This longbearded Northern soldier has been through a lot - he was part of Stannis' army that lost to the Boltons, he survived the Battle of the Bastards, and now we have official confirmation that he's still hanging around Winterfell:
Luckily, this is one of the rare times we've seen this soldier when his life wasn't in imminent danger of being slaughtered by Bolton forces. All he has to worry about is the creepy Stark kid who keeps talking about how nice the weather was the night his sister was raped by a psychotic masochist.
For some additional information for why this one guy keeps showing up (per redditor zapolight): the guy is apparently a Belfast local who works as a Game of Thrones tour guide in the area (where GoT shoots regularly) and is a super-fan of the show, and has helped get him the occasional extra appearance on the show itself.
After years and years of fan theories and the show gently teasing us with possibilities, Game of Thrones threw up its hands and revealed Jon's true parentage - not the bastard of Ned Stark, but rather the trueborn son of secretly-wed couple Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen (and probably actually named "Aegon"). And since that reveal late last season, the show hasn't been shy about reminding us that YES - R + L = J.
...including their taste (or distaste, rather) for the thing they're both best at: killing people. Rhaegar was a living legend, shockingly bested by an enraged Robert Baratheon at the Battle of the Trident, and we've all seen Jon's talents at killing his foes. The guy is SO good at killing that he LITERALLY KILLED THE PEOPLE WHO KILLED HIM. That's a good killer.
Much of the drama of Game of Thrones comes from lineage - the actions of the previous generation and their effects on their children. Cersei and Jaime's incestuous relationship kicked off the War of the Five Kings, Eddard Stark's apparent fathering of a bastard affected his reputation for years, and the insanity of the Mad King escalated Robert's Rebellion and sent Daenerys on a trip to Essos. But lately, the representatives of Ice and Fire have been talking a lot about not holding the children accountable for the misdeeds of their fathers.
Jon Snow's insistence that the traitorous houses of the North should not be punished now that they were held by children of the actual traitors showed him a merciful and just king (particularly in comparison with Joffrey, who continuously shamed Sansa for being a "traitor's daughter") - and Daenerys made a big deal about not being held accountable for the cruelty and madness that consumed her father.
Man, someone should write a song about these two. No clue what you'd call it though.
Sidenote: someone ELSE made a pretty clear reference to the idea - Tyrion Lannister....A SECRET TARGARYEN AS WELL? My mind is telling me no, but my fan theory is telling me yes.
We were so concerned with the long-awaited meeting of Jon Snow and Daenerys Stormborn this episode, we forgot about the TRUE character pairing we should have been demanding for years: Lady Olenna Tyrell and Sandor Clegane. The two are both sharp-tongued, suffer-no-fools types who have seen their fair share of tragedy and are not ones to mince words.
And they both know people who go around naming their weapons are, uh, a very naughty word.
A lot of people suddenly took notice of Cersei's handmaiden for the first time with the third episode of Season 7 - after all, her suddenly appearing at Cersei's door, mimicking her pixie cut and tight black high-necked militaristic-dress was pretty hard to miss (also hard to miss: her casual dismissal of Cersei twincestin' it up). But the more impressive thing about Bernadette (the handmaiden, in case you'd forgotten) is how long she's actually been on the show - SHE'S BEEN THERE FOR THE PAST 5 YEARS AND NO ONE NOTICED.
Sara Dylan has portrayed Bernadette ever since Season 2's "A Man Without Honor" - and even in her brief appearances since has created an interesting character. This is someone completely devouted to Cersei, to the degree that she stood by her throughout all of Cersei's trials and tribulations and even adopted her new signature look out of admiration.
Goddamn this show is good.