Game of Thrones series 8 episode 5 – live blog
Will Daenerys burn King’s Landing? Will Tyrion commit treason? And what’s Cersei’s grand plan? Find out in our blow-by-blow episode blog as we approach Game of Thrones’ epic conclusion…
Time flies when you’re watching various murders! We’re already in the final two episodes for Game of Thrones, but never fear – until the series ends, our live blogs are going nowhere.
Kicking off a midnight BST we’ll be looking back at last week’s story before this week’s episode starts at 2am on Sky Atlantic, when we’ll follow every twist and turn of this final clash of queens. Gentlemen, start your engines…
This live blog is now concluded
- Game of Thrones season 8 episode 4 - as it happened
- New Game of Thrones season 8 episode 5 images could spell disaster for Daenerys
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04.31am: I think, on balance, it's time for me to bow out for another week before I completely keel over in front of a very photogenic magic horse.
Overall, I was not convinced by that episode, and the Thrones series finale will have to do a LOT of repair work to make me understand what the hell happened to Dany, the woman who once locked up her dragons for months because one of them accidentally killed ONE child.
The spectacle was great, don't get me wrong, and I look forward to seeing all that filmmaking mastery onscreen when I rewatch, but plot-wise....I mean, what happened?
Maybe next week we'll have an answer when we return for the LAST EVER Radio Times Game of Thrones live blog! Please do come back and check it out, I should have some fun stuff planned as we say goodbye to Westeros forever.
Until then, though my watch has only temporarily ended. Good night!
04.25am: This aged well!
04.23am: OK yes but...
Not the babbies!
04.20am: I'll definitely give that one a rewatch to see if giving it my full, non-typing attention makes me see it differently, but at the moment? I don't think Game of Thrones is going to stick the landing.
04.18am: Getting some mixed reactions from viewers.
I feel like we'll all be debating this one for a while to come.
04.14am: Oh hey, I guess Euron died too? I didn't see him go but that was the vibe, right?
Along with him we lost Cersei and Jaime, Varys, Qyburn, the Hound and the Mountain...anyone else?
Episode three's kill count has nothing on this one.
04.12am: I have now watched that video and I remain unconvinced!
04.09am: Fun fact - the woman who helps Arya is played by the same actor who played Anna Maxwell Martin's sidekick in the last couple of Line of Duty episodes. Mother of God/Dragons!
04.02am: HBO have released the regular inside-the-episode video to show what went into the writing of this week's story - be interesting to see how they style out Dany's pivot to murder!
03.59am: So, predictions.
Next week is the last ever episode, and I can't see the series ending with Daenerys in power given what she's just done. My best guess? Jon will have to end her, and hate himself for it.
Tyrion will probably also face death after letting his brother go (though will that really matter in the grand scheme of things? Who knows?), and I harbour a secret hope that Bronn will reappear to offer him help in a trial by combat.
All I know now is, I'm glad Tormund stayed well out of all this nonsense. If Davos can too, we can take something from all this.
03.56am: Never before has this meme been more applicable.
Still, this may be good news for the economy of Oldtown! Silver lining.
03.54am: Oh hey, apparently the episode is called The Bells, not The Last War like I've been assuming.
03.52am: You know, it really did look like all the Dothraki and Unsullied died in episode three. Did a few thou just go and chill with the Glovers offscreen until they were needed?
03.48am: Jon Snow in King's Landing:
03.46am: Saw one suggestion for the horse.
Counterpoint - the horse was Jaqen H'gar in disguise.
03.43am: Saw someone comment that the whole prophecy about Cersei dying because of the "Valonquar" (High Valyrian for little brother) didn't really pan out, unless the Valonquar was the ceiling. Not a bad point.
Man, is that really the end of Cersei and Jaime? That's them done for good, going out like that? My goodness.
03.42am: Yes, I sort of think this is true also.
And is this what poor Ser Jorah died for?
03.40am: TFW you're about to murder the innocent.
03.35am: In case you wanted more misery - the trailer for next week's episode has dropped, showing Dany victorious at the head of her armies in what flirts with slightly fascistic imagery.
Also, Arya and Tyrion still look pretty upset, as well they might. My goodness.
03.30am: Apart from that though...I feel like it's not going too far to say this episode was a bit of a mess?
Look, I'm not against Daenerys turning bad per se - I just don't feel like we've built up to it enough. And this was TOO big a fall, like when Anakin Skywalker in Revenge of the Sith went from "well Palpatine must have a trial, the Jedi are not executioners" to "Welp, better murder all this children" within a solid 27 minutes.
More like this
I feel like there was a middle ground between "do nothing" and "murder thousands of innocents for literally no reason" that she rather failed to explore. She could have just flown to the Red Keep and burned that down! Why was she strafing random suburban streets?
03.29am: OK well that's the episode! Loving this mix of the Light of the Seven and Rains of Castamere playing over the end credits. One thing you can say about this series is that the musical choices remain on point.
03.28am: Well, I'd say there are a lot of opportunities for King's Landing real estate right about now! Exciting time for investors!
03.27am: Oh, it's a METAPHORICAL horse. That she will escape on.
03.26am: Arya us left in the ruins, and she is not impressed. I mean that's probably an understatement.
The kid with the toy horse burned too - just like little Shireen. Can't see Jon agreeing with this.
At least this immortal horse is here!
03.23am: Jaime and Cersei are hanging with the dragon skulls, and enjoying a medley of their best songs - Light of the Seven, Rains of Castamere and so on.
"Nothing else matters. Nothing else matters, only us." Old quote klaxon!
If this is how Cersei goes out she did not get a lot to do this season.
Yep, they dead! Crushed in Daenerys' rampage.
03.21am: Arya survived, ofc. And now she's helping save a few survivors, or at least that one nice lady.
Oh, and now the nice lady is dead. Goodness' sake. WHAT is Dany thinking?
03.19am: Jon decides discretion is the better part of valour, while Arya wakes up with some seriously gnarly injuries.
Who knew the Night King would be a cinch compared to this?
Run Arya! Run sideways! The Bell Tower is falling on you!
03.17am: The Mountain is doing his signature Oberyn move! Meanwhile, the Hound stabbed his brother THROUGH HIS HEAD and he was still OK so this doesn't seem like a fair fight.
OK he tackled him into the inferno....I'm calling that for both of them.
(Look, he's had a few different looks over the years).
03.15am: Arya is going through the death and destruction caused by Dany, and I can imagine it getting a little awkward if Jon's ex kills his little sister.
Cutting between the Hound and Arya as they both face their death on the floor.
The Mountain looks so weird! Hey that nice lady helped Arya. Bet she'll die.
03.13am: Back to Cleganebowl, which is actually, genuinely confirmed for the first time. And Sandor is losing, as his brother is a gross immortal zombie from a video game.
Should have stocked up on potions before you took on budget Thanos!
03.11am: Cersei is cowering in the map room when mostly not-dead Jaime finds her and they have a nice hug.
But what about Brienne??
03.10am: The Mountain is overcoming his programming! Oh my God they killed Qyburn!
But who cares about that when we're getting Cleganebowl! And seeing how messed up The Mountain is under his helmet now!
03.09am: The Red Keep is torn down, and I can't wait to see how that looks in the opening credits.
The Hound, though, is still keen on his petty personal revenge (get hype).
03.07am: We're back, and the Hound and Arya are still infiltrating the Red Keep. And arguing, as per.
The Hound is basically saying, don't be like me! Live your life.
"You come with me, you die here." Holding her head in an fatherly way.
"Sandor," Arya says. "Thank you."
I quite liked that little bit. More of that please.
03.06am: A quick look at reaction online suggests people are....NOT massively into this episode. Oh dear.
03.04am: MEANWHILE, IN THE NORTH:
Tormund and Ghost share a bowl of giant's milk.
Sam reads some new books.
Sansa organises the grain distribution.
Yohn Royce is forced to leave various conversations when more important people enter the room.
All is well.
03.03am: Ad break.
What is happening?? What the hell is wrong with Dany?
03.01am: Oh wait, only Jaime got stabbed. My bad.
Also, Drogon's flames have ignited the caches of wildfire Dany's dad buried under the city, which seems like gilding the lily a little as far as "turning the whole place to ashes" goes.
Oh, now Jaime has return-killed Euron and walked off his stab wound.
"I'm the man who killed Jaime Lannister" says Euron. Not quite the achievement it once was.
03.00am: Jaime and Euron have stabbed each other after a brief fight. Not QUITE the way I imagined the Kingslayer going out...
02.59am: I would definitely say that Daenerys' actions today out that whole "Breaker of Chains" reputation at...
02.58am: HOW is Euron still alive? Just so he can fight Jaime?
02.57am: Jon's losing his voice again. And probably deciding he needs to do something about Dany.
Why didn't Dany just flight straight to the Red Keep?
02.55am: Davos is trying to save some people, which is good, but even the Northern soldiers are rampaging.
WHY IS DAENERYS JUST KILLING EVERYBODY FOR NO REASON?
02.53am: Grey Worm has also gone somewhat off book, killing a man who had surrendered and starting a bloody massacre (and I mean BLOODY). This is really sad! I mean as much for Grey Worm and Dany's good intentions as all the people they're murdering.
02.52am: Hmm OK it seems like Daenerys just wants to kill Cersei, which...fair enough?
Also, we saw that dragon shadw over KL in one of Bran's visions! Very cool.
Less cool - Daenerys just killed loads of civilians for no reason.
02.51am: Come on Daenerys, be nice! The bells have rung and the city has surrendered.
02.50am: I don't know if you can call this The Last War so much as The Last Very Short Skirmish.
02.49am: Lannister soldiers have surrounded, just as Dany was about to burn everybody. Phew.
02.48am: Kind of love all the random soldiers who keep trying it on with the main Protagonists! Come on guys, have some sense, sneak out of the Mud Gate or something.
02.47am: Qyburn's inner monologue as Cersei ignores all his sound advice:
02.46am: I guess you could say the dragon defences have....Scorpi-gone.
Also, all the Northmen etc are reampaging through King's Landing, which can't be good for those nice common people. Tyrion looks pretty unhappy at the destruction.
02.44am: Let out an audible HA! as Drogon explodes the gates of KL from the inside, pretty much obliterating the Golden Company.
A lot of Dothraki survived apparently, and are now tearing their way through the city.
Wait, what was the point of the Golden Company? Was that it?
02.43am: In all seriousness though - did Daenerys take Drogon on a dodging course? Or was Rhaegal just really thick?
TBF both times dragons have been killed they've been riderless, so maybe it helps having someone direct them.
Now we're back! Tense stand-off outside KL.
02.40am: This is another one of those episodes that I'll need to rewatch post-live blog - keep on missing action moments when I'm typing.
Anyway, we're in our second ad break now. Dragons are very powerful again. Scorpions are useless again. As you were.
02.39am: Maybe stop yelling "fire" random gunner dudes, you're giving the dragon ideas.
02.38am: OK, this time destroying the scorpions appears cartoonishly easy.
Quite enjoying this twist on the dragons theme to make it sound more urgent and dark.
02.37am: Drogon flying attack on the Iron Fleet! Be careful Dany, or he'll be....
02.34am: Being reminded of the bell surrender again. Methinks that won't go to plan.
All the common people are being crushed in "Operation Human Shield," including Arya, Jaime and the Hound.
Oh wait, they were trying to get INTO the Red Keep. My bad.
02.32am: King's Landing soldiers prepare for an attack, and we get a lot of shots of the common people to remind us what's at stake.
Meanwhile, The Hound has slightly hilariously put on the world's least convincing disguise, and Jaime is wearing the exact same one! maybe they had a "useless black hood" sale at Winterfell before they both left.
Golden Company are ready for action. including their leader, the only one of them who gets a name (Harry Strickland).
02.30am: Tyrion and Jaime have a tearful goodbye, so I'm guessing Jaime doesn't make it out of the episode live.
Now we're back with the Iron Fleet, and some ominous music suggests Dany might be about to get some revenge.
02.29am: Why does Tyrion keep trying to save Cersei when she's tried to kill him SO MANY TIMES?? This is slightly infuriating.
02.26am: Tyrion talks his way into Jaime's cell, where he's tied up against a post just like he was in Robb Stark's camp back in the day! Oh, happy season two vibes.
Yes, apparently Jaime's character development was just undone and he wanted to be with Cersei. Tyrion's big plan is to get Jaime inside to talk Cersei out of her doomed war. Hey, remember when Tyrion used to be smart?
02.24am: Tyrion wants Davos to smuggle him something into King's Landing. If this ends up killing Davos, we riot.
Meanwhile, Arya gets stopped by nothing guards AGAIN. She really is making a habit of it.
02.21am: After all this time, Daenerys has finally decided to ignore Tyrion and burn down King's Landing.
He insists she give them a chance to surrender, and ruing the bells, or he'll be...
Oh, and also Daenerys has captured Jaime trying to return to Cersei.
"The next time you fail me will be the last."
OK, maybe I should have saved the "Tyri-off" joke for that.
02.19am: Remember back in Meereen when Dany insisted on having a trial for one of the Sons of the Harpy to find true justice, rather than jumping to execution? I miss that Dany.
02.17am: Into our first advert break here in the UK, and I'm not loving the route they're pushing Dany down. Maybe she does need Dario to snap out of it after all!
Also, sad to see the back of Varys. I do feel like an arch-schemer like him would have had some sort of back-up/escape plan, but hey, look what happened to Littlefinger.
02.15am: Man, Daenerys just keeps trying to stick it on her nephew.
He's not into it, and apparently this is making Daenerys...evil? Because if she can't have love, she'll have fear? Hmm...
02.13am: Grey Worm and Daenerys there, continuing their shared hobby of burning things.
Jon is clearly not happy about all the murdering etcetera.
"[Sansa] killed Varys as much as I did"
*Thor face* DID SHE THOUGH?
02.12am: And out goes Conleth!
His story began with magical flames, and ended with them.
Another season one Big Dog bites the dust.
02.11am: "I hope I deserve this, truly I do. I hope I'm wrong. Good bye old friend."
Poor Varys. Conleth Hill has done a truly terrific job with this character.
02.10am: Varys, arrested, is taken to the fun murder beach where Stannis used to burn people. I might be able to sense where this is going...
02.08am: Daenerys has clearly run out of the Urban Decay Game of Thrones eyeshadow range - available in all stores now (probably? I don't know).
Looks like Daenerys has had just about enough of Varys doing his Varys thing. Also, stop sending incriminating messages THROUGH the official Dragonstone postal service!!
02.07am: Daenerys suspects Jon betrayed her, Tyrion rats out Varys.
You could say Dany's having a bit of a...
Tyrion is trying to dig Varys out of it but....this might be beyong his powers.
02.06am: Jon is having none of it.
"SHE is my Queen."
02.05am: Is Varys about to get Jon onside? Come on, he's basically Ned Stark, he's not going to double-cross.
Jon would not be a good king! You literally said he was weak last episode!
o2.03am: Here's Varys sending off his treason scrolls. Fine penmanship.
One of Varys' little birds is called...Martha? That's not a very Thrones-y name is it?
02.00am: Here we go! Opening credits!
Looking for changes...ooh, they've added the scorpions to King's Landing! Like it.
01.59am: With one minute to go I will just say - no, I'm not talking about that stupid baby dragon theory.
No, Drogon did not go off and have secret kids on his gap year that will turn up to torch Euron today. Come on guys.
01.57am: But what if all my wittering is ABOUT Game of Thrones, Craig?
01.55am: Only a few minutes to go!
Just FYI I am having some slight internet issues today, so you may have to bear with me if we lose picture at some point. Fingers crossed we won't cut out during a HUGELY important scene like we did during episode three...
01.50am: A message from one of our loyal readers - I've heard from quite a few people that they actually just read these instead of watching the show, and it makes me guilty for all the bits I leave out of the recapping.
So if this live blog ever HAS made you miss a key part of an episode for Thrones bluffing purposes, I can only apologise.
01.48am: Speak of the devil...count us in, Davos!
01.46am: It does sort of suck that Jon hasn't told Davos, Westeros' greatest hype-man, about his true identity. Just think of the PR opportunities!
Also, Davos is so loyal (babes), he deserves the truth more than bloody VARYS.
01.43am: I wrote a bit about who I thought was likely to die in this week's episode, but rewatching episode four just makes me more convinced Varys is a goner. Why would you discuss treason in such a huge echoey room? There are thousands of Unsullied wandering around the place!
01.38am: Ah yes, who could forget that chilling stand-off between Ned Stork and Shirley Lambaster?
01.35am: Now here's a fun thing - a lot of people have pointed out that this week's episode falls on Mother's Day in the US, possibly hinting at a grisly end for one of the "mothers" (i.e. Dany or Cersei), just like how Tyrion killed Tywin on an episode that aired on Father's Day.
Also, I think we learned the truth about Jon's mother on a Mother's Day? Can't quite remember. Wouldn't put it past them!
01.27am: By the way, please feel free to drop a message about the episode or the blog at any point and I'll try to reply to it - we don't have comments on the website at the moment, but if you tweet me @RadioTimes or @huwiemcchewie I should be able to get back to you. Always nice to hear from the readers, and be reminded this blog isn't just me shouting about dragons into the void.
01.24am: I am a little confused as to whether Tormund and Sam saying goodbye to Jon means the actors have left the series. It didn't feel...final enough? But maybe that's just what I think when someone escapes this series intact.
C'mon though - surely Sam will at least be back again, right?
01.18am: Forgot to add this tweet to Leslie Jones' RuPaul comparison earlier but hey, it still makes me laugh so in it goes here instead.
Don't worry, GoT fans, I'll make endless references to the Crannogmen and House Dustin if I ever end up blogging Drag Race, just to be fair.
01.16am: Grey Worm is STRESSED.
01.13am: Just turned on the repeat of last week's episode, and have been reminded of another part of the story I forgot – Jaime and Brienne got together, slept together and then broke up, all within the one episode!
Again, this feels like a part of the story that could have been a bit more spread out considering their slow-burn attraction since season two. Still, maybe the series has a few surprises left for me there as well.
01.02am: In other news, this week's Thrones-themed socks are repping...House Targaryen!
Yes, in a week rumoured to have a lot of dragon action it seemed only appropriate - thought unfortunately, they also mark the end of my Thrones-themed sock collection, leaving my feet cruelly unshod for the finale next week.
Unless of course, I have something very special up my sleeve (or, er, trouser cuff) for next time...
00.59am: Just over an hour to go until the episode, and fans are desperate to find the answers to their burning questions.
Can Huw remain coherent operating on barely any sleep? Will his brain actively start to shut down as he tries to come up with some snappy puns about Qyburn (just you wait)?
It's always good to add a twist to the format in the penultimate episode, don't you think?
00.54am: Regular readers may recall my habit of slipping RuPaul's Drag Race references into this blog, but Gosh Darn it if Saturday Night Live's Leslie Jones hasn't beaten me to the punch this time.
Look, all I'm saying is, I think Daenerys would nail the lipsync...and if anyone can TRULY sashay away with dignity, it's Cersei.
00.50am: What we DO know about this episode is that it features the long-heralded clash between Daenerys and Cersei's armies in the (suddenly desert-like) King's Landing surroundings. Can Unsullied, Dothraki and Northmen defeat Essosi mercenaries? Will Daenerys find a way around Qyburn's (oddly overpowered) anti-dragon machines (as once described by Sue Perkins)?
Personally, my money's still on the dragon. Though if any show would have a final episode where the villain just spent an hour chuckling and knocking back glasses of Dornish Red, it'd be Game of Thrones.
00.43am: For some people, bringing back 'It's a-me, Dario' Naharis would apparently be enough to save the series, and there are actually a few rumours that Michael Huisman's sellsword (who stayed in Meereen when Daenerys set sail back in season 6) will be making a comeback in this week's episode.
Much as it would be nice to reunite Dany with one of the people who genuinely believed in her - after Missandei and Jorah's deaths it's basically just Grey Worm now, and who knows what kind of emotional state he's in - but to be honest, at this stage the series seems more keen to shed secondary and tertiary characters than reintroduce some, so I wouldn't bet on it.
00.40am: Last week's episode was NOT universally acclaimed, it seems fair to say - in fact I'm pretty sure it's the lowest-rated episode ever of the series, though to be fair internet pile-on culture is such that it's hard to know whether part of that is viewers who disliked it egging each other on to downvote the episode on Rotten Tomatoes – so I'll be interested to see if David Benioff and DB Weiss can pull things back in this episode.
If not, well, we'll always have that prequel whenever it comes out...
00.34am: Yes, I am of COURSE talking about the now-infamous coffee cup that can be spotted during the feast scene near the beginning of the episode, sparking hundreds of memes, an unexpected marketing boost for Starbucks and a fun competition where various graphic artists tried to insert digital coffee cups into famous films.
All I have to add on this topic is that I have found it VERY annoying how everyone called it a Starbucks cup when it was really clearly a different brand (a place called Paper Cup, which is near the studios in Belfast), and that continuity mistakes are just a fun little part of big productions, not a sign of the series' terminal decline.
That said, I DID find it weird that HBO have already edited the cup out of the episode. Not sure why but it seems like...a little bit of history erased? Anyway, not the most pressing issue of the day really.
00.28am: The newly-christened AeJon Stark-garyen, meanwhile, showed exactly why Ned Stark never shared his secret with the family, as after a little chat with his sisters news of Jon Snow's true identity was spreading like wildfire (hopefully that's not a spoiler for tonight).
All of a sudden, Varys is fully #TeamJon, Tyrion is conflicted and Daenerys is losing her grip - and that was BEFORE good ol' Uncle Euron yeet-ed Rhaegal with a scorpion bolt and Cersei made Missandei join the Unskullied.
So yes, episode four was a LOT - which could explain why the hardworking continuity editors missed on tiny detail during the episode...
00.18am: Anyway, now that the housekeeping is taken care of, let's take a look back at last week's episode The Last of the Starks.
Following their victory at the Battle of Winterfell (God, doesn't THAT feel like a long time ago?) we saw our heroes celebrating and mourning their dead - but with the great uniting evil dealt with, the fault lines were beginning to show in their alliance.
In other words, Sansa still doesn't rate Daenerys, Arya doesn't really rate anyone, Bran now only rates different makes of historical wheelchairs on Amazon and the rate of the CGI artists working on Ghost got high enough to send the last onscreen direwolf off to the North with nary a pat from Jon. Shame! Shame!
00.10am: As per usual I'm Huw Fullerton, your regular live blogger, and this week I'm coming to you live and loud from the Republic of Ireland, aka the bit of Ireland that ISN'T actually where they film Game of Thrones. But look, it's close enough!
And my new location means the return of a very special guest star...our one true King...Spike, First of his Name.
He is currently sleeping and I am somewhat jealous.
00.05am: ALSO in classic Game of Thrones style, I stayed very late at a wedding last night and it appears that I died (or at least that's how I feel), so this live blog is coming to you from beyond the grave! Robb Stark has nothing on me.
00.01am: Hello and welcome to this, the penultimate Radio Times Game of Thrones live blog!
In true next-to-last-Thrones episode style, this week’s blog will feature EITHER my grisly death or my triumphant victory in a battle against my foes (please send your votes to @RadioTimes or @huwiemcchewie) – and between that, we’ll try to fit in some commentary about this week’s story, which will see Daenerys take on Cersei in a fiery battle for King’s Landing.
Will Daenerys go full Mad Queen? Will Jon find even more reasons to mope about? And will Varys PLEASE stop plotting treason in huge echoey rooms? Let’s find out together.