This post is dark and full of spoilers for Game of Thrones Season 7, episode 2, titled “Stormborn.”
Welp, looks like Game of Thrones has finally figured out how to fix its Dorne problem.
In episode 2 of Season 7, we finally found out what kind of priceless gift Euron Greyjoy intends to give Cersei to win her trust (and, might I add, we called it).
Ellaria Sand and her daughter Tyene are now in the custody of the Iron Islands’ newest punk rock ruler, and given that next week’s episode is titled “The Queen’s Justice,” you’d better believe Cersei will be looking for payback after Ellaria murdered Cersei’s daughter Myrcella last season.
Tyene’s half-sisters, Obara and Nymeria, weren’t so lucky — Euron killed ’em both without batting an eye, and he looked like he was having a great time doing it.
Then again, episode 2 also saw the return of another, much more awesome Nymeria — Arya’s long-lost direwolf — and if the show only has room for one, we’d much rather have the fluffy version.
Game of Thrones has never quite known what to do with the Sand Snakes, which is a shame, because in George R. R. Martin’s novels, they’re awesome. As a point of comparison, there are eight of them in the books, they spend much less time bickering, boasting and flashing their breasts at Bronn (who never ventures anywhere near Dorne in A Song of Ice and Fire) and more time killing people, and they don’t rely on Ellaria to tell them what to do.
But in streamlining the Dornish storyline for TV (because honestly, the political machinations in Dorne do get pretty confusing in Martin’s novels), it seems like the show lost the essence of what made Oberyn’s bastard daughters so badass — their agency.
So instead of trying to retcon the characters into less whiny versions of themselves, it seems like the show decided to cut its losses and kill them instead, to which we say… ¯_(ツ)_/¯
While we hate to see any show killing off female characters (especially women of color), on this occasion, it seems like there’s just not enough narrative real estate left in the show’s final 13 episodes to give the Sand Snakes the treatment they deserve, so while we lament what the trio could’ve been, we’re not entirely mad about their fates on the show.
It’s worth noting that the show has already deviated from Martin’s novels in its treatment of its Dornish characters, since Doran Martell and two of his three children, Arianne and Trystane, are all still alive in A Song of Ice and Fire, and still seem to have roles in Martin’s ongoing narrative. The show, meanwhile, had Ellaria and the Sand Snakes kill Doran and Trystane last season.
But hey, if the show doesn’t care about them, we don’t either.
Game of Thrones airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on HBO.