makes an impact. Still, Jaime makes it clear that he’s fully interested in ending this fight with Blackfish and reveals it in a very brutal way, one that reminds us just who he is even after all the softening and humanizing that we’ve gotten.

Yet, as we see, it’s that cold nature that will give him the castle without shedding a huge amount of blood. You can understand why all sides act like they do, especially Edmure in that he really understands that there’s no winning here, but it’s going to cost the Tully name massively in the long run. What’s unfortunate is that while the Blackfish helps Brienne and Pod escape, something that Jaime does see, the Blackfish’s fight against the Lannisters is all off screen. His talk of wanting a good fight leaves you hopeful that we’ll get it, but the reality is undercut by this move. I get it, but at the same time I wanted that good death to come for him.

Events in Meereen have certainly settled recently with the pact that Tyrion has made and that allows us for a little respite, which is definitely welcome because it means we get Tyrion telling jokes. And actually managing to get Missandei to tell one after drinking some wine while Grey Worm does his best to remain stoic. Even he is not impervious to her smile and laughter though, which is a great moment for both of them. It’s a simple bit of dialogue that I imagine bothers a lot of people as it’s seemingly like a time waster, but it works to really show more facets of the characters in natural and fun ways. Not that it will last since the bell tolls and a fleet of ships are arriving in the bay, believed to be the Masters come back to relcaim what is properly theirs. It’s a brutal fight to be sure with the way the Masters bombard the city while options are minimal beyond defending the pyramid. So it’s all kinds of wonderful with Daeny arrives on the pyramid on a dragon, changing the tone of the fight that’s about to begin. It’s a good setup for what’s to come.

I love that the show spends the right amount of time with Sandor as he tracks the group that killed the sept and its villagers. When he comes across the main trio later on it turns out that they’ve already been captured by Beric and the other members of the Brotherhood and are about to be executed by hanging. The horse trading that goes on for Sandor to get his revenge is wonderfully done and just seeing him hanging out with them for a bit to get some food reveals just a bit more about the dynamic between him and Beric and the Brotherhood. It’s hard to imagine that Sandor would get drawn into them and their goals, but at the same time there’s that sense that he may find purpose through it and that’s something that on some level that he’s really craving after everything else that has gone on and what he’s lost.

In Summary:
As we race closer to the end of the season, I’ll admit I had expected something of a bigger episode this time around overall. There are some very good moments here, especially everything with Jaime and the castle that they’re dealing with as it involves a good range of characters, dialogue, and changes to events that work really well. The small moments dominate in a good way here across the board and the few big moments we do get, such as within the bay of Meereen and the action with Arya and the nameless girl chasing her, it adds some really good aspects to the episode to connect us to it in a great way. At this point, Arya just comes across as almost indestructible, though fully capable of great pain. Next week looks to be the big action episode of the season with some potential changes in the mix for the characters, which is definitely exciting.

Grade: B+