Wait ... was I the only person in the Seven Kingdoms who thought this whole let’s-capture-a-White Walker-and-bring-him-back plan was the stupidest idea since the male romper? (No, that is not a homophobic or gender-normative statement. The male romper is a shitty idea, and by “shitty,” I mean that the good Lord has only blessed me with one talent in life: the ability to drop a deuce literally anywhere. How the hell am I supposed to do that if I’m wearing a male romper? Am I supposed to get buck naked in a rest stop bathroom because I wanted to wear a onesie to the cookout? And where am I supposed to hang my romper in the meantime? These are the questions no one wants to ask!)
Anyway, the idea that going into white people’s neighborhood and kidnapping a white (literal) crackhead would somehow convince Cersei Trump to help stop the White Walker supremacy movement was as silly as thinking cops would stop shooting black people once everyone saw dashcam and bodycam video.
You’re probably waiting for me to dish out a “woke” explanation about how episode 7 was about a few counterprotesters who decided to go fight the white (walker) nationalists who were trying to take over their country. But “Beyond the Wall” wasn’t about that at all. It was essentially a highlight reel of every black fight I’ve ever seen.
Whether it’s the Ques vs. the Kappas, drunk dudes scrapping at a nightclub, a showdown in the high school parking lot, or going to Charlottesville, Va., to fight Nazis, every black melee has the same template and the same cast of characters:
The Hype Man
Beric Dondarrion will hype up an ant to fight an elephant. If Daenerys is the queen of post-victory speeches, Beric is the king of kicking off a donnybrook. He’s the friend who asks, “Did you hear what he said? If someone said that to me, I’d whip his ass.” Beric doesn’t necessarily start the fight. He hypes you up to start shit.
Just listening to him talk to Jon Snow about being a “shield that guards the realm of men” had me ready to go punch White Walkers in their mouths. Then I remembered: Beric can’t die. I can.
The One Who Gets Beat Up
You know who I’m talking about. He’s usually the smallest guy with the biggest heart. It’s not that he can’t fight, or that he isn’t brave, but someone’s gotta take an L. Sometimes he loses the fight out of principle and sometimes because he is in the wrong place at the wrong time. John Lewis on the Edmund Pettus Bridge. Viola Liuzzo in Selma, Ala. Ricky in Boyz n the Hood. Meek Mills in everything. Thoros of Myr. And anyone wearing a man bun.
Although, Thoros, it might have been nice if you could’ve told the homies you had a fire sword. Don’t you think everyone would have liked a flame-throwing saber if they knew that was a possibility? Niggas like Mormont out here fighting polar bears with nothing but a couple of steak knives and you got a whole-ass sword made by Bic? That’s not right, dude.
The Ride or Die
Here is the truest test of friendship: Wait until 2:43 a.m., call your best friend and whisper into the phone: “Hey, I can’t talk right now, but I need you to come to my house and help me bury a body.” Then hang up.
Most of your friends would say, “Fuck nah,” and go back to sleep. A select few would call you back to ask what was going on. Some might text you back and say, “I would help you out, but you know I have warrants.” Jorah Mormont would show up at your door with a shovel. He’s been down with Dany since the beginning and took the trip beyond the wall even though he’s just getting over a terrible case of severe third-degree ashiness.
I wonder if he brought some lotion with him.
He’s Good People, but Not Built for This
He’s down for the cause, but you know he shouldn’t be involved. He’s got a good job, a good future, and he’s not ready for this. Gendry is that guy. Just because he’s white doesn’t mean he’s afraid, but he’s the type of guy who brings a hammer to a sword fight. Plus, he went to community college and became the best blacksmith in the Seven Kingdoms.
He’s great for going to get some backup, and someone’s gonna have to talk to the cops when the police arrive.
The Friend You Can’t Take Anywhere
We all have one homeboy or homegirl we don’t want to go out with because we know there’s going to be a fight. Her name is usually “Stephanie,” everyone calls her “Step,” and she will start a fight with anyone—the waitress at the restaurant, her boyfriend at the club or even the pastor’s wife at church because the first lady “kept looking at her funny.”
“The Hound” is that friend. He never has a good word to say about anyone and usually has a scowl on his face. You bring him along because you know he can handle himself, but he can’t let anything slide. He always ruins the night by doing some dumb shit like getting mad at someone for stepping on his shoe or throwing a rock when you’re surrounded by angry, undead, blue-eyed, white zombies.
You can’t take some people anywhere.
Get in the Car, Nigga!
There’s always one guy who doesn’t know that the fight is over. Everyone is ready to go, someone has called the cops, but there’s always one homie with his shirt off screaming, “Now who else wanna fuck with Hollywood Court?”
I know we often talk about Daenerys and her privilege dragons, but if our Jon Snow wasn’t lollygagging in the parking lot, one of the dragons wouldn’t have taken a stray bullet to the chest and might still be alive today. Everyone saw the Night King go in the trunk and pull out the gun. They were all yelling for Jon to get in the car, but you know those motherfuckers from the North—they can’t let shit go. Sometimes you just have to leave a friend behind.
Shoutout to Daenerys for being the designated driver. Shoutout to Thoros of Myr (rest in power to a true prayer warrior). Shoutout to dragons disappeared and ones who died in drive-bys. Shoutout to our drunk Uncle Benjen for giving Jon a ride home. Shoutout to the fighters. Shoutout to the fight. Shoutout to the enemy. Shoutout to Beric Dondarrion, who told us: “The enemy always wins. And we still need to fight him. That’s all I know.”
Me, too, Beric.
That’s all I know.