The wait is over as Game of Thrones has returned for its seventh and penultimate season. It was a long wait but the premiere certainly didn’t disappoint.
If you haven’t seen the Game of Thrones season 7 premiere yet and don’t want anything spoiled then please stop reading now. If you are up-to-date and want to relive the action then keep on reading.
The season opened up in the Riverlands with a surprising face. Walder Frey (David Bradley), who was last seen having his throat slit by Arya (Maisie Williams), banged his glass to raise a toast. He was holding the second feast in a fortnight and had invited as many of his family there as possible. He seemed a little different, less grumpy than usual. He said plans must be made now that winter had arrived and wanted a toast with proper wine for proper heroes.
He spoke about the Red Wedding and how they slaughtered the Starks. He said that they had made a mistake by not killing every Stark. Everyone in the room began to take ill. The wine was poisoned and he reached up and removed his face. It was Arya! She said the North remembered and that winter had come for House Frey.
Later, Arya came across a group of Lannister soldiers and Ed Sheeran (really!) singing. They invited her to join them and she sat and enjoyed some rabbit and blackberry wine. The soldiers moaned about King’s Landing and asked where she was headed. She said she was off to kill the Queen and they all laughed thinking she was joking.
Beyond the Wall the Night’s King was leading his huge army of White Walkers toward the Wall. Amongst the thousands of dead were Giants who were now White Walkers.
At the gate of the Wall, Meera Reed (Ellie Kendrick) arrived with Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright). He was just finishing a warg session when the gate opened. Dolorous Edd (Ben Crompton) and some of his men greeted them and asked if they were Wildlings. Meera explained who Bran was but Edd wanted proof. Bran told him that he knew Edd was at Hardhome and knew what he saw. He spoke of the Night’s King coming and Edd allowed them inside.
At Winterfell, Ser Davos (Liam Cunningham) and Sansa (Sophie Turner) sat by the side of Jon Snow (Kit Harington) as he explained his plans. He wanted all northern Maesters to scour their books for Dragonglass mentions as they needed it for weapons to fight the White Walkers. He also wanted everyone between the ages of 10 and 60 to train daily.
Lyanna Mormont (Bella Ramsay) pledged her support. Jon said the only thing standing between them and the undead was the Wall but that it hadn’t been properly manned in centuries. Tormund Giantsbane (Kristofer Hivju) stood up when he realised Jon wanted the Wildlings to man the castles. Tormund said he would head to Eastwatch, a castle by the sea. He said it looked like the Wildlings were the Night’s Watch now.
Jon said if the undead breached the Wall the first two castles in their path would be Last Hearth and Karhold, homes of the Umbers and the Karstarks. It was suggested that they couldn’t be trusted and their castles should be pulled down. Sansa spoke up with the suggestion to give the castles to new families. Jon had his own suggestion to leave the castles with the families that owned them.
He said they had been loyal in the past and could be again. He said the punishment for treason was death and that those who committed it had died in battle. He stressed that his decision was final which annoyed Sansa. Jon called up Ned Umber and Alys Karstark and had them pledge their loyalty to House Stark. He said the north needed to band together now and always.
Jon later spoke with Sansa and pulled her up on questioning his authority in front of the others. She said he was good at ruling but needed to be smarter. A raven arrived from King’s Landing with a message from Cersei (Lena Headey). She invited Jon to come and bend the knee or suffer. Sansa was worried Jon was too focused on the Night’s King and said she knew Cersei. She pointed out that Cersei finds a way to murder anyone that crosses her.
In the training area, Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) took on Podrick Payne (Daniel Portman) where she bested him each time. Tormund walked over and gave Brienne his usual lustful stare. He said Podrick was a lucky man.
Watching above them was Littlefinger and Sansa. He told her that he heard that Brienne beat the Hound (Rory McCann). He said he wanted Sansa safe and happy. She said Brienne would keep her safe but he wondered what would make her happy. He left when Brienne came over and asked why he was still there. Sansa said they needed the support of the Vale.
At King’s Landing, Cersei was having a map of Westeros painted on one of the tiled floors. She told her brother Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) the realm was now theirs for the taking. Jaime asked if he should be angry or afraid.
Cersei talked about how Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) had chosen their brother Tyrion as her hand. She knew that they were on the way and wondered where they would land. Jaime suggested Dragonstone. Cersei talked about how she had enemies on all sides and Jaime said they needed decent allies. Cersei pointed out that she hadn’t followed their father for 40 years without learning something.
She had invited Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbæk), the new King of the Iron Islands, to visit. He arrived at the Red Keep with his shiny new Iron Fleet and Cersei gave him an audience in the throne room. The Mountain (Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson) stood ominously at her side with Jamie on the other. Euron said they could murder their enemies together and suggested they marry. He poked fun at Jamie who doubted him. Cersei turned Euron down and he said he needed to prove his trust and would return with a gift when he had it. Presumably he’ll go after Danerys?
At the Citadel, we caught up with Samwell Tarly (John Bradley-West) who was having a shit time, literally. His days were now filled with emptying and cleaning bed pans. He now had access to books but not the gated area reserved for Maesters.
During an autopsy, Sam asked Archmaester Ebrose (Jim Broadbent) for access to the Maester’s area but was denied. Archmaester Ebrose said he believed Sam’s stories and explained how the Citadel was the world’s memory. He said that the Wall had lasted through all the winters that had come and gone.
Sam eventually decided to steal some keys and accessed the gated area in secret. He borrowed some books and read them with Gilly (Hannah Murray). They found some information on Dragonstone with a map that showed there was a mountain of Dragonglass beneath the ground. Sam said that Jon needed to know this new information.
Later, Sam was walking the cells of those who were ill. As he collected the meal trays a stone looking arm reached out and grabbed him. It was Jorah (Iain Glen) who was still afflicted by Greyscale. Jorah asked if Dany had come yet.
Elsewhere, the Hound and the Brotherhood without Banners, including Beric Dondarrion (Richard Dormer) and Thoros of Myr (Paul Kaye) were riding on horseback. It was snowing and they poked fun at the Hound’s grumpy mood.
They came across a deserted villiage and decided to investigate. They found the bodies of a man and daughter who apparently killed themselves due to starvation. The Hound asked why the Lord of Light kept bringing Dondarrion back but he said he didn’t know. He could only come to the conclusion that he needed him to be alive.
Thoros of Myr invited the Hound to look into a fire. The Hound was nervous due to his fear of fire. He eventually did as asked and saw a wall of ice where the castle wall meets the sea. He spoke of an arrowhead mountain and said he could see the dead marching past. Thoros asked him if he now believed. During the night, the Hound went outside and dug graves for the dead.
At the end of the episode, Daenerys arrived at Dragonstone. With her was her armada, Tyrion (Peter Dinklage), Varys (Conleth Hill) and her three dragons. On the beach she touched the sand before they entered Dragonstone. Inside she touched a banner before heading into the impressive throne room. Next she went with Tyrion to a room with a stone map of Westeros. The episode ended as she said ‘Shall we begin?’
Let us know your thoughts on Dragonstone in the comments below as well as your hopes for the season.
Game of Thrones season 7 continues at 9pm Mondays on Sky Atlantic in the UK.
View some more images from Dragonstone in our gallery: