Before The Thrones

S6 Episode 6: “Blood Of My Blood”

 An old foe comes back into the picture. Gilly meets Sam’s family. Arya faces a difficult choice. Jaime faces off against the High Sparrow.

The title and description for this weeks’ upcoming ep of GoT has me feelin’ extra jazzed up, I have to say. For starters, “blood of my blood” refers to the style of address between a Dothraki Khal and his bloodriders, as it is custom to consider each other’s blood their own. This could simply be an ode to Dany becoming the “Great Khaleesi,” but could it be more..?

What are some of the Northern hoods we can expect Jon to hit up?

Based on prior events, we know that the Karstarks and Umbers have pledged fealty to Ramsay (although there’s an internet theory that’s gaining steam that states otherwise). Additionally, we know that Brienne and Pod have been sent to Riverrun to treat with the Blackfish and what remains of the Tully army. Beyond that, it’s slim pickings. Davos and Jon admonished as much, and it appears their plan is to curry as much favor as possible with the tinier Northern clans hoping to form a strength in numbers army.

There is one family, which has not been prominently featured in the Show but is critical in the Books, that Jon may be able to gain support from and turn the odds. That family is the Manderlys of White Harbor. Historically, they’ve been the most loyal and powerful of loyalists to the Starks. That seems pretty good, huh? They also are known as the richest family of the North, since they control the only legitimate city in the region, as well as the most affluent port for trade. Although the Manderlys have not been talked about in depth in the past, their potential to swing the impending war has been discussed at length by both Jon and Ramsay. To the viewer’s knowledge, they have yet to pledge fealty to either side, but that strong historical fealty is something that should play a role moving forward.

What relevant info do we need to know about Sam’s family?

House Tarly of Horn Hill is a noble house of The Reach, the same region as House Tyrell of High Garden. House Tarly is one of the strongest sworn to House Tyrell. They are known for their pride and honor in battle, and have even been known to carry the motto “First in battle.” They also house a valyrian greatsword known as Heartsbane. Its a badass two handed blade wielded by Sam’s father, Randyll. He’s the most relevant character for plot development purposes. He’s also responsible for Sam taking the black, as he explained back in season 1.

Randyll Tarly was always disappointed in Sam as his first son for his non-aggressive and passive disposition. He’s known as a fierce and notarized warrior, whose escapades date back to Robert’s Rebellion.

So, obviously returning home is huge for Sam. We can assume his family had no intent of seeing him again considering he had taken the Black only 4 years ago. Plus, since his Father forced him to take the Black, we can also assume that Sam’s relationship with his father is rocky at best. I’m sure bringing in a Wildling that you’ve nominally taken as your wife and who has a bastard baby from Craster’s Keep will make things better!

Who could the “old foe” be in reference to?!?!

IMHO, there is only one option here… Walder fucking Frey. He’s been rumored to make his long awaited return to our TV screens this season, and it looks like episode 6 is his time to shine. How he will reemerge remains to be seen. But, my best guess is that Brienne and Pod will run into ole’ Walder while making their journey to Riverrun (since they’ll have to cross through The Twins). Also, when we last left off with Walder, he was diabolically conversing with Roose Bolton when he mentioned the fact that he now has lordship over Riverrun, technically speaking, by declaration from the Lannisters.

I don’t know if my heart can handle the type of PTSD Walder is going to inflict on it this coming Sunday. So let’s hope Brienne has some cards up her sleeve.

Are there any alternative symbolic meanings for “blood of my blood” potentially?

Why yes there is! Could this finally be the episode that we see the full extent of the Tower of Joy? The title seems pretty apt for that. Plus, Bran seemed pretty  bent on returning to that flashback after it was cut short by the Three Eyed Raven last time around.

But IMHO, we will get some additional scenes from the Tower of Joy, only to be cutoff right before the reveal of some truly Westeros altering information… Something along the lines of, Bran can’t hone his powers without the Raven yet, or the Walkers interrupt him while he’s greenseeing will make sure to abruptly end any monumental info from being witnessed during this still mid-season ep.



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