The finale of the fifth season of Game of Thrones has left viewers with more questions than answers. The shocking scenes and unforeseen deaths that made up “Mother’s Mercy” caused the internet go berserk, and my little heart to break.
Spoilers ahead, including major character death.
When I left you last week, I was on cloud nine. I was ecstatic about Dany finally riding one of her dragons—I was so excited that it eclipsed the terrible death of Princess Shireen. But “Mother’s Mercy” brought me back to the ground, and the second I stepped down, I landed in this giant pile of shit.
Instead of writing this recap, I wanted to do ^that^ to my laptop.
On the Road from Castle Black
The ice is melting at Stannis’s camp, and it seems like it’s a result of the sacrifice of Shireen. He tells the Red Woman he’s ready to march on Winterfell. Before they depart, he is told by his soldiers that they discovered the body of his wife. In the wake of Shireen’s death, Selyse hung herself.
So, Stannis. Now you have no one but yourself and the poisonous Melisandre. How does that feel? I hope it feels as shitty as this episode.
The Boltons are preparing to fight against the oncoming army. Using their preoccupation to her advantage, Sansa breaks out of her room in order to light a candle in the broken tower. Unfortunately, Brienne doesn’t see it because she was distracted when she saw Stannis’s army approaching from the North.
Sansa abandons the candle when she sees that the Boltons are marching out of the gate to meet Stannis. She tries to escape, but is caught by Myranda, Ramsay’s ex-girlfriend. Myranda threatens Sansa, and is about to shoot her with an arrow when Reek shoves the crazy bitch over the landing to the courtyard floor. She dies upon impact. He and Sansa join hands and jump over the castle wall to avoid being seeing by the returning troops.
During the fight, the Boltons decimated Stannis’s army, and the man himself is severely injured. Brienne shows up and sentences him to death for using black magic to kill his brother Renly. We see her swing the sword, but we don’t actually see him die.
Samwell asks Jon to send him, Gilly, and Baby Sam away to Oldtown so that he can become a Maester. Jon agrees, although sadly. After they’ve departed, the Onion Knight arrives and asks Jon for soldiers and supplies, obviously having no idea about what has just happened at Winterfell. As Jon is saying that it’s impossible, the Red Woman appears on horseback. She doesn’t say anything, but by her silence confirms the deaths of both Stannis and Shireen.
That night, Olly comes to fetch Jon saying that there’s a wildling asking for him who claims he knows where Jon’s uncle, Benjen Stark, is. Jon comes running out, only to find that a handful of the Night’s Watch are waiting in ambush. One by one, they stab him and say “for the watch,” in retaliation for his bringing the wildlings to their door. Even that little motherfucker Olly stabs him. Jon falls to the ground, seemingly dead.
Jaime, Bronn, Myrcella, and Trystane are preparing to depart from Dorne. Before they leave, Ellaria gives Myrcella a kiss and apologizes for her earlier behavior. They get on board, and in a touching scene, Jaime tries to tell Myrcella that he’s actually her father. She beats him to it, and says that she guessed as much, and is glad that he’s her father. As they’re having a sweet embrace, she suddenly starts bleeding from her nose before collapsing.
Back at the docks, Ellaria wipes her lips clean before swallowing an antidote.
Hungry, tired, and abused, Cersei finally confesses to the High Sparrow her sin of fornication with her cousin Lancel (while still firmly denying her involvement with her brother). The High Sparrow accepts her confession but tells her that she still has to undergo a trial. He will permit her to return to her home in the Red Keep until that time comes, but to get there, she must walk. Barefoot. Naked. Through the angry crowds of King’s Landing. While they throw shit at her. Because utter humiliation, forced degredation, and maltreatment are obviously equal to adultery.
It was a brutal scene, and one that is apparently quite true to the books. While it was difficult to watch, I have to commend Lena Headey. It was every bit as emotional and tragic as it was harrowing and barbaric—I have a new level of feeling for Cersei, who only wants to be reunited with her children.
Across the Narrow Sea
Arya sneaks into the brothel to kill Meryn, disguised as the sort of young girl he lusts after. She gouges out his eyes and stabs him several times before slitting his throat. Although he deserved it, it was a pretty nasty way to die, and almost as gross as Oberyn’s skull being crushed. Yuck.
Arya is feeling pretty good about herself, until she is approached by Jaqen at the House of Black and White. He knows who she killed, as well as the fact that she stole a face from that creepy room (you know, the one full of faces) to accomplish her mission. He says that she took the wrong life, and after a bit of a mind-fucking scene, she starts to lose her sight.
Team Targaryen (i.e. what we will call Daario, Jorah, Tyrion, Missandei, and Grey Worm until further notice) are waiting for Dany to come back, but there is no sign of her. Jorah and Dario go out to find her, leaving Tyrion in control of the city along with Grey Worm and Missandei. Tyrion is feeling out of his depth for the first time in a long time—although he is good at jobs like this one, in the past he has had resources available to him that he doesn’t have now, such as the Spider and his vast spy network. Just as he is looking wistful, likely thinking that he could use someone like Varys, the man himself shows up. Bromance, anyone?
Meanwhile, Dany and Drogon are somewhere green, probably nowhere near Meereen. She wants him to fly her home, but he’s just eaten and is tired. She leaves him to nap and goes in search of food, when she is suddenly surrounded by hundreds of Dothraki. Are they friend or foe? Are they those who were loyal to her husband, but not to her? Are they a different tribe? DO THEY KNOW SHE IS THE MOTHER OF DRAGONS?
We don’t know. That’s right, cause this finale didn’t answer a single damn thing.
Shit I would like answered:
1.) Is Stannis really dead, or did Brienne chicken out?
2.) Is Sansa dead? Broken leg? SHE JUMPED OFF A WALL.
3.) What about Reek?
4.) Is Jon Snow dead? (Yeah, yeah, I know Kit Harrington said he isn’t coming back. Whatever.)
5.) Where the fuck was Ghost?
6.) Is Arya’s blindness temporary or permanent?
7.) Where the fuck is Bran?
8.) Where the fuck is Rickon?
9.) Is Margaery still in the dungeon? What about her brother?
10.) Did Petyr get lost in that brothel of his?
I’m waiting for answers, George R. R. Martin. Showrunners? ANYBODY?
Until next summer,
The Collected Mutineer
P.S. If you have fan theories, please share them with us on Twitter!