‘Game of Thrones’ 6×01 “The Red Woman” Roundtable

Game of Thrones returned last week, with an episode that provided more questions than answers. Is Jon Snow coming back? What does this season have in store for Daenerys? What exactly is going on in Dorne? Who’s first on Cersei’s revenge list? Can Arya ever become No One?

We don’t know. We can only speculate. We are, however, excited to find out. And we have many, many thoughts.

So, join us as we discuss the first episode season 6, titled “The Red Woman”:

We saw Davos hole up with Jon’s body, Melisandre lose faith and Edd go enlist some help, presumably, from the wildlings. And yet the trailer shows a fight is coming. What do you think it’s going to happen at Castle Black?

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BETH

Oh, a battle is happening for sure. Between the Boltons and Thorne’s treacherous ways, it’s a safe bet that someone will get hurt. Which doesn’t even factor in the White Walkers horde headed their way. The ridiculous amount of congregating happening at Castle Black hinges on those Stark kiddos and their bastard brother, Jon Snow. And yes, I’m fully invested in all! Rather suspect the Free Folk will be too.

CHLOE

It seems that Ramsay has turned his eyes on the Wall as well, so it seems like something is definitely about to go down. And then there are the White Walkers. Everyone is closing in on the North, as if the situation with Jon Snow weren’t stressful enough. I don’t know what to expect, except more violence and death. I just want to see Jon Snow come out alive and on top.

CARYN

I like to remember the fact that the wildlings have a giant on their side, so the inevitable war between the pro-Jon’s and anti-Jon’s *fingers crossed that Jon is alive for that* will tip in the favor of the pro-Jon’s because the Wildlings are a large group and can easily overpower Aliser Thorne and that damn Olly and their crew. I hope that Melisandre resurrects Jon, and him and his wildling army end up fighting the Bolton armies (who we know are also on their way to Castle Black) and snuffing them out once and for all.

LIZZIE

It’s like civil war at Castle Black, and I love it. That’s what those people get for slaying their Lord Commander. I almost hope Davos and the wildlings don’t take care of all the traitors, so the Bolton Army can have some. And the White Walkers. And then I hope Jon and the pro-Jon army eventually win, at least temporarily, because maybe it’ll take dragons to get rid of the White Walkers once and for all? It probably will. And that just makes me more excited.

Brienne was finally in the right place at the right time, rescuing Sansa from Bolton’s men. Where do they go now? And, do you think things are finally looking up for the Starks?

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BETH

Hmmm… nothing comes easy even when the planets align in Game of Thrones in favor of someone. Just ask Margaery Tyrell about how fate makes a bitch of us all. That said, the Starks have had an awfully long streak of bad luck which turned them into survivors. Now, the question I suppose is will it make them fighters willing to rule? They’re plucky and plenty smart, but they need to figure out how to make others follow them without fail.

CHLOE

The sequence with Brienne and Pod rescuing Sansa and Theon was my favorite in the episode. I have so much love for those two, and they’re finally doing what they set out to do. Of course, getting into Sansa’s service is only step one – BriPod still has to get her to safety, then get Arya. Considering that Arya is not on the continent and currently isn’t even Arya (hello, “No One”), the safety thing is going to be next on the list. But with their stated destination as Castle Black… As we just discussed, that isn’t exactly the stronghold it once was. I think it’s all uphill for Sansa now that she’s out of Ramsay’s immediate vicinity, but she’s not out of the woods yet (literally).

CARYN

Well in the trailer for the second episode we saw Brienne tell Sansa that Arya is still alive, and we know that Brienne goes to the Riverlands this season, and I’m guessing that Sansa sends her to find Arya because she last saw her in the Riverlands? Whether or not this happens before Sansa is taken to Castle Black I don’t know. One of the great things, that Game of Thrones does is that it works like an ever-turning wheel – characters who were at their lowest point rise up (like Daenerys) and characters that were once great fall (like Stannis, Joffrey, Robb) and seriously the Starks have been down on their luck for far too long, it’s time for them to rise again. We have Sansa slowly rising, Arya struggling to fight the Waif (which I assume will make her a better fighter), Jon literally dead, Rickon currently M.I.A,, and Bran about to become one of the most powerful players. It is high time for the Stark revenge.

LIZZIE

If this isn’t the story of at least one Stark getting revenge, I think I’ll riot. You hear me G RR Martin? I’ll riot. The Brienne/Sansa scene was also my favorite of the episode. I have so much hope that Sansa can finally become the strong woman we need her to be, and I have so much love for Brienne, the badass, that I can’t even put it into words. I want to write her love letters. She’s the best person in this entire book, which probably means she’s not gonna make it. But some of the Starks better do.

What are your feelings about Theon at this point? Have you forgiven him? What role do you think he has to play in the future? Will he go back to the Bolton’s or is the old Theon back for good?

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BETH

No… no, I am not pleased with him at all and Sansa needs to quit looking to him for prompting when making decisions. She is Lady Stark and she must make her voice the one of reason, of master-ship and finality. It is her place to rule her subjects and Theon, is not even worthy to be called such. He is a traitor to the House of Stark and as such should be treated with suspicion. Which, he definitely cannot be trusted. We have no idea what will happen if confronted by Ramsey. He might be beyond psychological repair for now, and Sansa would be wise not to rely on him. Brienne needs to be told everything so that she as knight protector can make certain Sansa does not end up stabbed in the back thanks to Theon “Reek” Greyjoy.

CHLOE

I think Theon has suffered enough, and he is on the road to redemption with helping Sansa escape and trying to sacrifice himself to lead Bolton’s men off the trail. He obviously made some major mistakes, but I think it’s time to live and let live while he can still enjoy his remaining limbs. I think the old Theon is slowly returning. He’s seen (and felt) the error of his ways, and he’ll support the remaining Starks — his real family — however he can. That’s my hope.

CARYN

Urgh I hate how the show makes me forget about all the bad things a characters has done if they make them the victim long enough. Alfie Allen is amazing as Theon and he plays the character with the right amount of emotion that I cannot help but feel sympathy for him. I don’t think he will ever be the old Theon again, I think he’s been through too much but I don’t think he’ll ever be Reek again too. My prediction is that he will return to the Iron Island’s now that his elusive uncle has made a return and there is some action there again.

LIZZIE

I can’t. I don’t want to. I’m usually a forgiving person, but apparently not when it comes to TV. I understand that Sansa wants to see the best in Theon, wants to see who he once was, the boy that grew up with her, but Theon is damaged, and I don’t know that he can ever come back. Hopefully he can still do some good. But, I can’t ever really forgive him.

Daenerys is being taken to Vaes Dothrak, where she is to remain for the rest of her days. How do you anticipate she’ll get out of actually staying there? Can she convince the dothraki horde to follow her?

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BETH

This plotting is an easy fix, I think, maybe. She can pretty much fly off, if her dragon babies behave. There is a reason that Tyrion must free the dragons. I cannot believe it is solely because they are cooped up and unhappy. Right now, it feels like Dany isn’t even interested in the Dothraki. An interesting twist to her Khaleesi status where she felt most at home.

CHLOE

I’m not convinced Daenerys will even make it to Vaes Dothrak. With Jorah, Daario, and most likely Drogon on the trail, there’s a lot that could go in our Khaleesi’s favor. And if the dragon shows up… I think the Dothraki won’t need too much convincing. I don’t know what will happen, but I would absolutely love to see Drogon return, the Dothraki bow to Daenerys’ rule, and the Khaleesi head back toward Meereen to take what is hers with fire and blood… wowing Jorah and Daario all over again on the way.

CARYN

Daenerys is a charismatic leader and I think if Drogon eventually wakes up and gives his mother a hand, she will be able to convince the Dothraki to follow her when she gets her troops and goes off to conquer Westeros, I also think Jorah and Daario will eventually catch up with her.

LIZZIE

She has dragons, so it’s hard to really worry about her. Drogon will come, and he might not be the only one, if Tyrion does end up freeing the other two. And, dothraki follow strength. Three dragons is a lot of strength.

Cersei and Jamie are together again, and ready to rain hell on all their enemies. What’s their first target? What’s their endgame? And do you think the prophecy is coming true?

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BETH

Yes, that prophecy reeks of reality and it’s one of the reasons I do feel for Cersei. She loves her children, and has carried them, birthed them and given her all to them despite her fear that this fate was in store for them. Granted Joffrey was a little evil overlord who deserved the reckoning he received; however, Tommen has yet to show that side of himself and Myrcella was too nice for this Game of Thrones cruel world. Will they go down without spitting in the face of fate though? Oh heck no! Cerise and Jaime have never been so decidedly coupled than now, in their quest for revenge. The Sand Snakes might be wily and deadly, but the Lannisters are like bulls in a tea shop when it comes to killing their prey. They’re rough, tough and slaughter whatever gets in their way, not caring about where and when or how.

CHLOE

The prophecy certainly does seem to be falling into place. The Lannister twins’ most obvious target would be Dorne, but it’s far away — and the Sand Snakes will be far from easy to kill. I’m not sure if they have an endgame, since their goal seems to be to take out their enemies and stay on top — and if the world burns in the process, so be it. Perhaps the Sparrows will take priority since they are closer to home and far from Cersei’s good graces.

CARYN

Yes definitely about the prophecy, I don’t think that Tommen is long for this world, which sucks because he is a sweet kid. I’m going to assume that they want to get revenge on Dorne (or Ellaria and the Sand Snakes) for Myrcella, but they have problems at home too, I think their main target right now will be the High Sparrow, which will be where Ser Robert Strong will come into play, and start trying to take back the city for the Lannisters.

LIZZIE

I think it starts with the High Sparrow, and then it will continue all the way down to Dorne. But it starts at home, and it will probably lead to Tommen’s death. The prophecy looms large – the complete prophecy. And if that’s true, then …well, what will be left of the Lannisters? Maybe just Jamie and Tyrion.

The Dorne plot deviated from the books in a big way. Do you like what’s going on in Dorne? Or do you wish the whole thing would just go away for good? Are you team Ellaria/Sand Snakes or not?

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BETH

I was sort of surprised how quickly they wrapped up the Dorne storyline in regards to their home turf. And yet, House of Martell’s unrest has been the most interesting thing about its plot since Oberyn died. The charisma was gone, and now, the Sand Snakes lethality takes center stage. Who else gasped at the quiet brutality of Trystane?!

CHLOE

I’m so conflicted about the situation in Dorne. I think the murders of Doran and Trystane were the most shocking twists of the premiere — the kind of game-changer Thrones thrives on. But having read the books, I’m not in love with the show versions of Ellaria and the Sand Snakes. I like the unpredictability since their motivations and actions are so different, but I would prefer them to act on the motivations they have in the books, which are a lot more pure. I haven’t written the Dorne plot off yet, but it’s not my favorite.

CARYN

Sigh Dorne, I feel like they took the negative criticism of Dorne last season and just tried to abolish it all, but it just felt like a waste to me. I think I need to see the bigger picture of what they are trying to do in Dorne before I truly speculate because it just seems like a mess to me. Who is left to rule now? Ellaria and the Sand Snakes? All of whom are venge-seeking reactors, I’m hoping this is all just chaos so that it might be easier for Daenerys to get support and land in Dorne.

LIZZIE

I’m sad, and disappointed. I had high hopes for Dorne. I wanted Doran’s “fire and blood” speech. I wanted them to matter. And it seems like Game of Thrones has made this a shock for the sake of shock move. I hope it’s not true. I hope there’s an endgame here. I just can’t see it yet.

Is Jon getting resurrected? If so, when? And, if he is, what’s his first step after coming back to life?

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BETH

Of course, Jon is getting resurrected. Sometime in the next two episodes is my prediction given that no screeners were sent out, and fans were told the biggest answers would come during those episodes. The Red Woman and the Red Priest (Thoros of Myr) are a part of this season. Someway, somehow; Jon Snow will be leading the charge against Bolten and The Walkers. He will not let the Stark’s dishonor continue nor will he let the White Walkers take the North.

CHLOE

Because I have to believe it, YES. Jon Snow will be back and better than ever. Reading the Buzzfeed article about the potential significance of his blood splatter on the snow gave me the kind of life that only ridiculously involved Game of Thrones speculation can, and it renewed my Jon Snow theory fervor. I would say he’ll be resurrected in some way within the next few episodes. This may happen in the midst of some epic battle, but I kind of hope it happens during a quieter moment, so that he can scare the sh*t out of Thorne and his men before taking them out and moving onward and upward. I’m here for Jon and Dany, and I’m behind them all the way.

CARYN

Yes, I do not entertain thoughts that we will be living in a world where Jon Snow is currently dead. I really truly hope that he and Sansa meet up and when she tells him about what happened to her at Winterfell with the Boltons and that reinvigorates his need to get Winterfell back, I really need some Stark family feels.

LIZZIE
He’s coming back for sure, probably in episode three. I think episode two will end in a cliffhanger and three will be Jon Snow resurrected. Once he’s back, I think his first target will be Thorne (hopefully Olly?), and then …then, the North. Winterfell is calling. His oath is no more.

Agree? Disagree? Have any more pressing questions you want answered? Sound off in the comments below.

Game of Thrones airs Sundays at 9/8c on HBO.




Lissete Lanuza Sáenz

Senior Managing Editor

Lawyer. Dreamer. Geek. Eternal optimist. Fangirl since the dawn of time. Hates the color yellow, olives and cigarettes. Has a recurring nightmare where she’s forced to choose between sports and books. Falls in love with fictional characters.

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