“Game of Thrones” has released the trailer for episode 7 titled “The Broken Man.” Displayed prominently in the video was the combined Frey and Lannister forces besieging the seat of House Tully, Riverrun. With the Blackfish and the remnants of the Tully forces hold the Castle against this overwhelming force?
In “Blood of my Blood,” Walder Frey is outraged with the news that “The Blackfish” Brynden Tully has retaken the castle. Being the newly proclaimed Lord Paramount of the Riverlands, losing the regional capital is a severe blow to the legitimacy of their rule.
With “The Blackfish” retaking the seat of House Tully, other river lords saw this as an opportunity for rebellion. House Mallister and House Blackwood, two of the more powerful houses in the Riverlands, already rose up against the Freys. Desperate, Walder Frey seeks the help of Lannisters and besieges the castle and plans to use Edmure Tully as a bargaining chip.
So can Brynden Tully hold Riverrun against such overwhelming odds? A closer look at the situation and the castle itself reveals that this feat is quite possible. If the Tully forces successfully hold the castle, this will tie down the majority of the Lannister forces making them unable to aid Ramsay Bolton in the north.
According to Walder Frey’s sons, Riverrun is built to last a year-long siege and that despite their large army; they don’t have enough men to retake the castle. Although these are pretty much true, what “Game of Thrones” doesn’t reveal is why.
The castle is a formidable fortress lying on the main tributary of the Red Fork of the River Trident. Its towers can cover the opposite shores of the river making any assault on the castle result in severe casualties. In times of danger, the rivers can be used to flood a channel in the western portion of the castle essentially making it into an island.
Even with the minimal force currently manning its walls, the Tullies can easily repel any attack from the Freys and Lannisters. With a skilled commander such as the Blackfish leading them, the castle can be held long enough for help to arrive.
The only way the Freys can prevent a protracted siege is to use Lord Edmure Tully to force the defenders to yield. Although this might work, “Game of Thrones” season 3 show Brynden Tully to be apathetic to his nephew and might abandon him in order to hold the castle.
It’s not just Riverrun that has the Freys backed up against the wall, the previously mentioned rebellion of the Mallisters and the Blackwoods also pose a threat to their hold on the Riverlands.
The Mallisters are a staunch loyalist of the Tullies and they have hardened veterans as their seat of Seagard is the first line of defense against Iron born raiders. The Blackwoods owe the return of their seat from the Lannisters to Robb Stark and the Tullies.
The three houses can easily topple the Freys from power should they unite the other river lords behind them. The rule of House Frey has already caused discontent in the Riverlands with the smallfolk suffering the most and the new rulers considered by many to be mere upstarts who violated the sacred “guest rights.”
With the upcoming war in the north, holding Riverrun can tip the scales in favor of Jon Snow and Sansa Stark. With potential reinforcements from the river lords and preventing Lannister aid, Ramsay Bolton might rely on strategy than overwhelming odds to achieve victory and by the looks of it, he seems to be lacking in that department. Watch “Game of Thrones” to find out more.