The Last War has began in the penultimate episode of Game of Thrones, as Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) has brought her remaining forces to King’s Landing to fight Queen Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey).
At the end of last week’s episode, The Last of the Starks, Dany brought her depleted forces to King’s Landing, where Queen Cersei had The Golden Company waiting for them.
With this episode falling on Mother’s Day, fans have already been speculating that one of the show’s notable mothers on each side of this battle, will be killed… and that speculation turned out to be correct, with Cersei Lannister dying in a rather brutal
Queen vs. Queen: The Last War has began in the penultimate episode of Game of Thrones, as Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) has brought her remaining forces to King’s Landing to fight Queen Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey)
The episode begins with Lord Varys (Conleth Hill) writing on a piece of parchment that Jon Snow is the true heir to the Iron Throne, when there is a knock on his door.
A young girl named Martha comes to the door, saying, ‘she won’t eat,’ adding she thinks ‘her soldiers’ are watching her, which Varys says, ‘Of course they are. It’s their job.’
Varys asks what he always told her, which she says, ‘The greater the risk, the greater the reward,’ before he sends her back to the kitchen.
Jon Snow arrives on the beach at Dragonstone, met by Varys, who tells Jon that she hasn’t accepted any food, and he’s worried about her.
Varys says he wants what he’s always wanted, the right ruler on the Iron Throne. He says he isn’t sure how her coin has landed, but he is sure about hers.’
Jon says he doesn’t want the throne, but Varys says he will rule wisely and well, but he won’t accept it, saying she is his queen.
We see that Tyrion has been watching this exchange from a distance, before he goes to check on Daenerys, who is seen looking out at the sea from her throne room.
Tyrion says, ‘There’s something you need to know,’ and she says, ‘Someone has betrayed me,’ and Tyrion says, ‘Yes,’ and while she says it’s Jon, he says it’s Varys.
Tyrion says he’s glad Sansa told him, and he’s glad Varys knows too, but Dany is not pleased at all, saying Sansa trusted her to spread secrets that could destroy her.
Tyrion says her intentions were good, and they all want a better world, especially Varys, more than anyone.
‘But it doesn’t matter now,’ Tyrion says, which Dany agrees with, before turning her back on Tyrion, and perhaps the rest of her followers as well.
Varys is writing another note, which he burns when he hears footsteps coming, as he takes off his rings as the footsteps get louder.
Grey Worm (Jacob Anderson) opens the door to his chambers, as Varys looks distraught.
Grey Worm and the other unsullied soldiers lead Varys out to the beach, where Tyrion, Jon and Daenerys are waiting.
Tyrion walks up to him and says, ‘It was me,’ and Varys nods, saying, ‘I hope I deserve this, truly I do. I hope I’m wrong. Goodbye old friend,’ as he gives Tyrion a final look as Tyrion clasps his arm before walking away.
Daenerys steps up and says, ‘Lord Varys, I Daenerys of House Targaryen, first of my name, Breaker of Chains and Mother of Dragons, sentence you to die,’ as her lone dragon looms above her.
‘Dracarys,’ she says, as Rhaegal torches Lord Varys, as a distraught Jon Snow looks on.
Back inside, keeping warm by a fire, Daenerys is holding Missandei’s only possession, the only thing she brought with her when they crossed the Narrow Sea, which she gives to Grey Worm, but he tosses it into the fire.
Jon Snow approaches, and she tells him to leave so she can speak with him, which he does.
Jon tells her he doesn’t want the throne, Dany says she doesn’t have love here, she only has fear. Jon says ‘I love you, and you will always be my queen.
She comes up and says, ‘Is that all I am to you? Your queen?’ before they kiss by the fire.’
Tyrion is trying to convince Dany that thousands will die if she destroys King’s Landing.
Dany says that future generations will never be held hostage by another tyrant, while Tyrion begs her to let the people of King’s Landing to abandon the city so they aren’t slaughtered, which Dany agrees to.
Grey Worm sails off for King’s Landing, as Tyrion is about to leave, when Dany says that his brother Jaime was stopped trying to cross her lines, thinking she’s still loyal to Cersei.
Dany gives him a warning, saying that the last time he fails her, will be the last time he fails her, as he leaves.
Tyrion leaves with Jon Snow on a ship to King’s Landing, as they are met by Davos Seaworth (Liam Cunningham), with Tyrion telling him Dany wants the attack to start as soon as possible.
Tyrion asks Davos for a favor, saying he’s the greatest smuggler known to man, with Davos saying he’s not gonna like this favor.
Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) and The Hound (Rory McCann) approaches a soldier, with Arya saying she’s here to kill Queen Cersei.
Tyrion approaches the unsullied, trying to speak the unsullied language, saying he insists on speaking to the prisoner because he’s hand of the queen.
He goes to see Jaime (Nikolaj Coster Waldau), asking how he was found, as he raises his golden hand, with Tyrion saying she’s Cersei is gonna die unless he can convince her to change her course.
Jaime says he has never really cared for the people, with Tyrion saying he cares about one, with Jaime saying the child is why she’ll never give an inch.
Tyrion says the city will fall tomorrow, but Jaime hints that he will die. Tyrion wants him to escape with Brienne, telling him specific instructions of how to escape, telling him to start a new life.
Tyrion says if he does this he’ll never see Cersei again, with Tyrion asking him to swear it, and Jaime saying, ‘You have my word.’
Tyrion asks Jaime to open the gates and ring the bells so the people can escape.
‘Tens of thousands of innocent lives. One not particularly innocent dwarf. Seems like a fair trade,’ Tyrion says.
He tells his brother that if it wasn’t for him, he would have never survived his childhood, saying Jaime was the only one who didn’t treat him like a monster.
They embrace and cry before Tyrion hurries out, leaving Jaime to ponder everything.
In King’s Landing, the Golden Company fleet is preparing for the battle at hand, with Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbaek) looking out to sea, while other soldiers are prepping the dragon-killing crossbows on the ramparts.
The citizens of King’s Landing are barricading themselves, while Arya and The Hound walk through the chaotic streets unnoticed by anyone.
A hooded Jaime Lannister walks through the Golden Company troops as the gates are closed, while the Golden Company troops wait outside for the war to begin, as Harry Strickland (Marc Rissman) steps to the front of the battle formation.
Tyrion tells Jon that if he hears the bells ring, to call off his men, as he leaves, along with Davos.
In the Red Keep, Cersei watches from a balcony, with Qyburn (Anton Lesser) and The Mountain behind her, while The Hound and Arya rush into King’s Landing before the gates are closed.
Jaime is outside of it all, raising his golden hand, trying to get their attention, before turning back the other way, rushing down an alley, while Cersei watches from above.
Euron hears something and looks up to the clouds, not seeing anything at first, but then Rhaegal is seen swooping down from the skies as they ready the crossbows.
Dany dodges the arrows, torching the Golden Company fleet, while Euron orders his soldiers to fire and barely escapes as Dany fires on him.
With the fleet destroyed, she heads to the Red Keep, dodging arrows, destroying the dragon crossbows, setting these soldiers ablaze, while there is no sign of the dragon at the battlefront where Strickland and Snow are.
They hear noises when the wall from King’s Landing is destroyed from the inside, setting The GOlden Company ablaze, as the unsullied soldiers rush in.
Harry Strickland survived the first blast, but he’s taken down by Grey Worm’s spear, as the unsullied and Dothraki warriors rush inside the city, cutting down Lannister forces.
From above, Dany keeps destroying the dragon crossbows, while torching hundreds of soldiers outside as well.
From inside the Red Keep, Cersei looks on, hearing the dragon’s screech, as it lays waste to the city.
Tyrion is seen walking among the dead and the injured, while Qyburn comes to see Cersei, saying the crossbows have all been destroyed.
Qyburn says the fleet is gone, but Cersei says the Red Keep has never fallen, and it won’t fall today.
Jon Snow, Grey Worm and Davos all lead a group of soldiers inside King’s Landing, as they meet with a group of Lannister forces, both sides unsure of how to proceed.
Tyrion is seen watching the bell tower, with Jaime seen making his way up, as Dany’s dragon swoops into the city as terrified townsfolk run for their lives.
She lands the dragon, but doesn’t set fire to anyone or anything, as the Lannister forces lay down their swords in front of Jon, as someone is heard screaming to ‘ring the bell.’
Jaime grabs a sword and heads through a crowd of townsfolk, as Tyrion watches the bell tower, waiting for Jaime, while Dany waits as well, perched atop her dragon.
More keep yelling ‘ring the bell,’ but Jaime still has not yet done so, as Dany grows impatient, angry, before the bell finally rings.
Cersei closes her eyes as the bell keeps ringing, while Tyrion looks at Daenerys, who is overcome with anger, staring at the Red Keep, taking off, flying towards the Red Keep… and while she doesn’t set fire to the city at first… she then starts torching the city, citizens and soldiers alike.
Grey Worm takes a spear and starts killing Lannister forces, starting the battle, but Jon begs his men to stay back, but it’s too late.
Grey Worm goes on a killing rampage, cutting down Lannister forces left and right, as Dany continues torching the city with her dragon as Cersei looks on with dread.
Davos tries leading people to safety as the battle rages on in the street, women being killed, children, as Jon takes in all the carnage.
Lannister forces are even trying to get people to safety as well, as Jon spots a soldier taking a woman into an alley, as he kills the soldier and tells her to find somewhere to hide.
With half the city destroyed, Dany flies up to the Red Keep, starting to set it ablaze.
Jaime finds the boat Tyrion promised him, when he’s found by Euron, who says if he kills a king, they’ll talk about you until he dies, as they start to fight.
Cersei looks terrified as Rhaegal decimates the Red Keep, crumbling around as Jaime and Euron fight below. Jaime gets the upper hand briefly as they go back and forth before Euron stabs Jaime in the side with his dagger.
Qyburn says the Red Keep isn’t safe anymore, as Cersei starts to cry, with Qyburn suggesting another place to wait out the storm as he leads her away from the burning city.
A bloody Euron says Jaime ‘fought well for a cripple as Jaime crawls to his sword and manages to stab Euron in the belly, saying, ‘Another king for you,’ as he starts bleeding profusely, saying, ‘But I got you!’
‘I’m the man who killed Jaime Lannister,’ Euron says, while looking to the sky.
Arya and The Hound make their way into the Red Keep, with Hound telling her to go home, saying a number of things will kill her, and she’ll be dead too if he tries.
The Hound says he’s been after revenge his whole life, saying, ‘you come with me, you die here’ as he turns and walks away.
She says ‘Sandor,’ as he turns to face her, and she says, ‘Thank you,’ before he walks away.
Cersei is being lead out of a crumbling Red Keep, with The Mountain stopping the walls from hitting her as Cersei, Qyburn and The Mountain come face to face with The Hound.
He kills the few soldiers who come after him, before facing The Mountain, saying, ‘Hi big brother,’ but Cersei says, ‘Ser Gregor, stay by my side,’ but he keeps going.
Qyburn asks him to obey his queen, but he kills Qyuburn, as Cersei walks right past The Hound before he fights The Mountain on the crumbling steps.
He knocks off the helmet that has protected his undead face, with Sandor saying, ‘That’s you. That’s what you’ve always been,’ as their fight continues.
Cersei wanders in the Red Keep alone and terrified, when she comes across Jaime, in the room where she had all of Westeros painted on the floor.
She breaks down crying, as Jaime approaches her and hugs her, while the walls continue crumbling around her. He looks into her eyes, as she cries, saying, ‘You’re hurt,’ and he says, ‘It doesn’t matter.’
He leads her out of the crumbling room, as we see the Clegane brothers continue to do battle as The Hound stabs The Mountain clean through the stomach, but he still throws The Hound down the stairs.
The Hound looks up and sees his brother pulling the sword and and removing his armor, showing his undead flesh, as he picks up The Hound and tosses him around some more.
Arya is seen wandering in the streets, destruction and chaos everywhere, as someone asks her if she’s seen his wife.
She finds people holding burned and disfigured loved ones as Rhaegal continues lighting up the city as Arya takes off running with a crowd.
Arya’s struggles are intercut with The Hound’s, as The Mountain gets the upper hand, beating The Hound to a pulp, when someone pulls up Arya, telling her to take my hand but she’s separated from this good samaritan.
The Hound is near death, as The Mountain holds him up, choking the life out of him, as The Hound tries stabbing him with a dagger, but The Mountain tries gouging his eyes out before The Hound stabs him through the eye, causing The Mountain to drop him.
He starts pulling the dagger out, but The Hound tackles his brother out of the building, falling to his death to the fiery city below.
Jon Snow finds Davos, sheathing his sword, telling everyone to fall back out of the city.
Arya is seen bloodied and battered, before an explosion wakes her up, rubble coating her entire body as she starts walking, coughing, when the tower in front of her crumbles and she starts running for her life before it comes down on top of her.
She’s still alive under the rubble, though, as she finds a number of other survivors, telling them that if they stay there they’ll die, leading them all out of the city, with Dothraki soldiers ride through town.
The woman she was leading out falls, as she tells her and her daughte rthat they have to keep moving as Dany starts raining fire down upon the city as Arya barely escapes.
Jaime is trying to lead Cersei out but he finds the tunnel blocked off by rubble, searching for another way out.
‘I want our baby to live, ‘Cersei says. ‘Please don’t let me die Jaime. I don’t want to die,’ she says, starting to break down, as Jaime asks her to look at him.
‘Nothing else matters, nothing else matters, only us,’ Jaime says, while wiping her tears away as they embrace, when the tunnel above them collapses all around them, leaving their fate uncertain.
Arya is still alive as snow falls from the sky, while she makes her way to her feet, caked with blood and rubble, scars all over her face, as she walks among the fiery, ashen remains of King’s Landing.
She comes across a white horse, still standing after the battle, as she is seen riding out of King’s Landing, as the penultimate episode of Game of Thrones comes to an end.
HBO also released a teaser for the series finale, airing Sunday, May 19, which teased Daenerys Targaryen arriving on the charred ruins of King’s Landing after decimating it with her dragon.
After the 80-minute finale airs on May 19, HBO will release the two-hour documentary Game of Thrones: The Last Watch on Sunday, May 26
After Daenerys and her forces prevailed over The Night King and his army of White Walkers, she turned her attention south to King’s Landing.
While her forces have certainly been diminished in the massive Battle of Winterfell, she still made it south to stake her claim to the Iron Throne.
Qyburn (Anton Lesser) was sent out to try and arrange a surrender, but it was Tyrion who demanded Cersei surrender, though, naturally, she refused, through Qyburn, to do so.
Jon’s battle: Qyburn (Anton Lesser) was sent out to try and arrange a surrender, but it was Jon Snow (Kit Harington) who demanded Cersei surrender, though, naturally, she refused, through Qyburn, to do so
After The Last of the Starks, HBO debuted a brief trailer for the penultimate episode, and while the trailers are typically quite cryptic, revealing very little, this one for the upcoming episode was more cryptic than most.
The trailer showed Daenerys back at Dragonstone, looking rather desolate, as Tyrion approaches, while another shot shows Cersei looking out over King’s Landing.
Jon Snow, Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) and Davos Seaworth (Liam Cunningham) are seen watching their forces from an elevated position before the battle begins, while Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbaek) is seen watching from a ship.
Euron: Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbaek) is seen watching from a ship
The trailer also showed a few shots of Grey Worm (Jacob Anderson), who lost his beloved Missandei (Nathalie Emmanuel) to Queen Cersei, along with soldiers from The Golden Company.
One of Queen Cersei’s massive dragon crossbows is seen being loaded from one of the castle ramparts, which could be a hint that her last dragon, Rhaegal’s days could be numbered.
Dany’s dragon Drogon was killed in a surprising attack at the end of The Last of the Starks, leaving her with just the one dragon Rhaegal, out of her original three dragons.
Golden and Grey: The trailer also showed a few shots of Grey Worm (Jacob Anderson), who lost his beloved Missandei (Nathalie Emmanuel) to Queen Cersei, along with soldiers from The Golden Company
Davos, Jon and Tyrion: Jon Snow, Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) and Davos Seaworth (Liam Cunningham) are seen watching their forces from an elevated position before the battle begins
The trailer ended with Euron squinting at the sky, as Rhaegal’s screech can be heard, though we don’t get to see the dragon attack in the trailer.
Last week’s episode, The Last of the Starks, set a new viewership record for the series, with 17.8 million viewers tuning in.
Both tonight’s episode and the series finale on May 19 have been confirmed to be 80 minutes long, bringing this epic series to a close.
Last week: Last week’s episode, The Last of the Starks, set a new viewership record for the series, with 17.8 million viewers tuning in
Crossbow: One of Queen Cersei’s massive dragon crossbows is seen being loaded from one of the castle ramparts, which could be a hint that her last dragon, Rhaegal’s days could be numbered