“The Red Woman” – Game of Thrones Season 6, Episode 1 – Review ****



It is baaaack! We waited a year to get back to Westeros, particularly to know how is Jon “Swiss Cheese” Snow get back to life. And the answer is: we still don’t know!!! But do we care? Well, kinda, but the plate is a bit full at the moment as it is.

Of course, the first episode will always feel like a massive catch-up from all those lovely cliffhangers from last season, which we were all remembered on those 2 minutes of pre-title montage. Ah yeah, Stannis was killed. Yeah, Myrcella died poisoned by the Snake Lady (the first thing that goes with time are the names of characters, isn’t it?). Yes, Maergery is still in jail. There’s some kind of zombie giant risen from the dead to defend Cersei. Tyrion and Varys are having fun ruling Meereen, while Jorah and Daario look for Daenerys. She isn’t doing too well, having been captured by a giant khalasar. Arya is blind, and keeps on her Karate Kid training ways. Her sister Sansa managed to parkour out of Winterfell with Theon, only to almost be caught again, and saved last minute by badass Brienne of Tarth. Ramsay Bolton is heartbroken as his favourite toy is dead, and the other two ran away. No sign of Gendry (who?), Sam, Littlefinger or Bran Stark. And yes, Jon Snow is still very much dead. Ser Davos locked himself in a room with the corpse and a few of Jon’s friends. Melisandre comes, looks, and goes away. Not exactly the salvation we were all hoping for. Maybe that cool zombie king will be more helpful. But then – bam! The episode ends up with Melisandre getting naked in front of a mirror. And no, my friends, it is not a good, happy vision. Let us just say she looks a very different person without make-up and jewels on. Is she the right person to get Mr Snow out of his death coma? Is her Lord of Light a massive prick? We’ll have to wait yet another week or two to find out.

Daenerys definitely didn't sign up for this bootcamp

Daenerys definitely didn’t sign up for this bootcamp

This is the point where most of the book plot has ended (apart from some massive Greyjoy stuff and other things that appear to have been merciless decapitated), so all is fair in Love and Fantasy Adaptations  – particularly when Game of Thrones fans are so used to having their expectations stabbed, burnt and thrown into the kennels. Anything can happen. For The Red Woman, the reveal of Melisandre as somewhat older than she appears, Brienne rescuing Sansa, Sand Snakes killing techniques and, dare we say, the rude sexual jokes of the Dothraki after capturing Daenerys (who seems now more and more a spoiled little brat instead of a powerful, dignified queen) were the high points of an episode which managed to deliver without actually delivering – meaning, by failing to give us an answer regarding Jon Snow’s relationship with Death. Cause he can’t possibly be dead. No way. Ha ha, good joke. C’mon, stop fooling around and wake up the boy already.

Sansa and Theon enjoy the great pleasures of the outdoors during the English Spring

Sansa and Theon enjoy the great pleasures of the outdoors during the English Spring

As denial is not just a river in Egypt, and book readers can’t spoil any more of what’s going to happen, all that is left for us is to wait like sitting ducks for our next fictional character mourning. Bets, anyone?

PS: Yeah, that Dornish prince was killled, completely forgot about that. I’m sure it’s not important.

Episode Stats:

Boobs: 4 (from the same person!!!)

Sex scenes: 0

Dragons: 0

Dead Jon Snow: 1

Game of Thrones plays on Sky Atlantic on Monday evenings.

Sara is originally from Coimbra, Portugal, where she studied Film Studies before moving to London to enrol in film school. Having made her first short film about her neighbour's chickens when she was 9 (a dystopian sci-fi, still her favourite genre), she is now a London-based film director and editor, and also a writer for the Portuguese Take Magazine. She is a huge fan of Lars Von Trier, Krysztof Kiéslowski, and David Lean.