7 Subtle Game of Thrones Callbacks You Might Have Missed in the Latest Episode


Warning: This post contains spoilers about “The Spoils of War,” the fourth episode in Game of Thrones’s seventh season. If you’re not caught up, stop reading now.

Game of Thrones is an immaculately detailed television series, but the latest episode, “The Spoils of War,” really outdid itself with its subtle callbacks to earlier episodes. Here are seven references to past episodes you might have missed while yelling at your screen during the dragon-filled battle of the loot train.


Oh, that’s right: In a collection of mutilated corpses half-buried in snow in the show’s first-ever scene. The cave drawings Jon Snow shows Daenerys were etched by the Children of the Forest and culminate in a picture of humans and humanoid forest creatures uniting to fight the White Walkers. But they were also a reminder that the Children of the Forest created the White Walkers in the first place as a weapon to unleash on the First Men—and apparently, they imparted their mystical love of swirls on their monstrous offspring.


Early on in “The Spoils of War,” Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish goes to work trying to weasel his way into Bran Stark’s confidence. But Bran, who is now the all-seeing Three-Eyed Raven, sees right through Littlefinger’s schemes. He cuts him off with four short words that rattle Baelish: “Chaos is a ladder.” What was it about that seemingly innocuous phrase that took Littlefinger aback? They reference a speech Littlefinger gave to Varys in season three, while laying out his plans to sow chaos throughout Westeros and use it to amass power (and presumably pursue his creepy obsession with Stark women).


While Cersei and Tycho Nestoris were chatting last night, the iron banker namedropped the Golden Company, a legendary mercenary army only ever mentioned twice before on the show. In Season 4, Davos suggests to Stannis that they hire 10,000 Golden Company soldiers to bolster their forces, but Stannis balks at the idea of using sellswords to take the Iron Throne. Later in the season, Jorah Mormont reveals that he spent some time with the Golden Company before pledging himself to Daenerys’s brother, Viserys. In the books they are one of the largest and most skilled mercenary bands in the Free Cities.


Last night’s big cliffhanger surrounded the fate of Jaime Lannister, last seen sinking to the bottom of a river wearing heavy plate armor. Things don’t look great for him, until you remember a similar cliffhanger in season 5, when Tyrion was left sinking through the water with his hands tied after Jorah fended off an attacker infected with greyscale. Things turned out ok for Tyrion and it’s likely that they probably will for Jaime, too.


In season 5, when Mance Rayder refused to bend the knee to Stannis Baratheon to avoid being burned at the stake, Jon Snow tried to reason with him. Mance said his people would never accept a ruler who knelt to a southern king—to which Jon replied, “Isn’t their survival more important than your pride?” Last night, Jon and Daenerys had an almost identical exchange, with Jon arguing that his people can’t accept a southern queen and Daenerys throwing his line back in his face.


Last night wasn’t the first time a pair of bumbling guards refused to let Arya through a gate. In the first season, when the Starks were in King’s Landing and Ned’s head was still attached to his body, Arya wandered out of the Red Keep chasing cats. When she came back, a pair of skeptical guards refused to let her pass. She was a little sassier in the first season, but gave the same reply she used last night when the Winterfell guards asked what she was doing there: “I live here.”


You can be forgiven for not remembering this obscure running joke stretching back to Season 2. One of Stannis Baratheon’s pet peeves was when people incorrectly used the word “less” instead of “fewer.” In the second season, Ser Davos says he didn’t mind that Stannis had chopped off most of his hand. “It’s four less fingernails to clean,” he quipped. “Fewer,” Stannis retorted. Then in Season 5, in a Night’s Watch meeting about letting the Wildlings south of the wall, one man says they should let them die because it would be “less enemies for us.” Stannis mutters under his breath, “Fewer.” Davos has apparently learned his lesson, and last night corrected Jon for asking how many fighting men he has in the North—“10,000? Less?”

For the record, when you’re talking about a quantity you can count—like the number of missing fingernails, Northern enemies, or men ready to square off against the Night King—the word you want is “fewer.” In every other situation, you should say “less.”

Reviews.org Wants to Pay You $1000 to Watch 30 Disney Movies

Razvan/iStock via Getty Images
Razvan/iStock via Getty Images

Fairy tales do come true. CBR reports that Reviews.org is currently hiring five people to watch 30 Disney movies (or 30 TV show episodes) for 30 days on the new Disney+ platform. In addition to $1000 apiece, each of the chosen Disney fanatics will receive a free year-long subscription to Disney+ and some Disney-themed movie-watching swag that includes a blanket, cups, and a popcorn popper.

The films include oldies but goodies, like Fantasia, Bambi, and A Goofy Movie, as well as Star Wars Episodes 1-7 and even the highly-anticipated series The Mandalorian. Needless to say, there are plenty of options for 30 days of feel-good entertainment.

In terms of qualifications: applicants must be over the age of 18, a U.S. resident, have the ability to make a video reviewing the films, as well as a semi-strong social media presence. On the more fantastical side, they are looking for applicants who “really, really lov[e] Disney” and joke that the perfect candidate, “Must be as swift as a coursing river, with all the force of a great typhoon.” You can check out the details in the video below.

Want to put yourself in the running? Be sure to submit your application by Thursday, November 7 at 11:59 p.m. at the link here. And keep an eye out for Disney+, which will be available November 12.

A Handy Map of All the Royal Residences in the UK

Frogmore House, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's primary estate on the grounds of Windsor Castle.
Frogmore House, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's primary estate on the grounds of Windsor Castle.

Somewhere along the way, you probably learned that Buckingham Palace is home to the ruler of the United Kingdom and many unflinching, fancily clad guards. And, if you watch The Crown or keep a close eye on royal family news, you might recognize the names of other estates like Windsor Castle and Kensington Palace.

But what about Gatcombe Park, Llwynywermod, or any of the other royal residences? To fill in the gaps of your knowledge, UK-based money-lending site QuickQuid created a map and corresponding illustrations of all 20 properties, and compiled the need-to-know details about each place.

quickquid map of royal family residences

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip kept eight estates for themselves, and divvied up the rest among their children and grandchildren, some of whom have purchased their own properties, too. Though Buckingham Palace is still considered the official residence of the Queen, she now splits most of her time between Windsor Castle and other holiday homes like Balmoral Castle in Scotland and Sandringham House, which Prince Philip is responsible for maintaining.

quickquid illustration of royal family residences

Windsor shares its grounds with two other properties: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s home, Frogmore House, and the Royal Lodge, where Prince Andrew (the Queen’s second youngest child) lives.

illustration of frogmore house

Southwest of Windsor is Highgrove House, Prince Charles’s official family home with wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall. They also own Birkhall in Scotland, Clarence House in London, Tamarisk House on the Isles of Scilly, and the aforementioned Llwynywermod in Wales. Much like the Queen herself does, Charles and Camilla basically have a different house for each region they visit.

illustration of highgrove house

In 2011, the Queen gave Anmer Hall—which is on the grounds of Sandringham House—to Prince William and Kate Middleton as a wedding gift, but they’ve recently relocated to Kensington Palace so Prince George could attend school in London.

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip’s only daughter, Anne, resides in Gatcombe Park with her daughter, Zara Tindall. Anne also owns St. James’s Palace in London, where her niece (Princess Beatrice of York) and her mother’s cousin (Princess Alexandra) sometimes live.

Lastly there's Edward, Elizabeth and Philip's youngest son, who lives with his wife in Bagshot Park, which architectural historian Nikolaus Pevsner called “bad, purposeless, [and] ugly.”

illustration of bagshot park

If you’re feeling particularly cramped in your tiny one-bedroom apartment (or even regular-sized house) after reading about the royal family’s overabundance of real estate, take solace in the knowledge that at least you’ll never have to follow their strict fashion rules.