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Game of Thrones Season 8 Premiere“Winterfell” Review and Breakdown

★★★★

While ‘Winterfell’ serves mostly as set-up for the rest of the season, it still serves enough memorable moments and raises enough questions to keep interest high.

Finally arriving at Winterfell, Daenerys and Jon’s alliance is not as warmly received as hoped, especially by Sansa. As their love grows, new problems arise when Sam enters the picture with game changing news to Jon. Meanwhile in King’s Landing, Cersei grapples with Jaime running away, her elephant-lacking army, and Euron Greyjoy.
Below are the biggest moments of the episode, ranked and discussed.

Jon rides a Dragon

In one of the lighter moments of the episode, Jon rides a dragon for the first time in an exciting sequence. It’s sweet foreshadowing that the dragons are so nice to him and Dany doesn’t even bat an eye, probably blinded by her love for him.

Cersei Finally Gives In to Euron

Ever since his introduction, we know Euron Greyjoy’s ultimate wish is to sleep with either Cersei or Dany, and it finally game true this episode when Cersei finally let him despite initial take-back. While at first it seems as something she wouldn’t do, it’s important to remember she hardly does something without a plan; her upcoming baby might be better off now if he’s believed to be a Greyjoy if she really wants Jaime killed as we later learn she wants Bronn to do.

Arya Reunites with Jon and Gendry

Arya has two cute reunions in the episode, one with Jon that reminds you of their inseparable bond from the first season, and her (maybe?) love interest Gendry, who might become important later in the season.

Bran and Jaime’s Awkward Reunion

It’s ranked low on the list because we hardly see anything of it and Bran is barely “Bran” nowadays, but it’s still an exciting moment as the show comes full circle with an event that essentially initiated one of the biggest conflicts in Westeros.

Sansa vs Daenerys

Sansa doesn’t take Dany’s presence in the North with any joy, as you would expect now from her. While she does raise some excellent points regarding food, you can’t help but think Sansa might feel her northern power a bit threatened by the new beautiful queen. Sansa also shines in the episode when she correctly points out how Cersei probably lied to all of them.

Sam tells Jon the Truth

In one of the most heartbreaking scenes in the episode, Sam learns from Daenerys herself that she had to kill his family in an earlier episode because of their inability to bend the knee. Sam, heartbroken, quickly reacts by telling Jon the truth about his parentage in a potentially game changing moment of the show, becoming the true heir to the Iron Throne and family relative of his new love (both news that should definitely throw Dany for a loop and unfortunate karma for killing the Tarlys despite Tyrion warning her against it). Conclusion: you don’t want Sam as your enemy.

Check back next week for a review of the next episode.

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