8 questions (and some answers) we have after Game of Thrones season 6 episode 10
Was Qyburn on helium? Where did Arya find the time to do all that baking? What happened to Kinvara? Is House Tyrell over? What's so good about a white raven? And who was that brooding baby?
The season six finale of Game of Thrones saw the culmination of a number of story arcs and appeared to answer some long-standing fan theories too. But with so much going on you could be forgiven for not being completely clear on everything that took place – and of course, however satisfyingly plotted it is Game of Thrones always leaves some questions unanswered…
Where did Arya find the time to do all that baking?
Talk about getting served. Arya delivered Walder Frey his just desserts in the form of a gruesome pie containing the flesh of his sons, before slitting his throat just like he had done to her mother. Another three names crossed off Arya’s kill list, yet more evidence that she has mastered the arts of disguise and assassination learnt in the House of Black & White and also a pleasing reference to a slightly more ambiguous event in George RR Martin’s A Dance with Dragons (which in turn is a nod to Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus).
But when did Arya actually get the chance to kill Frey’s sons, let alone go all Mrs Lovett on them, mincing them up and baking them into pies? “They weren’t easy to carve,” she told Frey, “especially Black Walder”, and there was evidence of that in the finger poking out of the top of one of the pies when Walder lifted the lid. But even if she did stint on the fine dicing and used shop-bought pastry, Arya still had to kill them both, drag them into what had until recently been a busy kitchen catering for a feast, and then get on with the baking.
Maybe it makes more sense if we don’t take this too literally and just assume she shoved a few appendages into an existing pie for effect. Either way, it shows that revenge can sometimes be a dish best served piping hot…
What happened to Kinvara?
When badass Red Priestess Kinvara breezed into the throne room in the Great Pyramid of Meereen, rendering Varys speechless with some insider knowledge from the Lord of Light, we assumed a major new player had entered the game. But that was five episodes ago and no sign of her since.
With Daenerys and anyone else important from Meereen now on their way to Westeros, you have to wonder how much attention the city is going to get, suggesting it really was a one-off appearance by Kinvara (played by Israeli actress and singer Ania Bukstein). But if the newly anointed Dragon's Bay does continue to feature in the coming seasons, maybe new ruler Daario will find himself in need of an advisor – or someone to fill that Dany-shaped divot in his bed...
Was Qyburn on helium?
Maybe someone can enlighten me as to what he is saying but having replayed it several times, Qyburn’s first line in this episode (when he is addressing the doomed Maester Pycell) is not only indiscernible to me but also sounds exactly like he has just inhaled the contents of a helium balloon. This is exactly the sort of thing I imagine Qyburn gets up to in that dingy basement, plus I think he’d probably do it just to freak Pycell out. But maybe that's just me.
Who are Qyburn’s children?
A bit like the Baker Street Irregulars gone bad – but even more like Chuckie’s children – the band of raggedy urchins Qyburn has been plying with chocolates got disturbingly stabby this week, butchering Maester Pycell and luring the head of the High Sparrow’s Faith Militant to his own fiery green doom. I suspect they are Varys’s “little birds” – the spies he has around Kings Landing and beyond keeping him abreast of all the latest gossip. But unlike Qyburn, I doubt Varys ever had them killing for sweets.
Is House Tyrell over?
Lord Mace Tyrell is dead. His son Loris is dead. So is his daughter Margaery. All consumed by the deadly green Wildfire explosion set by Cersei. All that remains of the original Tyrell line is Lady Olenna, and at her age it’s not as if she’s about to have more children. While there will no doubt be someone keen to lay claim to the rich and fertile lands of Highgarden and the Reach, it looks like it won’t be a Tyrell.
What’s the deal with Daenerys, Dorne and the Queen of Thorns?
After her family was wiped out in the explosion, we saw Lady Olenna making a deal with Ellaria and the Sand Snakes to wreak "vengeance and justice" on the Lannisters. And then who should stroll in but Varys, promising to add “fire and blood” to that heady mix. Of course, Varys is Daenerys’s advisor and he was next seen standing beside her at the prow of one of her fleet of ships on their way to Westeros. So it looks as if Dornish and Tyrell troops could soon be joining them. Along with the Greyjoys, Dany is building quite the army...
Who was that brooding baby and what did Bran's vision mean?
Well it was Jon Snow of course. Even if you didn’t hear his name whispered, weren’t aware of the existing R+L=J theory and didn’t notice the nudge in the ribs we were given when the shot of the child seen in Bran's vision cut direct to one of Jon’s face, where else have you seen a baby with such a brooding expression?
Seriously, how did they get those worry lines on a newborn’s forehead? They have to be prosthetics or CGI, right?
Either way, this scene confirms at least one side of said fan theory – that Jon is not actually Nedd Stark’s bastard but instead the son of Nedd’s sister Lyanna. The other side of the theoretical R+L equation is that Jon’s father is Rhaegar Targaryen, who abducted Lyanna about a year before she gave birth to Jon (yep, the maths checks out).
Now dead, Rhaegar was Daenerys’s older brother, which would make Daenerys… Jon’s aunt. If Daenerys conquers King's Landing, that relationship could be handy when it comes to alliances between the north and the south. It could also be kind of awkward if she decides that she wants those alliances to extend to marriage to the King in the North and ends up inadvertently wedding her own nephew. It also raises a fair few other questions, not least can Jon talk to dragons and does he dye his hair?
What's the significance of a white raven?
“A raven came from the Citadel. A white raven. Winter is here.” Sansa and Jon had a little smirk about that together – a) because, like us, they’ve been hearing that “Winter is coming” for so long b) because they were finally where they belong, looking out from the ramparts of the newly-recaptured Winterfell and c) because it was the middle of a snow storm, so they were kind of like, “Winter’s here? No shit”.
But I digress – what exactly is the significance of the white raven? As we know, your ordinary garden variety black ravens (the two-eyed kind) are used to send messages. The white ravens are a special, supposedly cleverer breed, and are only dispatched by the Maester's council at the Citadel (where Sam now finds himself) when they’ve decided that the season has officially changed. So think of them as a really out of date weather forecast.