Game of Thrones Recap: S4E9 The Watchers on the Wall

Sam and Jon sit on the wall, gazing over, waiting for what they know is coming. Sam asks what it was like. Jon tells him that she had red hair, but that isn’t what Sam meant. Sam wants to know what it was like to love someone, since that’s the closest he’s going to get with them dying soon and all. Jon asks if he ever had relations with Gilly but he didn’t. Sam points out that there are many parts of their vows, but lying with a woman is not one of them, but it doesn’t matter because they didn’t actually do anything. Jon tries ineloquently to describe what it was like being with Ygritte and fails miserably. He sends Sam down to get some sleep, taking the watch all to himself.

A owl flies to the top of the wall. The Warg is watching them. Tormound tells a tale around the fire about sleeping with a bear. Ygritte doesn’t want to think about the bear he didn’t sleep with. She’s more concerned with her arrows, and her anger towards a certain crow. Styr taunts that she may have killed many, but she didn’t kill her crow. Ygritte isn’t so sure, but if he is alive, she plans to rectify that, and kill anyone who stands in her way.

Sam spends his time reading, when the Maester startles him. The blind man knew it was him, no one else would waste a candle to read. He has thousands of books now, but no eyes to read them. Sam was researching the wildlings. There are plenty of tall tales, but the Maester points out that he’s sure that they have plenty of stories about him as well. He’s been reading tales, and worrying about the girl that he loves the Maester knows. Sam claims to not love Gilly, but he does. The Maester wasn’t always an old man, he met many girls in his time, and one caught him, became his wife. He could describe her every feature, her being more real than Sam, but the Maester sends him off to bed rather than telling tales of lost loves. Sam hears Gilly’s voice at the gate. He orders Pip to open the gates, and Pip jumps at Sam’s curse. Gilly begs Sam to not send her away again. He vows wherever she goes he will go too. It’s a sweet moment, or would be if the horns weren’t sounded right then. War is upon them.

The warg sees that it is time. The wildling group looks to the wall. It’s time.

Jon looks ove the wall, and has a little oh shit moment. It looks like a wall of fire is heading his way. The Wildlings are coming, the wildlings are coming. The crows try to prepare for their arrival, scrambling in their preparation. All of the oil is loaded, and its not much. A hundred thousand are coming, and although Jon has a moment to say I told you so, he doesn’t. It’s too late to seal the tunnel. If the crows do their jobs they can survive, and then he can go on hating his commander, and his commander can do on wishing his wildling whore had done her job.

Sam takes Gilly below to safety. Gilly doesn’t want Sam to go, her memories of the Molestown slaughter still too fresh. She thinks he will back a bigger impact by her side, but he’s a man of the night’s watch, and he cannot abandon his brothers. They share a kiss, and then its off to war for Sam.

Pip is worried about the upcoming war, but Sam thinks that this is the perfect place to be, with all the weapons. Pip doesn’t think that Sam is afraid but he is. Wildlings are nothing compared to Whitewalkers Pip says. But Sam admits that he had no clue he would be able to kill the Whitewalker, but he had to do something to protect Gilly and the baby. He wasn’t Sam Tarly then, only instinct.

Ygritte brings news that the crows have thinned on their side in preparation for the upcoming onslaught. Styr gives the battle cry, and theyr’re off to kill some crows. The forces come from both sides. It’s like lord of the rings down there with the giants, and the mammoths. The wildlings definitely brought their A game.

Grenn drops one of the precious oil barrels when it was to be raised, and is scolded. The brothers hear the smaller band of wildlings coming from behind. The commander heads down to assist the southern gate, and so the battle begins. The groups shoot flaming arrows at eachother.

Pip is a horrible shot, he misses, as Sam reloads for him. Pip thinks that they’re going to die, and Sam tells him that they might if he keeps missing.

The commander rallies his troops. Castle Black will stand he says, the brothers will stand. The wildlings make it over the wall, and its sword to sword fighting. Pip runs for it, and Sam is close behind as Tormound goes into beast mode killing all in his path.

The wildlings attack the gates, and the brothers stand watch. Jon wants action to be done. They can’t just sit there and watch  as the giants move to tear it all down. Grenn tells the man left in charge that the commander is asking for him below. With him gone Jon can finally take charge. Jon orders the men to action. Brothers are slung over the sides and they begin to fire down onto the climbing wildlings. The giants fire back, and they enormous arrows hit their marks.

It’s an ugly scene in Castle Black. Styr is slicing crows all over. The kitchen is holding their own. The former wall commander runs for cover. Hiding out in one of the rooms below, when he comes face to face with Gilly.

Pip finally hits his target. He kills one. When he goes to shoot another, Ygritte shoots him through the neck. Sam wants to go get help, but Pip stops him as he bleeds in his arms.

Jon throws some barrels from above. It takes out some of the wildlings, but it doesn’t stop the Giants. It pisses them off. The giants and the Mammoths begin to pry open the outer gate. Jon knows that the outer gate will not hold, but he plans to hold the inner gate. He sends five men down lead by Grenn to hold the gate.

The commander orders the gate to be held, and comes up against Tormound. It’s a spectabular sword fight, but he’s stabbed and thrown from the second level. Even as he’s carried away, he yells for the gates to be held.

With his friend dead, Sam runs through the fray. A wildling spots him, and charges. Sam gets an arrow loaded just in time to shoot him. Sam sees Grenn and his men, but they need more. There aren’t any more coming. Sam needs to get to Gilly. He travels up the lift to the top of the wall.

The Oil barrels are lit, and they take out the biggest threat to the wall, all but one and he’s pissed. Sam tells Jon that the Castle is about to fall, and Jon puts Ed in charge. He gives him a little advice before he goes off to save the day.

Grenn and his brothers prepare for their last battle. A giant has made it through the outer gates, and it charges towards them. United, saying their vow, they prepare to die.

Jon enters the fray. The wildlings are making a mess of the crows. There are screams of death everywhere. A huge continuous shot of the battle, and Sam makes it to Ghost. Ghost is let loose, and he rips apart a few wildlings in his path. Styr takes on Jon, and it is brutal. Ygritte sees Jon for the first time, and although she gets him in her sights she watches the battle between the two of them. Jon gets tossed around by Styr, but Jon manages to brain him. He spots Ygritte, who is still holding him at arrow point. She can’t take her shot. Ollie shoots her. Jon runs to her, and she tells him that they should have stayed in their cave. He promises her that they can go back, but she dies in his arms.

The wildlings are nearly to the top, Ed orders the wall to be dropped, and a giant anchor breaks off the top layer, killing all of the climbers. The Wildlings have had enough for tonight, but they still outnumber them by a thousand.

Tormound is caught. The crows prepare to throw him from the top of the wall. Tormound shouts that he wildlings should throw him from the wall, and he agrees he should. Poor Jon.

Sam goes to Gilly. She and the baby are fine. Jon is prepared to leave to find Mance. Mance united all the warring tribes, and if he can find him, kill him then the war may be ended.

The inner gate was ruined but not destroyed. Grenn and his men gave their lives, but they stopped the giant. Jon tells Sam to raise the outer gate. He gives Sam his sword, he swore he would never lose it again. Sam tells Jon to come back. The gate is raised, and Jon heads out.


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