Warning: massive spoilers for ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 8, Episode 2, will follow.
Game of Thrones “The Rightful Queen” Season 8, Episode 2 Review & Recap
Major Deaths: 0
Major Reveals: 3 (Bran not telling everyone Jaime tried to kill him, Arya sleeping with Gendry, Jon telling Dany about his parentage)
Number of times Bran creeped someone out: 1 (when he randomly says “the things we do for love”)
The second episode of the final season once again opens with the brand new intro that takes us into the depths of both Winterfell and King’s Landing.
After the season 8 premiere — “Winterfell” — concluded with Jaime Lannister making his long-awaited return to Winterfell and being greeted by none other than Bran Stark, AKA the little boy Jaime nearly killed in the first episode, the second episode of the final season opened with Jaime Lannister answering for his crimes — and Cersei’s — in front of Dany, Jon, and Sansa in the Great Hall of Winterfell.
Jaime warns them of Cersei’s plan to screw them over after the war with the army of the dead is over. Surprisingly enough, Cersei does not appear in the episode at all.
Sansa finally agrees with Dany, giving Jaime grief for attacking Ned Stark in the streets of King’s Landing back in season one.
Bran then chimes in, saying “the things we do for love”, which is a callback to what Jaime said as he pushed Bran out of a window in the pilot.
Brienne of Tarth defends Jaime, telling the story of how Jaime lost his hand defending her and how he helped saved Sansa. Sansa changes her mind, allowing Jaime to stay because of Brienne’s words in his defense. Jon and Dany agree before Greyworm gives Jaime his sword.
Jaime calls Dany “your grace” before Dany storms out, later threatening Tyrion that she will find a new Hand to the Queen if she has to.
Arya visits with Gendry, who is hard at work making Dragon Glass weapons. Arya questions Gendry about what the White Walkers are like before showing off her knife throwing skills and dropping her already famous “death has many faces, I look forward to seeing this one” line.
There is zero doubt Arya is the most fearless character on the show.
Jaime meets with Bran by the Weirdwood Tree, immediately apologizing. Bran is cool with it because he knows Jaime was merely defending his family and Jaime’s push set him on the path to becoming the Three-Eyed Raven.
Bran reveals that he didn’t tell the rest of them about Jaime pushing him because he’d be no use in the war to come if he’s dead.
Jaime asks “what about afterward?”, to which Bran asks how he knows there will even be an “afterward.”
Jaime and Tyrion reunite in the middle of Winterfell, receiving angry looks form Northerners. They discuss Cersei and her general bitchy-ness before Jaime notices Brienne training soldiers in the field.
Jaime and Brienne have a discussion as the Northerners prepare for battle. Podrick is now nice AF with a sword. Jaime humbly reveals he knows he’s not the same fighter he used to be before humbly asking Brienne if he can serve under her command. Given the full circle arc the character has made, it’s tough to imagine a scenario where Jaime gets out of Winterfell alive.
Jorah meets with Dany to discuss Tyrion. Jorah was made for Northern gear.
Dany and Sansa have a meeting, where Dany shockingly offers a major olive branch to Sansa, explaining that she’s in Winterfell fighting “Jon’s war” because she loves him. Sansa calls Dany on her bullshit, asking what her plan is *after* the great war against the dead.
Theon returns to Winterfell, who is welcomed with open arms by Sansa. His character arc is now essentially complete, making his survival another major doubt.
The show then cuts to Davos, who is serving food as he’s served a reminder of the late Princess Shireen as a feisty little girl asking for food asks if she can join the battle.
Tormund returns to Winterfell with Dolorous Edd and Beric Dondarrion. Tormund warns Jon that the army of the dead will be at Winterfell “before the sun comes up tomorrow.” He then asks if “the big woman” [Brienne] is still here.
A montage then shows Jon’s plan to defend the North, as he stresses that their best show is to attack the Night King directly.
Bran reveals what the Night King wants: to “erase this world” and create a permanent night. Because of this desire, he will expose himself by attempting to attack Bran, as Bran holds the entire memory of human existence.
Bran offers to use himself as bait and says he will wait for the Night King at the Weirwood Tree. Theon offers to protect him with the Iron Borne.
Dany orders Tyrion to remain in the crypts because he is a thinker, not a fighter. They don’t know if Dragon Fire hurts the Night King, as Bran smugly says that “no one has ever tried.”
Tyrion sits with Bran and coaxes some humanity out of him.
Grey Worm and Missandei have an adorable conversation about how Grey Worm wants to take her wherever she wants to go.
We check in with Jon and Sam (and Jon’s direwolf Ghost!) as Jon reveals he hasn’t told Dany that his true identity is Aegon Targaryen.
Tyrion and Jaime enjoy some wine, as Tyrion says he wishes he could see the look on Tywin’s face if he knew his sons were about to die defending the North.
Brienne, Podrick, Davos, and Tormund join the party. Tormund shoots his shot at Brienne … again. Tormund then reveals how he got the name “Giantsbane” in the funniest scene of the episode.
The Hound and Arya drink together on the roof of Winterfell.
The Hound: “You never used to shut up and now you just sit there like a mute.”
Arya wants to know why the Hound is fighting or someone other than himself. The Hound retorts by pointing out that he fought for her. Beric shows up, apologizing to Arya.
Arya goes to practice her arrow shooting as she finally receives her custom-made spear from Gendry. Arya tells Gendry she wants to know what sex is like before she dies, thus beginning the longest-awaited hookup in the history of the show.
The episode heads back to the party with Tyrion, Jaime, Brienne, Podrick and Tormund. Tyrion jokes about how he thinks they will somehow survive before Jaime knights Brienne. It’s emotional AF, to say the least.
After Jorah tries and fails, to convince Lady Mormont not to fight in the upcoming battle, Samwell gives Jorah his Valyrian steel House sword, Heartsbane.
Podrick reveals he can sing, which may explain how he gets how prostitutes to pay him.
Jon and Dany meet int he crypts, where Jon tells Dany the truth about Lyanna Stark and Jon’s true parentage. Shockingly, Dany seems relatively chill about it.
The closing scene shows the Army of the Dead arriving at Winterfell.
Game of Thrones Season 8, Episode 2 “The Rightful Queen” Analysis
The episode was filled with character resolutions and conclusion, as key character arcs and relationships such as Jaime, Theon, Arya, Gendry The Hound, and Bran all came full circle from where they started.
Similar to last week, while there was no “action” in the episode, the hour was filled with moments that have been brewing since the show began.
Next week’s episode is set to be literally the most intense, brutal, and bloodiest, episode of Game of Thrones yet, as the long-awaited Battle of Winterfell is sure to see the deaths of many main characters.
Additionally, “The Battle of Winterfell” is set to be both the longest episode of the season and the series as a whole, as it’s utterly epic movie-like 82-minute run-time is two minutes longer than the previous record-setter: the season 7 finale “The Dragon and the Wolf.”
In fact, every remaining episode of Game of Thrones will be like a mini-movie, as each of the remaining four episodes are at least 78 minutes long, with the final two episodes clocking in at 80 minutes a piece.
The eighth and final season of the Emmy-award winning fantasy action drama Game of Thrones, which consists of just six episodes, began airing on HBO on Sunday, April 14.