Game Of Thrones, Season 6 Episode 2 Recap: Guess Who’s Back?

Warning: Spoilers ahead.
So many things happened in this episode ("Home"), I don't even know where to begin. Well, I guess there is an obvious place: JON SNOW LIVES!
The many, many, many words devoted to theories about his resurrection over the past 10 months have paid off. Melisandre, the red priestess, has managed to revive him. Since Jon Snow spends the vast majority of this episode just lying on the same table he's been on since the season began, let's revisit how this comes about. In the last scene of the episode, Ser Davos goes to visit Melisandre, who is back to her old (young) self. He point-blank asks her if she can resurrect Jon Snow. This is a big moment for Davos. He has never trusted Melisandre, but at this point, he's out of options. He must believe. Melisandre, on the other hand, is all doubt. "Everything I believed, the great victory I saw in the flames, all of it was a lie. You were right all along. The Lord never spoke to me," she says.
"Fuck him then. Fuck all of them," Davos replies. He doesn't want God's power. He is placing his faith in this woman whom he has seen perform miracles, for better or for worse. She agrees to try. Back over to Jon Snow, clad only in a loincloth (I know this is supposed to be a serious moment, but it seems like an important detail to note), lying prone on the table, surrounded by Davos, Melisandre, and Tormund the wildling. Melisandre gently wipes Jon's many stab wounds. Speaking the words to what I assume is a spell, she cuts a lock of his hair (his beautiful hair) and some snips of his beard and burns them. She then puts her hands on his chest. She speaks the words. Nothing happens. She puts her hands on his chest again. Speaks the words. Nothing happens. Finally, she just prays: "Please." Nothing happens.
The look on her face when she realizes she has failed calls back to the end of the season premiere. Her last glimmer of faith has been extinguished. Slowly, everyone leaves. The door shuts behind Davos, leaving only Ghost sleeping on the floor. Ghost wakes up. And so does Jon. Part of me wishes this hadn't worked. It's almost too easy for Jon to be revived in the second episode of the season, in the exact way that the internet has predicted for months. On the other hand, he probably has an important story arc planned for the season, so the sooner he's up and running, the sooner he can get back to saving the world from the White Walkers.
Okay, now that we've got that out of the way, we can move on to other things. Like the fact that Bran is back!

Hey there, Bran!

Last time we saw the second-youngest Stark boy, he had just come face to face with the three-eyed raven. One whole Bran-less season later, we're back in that very same cave. Only, Bran isn't. Instead, he's with the three-eyed raven revisiting his father's childhood in an It's a Wonderful Life-style vision. "They were all so happy," he says, watching young Ned Stark play-fight with Benjen. "So were you, once," the raven (in man form, here) answers. We finally get our first glimpse of Lyanna, Ned Stark's late sister. She is speaking to Hodor, WHO SPEAKS BACK. Bran is also astounded to learn that the man who has been lugging him around the North has a name (it's Wylis). Like a young Harry Potter facing the Mirror of Erised, Bran wants to stay and get better acquainted with his father's past, but the raven won't have it. "It is beautiful beneath the sea, but if you stay too long you'll drown," he explains, channeling Dumbledore. We don't learn much more about the three-eyed raven here, but all things point to more Stark flashbacks in the future.

When the wildlings come a-knocking...

... there's nothing you can do about it. While Ser Alliser Thorne is busy trying to trick Davos and co. into surrendering, Edd returns with the wildlings — and a giant. And really, what is a locked gate to a giant? Nothing, that's what. The castle is breached, the giant establishes who's boss by bashing in someone's head against a wall, and it's all over for Alliser Thorne. His men surrender, leaving him to once again claim that "for thousands of years the Night's Watch has held Castle Black against the wildlings." "Until you," replies Tormund. Mic drop.
The rise of Tommen, first of his name.
After denying his mother the right to attend her own daughter's funeral and being chastised by his uncle for not having been to see her since she braved the entire population of King's Landing naked to return home, Tommen decides to grow a spine and visit Cersei.
She's distant at first. In a heart-wrenching moment, she asks: "Did they put her in the red gown or the gold," reminding Tommen that he did not let her go to HER OWN DAUGHTER'S FUNERAL, so yes, she is mad. To his credit, Tommen is repentant. He is a weak ruler and he knows it. He has failed both his mother and his wife, but that doesn't mean that he can't be taught. "I should have executed all of them," he tells Cersei. "I should have pulled down the sept onto the High Sparrow's head. You raised me to be strong, and I wasn't. But I want to be. Help me." "Always," she whispers back. Cersei looks at him, and for the first time since Tommen ascended the throne, her eyes are filled with pride rather than pity and fear. There might some hope for him yet.

Tyrion dreams of dragons.
Back in Meereen, the banter continues between Tyrion and Varys. (Seriously, can these two have their own show?) The situation is quite dire. The masters have retaken Astapor and Yunkai, and the dragons are not eating, prompting the following conundrum: If a dragon does not want to eat, how do you force him or her to chow down? (Have we established that they are all male?) We learn that dragons don't do well in captivity. How does Tyrion know? "That's what I do. I drink and I know things." And with that, Tyrion heads down to the depths of the pyramid to make friends with the dragons. There is nothing eerier than a dragon's face slowly appearing from the dark by torchlight. Tyrion decides to break the ice with a well-timed joke: "I'm friends with your mother. I'm here to help. Don't eat the help." Apparently, the dragons are into dad jokes, because they don't eat him. Slowly, soothing them with an anecdote about his childhood dragon obsession, he unbolts the chain collars binding the dragons and frees them. All hail Tyrion Lannister, Breaker of Chains, Father of Dragons.

Ramsay finally feeds someone to the hounds.

And you thought Roose Bolton's death was going to be the highlight of this episode. (To be honest, so did I.) I don't say this lightly, but Ramsay Bolton has finally lost it. After killing his father in cold blood, he decides to remove all obstacles to his claim to the North. And what better way to do that than by feeding his stepmother and her newborn baby boy to the hounds? All I can say about this is: 1. "Send for Lady Walda and the baby," are the most ominous words that have been spoken in this season thus far. 2. "I prefer being an only child" is classic Ramsay. Pithy, yet pathetic.

Theon is going home.
I loved the scene between Brienne and Sansa in which the former tells the latter about seeing Arya with the Hound. These two have been apart for so long that it's easy to forget they're sisters. Sansa, being Sansa, asks: "How did she look?" Brienne answers that she looked good but was not exactly dressed like a lady. "She wouldn't be," Sansa replies. Sisters to the end.
The moment between Sansa and Theon is equally moving, if more serious. He tells her he won't be going with her to the Wall. He doesn't want to be forgiven. Now that Sansa's got someone to see her safely to her destination, Theon is going home (incidentally also the name of the episode). "I would have taken you all the way to the Wall," he tells her. "I would have died to get you there." They hug, sealing the bond between the Starks and the Greyjoys once again. This may come in handy in the future.

What is not dead can die after falling off a bridge.
On the Iron Islands, Balon Greyjoy decides to brave a flimsy cord bridge in the middle of a raging gale. Problem is, there's another man on it: his brother. After a back-and-forth about who is the most iron of the Ironborn, Balon challenges his brother about a rumor he heard. During a particularly bad storm at sea, Balon's brother went mad and had to be tied to a mast. "What kind of an Ironborn loses his senses during a storm?" The reply comes swiftly: "I am the storm, brother. The first storm and the last. And you're in my way." Bye-bye, Balon.

Poor Yara.

With Balon dead, Yara learns she must go through something called a Kingsmoot in order win the throne. Perhaps she'll win and be the first woman to rule the Ironborn. And perhaps not. I wonder if Hillary Clinton watches Game of Thrones.

Some random thoughts:

Arya's story line is finally moving along, which means we might see her do something other than fighting blindly in the next episode. This is good news.
The High Sparrow's words: "Every one is poor and powerless. And yet together, we can overthrow an empire." Jaime may have met his match. And it's not one he can cut down with a sword.
Where is Daenerys?

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