Spoilers, as always, within.
Quick takes: DRAGON! Sweet little flappy little burn-y little Drogon! I want one. The dingos would learn to deal.
Stannis and Davos continue to be my favorite people on the show this season. Men and their friendships, that’s my kryptonite, and Davos is just so terribly good for Stannis, and at this stage of the game Stannis is still able to see it. The relief on Liam Cunningham’s worn, weary face was a gut punch. And let me be shallow for a minute: I would climb both of those like trees.
This show is like Choose Your Own Adventure sometimes, where you can so easily see how things could have gone another way. Renly and Robb could have joined together and defeated Stannis and all could have been well. Arya could have whispered Tywin Lannister’s name to Jaqen H’gar and ended the war then and there. Joffrey could have just once listened to his uncle and people wouldn’t be listening to some rats-blood-crazed street preacher all afternoon.
So let’s talk about Bran and his wolf dreams, about Samwell Tarly’s twitterpated love connections, about Arya & Arry, about skinchanging and Faceless Men and Brienne’s seeming willingness to swear eternal fealty to whatever might happen to be around at the moment. Because all we’re doing, all day long, all the time, is slipping into different suits, and seeing which ones fit.
Sam was a coward, until he met someone for whom he wanted to be brave.
Bran was crippled, until he slipped into his wolf’s skin and roamed the woods of Winterfell with the smell of blood in his throat.
Brienne put on Renly’s cloak and armor and knelt at his feet and that dream got all stabbinated by Melisandre, so she knelt before Catelyn, armoring back up in the only way she knows how.
Arya is just discovering, as all teenage girls discover, that costumes exist and that everyone wears one and some people, for good and ill, wear more than one.
And Dany? Dany’s not there yet. I’ve read all the books that are out right now, and it’s not spoiling anything to say Dany isn’t there yet. Her leathers and her boots worked for the Dothraki, but in Qarth she tries on fine blue silk, let someone brush her hair loose, goes to the party. That’s the thing about costumes: You don’t have to pick just one.