Massacre, assassination, and a coronation: what more could you want from a Game of Thrones season finale? Let’s see what the critics had to say about season 6, episode 10, “The Winds of Winter.”
Here at The Wall, Sue (Sullied) breaks down the finale and even offers some season 7 speculations. She applauds the gorgeous Oldtown, Ramin Djawadi’s score, and of course, the Queens that reigned supreme throughout the finale. Oz (Unsullied) basks in the green light of the Sept and the vengeful dish served at The Twins in what he calls “arguably one of the best finales in the show’s history.”
Since this episode contained moments from the book series and the past, some authors are noted as Sullied or Unsullied. Be sure to still exercise caution when reading some reviews for book spoilers.
Caitlin PenzeyMoog, A.V. Club (Sullied) – New to the rounds this week, PenzeyMoog shines a light on the book reader’s viewing experience saying they “got an appropriately shocking set of scenes that must have felt for us what Ned’s beheading and the Red Wedding felt like for non-readers: An “I can’t believe that just happened” moment.”
Alyssa Rosenberg, The Washington Post (Sullied) – Paying for an “uneven season,” Rosenberg says the episode “stuck the landing, assembling all of its chess pieces effectively for two final battles while also delivering some grand spectacle moments of pure delight.”
Sean T. Collins, Rolling Stone – Collins revels in the season finale calling it “explosive and powerful.”
Rob Bricken, io9 – Bricken delights in the finale and the ending it provided for so many characters. “It was absolutely relentless in how much story it gave us, but these conclusions felt earned, just as it did back when it was following George R.R. Martin’s stories to the letter.”
James Hibberd, Entertainment Weekly – Hibberd calls the episode “the bloodiest and most game-changing Game of Thrones finale ever.” EW also has post-finale interviews with Lena Headey (Cersei), Natalie Dormer (Margaery), and Emilia Clarke (Daenerys).
Sarah Hughes, The Guardian (Sullied) – Hughes also praises the episode saying the season ended with “a heart-stopping conclusion heavy in blood, revenge and death in which scores were settled, new alliances formed, old fan theories confirmed and the stage set for what promises to be the mother of all clashes.”
Neil Miller, Film School Rejects (Sullied) – Miller breaks down the reveals of “The Winds of Winter” and says the conclusion of season 6 “finished with several bangs and while it closed many storylines, it also opened up new ones. Providing as much intrigue for the future as it did closure for the present.”
David Crow, Den of Geek – Crow notes the end in sight as he says the finale “feels like the final turning point in the series before we enter the fabled endgame.”
Laura Hudson, Wired – Opening with a highly applicable quote from Tyrion to Dany (“How about the fact that this is really happening?”), Hudson revels in the many satisfying moments from the season 6 finale.
Alan Sepinwall, Hitfix – Sepinwall analyzes the death toll of “The Winds of Winter” and calls the episode a “masterpiece.”
Brandon Norwalk, A.V. Club (Unsullied) – Norwalk applauds the loose ends tied up and calls “The Winds of Winter” the end of the “second act” for Game of Thrones.
Jen Chaney, Vulture – Chaney gives the episode a 5 star rating noting “Winter is no longer merely coming. Winter is here.”
David Malitz, The Washington Post (Unsullied) – Malitz calls the finale “overstuffed” but says the season still picked up with its last two episodes.
Laura Bogart, Salon – Bogart calls the finale “explosive” and reviews how the finale set the great game in motion.
Laura Stone, Hey, Don’t Judge Me (Unsullied) – Stone laments for Margaery but is still floored by Cersei’s wildfire massacre and the many big moments the finale packed.
David Rosenblatt, Squinty Over Analyzes Things (Sullied) – Rosenblatt analyzes the phenomenon Game of Thrones has become and the fan impact on the series.
Michal Schick, Hypable – Schick examines the explosive vengeance and satisfying reveals of “The Winds of Winter.”
Alicia Lutes, Nerdist – Lutes accurately encompasses the fan reaction saying the episode “just had everything” and that she “dug the shit out of this episode, but I also have no chill.”
Same, Alicia, same.
Well there you have it! The final round of satisfied critics as the season 6 finale packed more than a few big moments. Stay tuned for Bex’s video recap round-up later this week and Watchers for the off season! We’ve already begun with casting announcements, and filming is sure to follow.
A special thank you to all our supporters who flock to The Wall week after week to nerd out with us! Be sure to sign off below with your thoughts on the reviews and the season finale.
Until Season 7!