'Game of Thrones' episode 4 finally gave us the battle we've been waiting six seasons to see

'Game of Thrones' episode 4 finally gave us the battle we've been waiting six seasons to see
From Mashable - August 6, 2017

This recap is dark and full of spoilers for Game of Thrones Season 7, episode 4, titled "The Spoils of War."

Are you still shaking? I am still shaking.

Episode 4 finally brought Daenerys Targaryen to mainland Westerosa monumental power play that's been six seasons in the making.

Dany's grand entrance is huge for a number of reasons, not least of which is that our stubborn Khaleesi desperately needed a decisive victory over the Lannisters after losing Dorne, the Iron Islands and The Reach in the last two episodes.

The way Dany arrived was a showstopper, to be sure, but the fact that she arrived at all is pretty incredibleas Robert Baratheon predicted way back in Season 1, Dany's invasion marks the first time that the Dothraki have ever crossed the Narrow Sea, and even without her scaly children, that's a big effing deal for Westeros, since its inhabitants have spent centuries resting safe in the knowledge that the Dothraki are no threat to them. We were only five episodes into Season 1 when Cersei outright dismissed Robert's concerns about Dany with the arrogant assertion that "The Dothraki do not sail... They do not have discipline, they do not have armor, they do not have siege weapons."

Unfortunately for Cersei, Daenerys Targaryenmuch like Jon Snow and that pesky Night Kinghas a habit of making the impossible happen.

Know what else seemed impossible to the people of Westeros just a few short years ago? Dragons. Dany's landing marks the first time that any of the regular plebes in the Seven Kingdoms have seen the mythical beastsand let's be honest, most folks probably thought their existence was pure propaganda before witnessing them firsthand.

Jaime and Bronn are both generally pretty unflappable in a fight, but the horror on their faces was unmistakable when they first caught sight of Drogon swooping down from the cloudsand even though they managed to injure him, that wo not be what the survivors remember after seeing their comrades turned to literal ash on the battlefield. (At this rate, Dany will have to add "Queen of the Ashes" to her expansive list of titles, whether she likes it or not.)

Cersei may have gold to offer (and now, sadly, she has even more, since Dany arrived too late to prevent the Lannisters from getting Highgarden's stolen swag through the gates of King's Landing), but you might have noticed that even Bronn did not dare leap after his spilled "spoils of war" while Drogon was blasting dragonfire across the plain. How many soldiers will willingly march into battle against a creature with that kind of firepower, knowing that their arrows and shields are no match for a dragon's heat?

We were all busy mocking Ed Sheeran when Arya ran into some Lannister soldiers back in the season premiere, but the subtext of that scene made it clear that most regular folks do not give a crap about who's on the Iron Throne, just like they do not get much say in their lives when they are enlisted to "go off to fight in someone else's wars."

If enough Lannister soldiers deserted to avoid being roasted alive, Cersei would be hard pressed to punish them when she just admitted to Tycho Nestoris that she needs to expand her armies. More likely, though, Cersei will just continue sending young, naive soldiers to certain death without batting an eye over the body count (she's already admitted that nobody matters to her except herself and Jaime), and they will keep obeying, because what other choice do they have?

Much like the Battle of the Bastards, Dany's attack took the show to a whole new levelit's obvious why Thrones has been so stingy with the direwolves this season, considering what a budgetary and technical feat it must have been to render Drogon's devastating power in such detail.


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