Spoilers for previous episodes.
After the emotional highs and spectacular battle of last episode, “Eastwatch” is a quieter installment of Game of Thrones, but what it lacks in spectacle it more than makes up for in character. You’ll be pleased (or not pleased, depending on what you think of them) to learn the fates of Jaime and Bronn early on. Sometimes shows, particularly ones with large ensembles, like to dance around a cliffhanger for a bit, but it flowed much better to focus right back in on the aftermath of Daenerys’ victory. Peter Dinklage gets some great material in this episode, and Liam Cunningham gets some of his best yet. I’ve said before that Davos has been a highlight in his scenes this season, but he gets a more central role this week, to great results. There are two very effective uses of familiar musical themes from the show, which I’ll get into on the next page.
There’s plenty to enjoy here, and there are some nice callbacks to the first season, as well as the return of a long-absent character (you can probably guess, but I’ll save it for the next page). Writer Dave Hill handles the characters deftly, and it’s the sort of episode where character interactions are very rewarding for longtime fans. Director Matt Shakman returns from last week, doing well with two very different kinds of episodes. It definitely feels like we’re heading towards an exciting final two episodes of the season, and it’ll be interesting to see how some of the developments in “Eastwatch” play out.
Major plot spoilers on the next page: