We open in the corpse-washing station at Project Mayhem, where Arya is getting good at her job. Enough so to get bored with it and start issuing demands. She wants to play the game again, and her mean ginger supervisor obliges. The game has one rule, and it’s that Arya doesn’t win.
(She was lying, by the way. Watch the eyes as she makes up a cute detail near the end.)
Capt. Jaquen drops in for a late night game session, and Arya tests him with plausible lies, all of which he catches. Tellingly, he beats her harder the more she insists she hated the Hound.
Meanwhile, on an endless stretch of shoreline with no villages, Tyrion is catching Jorah up on all the news he’s missed while he was haunting whorehouses in Volantis. None of it good. Jorah’s having a shit week, what with the greyscale and never being able to redeem himself in his father’s eyes.
Back at Project Mayhem, Arya’s stepping up to the plate, administering the gift of the many-faced god to a dying girl. Third go at the game of faces, and Arya gets a win.
(They better have a huge “employees must wash hands” sign in the washroom at Project Mayhem.)
And Arya passes through yet another door, down to the stacks where the faceless men keep all the faces. Ironic. And a girl is apparently ready to take it to the next level.
Tyrion is our audience surrogate this week, asking Jorah the tough questions about Dany and the long game. Jorah’s answers don’t address a lot of practical concerns, besides which there are these slavers that you didn’t see in plain fucking sight.
It takes a lot of fast talk to get a deal going, but Tyrion and Jorah are at least back on a ship to Mereen. And the title of this ep really should have been The Dwarf Lives Until We Find a Cock Merchant.
The Unspeakable Pimp Baelish has arrived in King’s Landing, and the Faith Militant are here to welcome him. The scarheads are feeling some big nuts, but Scratchy is here to see their patroness the Queen Mum.
Cersei hauled Baelish in to extract a promise that the Vale would fight for the crown, should anything happen along the lines of Oh I Don’t Know Cersei trashing all manner of alliances and plunging Westeros into another bloody war with winter imminent. Baelish is here to sell the last phase of his plot to take Winterfell for himself. His plan? Duck out while Stannis and Flaymate fight, and then ride in with the knights of the Vale to bayonet the wounded. It’s genius, and he gets to do it with a royal warrant, since Cersei swallows it hook, line & sinker.
Down in Dorne, two of the worst plans imaginable converge on the Water Gardens. It goes about how you’d expect, and ends with all parties humiliated at spearpoint and hustled off to meet their fates.
Cersei is trying on Tywin’s power move of continuing to fuss with paperwork during meetings, and Lady Olenna is not having it. Cersei is having a moment, and intends to ride it out. She also thinks she won this round, which is not the case.
At the aforementioned inquest, Loras is looking like Theon after a few weeks in the cells. The High Sparrow plays him like a fiddle, springs a surprise witness, and it all goes to hell, leaving Cersei smirking, Loras and Marge in the cells, and Lady O looking exceedingly grim. Again, Cersei thinks she just won. What she did was set two great powers at odds, with her in the middle.
And I don’t want to talk about the hideous goings on at Winterfell, which we may blame upon the Unspeakable Pimp Baelish. Not simply for abandoning Sansa to her inevitable degradation at the hands of the legendary degenerate and sadist Ramsay. Baelish is the damned Iago of this entire saga.
This story is leading up to a number of conclusions. What happens with Dany and her dragons, what happens to Bran the Tree, does Arya become no one, do the ice zombies kill everyone? All I care about at this point is what happens to Baelish. The rest of them can take up knitting.