There was one disturbing scene in Season 7 Episode 6 of Game of Thrones tonight when Arya really seemed to be threatening Sansa. During the scene, Arya talked about the “Game of Faces” that she used to play. When did she play that game and who did she play with? And what exactly is the Game of Faces?
We have the details below.
The Game of Faces is a game that helps turn a person into “no one.” When Arya played it the first time in Braavos, she didn’t even realize what she was playing at first. She had to slowly catch on to what was going on and how to become No One.
Here’s a scene below where Arya plays the Game of Faces with the Waif, in Season 5 Episode 6. She has to play again because she failed the first time. The Waif tells Arya a story about her past and then asks if it was the truth or a lie. “Did you believe every word I said?” Later in the scene below, Jaqen appears again and asks Arya, “Who are you?” “Where did you come from?” Every time she answered honestly, Jaqen hit her and said, “Lie.” “A girl lies to me, to the many-faced God, to herself. Does she truly want to be no one?” When Arya said yes, he hit her again.
“I’m not playing this stupid game anymore,” Arya said, to which Jaquen responded, “You never stop playing.”
After she successfully passed Jaqen’s game, she was allowed into the Hall of Faces, where she was given the task of assassinating a dock worker.
The true meaning of the Game of Faces is testing someone to see if they’ve truly relinquished every shred of their identity in order to become “No One.” Arya kept failing because she kept talking about who she was and holding on to her possessions that were related to her “old life.” That’s why the Waif could lie about her identity and if Arya didn’t realize it, she wasn’t ready yet. She still believed that identities were real. Eventually she did pass. Once you’ve truly relinquished who you are, you can lie convincingly well because the lies no longer have meaning to you.
It’s not clear immediately why Arya was playing the game of faces with Sansa, however, because it’s not just about asking questions and discovering when someone’s lying. Sansa’s certainly not on a quest to become No One.
Perhaps it was just Arya’s way of intimidating Sansa and playing the role with Sansa that the Faceless Men played her, which likely left her feeling quite empowered.
But there’s another possibility. Arya may have been simply trying to read Sansa and figure out her tells, so she could know if Sansa was lying or if she could truly trust her sister. The Game of Faces isn’t just about becoming no one. It’s played by pushing someone to the edge. You’re incredibly mean to the person in order to discover the truth and who they’re loyalty is with. This may be why Arya was so rude and mean to Sansa. She ultimately needed to push her to the edge to discover Sansa’s truth and if she is trustworthy.
What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.