Warning: Spoilers ahead if you have not yet watched Season 7, Episode 4.
Wow. That's the only word we can muster up after that incredible episode, which was the shortest in the history of Game of Thrones. Although it was leaked earlier in the week by hackers, we managed to stay out of earshot of any spoilers and felt the full impact of everything that happened. Read on for a recap of "The Spoils of War," and to see what our favorite quote of the night was.
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We start the episode with the Lannister army marching back toward King's Landing. Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) got the gold Cersei needs to pay back the Iron Bank. In a bit of foreshadowing, we cut to Cersei (Lena Headey) and the bank rep waiting to get paid. "You can count on the Iron Bank's support," he says. "As long as the gold arrives." But will it arrive? That is the question.
We next go to Winterfell where Littlefinger is trying to work his magic on Bran (Isaac Hempstead-Wright). He tells him he would've saved his mother if he could have and that he will do anything to help him now. Bran is not buying it though, and he creeps Lord Baelish out when he references something he's said in the past. Baelish ends up giving him the dagger that almost killed him in a sneak attack back in season one.
Meera then comes in to say she's leaving, which Bran knew already (of course). It isn't a very warm goodbye on Bran's end, which upsets Meera considering all that she—and her brother—did for him. He says he's not Brandon Stark anymore. "You died in that cave," Meera says.
Cut to Arya (Maisie Williams) as she's overlooking Winterfell and we unanimously scream, SHE'S HOME!!! This is a reunion we've been waiting for since the Stark clan was broken up in season one. She arrives at the gate, but the two guards there won't let her in, telling her she can't possibly be Arya Stark because Arya Stark is dead (lol, no she's not, guys). She finally finagles her way in, and once they've turned their backs, she vanishes.
When the guards go to tell Sansa (Sophie Turner) what happened, she says she knows where she is, and goes straight to the crypt, where, lo and behold, she finds her long lost sis. We were hoping for tears, but we suppose these girls have been through too much to be able to cry for this sort of thing. They do both look genuinely happy though, so we'll settle for that.
Sansa takes Arya to go see Bran, who's sitting pensively out at the creepy weirwood tree. "I saw you at the crossroads," he says. He mentions Arya's kill list, which freaks her out, because how could he know?
Over on Dragonstone, Dany (Emilia Clarke) and Missandei (Nathalie Emmanuel) are having some girl talk, and the queen asks about what's going on with her and Grey Worm. Jon (Kit Harington) takes Dany down into the mines to see the dragonglass, where he also has something else to show her. There are cave drawings by the Children of the Forest, and they show how the Children worked together with the First Men to defeat the White Walkers. Jon uses this to make a case for why they need to work together, and she agrees, but still, she won't let up on that whole 'bending the knee' thing.
After some pretty steamy eye contact, the two come out of the cave to find a solemn-looking Tyrion (Peter Dinklage). He has found out what happened last week when the Unsullied army took Casterly Rock, only to be trapped there with no food. Dany is pissed. She's clearly losing this war, and she wants to use her dragons to help her win.
"Enough with the clever plans," she says. "I have three large dragons, I'm going to fly them to the Red Keep." Tyrion doesn't think it's such a good idea. "My enemies are in the Red Keep. What kind of a queen am I if I'm not willing to risk my life to fight them?" "A smart one," says Tyrion.
Surprisingly, she asks Jon his opinion of the matter. He reminds her that she made something impossible happen when she brought her dragons to life, and says she can do it again. But he says that if she uses her dragons to burn cities where innocent people will die, it won't make her different from anyone else fighting this war. As much as we want to see her get back at Cersei, we agree with Jon on this one.
Back in Winterfell, Arya sees Brienne having a sword lesson with Podrick, and she wants her own turn to fight with the legendary swordswoman. Girlfriend has picked up her own set of skills over the years, and it shows. The two duke it out and they're both impressive, especially Arya who dodges and ducks past Brienne's every move. "Who taught you how to do that?" asks Brienne. "No one," replies Arya, and we've got to chuckle at that.
Cut back to Dragonstone where Jon and Ser Davos are having boy talk about Dany, and it seems we're not the only ones who noticed the chemistry between the two leaders. Davos asks what Jon thinks of Khaleesi, and he says that he thinks she has a good heart. "I noticed you staring at her good heart," quips Davos.
Suddenly they see a Greyjoy ship on the horizon. Theon (Alfie Allen) arrives with his men who rescued him after his uncle's attack, and we realize this episode is giving us another reunion of sorts. It's not a very happy one, though, since Jon wants to kill Theon because he betrayed the Starks back in season two. The only reason he's not going to kill him is because he rescued Sansa. Phew.
The episode ends with an insane battle involving the best possible weapon: dragons. We haven't really gotten to see them in their full glory, so this is something we've been waiting for.
We come upon Jaime and Bronn again, who suddenly hear something in the distance and realize what's about to happen. They get their army ready for attack, and that's when we see them coming: Dany's Dothraki horde (OK but seriously, how did they get there so fast?) Our hearts are literally pounding out of our chests as they ride in, flanked by Dany and her dragons. We scream with excitement. Dany is riding on her beloved Drogon's back and it's all we could have asked for.
The dragons set everything and everyone ablaze. Our hearts are pounding as the Dothraki ride through the flames, standing atop their horses backs and doing what they do best: fighting. For the first time, we really get to see the Dothraki in true battle form, and it's pretty glorious. Men are being torched and speared left and right, and although we are rooting for Dany, it's a pretty brutal scene to watch.
Bronn somehow makes his way to the dragon-killing machine we saw two episodes ago. He readies one of the huge bows and takes a shot at Drogon but misses, and we breathe a sigh of relief. As much as we like Bronn, we are not mentally prepared for Khaleesi to lose one of her dragons. His next shot hits Drogon, though, and we panic as he starts falling through the sky. Luckily it wasn't a fatal wound, but Dany dismounts to take out the massive arrow.
Jaime sees his chance at an unarmed and vulnerable Daenerys, and he rides straight for her. We are on the edge of our seats as he closes in on her, but luckily Drogon has some fight left in him and his throat glows as he breathes fire out on Jaime. But, just in the nick of time, someone (was that you, Bronn?) tackles Jaime out of harms way and they fall into a lake, which seemingly came out of nowhere.
And that's where the episode ends, with Jaime sinking into darkness. We'll have to wait until next week to see if he makes it out alive, if Cersei gets her gold, and what aftermath is in store after the Loot Train Battle.