Watchers on the Wall Awards: Best Battle & Best Fight of Season 7

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Nothing like a spot of violence on Sunday afternoon, right? It’s time to celebrate the best of Game of Thrones‘ many action moments! Season 7 may have been shorter than usual but provided even more battles, with twice the firepower and body count. That’s why it’s no easy feat deciding what was the best of the best this year, but this is one task we enjoy.

Our action categories are split into two distinct sections, to keep things tidy- one for smaller-scale fights called Best Fight, and one for the big battles and huge setpieces, called Best Battle! That’s fairer, and then we get to give out two awards instead of one, which is fun, right? Alright, enough with the talking- let’s get to our categories! Check out our finalists, watch the scenes, and vote in the two polls at the bottom of the post.

The top five in each category are:

Best Fight:

Theon stands up to Harrag of the Ironborn

Brienne and Arya have a sparring match in Winterfell

Bronn takes on a Dothraki warrior in the battle

Euron battles Obara and Nymeria to the death

Surrounded on the tiny island, Jon and company fight off the wights

Best Battle:

The Sea Battle, “Stormborn”

The Loot Train Battle, “The Spoils of War”

The Taking of Casterly Rock and Highgarden, “The Queen’s Justice”

The Frozen Lake Battle, “Beyond the Wall”

The Wall comes down, “The Dragon and the Wolf”

The complete results from round 1 voting in Best Fight can be viewed here! (There was no preliminary voting for Best Battle, as there were only five nominees.)


Final round rules: To choose the winners, cast your vote in each category in the polls below- make sure you vote in both! In the finals, unlike the preliminaries, fans have one vote to cast in each category. At the end of 72 hours (Wednesday 12/13/17 at 1PM ET), the fight/battle in each category with the most votes will be the winner! The results of the polls will be revealed during the live Watchers on the Wall Awards ceremony, specific date to be announced in the near future!


Best Fight:

Best Battle:

60 responses

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    1. I think I’m going to go with the Sea Battle, actually. Petra talked about this in the Glass Candles video well- I think it did a great job of having an emotional through-line that the Frozen Lake battle lacked for me.

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    2. Ok so the sea battle was beautiful but it had Euron in it so it can’t win. Euron is destroying the show. Straight cheese.

      I went with the wight/Jon fight and the loot train battle. The loot train battle was beautiful to watch. It didn’t have much emotion for me but just filmed incredibly. It was gorgeous.

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    3. Loot train, I still remember gasping for air when I though Jaime was biting the dust. (Like his man literary) . Second for me will be the sea battle (just as sue described), and third battle beyond the wall, I think it still needs to have much admiration if you look how much afford the crew put in that battle.

      As for the fights I went with the frozen lake fight, not because it was the most exciting battle of the season, but because of the effort they put in to make the lake as realistic as possible. And because it has something truly special in it, the hound.

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    4. Arya/Brienne + Loot Train Battle. Very easy.

      But I did have feels during both Theon’s fight and the Sea Battle – as a massive Ironborn-fan. It’s just that thkse other two fights were simply better.

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    5. Best fight – Surrounded on the tiny island, Jon and co. fight off the wights

      Arya and Brienne coming a close second.

      Best battle – The Loot Train Battle, “The Spoils of War”

      That was ‘epic’ and the first time we see the Dothraki (with the help of Dany and Drogon) in action in Westeros… Real kick-ass stuff 😛

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    6. Best Fight – Brienne and Arya have a sparring match in Winterfell

      Once all eight seasons have aired, I am sure this will go down as one of the iconic fight scenes of GoT. It was beautifully choreographed, executed and filmed. Gwendoline and Maisie were both fantastic in this scene, and it was one of my favorites of the season. In spite of the patriarchal nature of this society, the best fight scene of season seven featured two strong women. Fantastic!

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    7. Brienne/Arya-Best Fight

      Loot Train – Best Battle. Yes, the effects were stunning but I remember being on the edge of my seat the entire time because as much as I was rooting for Dany to finally kick some ass, I didn’t want Jaime or Bronn to die, either. It was a conundrum in the best possible way..

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    8. It’s funny to me that many seem to prefer Arya vs. Brienne because I thought Arya’s and Brienne’s fight looked extremely fake/staged, so that’s a big no go for me.

      Personally, I voted for Theon vs. Harrag as best fight scene. Not only did it look brutal and real but it was also a great scene. Very emotional with very good acting.

      Best battle would be loot train or naval battle. Haven’t quite decided yet which one.

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    9. Alba Stark:
      Best Fight – Brienne and Arya have a sparring match in Winterfell

      Once all eight seasons have aired, I am sure this will go down as one of the iconic fight scenes of GoT.It was beautifully choreographed, executed and filmed.Gwendoline and Maisie were both fantastic in this scene, and it was one of my favorites of the season.In spite of the patriarchal nature of this society, the best fight scene of season seven featured two strong women.Fantastic!

      I couldn’t have said it better. So I won’t try. (Except to say that by themselves, Arya’s dagger twirl before the match and dagger flip to end it, sealed the deal for me.)

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    10. Loot train battle, the Dothraki, the first shot of Drogon flying over the Dothraki on an open field, simply stunning. The fight sequences actually made sense too.

      For best fight, Theon. Brilliantly acted. Plus I love gritty, scrappy, dirty fights. The fight represented a transformation from passive/pleading Reek, to a person who had the courage to fight for honour. This is exciting. We are seeing a new Theon. Not ungrateful season 1 and 2 Theon. Not power hungry Theon. Not Reek. But a Theon who may finally be comfortable in his own skin.

      Close second is the arya/brienne fight, but for me that fight represented “look at my skills”, which isn’t as meaningful as Theon’s fight.

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    11. That Theon scene was one of the worst the show has ever done. Juvenile and seemed like it was pulled from a lesser program.

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    12. the fight was easy for me- Arya and Brienne The battle not so much – these 5 nominated all deserved awards. But the surprise element of the Sea Battle, along with the non stop action and lead up to that final march to kings landing gets my vote. HM is the Field of Fire.
      .

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    13. Alba Stark,

      Honestly.. I voted for this one as well, but you’re overselling it. First off, this show is known for strong female characters overcoming hardships and even being proficient as leaders and in battle (Dany, Brienne, Arya, Yara, Lyanna – both of ’em). So you’re overselling the feminist angle for a show that already does that justice almost by default.

      Secondly, while it was a great fight with great choreography, it doesn’t come close to iconic battles such as Mountain vs. Viper, ToJ or Brienne vs. The Hound. Mostly because those battles simply meant more storywise, while this Brienne vs. Arya-trainingsmatch serves only as an exposition of Arya’s skill to Sansa, Brienne and Littlefinger. Storywise, it tells Brienne that Arya isn’t a helpless girl she thought she was and it totally puts the situation in Winterfell on edge. It freaks Sansa out that Arya became this proficient and it triggers plotting-mode in Littlefingers mind. This fight essentially kicks of the s7 Winterfell-arc. Sadly, that arc pales to implications of Oberyn’s death (Tyrion fleeing Westeros, killing Tywin (and Shae), leading to him eventually meeting Dany, Dorne going openly against the Lannisters, Jaime getting guilted for Tywin’s death by Cersei, etc).

      So not saying it was bad, but “iconic” is a bit overselling it.. None of the fights were truly iconic in s7 to be honest. Definitely the best of s7 though.

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    14. Well, Fielf of Fire is a no brainer. (With al due respect to the Frozen Lake battle, Field of Fire wasn’t quite expected by me and combined both CGI and the horror of dozens/hundreds/maybe a few thousand soldiers dying.)

      Fight category has imo two very solid contenders, Arya & Brienne sparring and the dispatching of (most of) the Sand Snakes by Euron. (Sand Snakes deserve some recognition for this season after all the flak they more or less rightfully got for previous seasons.)

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    15. Don’t get why Arya/Brienne gets all the votes. It was okay, but kinda silly. Like Brienne actually tries to kill Arya, just because she is suprised that she is so good? If you are not trying to kill people you really shouldn’t hack at their heads with full force and an actual sword…

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    16. Stoneheart:
      Don’t get why Arya/Brienne gets all the votes. It was okay, but kinda silly. Like Brienne actually tries to kill Arya, just because she is suprised that she is so good? If you are not trying to kill people you really shouldn’t hack at their heads with full force and an actual sword…

      Brienne was using a sparring sword.

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    17. Field of Fire was probably the best battle in the whole series, just from a production and CGI standpoint. But I just want to reiterate that the battle overall did nothing for me on an emotional level because the whole season was flat and nothing going on between the humans was that interesting.

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    18. Arya/Brienne was EPIC. Maybe not the MOST EPIC but to see Arya’s skills on display was awesome. It’ll probably make the top 10 but (no order) Mountain/Viper, ToJ, Jon vs Styr, WW @ Hardhome, & Karl Tanner, Hound vs Brienne, Hound & Arya vs Polliver & crew, Jorah in the Dragon pit, Barristan & Grey Worm vs Harpys… It wasn’t as good as those but it was still EPIC because we finally got to see Arya kick ass & now we know how/why the Waif took that L in the dark…

      Field of Fire was also EPIC. Frozen Lake was a close 2nd. I’d probably still take Hardhome & BoB over both just for pure battle EPICNESS. Loot train was more about Drogon than the battle. Though the Dothraki had some cool scenes. Castle Black probably right behind Field of Fire. Blackwater bringing up the rear. But still good.

      Any major fights or battles I’m leaving out?

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    19. Erica: Brienne was using a sparring sword.

      What’s the difference? Perhaps it doesn’t have a sharpened edge, but still has a ‘pointy end’ which can do a lot of damage!

      I got the impression that Brienne was getting annoyed with Arya and losing her cool in what was supposed just to be a sparring match. She took a swing at her after she dropped Needle and if it wasn’t for Arya’s fancy move with the dagger, Arya could have got injured or worse.

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    20. Best Fight: Bronn takes on a Dothraki warrior in the battle

      Brienne vs. Arya was well-choreographed but I never considered voting for it. It had no real stakes to it, being a training duel, but the biggest reason is that it honestly felt a bit too fanservicey and cheesy for my liking. The camera’s emphasis on Arya and her ninja-like speed made it come across as a needless “Look how badass Arya is!” scene rather than an actual test of skill, as if that wasn’t already well established by this point. I can understand why other people loved it, but it just felt way too transparent and on the nose to me.

      Best Battle: Field of Fire II (“The Spoils of War”)

      I’m never, ever calling it “The Loot Train Battle”, no matter how much they push it in the official material. LOL

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    21. JaimenotJamie:
      That Theon scene was one of the worst the show has ever done.Juvenile and seemed like it was pulled from a lesser program.

      Fully agree. It’s literally Theon getting beat to a pulp until OH NOES HE HIT THE VOID CROTCH (why is he shocked? Even if realizing a man is cockless while kneeing him in the middle of a fight would somehow matter, they knew Theon was a eunuch) which seems made of iron, leaving the attacker stunned and giving Turncloak time for a cheesy smile before counter attacking.

      Anyway, about the other fight scenes and my choice: Bronn’s was good but it was mostly an escape. Euron’s had that great moment when he stabs and lifts Obara while putting that maniacal face, yet I couldn’t stop thinking about how the women were betrayed by their foolish comic-book-like weapon choices. And the fight at the lake’s only memorable moment for me was when Tormund is crying for help, being pulled towards the water; the rest was just more of the same wight-slashing and slow-mo-imminent-doom trick.
      Which leaves the winner, Arya vs. Brienne. While I wasn’t fully OK with it (not my area of expertise, but it seemed weird Arya would be able parry those longsword swings with a “needle” without it flying from her hands or breaking at first contact; that and Brienne’s kind of overreaction), it was really badass, with a great choreography that was perfectly executed by the actors/stunt doubles.

      And… on the battle front it’s easily Field of Fire > all

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    22. I really wanted to choose Brienne/Arya but there was no urgency of life and death so ultimately I chose the Island.

      The loot train was easy!

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    23. Loot train (no contest there) and Theon (finally, something goes Theon’s way!) followed closely by the mutual admiration society of Arya and Brienne.

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    24. Loot Train – was the best battle for me, easily without question

      Theon for me was more of the same, we have seen this for 3 seasons, they really don’t know what else to do with him – and him realizing that for once not have the family jewels was a benefit and that gives him the advantage in the fight … lame. Theon’s entire season after he jumped off the ship was lackluster for me… that jump was great and implied so much promise for how he would resolve it but, I don’t know, the way they did it afterwards just seemed to lack creativity and any deeper thought… all reduced to a single fight for power and again it makes the Ironborn men look really dumb and reduce them to mindless followers…

      Bronn – I consider part of Loot Train, and it really isn’t a fight – but more flight then ambush… I WISH they had to actually fight each other!

      Euron – again it is one of the main parts of the Sea Battle, and it was so dark and over so quickly that I actually felt that they deserved better (and did Euron have to be everyone’s opponent?), I actually missed that it was Obara on the first viewing 🙁 and to be taken out by their own weapons just added the exclamation mark on how silly and weak the SS were depicted on the show, and I KNOW these actresses could have handled much better fight scenes too…

      Tiny Island – this was was good for what it was, but the entire premise was so contrived that it seem too much like the plot device it was.

      So, I too ended up selecting with Arya/Brienne… it was a surprise and captured the moment well (it isn’t prefect – I do wish the setting was different) plus, much like they did all season, it was a call back to the fun and light Syrio/Arya sparring scenes in season 1 and they remain some of my favorites, not every fight needs life/death stakes to be important or memorable. It was nice to see Arya’s growth and imply that her training will continue (off screen) with a real master in Brienne.

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    25. Best Battle: Field of Fire II (“The Spoils of War”)

      I’m never, ever calling it “The Loot Train Battle”, no matter how much they push it in the official material. LOL

      I always wondered why they called it the loot train battle. Maybe they decided that season 8 will have a battle that they will call field of fire.

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    26. Luzbeliten,

      “…And the fight at the lake’s only memorable moment for me was when Tormund is crying for help, being pulled towards the water…”
      ………………….

      …. and is saved by Sandor.

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    27. LatrineDiggerBrian:
      Field of Fire was probably the best battle in the whole series, just from a production and CGI standpoint. But I just want to reiterate that the battle overall did nothing for me on an emotional level because the whole season was flat and nothing going on between the humans was that interesting.

      Always refreshing to read your sullen perspectives. Every silver lining has to come with a dark cloud, doesn’t it?

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    28. Our action categories are split into two distinct sections, to keep things tidy- one for smaller-scale fights called Best Fight, and one for the big battles and huge setpieces, called Best Battle!

      GoT taught you well. 😀 Battles and Armor At least you got the hang of it, Hot Pie sure didn’t. 😉
      exhibit A
      exhibit B

      Among the two sections were three overlaps, so I didn’t consider those smaller-scale scenes as fights rather than part of the big setpieces.

      “Euron battles Obara and Nymeria to the death” was part of “The Sea Battle”
      “Bronn takes on a Dothraki warrior” was part of “The Loot Train Battle”
      “Jon and co. fight off the wights” was part of “The Frozen Lake Battle”

      And I don’t see the “Frozen Lake Battle” as a battle, it’s more a skirmish really. “The Wall falls” wasn’t a battle for me either. And “The Taking of Casterly Rock and Highgarden” didn’t have enough meat on its bones, so to speak.

      I went with Arya and Brienne, because I love me a good sword fight and that came closest. And the Loot Train Battle was on par with Battle of the Bastards for me.

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    29. Finally an easy one – at least for me.

      Arya vs Brienne was a great scene, but not a real fight. Great set up for whatever big fight(s) Arya’s going to have next season and there’s a good chance I’ll be voting for her then, but a sparring match just isn’t good enough to win this round.

      Bronn vs the Dothraki was a very worthy contender. But ultimately this scene was a bit unrealistic for my tastes (with all the sword throwing over 50 feet and whatnot), which isn’t a big deal but it just doesn’t get my vote here.

      Euron vs everyone was fun as well (great entrance by Euron here!) and I kind of rooted for him in that scene a bit at least as far as the Sand Snakes were concerned (no need for them in the final season). But the directing and editing wasn’t up to snuff, way too many hectic close cuts. Maybe some folks like that, but that’s not for me. I wanna see the damn fight, don’t cut away and back all the goddamn time!

      The wight fight was pretty great, but I prefer the smaller, more intimate fights, so despite the great execution my vote goes to:

      Theon vs the Ironborn captain. That was just bloody fantastic and reminds instantly of the equally great Brienne vs the Hound fight. Just as dirty if not more and a great character building moment for Theon of top of it. Plus the look on the captain’s face when he realized how bad his idea to kick him in the groin was is priceless. Easy winner for me.

      Second category:
      Well, let’s keep this one short. It’s the Field of Fire 2.0 hands down. All the other scenes were done very well and are all worthy contenders, but none were anything close to level of the loot train battle which is easily the best battle scene in the history of television (and just barely loses out so some of the biggest blockbuster movies). This was the big climax where all those years of buildup between the Lannisters and Targaryens lead to and damn it did not disappoint.

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    30. hard choice when it comes to the best battle. there are two surprise attacks which do not give their participants too much chance to run away from it. a dragon is something you do not run away from easily except you know how to fly, and running on water… ehm. shitty situation for the attacked in both battles.

      the loot train battle was impressive, especially the climax with a showdown jamie vs dany and drogon. it also did a lot for the story. it prepared the stage for dany’s infamous “bend the knee or die”, as well for samwell becoming the new head of house tarly. and it even took time for some fine painting of characters, like: bronn leaving the lost money and continuing to do his job. the comanche… excuse me: dothraki attack was impressive too.

      still, i prefer the sea battle because it introduced something we were waiting to see in full action: “silence”. and holy shit, that “silence” was pretty loud, wasn’t it? hacking this huge claw into the victim ship and presenting an armed, rabid lunatic to his hosts: bad view for the attacked, but one of the best on the series for me.

      this lunatic (let’s name him “euron”) butchers his way through some dozen extras – and a few supporting actresses. the way he decorates the defeated ship with the corpses of the two sand snakes shows that this guy’s fun in killing might even be bigger than his fun in having sex with a queen.

      this decoration is seen by reek right after he decides to go for a swim. no wait… that guy’s name is theon, or at least he tries to be theon again most of the time. until rabid uncle euron takes his sister captive. damn, what a nice picking up of a character’s storyline in an epic battle!

      the result of the battle prepares a cliffhanger, the complete fall of a mighty house of the south and one of the best scenes ever on GoT.

      euron returns to kings landing with the last two living members of house martell (and with his two good hands). they will feature in that unbelievable dungeon scene that will hopefully make indira varna get the WotW-trophy she deserves so damn much since she appeared.

      the cliffhanger is yarra’s fate. reek’s fate too, for a while. we do not know shit about what has become of yarra, and this fact makes me favor the battle at the sea THE battle of the season…

      … because it also leads consequently to my pick for the fight of the season. of course it is theon’s rebirth by being hit in the mid-section again! a brutal fight on GoT won by an already beaten up guy having kicked his balls up his nose (if he just had balls left to be kicked there) is an entertaining fact, but nothing we haven’t seen before.

      i think of that character rollercoaster theon had to ride. there was always some hybris of his, corrected to his disadvantage by circumstances like ramsay, and then a huge effort of him to get back to at least half of what he has been before the recent degrading.

      he lost his toy some 200 seconds after he thought it might get two beauties to save him the very enjoyable way. then, there was a guy making “booo-booo-booo-boo” on a horn and he was made reek.

      for a while he escaped his reekness by saving sansa, speaking up at the king’s moot, fighting bravely in euron’s naval attack – but then euron just like shoved that little fragile theon II overboard.

      and now he brawls his way back to being theon another time in a pretty average “ugh” and “argh” brawl. dumb (yessa) ironborn tries to castrate him one more time, and then there is THIS! SMILE! on THEON’S face! because there was no more hight given to him to fall from. he could just rise from the level he was on, and he did that.

      because what’s castrated will never scream “ouch my balls” but will hit back harder.

      fight of the season? fight of the series!!

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    31. Best Fight: Brienne and Arya have a sparring match in Winterfell

      Close Second: Surrounded on the tiny island, Jon and company fight off the wights

      Best Battle: The Loot Train Battle/The Field of Fire, “The Spoils of War”

      Close Second: The Frozen Lake Battle, “Beyond the Wall”

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    32. Actually, the redundancy of the two categories is pretty annoying:

      * Bronn v Dothraki fight is a part of the Loot Train Battle
      * Euron v Sand Snakes fight is a part of the Sea Battle
      * Hound saves Tormund (not even a “fight”) is a part of the Frozen Lake Battle

      The only non-overlapping fights are Theon v Harrag and Brienne v Arya; the only stand-alone battles are Casterly Rock and The Fall of the Wall. So a person could very easily vote for the same sequence in both categories, three ways!

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    33. Like many others this was super-easy for me:

      Arya vs Brienne

      and

      Field of Fire 2.0 (Loot Train whatever nonsense)

      Hands down. As far as I’m concerned, there are no other options.

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    34. LatrineDiggerBrian,

      All in good fun!😋
      But seriously, your contrary views are often refreshing. If everybody comes on here to sing “everything is awesome” all the time, there’d be no engaging discussions.
      And to your credit, when you support your criticisms with examples, it spurs interesting exchanges.

      I think there’s a Japanese saying, roughly translated as “the protruding nail gets hammered.” For me, GoT is consistently excellent, with scattered exceptions. Like a sore thumb – or protruding nail – those exceptions stand out and attract the most attention.

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    35. Ten Bears,

      ty. As long as you know I’m not doing it on purpose and that I did indeed love the show S1-S5. It’s why the shows downfall has been so painful for me. But oh well, such is life.

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    36. Ten Bears,

      I personally disagree, TB. His views are not refreshing, at least not to me. He just comes here to complain about the same talking points over and over again. It’s not constructive or useful criticism.

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    37. Arya vs Brienne and loot train. Loot train is for obvious reasons. I loved Arya and Brienne not just because of how good it was, but also because of what it means for the characters. Two characters who have really struggled fitting in, finding and accepting each other. Furthermore it was really light hearted and cheerful. Arya and Brienne needed a moment where they could just enjoy themselves and take pleasure in their skills without it being about survival or vengeance. Both ended that fight beaming.

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    38. arya and brienne sparring session was beautiful

      but for me it has to be euron on his massive ship … possibly one the best scenes of the entire season 7.

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