Relive the final chapter of Season 3 here with Wetpaint Entertainment's recap of the episode.
The Twins and Surrounding Areas: Red Wedding Aftermath
You thought the Red Wedding was over? Sorry guys, no such luck. We open with Roose Bolton looking down at the Stark camp being decimated. There's fire, murder, and Robb's body with Grey Wind's head sewn on, because everything is horrible. The worst part? Arya has to witness it, because The Hound takes his sweet time leaving camp.
Arya gets a chance to work through her anger with some good old fashioned murder therapy when she and The Hound ride by a group of Frey men laughing about the Red Wedding. Her response? Stab one of them to death. Awesome. The Hound jumps in to finish the job. His only comment on watching a young girl get her stabbity on is, "Next time you're going to do something like that, tell me first." Such a good mentor. Arya holds the coin Jaqen H'ghar gave her last season and whispers, "Valar Morghulis." Clearly, she hasn't been warped by her recent experiences in the least.
Speaking of, we're treated to another scene of Ramsay and Theon. It opens with Ramsay eating some sausage and taunting Theon, like you do when you're a sadistic bastard. "My mother taught me not to throw stones at cripples," he muses. "But my father told me to aim for their heads!"
Theon desperately begs for death — again, great acting from Alfie Allen — but no such luck. Ramsey needs him alive. Alive, but not well. In fact, he takes the twisted games to a whole new level by deciding to strip Theon of his name, beating him until he accepts his new moniker: Reek.
The last we see of Theon, he's desperately saying, "Reek. My name is Reek."
Maybe Robb Stark got off lucky.
Pyke: A Sister's Love
However, there might be some hope for Theon. His father, Balon Greyjoy, receives a threatening letter from Ramsay, and a "gift." Which, yep, is Theon's dick. "Leave the North now or more boxes will follow with more Theon," Ramsay writes. Balon doesn't care, but Yara (Theon's excellent older sister), takes a boat and some men to go save her little brother. This story is a big departure from the books, so we're interested to see where it goes.
King's Landing: A Lot of Talk, and Very Little Doing
In King's Landing, Tyrion and Sansa have a nice little walk, where they actually — shock! — get along, bonding over their mutual low status and coming up with juvenile plans to get back at the people who have humiliated them. It's a lovely little moment; it's nice to see these characters smile.
That rare moment of gentleness is destroyed when Tyrion is summoned to a small council meeting where he's informed of Robb's death. Joffrey is simply giddy about it, and declares he wants to literally serve Robb's head to Sansa on his wedding day. Tyrion comes to his wife's defense, but Joffrey pulls the "I am king" card: "Everyone is mine to torment." Cue not-very-veiled threats from Tyrion and general family strife, which Tywin tries to shut down. For once, Joff stands up for himself ... by declaring that his father (Robert, that is) won the real war, the one against the Targaryens. Dude, you are so not related to Robert. Like, at all.
Tywin finally forces Joffrey off to bed (or, as Tyrion puts it: "You just sent the most powerful man in Westeros to bed without his supper"), but keeps his youngest son around so he can once again lecture him about how he needs to put a baby in Sansa. See, Tyrion's duty is to the family, which is more important than his selfish desire to not rape his teenaged bride. Tyrion calls Tywin a hypocrite, which backfires spectacularly: Tywin explains that he has personally sacrificed for the family, by letting Tyrion live instead of drowning him as a baby. Ouch.
Later, Varys pays Shae a visit. She's still conflicted about Tyrion's marriage, and Varys taps into that. He gives her a bag of diamonds and encourages her to sail off and start a new life. Why? Varys claims it's because he thinks Tyrion can make the world a better place, and she endangers him too much. Is that the truth? Who knows, with Varys. It doesn't matter; she rejects the offer, apparently convinced it's coming from Tyrion.
We're also treated to another delightful Cersei and Tyrion scene, where she tries to convince him to get Sansa pregnant, because it's the one thing that could make Sansa happy. Cersei admits she's not exactly a happy person, but her kids — even Joffrey — give her something to live for. She reflects that Joffrey was an adorable child. "No one can take that away from me, not even Joffrey." Yeah, OK, crazy. "How long does it go on?" Tyrion wants to know. "It" in this sentence presumably means the empty, terrible lives the Lannisters are leading in the name of their family. "Until we've dealt with all our enemies," Cersei replies. So, forever.
Finally, we see Jaime and Brienne have made it to King's Landing. She gives him a small smile of encouragement (our. hearts.) and then they enter the city where Jaime once swanned around as the biggest badass in town. He manages to show up at Cersei's door. She gasps in confusion, he looks down at his arm and looks up at her imploringly. More on that next year.
Bran and company have made it to the Nightfort, an abandoned Night's Watch castle. He tells a story about a cook who killed the king's son and cooked him into a pie; the cook was turned into a giant, ever-hungry rat who eats his young. Why? Because killing guests is real bad, and the gods do not like it. We don't know. Frey seems to be doing OK right now.
Sam and Gilly conveniently come through the Wall at this very same castle. Sam works out who Bran is, and tries to convince him to come to Castle Black, but Jojen and his magic isn't having it. The Night's Watch can't stop the White Walkers. The armies of Westeros can't. But ... Bran can? Apparently? Sam shows the gang the way north of the Wall, and they march out into the snowy whiteness while Sam and Gilly watch.
Meanwhile, in the Gift, Ygritte has managed to track Jon down. "I know you won't hurt me," he tells her as she raises a bow at him. "You know nothing, Jon Snow," she says through tears. And it turns out he really doesn't: She shoots him three times as he scrambles to his horse and rides off. Damn. On the other hand, she doesn't hit his neck or heart or anything like that. Given how skillful of a shot she's been shown to be, maybe that was her way of saying, "I love you."
Back at Castle Black, Sam shows Gilly to Aemon, and Gilly declares the baby is named "Sam," because aww. Sam manages to explain that he has kept his oath: the baby isn't his. He insists that taking care of Gilly totally falls into the Night's Watch's purview as stand up guys meant to protect the realms of men. Aemon agrees that she can be their guest, because sending her back beyond the Wall would be a totally dick move. Aemon instructs Sam to write down everything he saw with the White Walkers and send off as many ravens as possible to leaders in Westeros.
Later, Jon makes it back to Castle Black, but he looks almost dead. Cliffhanger!
Dragonstone: A Strange Kind of Mercy
In Dragonstone, Davos visits Gendry and they bond over being born poor. Oh, hey, it turns out his tryst with Melisandre was Gendry's first time having sex. So, that's traumatizing for him. Davos explains that he accepted his Lordship to help his son, which clearly worked out so well, what with his son being dead and all. Gendry remains cynical about his chances in life.
Later, Davos practices his reading with Stannis's mail. Sure, it's not the most riveting stuff, but he is Hand of the King again, so it's his job. He receives Sam's message, but his reading is interrupted by the ringing of bells. Dragonstone has learned of the Red Wedding, and Stannis clearly thinks Robb's death is a result of Melisandre's magic. You know, the magic that required poor Gendry's blood. Davos insists blood magic is not the way to go. Melisandre disagrees: She wants to burn Gendry. Despite Davos's best efforts to convince him not to needlessly murder more innocents, Stannis agrees with Melisandre.
However, Davos, being basically the only good person left in Westeros, lets Gendry go in the middle of the night. Go Davos go! "Why are you doing this?" Gendry asks. "Because it's right, and I'm a slow learner," Davos replies. At least he's more self aware than Ned Stark was.
How honorable is Davos, you ask? So honorable he immediately fesses up about what he did. Stannis sentences him to death, but Davos, as Hand, chimes in that Stannis still needs him. He gives Davos Sam's message. Melisandre burns the note, and gazes into the fire. "The true war lies in the north," she decides. Only Stannis can help against the White Walkers. And hey, she even says Davos should live. So, that's ... nice?
Outside of Yunkai, Dany waits to see if the slaves of Yunkai will embrace her as queen, or scorn her as conqueror. Answer? Oh, come on, you know the answer: Embrace her as queen. "Mhysa!" They all declare. It means mother. Reassured, the Mother of Dragons walks out amongst her people, and is lifted up, giving us the first real moment of hope and happiness since the Red Wedding. We won't lie: We cried.
Overall, we thought this was a solid finale. Nothing groundbreaking, but that's how Game of Thrones finales always are: They're about setting up the pieces for the next season. And the board right now is very interesting.
That direwolf head it really, really big.
Tyrion had an assortment of amazing lines this week: "The disgraced daughter and the demon monkey, we're perfect for each other.” "Is that bad poetry, or is that supposed to mean something?" "Monsters are dangerous, and just now kings are dying like flies.” "It's not easy being drunk all the time. Everyone would do it if it were easy."