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‘Game of Thrones’ Recap: Cersei Makes a Killing! Guess Who Gets a Poisoned Kiss

First things first: let’s pour one out for the baddest-ass old dame in Westeros.

After a disastrous start to Daenerys’ (Emilia Clarke) play for power in last week’s Game of Thrones, Sunday, July 30, saw her weather a series of fresh setbacks, as Cersei (Lena Headey) dealt swiftly and lethally with Dany’s allies — including, alas, everyone’s favorite cool grandma from House Tyrell. Here’s everything that went down in the latest episode, titled “The Queen’s Justice.”

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A Venomous End

After capturing a trio of lady prisoners in his raid on Dany’s ships last week, Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbæk) lost no time bringing Yara (Gemma Whelan), Ellaria Sand (Indira Varma) and Tyene (Rosabelle Laurenti Sellers) back for a shame parade through the streets of King’s Landing. Euron kept his niece as a captive (for purposes currently unknown but almost definitely terrible), but deposited the Dornish women at Cersei’s feet: the promised engagement present for a wedding that Cersei promised will occur when the war is won. In the meantime, the queen wasted no time getting justice for her murdered daughter by giving Tyene a poisoned kiss, leaving her to die in front of her own mother. She also wasted no time removing Jaime’s (Nicolaj Coster-Waldau) pants for a little incestual victory sex, because yep, they’re still doing that.

Scaly No More

In a season that’s been quite bleak so far, here’s some good news: after a very disgusting experimental treatment that involved Sam (John Bradley-West) peeling off basically all of his skin, Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen) turned up this week badly scarred but entirely cured. Hooray! That leaves Jorah en route to reunite with his beloved Khaleesi, while Sam continues to be woefully unappreciated by anyone except the flesh-eating paper mites who are his only companions at Maester college. Womp, womp.

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A Stark Reunion

Also good news: A knock at the gates of Winterfell revealed Bran (Isaac Hempstead-Wright), reunited at last with older sister Sansa (Sophie Turner). Bran immediately made things weird by telling Sansa he’d taken a psychic peek at her wedding to Ramsay Bolton (Iwoan Rheon); clearly, he needs Arya (Maisie Williams) to show up so that they can compare their supernatural skills sets and leave Sansa to run Winterfell.

An Alliance at Dragonstone

Meanwhile, Jon Snow (Kit Harington) and Davos Seaworth (Liam Cunningham) arrived at Dragonstone, where Daenerys demanded some knee-bending which Jon, stubborn as ever, refused. “You’ll be ruling over a graveyard if we don’t defeat the Night King,” he said — a threat that Daenerys, also stubborn, assumed he was just making up. (Really, these two should be able to figure out they’re related from the quality of their bickering alone.) But when news arrived that the Sands and Greyjoys were captured, Daenerys made a concession that Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) wisely pointed out meant a lot to Jon but nothing to her: allowing the Northerners to mine and forge weapons from the dragonglass stores beneath her castle. And as far as alliances go, Dany had better hang on to that one, because …

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When They Go Low, We Go Highgarden

The Unsullied invasion of Casterly Rock was supposed to be a piece of cake, thanks to Tyrion’s unique knowledge of his ancestral home’s sewer system. But when the Unsullied broke in, they found the place virtually empty — because the Lannister army was already off at Highgarden, murdering folks! The coup was swift and bloody, leaving only Olenna Tyrell (Diana Rigg) to have a last chat with Jaime about just what a dupe he is for his crazy sister: “She’s a monster, you do know that,” said the old woman, right before she swallowed a glass of poisoned wine. But before she died, she had one last move of her own to make in this game of thrones: confessing to Joffrey’s (Jack Gleeson) murder at the Purple Wedding. You know, the one Cersei convinced everyone, including Jaime, that Tyrion and Sansa pulled off? Yeah. Cersei, you have some ‘splaining to do.

Game of Thrones airs on HBO Sundays at 9 p.m. ET.

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