Game of Thrones Season 8, Episode 4 was full of unexpected twists, steamy hookups, and one very unfortunate marriage proposal. Buried among all that plot and action, however, was a pretty incredible Easter egg referencing a poignant scene from GoT Season 1. Who was Tyrion Lannister’s wife before Sansa? Why is the show bringing up Tysha now? And what might it all mean for the Game of Thrones series finale? Here’s what you need to know.
Warning: Light spoilers for Game of Thrones Season 8, Episode 4 ahead.
After a somber funeral for everyone who died at the Battle of Winterfell, Episode 4 opened on a celebration in the Great Hall where all our favorite characters could get drunk, tell jokes, and stare awkwardly at each other (I’m talking about you, Sansa). Amid all the revelry, Tyrion, Jaime, Brienne, and Podrick played a drinking game we haven’t seen since Season 1, inadvertently revealing some major secrets and dredging up a dark chapter in Tyrion’s life.
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The game, invented by Tyrion, is sort of a simplified version of “Never Have I Ever” where you have to guess facts about another player. If you’re right, they drink. If you’re wrong, you drink. (For example: In Season 1, Tyrion guesses correctly that Bronn had been North of the Wall before.)
In Season 8, the game eventually leads to a hookup between Brienne and Jaime that fans have been anticipating for years. But before that can happen, someone asks Tyrion is he was married before Sansa, and the answer is yes. That may come as a surprise, but only if you don’t remember one specific scene from Game of Thrones Season 1, Episode 9.
In the episode, Tyrion invents the game and plays it with Bronn and Shae (RIP). As a result, he ends up telling the story of his short-lived first marriage to Tysha, a prostitute hired by Jaime to take his younger brother’s virginity. Tyrion thought Tysha actually liked him and the two of them got married. Then, his father Tywin found out and things took a predictably dark turn for the worst.
Watch the full scene for yourself here, but be warned, it gets pretty gnarly.
It’s worth noting that after hearing the sordid details of how Tywin publicly shamed Tyrion, Bronn replies, “I would have killed the man who did that to me.”
In hindsight, this was a bit of foreshadowing, as Tyrion eventually did kill his father at the end of Season 4 in a scene once again involving a prostitute he’d fallen in love with (Shae).
As for what any of this means as we head into the final two episodes of Game of Thrones, we can only hope that Tyrion will finally find love after two failed marriages and even more unhappiness. But considering his track record, it doesn’t seem very likely.
Game of Thrones airs Sundays at 9 p.m. Eastern on HBO.