The penultimate episode of each Game of Thrones season is usually packed with plenty of death, danger, and destruction, and Beyond the Wall stays true to that tradition. If you haven’t watch episode 6 yet, turn away now as there are MAJOR spoilers to follow. In-between all the revelations, budding romances, and teleporting antics, this episode presents a few questions which need clearing up - is Arya going to betray Sansa? Why did those wights turn to ash? Which dragon (*sob*) died? All this and more below. Looking for a more detailed breakdown? Check out our Game of Thrones season 7 episode 6 review now.
1. Will Arya show Sansa’s note to anyone?
This is exactly what Arya threatened to do when she confronted Sansa about the note she found in the last episode. You know, the one Cersei forced her to write to Robb in support of the Lannisters. Instead of seeing that she’s being played expertly by Littlefinger, Arya’s too busy tormenting her older sister (who, let’s be honest, has been through enough) with the idea that she’ll reveal to everyone at Winterfell that she betrayed her family. As Littlefinger points out, Arya’s unlikely to follow through on her threat and put her sister in harm’s way - if she was going to tell anyone about the note, she’s have done it already - but that doesn’t mean she’s above using it to keep Sansa in line and stop her from what she believes her sister is planning; to betray Jon and take over the North.
2. Who would succeed Daenerys if something happened to her?
Tyrion raises an interesting question in this week’s episode - who is Dany’s successor? With people dropping like flies in the land of Westeros, most Houses don’t have a traditional successor lined up (AKA, a child born from legal wedlock), but most know that once the war is won/lost/over (delete as appropriate) there’ll be plenty of time to settle down and start reproducing. That’s not an option for Daenerys and given that she’s the last Targaryen (that everyone’s knows of currently) there’s no obvious successor to her rule should something happen to her. Jon has Sansa, Cersei has Jaime/her unborn child, who does Dany have?
Her children are her dragons but a dragon can’t sit on the Iron Throne… the fact of the matter is that there is no-one suitable to be Dany’s successor, which is exactly why Tyrion is so nervous about taking chances with her safety. If she dies, her war dies with her and Westeros loses any chance of having a just ruler anytime soon.
3. Why did some of the wights die when one of the White Walkers was killed?
This episode sees a whole bunch of undead die (again), but some of them perish in a slightly more illuminating way than others. When Jon and his band of merry White Walker hunters set upon a group of the undead, Jon kills the Walker which was leading them and most of the zombies promptly fall down and turn to ash. But… how come? We’ve never seen that happen before and White Walkers have been killed previously at Hardhome and by Meera in Hold the Door.
As Jon suggests, the most likely reason is that the White Walkers are like Vampires and every wight has a connection to the Walker who turned them, so that when they’re taken out, the wight they turned dies too. Make sense? This is extremely convenient because it means killing the Night King will destroy his entire army of the undead. Suddenly, the odds aren’t looking so insurmountable, right?
4. Why didn’t Jon get on Drogon when he had the chance?
If he had, there might still be three dragons in Westeros instead of two. Rather than take Dany’s hand and escape on Drogon, Jon chose to turn and take out a few wights in what I can only assume was a pointless attempt to reach the Night King and try and end the war for good. At the time I was too busy shouting at the TV for him to get his arse on that dragon and leave, but now I can see his thinking. We just found out that killing the Night King would destroy all the other White Walkers as well as their army of zombies, effectively ending the war in one fell swoop, and having him within arm’s reach from what appeared to be a strategically advantageous position (coz... dragons) was just too tempting. It was never going to be that easy though and someone else paid the ultimate price for his rashness. If I was Dany, I wouldn’t have forgiven him so easily.
5. Why did Sansa send Brienne to King’s Landing?
Is it just a story mechanism to reunite Brienne and Jaime so she can ask her BFF for some love advice about Tormund? Probably. But while Sansa’s reluctance to return to King’s Landing while Cersei is still Queen is understandable, there’s another person who would have been a better choice as an envoy: Arya. As a Stark she could have represented her family with authority and it would have put her close enough to Cersei to kill her, which is exactly what she wants. Plus, it would have gotten her out of Winterfell and away from any opportunities to cause trouble for Sansa with the Northern Lords. It feels like Sansa missed a trick here not sending her sister, but I guess she doesn’t want to see her become a captive of House Lannister either. Shame.
6. How will Sansa (and the rest of the North) feel about Jon bending the knee?
This episode sees Jon swallow his pride and agree to bed the knee to Daenerys. Although he’s lying down at the time, it’s a touching moment between the pair who grow closer with every episode. But I know someone who isn’t going to be too pleased with the decision. After fighting to reclaim Winterfell, Sansa has seen the North make Jon their King over her and then watched as he left her to run things while he chased after dragons and White Walkers. Now she’s going to find out that he’s given his Kingdom away without even consulting her and I think she’s going to pretty angry about it.
She won’t be the only one either. The Northern Lords aren’t likely to respond in a positive way to the news with most of them seeing Dany as a foreign invader who wants to rule over all of Westeros the same way her father did - with destruction and insanity. If they’re not willing to follow Cersei and House Lannister after what they’ve done, they certainly don’t want to see another Targaryen on the throne, and while Jon might be right - that they’ll see she’s a just and worthwhile leader - they don’t have any time to prove this to the North. Could this be what Littlefinger has been waiting for? Is this what will finally force Sansa to take the North from Jon?
7. Which dragon died?
Admit it, you don’t know which one died either. When it comes to dragons, it’s pretty hard to tell who’s who and while Drogon is always easily distinguable by being Dany’s favourite and the one she usually rides, that leaves the other two in fairly interchangeable positions. So was it Rhaegal or Viserion who met the wrong end of the Night King’s icy spear? It was Viserion, the smallest of the three, who sadly died at the end of episode 6 and you can tell it’s him thanks to his cream and gold coloured scales and red-orange wings. How the other two dragons will react to his demise, we’ve yet to find out, but it looks like they’ll be seeing him again soon enough…