Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Winter Is Here

After having spent a long, and I mean long, time writing a review of "The Winds Of Winter"--the final episode of this season's Game Of Thrones--I pushed the wrong button and deleted it all. (Actually, I pushed two wrong buttons, but both were in different places from what I'm used to since I just installed a new keyboard.)  So rather than a lengthy recap, let me simply give a few impressions.

A fine ending to what was often a shaky season--in fact, the last two seasons have been weaker than usual because of certain plotlines: dependable Arya was stuck in Braavos, dynamic Dany was stuck in Meereen, and Dorne was, well, Dorne.

"The Winds Of Winter" might have had the biggest body count of name characters ever--off the top of my head, Lancel, Pycelle, Tommen, Margaery (ouch), Mace, Loras, High Sparrow, Walder Frey (and a couple of other Freys baked into the pie) and Lyanna Stark (though she's been gone a long time).

Also, you'd figure the main story of the hour would be the trials in King's Landing, but they took care of that whole thing right off the bat, which was good, because then you had to wonder what would happen next.

Other thoughts--

--after all the talk of Dany being the first woman in charge, Cersei beat her to it

--poor Daario, groomed for the big leagues only to be stuck in the minors

--the Imp was already the Queen's Hand, but Dany did the Wizard of Oz trick, giving him a trinket to make it official

--first burning a princess to win a battle and now serving some kids to their father--the show is very Greek

--Davos says he'll kill Mel if she returns, but he's tried to kill her before and failed, and anyway, didn't he just hear Jon say she can't come back, which means it'd be Snow's duty to exectute her?

--Lady Mormont has gone from unknown to audience favorite in record time

--Littlefinger tells Sansa he wants to sit on the Iron Throne with her at his side, but no matter how bad her previous betrothals were, I think the easy part of that equation may be getting the throne

--there was a new musical score for all the King's Landing stuff and I didn't like it at all

--Benjen said the dead can't cross the Wall, so why is everyone worried about their army?

--we finally get the Snow origin (essentially), but it's hard to believe anyone was surprised

--how can Unella be Gregor's sex slave if he's a zombie?

--Pycelle was always a survivor, so it was sad to see him go

--last week I noted I don't like giants, but I like the urchins doing Qyburn's bidding even less

--so the secret mission of Varys was to line up support in Dorne (and get the Tyrell's thrown in as a bonus?), but how did he get back to Meereen so fast to be on Dany's warship when that should have been Grey Worm where he was standing?

Anyway, season six is over.  It takes so long to get here, then it's over so fast. So where do we stand after they cleared the table and reset it?

Cersei is now in charge of Westeros, but how many troops does she have?  She's got the Kingsguard, which is for protecting the castle, and the Lannister army, which isn't as tough as it once was, not to mention general Jaime seems to be having second thoughts.  Meanwhile the Frey's have been wiped out at the top.

Against her, you've got the fast-approaching Dany with a bunch of ships, the Unsullied, the Dothraki horde, whoever is following Theon and Yara and three dragons. (I think she's leaving the Second Sons behind.) You've also got her potential alliance with the Martells and the Tyrells (who oppose the Lannisters in any case).  And the Starks, now united with the other Northern families (and probably the Knights of the Vale) sure don't like the Lannisters.  There's not enough wildfire in the world to stop all that opposition.

Of course, none of it matters if the Army of the Dead start marching.

There are a number of free agents out there.  Not sure where the Hound is or what he wants.  Brienne is still on the move, though presumably returning to Winterfell. Mel, who has gone from dangerous fanatic to sympathetic wanderer, has to go south--maybe she'll find her old friends at the Brotherhood Without Banners (and Gendry and Hot Pie). Arya should return to Winterfell, or does she prefer to be faceless and knock off people as she sees fit?  Will Jaqen be after her to make her stop using those masks?  Then there's Jorah, seeking a cure.  Euron is seeking his niece and nephew, but does anyone care?  And just what will Samwell be doing at the Citadel, aside from catching up on back copies if Maester's Monthly?

We're in the home stretch.  We'll know how it works out soon enough.  Or not soon enough, but eventually, and that'll have to do.


Blogger New England Guy said...

All my comments have been addressed though I like the current theory out there that Varys is really a merling (a bald male mermaid)and he can swim very fast across the Narrow Sea.

I fear Littlefinger will sell out living to the dead as he cuts a deal with the Night King. Although I do like that we do not quite know what those glances between Sansa and Littlefinger at the end meant as Jon was proclaimed King in the North. I've seen completely different interpretations- everything from "See I am united to my brother" to "Hey Pete, We're on."

Waterboarding with Pinot Noir is a neat new torture. I guess it feels good. (I believe the Mountain will blind Unella since Cersei said her face would be the last thing the Septa saw)

4:08 AM, June 28, 2016  
Blogger New England Guy said...

Hmm. How do Beric Dondarrion, the Mountain and Jon Snow function south of the wall then> Jon was actually on the Wall when he came back (wasn't he?). Maybe the Lord of Light's juju is more potent than the White Walker/Children of the Forest magic

6:00 AM, June 28, 2016  
Blogger LAGuy said...

The dead just can't cross the Wall. You can always be revived south of the Wall. And was the Mountain ever dead?

9:04 AM, June 28, 2016  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sansa is unhappy that she's not getting credit. So her attitude is fine, let Jon run Winterfell, I'll be ruling in King's Landing, even if I have to ally myself with Littlefinger.

6:54 PM, June 28, 2016  
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3:54 AM, July 08, 2016  

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