This Memorial Day, we commemorate the fallen at the Battle of Blackwater Bay
Holy shit guys. Ready? Because GRRM wrote this shit, and it's quotable and amazing. Also, the recap is expedited a bit thanks to the fact that we're staying in King's Landing all night, so I don't have to keep switching locations. Also, I apologise, this recap cannot do justice to the tension contained in tonight's episode
Caution: Game of Thrones SPOILERS AHOY!
Blackwater Bay. Night. Davos is aboard his ship, discussing strategy with his insufferable son Matthos. Matthos says he's coming home, but Davos points out that he was a smuggler, and was usually dodging the royal fleet, not facing it head on. Matthos then says that they are the royal fleet, and Davos mentions that there's several of those right now. I applaud Davos for being the pragmatic soul he is.
Tyrion lies with Shae and frets a bit about the loss of his head.
Pycell enters Cercei's room, and tells her to be patient and such, but she interrupts him before he can wax too philosophical. He gives her nightshade. She shoos him off so she can drink wine. A nice game for this episode is to drink every time someone else calls for a drink.
The Lannister men, including Bronn, are preparing for battle with ale (drink) and whores as they sing The Rains of Castamere, a song about Tywin Lannister and how he will not put up with your shit. Bronn talks about his broken nose while undressing a whore. Boobies! Butt! Sandor Clegane shows up. He gives Bronn the stink eye, though Bronn appears to be tolerably friendly towards him. There are some not-so-subtle dick jokes. The Hound rambles on some more about how they are all killers who love killing. He and Bronn appear to be about to face off (which, when did their enmity start? It's sort of random and pointless.) The bells toll before they can fight each other.
Varys prattles about his dislike for bells as Tyrion is suited up by Podrick Payne, whom he says he trusts. Varys gives him a map of the tunnels beneath the city, and makes mention of Mellisandre and her powers. Tyrion thinks magic is stupid. Varys says he believes in Tyrion, which is kind of nice of him, though Tyrion looks like this information is alarming. He grabs his axe and heads out.
Bells ring out over the bay. The drums fire up as Stannis's ships sail to King's Landing.
Tyrion starts reminding Bronn of the plan. He calls Bronn his friend, and they exchange witty banter, because we always need comic relief. Shae and Sansa pass by, and Tyrion speaks to Sansa, telling her to stay brave and safe in the Sept. She nods, and calls to him, "I will pray for your safe return my lord, just as I pay for the king's." Tyrion, who is not an idiot, understands she's praying for his death, but is understanding of it. Shae tells him to be safe while Joff makes Sansa kiss his shiny new sword Hearteater. Sansa lives up to her redheadedness and acts feisty and it's pretty awesome.
The battlements are busy. They look over the bay. Joff goads Tyrion on a bit, which leads to Tyrion saying he wouldn't actually mind Joff's head on a spike, if it didn't also mean his own head on one.
Sansa complains to Shae about Cercei being mean to her. Shae says she's jealous. Women, amirite? Cercei calls Sansa over to make gross allusions to her period. She also pours her some wine (drink). Sansa asks why Ser Ilyn is there and gets a half-assed answer about protecting them. Someone comes in to tell Cercei that traitors have been found. She sends Ilyn to behead them, while telling Sansa that it is best to be feared more than anyone else. Machiavelli would've liked Cercei very much.
On the battlements, Sandor Clegane, Ser Lancel, King Penis, and Tyrion overlook the bay. Stannis's fleet rolls in and the archers take their places. Stannis stands aboard his ship with a smug smile on his face. He expects an easy victory, as his fleet is extensive and his men outnumber those in King's Landing by an order of magnitude.
Ready for some tension? The calm before the storm. A single unmanned ship is in the bay. Davos and Joffery both wonder why. Davos sees the Wildfire pouring into the bay, but reacts too late. Tyrion gives the signal. Bronn fires a single arrow. BOOM!
Pyromotherfuckingtechnics fill the bay. Red and green fire everywhere. Tyrion seems surprised it worked. Stannis, who is on a ship safely in the distance, says it was a trick that could only be played once, and they must still land, though many of his men will die. His rally speech is simple and to the point- "Come with me and take this city."
In the sept with the women, Cercei is getting toasted while Sansa prays. Cercei is drunkkkk (drink). She tells Sansa that praying is stupid. (drink) She says she should've been born a man. Discusses seducing Stannis's horse (drink). Cercei is insane with fear and wine, and it is terrifying Sansa. (drink)
Stannis rows to shore, leading his men. The city archers loose their arrows. Rocks get dropped like the bass. Stannis commands his men to the Mud Gate, and Clegane comes out to meet them and yells, "Any man with a clean sword, I'll rape his fucking corpse!" The man's a poet. Lancel is shot early on and he bails.
Cercei calls Shae over, who does a bad curtsy. Cercei teaches her the proper way and asks when she left Lorath. She is suspicious how a commoner got to be a handmaiden in the Red Keep. Fortunately Lancel interrupts them before Shae has to make up a story. He tells them that Stannis has landed, and Cercei says Joffery must be brought in. She also explains to Sansa that Ser Ilyn will cut off their heads if Stannis gets into the city.
In the battle, the Hound is kicking SO much ass, but unfortunately he is afraid of fire. Bronn is also doing a nice job killin' folk. Clegane freaks out and brings his men inside again. Stannis gets ladders.
Clegane calls for a drink (drink). Gets water. Wants wine (drink). Tyrion yells at him for being inside the city wall. Joff tries to command him out, but Clegane's fear of fire is much more powerful than whatever his weird obediance to Joffery is. Ever the poet, he says, "Fuck the kingsguard. Fuck the city. Fuck the king." Joff is...astonished.
Stannis's men hide under the boats to protect from the arrows while they ram the mud gate. It's bedlam out there.
Lancel comes for Joffery. Tyrion tells him not to hide but to lead his men. Joff is clearly terrified. He commands Ser Mandon Moore (is his name a reference to Mandy Moore?) to represent him on the field of battle and peaces out. The men of King's Landing ask why they should fight if their king is gone. Tyrion volunteers to lead the attack. They are dubious and don't form up when he calls for it, but he insults them and rallies them in a slightly more inspired speech than Stannis's. Best lines? "Brave men are knocking at the door- let's go kill them!" or possibly, "There's another way, we'll sneak up behind them and fuck them in their arses." Tyrion for president 2012!
Lancel tells Cercei that Stannis is at the city gates. She flees, leaving distraught women behind. Sansa tells the women not to fear and leads them in a hymn. Shae tells her to hide in her chamber because Stannis won't hurt her. He may not kill her, but her brother's still claming kingship in the north, so that logic may not be 100% infallible, but she's probably a good deal safer than the Lannisers.
Sansa runs to her chamber, terrified. She finds the doll Ned got her back in the first season. The Hound is waiting in her room and startles her. He tells her he's leaving for a place that isn't burning, perhaps in the north, and offers to take Sansa with him to Winterfell. She says she's safe enough there. He reminds her everyone is a killer. He's still on that point? She says he won't hurt her, and he agrees, but leaves.
Tyrion's men sneak through the tunnels. He cuts off some guy's leg with his axe. They fight those at the walls and win, but Tyrion turns. "Oh, fuck me." The rest of Stannis's extensive forces are running towards them. Tyrion gets in a scuffle and escapes. He smiles at Ser Mandon, who out of nowhere slices at Tyrion, cutting across his face. Podrick Payne saves him from straight murder.
Cercei sits upon the Iron Throne with Tommen in her lap. This whole scene is so fucking epic. She tells him a story about a mother lion with her cub, keeping him safe from the stags and the wolves in the woods. As she tells her story, we see Tyrion is passing out, and we see men marching upon the city, cutting down soldiers right and left. Fantastic fucking imagery of the chaos of battle. She undoes the vial of poison. She hands it to Tommen right as the throne room doors open and men march in. She's terrified. The knight leading the party removes his helmet- it's Ser Loras and the Tyrells. At the walls, Stannis's men pull him back while he laments. Tyrion's eyes close. Tywin Lannister marches the fuck into the room. "The battle is over. We have won."
Credits, and The National sing The Rains of Castamere again to us, just in case we forgot that Tywin Lannister is not to be fucked with.
I've watched this episode twice already and I'm probably going to watch it again later while I'm doped up on percocet. I admit I'm still a little disappointed that Tyrion didn't get his chain, but marching in from behind was still pretty great, especially when he cut off some dude's leg. And Cercei, as much of a bitch as she is, was fantastic in her inebriated fear. Even Sansa was a bit feisty, and of course Tyrion was his usually Tyrion-y self. I wish The Hound and Sansa had the same level of chemistry as Tywin and Arya, though. Their scene felt the most flat in an overall impressive episode. Also I don't really get why he and Bronn had a face-off. But fuck. That was awesome.
Next week is the season finale. Brace yourselves, cliffhangers are coming.
Written or Contributed by: Dr. Improbable