With only two episodes left in Game of Thrones, several questions should be addressed in the penultimate episode, which airs on Sunday night. Will Arya use her powers again? Where is Bran? Why is Euron so scared? Who is going to kill Cersei, and will she meet her fate in an action-packed second-to-last chapter, or will that moment come in the final episode, if at all?
Below are six questions for Game of Thrones Season 8, Episode 5 that may be addressed on Sunday night.
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6. What Is Euron So Surprised About in the Episode 5 Trailer?
In the final shot of the Episode 5 preview (watch it above), Euron Greyjoy is at the bow of his ship, looking into a cloudy sky. We hear the shriek of a dragon, and he looks crestfallen. It’s not the reaction one would expect from an arrogant pirate — especially one who has just insta-killed a dragon with Scorpion spears from a long distance. His reaction is surprising. This scene is in the Episode 5 trailer, so we’ll learn why on Sunday. Here are a few guesses.
Some fans think that Bran Stark might use his Three-Eyed Raven powers to warg into the dead dragon Rhaegal. This feels far-fetched, but Euron would react this way if he saw a huge black dragon and the zombie of the dragon he just killed flying toward him.
Yet another possibility is that after their previous encounter, Daenerys spent a few weeks gearing up for the Battle of King’s Landing by having the smiths craft dragon armor for Drogon, her final surviving dragon. What if Euron is seeing a huge dragon clad in shining metal armor flying toward him? The more mundane alternative is that Drogon used the clouds as cover and simply got the drop on Euron’s fleet. We’ll know soon enough. (Corey Plante)
5. Does Bran Stark Matter Anymore?
As the Three-Eyed Raven, Bran should be the most powerful person in Westeros, but Game of Thrones seems to be done with him heading into the penultimate episode of Season 8. Bran could have used his powers to learn of Euron’s surprise attack, but he didn’t. Will Daenerys and Jon Snow turn to the youngest Stark for help in their war against Cersei? My guess is probably not.
If Bran’s only purpose in Game of Thrones was to figure out Jon’s true identity, then job well done, but I’m still holding onto a sliver of hope that the Three-Eyed Raven will play a role in the “Last War.” (Jacob Kleinman)
4. Who Will Kill Cersei Lannister?
Everyone is converging on King’s Landing with one goal in mind: defeat Cersei. For Jon Snow, that might be tied into more honorable efforts to free the realm, but most of our heroes are being driven by revenge. Arya has been focused on killing Cersei since Season 1, while Jaime only came around more recently to the realization that his sister is evil. Add Daenerys, who’s in full revenge mode after watching the execution of her best friend, Missandei, by the Mountain via a beheading, and you can guarantee that the Queen’s days are numbered.
The only question is: Who will be the one to kill the queen? Here’s why it could be Jaime. And here’s why it could be Arya. But will it be Dany? Perhaps Jon? Or is it someone totally unexpected? (Jacob Kleinman)
3. Will Daenerys Find Out That Tyrion and Varys Are Questioning Her Authority?
Daenerys made it clear in Season 7 that if she ever found out Lord Varys was plotting to remove her from the Iron Throne, she would make sure he was executed. So, not exactly the best way to build a healthy working relationship. Similarly, Tyrion has been skating on thin ice with Dany throughout Seasons 7 and 8, with his advice either falling on deaf ears or his plans going awry. In Episode 4, “The Last of the Starks,” Varys and Tyrion discover Jon’s true identity (thanks, Sansa), and it leads to them question Dany’s stability as a leader and her claim to the throne. Is she actually going to become the “Mad Queen”?
As the pressure builds to secure Dany’s victory over Cersei in the penultimate episode, we should prepare for Dany to take no prisoners and remove anyone who is not completely in her corner; she’s come too far to be doubted now. Will word get back to her that her top advisors are questioning her? Will she be forced to execute or imprison them? Melisandre did tell Varys he’d die in Westeros, so maybe the time has finally come. (Allie Gemmill)
2. Oh God, Tyrion and Sansa Are Gonna Hook Up, Aren’t They?
Hey, I’m going to say something that’s hard to believe, but I think Game of Thrones is pretty terrible at writing women. I know. Hot take.
When Tyrion and Sansa started, I dunno, started stealing glances at each other, I got hives. It was one thing to write Sansa framing her sexual assault traumas as making her stronger. It’s another thing to stick her with somebody that was “one of the good ones.” Gross.
And by-the-by, Tyrion ain’t one of those guys. Yes, he’s been something of the show’s moral compass despite his rampant drinking (that’s when he knows things), and he did treat her well, but that doesn’t mean he should be tossed into a Disney ending with Sansa, the bird-no-more.
I like Sansa a lot. She’s the only one speaking reason, especially in contrast to Daenerys. I also like her enough to know that she’s better off without anyone else, let alone a Lannister. Let a girl live. (Eric Francisco)
1. When Will Arya Actually Use Her Special Faceless Men Powers?
Imagine if the writers of X-Men never used Wolverine’s healing factor. Or DC never allowed Superman to lift an airplane. You imbue characters with extraordinary talents for a reason — to use them. Otherwise, what is the point?
In the case of Arya Stark, we have yet to see A Girl Use Her Powers when it matters most. Sure, she killed Walder Frey, and her victory there was deeply satisfying to anyone still traumatized by the Red Wedding. But that should only be the beginning. (Also, it happened like three years ago.) You don’t spend a whole season sending Arya through the ringer only to have her use those extremely specific, rare talents just once.
In the highly anticipated Battle of Winterfell, which is now in our rearview, we saw Arya make use only of her physical abilities: fencing from Syrio Forel, staff fighting from Waif, her natural ability to sneak around undetected. But “The Long Night” didn’t let Arya use what else she learned from the Faceless Men, not even in her fated moment with the Night King.
Instead of tricking the Night King by pretending to be Bran (who set himself up to be bait!), Arya just snuck up on the guy and did some Captain America: The Winter Soldier-y knife fighting for the killing blow. It was a cool moment, and probably makes more logical sense given the circumstances. But as a story? Feels a little emptier than it should.
Luckily, Arya isn’t done. She has yet to fulfill her “Green Eyes” prophecy, which leads fans to believe Arya will kill Cersei Lannister (who happens to have green eyes). With just two episodes left, there is still time for a girl to use her gifts. (Eric Francisco)