The Night’s Cast Episode 21: “The Long Night” Recap and Reactions

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I don’t know about anyone else, but seeing Daenerys wield a sword (albeit shortly) was a thrill.

Episode 3 of Season 8 of Game of Thrones, “The Long Night,” may go down as one of the most divisive episodes in the series’ history — and just like everyone else, The Night’s Cast, the official podcast of Watchers on the Wall, has opinions!

This week, Petra and Samantha weigh in on the halfway point of the final season of the show and what worked, what didn’t, and how this might affect the final three episodes.

Don’t forget — The Night’s Cast is going live for Season 8! Every Sunday until May 19th, you can find us livestreaming at 5 p.m. EST on the Watchers on the Wall YouTube channel.

The podcast is available on iTunes and SoundCloud, and you can follow us on Twitter as well. Happy listening!

286 responses

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    1. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      I said that. Because if the NK/WW are completely gone now, then that is absolutely horrific storytelling which amounts to nothing more than a distraction.

      I still believe there might be a twist where “there must always be a NK” as there is always is a 3 eyed raven. But if not, seriously, what was the point?

      The AOTD was supposed to serve as an existential threat to humanity…. DEATH…like famine, disease, global warming, overpopulation, whatever. They served to show the folly of human endeavors/titles/hubris when Death was knocking at the door. HUMANITY was supposed to band together to fight them. If only about 5% of all of the world had to face them, and the rest of the world (Kings Landing, everything south of winterfell, Essos, etc.) aren’t faced with the threat of eradication… what was their point all along?

      Not to mention, we are left with a million unanswered questions…. what made them raise now… why is he so connected to Bran…is the NK a seer… how are Mel and the Lord of Light connected and what does she see…etc. etc. The “great war” lasted all of a few hours and the NK was killed in one second…… if that is the culmination of 8 years of “Winter is Coming” , that is not a “misread of the situation”… that is a complete breakdown in storytelling.

      They have 3 more episodes to clear things up and like I said we may not have seen the last of the dead yet. But if we have, I’m not sure they can salvage what they’ve done. Honestly, who cares who sits on a throne if the NK and WW are gone? Sorry, but Cersei isn’t a “bigger bad” than the NK. She just isn’t.

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    2. I knew Bronn wouldn’t show up at the battle, I really think he might try to kill Jaime when he gets to KL.

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    3. 804 preview shows AeJon and Davos leaving WF on horseback. Where do you think they’re going? Wherever it is, wonder why AeJon isn’t flying Rhaegal instead? The preview also shows Drogon and Rhaegal flying, so they can’t be too injured from the battle.

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    4. Ryan,

      I believe we should wait until we see more to be able to judge The Long Night. The director did say the long night is beginning, next week is the middle and episode 5 is the end; so we shall see. But, The Long Night is really good; I enjoyed it for what it is.

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    5. Miguel Sapochnik said that episode 3 was the first episode in a 3 episode arc, but now that the Night King was defeated I’m wondering what that could possible be? It can’t be Cersei as she wasn’t in episode 3. The only thing I can think of is Dany’s fall. Her army was decimated and she lost her best friend/most loyal adviser in episode 3. Maybe that’s just the start and she looses more in the coming episodes. What is Missandei or Jon gets captured by Cersei or she looses a dragon to Qyburn’s scorpions? Would this push her over the edge? I hope not because Dany is one of my favourite characters but we got off far too easily in episode 3. I feel like tragedy is coming in episodes 4 and 5.

      Also I was fearing for her life so much when the wights swarmed Drogon. Actually thought she might die there until Jorah showed up.

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    6. Jack Bauer 24,

      Yeah, I’m wondering the same thing. Where is he going? Why is Dany by herself at the head table in the Great Hall? Maybe Jon is going to try to round up some more troops?

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    7. It’s too late for lamentations. Just look forward to the books now. They broke it for shock value and it’s going to stay broken. Well at least I won’t bother staying up till 2.am from now. I’ll watch it when I watch it.

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    8. Thanks Samantha and Petra, that was an entertaining listen as usual.

      I loved the episode and did find it fulfilling. Yes, I had to do a bit of backfilling in my head to make sense of it all after it finished but it worked for me. A few more major character deaths would have been better and I did expect the night to be longer, the Night King to win this battle (with many characters somehow escaping) but ultimately that he would lose the war somewhere further south. Yes it was blurey and I got confused as to who was who and which dragon was which but I felt that was a deliberate decision and added to the whole “fog of war” element

      I like that Arya killed the Night King and made nonsense of the prophesies. There are many and only a few come true. There was plenty of foreshadowing for Arya in retrospect (God of Death mentioned throughout her story by different characters, Mel’s “eyes” speech, etc and all of that training).

      My point in writing is that I wonder if the strength of negative feeling among (it seems mostly) book fans about this change would be the same if this twist came from GRRM? If he had finished the books and had written that Arya defeats the Night King, would fans still feel so cheated?

      As a show only fan, I don’t feel cheated, and I’m baffled by the anger at all of this.

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    9. Jack Bauer 24:
      804 preview shows AeJon and Davos leaving WF on horseback. Where do you think they’re going? Wherever it is, wonder why AeJon isn’t flying Rhaegal instead? The preview also shows Drogon and Rhaegal flying, so they can’t be too injured from the battle.

      I noticed this too. AeJon and Dany are also never seen together in the preview.
      There are three supersized episodes left, so D&D definitely have something in mind for AeJon’s arc. Perhaps Bran tells AeJon something that sends him a different direction. Or perhaps he will go get justice for the Glovers not answering the call!

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    10. onedon,

      Agree, Sapo is doing another big battle in Episode 5 and I think we still have some things to find out or experience with the dead… but if killing the NK was the final end of them, I’ll be severely disappointed.

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    11. I agree that if they had used Jon or Dany or Jaime or Tyrion or Gendry or Davos or Jorah to kill the NK, it would make them the “super-superhero” of the story and drain all the suspense out of the next half of the season.

      Bran or Arya were perhaps the best options to kill NK that would also not lock the story into a path that required this “NK-killer character” to end up on the throne. Now, we are not sure what happens next and not sure who gets the throne. This is as it should be.

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    12. Undead Elephant,

      Miguel Sapochnik said that episode 3 was the first episode in a 3 episode arc, but now that the Night King was defeated I’m wondering what that could possible be?

      A lot of people have been bringing up that quote but in the a same interview he also refers to season 6 episodes 9 and 10 as one arch so I’m not sure if those comments even mean anything.

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    13. Ryan,

      Ryan, you annoy the f*** out of me.
      Yes, everybody is entitled to their opinion. Yes, a lot of people don’t like the episode. Yes, it was too dark. Yes, yes, yes, blabla. You comment every new article with the same arguments, starting the same conversation over and over. Deal with it, it is done. Chill! xo

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    14. I can’t express how much more interesting the war for the throne and the human drama is to me personally than AOTD.

      Also, Cersei has always been the Game of Thrones villain.

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    15. The prince that was not promised,

      Thanks friend. I posted in this article because as soon as I finished posting in the last one, I saw a new one was published, so I was looking to continue the conversation (with somebody else who wasn’t you) here. I’m glad to know that my one comment out of hundreds is triggering you. Makes me feel special!

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    16. I’ve never seen so many people with their underwear wadded up in their crotch before over basically nothing. How do any of you know Martin is not going to have Arya kill the NK? You don’t. I think this is more butthurt from people’s pet theories about Jon becoming a White Walker, Bran being the NK, Dany becoming a wight, etc. not panning out.

      Objectively, it makes tons of common sense that Arya would kill the NK, Jon himself said that they could not defeat the NK in a straight fight and the episode showed why that was 100% the correct assessment. They needed an assassination, and Arya was their assassin, she trained the whole freaking show for it. Martin’s original outline said their were 5 key players, Dany, Tyrion, Jon, Bran, and ARYA.

      If you look back, they’ve been setting this up for a while. This doesn’t take anything away from Jon or Dany, they’d all be dead now without either of them. Pop a Xanax, smoke a joint, do whatever you gotta do, but just relax and enjoy this absolutely epic TV show. Perhaps Martin may yet satisfy all of your wildest fantasies in the books, if he ever finishes them.

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    17. “I know nothing about battle strategy, but….” Seriously. The Dothraki are not stand behind walls fighters. They fight in the field. They’re calvary. Calvary charges. It’s how they do. The best calvary fighters in the world. They deserved a shot to wipe out the dead. Also, please remember the Free Folk and the Knights of the Vale and every day people were out front with the Unsullied. The Unsullied protected the retreat, but that’s what they do.

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    18. Ryan,

      I completely agree. It was a huge letdown, I can’t believe it’s over so soon, after all that build up. I’m so disappointed that the Night King never made it to King’s Landing, I so wanted to see him put the fear of the gods into Cersei! I’m also hoping there will be some kind of twist. I’m trying to reserve judgement until I’ve seen the whole season, but I can’t help but feel like building up the army of the dead from episode 1 as a global threat, only to kill them off at… Winterfell was a huge mistake in storytelling.

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    19. Ryan,

      Was Sauron’s entire plot in LOTR a distraction because he was defeated too? Really do not understand the logic that is at work here.

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    20. Ryan,

      Not to mention, we are left with a million unanswered questions…. what made them raise now… why is he so connected to Bran…is the NK a seer… how are Mel and the Lord of Light connected and what does she see…etc. etc.

      I agree with most your criticisms however it is a bit unfair to expect D&D to answer all these mysteries. GRRM likely doesn’t even have the answers to much of them so it is up D&D to give satisfying answers which is the hardest part in a story like this. The difference is GRRM has decades to try figure it out(or never figure it out) while the show has to end now. It is very easy to add these mystical elements to a story which fans love to theorize about, it very hard to give satisfying answers to them. The writers of Lost certainly learned that.

      With that said, the show could have come up with a better ending for the WW plot with more mythology, mysticism, and prophecies involved. They could have used Bran’s 3ER powers to bring the Azor Ahai and Lightbringer prophecy to the show which not only would make the WW ending more satisfying but also make the 3ER plot less pointless than it seems now.

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    21. Fiery Heart,

      Couldn’t tell you because I didn’t watch all of those movies. I’m talking about this show, who has been hyping up the AOTD since scene 1 and is literally about the house motto of the main family. If the dead are gone for good, what purpose did they serve?

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    22. White Walkers win at the Fist of the First Men. 1-0

      White Walkers win at Hardhome. 2-0

      White Walkers win the battle where Dany tries to save the day. 3-0

      White Walkers destroy wall and decimate most of the Nights Watch there. 4-0

      White Walkers destroy everybody at Last Hearth. 5-0

      Living People get the biggest army in the history of Westeros. They prepare for a long time with dragon glass.

      White Walkers still nearly destroy man.

      Trained assassin…. Arya Stark… sneaks up and kills the Nights King.

      And people are upset that the Night King was destroyed too easily? The guy was undefeated throughout the entire show. He made the greatest army ever look mediocre. And it was a super trained soldier that was the only downfall.

      And there is a problem here? God, Nerd Culture is both toxic and depressing.

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    23. Brandon: heir underwear wadded up in their crotch before over basically nothing. How do any of you know Martin is not going to have Arya kill the NK? You don’t. I think this is more butthurt from people’s pet theories about Jon becoming a White Walker, Bran being the NK, Dany becoming a wight, etc. not panning out.

      I’d advise you against assuming why people think what they think, it’s just a silly thing to do.
      Most people don’t give a f*ck about dumb theories like Bran being the NK or Jon becoming a WW.

      Most people who are underwhelmed by this episode are not taking issue with any of that. It’s much more about the fact that they resolved the whole threat very quickly and in a very anti-climactic way.

      As for Arya killing the NK, I personally don’t love it but I don’t mind it either. However it won’t happen in the books, and yes we DO know that for pretty damn certain.

      Why ? Because the Night King does not exist in the books. There is no dark lord whose death would mean the automatic disintegration of the entire army of the dead and all the White Walkers. GRRM has stated several times that his books will not have any such figure.

      I’m sure Arya will be important, but she will not single-handedly destroy the White Walkers.

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    24. Jack Bauer 24:
      804 preview shows AeJon and Davos leaving WF on horseback. Where do you think they’re going? Wherever it is, wonder why AeJon isn’t flying Rhaegal instead? The preview also shows Drogon and Rhaegal flying, so they can’t be too injured from the battle.

      I gave this some thought, and my only conclusion is Howland Reed, via Deepwood Motte (since they keep mentioning Lord Glover).

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    25. Reek,

      yeah the whole country is a troll, some of you thrones fans i must say are the worst people i have ever encountered on the internet, you need help

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    26. The Bastard,

      There is no way that a TV show could mount the scale and ambition of a white walker story line that was set up by the novels.
      ‘What they can do is realize that this series has been far more about the politics of humanity and return to the original central conflicts of power struggles.

      And I’ll say it again….

      why wouldn’t we end with Cersei Lannister as the final villain? She has been the villain since season 1. A villain with a compelling complex back story and intriguing motivations that have unfolded throughout 10 years of story telling..

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    27. BlueRoses:
      Ryan,

      I completely agree. It was a huge letdown, I can’t believe it’s over so soon, after all that build up.I’m so disappointed that the Night King never made it to King’s Landing, I so wanted to see him put the fear of the gods into Cersei! I’m also hoping there will be some kind of twist. I’m trying to reserve judgement until I’ve seen the whole season, but I can’t help but feel like building up the army of the dead from episode 1 as a global threat, only to kill them off at… Winterfell was a huge mistake in storytelling.

      Very well said.

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    28. A Knight of Several Lunchtimes:
      Thanks Samantha and Petra, that was an entertaining listen as usual.

      I loved the episode and did find it fulfilling.Yes, I had to do a bit of backfilling in my head to make sense of it all after it finished but it worked for me.A few more major character deaths would have been better and I did expect the night to be longer, the Night King to win this battle (with many characters somehow escaping) but ultimately that he would lose the war somewhere further south.Yes it was blurey and I got confused as to who was who and which dragon was which but I felt that was a deliberate decision and added to the whole “fog of war” element

      I like that Arya killed the Night King and made nonsense of the prophesies.There are many and only a few come true.There was plenty of foreshadowing for Arya in retrospect (God of Death mentioned throughout her story by different characters, Mel’s “eyes” speech, etc and all of that training).

      My point in writing is that I wonder if the strength of negative feeling among (it seems mostly) book fans about this change would be the same if this twist came from GRRM?If he hadfinished the books and had written that Arya defeats the Night King, would fans still feel so cheated?

      As a show only fan, I don’t feel cheated, and I’m baffled by the anger at all of this.

      To try and help alleviate the bafflement you feel as a show-only fan to the dissatisfaction among a large amount of fans who may have read the books, I highlighted some parts of your thoughts to try to highlight some reasons why.

      The first one is the reference to making nonsense of the prophecies. Prophesies, dreams and visions play a much larger part of the books. To put it quite simply, if they have been a red herring all along and have no meaning, then it will be an enormously unsatisfying ‘twist’ for GRRM to spin on his readers, which explains some anger.

      The second is the reference to the foreshadowing of Arya to be the one to kill the NK. In the books, she never meets Mel, never gets told of the eyes she will shut forever, and Syrio doesn’t repeatedly ask her “What do we say to the god of death?”. Arya isn’t involved in any of the dreams or visions that involve the Others (the WW), doesn’t match up with a lot of the prophesies and hasn’t been foreshadowed to be involved. So there is a discordance with what we are seeing on screen that feels totally at odds with what we know from the books. After thinking about it for a few days, I don’t mind her being the one to kill him (not that I minded much at the time, my problem is that they sidelined Jon totally and robbed him of meaningful involvement in the climax of what has been his story so far), as in the show they needed someone to do it and I understand their reasoning for choosing Arya. In the books it is highly unlikely to unfold in the same way as there is no NK (yet, though GRRM is a master gardener and if he hasn’t sewed the seeds for a figurehead for the Others by the end of book 5, I doubt he will start to do so now). That’s not to say Arya won’t be involved in the downfall of the Others, she almost certainly will be, it just highly likely won’t happen this way.

      For me the biggest disappointment (and anger) is leaving Jon largely out of this climax by having him ride a dragon that has never before needed a rider to follow Dany’s orders for the bulk of the episode, hardly help in the fighting (which is what he has developed across his many long seasons) and that there was no resolution to his link to the NK. It’s like they took their idea of ‘not having Jon do it because he’s the hero and it would be too predictable’ too far by just keeping him out of the fighting and pinned down by a dragon. It would be like keeping Arya out of the battle – if we hadn’t seen Arya fight this episode, wouldn’t we all feel cheated too?

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    29. Fiery Heart:
      Ryan,

      Was Sauron’s entire plot in LOTR a distraction because he was defeated too? Really do not understand the logic that is at work here.

      It would have been if Sauron was defeated at the end of Two Towers with Return of the King being all about Aragorn removing Denethor from power and becoming King of Gondor.

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    30. I am not surprised by all the hate that this episode is getting (and sometimes I am like: do you have to write your hate down under every article? like we get it already…). I understand that some people have a certain vision of how things should go and are disappointed when that vision is not portrayed on the screen. As a book reader I had these feelings of disappointment when I watched season 4 for the first time (really the first season where the series had major changes compared to the book). I was disappointed when that season did not end with Lady Stoneheart. However, with season 5 and the seasons afterwards I started to see the show as its own entity. My love for season 4 has grown after rewatching it and even though I had sometimes issues with the show (Dorne, the pacing in season 7) I largely enjoy it.

      I loved the last episode. I loved the set-up, the character moments and the cinematography. I don’t think that Arya killing the Night King with Catspaw was a cheap surprise moment. I would have been cheap if it was for example Sansa (or someone else with no background in sneaking up on people and killing them) and if there was no foreshadowing that this was a possibility. I liked the idea that it wasn’t Jon and I think that it fits the show and even the books (I have the idea that people who are referencing prophecies are forgetting that they are never that simple ”Prophecy is like a treacherous woman. She takes your member in her mouth, and you moan with the pleasure of it and think, how sweet, how fine, how good this is… and then her teeth snap shut and your moans turn to screams… Prophecy will bite your prick off everytime”…. The Night King also does not exist in the book, so it is even more complicated there…). I have never seen Game of Thrones as a ”Chosen One” story (like Ned Stark dies in the first season) and I think that the episode showed that it was a group effort. Without the armies of Dany they would not have lasted that long, without Jon the armies would not have been there, without Theon Bran would have already been dead, without Beric and the Hound Arya would have not made it into the Godswood etc. etc. ….. ”The lone wolf dies, but the pack survives.” I think almost every character had a part to play in this battle and I love it.

      As for the Night King and the WW being defeated… I think that for some people it would have always been disappointing, because they were setup as something truly powerful and almost undefeatable. I think that for those people it would have been only been satisfying if everybody just died at the end (and that it would be like a cautionary tale about how humans are unable to deal with real problems)

      And can we stop using the term plot armor so much… like plot armor used to mean that a character had clearly fatal wounds or had dodged bullets in a very unconvincing way, now it seems to be used whenever somebody did not die on GOT. (like you could maybe reason that Sam had a little bit of plot armor in that episode, but he always had plot armor. Did we forget that at the end of season 2 the Army of the Dead just ignored him :p. Sam is just one of those characters that will survive).

      As for the remaining episodes: I am just curious what will happen. I hope just that Arya is not the one who kills Cersei (I know some people are suggesting it and even hoping for it, but I don’t like the prospect of it, it has to be Jaime for me (or her baby or maybe Euron…. I just think that her death should be tied to her story and who she is a person))

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    31. Nick20: I’d advise you against assuming why people think what they think, it’s just a silly thing to do.
      Most people don’t give a f*ck about dumb theories like Bran being the NK or Jon becoming a WW.

      Most people who are underwhelmed by this episode are not taking issue with any of that. It’s much more about the fact that they resolved the whole threat very quickly and in a very anti-climactic way.

      As for Arya killing the NK, I personally don’t love it but I don’t mind it either. However it won’t happen in the books, and yes we know that for pretty damn certain.

      Why ? Because the Night King does not exist in the books. There is no dark lord whose death would mean the automatic disintegration of the entire army of the dead and all the White Walkers. GRRM has stated several times that his books will not have any such figure.

      I’m sure Arya will be important, but she will not single-handedly destroy the White Walkers.

      Resolved it quickly? They lost the first 5 encounters with the white walkers. This was a last stand.

      Are we watching the same show?

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    32. The Bastard,

      He lost his first battle, that’s the problem. He did not affect Westeros at large in any way. His terror was unleashed between Last Hearth and Winterfell, and that’s it. The fact that the White Walkers never got further south than Winterfell is anti-climactic for many people, and it’s completely understandable.

      His “victories” beyond the Wall are not significant, they’re not what people have been looking forward to for years. People have been waiting to see the Long Night and the Winter devastating Westeros. All of Westeros. As it is, the Long Night lasted a few hours. That is underwhelming for many people. Has nothing to do with “nerd culture” being toxic.

      I don’t understand why differences of opinion about a TV show are depressing to you. If you’re depressed by something so trivial, then maybe THAT is a problem with nerd culture, specifically some people taking it way too seriously.

      There should be nothing depressing about the fact that some people found the resolution to be underwhelming.

      Accept it and move on.

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    33. Nick20: It would have been if Sauron was defeated at the end of Two Towers with Return of the King being all about Aragorn removing Denethor from power and becoming King of Gondor.

      Fist of the First Men, Hardhome, The Beyond the Wall Heist…. those are your Helm’s Deep Battles.

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    34. Che: For me the biggest disappointment (and anger) is leaving Jon largely out of this climax by having him ride a dragon that has never before needed a rider to follow Dany’s orders for the bulk of the episode, hardly help in the fighting (which is what he has developed across his many long seasons) and that there was no resolution to his link to the NK. It’s like they took their idea of ‘not having Jon do it because he’s the hero and it would be too predictable’ too far by just keeping him out of the fighting and pinned down by a dragon. It would be like keeping Arya out of the battle – if we hadn’t seen Arya fight this episode, wouldn’t we all feel cheated too?

      Nailed it.

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    35. The Bastard,

      I’d hardly call any of those “battles”. Fist of the First men was a small group of rangers. Hardhome was a massacre of half women/children where they didn’t know the AOTD was coming. Beyond the wall there was like 10 people who got bailed out by the dragons.

      This was the first (and last) true fight in the “Great War”.

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    36. Nick20:
      The Bastard,

      He lost his first battle, that’s the problem. He did not affect Westeros at large in any way. His terror was unleashed between Last Hearth and Winterfell, and that’s it. The fact that the White Walkers never got further south than Winterfell is anti-climactic for many people, and it’s completely understandable.

      His “victories” beyond the Wall are not significant, they’re not what people have been looking forward to for years. People have been waiting to see the Long Night and the Winter devastating Westeros. All of Westeros. As it is, the Long Night lasted a few hours. That is underwhelming for many people. Has nothing to do with “nerd culture” being toxic.

      I don’t understand why differences of opinion about a TV show are depressing to you. If you’re depressed by something so trivial, then maybe THAT is a problem with nerd culture, specifically some people taking it way too seriously.

      There should be nothing depressing about the fact that some people found the resolution to be underwhelming.

      Accept it and move on.

      So now conflicts beyond the wall aren’t significant? You are moving goal posts. Was Helms Deep not important because it didn’t take place in Gondor?

      Hardhome was very important. It gave the Night King a much much bigger army.

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    37. Che:

      For me the biggest disappointment (and anger) is leaving Jon largely out of this climax by having him ride a dragon that has never before needed a rider to follow Dany’s orders for the bulk of the episode, hardly help in the fighting (which is what he has developed across his many long seasons) and that there was no resolution to his link to the NK. It’s like they took their idea of ‘not having Jon do it because he’s the hero and it would be too predictable’ too far by just keeping him out of the fighting and pinned down by a dragon. It would be like keeping Arya out of the battle – if we hadn’t seen Arya fight this episode, wouldn’t we all feel cheated too?

      So true. Jon’s place should have been in the Godswood with Bran the entire time. If the plan was for Jon to rush in with a valyrian steel sword if the dragonfire didn’t work, what about all the time and danger leading up to that, all the other wights and White Walkers that could have killed Bran while Jon was up there flying around with a useless (at that time) sword? No one thought to have a VS weapon at the handy protecting Bran?

      Disclaimer: I loved the episode and I loved everything about Arya in the episode! But after the blush is off that rose, I do have issues with their wacky battle logistics.

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    38. The Bastard: Resolved it quickly? They lost the first 5 encounters with the white walkers. This was a last stand.

      Are we watching the same show?

      What happened beyond the Wall is not the same, obviously. I find it very disingenuous that you keep pretending like you don’t understand that people wanted to see more of the WW south of the Wall. Those massacres and skirmishes beyond the Wall are not battles with armies, and they did not affect the Seven Kingdoms.

      The whole threat was that the WW would come south and devastate the kingdom. That did not happen. That’s what people are complaining about. The WW were in one episode after breaching the Wall. One episode.

      Stop acting like you don’t get that that is what people are underwhelmed by. They wanted to see a war against them that would go further south than Winterfell. It’s not that hard to understand.

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    39. I think we just need to accept that the show created the NK in order to have a single point of failure, that way they would could the battle on a scale that is realistic to what they could achieve, and then move onto their “endgame”
      Which is the power struggle for the throne.

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    40. Ryan:
      The Bastard,

      I’d hardly call any of those “battles”.Fist of the First men was a small group of rangers. Hardhome was a massacre of half women/children where they didn’t know the AOTD was coming. Beyond the wall there was like 10 people who got bailed out by the dragons.

      This was the first (and last) true fight in the “Great War”.

      Where the battles in America for Independance not actually battles because of Guerrilla Warfare? Just because one side wasn’t fully ready doesn’t mean it wasn’t a battle. That was the big advantage of the night king. He could strike at any time.

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    41. The Bastard: Fist of the First Men, Hardhome, The Beyond the Wall Heist…. those are your Helm’s Deep Battles.

      Those are not battles. You just named two massacres and a dumb mission that involved 7 men.
      And those encounters are beyond the Wall, and therefore do not equal to what people were wanting to see, which was a long and devastating winter that would affect the Seven Kingdoms.

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    42. ShameShameShame: I gave this some thought, and my only conclusion is Howland Reed, via Deepwood Motte (since they keepmentioning Lord Glover).

      When have they mentioned Glover this season?

        Quote  Reply

    43. ShameShameShame,

      My own reading for why they had Jon riding a dragon (I mean in the story, not necessarily why the writers chose it) is that they needed at least two dragons to compete with Viserion and to get a chance to overpower him.

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    44. Nick20: What happened beyond the Wall is not the same, obviously. I find it very disingenuous that you keep pretending like you don’t understand that people wanted to see more of the WW south of the Wall. Those massacres and skirmishes beyond the Wall are not battles with armies, and they did not affect the Seven Kingdoms.

      The whole threat was that the WW would come south and devastate the kingdom. That did not happen. That’s what people are complaining about. The WW were in one episode after breaching the Wall. One episode.

      Stop acting like you don’t get that that is what people are underwhelmed by. They wanted to see a war against them that would go further south than Winterfell. It’s not that hard to understand.

      You are moving goal posts and then claiming I don’t understand. It is comical.

      You are literally THAT GUY. The guy who has all these ideas in his head of how his show will end…. and when it goes differently…. cant handle it and complains.

      I see what you are saying. You are just wrong.

        Quote  Reply

    45. The Bastard: So now conflicts beyond the wall aren’t significant? You are moving goal posts. Was Helms Deep not important because it didn’t take place in Gondor?

      Hardhome was very important. It gave the Night King a much much bigger army.

      Helm’s Deep was a battle between men, elves, and orcs. It was part of the War of the Ring. The enemy was actively attacking the world of men.

      Until Season 8 however, the WW were stuck beyond the Wall. The Great War had not begun yet, and there were no actual battles between the armies of Westeros and the WW. That only happened in this last episode. This is not a difficult concept to understand.

      People wanted to see White Walkers go further south and have an impact on the Seven Kingdoms as a whole.

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    46. Nick20: Those are not battles. You just named two massacres and a dumb mission that involved 7 men.
      And those encounters are beyond the Wall, and therefore do not equal to what people were wanting to see, which was a long and devastating winter that would affect the Seven Kingdoms.

      Exactly my point – if this was the true end of NK/WWs then they were never the threat they were billed as since the beginning. They were a threat to Winterfell and the north and a very small percentage of the world. And the north (Starks, northmen, wildlings, Night’s Watch) already believed and had concern about the AOTD since the start. What existential threat did they pose to anyone south of Winterfell?

        Quote  Reply

    47. Nick20: Those are not battles. You just named two massacres and a dumb mission that involved 7 men.
      And those encounters are beyond the Wall, and therefore do not equal to what people were wanting to see, which was a long and devastating winter that would affect the Seven Kingdoms.

      Of course they are battles. It is guerilla warfare. The nights watch went up north specifically to fix what was going on and get wrecked at the fist.

        Quote  Reply

    48. Brandon: How do any of you know Martin is not going to have Arya kill the NK?

      Nobody can say for sure what will happen in the books of course.

      However, a good guess that this won’t happen lies in the fact that The Night King does not even exist in the books and was a big baddie show creation. Something GRRM himself confirmed when he wrote about not confusing the show Night King with the character of folk lore the Night’s King in the books.

        Quote  Reply

    49. orange: Well a good guess that this won’t happen lies in the fact that The Night King does not even exist in the books and was a big baddie show creation. Something GRRM himself confirmed when he openly spoke about not confusing the show Night King with the character of folk lore the Night’s King in the books.

      The Great Other does.

        Quote  Reply

    50. Che,

      Thanks for your considered and helpful reply, Che. That all makes sense and I can understand long time book fans’ anger that the ending they expected for that part of the story didn’t happen. To me, it made good TV that the two expected saviours became bogged down and waylaid and didn’t save the day: someone else did.

      The main reason for my writing, though, was to get a sense from book readers of whether they would feel so let down if the idea of Arya ending the Night King had come from GRRM. You mention that you’re convinced that this won’t happen in the books…but what if it does? Would you be as angry with GRRM as with David and Dan?

      After all, the best thing about pre-season 5 thrones (i.e. those with GRRM’s source material) was that you expected the unexpected. I can appreciate that it’s frustrating that the Azor Ahai (sp?) prophecy hasn’t played out as many expected but fulfilling prophecies just doesn’t seem like GRRM’s style to me. Then again, I’ve only read half of one of the books so am aware I know nothing.

      PS – I also thought it unnecessary for Jon to ride the dragon. The others never needed their own pilots before! Also, how in the seven hells do they hold on?

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    51. crookshanks:
      ShameShameShame,

      My own reading for why they had Jon riding a dragon (I mean in the story, not necessarily why the writers chose it) is that they needed at least two dragons to compete with Viserion and to get a chance to overpower him.

      But Jon didn’t need to be riding Rhaegal for Rhaegal to fight Viserion. The dragons have always fought without riders before.

      Rhaegal didn’t need to be ridden to fight.

      In fact, you could say that it’s fairly insane for Jon (who has very little experience riding a dragon) to decide that that’s what he should be doing during the battle : getting in a dragon fight.

      Seems like he’d be more useful commanding the armies and fighting with his one hit kill sword.

      Riding a dragon in these snowy and dark conditions when he’s never ridden a dragon in battle, and when he knows he’ll be facing a wight dragon, is pretty nonsensical.

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    52. Nick20,

      “People wanted to see….” is another way of saying your vision didnt come true and now you are having a temper tantrum.

      The White Walkers were attacking the world of men so much that Mance Raider assembled all of the wildlings to go south.

      And as established by the show…. the only real difference between men and wildlings is what side they were on when the wall went up. But WW have been attacking men for years.

      You really need to watch the show more. Less typing… more watching.

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    53. Ryan,

      You’re projecting all of your own expectations onto the story and are disappointed that they haven’t been fulfilled.

      You’re asking for answers to questions that you personally want answered, but which aren’t essential to the narrative.

      You’re expecting things that are impractical on a TV show with a finite time scale and budget, that’s also required to keep the audience consistently entertained.

      That’s basically what your frustration comes down to.

      The show is far from perfect. But it was always an impossibility that it would fulfill everyone’s grand expectations.

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    54. Jack Bauer 24,

      Twice. Once, at the council where Sansa tasked Lord Umber to head out and fetch his people. Then again by Jon I believe, angry that the Glovers didn’t come when summoned. Sorry I can’t remember the exact scene for a reference.

      Both the Glovers and the Reeds owe a penance to House Stark. We know the Reeds always got a pass, but this time it may be a pretense to get Jon and Howland talking.

        Quote  Reply

    55. A Knight of Several Lunchtimes:
      Che,

      Thanks for your considered and helpful reply, Che.That all makes sense and I can understand long time book fans’ anger that the ending they expected for that part of the story didn’t happen.To me, it made good TV that the two expected saviours became bogged down and waylaid and didn’t save the day: someone else did.

      The main reason for my writing, though, was to get a sense from book readers of whether they would feel so let down if the idea of Arya ending the Night King had come from GRRM.You mention that you’re convinced that this won’t happen in the books…but what if it does?Would you be as angry with GRRM as with David and Dan?

      After all, the best thing about pre-season 5 thrones (i.e. those with GRRM’s source material) was that you expected the unexpected. I can appreciate that it’s frustrating that the Azor Ahai (sp?) prophecy hasn’t played out as many expected but fulfilling prophecies just doesn’t seem like GRRM’s style to me. Then again, I’ve only read half of one of the books so am aware I know nothing.

      PS – I also thought it unnecessary for Jon to ride the dragon.The others never needed their own pilots before!Also, how in the seven hells do they hold on?

      Thanks for your reply. Just to give context, I am not a ‘book purist’ and actually only read the books after the season 5 cliffhanger when I desperately wanted some answers and foolishly thought I’d find some in the books. How wrong I was! I hadn’t realised that those storylines literally ended at the same place (like Jon dying) or were totally different (like Sansa’s). I devoured those books in the space of a month or two as books 1-3 were so damned amazing and books 4 and 5 were still very good, but less so than the first three (I highly recommend reading them!). So I probably don’t represent the main book readers domain (I’m also not that angry, just more disappointed for Jon’s narrative arc feeling unfinished in this respect, I know the show isn’t finished yet).

      Personally, I’m not angry at the thought of GRRM using Arya to kill the NK in his books, more just perplexed at the thought; so perplexed, I just can’t see it happening. I think she will be involved (I’m sure all the main characters will), but I just can’t see GRRM introducing a mothership, 2D evil character that once killed by a conventional (though rare) weapon by one of the main characters reduces the entire AOTD to corpses and piles of ice – that works in a visual medium, not so much for the sprawling epic GRRM has created. He has frequently stated how he doesn’t like purely evil characters, which leads many book readers to feel that the AOTD will have a big twist in the books, that they won’t be pure evil, death personified as they are in the show. Arya will be very important in the books, but I doubt it will be by stabbing the self-destruct button on the AOTD. Hopefully we will find out one day!

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    56. Ryan,

      While I respect your opinions I don’t think it is right to say that the storytelling is bad or to question the whole concept of the show just because you expected something different from what was delivered.

      In contrast to you I am almost relieved that the Night King is now dealt with (without wasting more than one episode on it) and that this (for me personally!) rather secondary plot line has ended.
      I never really cared much about the NK and the WW. None of the questions you ask in your post seem really pressing to me. What got me interested in GOT was the politics, the players, the intrigues and the ultimate question of who is the best player and comes out on top?! The show is after all called Game of Thrones and not Westeros Zombie Apocalypse. Night King & Company were good for some thrills along the road, an element of suspense, they were good for advancing Jon Snows development (not as the great slayer of the NK but as a contester for the throne) and to position the chess pieces on the board for the final round. As far as I am concerned they have served their purpose and may now RIP. I am thrilled that there are 3 episodes left to deal with what I consider the actual backbone of the show and I can’t wait to see how it will all play out.

      Just to make it clear once more, this is not meant as an attack on your opinions but to illustrate that other people might feel differently about this episode/the entire show for various reasons.

      One of the very few ultimate truths in life: You just can’t please everybody.

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    57. crookshanks,

      I certainly get that. But the point was made that Dany could control riderless dragons very successfully, so why risk Jon, who has only had a scant half hour of flight time?

      I’m nitpicking really. Let’s just say I can see how D&D thought it was logical to have Jon on a dragon.

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    58. The Bastard,

      Exactly. It’s been in the making for years. If anyone bothers to read the Arya chapters or go back and look at the Arya stuff from season one, it’s there. It’s all there. The WW have been around since season one; undefeated. They finally go down and people are upset we don’t get The Walking Dead: Westeros.

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    59. Nick20,

      You are really nitpicking a character because he is dragon riding instead of being a ground troop?

      How do you even suspend your disbelieve for a fantasy show in the first place?

        Quote  Reply

    60. The Bastard: You are moving goal posts and then claiming I don’t understand. It is comical.

      You are literally THAT GUY. The guy who has all these ideas in his head of how his show will end…. and when it goes differently…. cant handle it and complains.

      I see what you are saying. You are just wrong.

      I’m not moving any goal posts. I’ve been saying from the beginning that some people like myself just wanted the White Walkers to get further South and impact the kingdom as a whole. I’ve always said that. No posts have been moved.

      And I have no problem with things happening differently than what I imagined. All I wanted was a more protracted conflict south of the Wall. That’s what was foreshadowed. An actual Long Night that would affect everyone. Not just a few hours of fighting at Winterfell.

      You just keep feigning like you don’t understand this point.

      And no, I’m not “wrong”. No one is “right” or “wrong”, it’s a f*cking TV show. It’s all subjective.
      Everyone is entitled to their opinion. I have no obligation to be satisfied with how they wrapped up the White Walker storyline.
      I’m not “wrong” for saying I wish the conflict had affected the southern parts of Westeros.

      You need to stop acting like your opinion is objectively superior. It’s not. Grow up.

        Quote  Reply

    61. Nick20,

      You continue to admit that your frustration is the difference between your expectations and what really happened.

      Word of advice…. when you get into a big series like this next time….

      Enjoy all of the theories and side discussions. But keep an open mind when watching the next installment.

      You will enjoy nerdy stuff a lot more this way. I’ve been where you have before with other series. It isn’t healthy.

      And my opinion is not superior. I just have a better perspective on this. You got too worked up over how you thought it would go and it ruined your enjoyment of a big episode.

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    62. The Bastard:
      Nick20,

      You are really nitpicking a character because he is dragon riding instead of being a ground troop?

      How do you even suspend your disbelieve for a fantasy show in the first place?

      I brought this up initially, so I thought I might reply.

      We’re not talking about just any character, we’re talking about Jon, who has spent seven seasons honing his skills as a warrior, who has been in the most battles with this enemy and knows them the best, who has one of the very few Valyrian Steel weapons that can kill WWs (the characters didn’t know they were going to sit out the battle), who has only ridden a dragon once before and surely needs a bit more training before he takes one into battle (?!)… these are valid concerns and are hardly nitpicking when you consider how Jon was sidelined in this episode, the climax of what has, until now, been his story.

      I’ll repeat what I mentioned in another comment, if Arya weren’t involved in the fighting for Winterfell, if she were the one on a dragon, wouldn’t people feel perplexed and that her skills hadn’t been utilised?

        Quote  Reply

    63. The Bastard:
      Nick20,

      You are really nitpicking a character because he is dragon riding instead of being a ground troop?

      How do you even suspend your disbelieve for a fantasy show in the first place?

      Fantasy doesn’t mean characters can make illogical decisions. Part of the appeal of this series is the grounded nature of the battles and military strategy. It does not make sense for Jon to ride a dragon given the situation. It’s not necessary, he’s not used to it, there’s no visibility, and he has better things to do.

      That said I still enjoyed it, it was cool. Just not very logical.

      And it would be nice if you stopped harassing me for having different opinions than you do.

        Quote  Reply

    64. Watching again, one can’ t help compare to Sapochnik’s Hardhome and Battle of the Bastards. One thing that strikes me is pacing and framing. Benioff is right too much action leads to a visual narrative fatigue. But the breakaways are The Crypts (which seemed zero sum) , the Godswood (kind of waiting game there), and Arya , which is the best elaboration. Dany and Jon’s separate action is very good but seemed to need to be more integrated with the main battle, or maybe their fight with the NK should have even been more elaborated that it was.
      After a lot of thick and overwhelming fog-of-war melee it felt like all those in the thick of that should had a re-focus because it got way too repetitious.
      Not being knowledgeable of the mechanics , but having watched a lot of movies, seemed to me to be an editing problem, as if all the footage could be taken and redone.
      Maybe D&D are at fault, as if a bit overwhelmed by the task…. I wonder what they think?
      All that said I was entertained by this episode.

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    65. The Bastard: Enjoy all of the theories and side discussions. But keep an open mind when watching the next installment.

      I do. Keeping an open mind doesn’t mean I have to like everything. Critical thinking is allowed, you know.

      People are allowed to disagree with a decision made by the showrunners.

      I did not hate the episode, I enjoyed it quite a bit. I just think the resolution is anti-climactic. That’s my opinion, and the opinion of thousands of other people. Deal with it.

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    66. ShameShameShame:
      Jack Bauer 24,

      Twice.Once, at the council where Sansa tasked Lord Umber to head out and fetch his people.Then again by Jon I believe, angry that the Glovers didn’t come when summoned.Sorry I can’t remember the exact scene for a reference.

      Both the Glovers and the Reeds owe a penance to House Stark.We know the Reeds always got a pass, but this time it may be a pretense to get Jon and Howland talking.

      I just rewatched the scene and Sansa did not mention Glover at all in that scene. She tells Umber to hurry back, Jon says they need to send a raven to the Night’s Watch, Lyanna does her normal grumpy snarky thing, and Tyrion gives his little speech about banding together or dying.

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    67. Che,

      Arya isn’t a Targ. Jon is. Targs ride into battle on dragons. It is known. There is the entire conquering of Westeros as proof.

        Quote  Reply

    68. Jack Bauer 24: I just rewatched the scene and Sansa did not mention Glover at all in that scene. She tells Umber to hurry back, Jon says they need to send a raven to the Night’s Watch, Lyanna does her normal grumpy snarky thing,and Tyrion gives his little speech about banding together or dying.

      She mentions Glover when speaks to Jon alone.

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    69. Che: I brought this up initially, so I thought I might reply.

      We’re not talking about just any character, we’re talking about Jon, who has spent seven seasons honing his skills as a warrior, who has been in the most battles with this enemy and knows them the best, who has one of the very few Valyrian Steel weapons that can kill WWs (the characters didn’t know they were going to sit out the battle), who has only ridden a dragon once before and surely needs a bit more training before he takes one into battle (?!)… these are valid concerns and are hardly nitpicking when you consider how Jon was sidelined in this episode, the climax of what has, until now, been his story.

      I’ll repeat what I mentioned in another comment, if Arya weren’t involved in the fighting for Winterfell, if she were the one on a dragon, wouldn’t people feel perplexed and that her skills hadn’t been utilised?

      Thank you for making valid points and for the back up.

        Quote  Reply

    70. Che:

      For me the biggest disappointment (and anger) is leaving Jon largely out of this climax by having him ride a dragon that has never before needed a rider to follow Dany’s orders for the bulk of the episode, hardly help in the fighting (which is what he has developed across his many long seasons) and that there was no resolution to his link to the NK. It’s like they took their idea of ‘not having Jon do it because he’s the hero and it would be too predictable’ too far by just keeping him out of the fighting and pinned down by a dragon. It would be like keeping Arya out of the battle – if we hadn’t seen Arya fight this episode, wouldn’t we all feel cheated too?

      Yeah, I’m still thinking about exactly this.
      I’m actually fantastic with Arya killing the NK. I wasn’t expecting it, but I love her and everything in her story line leads to hugely important role in endgame (her direwolf’s name, all her mentors, where the heart is etc)
      But Jon’s entire story line was leading him not to games and thrones, but to that point, that moment, and though he was insanely brave to fight on that dragon, Dany and Drogon had to save him.
      And though he ran at the NK despite the guy raising dead around him, Dany and Drogon had to save him.
      And though he left the battle and Dany and his pinned down friends to try and get to Bran and the NK, the injured Viserion kept him trapped and unable to do anything.

      So the one character who has been in the most battles in the series and is arguably one of the best fighters, had no great plan and wasn’t able to have a scene like Theon or Arya or any of the other characters.
      Instead he yelled at a dragon. I mean I get that NK saw him as the threat so he was kept away. And I’m almost desperately willing to believe any strange theory ie he was distracting NK on purpose so someone else could get in there. But what it looked like on both my watches of the episode was that he not only wasn’t the hero, but he was the least important person in the only battle he ever cared about winning.
      There were other ways to go. He could have fought multiple WW or fought and nearly lost to NK only to have Arya save the day. Or just dived on Viserion and tried to kill him in a last ditch effort to save his brother.
      Even Dany, who’d never held a sword or fought a battle without her dragons in her life was out there trying to help Jorah in apocalypse land.
      I think that’s the main issue still getting under my skin.

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    71. With the Night King gone, you get the feeling Westeros lost a crucial check and balance.

      Certainly, Qyburn has pondered this dead leader vacancy. He probably keeps a shard of dragonglass at the ready to shove into Cersei, should she need to rule as undead eternal.

      While the test which we see as “The Mountain” worked out, I’m inclined to believe what kicked him out of the Citadel will come to haunt him in creating “Night Cersei”.

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    72. The Bastard:
      Nick20,

      People who liked something “quite a bit” dont post on message boards complaining the entire time.

      People do and say whatever the f*ck they want. I’m not obligated to behave how you want me to.

      I did indeed enjoy the episode a lot, that doesn’t mean it’s perfect. And I have not just been complaining. In several of my posts yesterday I mentioned that I thought the episode was very tense and thrilling, and that as a stand alone it was great. What bugged me was that it wasn’t satisfying to me as the culmination of the WW story.

      You’re in for a bad time if you try to tell me what I think. I know better than you what I think about the episode, and what I’ve said about it. Keep your assumptions to yourself.

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    73. Ramsay's 20th Good Man,

      Quit defaulting to saying people’s “Projections” aren’t being met as your argument. Strawman. You have no idea what other people are thinking. I have/had no “theories”; I’m not touting my youtube channel and I wasn’t waiting for The Lord of Light to appear out of nowhere, or Bran to BE the Night King, or some other such random theorized nonsense.

      All I am asking for is sensical storytelling and REASONABLE expectations/explanations of the MAIN plot points of the story – the dead being one of the biggest if not THE biggest.

      I’ve got no issues with Arya being the killer – it was heavily foreshadowed and expected. I have no problem with the NK being defeated – you expect that they would eventually lose with the winning side taking on heavy losses as part of the “bittersweet” ending.

      And there’s a reason that this episode is the 3rd lowest ranked GOT episode EVER on RT and it’s in the bottom half on IMDB – plenty of people have qualms with it, so acting like people are wrong to question it and assuming things about other’s opinions is foolish.

      My “frustration” is that the BIGGEST antagonist which has been touted since Scene 1 breached the Wall 2 episodes ago are now extinct after one real battle and only threatening about 5% of the world’s population – and it was the population which already knew they existed. Yes, they are the biggest antagonist. The Stark words aren’t “Cersei is coming”. They didn’t build a 300 mile wall to keep Cersei out. Cersei can’t raise the dead to fight for her. And without any further plot/explanation to their story, the AOTD and the NK amounted to an 8 season McGuffin.

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    74. The Bastard:
      Che,

      Arya isn’t a Targ. Jon is.Targs ride into battle on dragons. It is known. There is the entire conquering of Westeros as proof.

      The example was to illustrate that a character well known for their fighting prowess is being taken out of the action, where they would be best suited, to ride a dragon they don’t really know how to ride and has not needed a rider before, seems nonsensical. It was not a genuine proposition that Arya would be able to ride a dragon (though she’d certainly be willing).

      Your response doesn’t answer any of the genuine reasons why Jon would have been better suited in the battle (probably guarding Bran). Think about who Jon is. Would Jon leave Bran to be defended by Theon (who doesn’t have a Valyrian steel weapon) knowing the NK would come for him? In my opinion (just to make that clear), Jon was put on a dragon to keep him away from the battle and Bran so he would not be able to kill the NK. D&D didn’t want him to be the one to do it because it’s too predictable, so they had to come up with a way to keep Jon from being near Bran. The problem with this way of writing (if what I say is accurate and we will never know the truth of the matter) – avoiding the predictable route Jon would take, to be by Bran’s side, is that they have to get the character to act in a way that doesn’t quite make sense and feels discordant with what we know of them. It’s writing against what we know of a character purposefully.

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    75. Jack Bauer 24,

      I’ll keep an eye out on rewatches, it’s even referenced on the GoT wiki (I checked) that Glover is mentioned during the “Winterfell” episode. Like I said, I probably got the scene wrong.

      He was mentioned, I swear by the old gods and the new.

      “Season 8
      After Jon Snow steps down as King in the North, Lord Glover returns to Deepwood Motte with no intention of assisting the Starks in the Great War, much to Jon’s anger.”

      https://gameofthrones.fandom.com/wiki/Robett_Glover#cite_note-5

      ETA I see a few other people noticed this too, I just got the scene wrong

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    76. Jack Bauer 24: I just rewatched the scene and Sansa did not mention Glover at all in that scene. She tells Umber to hurry back, Jon says they need to send a raven to the Night’s Watch, Lyanna does her normal grumpy snarky thing, and Tyrion gives his little speech about banding together or dying.

      We never see again, I think, any of those Crows with Edd in episode 1. Supposedly all Crows came came to Winterfell.

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    77. Che,

      I disagree on Jon. I understand why some people would’ve preferred to see him fighting on the ground, but you have to remember that they acknowledged in the previous episode that they cannot beat the AotD in a stand-up fight.

      That’s why they had set Bran up as bait and why Jon and Dany were sidelined initially, to draw the Night King out. I think people would’ve been similarly frustrated if Jon had just been standing around in the godswood or killing nameless wights in the Winterfell courtyard while Dany was getting her butt kicked by the Night King alone in the air.

      Personally, I think Jon is riding Rhaegal because it may come into play later in the season. He needs to be shown to be Dany’s equal and building a connection with his own dragon.

      And when Jon did get a chance to fight the Night King on the ground, they illustrated what a futile tactic that would have been, since he was specifically frustrated in his attempts to get near him by the crowded nature of the battlefield.

      I thought the expectation of seeing Jon and the Night King having a personal showdown was quite cleverly frustrated, without undermining Jon’s efforts to personally destroy the Night King.

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    78. Miss Stark,

      I didn’t call it bad. I said bottom half of GOT episodes for the site, which I believe it is. And I believe its still in the bottom 5 episodes on RT reviews. So lots of people have legitimate gripes.

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    79. I am pretty entertained by the fact that all of this negative judgement is being passed about “the ending” of the story before we’ve seen the last half of the season. We have no idea yet what the WW threat, and the defeat of the NK, mean to the broader story. Everyone’s assuming that there are no consequences to how this battle went down, that everyone’s going to sweep up the vast piles of corpses and move on and forget about the army of the dead as they focus on Cersei as some “big bad.”

      Cersei is not going to be the final villain. The final villain is going to be the insatiable human appetite for power, and the knee jerk reversion to armed conflict to settle squabbles over power. The conflict between the children of the forest and the first men gave rise to the atrocities of the white walkers, and the conflict over the Iron Throne is going to give rise to more atrocities. It’s entirely possible that we get more explanation from Bran about the origins and motivations (insofar as weapons have motivations) of the ww as the fault lines deepen over who has power where. If Bran is supposed to be memory and history and all of those things that GRRM so clearly values, then there’s also a moral in there about how little attention we actually pay to memory and history, and how we make the same mistakes again and again.

      We also have no idea whether there is some consequence from a magical perspective to the disappearance of the ww. How does this affect the old gods, the weirwoods, etc? No idea if any of this will be answered, but there’s a lot of potential. I think this episode will ultimately have to be judged in light of what follows.

      Plenty of stuff to be explored, plenty of stuff to contextualize the battle, and I’m glad we have time to do it.

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    80. Nick20: She mentions Glover when speaks to Jon alone.

      Thanks. Rewatching that Great Hall, why did Jon say he had a choice to give up his crown or protect the North? Didn’t he voluntarily “bend the knee”?

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    81. This needs to be said. The. Show. Is. Not. Over. There are 3 more super sized episodes left. And twists are going to happen. “Fans” need to relax. If you are this pissed now. Just wait a few more weeks. And as for Jon’s arc. For me it’s not about him defeating the WW. It’s been about discoving who he is and his place in the world. He’s wanted to know about his mother from the very first episode. He’s gonna do more stuff. More sword fights. More moody faces. Chill.

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    82. Ryan,

      Even in real life, existence runs in cycles. As Luke tells us, no one is really gone. The Others came before and they will come again, unless all magic is eliminated from the world which would mean the sacrifice of the dragons, direwolves, Three Eye Raven, Red Priestesses, Old Gods and both Dany and Jon. Regardless, the universe always demands a balance so I do not believe this is the definite end of the Others’ threat.

      If it is, you are completely correct in pointing out that that particular story was for naught. As it is right now, without having the chance to watch the follow up episodes, it seems that it served no purpose other than as a delay tactic to a final showdown against one Cersei Lannister and perhaps the destruction of two magical structures of Westeros – The Wall and Winterfell. So the larger criticism is not who got the kill against the NK but how the story was executed in contrast to how it was built up. The destruction should have spread throughout the kingdoms and even involve part of Essos and the Citadel, as it is only the North paid the price in terms of infrastructure and the rest of Westeros sat there (Targaryen and Vale forces completely excluded of course) as big cowards.

      I want an independent North but if Dany wants to take the other remaining five kingdoms (Iron Islands already negotiated their bit), she is welcomed to go fire and blood on them. Bunch of cowards, they probably deserve someone like Cersei ruling over them.

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    83. Jack Bauer 24,

      My assumption of that statement is an “inferred truth” due to his honor… Dany came to save them of her own choice and then said she would help him fight the NK WITHOUT Jon bending the knee, so he felt compelled to serve her out of honor, without knowing if she would request it of him. But at that point he knew that serving the North was more important, so he WOULD have bent the knee, had it been required of him.

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    84. I enjoyed episode 3, but after my emotions settled, I was left with a feeling of – is this it? If this is over, then it was not that big of a threat or placed in the wrong episode order, or maybe that NK was not thee NK.

      Personally, I would have liked to have seen a better battle strategy, like a sneak attack from behind from a handful of Dothraki firing from trees and kill one of the Generals followed by his army thread to give us some hope and put a small dent in the NKs army; simply put, make bigger dents 🧟‍♀️🧟‍♂️🧟‍♀️ rather than literally chipping one 🧟‍♂️ at a time. Same w Jorah 💔, loved his scene but would have been more badass if he took down another General and his army at another critical point to offer some relief in a hopeless battle; followed by Arya. It was very much onesided, and then suddenly we win. Ha-ha! The end. Yet, still a pleasure to watch.

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    85. Miss Stark,

      Agree – it was a very good episode and certainly had plenty of strong points, but for a GOT episode, it’s not an all time great. And IMDB is just common folks scoring – RT are (mostly) professional op-ed pieces and they have a lower score there.

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    86. I think Bran will die. Remember how weak Jojen got as soon as his mission neared completion? The only reason for the 3ER to exist seems to be the Night King. Without him he has no purpose.

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    87. I just watched this Take time to watch how it was put together, esp Arya last scene. I remembered what all has to go into this the people the props the creativity and labor to make this all come alive, so to speak its incredible. So yeah it might not have played like we might have wanted to, but the story and the show are amazing, and Im even warming up to being ok with this. Still would like info on AOTD, HOBW etc, but without that, its damned good storytelling. Going to watch the episode again with all this in mind and suspect I will come away with a different opinion.

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    88. Ryan:
      Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,
      My “frustration” is that the BIGGEST antagonist which has been touted since Scene 1 breached the Wall 2 episodes ago are now extinct after one real battle and only threatening about 5% of the world’s population – and it was the population which already knew they existed. Yes, they are the biggest antagonist.The Stark words aren’t “Cersei is coming”. They didn’t build a 300 mile wall to keep Cersei out. Cersei can’t raise the dead to fight for her. And without any further plot/explanation to their story, the AOTD and the NK amounted to an 8 season McGuffin.

      My initial reaction was the same. BUT don’t you think it’s even more perfectly bittersweet that way ? Only a handful of Long Night survivors will ever know what really happened. Despite their courage and sacrifice, the Targaryen claim to the throne might still not feel legitimate to the people of Westeros. Cause most of Westeros will never truly know the danger they were in.
      Sure there will be songs. And Sam might write an epic book about Ice and Fire.
      But with the help of southern propaganda, all these stories will pass as mere legends. Just more weird Northern bullshit. (Old Nan material).
      Frustrating ? For sure. It’s terribly cynical actually. But it’s GoT isn’t it ? Who said the actual heroes would be loved, acclaimed and crowned ?

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    89. Jack Bauer 24,

      He gave some amazing performances. Most of them I can’t actually watch on my rewatches, but the ones I can-he just knocked it out of the park.
      So glad Bran thanked him and forgave him.
      Then
      “Theon. Did you hate us the whole time?”
      now
      “Theon. You’re a good man. Thank you.”
      *sob*

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    90. Jack Bauer 24,

      Yes, he did but only after she had sacrificed one of her children to the cause and had placed her life in danger to rescue them. She had earned his respect so he believe she would make a decent monarch. Dany had demanded he bend the knee in exchange for help in previous occasions so when she finally acceded to join the cause, he reciprocated with what she had originally wanted. Had Jon not bent the knee, the issue would have come up at some point after the face off with the Others regardless. She has dragons, the North doesn’t, Jon would have been forced to Thorren Stark his title to save the lives of his people. Jon, always giving up titles and claims without actually knowing what he was giving up. Now he knows and he has to make a number of major decisions. If I were him, I would take a boat to Essos and go find a warm place to live, find a worthy woman and have some children. Arya and Gendry could go visit him from time to time.

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    91. Squirrel:
      I think Bran will die. Remember how weak Jojen got as soon as his mission neared completion? The only reason for the 3ER to exist seems to be the Night King. Without him he has no purpose.

      I wonder where Bran’s arc will go now. I think he still has some things to do.
      According to the show, the 3ER needs to keep living to keep the world’s memories alive. If he dies now then the NK might as well have killed him. He could die if someone else is a new apprentice 3ER. I believe 3ER Max was 1000+ years old? I’m not sure if they said exactly now long 3ER Max lived, but there always has to be a 3ER alive according to the way I understood how the show explained it.

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    92. Melisandre’s Necklace,

      It is a bit long winded to explain if you have no understanding of battle tactics, but i will give it a shot.
      Most of what you say is true, and The Dothraki are not the kind of people to fight behind the wall, and yes they are cavalry. however, that does not mean you just throw them at any enemy. In their normal existence, they, do not have the luxury of formidable infantry to form the spine of their assult and so are forced to do the hard grind themselves, and in the situations where a hard grind is required they would fall back on their horse archery skills to wear the enemy numbers and resolve down. This is a night time battle and dothraki would never choose to fight at night. They would choose to fight of a day time on open lands where their horses could find sure footing. Horses lend a body of men speed and weight, that main advantage is wasted if they are then forced to charge straight on to an on-comming enemy, particularly if they can not see it when they commence the charge. (I doubt that they were even told or understood that their enemy were undead or had giants among them, look at the face of the first dothraki that recognizes what the enemy is). Any battle commander would understand and appreciate the true application of cavalry, put them on the flanks and utilize their speed. Draw the enemy onto the unsullied spears and then hit them from the sides and behind with fast moving cavalry. For a quick reference watch the first sequence from Gladiator. This is how cavalry would typically be used.

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    93. Ryan,

      It’s not a straw man to suggest you’re projecting your expectations onto the show when you’re literally listing your expectations and expressing your frustration that they weren’t met.

      The storytelling makes perfectly reasonable sense. It just hasn’t met your personal expectations. You prove this through your admission that you have no issue with Arya killing the Night King or with the AotD being defeated. Well, that happened. It just didn’t happen when, where or how you wanted it to, apparently.

      There’s nothing wrong with people being disappointed or having misgivings with how things transpired. I’d never argue that the show is flawless. But you’re the one acting like something completely absurd happened, like the Lord of Light himself appearing out of nowhere to win the battle.

      And you, and probably many of those that are losing their minds over this, are still assuming that there’s no reason to any of this. You’re still assuming that the ending will now be all about Cersei and that the events in The North and the fallout from them won’t impact the trajectory of the story.

      But even if Cersei does turn out to be the final hurdle, your frustration with that apparently comes down to the fact that you weren’t really prepared for the possibility that the story would not end how you expected it to. Which is kind of ironic considering this show’s reputation for bucking expectations.

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    94. Tron79,

      I want to know what he was doing when he was white-eyed for the entire battle. There was also like this whole weird staring conversation going on with the NK.
      And why did he think waiting for and saving Jaime was so important? It couldn’t be for this battle. Is it for what is coming?
      And why did he have to tell Jon who he was before the NK came?

      I still have a lot of questions for and about Bran.

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    95. RG:
      Tron79,

      I want to know what he was doing when he was white-eyed for the entire battle. There was also like this whole weird staring conversation going on with the NK.
      And why did he think waiting for and saving Jaime was so important? It couldn’t be for this battle. Is it for what is coming?
      And why did he have to tell Jon who he was before the NK came?

      I still have a lot of questions for and about Bran.

      I thought he was just tracking the NK waiting for him to get to the Godswood.

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    96. Frenchy The Frog,

      Very good points. The fact that most southerners won’t have experienced any of what occurred in The North means it will probably fall into northern folklore, to be mocked and ignored all over again in future; just like all the warnings from the Night’s Watch were at the start of the show. That’s certainly got a bittersweet aspect to it. But the southerners may face a legendary conflict of their own when the action moves down to King’s Landing.

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    97. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man: you’re projecting your expectations onto the show when you’re literally listing your expectations and expressing your frustration that they weren’t met.

      The storytelling makes perfectly reasonable sense. It just hasn’t met your personal expectations.

      There is SO MUCH of this going on this week online within review articles and straight ol’ viewers! I am almost positive that nearly all of the people complaining would be praising the hell out of it if just a couple things were changed; Jon kills NK and one or two more characters died. Of course we’d still have the disappointment that the NK/aotd was dealt with so soon/quickly. That is what it is thought and shouldn’t detract from the quality of what WAS done.

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    98. Squirrel,

      I think he’ll be downloading lots of into to Sam (just like Frodo left Sam the Red Book of Westmarch) before that happens.

      Makes me worry for the Citadel. Qyburn’s revenge?

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    99. I’ve read every comment here.

      Bottom line: D&D should not have written this ep. They had the Night King killed by someone who supposedly snuck up on him with all his henchmen around him. May the gods save us from more of this crap.

      I do hold out some hope for redemption, but not much!

      Other points:
      -Sansa should have asked Tyrion to kill her. He in the end refuses to stab her and leaves the alcove to battle the intruders. Later when he comes back, she’s sunk the knife into her belly herself and is dead.
      -Bran should have “taken over” and autopiloted the blue/WW dragon. That would have been a good culmination of his taking over Hodor, a direwolf, ravens etc.
      -Then Arya should have shown off, fought Theon off, killed Bran and taken his face, replaced him in the chair, and then killed the Night King once he got close. Bran should have been a sacrifice. Then because she killed him or wore his face or both, Ayra changes and becomes the three-eyed raven herself.

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    100. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man: The fact that most southerners won’t have experienced any of what occurred in The North means it will probably fall into northern folklore, to be mocked and ignored all over again in future

      I was thinking about that after watching again last night. Not just that it will be in the future, but right (now) as well. Despite thousands of people dying, everyone in the south is just going to brush it off as no big deal. They didn’t have to deal with it or even see any of it. That is really my only reason for any disappointment in it being finished in the North. While thinking of the invasion for years one imagines the whole of Westeros having to deal with them and in the end knowing firsthand how our heroes saved everyone.

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    101. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:
      Che,

      I disagree on Jon. I understand why some people would’ve preferred to see him fighting on the ground, but you have to remember that they acknowledged in the previous episode that they cannot beat the AotD in a stand-up fight.

      That’s why they had set Bran up as bait and why Jon and Dany were sidelined initially, to draw the Night King out. I think people would’ve been similarly frustrated if Jon had just been standing around in the godswood or killing nameless wights in the Winterfell courtyard while Dany was getting her butt kicked by the Night King alone in the air.

      Personally, I think Jon is riding Rhaegal because it may come into play later in the season. He needs to be shown to be Dany’s equal and building a connection with his own dragon.

      And when Jon did get a chance to fight the Night King on the ground, they illustrated what a futile tactic that would have been, since he was specifically frustrated in his attempts to get near him by the crowded nature of the battlefield.

      I thought the expectation of seeing Jon and the Night King having a personal showdown was quite cleverly frustrated, without undermining Jon’s efforts to personally destroy the Night King.

      While I agree that Jon riding Rhaegal will come in to play later in the story and that is one of the reasons they showed him doing so now, I can’t see how someone with his history, skills and weaponry is better utilised in the air than in the Godswood where the NK was going to appear to take out Bran (in truth, if it weren’t for the fact that it wouldn’t make for good television, it would have made a lot of sense to put all the Valyrian steel weapon-bearers in the Godswood (or to have plans to fall back to the Godswood if the walls were breached), if that was the likely spot for the NK to show up, but that wouldn’t have worked very well in this episode. It just makes so little narrative sense to have one of their greatest assets away from the fight (and one of the few precious Valyrian steel swords) when, as I mentioned, Rhaegal could have done everything he did without a rider and has never needed one before to follow Dany’s orders and follow her into battle.

      If Jon had been in the Godswood, he could have battled WW and tried to take on the Night King, fail, and the Arya stealth-attack still could have worked. It wouldn’t have had the same ‘all is lost’ feeling they achieved and then shocking twist at the end, which would have made for less cinematic TV. As soon as Melisandre told Arya “blue eyes”, I knew she was off to kill the Night King, but they did well to make me mostly forget it in that moment. I knew she was still out there, but I hadn’t seen the twist of her jumping out of nowhere (out of the tree in my head cannon!). It was very satisfying at the time, but almost immediately afterwards, but the more I’ve thought on it, the more I feel it to be a decision taken for spectacular TV rather than honesty to the characters they have developed. Would Jon leave his brother, his sisters, all his friends, his people at their hour of need to ride a dragon that crucially did not require a rider. When Arya asked if dragon fire would work, should they not have had a back up plan when Bran said he did not know if it would. Would it not have made Jon question whether to leave Bran with no one wielding a Valyrian steel weapon around him?

      So many people questioned Jon’s actions during the BOTB, for his riding out to save Rickon and abandoning the plan by going forwards afterwards. Yet that was true to his character, his desire to save his brother, to risk his life in the face of certain death to defeat an enemy. Why wouldn’t he do the same for Bran? Why would he leave Bran unguarded by anyone with a VS weapon if the dragon plan (that could have worked without him) failed? It has been manipulated so the Arya moment could happen, which feels like writing a story backwards and getting characters to act in ways they wouldn’t if you wrote it from their motivations instead.

      And finally, Jon’s efforts were frustrated in that instance because he was in the open battlefield surrounded by thousands of about-to-be-reanimated wights. That wouldn’t have been the case in the Godswood, so it isn’t a comparison that can be made.

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    102. GRRM was always going to end the battle against the Others prior to deciding the game of thrones. He has always said how much he liked the ‘Scouring Of The Shire’ in the LOTR and how he envisioned his books wrapping up in a similar tone. They destroyed the ring of power and defeated the big bad that was Sauron, but Saruman still remained to cause trouble for the heroes.

      I can’t believe people would want to watch a repeat of episode 3 over the course of the rest of the season. It was fatiguing. It wasn’t complex. It was just flat out survival. That’s not as interesting to me.

      The people who are now upset at Cersei being the big bad aren’t showing enough imagination. The main conflict, I believe, will still wind up being between Jon/Starks/Dany. That is the final big twist GRRM told D&D about 6 years ago. IMO. The one that happens near the end.

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    103. Clob: one imagines the whole of Westeros having to deal with them and in the end knowing firsthand how our heroes saved everyone.

      … I do think it would be difficult to do that real well on a tv show though. You’d think that if the NK made it into the south and all of Westeros had dead running around… Well, then this show ends up becoming more like TWD than ASoIaF… I truly don’t believe this is a zombie story at its core.

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    104. Sure we’d love our heroes to be praised and acclaimed. But Jaime and Tyrion both actually already saved King’s Landing (from the Mad King / at Blackwater). How did that work out for them ? What do the songs say about them ?

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    105. Tyrion Pimpslap: I can’t believe people would want to watch a repeat of episode 3 over the course of the rest of the season.

      HA!! I’ve watched it in total three times already plus many more viewings of several specific scenes. 😀

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    106. Clob: There is SO MUCH of this going on this week online within review articles and straight ol’ viewers!I am almost positive that nearly all of the people complaining would be praising the hell out of it if just a couple things were changed; Jon kills NK and one or two more characters died.Of course we’d still have the disappointment that the NK/aotd was dealt with so soon/quickly.That is what it is thought and shouldn’t detract from the quality of what WAS done.

      I think it didn’t even have to be that specific. Just a few references to all the seasons worth of build up might have made the masses happy.
      a few examples:
      If they’d used those Valyrian steel swords they were so focused on for seasons and seasons with some other wielders like Jorah, Brienne or Jaime on WW (then all the gifting of the swords would matter)

      If they’d had Nymeria’s pack show up in the godswood to be a distraction for Arya, to help the ironborn or maybe the warging 3ER (then the direwolves would matter)

      If they made it more obvious via something Mel said like she learned while she was away that Jon and Dany will never get near him but he wasn’t counting on someone swift as a deer and quiet as a shadow etc–just for audience clarity. (then all her false prophecies would at least be quasi redeemed)

      It’s not about personal preference imo, it’s about all the actual dialogue and hints and focus of importance on not just prophecies, but objects and people over several years that was ignored.

      And I’m saying this as someone who loved every Arya scene in the episode-and Sandor of course.

      But if this was the last battle with the WW, then I’d have to say that there were a lot of things left hanging in the wind for no reason.

      Just to be clear it isn’t the outcome I’m unhappy with, its how we got there.

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    107. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:
      Frenchy The Frog,

      Very good points. The fact that most southerners won’t have experienced any of what occurred in The North means it will probably fall into northern folklore, to be mocked and ignored all over again in future; just like all the warnings from the Night’s Watch were at the start of the show. That’s certainly got a bittersweet aspect to it. But the southerners may face a legendary conflict of their own when the action moves down to King’s Landing.

      Right. The North Remembers, but everyone south of the Neck still thinks its all grumkins and snarks. Sigh.

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    108. Mango,

      Lol Davos, Jorah, and Gendry would have kill SIGNIFICANTLY more people than the Night King to be given the throne. Specifically, Gendry is the only one with a single digit percentage even if he had killed the NK.

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    109. Eilan,

      I can feel that, and the rest of the show should be interesting and politics has always been the best aspect. But they hyped up the white walkers, the night king, and specifically this battle all by themselves with every single character it seemed getting a greatest threat ever and we are all doomed monologue. Now obviously, barring an extended (or probably multiple) dialogue drops, you cant really get too far onto the lore between when he was made and this raven here at this point and that is very unfortunate . I say that, because the Night King was basically a smirking troll this episode and got beat the way all of the shows overpowered characters do, arrogance. Without backstory some people, myself included, wouldve preferred a more urgent killer or at least normal paced calculated task master than such a humanly flawed being. I would think even a normal person would have learned to control that after thousands of years and apparently mad attempts at these ravens.

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    110. Tyrion Pimpslap,

      I would counter and say perhaps we are showing an abundance of imagination. Maybe we were expecting Old Nan’s Long Night and are just coming to grips with having witness only a quarter of what we thought the Others and the Long Night were supposed to bring. And I don’t mean longer battles, I just mean, at least for me, I would have like to see the devastation more spread out. Even if it was just a shot of a snowy Riverlands with starving small folk all around.

      The next conflict is also building up where we don’t know who is going to land where. Divided loyalties indeed and I’m looking forward to it. I just wish they hadn’t built up something to such lengths and then decide to limit the destruction and death toll. But it is only an opinion and people are allowed to feel however they feel about what they experienced.

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    111. ShameShameShame,

      Good point, didn’t think about that in that way. On the other hand my boyfriend directly pointed out that the Dothraki charge wasn’t a very smart plan and I was like: whatever dude, it looks beautiful (and terrifying) and sets the right mood. And even though not all battle plans were like topnotch (I think that budget, human capabilities and aesthetic play hereby an important role (but there was also the in-story element that Daenerys did not adhere to it after the Dothraki were killed)), I still think that details like the trench or that the White Walkers were not directly involved in this battle (why risk their lives if you have enough foot soldiers) shows that they still think about these battle elements and want to make it believable enough and logic is not completely off the table. This does of course not mean that I want to shut down discussion or anything (on the contrary)

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    112. After rewatching did anyone else notice it took the NK an awful long time to walk over to Bran? I know he’s slow lol, but that took a bit long.

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    113. Jack Bauer 24,

      They used slow motion to ”highten” the scene. They talk about it in the ”Game revealed” video. On the other hand those dudes were always slow.. look at how many seasons it took them to get here. They had like the inversed version of the jetpack of Littlefinger

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    114. This has been said before, but I think Arya being the one to kill the Night King fits perfectly into the thematic scope of the story. The whole time, Martin has been calling to question the idea of a prophesied hero. Melisandre and Stannis did terrible things because they believed he was Azor Ahai. Jon and Dany were supposed to be the saviors, but as we’ve seen, for all their good qualities they are very flawed and not great leaders. Indeed, all of these wars and the suffering their involve we ultimately caused by Rhaegar’s attempt to fulfill the prophesy of “the prince who was promised”. Maybe Rhaegar and Lyanna loved each other, but the reason he took the extreme actions that caused Robert’s Rebellion and destabilized the kingdom was because he believe that their son (Jon) would save the world. Believing prophesies has caused nothing but suffering to everyone in this story, and in the end, quite appropriately, the prophesy turned out to be wrong!

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    115. Che,

      My take on this https://youtu.be/ZJ1yC3yESLQ video at the 9.47 mark, where Dan says ‘we knew that it had to be valerian steel, and we knew that it had to be at the exact place that the children had inserted the dragonglass dagger’. Was that, that understanding was Both Dan and Dave’s as taken from their few day long meeting with grrm. In other words, that was the recipe for the death of the leader of the white walkers as given to them by grrm.

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    116. crookshanks:
      Jack Bauer 24,

      They used slow motion to ”highten” the scene. They talk about it in the ”Game revealed” video.On the other hand those dudes were always slow.. look at how many seasons it took them to get here. They had like the inversed version of the jetpack of Littlefinger

      😀 Just seemed like the amount of stuff going on in the cut away from the NK scene took longer. The whole Jon/Viserion cat and mouse took as long as it did the NK to walk over to Bran.

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    117. Nick20,

      There’s only three episodes left of an 8 season story, that hardly equates to one third does it. After Sauron was defeated there was still a lot of story which followed.

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    118. Benjamin,

      Jon is a good leader in the books. Better than any of the characters in the entire series, IMO. So I take issue that we were shown that in the books. The show tries to tell us what a good leader he is while not doing a good job of showing us. The same way they tell us how smart Sansa is while not doing a great job of showing it.

      I think people can try and retrofit the story into making it so that all prophecies in the books were wrong. That it was all about Arya all along. But in reality it was a decision made by D&D as they were writing season 7 three years ago. It wasn’t something that was planned from the start. They flat out admit this.

      For all the bashing of prophecies and dreams in the books, they almost always come true in a way that is easily identifiable once the events happen. The Prince Who Was Promised is Jon and/or Dany. The Ghost Of High Heart, who accurately predicted the Red Wedding and Purple Wedding, gave the prophecy that TpwwP would come from Aerys and Rhaella’s bloodline.

      It’s okay to try and convince yourself that all of the intricate work that GRRM did weaving these prophecies throughout the books was all one big fake out, but that simply would not fit what we have been shown so far.

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    119. Jack Bauer 24,

      Sapochnick said in one of the “behind the scenes” that that scene broke a lot of the GoT rules against slo-mo etc.

      Melisandre sauntering out to light the trenches was excruciating though, and that was in real time!

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    120. Ryan,

      Let’s say that the NK won this battle then, killing every main character, would that then make their stories pointless? This storyline was brought to an end, just get over it.

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    121. the unburdened:
      Che,

      My take on this https://youtu.be/ZJ1yC3yESLQ video at the 9.47 mark, where Dan says ‘we knew that it had to be valerian steel, and we knew that it had to be at the exact place that the children had inserted the dragonglass dagger’. Was that, that understanding was Both Dan and Dave’s as taken from their few day long meeting with grrm. In other words, that was the recipe for the death of the leader of the white walkers as given to them by grrm.

      But there is no leader of the white walkers in the books. GRRM is a masterful storyteller, if there were a leader of the white walkers yet to come in the final act of his story (books form), would he not have laid the foundations already? He has stated the Night King is a show creation. He has said the Night’s King from the books is a legend and not the same as the Night King. Who knows (other than him of course) what will happen; it just feels like a stretch to say this is how it will happen in the books as things are right now.

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    122. waa
      Undead Elephant,

      Yeah I mean all she did was fight with everything she had for these people who believe her to be a crazy mad foriegn invader. Not to mention all the POC that died so the nordic white northerners could live. I thought the scene with the Unsullied covering the Northern retreat really spoke volumes about who these people are. I guarantee there will still be people calling Dany and her people savages that dont belong.

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    123. Jack Bauer 24,

      He meant, giving up his crown cemented Daeny’s support, and conversely, holding onto his crown would not cement that same support. So, he made a choice of daeny’s cemented support over the crown.

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    124. It’s not just expectations. It’s the damn story! They butchered the story & Jon’s Character in one go. That was not Arya’s story, point blank. The D & D ADMIT they did it to make a twist from it be predictable (Jon). Not because of foreshadowing or because GRRM told them. Or any of the other reason people are puling out of their ass to justify it. D & D own this epic mess of an episode.

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    125. I was unsure on first watch but I’ve seen it four times now and I feel it’s in my top five episodes of all time. The direction, cinematography is out of this world for TV just for starters.

      Yes I have some minor criticisms but I feel people’s main reason for disliking it stems from the fact it didn’t play out as they wanted or expected. If they can open their minds and just watch it then standalone it’s quite possibly the best ever episode of a television show.

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    126. Tootie:
      I’ve read every comment here.

      Bottom line: D&D should not have written this ep. They had the Night King killed by someone who supposedly snuck up on him with all his henchmen around him. May the gods save us from more of this crap.

      I do hold out some hope for redemption, but not much!

      Other points:
      -Sansa should have asked Tyrion to kill her. He in the end refuses to stab her and leaves the alcove to battle the intruders. Later when he comes back, she’s sunk the knife into her belly herself and is dead.
      -Bran should have “taken over” and autopiloted the blue/WW dragon. That would have been a good culmination of his taking over Hodor, a direwolf, ravens etc.
      -Then Arya should have shown off, fought Theon off, killed Bran and taken his face, replaced him in the chair, and then killed the Night King once he got close. Bran should have been a sacrifice. Then because she killed him or wore his face or both, Ayra changes and becomes the three-eyed raven herself.



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    127. Ryan: Not to mention, we are left with a million unanswered questions…. what made them raise now… why is he so connected to Bran…is the NK a seer… how are Mel and the Lord of Light connected and what does she see…etc. etc. The “great war” lasted all of a few hours and the NK was killed in one second…… if that is the culmination of 8 years of “Winter is Coming” , that is not a “misread of the situation”… that is a complete breakdown in storytelling.

      There really is only big question that was unanswered: and that was “why is the Night King doing this?” What was so important about erasing memory? What is there in this that Jon, Daenerys, etc., should have stopped and thought: “we cannot let him win; but we must address the issue of why he wants to win.”? As it stands, absolutely nothing.

      Martin went on for years and years about how this story was about having the main characters deal with internal conflicts. Well, I didn’t see anything that should have caused anybody any self-conflict insofar as destroying the Night King. (And, no, I do not think that Martin has “something better” in store.)

      For all of Martin’s insistence that this was a rebuttal to Lord of the Rings, in the end, it did not look that much different, and in the end, it comes across as more of a concession than a rebuttal.

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    128. Lara: They butchered the story & Jon’s Character in one go. That was not Arya’s story, point blank. The D & D ADMIT they did it to make a twist from it be predictable (Jon). Not because of foreshadowing or because GRRM told them.

      1. Martin has been going on and on for years that he was going to subvert tropes. So, we get a subverted trope and you are complaining.

      2. It is nearly as much Arya’s story as it is Jon’s. There are 5 primary protagonists, and although Jon & Daenerys are #1 & #2, Arya is basically on par with Tyrion. (This is true for both books & TV series.) This is NOT a single-protagonist story like Harry Potter. Equally important: it is not a story with “heroes” like Lord of the Rings.

      3. Arya being the one to kill the NK was foreshadowed as far back as Season 1.

      4. Martin himself obviously had not decided who was going to do this. He has said for years that he’s known the ending, but he did not know exactly how he was getting there. However, he put Arya on a trajectory from the start that sensibly put her there. He did the same for Jon, Daenerys and Bran [albeit not Tyrion]. Upshot? Martin probably has had different ideas on this part for a while and has been writing in a way as to leave his options open. However, and his is key: SEE POINT 1!

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    129. ShameShameShame,

      So the People of Color didnt die protecting the white retreat? And someone didnt literally post thats what the Unsullied are supposed to do? Just ask an actual person of color what they thought.

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    130. Wimsey,

      I think that is the very reason the books are taking so long. The WW and their undead army are too big of a threat that he has written himself into a corner.

      Haven’t read the books (apart from the first one), but from what I have gathered the WW are featured even less in them.

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    131. Tyrion Pimpslap,

      Jon is not a great leader in the books, he gets himself killed by his own men! I don’t mean that as a criticism of Jon (or Dany either). They both have lots of good qualities, but they’re both young and naive.

      I’ve been involved in the this story a long time, and I never believed that the prophesies were meant to be taken seriously. The whole R + L = J hoopla seemed like the perfect satire on the idea. What difference does it really make? It makes a difference only to the extent that people believe it does. And it doesn’t even have to be Martin “trolling” people. The prophesies are interwoven in the story deeply because the _characters_ take them really seriously. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t bullshit.

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    132. Lara,

      They did not say that they chose aria to be the vanquisher rather than jon to create a twist. They said that jon killing the night king just didn’t feel right. They did not expand on their reasons for why it did not feel right, they kept that reason to themselves. people have assumed that it was to create a twist. But, it just might be that their gut was telling them that it wasn’t what they wanted.

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    133. Wimsey: 1. Martin has been going on and on for years that he was going to subvert tropes.So, we get a subverted trope and you are complaining.

      2. It is nearly as much Arya’s story as it is Jon’s.There are 5 primary protagonists, and although Jon & Daenerys are #1 & #2, Arya is basically on par with Tyrion.(This is true for both books & TV series.)This is NOT a single-protagonist story like Harry Potter.Equally important: it is not a story with “heroes” like Lord of the Rings.

      3. Arya being the one to kill the NK was foreshadowed as far back as Season 1.

      4.Martin himself obviously had not decided who was going to do this.He has said for years that he’s known the ending, but he did not know exactly how he was getting there.However, he put Arya on a trajectory from the start that sensibly put her there.He did the same for Jon, Daenerys and Bran [albeit not Tyrion].Upshot?Martin probably has had different ideas on this part for a while and has been writing in a way as to leave his options open.However, and his is key: SEE POINT 1!

      D&D subverted a trope just to do it with no thought to the story. Of course in the whole, it’s Arya’s story too. I’m meaning this particular part. Arya had absolutely nothing to do with the Night King or the AOTD. That was JON. For literally years.

      Arya was not foreshadowed to do it. Never ever. People are going back and trying to pick pieces & lines to make it fit. Her training was not about preparing for the Night King. Even though because of it, it helps make it plausible that she could do it.

      What about Ice & Fire? What about the Lord of Light bringing Jon back for what? All the build up? So someone could jump out of a tree and it’s over in 2 seconds come on.

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    134. the unburdened:
      Lara,

      They did not say that they chose aria to be the vanquisher rather than jon to create a twist. They said that jon killing the night king just didn’t feel right. They did not expand on their reasons for why it did not feel right, they kept that reason to themselves. people have assumed that it was to create a twist. But, it just might be that their gut was telling them that it wasn’t what they wanted.

      No, they said it was predictable. Even if “it just wasn’t what they wanted”. They still screwed the whole story.

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    135. Hursta1,

      The Unsullied – canonically consisting of Dothraki, people from Lys (white) and Qarth (white), some the same race as their own slavemasters, and other ethnicities Dany doesn’t recognize- did their job. You just presumed they all have the exact ethnicity as Jacob Anderson, the fantastic actor who plays Grey Worm? GRRM never mentions Grey Worm’s race by the way. So you lose on that point.

      Then you go and say all the white soldiers are cowards. Most of them died too, and they weren’t the highly skilled, highly respected elite soldiers the Unsullied were.

      It’s not me with the perception problem.

      Done with you.

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    136. So a big complaint I keep seeing is people saying that the Night King and his army didn’t make a big enough impact on Westeros.
      Did people actually believe something like that was going to happen? What impact could they have on the rest of the world if there was one more battle? Wasn’t the whole deal trying to stop the Night King before he invaded Westeros?

      And for book readers: do you really think George is going to write an entire book about Westeros being thrown into darkness and have the army of the dead march all the way to King’s Landing?
      For God’s sake the man is only going to write two more books and Daenerys hasn’t even invaded Westeros yet and Jon is still dead. Was everybody expecting A Dream of Spring to be about battle after battle against the Others?

      I believe that George will spend a lot of time on wrapping everything up like D&D will in the final three episodes. He won’t end the story with a big battle against the Others and end it like that

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    137. ShameShameShame,

      The Unsullied and Dothraki are all POC on the show. Those POC died protecting people who were literally running away. The same white people running away have described Dany and her people as savages not fit to be on the continent of Westeros. Grey Worm and Missandei literally say they have to leave because the northerners will never accept them. Feel free to refute any of this. You may be done but just remember that Westeros owes its existence in large part to the sacrifice of POC who wont even be able to stay there because of how they are viewed by the white locals.

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    138. The Unsullied are mixed race I thought? Dothraki are more Hispanic which would be classed as white in most countries. Not knocking you trying to offer an alternative slant.

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    139. Nick20,

      If you live long enough and pay attention, it’s not hard to figure out what motivates most people. Now it is true that there are some people who are just perpetual malcontents who complain about everything and are not satisfied with anything they didn’t think of, but the overwhelming majority of the rest of the folks who react as strongly as some are to Arya killing the NK and the NK being dead already, usually have something personal at stake, since in this case it is a dang TV show and the usual suspects of money, security, and sexual relations are not in play, I’d say most of the over the top criticisms and hand wringing/sky is falling type fault findings, the ALL CAPS and so forth are coming from ego, you had some predictions, you voiced them to people, they didn’t come true, and now you look like an horse’s rear end and you don’t like it.

      Anyway, regardless for purposes of our discussion, I accept that none of the above applies to you and you are a well meaning chap who just has some emotional grievances with the show. With that said, the NK is mentioned as a past figure in the books, though I trust if you say Martin has said he’s not bringing him back, then he’s not bringing him back. If that is the case, and the NK is not going to exist in the books, why get your small clothes all in a twist and go all “local man ruins everything” about what happens to some non-book character on the show? I realize Arya will not likely defeat the Others all by her lonesome in the books, but hey, she didn’t in the show either, she just struck the final blow. In my mind, the MVP’s of the whole NK saga are 1. Jon (it was his tireless attempts to save the wildlings; raise awareness and raise the alarm; diplomatic efforts to bring everyone together, not to mention his risking of his neck on numerous occasions that did more to put the Winterfell Alliance in a position to triumph than anyone; 2. Dany (the weapons of war she amassed over the course of the series, most notably the dragons which she thew into the conflict are the only reason Sunday’s episode wasn’t half an hour or less and ended into everyone dead) 3. Bran (his intel and insight were invaluable, most recently knowing that he himself was the only form of bait sure to draw the NK out; 4. Arya (she possessed the exact skill necessary to win this particular encounter); 5. Mel (brought Jon back, which was the linchpin, made major contributions Sunday night).

      Lastly, as to the complaint about it all ending with the NK too fast, I disagree, the plot line has been going on for 8 seasons, there were numerous encounters across that period of time, and there were real world, dollars and cents reasons they couldn’t drag that battle out over the course of the whole final season.

      Anyway, again, not trying to come down too hard on you in particular, it’s just the reaction from a small minority seems horribly out of proportion and misplaced in the context of the great spectacle the show put on Sunday night. If you are a die hard book guy, accept the show for what it is, I am sure there are plenty of people on westeros.org you can commiserate with. Also, I hope you get your last 2 books, I truly day, I myself will also be glad one day (hopefully) to read them.

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    140. Jon Snowed,

      They are all people of color on the show. And how about you go ask a Hispanic immigrant if they are just looked at as white people in the US. Why is it so hard to just accept reality?

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    141. orange,

      True, he’s not in the books as a current living character to date, however that makes it all the more silly how some are getting their small clothes so bunched up over who kills this non-book character.

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    142. orange,

      True, he’s not in the books as a current living character to date, however that makes it all the more silly how some are getting their small clothes so bunched up over who kills this non-book character.

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    143. Now that the AotD are defeated, do you think Tormund follows Jon into battle with KL? What’s left for his arc?

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    144. the unburdened:
      Lara,

      They did not say that they chose aria to be the vanquisher rather than jon to create a twist. They said that jon killing the night king just didn’t feel right. They did not expand on their reasons for why it did not feel right, they kept that reason to themselves. people have assumed that it was to create a twist. But, it just might be that their gut was telling them that it wasn’t what they wanted.

      In the Inside the Episode they say having Jon, who is the hero, do it would be too “predictable” (their words). If they were trying to avoid the predictable, that meant they wanted it to be unpredictable; another way of saying that is calling it a twist is it not?

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    145. Melisandre’s Necklace: Calvary charges. It’s how they do. The best calvary fighters in the world. They deserved a shot to wipe out the dead.

      Cavalry also are pretty much useless for defense: really, the only defense for which they were good is rearguard actions to allow retreats, and that’s basically attack, fall back, attack again, fall back.

      Against a normal army, you could try to put the cavalry off to some side and have them try to flank the charging enemy. However, that assumes a normal infantry that can be flanked: the wights would have just attacked the oncoming horseman with equal ferocity. Moreover, if the Dothraki had been close enough to do that effectively, then a big chunk of the wights would have just charged at them straight away: and that would have amounted in the same ending.

      And, lest you think that they were really dumb for doing this, just remember: even after WWI (in which armies tried cavalry charges into machine gun fire repeatedly for the first two years!), many military tacticians firmly held that WWI was an anomaly, and that cavalry would be just as important as it had always been in any future conflicts! The idea that men on horses could not overcome anything just was not an acceptable one to many men. (Their horses never weighed in on the issue.)

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    146. Wimsey: 1. Martin has been going on and on for years that he was going to subvert tropes.So, we get a subverted trope and you are complaining.

      2. It is nearly as much Arya’s story as it is Jon’s.There are 5 primary protagonists, and although Jon & Daenerys are #1 & #2, Arya is basically on par with Tyrion.(This is true for both books & TV series.)This is NOT a single-protagonist story like Harry Potter.Equally important: it is not a story with “heroes” like Lord of the Rings.

      3. Arya being the one to kill the NK was foreshadowed as far back as Season 1.

      4.Martin himself obviously had not decided who was going to do this.He has said for years that he’s known the ending, but he did not know exactly how he was getting there.However, he put Arya on a trajectory from the start that sensibly put her there.He did the same for Jon, Daenerys and Bran [albeit not Tyrion].Upshot?Martin probably has had different ideas on this part for a while and has been writing in a way as to leave his options open.However, and his is key: SEE POINT 1!

      Firstly, the epic saga that is ASOIAF is definitely a shared story between all the primary protagonists; I agree. However, the part of the story that saw its climax on Sunday night, narratively, has been Jon’s story. Subverting tropes is one thing, subverting the narrative is another. Narratively speaking, from a books standpoint, it makes little sense, but in the universe of the show, it works, to a degree. Would seeing Jon duel the NK and defeat him been a worthy end to the NK in the scope of what GOT is? No, I don’t think it would. Removing Jon from the action almost altogether for Arya to single handedly kill the NK may work as a surprise resolution, but narratively, even in the show, in my opinion, stands on shaky ground. You mention foreshadowing? To foreshadow the writers must know that an event is going to occur. If they decide five years after season 1 that Arya is going to be the one to kill the NK, then by default, anything in season 1 can’t have been genuine foreshadowing, just a line of dialogue that has been retrofitted to act as foreshadowing. I realllllly wish D&D hadn’t revealed when and why they chose Arya for this role; had they not revealed that it was a recent development (in the show’s run) and them choosing her because “Jon would be too predictable” and they knew it needed to be a Valyrian steel weapon, then I personally would have found far fewer problems with the way this has unfolded.

      It was still an epic episode of the show and had moments of visceral fear, deep emotion and beyond beautiful shots. And in the end, having Arya do it works fine.

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    147. Che
      Looking at the Battle of the Bastards – he maneuvered his army into a battle when they were outmanned, then proceeded to totally blow his own plan when faced with an entirely predictable provocation.
      If you were a survivor of BoB, planning for the fight against the AotD, you’d be enthusiastically telling him how vital his dragonriding skills are.

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    148. Benjamin,

      That had nothing to do with his leadership abilities. Or I should say not everything to do with it. It was the biggest conflict in Jon’s story arc. Love vs duty. His love of Arya and family interfered with his duty to the Night’s Watch. That coupled with a bunch of unyielding xenophobic mutineers was why he was killed. I’m not saying he is perfect. None of them are. But I’m challenged to choose anyone out of the main characters who is better suited for leadership in the books. Many would say Stannis, but he is too unyielding and doesn’t inspire loyalty. Cersei is a joke. No need to mention her. Sansa hasn’t been remotely close to being in position to lead in the books. Dany is a conqueror. She’s not bad, though.

      My point being, Jon’s role in the books has been about growing into a leader. Mormont chose him as his steward for that reason. He led the defense of the Wall through insurmountable odds. He brought the wildlings into the fold as allies. He was elected Lord Commander. He gives Stannis sage political and military advice.

      He has actually done very little sword fighting in the books. So this vision the show has always had of him as the warrior doesn’t really match what’s in the books.

      You don’t like all of the prophecies in the books, that’s fine. That still doesn’t mean they are all bogus.

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    149. Hursta1,

      You’re right. The Dothraki led the charge and the Unsullied protected the retreat.
      I have a hard time justifying the charge of the Dothraki – others have pointed out how they could have been used far more effectively. (Not to mention less suicidally.) But I think having the Unsullied protect the retreat made all kinds of sense – they were by far the most disciplined soldiers there. You could count on them not to break. They were heroic.
      From a viewer’s perspective though, it’s small comfort to think there might be good military reasons or good narrative reasons when the effect is to eliminate most of the PoC characters. (Narrative reasons: with her own army decimated, look how much more dependant on the North Dany will be in her quest for the throne).
      I think in retrospect, the problem was that we had far too few named Unsullied and Dothraki characters. If we knew more than just Grey Worm and Qhono, then there would have been better representation for PoC through the whole show, and the Dothraki and Unsullied parts of the battle would have been about fulfilling their own narratives.
      It’s a very interesting challenge to diversify racial representation in fiction. The Expanse does it brilliantly – if you haven’t seen it, check it out.

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    150. BlueRoses:
      Ryan,

      I completely agree. It was a huge letdown, I can’t believe it’s over so soon, after all that build up.I’m so disappointed that the Night King never made it to King’s Landing, I so wanted to see him put the fear of the gods into Cersei!

      I liked the episode as a standalone episode. The battle sequences were great. The human drama was great. The twist of Arya killing the NK was great (that’s my girl!!!). However, I agree that Cersei and the rest of Westeros not encountering the AOTD was a big disappointment for me. I can’t help but begrudge how the villains on this show gets sooo lucky all the time. Anyway, who knows? Maybe there’s another twist coming? But if not, I’ll still continue to watch until the end of the series for sure. I won’t miss it for anything.

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    151. Brandon:
      How do any of you know Martin is not going to have Arya kill the NK?

      I have a feeling Arya will kill the NK in the books (if the book series ever gets completed). I read somewhere GRRM was consulted by D&D regarding all the major plots this season so I’d be very surprised if the end of the NK and AOTD would deviate too much from what we saw on the show (i.e., have someone else kill the NK).

      Also, it’s likely that the AOTD will be defeated by the middle of the last book, not the end. GRRM once mentioned he’d like to explore what happens to the people once the fight with the evil forces ended, something he thought was missing in LOTR.

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    152. Tyrion Pimpslap:
      Benjamin,

      My point being, Jon’s role in the books has been about growing into a leader. Mormont chose him as his steward for that reason. He led the defense of the Wall through insurmountable odds. He brought the wildlings into the fold as allies. He was elected Lord Commander. He gives Stannis sage political and military advice.

      He has actually done very little sword fighting in the books. So this vision the show has always had of him as the warrior doesn’t really match what’s in the books.

      I agree. I love Jon Snow (and Kit Harington for that matter) but I sorely miss this part (the smart/intelligent leader part) of the character on the show.

      You may also add to this how he’s able to get the respect and trust from Mance Rayder, the leader of the Free Folk. There’s just something in him that makes other leaders (Mormont, Rayder, Stannis, etc.) respect and trust him.

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    153. HelloThere:
      The Bastard

      why wouldn’t we end with Cersei Lannister as the final villain?She has been the villain since season 1.

      Seriously, Cersei has always scared me a h*ll of a lot more than the NK, who just seemed cartoonish to me.

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    154. Brandon,

      I agree with much of your thinking. I had been waiting to respond until I had a chance to see the episode a second time but, well, that didn’t happen.

      I can understand why some fans were disappointed by this episode, but I think D&D are doing brillantly given that they do not have the source material that made seasons 1-4 so great. I personally loved the episode (despite my own technical issues with my TV). Following on your comments:

      1. Jon is STILL the hero of the story. Think about what would have happened had Jon not rallied the North and sought out Daenerys: 1) No Unsullied, which played a critical part in the defense of Winterfell; 2) No Dragons; 3) No dragonglass, which was critical to efforts in ep3; 4) Importantly, No Arya — remember, she only came back to Winterfell because of Jon’s presence there. I think it is fair to say that the AotD would be rolling towards the Neck if it weren’t for Jon Snow, and the fact that he did not personally do in the NK does not detract from what he has accomplished. I was thinking and looking forward to a confrontation between AeJon and NK but in reality, Jon had done what a leader does — give his followers the best chance possible for success. To paraphrase Tyrion from 8×2, we have Jon Snow to thank for survival. So looking at seasons 6-8 as a whole, I think Aejon’s arc holds together (so far).

      2. The less than long night and the WW’s absence from the battle is understandable. From a storytelling perspective, a long night might have been (and probably will be) able to be covered well in literary form, but I don’t think it would have worked well in a visual format. I suppose we could have spent time with Edd, Beric and Tormund riding through fierce storms, finding frozen homesteads and northerners, or perhaps some other device, but I think it would have been difficult to pull off and subject to other types of criticism. And I actually thought it made sense for the WW’s to not appear until the end of the battle: if the NK is really a greenseer and knew about the mountain of dragonglass being forged into weapons, he would have used the dead not the WW’s as a weapon of choice (just as he did with Jon) because his army would have been much more vulnerable if the WW’s had been in the front lines.

      3. Arya as hero makes sense. I won’t go over all the points that other made, but Arya killing the NK does seem like a natural outgrowth of what she has experienced. And i knew that she was destined to do something important to the end of the story from the moment that Bran gave her the Catspaw dagger, letting it go somewhat reluctantly (altho I had no idea it would be killing the NK). I do wonder what is next for her — killing Cersei would be a repeat of narrative, which seems unlikely.

      And now we have a series of unanswered questions that I think will make the next three episodes very interesting: Resolution of the Daenerys/Aejon conundrum; will he north follow Daenerys now that the Northern threat is dealt with; what does Cersei “have planned for the Dragon Queen”; what is the role of the Vale and the Riverlands in the coming conflict for KL; What will Bronn do; How will the Golden Company impact the conflict; will Euron and Cersei be faithful to each other (politically) or stab each other in the back; and how will many of the relationships we have been exposed to turn out (Daenerys/Jon; Arya/Gendry; Jaime/Brienne; and now Tyrion/Sansa). Finally, we still don’t know what will happen with Chekhov’s hanging gun relating to Bran’s ability to effect the past — is that a forgotten piece of narrative or a key to the end of the story? Plenty of good material to sort through in the final three episodes, if we are willing to embrace it.

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    155. Nick20:

      People wanted to see White Walkers go further south and have an impact on the Seven Kingdoms as a whole.

      Do you speak for all the people now? This “people” is perfectly happy to see the end of the NK and his AOTD. They were defeated at Winterfell (winter fell there) as they should be. Ned would be proud.

      On to the good stuff!

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    156. And it would be nice if you stopped harassing me for having different opinions than you do.

      You will not shut the f*ck up about your unfulfilled expectations and yet you claim you’re being harrassed? We are the ones suffering, believe me.

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    157. I don’t think there’s any one character who would make a great leader on their own – they all have some pretty big blind spots and flaws. I think there are characters with better leadership qualities than others but I think each candidate would need a sort of council around them to make up for what they lack.

      I remember reading somewhere that dragons are more effective with riders but I can’t remember where I saw this. It was fairly recently and I remember reading something like that before but it totally dropped out of my mind (I’m probably mixing sources again) – is there anybody here who read/remembered something like that? Is this a book-only detail? Or my imagination?

      On the show, there was apparently a cut line from Jon where he told Daenerys, “It was almost like he knew where I wanted to go.” Would this indicate Rhaegal, despite Jon’s inexperience with dragon riding, had more direction with Jon riding him? ie. Searching for the Night King, Jon’s goal to safeguard Bran from the Night King, and Jon/Rhaegar attacking the Night King/Viserion duo who are spewing flames over Winterfell. Maybe I’m so wrong there, I want this to have good reasoning behind it because this is the story we got.

      But I’m definitely struggling with the showrunner’s explanation for this twist (“We hope to kind of avoid the expected and Jon Snow has always been the hero, the one who’s the savior, but it just didn’t seem right to us for this for this moment”). If this wasn’t Jon’s moment to be the savior – what is? What will be? In battles prior, Jon has always been in the thick of it, from the first, fighting to the end against overwhelming odds with somebody else doing the surprise 11th hour save. Plus, the Night King was Jon and Bran’s main foe for their story. Arya got to take care of names on her list, wipe out the Freys. Sansa got to take out Ramsay while her, Bran, and Arya all took out Littlefinger together. Cersei got to take out her enemies (RIP Margaery ;;). Brienne got to take out Stannis. Even in Davos vs. Melisandre, Davos was there to see Melisandre die. There’s a sort of narrative deflation in how the whole Night King defeat went down for me. Jon doesn’t have to be the one to take out the Night King, but I wish he had more of a role – if he was there, with Arya, with Bran, with Theon even. If Jon had a role in taking out the guy who has occupied so much of his brain space for so long.

      There’s part of me that can see the realism in Arya taking out the Night King alone: Arya is a silent trained assassin and has been training at it for years – if this were a real battle, she’d probably be the exact one to take out a guy like the Night King, who already knows Jon is a threat, Dany is a threat, and is avoiding them because of this. Plus, not everybody gets to take out their main adversary, no matter who they are or what they’ve been through. Still, there is a sense that it feels narratively underwhelming to me for reasons Che has said.

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    158. Che: To try and help alleviate the bafflement you feel as a show-only fan to the dissatisfaction among a large amount of fans who may have read the books, I highlighted some parts of your thoughts to try to highlight some reasons why.

      Your response was balls on accurate in basically every way. It was the sidelining of Jon and leaving him to shout in impotent frustration that had me howling (and most of us who were pissed off) in disgust.

      So yes, most book readers who are dissatisfied are dissatisfied for precisely all of the reasons you state. Prophecies rendered meaningless. Jon — his was the Song of Ice and Fire left without meaning.

      In my dreams, Drogon would pounce on Viserion in the courtyard, their tails and wings would lash out and smash the gate to the godswood and bury most of the WW on the other side of it. Jon would rush to the godswood, confront and duel the NK for a minute or so, Longclaw would become increasingly, and more ominously frosty as the battle raged on, and finally, Longclaw would.. break. They would lock eyes, Jon would be on one knee, head sagging in an almost scary callback to Ned – defeated. The NK would draw back to strike and kill Jon…

      and then — only then — would Arya stab him. It’s not that she killed him – it’s how she did it. And what Jon didn’t do.

      That would have made me a FAR happier fan.

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    159. A Knight of Several Lunchtimes:
      Thanks Samantha and Petra, that was an entertaining listen as usual.

      I loved the episode and did find it fulfilling.Yes, I had to do a bit of backfilling in my head to make sense of it all after it finished but it worked for me.A few more major character deaths would have been better and I did expect the night to be longer, the Night King to win this battle (with many characters somehow escaping) but ultimately that he would lose the war somewhere further south.Yes it was blurey and I got confused as to who was who and which dragon was which but I felt that was a deliberate decision and added to the whole “fog of war” element

      I like that Arya killed the Night King and made nonsense of the prophesies.There are many and only a few come true.There was plenty of foreshadowing for Arya in retrospect (God of Death mentioned throughout her story by different characters, Mel’s “eyes” speech, etc and all of that training).

      My point in writing is that I wonder if the strength of negative feeling among (it seems mostly) book fans about this change would be the same if this twist came from GRRM?If he hadfinished the books and had written that Arya defeats the Night King, would fans still feel so cheated?

      As a show only fan, I don’t feel cheated, and I’m baffled by the anger at all of this.

      It wouldn’t surprise me at all if the idea did come from GRRM. Arya sneaking through the Godswood in the treetops and leaping out of the heart tree to kill a god seems like something that could have been foreshadowed back in book 2, when she was in Harrenhal:

      Jaqen still owed her one death. In Old Nan’s stories about men who were given magic wishes by a grumkin, you had to be especially careful with the third wish, because it was the last. Chiswyck and Weese hadn’t been very important. The last death has to count, Arya told herself every night when she whispered her names. But now she wondered if that was truly the reason she had hesitated. So long as she could kill with a whisper, Arya need not be afraid of anyone . . . but once she used up the last death, she would only be a mouse again.

      With Pinkeye awake, she dared not go back to her bed. Not knowing where else to hide, she made for the godswood. She liked the sharp smell of the pines and sentinels, the feel of grass and dirt between her toes, and the sound the wind made in the leaves. A slow little stream meandered through the wood, and there was one spot where it had eaten the ground away beneath a deadfall.

      There, beneath rotting wood and twisted splintered branches, she found her hidden sword.

      Gendry was too stubborn to make one for her, so she had made her own by breaking the bristles off a broom. Her blade was much too light and had no proper grip, but she liked the sharp jagged splintery end. Whenever she had a free hour she stole away to work at the drills Syrio had taught her, moving barefoot over the fallen leaves, slashing at branches and whacking down leaves. Sometimes she even climbed the trees and danced among the upper branches, her toes gripping the limbs as she moved back and forth, teetering a little less every day as her balance returned to her. Night was the best time; no one ever bothered her at night.

      Arya climbed. Up in the kingdom of the leaves, she unsheathed and for a time forgot them all, Ser Amory and the Mummers and her father’s men alike, losing herself in the feel of rough wood beneath the soles of her feet and the swish of sword through air. A broken branch became Joffrey. She struck at it until it fell away. The queen and Ser Ilyn and Ser Meryn and the Hound were only leaves, but she killed them all as well, slashing them to wet green ribbons. When her arm grew weary, she sat with her legs over a high limb to catch her breath in the cool dark air, listening to the squeak of bats as they hunted. Through the leafy canopy she could see the bone-white branches of the heart tree. It looks just like the one in Winterfell from here. If only it had been . . . then when she climbed down she would have been home again, and maybe find her father sitting under the weirwood where he always sat.

      Shoving her sword through her belt, she slipped down branch to branch until she was back on the ground. The light of the moon painted the limbs of the weirwood silvery white as she made her way toward it, but the five-pointed red leaves turned black by night. Arya stared at the face carved into its trunk. It was a terrible face, its mouth twisted, its eyes flaring and full of hate. Is that what a god looked like? Could gods be hurt, the same as people?

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    160. The episode was stupendous! I loved Arya’s role, it all made perfect sense to me.

      Once they got beyond the books, the evolution of the show became more mature, less teenage-boy fantasy, than with GRRM’s direction. I’m sure I’ll enjoy whatever (if ever) he writes, but D&D nailed this so far, for me. It’s a different art form, and it’s a stronger story. GRRM did a fantastic job of creating a world but this is fabulous, too.

      The only possible disappointment will be if anyone sits on the IT and just continues the same old same old. I would be lukewarm about that ending, about the feudal patriarchy continuing undisturbed. But probably not mad, why bother getting mad? It’s fiction, after all. Excellent fiction!

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    161. Che: Why wouldn’t he do the same for Bran? Why would he leave Bran unguarded by anyone with a VS weapon if the dragon plan (that could have worked without him) failed? It has been manipulated so the Arya moment could happen, which feels like writing a story backwards and getting characters to act in ways they wouldn’t if you wrote it from their motivations instead.

      And that is the difference between GRRM and D&D. I am hardly the first person to notice this.

      GRRM writes about characters doing logical things, based upon their own motivations. Those motivations lead to what we, as readers (and viewers) see as unexpected results. We see Ned killed, the Red Wedding. We see Jon spare Ygritte – and Ygritte shoot Jon. The officers of the NW kill Jon. All of these are GRRM moments.

      With D&D we get the Sept of Baelor blowing up, Jon fucking up the plan for the BotB, and that pile of bullshittery that lead to the loss of Viserion (and the downfall of the Wall). And yes, The Long Night that was literally reverse-engineered all so the dramatic twist of Arya killing NK could occur. All for a twist.

      One version, GRRM, is atypical writing that is a true game changer in books and entertainment. Given that he does so as a “gardener” and not an outline writer, no wonder it takes him so damned long. (His constant revisions must be maddening!)

      The other version, D&D, is just run-of-the-mill standard Hollywood writing. They have proven themselves adept at adapting. At writing original material? Nowhere near to the same degree. And it shows.

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    162. Fiery Heart,

      Sauron was defeated after a monumental struggle that took place over a period of time. He wasn’t defeated in the first engagement using a plot device that is basically in every B-level western and war movie made.

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    163. Steel_Wind:

      They have proven themselves adept at adapting. At writing original material? Nowhere near to the same degree. And it shows.

      While i agree with this statement to a great extent, it leads me to be more sympathetic with D&D’s plight rather than raking them over the coals. Bringing such a sprawling epic to a conclusion in the face of a committed fan base without source material is a thankless task. I can’t imagine that they thought they would be this far ahead of the books in 2019 when they first pitched to GRRM. I try to enjoy the show for what it is (and it is still a lot) rather than what it could have been had D&D had more source material to work with.

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    164. RG,

      I never got why he was not up for awards; I hated his character, but always thought he was an outstanding actor Watching him being Reek (I skipped those torture scenes tho) made me feel so sorry for him, he reminded me of every domestic violence victim Ive worked with. . Then as he came back to himself with Sansa, you could see him struggle to find himself. His last action was just perfect. I don’t know what he will be doing after this show but I do plan to follow him and watch anything he is in,

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    165. Jack Bauer 24,

      Hey quit trying to turn this huge argument by talking about something else in the show! 🙂

      Actually it might be cool for Thurmund and jon to do a road trip around the continent . The whole place has been ravaged. The survivors of this battle can use their energies to encourage other to rebuild communities; Not worrying about the iron throne, but each other,.

      Anyone give a thought what happened in the crypt ? that moment with Tyrion and Sansa was priceless. I think we will see more of them.

      It will be interesting what these next two episodes do (as this one was Act 1 in a 3 Act play) I really suggest that everyone calm down and see what is going to happen. Your idea of what was going to happen still mnight, in a way you haven’t imagined yet

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    166. Che,

      Sorry to come back this (Jon riding Rhaegal in battle) so late.

      I’m not sure how dragon riding works on the show. Has it been explained at some point? Can’t remember. It could be different from the books.

      However, if it’s the same as in the books, there was a very god reason Jon had to ride Rhaegal. Dragons form a unique bond with their riders. Once a dragon has been ridden by someone, it will not accept any other rider (master) until that rider dies. So, when Jon rode Rhaegal, they formed this mystical bond and Rhaegal became Jon’s dragon, that is, it wouldn’t have obeyed Dany. Like I said, this could be different in the show.

      In the books so far, Dany doesn’t seem to be aware of much of the dragonlore, she can’t control Rhaegal or Viserion and only barely Drogon. This could change, of course, in future books, but so far the canon from everything GRRM has written is one rider = one dragon.

      One other point. Dany (perhaps books and particularly the show) seems unaware that you have to have Valyrian dragonlord blood (so, in practice, Targaryen blood, because all other bloodlines were wiped out in the Doom) to ride a dragon.

      So her dragondate dare to Jon to ride Rhaegal was a bit of an ooops! moment. She inadvertently gave away her other remaining dragon! Jon gave her the North, she gave him a dragon!

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    167. Nick20: Helm’s Deep was a battle between men, elves, and orcs. It was part of the War of the Ring. The enemy was actively attacking the world of men.

      Until Season 8 however, the WW were stuck beyond the Wall. The Great War had not begun yet, and there were no actual battles between the armies of Westeros and the WW. That only happened in this last episode. This is not a difficult concept to understand.

      People wanted to see White Walkers go further south and have an impact on the Seven Kingdoms as a whole.

      Some people, I for one didn’t. You really can’t make sweeping statements and speak for others. I think you’ve made your point on this board and of course there are other fans who see things your way. Many don’t.

      Yes there was one battle but the living clashed with the dead many times in the show over the whole series. The battle in Ep3 was the last. The politics and intricacies and interactions of the feuding families of Westeros are what the show is really about….life not death which is all the NK stood for.

      There are a number of issues I have with Ep3 which frustrated me but they were far outweighed by the positives and I’m enjoying the series still, and the online discussion. Ep 3 ticked all the boxes in so many ways that mattered far more than the odd mis step.

      Endless negativity depresses me and I enjoy this board (although I read far more than I post) for its positivity, reasonableness and genuine enjoyment of and appreciation of arguably the best show on TV.

      I hope you enjoyed some of what you saw which took so much work and skill to create.

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    168. talvikorppi:
      Che,

      Sorry to come back this (Jon riding Rhaegal in battle) so late.

      I’m not sure how dragon riding works on the show. Has it been explained at some point? Can’t remember. It could be different from the books.

      However, if it’s the same as in the books, there was a very god reason Jon had to ride Rhaegal. Dragons form a unique bond with their riders. Once a dragon has been ridden by someone, it will not accept any other rider (master) until that rider dies. So, when Jon rode Rhaegal, they formed this mystical bond and Rhaegal became Jon’s dragon, that is, it wouldn’t have obeyed Dany. Like I said, this could be different in the show.

      In the books so far, Dany doesn’t seem to be aware of much of the dragonlore, she can’t control Rhaegal or Viserion and only barely Drogon. This could change, of course, in future books, but so far the canon from everything GRRM has written is one rider = one dragon.

      One other point. Dany (perhaps books and particularly the show) seems unaware that you have to have Valyrian dragonlord blood (so, in practice, Targaryen blood, because all other bloodlines were wiped out in the Doom) to ride a dragon.

      So her dragondate dare to Jon to ride Rhaegal was a bit of an ooops! moment. She inadvertently gave away her other remaining dragon! Jon gave her the North, she gave him a dragon!

      I agree with all of this! In the show, we have been told by D&D in the Inside the Episode piece for episode 1 that only Targaryens can ride dragons. So it is likely going to be a big deal in terms of proving who Jon is (maybe Sam, who she wouldn’t trust, or some other learned figure will point this out to her next episode when she discusses Jon’s claim).

      I also hope that it means Rhaegal is now bonded with Jon, as it will make for an interesting remainder of the season. If it indeed comes to Jon VS Dany (and I sort of hope it doesn’t), then they will be equally powered – both lost most of their armies and now both has a dragon. At the moment the story could go in so many directions.

      If Jon was needed ride Rhageal to bond with him for later plot purposes, my quibble would be that he already rode Rhaegal in episode 1 and must have done so a few times more prior to episode 3, because he was pretty masterful at clinging on despite Rhaegal tumbling through the air and engaging in a dragon fight, I can’t imagine he would have managed to cling on without a bit more practice. In the books, dragons only let people ride them if they are going to bond with them (or they don’t let them near), so in episode 1, we saw Jon achieve that.

      It was spectacular to watch and I’m sure it serves lots of purposes in forwarding the story (propelling Jon and Dany’s relationship/similarities, bonding with Rhaegal etc.), but to me it still doesn’t feel right. The whole plan that is. I’m baffled by the choice to leave Bran without a VS bodyguard. Why not Arya from the outset? Yes, Theon and his men fought bravely, but if the NK wasn’t defeated by dragons, then what was the plan? It feels like the outcome to have Bran alone in that wood and to be saved by the surprise Arya ending, manipulated characters into behaving in ways that seemed at odds with who they are. It’s not just Jon, but Arya too. Would she truly leave her brother without an esteemed warrior at his side (as valiantly as Theon fought, he is not one of the best warriors in the story)? I find it all a bit unbelievable. And feels like backwards writing. They needed Bran to be alone after Theon’s death for Arya’s victory to feel as shocking and satisfying as it was, they probably didn’t want to sacrifice a VS bearing warrior to do so, they didn’t want Jon to be the one to kill/fight the NK, so they made the characters do something that stretches the realms of believability – leave him with no one but some regularly armed Iron Born. This is Bran, Arya and Jon’s brother, they wouldn’t stay with him to protect him when they know the NK is coming for him and they know dragon fire may not stop him?

      This turned into a longer reply than I intended!! Sorry!

      I have now rewatched the episode and enjoyed it much more because I wasn’t sat on the edge of my seat the whole time thinking everyone was about to die. It was a spectacular episode and I enjoyed it very much. It makes me feel a bit frustrated, but over the days that have passed, I’ve come to terms with it. It still doesn’t make sense to me, but I love this show and I love D&D (and all the cast and crew) for bringing this wonder to our screens.

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    169. The criticism of Sansa not fighting was unwarranted. She and Tyrion did fight, the scene just got cut. However, when she took her knife out and they looked at one another and then Tyrion took a breath….that’s what they were headed out to do – sneak up behind wights and kill them.

      https://www.purewow.com/news/game-of-thrones-battle-of-winterfell-sansa-tyrion-scene-cut?utm_source=vayner&utm_campaign=audience_testing&utm_medium=cpc

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    170. Cara Schulz,

      I really hope those 2 get back together again. the unification of house lannister and house stark would go such a long way to mending most of the rifts within the realm. And sanza could do with someone who would for once be receptive to her needs between the sheets. From what I hear, Tyrion is excellent at finding what makes women purr, maybe not as good as pod, but then pod does not come with a house to back him. I imagine that he is considerably better at looking after his bed partner than ramsey. That aside, Probably what Sanza needs as much as anything is someone who stimulates her intellectually, and enjoys playing the game as much as she. the two fit imo.

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    171. Che,

      Yes, I meant Jon bonded with Rhaegal in Ep1, during the dragondate joyride. However, it seems that Dany was unaware that this would happen – would she willingly have given over control of her other remaining dragon? Furthermore, we haven’t seen any reaction to this bonding from Dany. Is she aware of it? So it ends up a bit of a head-scratcher anyway. 😀

      feels like backwards writing.

      Agree with this. D&D seem to have some tendency to decide on a surprise GOTCHA moment and write backwards from that. The whole Sansa-Arya-Bran-Littlefinger storyline from S7 is the most blatant example, IMO.

      I felt somewhat disappointed and underwhelmed after my first watch of Ep3, but liked it a lot more on my second and third watches. I’m a bit two minds about Arya killing the Night King (mostly book stuff) but I’m OK with it, even kind of like it (Arya, who’s for so long been an instrument of death now defeating death type of thing.) The one thing I still don’t like was the execution, the suprise leap out of nowhere GOTCHA moment because I don’t like surprise GOTCHA moments in general.

      As soon as Mel said “… and blue eyes” I thought, oh, is this going where I think it is..? and was momentarily annoyed (oh god, not this super-ninja-assassin-warrior-princess stuff, what about Jon?) but then thought, well, she is an assassin, she just showed all that stealth in the library… The problem I have is that we didn’t see stealth from her, we saw invisibility. I realise other people have no problem at all with that leap out of nowhere, and that’s fine.

      As to Jon… I think it was actually quite brilliant to make him feel so helpless, so powerless, so frustrated. I think Brienne said something like “There’s nothing so hateful as failing to protect the ones you love” (talking about Renly to Cat). Or maybe Cersei said it about her children. Anyway, it’s an idea that’s been floating around – ties in with Arya’s story, too. Ned’s execution, Red Wedding etc.

      And while the threat of the Others, Night King, AOTD has been a HUGE part of Jon’s story, it all began with his identity, his parentage. Now we know – and he and Dany know – that he’s the legitimate son of Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen. What is the importance of that to the overall story? Just to end the threat from the Others? Or maybe something even beyond that? A reconcilliator? A rebuilder? He’s already shown skill in bringing disparate groups and peoples together for the common good.

      There are plenty of hints in the books of him being a king, and he’s shown leadership qualities and skills. Arguably less so in the show, a lot of show-only watchers think he’s a good guy, heroic but a bit dumb. 🙂

      I don’t want the rest of the season to be about smirking Cersei and leering Euron, and I’m sure it won’t. I’m sure the’s going to be some twists and turns. It won’t be straigh-up Jon & Dany & all our favourites against Cersei & Euron. For one thing, Dany and Jon haven’t had time to resolve any of their relationship and the attendant politics that just got hugely more complex right before the dead came knocking at their door.

      I don’t think Dany’s going to turn into a mad queen (we already have one of those in Cersei, two would be overkill). But the R+L=J reveal cannot just be brushed aside, it should shake Dany to her core, she’s built her identity on being the rightful queen since mid-S1. How will she handle the situation?

      Plus there are other factors in play, mostly Sansa, Tyrion, even Varys, Jaime and so on.

      Oops, sorry, seem to have gone on and on. 🙂

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    172. Che,

      Jon and his VS sword were guarding Bran, not sure where logic stretching comes in. In fact, Jon was so adamant that Bran needed to be guarded (even before the NK showed up or the castle walls were assailed) that he sat his dragon on the wall and sat out a lot of the battle, where he could have made a real difference and possibly saved thousands of lives. To me it seems like they went to considerable lengths to ensure Bran was adequately guarded.

      The reason he ended up on his own at the end wasn’t the result of awry planning by Jon, Dany or their generals or as result of backward writing, it was a function of the plot of the episode: the NK didn’t proceed to the Godswood until having dealt with Jon, Dany and the entire army of the living. At that point, anyone there with Bran would have been overwhelmed and killed, whether bearer of a VS or not. There were too many WW there. If Arya hadn’t had the element of surprise and had been in that situation, she would have been killed too. That would seem pretty poor planning from Jon to put two of his “siblings” in that situation.

      In fact, didn’t they have a full discussion about who should be there with Bran and who should not and where Bran should be in the previous episode. It all made sense to me then, during and after the battle. It was fully explained in story terms and I think makes complete sense.

      The most logic straining aspect of where the VS swords were for me is that Dany doesn’t have one, given that she is expected to take on the NK and that her and Drogon are physically separable beings.

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    173. Hursta1,

      The Unsullied were people of all possible colors: if you haven’t noticed, you haven’t been paying attention. And it wasn’t about colour, it was about the status: they were slaves-mankurts put through an absolutely gutwrecking treatment and each of them killed a baby to beome a true Unsulied (instead of taking own life). In other words they were robots, not humans, only Grey Worm was starting to rediscover humanity with Missandei. Others had no human weekness – no fear – simply because they didn’t care whether they would live or die or be wightified or whatever.

      And the Dothraki were just rapists and slavers, who thoyght of themselves and their fighting skills way too well. If you want to boost them as compelling representatives of the POC, my condolences to the POC – if I were a POC, I would preferred to remain unrepresented rather than having representatives like that.

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    174. talvikorppi:
      Che,

      Yes, I meant Jon bonded with Rhaegal in Ep1, during the dragondate joyride. However, it seems that Dany was unaware that this would happen – would she willingly have given over control of her other remaining dragon? Furthermore, we haven’t seen any reaction to this bonding from Dany. Is she aware of it? So it ends up a bit of a head-scratcher anyway. 😀

      Agree with this. D&D seem to have some tendency to decide on a surprise GOTCHA moment and write backwards from that. The whole Sansa-Arya-Bran-Littlefinger storyline from S7 is the most blatant example, IMO.

      I felt somewhat disappointed and underwhelmed after my first watch of Ep3, but liked it a lot more on my second and third watches. I’m a bit two minds about Arya killing the Night King (mostly book stuff) but I’m OK with it, even kind of like it (Arya, who’s for so long been an instrument of death now defeating death type of thing.) The one thing I still don’t like was the execution, the suprise leap out of nowhere GOTCHA moment because I don’t like surprise GOTCHA moments in general.

      As soon as Mel said “… and blue eyes” I thought, oh, is this going where I think it is..? and was momentarily annoyed (oh god, not this super-ninja-assassin-warrior-princess stuff, what about Jon?) but then thought, well, she is an assassin, she just showed all that stealth in the library… The problem I have is that we didn’t see stealth from her, we saw invisibility. I realise other people have no problem at all with that leap out of nowhere, and that’s fine.

      As to Jon… I think it was actually quite brilliant to make him feel so helpless, so powerless, so frustrated. I think Brienne said something like “There’s nothing so hateful as failing to protect the ones you love” (talking about Renly to Cat). Or maybe Cersei said it about her children. Anyway, it’s an idea that’s been floating around – ties in with Arya’s story, too. Ned’s execution, Red Wedding etc.

      And while the threat of the Others, Night King, AOTD has been a HUGE part of Jon’s story, it all began with his identity, his parentage. Now we know – and he and Dany know – that he’s the legitimate son of Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen. What is the importance of that to the overall story? Just to end the threat from the Others? Or maybe something even beyond that? A reconcilliator? A rebuilder? He’s already shown skill in bringing disparate groups and peoples together for the common good.

      There are plenty of hints in the books of him being a king, and he’s shown leadership qualities and skills. Arguably less so in the show, a lot of show-only watchers think he’s a good guy, heroic but a bit dumb. 🙂

      I don’t want the rest of the season to be about smirking Cersei and leering Euron, and I’m sure it won’t. I’m sure the’s going to be some twists and turns. It won’t be straigh-up Jon & Dany & all our favourites against Cersei & Euron. For one thing, Dany and Jon haven’t had time to resolve any of their relationship and the attendant politics that just got hugely more complex right before the dead came knocking at their door.

      I don’t think Dany’s going to turn into a mad queen (we already have one of those in Cersei, two would be overkill). But the R+L=J reveal cannot just be brushed aside, it should shake Dany to her core, she’s built her identity on being the rightful queen since mid-S1. How will she handle the situation?

      Plus there are other factors in play, mostly Sansa, Tyrion, even Varys, Jaime and so on.

      Oops, sorry, seem to have gone on and on. 🙂

      Please do go on! I agreed with everything you said! Pre-episode 3, I thought Jon might sit on the throne at the end, but now I am no longer sure. It feels like the rug is being pulled from under our feet in terms of our expectations and what we feel the plot/narrative has been pointing to.

      However, there is the fact that Jon is a hugely popular character and if he isn’t given the satisfying kill-the-NK moment, maybe there is something truly great awaiting him later in the show – Jon the Rebuilder, a second Jaeherys the Conciliator, I like the idea of that (but it’s probably too sweet for the bittersweet ending they have warned us about).

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    175. Aurelius:
      Che,

      Jon and his VS sword were guarding Bran, not sure where logic stretching comes in. In fact, Jon was so adamant that Bran needed to be guarded (even before the NK showed up or the castle walls were assailed) that he sat his dragon on the wall and sat out a lot of the battle, where he could have made a real difference and possibly saved thousands of lives. To me it seems like they went to considerable lengths to ensure Bran was adequately guarded.

      The reason he ended up on his own at the end wasn’t the result of awry planning by Jon, Dany or their generals or as result of backward writing, it was a function of the plot of the episode: the NK didn’t proceed to the Godswood until having dealt with Jon, Dany and the entire army of the living. At that point, anyone there with Bran would have been overwhelmed and killed, whether bearer of a VS or not. There were too many WW there. If Arya hadn’t had the element of surprise and had been in that situation, she would have been killed too. That would seem pretty poor planning from Jon to put two of his “siblings” in that situation.

      In fact, didn’t they have a full discussion about who should be there with Bran and who should not and where Bran should be in the previous episode.It all made sense to me then, during and after the battle. It was fully explained in story terms and I think makes complete sense.

      The most logic straining aspect of where the VS swords were for me is that Dany doesn’t have one, given that she is expected to take on the NK and that her and Drogon are physically separable beings.

      Jon was never meant to sit on that wall and wait for the NK. Their plan was to wait for him to show up. He tried to stop Dany from flying off from their lofty position away from the battle (and Bran) because the NK hadn’t arrived yet. If their plan had been to stay beside the Godswood with the dragons to guard Bran, why were they waiting on that hill and why did Jon try to stop Dany from leaving until the NK arrived? They hadn’t anticipated the storm, so Jon waiting (for a brief time, not the majority of the battle by any means) near the Godswood was a change from their plans. He hadn’t intended to wait there.

      During the planning stage, it struck me as a foolish decision not to have a Valyrian steel weapon bearer guarding Bran alongside Theon and also, to have the best fighters guarding Bran should the NK get through the dragon fire (that they crucially didn’t know would work). It seemed a more stylistic redemptive choice for Theon and a necessary choice to have Bran be left alone without losing any main VS carrying characters, than one that made sense strategically. They know the NK will come for Bran, they know they will have a chance to defeat him, but instead of filling that Godswood with their few best fighters with the best weapons as a back up for if the dragon fire doesn’t work, they left him with only a few men who weren’t kin to the Starks (beyond Theon’s connection). Would Arya, Sansa and Jon trust their brother’s life to be saved by iron born soldiers? Theon, yes, but the rest? People they don’t know? Sansa could have asked Brienne to defend him, Arya (being enormously loyal to her family) surely would have offered to protect him before allowing Theon to do it? It seems to have come from an outcome based trajectory that the writers needed rather than anything that made strategic sense.

      Saying that had Arya not been there others would have been killed is supposing that Jon had foreknowledge of Arya saving the day. Their best chance at engaging the night king, should the dragon fire fail, was in that Godswood. It is illogical to say that having skilled warriors in the Godswood would only serve to endanger them and end up with them being killed because everyone in that battle was planning to be killed fighting in this battle. Arya could have been waiting to then use her stealth from the offset could she not? Why leave it up to chance? If the dragon fire failed what was the plan? That Theon would kill the NK?

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    176. RG: Right. The North Remembers, but everyone south of the Neck still thinks its all grumkins and snarks. Sigh.

      It IS rather maddening to think this! (Look I know it’s fiction but damn I want the northern threat thrown in the southern faces!)

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    177. Che,

      In the last two years, the dedicated fan base has remained engaged and have evolved their own stories and narratives on how the story will end. I think these narratives have heavily relied on the last few episodes on S7. They have not properly weighed the scope of the entire story.

      Some dominant narratives on the internet have come to be accepted about certain characters and their fate. It also means that many persons with different expectations about the series have left the conversation and kept their expectations to themselves.

      For example, the fan theories have undervalued Sansa and the Lannister brothers because of some “leaks” and other troublemakers on the internet that have “killed” these characters at various points. With other characters, the fan conversations have even gone on to deliver and name babies.

      All these things are still possible. But now that the Episodes are here, many fans are emotionally committed to stories they imagined and agreed with other fans and are now finding out that their fantasies may just be that.

      Let us see how it goes, half of the season is to come.

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    178. Queen of Nothing: It IS rather maddening to think this! (Look I know it’s fiction but damn I want the northern threat thrown in the southern faces!)

      There are several people (including important people) from the south present – Jaime, Tyrion, Brienne, Davos, Pod, Hound, Gendry – are all southerners. If they survive, they each have the potential to be influential in future thinking in the south.

      In S1, remember that Jaime made a comment to Jon about white walkers. (Not that he believed in them, well, neither did Jon.) So they were not completely forgotten among the kingsguard.

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    179. Che,

      I’d like to point out that Theon and the Ironborn had the weapons to kill wights and White Walkers (NK’s leutenants). Fire arrows for the wights and dragonglass for wights and WWs. It’s ambiguous whether the Night King could’ve been killed with dragonglass or only Valyrian steel – remember, Arya’s dagger had dragonglass in the hilt, Sam read it in a book.

      But I agree, it feels like a bit of backwards writing to give Theon a good sendoff and get to the Arya surprise moment.

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    180. Mango:
      Che,

      In the last two years, the dedicated fan base has remained engaged and have evolved their own stories and narratives on how the story will end. I think these narratives have heavily relied on the last few episodes on S7.They have not properly weighedthe scope of the entire story.

      Some dominant narratives on the internet have come to be accepted about certain characters and their fate.It also means that many persons with different expectations about the series have left the conversation and kept their hopes/expectation to themselves.

      For example, the fan theories have undervalued Sansa and the Lannister brothers because of some “leaks” and other troublemakers on the internet that have “killed” these characters at various points.With other characters, the fan conversations have even gone on to deliver and name babies.

      All these things are still possible.But now that the Episodes are here, many fans are emotionally committed to stories they imagined and agreed with other fans and are now finding out that their fantasies may just be that.

      Let us see how it goes, half of the season is to come.

      Indeed.

      Form a personal perspective, I’m not upset with my theories not being realised, I had few – I thought the NK might make it out of episode 3 alive but in retreat with his army gone and I thought that Jon was likely to be king at the end. My personal complaints about what just transpired has nothing to do with theories being quashed; my complaints are similar to those that many have had in the past with big events (Beyond the Wall, BOTB, Arya getting stabbed and the waif fight – none of which I minded) – I just don’t think it was written terribly well and I personally have problems with the choices characters made in this episode. It’s no big deal. I still love the show and am wondering what will happen.

      My comment about the rug being pulled out from under our feet comes from D&D stating they didn’t want to do something because it was predictable. Things are predictable because the story has built them up – so that means I am now expecting many more unpredictable things that haven’t been signposted by the story so far.

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    181. Tyrion Pimpslap:
      GRRM was always going to end the battle against the Others prior to deciding the game of thrones. He has always said how much he liked the ‘Scouring Of The Shire’ in the LOTR and how he envisioned his books wrapping up in a similar tone. They destroyed the ring of power and defeated the big bad that was Sauron, but Saruman still remained to cause trouble for the heroes.

      I can’t believe people would want to watch a repeat of episode 3 over the course of the rest of the season. It was fatiguing. It wasn’t complex. It was just flat out survival. That’s not as interesting to me.

      The people who are now upset at Cersei being the big bad aren’t showing enough imagination. The main conflict, I believe, will still wind up being between Jon/Starks/Dany. That is the final big twist GRRM told D&D about 6 years ago. IMO. The one that happens near the end.

      YES to everything you just said! Thank you Tyrion Pimpslap!

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    182. Che: Indeed.

      Form a personal perspective, I’m not upset with my theories not being realised, I had few – I thought the NK might make it out of episode 3 alive but in retreat with his army gone and I thought that Jon was likely to be king at the end. My personal complaints about what just transpired has nothing to do with theories being quashed; my complaints are similar to those that many have had in the past with big events (Beyond the Wall, BOTB, Arya getting stabbed and the waif fight – none of which I minded) – I just don’t think it was written terribly well and I personally have problems with the choices characters made in this episode. It’s no big deal. I still love the show and am wondering what will happen.

      My comment about the rug being pulled out from under our feet comes from D&D stating they didn’t want to do something because it was predictable. Things are predictable because the story has built them up – so that means I am now expecting many more unpredictable things that haven’t been signposted by the story so far.

      To kill them yes, but did they know how dragonglass faired against their weapons which shattered all except Valyrian steel? Who knows, we never saw it, but they didn’t know that either and you’d think they wouldn’t take the risk. To quote Sansa, I know nothing about battles, but it still struck me as a little silly to leave your key asset, who you know the self-destruct-button-NK is going to seek out, with only iron born soldiers and Theon guarding him. Cinematically, I appreciated the moment when Arya saves the day; logically, it gives me a headache.

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    183. Che:

      … maybe there is something truly great awaiting him later in the show – Jon the Rebuilder, a second Jaeherys the Conciliator, I like the idea of that (but it’s probably too sweet for the bittersweet ending they have warned us about).

      Yeah, I know. 😀

      I’m not fully subscribed to the idea of Jon becoming King of the Seven Kingdoms and ruling happily ever after. What about Dany? Maybe R+L=J was about first bringing people together to fight the AOTD and THEN propelling Dany’s story forward, in maybe an unexpected way?

      I don’t know, and I’m just exploring different alternatives. I don’t want to lock myself down with just one theory because it’ll probably turn out to be wrong anyway, haha.

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    184. Queen of Nothing,

      This. So much this.

      Our heroes who defeated the AOTD, thus prevented the annihilation of all humankind, will not be celebrated in the south. They’ll just think “So the uncouth Northeners and that dragon girl defeated some Wildlings up north. Calling them grumpkins and snarks, haha. Who cares?”

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    185. talvikorppi,

      Isn’t the most commonly speculated place the Others will be defeated in the books the Trident or God’s Eye? Both of those places are in the Riverlands. So the AOTD wouldn’t make it to the Crownlands,Reach,Stormlands, or Dorne.

      For the purposes of the show, does it make that much of a difference that they were defeated at Winterfell and not in the Riverlands? Who or what of consequence is located between Winterfell and the Riverlands?

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    186. Che,

      I really wish D&D had not said that. You are right that several bits of the story have not worked well. Surviving that stabbing by Waif was ludicrous.

      This is how I saw it – the books have no night king and so D&D has some discretion on how this “show creation” died.

      There is quite a lot in Arya’s story that makes this assassination make sense. Of all the killings Arya has done, it is this one that makes the most sense given all her training with death etc. Hound showing where the heart is etc.. what Mel said to her years ago. The pointy end. Beric’s role in protecting her and that she did meet him many years ago. Syrio , what do you say to death? Actually Arya has had so many markers in her arc for this confrontation with death.

      Jon is still a hero. He is the man of the nightwatch that raised the alarm and made everyone come. He diverted Daenerys etc. I love Jon but he may not be king material in the final analysis. And even if he does become king, his killing the NK midseason would make a superhero and kill any suspense for the next 3 episodes.

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    187. Mango,

      You are right of course. To be more specific, it would be fun to see Cersei and Qyburn have to run hide and try and fight an onslaught of undead. (I know, sour grapes, but who know that door may still be open in the next few episodes!)

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    188. In addition to my previous comment: Many fan fantasies decided that Arya’s role was to do a facial switcheroo and kill Cersei.

      Well sure. But she can also assassinate NK.

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    189. Such a nice, calm comment!

      I agree with you. Plus, there is no NK in the books, so why not accept that D&D can write it this way? It fits the characters very well. It was a thrilling, stupendous episode!

      Apart from Breaking Bad, this is the best series ever!

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    190. The goat is staked out to attract the tiger. To capture such a wily tiger, they couldn’t have too strong of a defense. Just enough of a defense for the NK to underestimate, be misdirected, and lured in.

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    191. Queen of Nothing:
      Mango,

      You are right of course. To be more specific, it would be fun to see Cersei and Qyburn have to run hide and try and fight an onslaught of undead. (I know, sour grapes, but who know that door may still be open in the next few episodes!)

      I would also enjoy that! Lol, wipe that smirk off her face.

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    192. Lady MarMar,

      For the show, it does fit well for Arya’s skill set to be able to sneak up and kill the NK. My only qualm is, in this visual medium, and with the simplified version of the Others being narrowed down to one leader, who if killed, would destroy them all, the person who killed him would be the one to defeat the darkness and bring the dawn. Most viewers don’t care that Jon brought all of these disparate forces together. They care about the one who killed the NK and won the war. To many, Jon was a failure, as has been the case many times before in the show.

      Jon is the hero(straight from D&D’s mouth). Yet he has never been given the hero’s triumph that Dany and Arya have had numerous times. And if he winds up dying in the end, which is probably the most likely scenario, they took what would have been his heroic moment away in favor of shock factor.

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    193. Mango:

      For example, the fan theories have undervalued Sansa and the Lannister brothers because of some “leaks” and other troublemakers on the internet that have “killed” these characters at various points.With other characters, the fan conversations have even gone on to deliver and name babies.

      Let us see how it goes, half of the season is to come.

      Sansa is sure to have some role to play in the rest of the season. We’ve been told (though not necessarily been shown, I blame inconsitent and faulty writing) that she’s a clever, smart political operator. Same with Tyrion. I hope we get something interesting from these characters.

      As to the other Lannister brother… I had a Braimegasm when he knighted her. The consummation, the way they looked at each other as if they were the only people in the world… Until bloody Tormund (old gods bless him, I love that Wildling!) started clapping and Tyrion with his big mouth began hailing her and ruined that moment, haha! Not that I begrudge Brienne that general acclaim, she’s the most deserving knight in the Seven Kingdoms. It just cut short that wonderful, spiritual moment Jaime and Brienne had, damn it! 😀

      Anyway, about Jaime (and everybody here probably knows by now that he’s my absolute favourite character). He and Brienne will marry and go live in Tarth (she’s the heir) and their first child will be called Selwyn after Brienne’s father and the second Joanna after Jaime’s mother…

      OK, maybe not. 😀

      I think Jaime’s story is so intertwined with Cersei that it will somehow end with Cersei. Valonqar? Cersei being the death of him either directly or indirectly (Bronn with a crossbow and a grudge with this particular Lannister for not paying his debts and not delivering him a castle?) Jaime jinxed it in S5, “die in the arms of the woman he loves”. Brienne? Or Cersei (uuugh!)?

      Jaime promised to fight for the living. He just did. Now what?

      My fear is that he’ll backslide and return to Cersei. The show has emphasised their mutual love, and it’s one of my gripes. In the books, ever since his roadtrip with Brienne, we’ve been shown Jaime gradually seeing Cersei for what she is (a selfish, power-hungry, manipulative bitch, and volatile and stupid and cruel to boot) and falling out of love with her. He could still backslide in the books. If not for Cersei, then for Myrcella and Tommen, who’re both still alive in the books, though maybe not for long.

      TBF, show-Cersei is a lot smarter and more sympathetic (well, up to a point) than book-Cersei, and I do think D&D did right to make Cersei more than the cartoon villain she’s in the books. Unfortunately, it’s been somewhat at the expense of Jaime’s character and story. Oh well. It won’t end well for Jaime, book or show. But he could still have some role to play, politically or personally.

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    194. Che: Please do go on! I agreed with everything you said! Pre-episode 3, I thought Jon might sit on the throne at the end, but now I am no longer sure. It feels like the rug is being pulled from under our feet in terms of our expectations and what we feel the plot/narrative has been pointing to.

      However, there is the fact that Jon is a hugely popular character and if he isn’t given the satisfying kill-the-NK moment, maybe there is something truly great awaiting him later in the show – Jon the Rebuilder, a second Jaeherys the Conciliator, I like the idea of that (but it’s probably too sweet for the bittersweet ending they have warned us about).

      I still wish he’d at least been in the fight (still reimagining a tower of joy type scenario with Arya as Howland), but yeah, I’m at the point where I’m wondering where a character like Jon’s actually goes from here.
      He’s a good, honest, honorable man who is always willing to fight for the people he loves, and he’s been fighting forever.
      What kept him going after dying was getting Winterfell back for Sansa (and potentially saving Rickon, which was a bust) and then saving the living from WW. And he is the reason they all came together and they were prepared, I know, but…

      He’s similar to Ned in that he’s not good at or a fan of political game play. He’s not a fan of violence when there is another answer.
      And he’s now surrounded by 3 women who are a little of both. 2 who he respects and loves and the other is Cersei.

      I would have loved his name to have been Jaehaerys. I’d always expected that instead of Aegon tbh. And I’d love him to follow in those footsteps as conciliator. But now, yeah, I have absolutely no clue where his story goes from here in a way that stays true to this character.

      Mini rant: But after all this he deserves at least one good turn, doesn’t he? Cat was his stepmother, he believed he was a bastard and never knew who his mother was, his first girlfriend shot him full of arrows, he was killed by his “brothers”, his sister lied to him about their fighting forces even though he agreed to help her get back Winterfell, he was made king but his sister undermined him in front of everyone, he went to get a queen’s help and was quasi taken captive, he went on a dangerous mission for another queen that ended up being pointless. Then he fell in love and bent the knee to Dany, which caused more conflict, all to keep all these whingy people alive. And now his battle is over before he even got to draw his sword on the enemy, and his girlfriend’s battle is on the horizon.
      The man has not had an easy time. The fact that he’s still such a good guy in spite of that makes me root for him. Though at this point I’m almost rooting for him to retire with his direwolf and a dragon, somewhere warm and battle-free. 🙂

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    195. Lady MarMar,

      Yes, because Jon is such a poster child for the patriarchy. The one who gave up his crown and kneeled to a woman. The one who was subservient to Sansa before being chosen as KITN. Yes, he benefited from the patriarchy when he was chosen as KITN, but that’s hardly a mark against the character. He’s also the only one that has any experience as a democratically elected leader.

      People love this series for many different reasons. A large portion does because of the strong female characters, and some hope that all of the females wind up in all of the positions of power, with none of the males having any happy endings. That may wind up being the case, but I don’t believe the point of George’s story was that all men are evil and incompetent leaders, and must be overthrown. I also don’t find it believable that Westeros would change so quickly from a feudal society to a democracy. But if it did, the 3 females who would be likely to be on the throne(Dany,Cersei, and Sansa) would all be less likely to change that system than the guy(Jon).

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    196. Tyrion Pimpslap:

      Isn’t the most commonly speculated place the Others will be defeated in the books the Trident or God’s Eye? Both of those places are in the Riverlands. So the AOTD wouldn’t make it to the Crownlands,Reach,Stormlands, or Dorne.

      For the purposes of the show, does it make that much of a difference that they were defeated at Winterfell and not in the Riverlands? Who or what of consequence is located between Winterfell and the Riverlands?

      Book-Dany had a vision that seemed to indicate the Trident, IIRC. But then book-Jon had a dream/vision that seemed to indicate the Wall. Go figure.

      Personally, I just would’ve wanted Cersei to see and feel at least some of the real threat. I realise it was pretty unworkable in the show, so I’m not too hung up about it.

      I love the show (with its flaws) and I love the books (with their flaws), and I try to keep them separate though my book knowledge naturally informs what I think about events/characters in the show.

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    197. talvikorppi,

      As you know, I expect Jaime to survive. I expect Jaime to thrive.

      I am content if he settles in a beach house on Tarth.

      I am however happy to be the unicorn crackpot that expects him to be King Jaime. Yeah, I am allowed my quirks!

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    198. talvikorppi,

      I’m still hoping Jaime and Brienne stay together. He just fought an army of the dead at her side. They had each other’s backs and he’s never had anyone he could trust like that in his life. Especially not Cersei.
      Tyrion said he always knew who Cersei was and he loved her anyway. Well he knows who Brienne is too. What he has to decide, now that the dead are no longer a danger, is who he is going to be now.

      And yeah, I really hope he doesn’t backslide and make a joke of his character arc, because it looks like Cersei is moving on just fine without him. She’s finally with her evil soul mates ie Euron, Qyburn and the Mountain.

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    199. talvikorppi,

      Jaime has been falling for Brienne for years. He has known for a while that there is something deep there. But he was in a long marriage and he tried to keep to his commitments to his sister and children. Nothing wrong with that. Many married people that fall in love with another person sometimes just hang tight and make their marriage work and focus on their commitment.

      It is only now that he can allow himself to fully love Brienne and maybe see what they could make of it. Of course, think of the barriers – as far he knows there is a baby coming. What will Brienne think when he tells her? If he gets with Brienne, can they ever be safe as long as Cersei is queen?

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    200. Lady MarMar:
      I really hope Jon dies, that they end the patriarchy, and start holding elections.

      You cannot just end one social order and replace it with another one overnight (see: Dany, Meereen). Going from a feudal, patriarchical social order to elective democracy is a HUGE leap. For one thing, most of the population in Westeros is uneducated and illiterate. They’re just fodder to any populist that plays on their grievances and fears with sweet promises (see: High Sparrow).

      Anyhoo, I don’t understand how Jon dying would end the patriarchy and bring about elective democracy.

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    201. Tyrion Pimpslap:
      Lady MarMar,

      Yes, because Jon is such a poster child for the patriarchy. The one who gave up his crown and kneeled to a woman. The one who was subservient to Sansa before being chosen as KITN. Yes, he benefited from the patriarchy when he was chosen as KITN, but that’s hardly a mark against the character. He’s also the only one that has any experience as a democratically elected leader.

      But if it did, the 3 females who would be likely to be on the throne(Dany,Cersei, and Sansa) would all be less likely to change that system than the guy(Jon).

      Agree.
      Jon is definitely a feminist. And equality and fairness has been a continuing theme throughout his story.
      It is known.

        Quote  Reply

    202. RG,

      Jaime is Mr I love.

      Jaime should have told Tyrion – I love and forgave you even after you killed father. Cersei is terrible but you made us orphans!
      In that family, only Tywin gave love to Jaime (to the extent Tywin could). Tyrion and Cersei are takers, Jaime is a giver. In a sort of manner, Jaime perhaps took the role of Joanna as the emotional center of that family after she died.

        Quote  Reply

    203. Mango:
      talvikorppi,

      It is only now that he can allow himself to fully love Brienne and maybe see what they could make of it.Of course, think of the barriers – as far he knows there is a baby coming. What will Brienne think when he tells her? If he gets with Brienne, can they ever be safe as long as Cersei is queen?

      My biggest fear now that we’re back on Cersei time is that she’ll get a hold of Brienne. We know what she does to women she doesn’t like. Ellaria and Shame Nun come to mind.
      And the people who read the books know what she’s already done to someone who might have married Jaime…
      She better leave Brienne alone.

        Quote  Reply

    204. Mango,

      Absolutely. Perfect description. And as soon as he’s allowed to think for himself and away from Cersei’s dysfunction and his father’s manipulation, he’s an amazing character.

        Quote  Reply

    205. Lady MarMar:
      I really hope Jon dies, that they end the patriarchy, and start holding elections.

      I can understand the motivation for people to want this show to end in democracy, coming from our 21st century perspective, but what I can’t see is how Westeros would implement a democracy.

      Communication is by raven between castles and towns (or by horseback presumably though we haven’t seen it – and word of mouth) – and most small folk are never party to it. Most of them are illiterate (“I’ve never met a stone mason who could read.”). They currently have a feudal system where individual lords rule over ‘their’ small folk, but with no nation-wide public servants who might oversee a vote to ensure it would be fair. In this world, how could a democracy work? Small folk would not be able to read any literature by candidates. The candidates themselves would have to spend years travelling to each town to do campaign drives/speeches to the small folk. There would be no one to implement the vote (no public servants) and to ensure it’s being done fairly.

      More realistic is a ruling council perhaps, with long tenures, but it’s probably not realistic to imagine the small folk voting on its members. The closest thing to democracy in Westeros’ history was the Great Council that Jaeherys Targaryen convened a hundred years after the conquest, where 1000 lords voted on who would become the heir after the obvious choices had died. That alone took half a year apparently. This world isn’t ready for democracy yet, but we might see a small step in that direction.

      GRRM has signalled in interviews before that there may be a throne though. So I personally think there will be a monarch (with a more democratically elected council – or an elected Hand).

        Quote  Reply

    206. Mango:

      In S1, remember that Jaime made a comment to Jon about white walkers. (Not that he believed in them, well, neither did Jon.) So they were not completely forgotten among the kingsguard.

      I wanted come back to this. It was a show-only scene, Jaime grabbing Jon’s hand with his… krhm… right hand. You know, his “evil” hand.

      I think the scene was put there to establish some connection between the two because they were going to have some connection in later seasons. (In the books, Jaime seems to have some (subconscious) guilt about failing to protect Rhaegar’s children.)

      Jaime was being a douche about grumpkins and snarks like just about every southerner, including Tyrion, who became friends with Jon. But the important point for me was Jaime sarcastically congratulating Jon for joining the Night’s Watch, “it’s only for life.”

      Jaime joined a similar military order for life at a similar age. Back then, he was a bit naive and idealistic, like Jon at that moment. There’s a definite parallel, though not perfect. Because Cersei. But Jon broke his oaths with Ygritte, so some parallel there.

      Anyway, it served to show Jaime was pretty disillusioned with the King’s Guard and knightly vows in general. He had some sympathy for Jon, who was about to take similar vows under similar, naive idealistic ideas. He was being a total douche about it, though.

        Quote  Reply

    207. Tyrion Pimpslap:
      Lady MarMar,

      Jon is the hero(straight from D&D’s mouth). Yet he has never been given the hero’s triumph that Dany and Arya have had numerous times. And if he winds up dying in the end, which is probably the most likely scenario, they took what would have been his heroic moment away in favor of shock factor.

      A rather reductive interpretation of Jon’s role so far. His contributions to the overall story include, but are not limited to:

      (1) forming an alliance with the Wildlings, which was instrumental to both saving the Free Folk from extinction and mounting the successful campaign against the Boltons;

      (2) liberating Winterfell and the North together with Sansa, which in turn made it possible to start preparations for the defense against White Walkers;

      (3) convincing Daenerys of the true nature of the threat and managing to secure tens of thousands of additional troops and a couple of flying dinosaurs to help with the war effort.

      Yes, he didn’t kill the Night King. So what?

        Quote  Reply

    208. talvikorppi,

      Yes, I agree.

      It is interesting that they decided that it was necessary that these two meet early and put that scene in.

      Jon was about to be sworn to the protection of the realms on men from external threats to stability.
      Jaime was sworn (and disillusioned) to the protection of the realms of men from internal threats to stability.

        Quote  Reply

    209. RG:


      Mini rant: But after all this he deserves at least one good turn, doesn’t he? Cat was his stepmother, he believed he was a bastard and never knew who his mother was, his first girlfriend shot him full of arrows, he was killed by his “brothers”, his sister lied to him about their fighting forces even though he agreed to help her get back Winterfell, he was made king but his sister undermined him in front of everyone, he went to get a queen’s help and was quasi taken captive, he went on a dangerous mission for another queen that ended up being pointless. Then he fell in love and bent the knee to Dany, which caused more conflict, all to keep all these whingy people alive. And now his battle is over before he even got to draw his sword on the enemy, and his girlfriend’s battle is on the horizon.
      The man has not had an easy time. The fact that he’s still such a good guy in spite of that makes me root for him. Though at this point I’m almost rooting for him to retire with his direwolf and a dragon, somewhere warm and battle-free. 🙂

      I know, 🙂 . Give the guy a break!

      One thing that gives me pause is Berric. Thoros and Mel were both insistent that Rholler brought back Berric for a purpose. We saw that purpose fulfilled last episode.

      Now, who’s the other guy who was brought back by Rholler? Yep. Jon. Is it to rule wisely and well for 50 years, or some other purpose? It obviously was not just to bring people together to defeat the Others. So what is it?

      Ever since he was killed and then ressurrected, I’ve been feeling he’s on borrowed time. For how long?

        Quote  Reply

    210. It wouldn’t have seemed like a cliche to you? To me, Jon is like Dudley Do right. I love how much feeling and finesse the actor has brought to the role, but the character has never seemed mature enough to move beyond the brooding handsome loyal sidekick. I think GRRM’s world deserved more than an old-fashioned and traditional, dare I say hackneyed, treatment of the characters. I take it seriously, that his character wants to “break the wheel.” I’m hoping for an ending that is not binary.

        Quote  Reply

    211. Mr Fixit,

      And yet a lot of show only viewers aren’t willing to give him credit for most of those. They think he lost the Battle Of The Bastards and Sansa won it. They believe he didn’t deserve to be KITN and proved it when he gave up their independence. They think he failed in this past episode and was only saved because of Arya.

      It’s a visual medium. People react differently to what they see. So many of Jon’s victories have been coupled with him failing at some point and needing to be saved.

        Quote  Reply

    212. Lady MarMar,

      D&D’s version of Jon could be characterized as being a Dudley-Do-Right. However, I hate to keep banging this drum, but that is not the character in the books. That is the character that is in my head, not the show’s version. Almost all of your criticisms could not be used to describe book Jon.

      I think people need to realize that GRRM came up with this series and how he wanted to end it nearly 30 years ago. So many of the hopes for the ending are based on our current time, where female empowerment and equality is at the forefront of the zeitgeist. And I absolutely am here for that. But I’m not sure that was GRRM’s vision in the early 90’s.

        Quote  Reply

    213. Of course, I have read the books. That’s why I watch the show. And they are different art forms. And Jon is fictional in both. To me, he doesn’t seem very bright or mature, in either form. But I love him just the same. Kit Harington has done a fabulous job! I will cry when (if) Jon dies.

        Quote  Reply

    214. Mr Fixit: A rather reductive interpretation of Jon’s role so far. His contributions to the overall story include, but are not limited to:

      (1) forming an alliance with the Wildlings, which was instrumental to both saving the Free Folk from extinction and mounting the successful campaign against the Boltons;

      (2) liberating Winterfell and the North together with Sansa, which in turn made it possible to start preparations for the defense against White Walkers;

      (3) convincing Daenerys of the true nature of the threat and managing to secure tens of thousands of additional troops and a couple of flying dinosaurs to help with the war effort.

      Yes, he didn’t kill the Night King. So what?

      While I disagree that Jon is the hero of the piece, I do feel he hasn’t ever been given a true success or victory on his own merit in the way other characters have. The examples you have used actually demonstrate this.

      1. His attempt to reconcile and save the wildlings was met by scorn and derision (never acceptance) by most of them at Hardhome, his own men and the northern lords lie Glover. He was hated for it, killed for it and in the end he only saved a handful of them. This was by no means a victory for Jon.

      2. In the BOTB he needed to be saved by Sansa. It was not his victory. He was shown to be impulsive and abandon his plans to save Rickon (which I personally feel was the right choice for Jon) and rise his entire army because of it. This isn’t a victory for Jon either.

      3. Even in that, he hadn’t convinced her till he followed Tyrion’s plan and then needed to be saved again, by Dany, with a terrible price, the loss of Viserion. Also not a victory for Jon, though it did secure the alliance.

      I love Jon, he is by far and away my favourite character, but he is a frustrating character to have as your favourite, because he has been progressively been getting less perceptive, tactical and measured as the show has gone on. His biggest victories has been the battle for the wall and the bringing of justice to the mutineers, but since then, he has been making big mistakes and needing to be saved. He is shown to be elected as leader of the north, but is then always shown being questioned and challenged by his lords/ladies and sister. When he says to Sansa in 801, “Have you any faith in me at all?” I mirrored his frustration because no, Sansa, nor his northern lords and ladies, have shown faith in him since they crowned him as they have constantly challenged him.

        Quote  Reply

    215. Lady MarMar,

      Uhm… The character who said she wanted to break the wheel was Dany in S5. A nice speech to Tyrion.

      Not that she’s been acting like that since she came to Westeros, it’s more like bend the knee or burn. And no, I don’t think she’ll go mad queen and be the end game villain. But if she really wants to break the wheel, she has to act on those words.

      I’m also hoping for an end to feudalism as Westeros knows it but it cannot leap into elective democracy all at once, not under any leader. I’m hoping for more of a Magna Carta/Declaration of Arbroath type of situation, with a kind of a proto-parliament emerging.

      In the books Jon and Jaime are among the most “feminist” characters. Both think about women’s situations, question the existing social order, try to do right by women. Cersei is one of the biggest misogynists, she hates other women because they remind her of what she is.

      There are even shades of misogyny in Arya’s story – the cool tomboy vs. the “stupid” feminine girl. I give a pass to young Arya’s internalised misogynistic feelings, she was a child and didn’t want to conform to the expected gender role. I didn’t like the S7 Arya disparaging Sansa for her “pretty dresses and pretty handwriting”, but then, siblings often regress to their childhood selves even when grown up (especially if they last saw each other when children!), and that whole storyline was written poorly anyway.

        Quote  Reply

    216. Lady MarMar,

      Well, he is just a teenager in the books. I’d say he’s pretty damn mature for that age. I don’t know how you would come to the conclusion that he’s not that bright in the books, but I’ll just agree to disagree. He’s not Tyrion. But he’s certainly knowledgeable and with a perfectly normal level of intelligence.

        Quote  Reply

    217. Tyrion Pimpslap:
      Mr Fixit,

      And yet a lot of show only viewers aren’t willing to give him credit for most of those. They think he lost the Battle Of The Bastards and Sansa won it. They believe he didn’t deserve to be KITN and proved it when he gave up their independence. They think he failed in this past episode and was only saved because of Arya.

      It’s a visual medium. People react differently to what they see. So many of Jon’s victories have been coupled with him failing at some point and needing to be saved.

      People can go on believing whatever they want, as they always have 😊. They are free to interpret or misinterpret stuff, mentally add or subtract plot points, character beats and all that jazz. Bottom line is, Jon did accomplish all the things mentioned. Without him (and yes, Sansa), Ramsay Bolton would lead the defense against the WW. Without him, Daenerys would be dealing with Cersei, blissfully ignorant until possibly too late. Jon was THE linchpin, organizationally and narratively, that made the victory possible.

      That it wasn’t him that dealt the final blow is, to my mind at least, of total insignificance. I mean, if some of these people wrote World War 2, they’d probably have an Auschwitz survivor kill Hitler to end the war.

        Quote  Reply

    218. Fiery Heart,

      The Dark Lord’s threat was slowly carefully built up over three huge books and ended with the Battle of the Black Gate.

      That was the final stand – the last desperate attempt to distract the Enemy with little hope of Success.

      After Sauron is defeated the tension, the threat and the stakes are mostly gone and the story starts to wind down then. Apart from the Scouring of the Shire, which takes up only a small section at the end of the story, the tale is being wound up.

      Sauron IS the Lord if the Rings. He most certainly isn’t a distraction and his presence is felt and drives the entire plot.

        Quote  Reply

    219. Che,

      Contrary to your conclusions, those examples show that Jon did in fact “win”. He wasn’t alone, but why would that be a bad thing? He faced challenges, he sometimes erred, he had people to help him when he needed it the most. Yet he did what was necessary nevertheless.

        Quote  Reply

    220. Mr Fixit:
      Che,

      Contrary to your conclusions, those examples show that Jon did in fact “win”. He wasn’t alone, but why would that be a bad thing? He faced challenges, he sometimes erred, he had people to help him when he needed it the most. Yet he did what was necessary nevertheless.

      I personally wouldn’t say Jon ‘wins’ if he is murdered. Pretty final isn’t it? Only magic brought him back. I also wouldn’t say Jon wins if is about to die and then is saved by others. That’s not Jon winning, that’s Jon being rescued from certain death by other characters; hard to see how that makes him the winner in those scenarios.

        Quote  Reply

    221. Lady MarMar:
      I really hope Jon dies, that they end the patriarchy, and start holding elections.

      Eeeek! I would loathe such an ending. Would sour the entire series for me. Oh well, we are all different 😊

        Quote  Reply

    222. Che,

      “Winning” or “success” is defined as accomplishing set goals. Jon rallied the Wildlings, Jon and Sansa liberated Winterfell thanks, in part, to those very Wildlings, Jon struck a deal that provided armies and dragons. I’d say that qualifies as winning. Dying and having help along the way doesn’t change success parameters.

        Quote  Reply

    223. Mr Fixit:
      Che,

      “Winning” or “success” is defined as accomplishing set goals. Jon rallied the Wildlings, Jon and Sansa liberated Winterfell thanks, in part, to those very Wildlings, Jon struck a deal that provided armies and dragons. I’d say that qualifies as winning. Dying and having help along the way doesn’t change success parameters.

      I think we may be arguing slightly different points. I’m not saying Jon hasn’t helped the side of the living win and therefore achieve his goal. I’m talking about the initial point that Jon hasn’t had the same “hero’s triumph” that the other characters have had. Daenerys has had so many moments where she is bathed in glory (when she gets her Unsullied army, when she steps out of the pyre/burning huts and is worshipped by the Dothraki, when she successfully liberates slaves and is treated as a goddess for it). These are the moments I think Jon has lacked. Despite the immeasurable amazing deeds he has accomplished, he has mostly received scorn, challenges from his people/family, was murdered once for it and has needed to be saved because he has made foolish decisions. It’s pretty unsatisfying when you consider what a noble and inspiring character he is.

      Hopefully everyone will heed Tyrion’s words, “If anyone survives they have Jon Snow to thank for it.”

        Quote  Reply

    224. Well, that’s how his story goes. Now we’re getting into some seriously subjective territory: wanting this character or that to get recognition (we think) he deserves. But that is not relevant to the initial debate on whether Arya “stealing” Jon’s kill thematically diminishes his story arc. I hope we can conclude there is enough evidence that it doesn’t.

        Quote  Reply

    225. Mr Fixit:
      Well, that’s how his story goes. Now we’re getting into some seriously subjective territory: wanting this character or that to get recognition (we think) he deserves. But that is not relevant to the initial debate on whether Arya “stealing” Jon’s kill thematically diminishes his story arc. I hope we can conclude there is enough evidence that it doesn’t.

      I haven’t seen anyone arguing this debate.

        Quote  Reply

    226. Mango:
      talvikorppi,

      As you know, I expect Jaime to survive. I expect Jaime to thrive.

      I am content if he settles in a beach house on Tarth.

      I am however happy to be the unicorn crackpot that expects him to be King Jaime. Yeah, I am allowed my quirks!

      You aren’t the only unicorn in the woods! I would be in heaven if either Jaime or Tyrion ended up sitting in the throne. Hey, the lion is already hanging above the throne. No need to redecorate the throne room. Problem solved.

      Seriously, I’d be happy just to have Jaime survive the series.

      Oh, and the Mountain needs to die by fire. Like a nice juicy mutton chop.

        Quote  Reply

    227. Mango:
      talvikorppi,

      Jaime has been falling for Brienne for years. He has known for a while that there is something deep there.

      I just watched the ep “Oathkeeper” the other day, and the look on Jaime’s face when Brienne and Podrick rode away. Sigh. There was some great acting there from NCW. Without saying a word you could see that he would miss her terribly, and was very confused about that.

        Quote  Reply

    228. Che,

      Just wanted to agree with everything you’re saying. And add that even at the Wall battle, he lost Gren, Pyp and Ygritte and Stannis had to come in to save their bacon, so I don’t think he considered that a full win either.

      He keeps fighting though, and it’s never about taking credit or having power. It’s about doing what’s right. It’s why I still root for him.

        Quote  Reply

    229. Ben Handley,

      Ben Handley,

      It most certainly was the first full scale engagement with the AOTD. There have contacts and skirmishes that took place beyond the wall, but the Battle of Winterfell was the first time a fully formed army of the living faced the AOTD in the show. I have watched every episode.

        Quote  Reply

    230. Ryan,

      Agree with this so much! Will we ever learn who the NK was, why he was chosen specifically? What about all of his symbolism? Will the 3 Eyed Raven cease to exist now that the night is no longer dark and full of terrors? And if he does, will he still have powers? What will the Wildlings do now? And so much more… It all just fell so…flat. After so many years, Winter is no longer coming. Where will they send the criminals. The Wall is no longer needed.

        Quote  Reply

    231. Renly’s Peach: You aren’t the only unicorn in the woods!I would be in heaven if either Jaime or Tyrion ended up sitting in the throne.Hey, the lion is already hanging above the throne.No need to redecorate the throne room.Problem solved.

      Seriously, I’d be happy just to have Jaime survive the series.

      Oh, and the Mountain needs to die by fire.Like a nice juicy mutton chop.

      UNICORNS UNITED!

        Quote  Reply

    232. Che,

      Well, thousands out there obviously are, you included. But, since we are going in circles, I will excuse myself from further participation in this futile endeavor.

        Quote  Reply

    233. Mr Fixit:
      Che,

      Well, thousands out there obviously are, you included. But, since we are going in circles, I will excuse myself from further participation in this futile endeavor.

      Yes, perhaps you better had, because if you don’t want to listen to what I am actually saying and what I actually feel, but instead tell me what I am thinking and put words in my mouth, then there is no reason in continuing this discussion.

        Quote  Reply

    234. talvikorppi: I felt somewhat disappointed and underwhelmed after my first watch of Ep3, but liked it a lot more on my second and third watches. I’m a bit two minds about Arya killing the Night King (mostly book stuff) but I’m OK with it, even kind of like it (Arya, who’s for so long been an instrument of death now defeating death type of thing.) The one thing I still don’t like was the execution, the suprise leap out of nowhere GOTCHA moment because I don’t like surprise GOTCHA moments in general.

      As soon as Mel said “… and blue eyes” I thought, oh, is this going where I think it is..? and was momentarily annoyed (oh god, not this super-ninja-assassin-warrior-princess stuff, what about Jon?) but then thought, well, she is an assassin, she just showed all that stealth in the library… The problem I have is that we didn’t see stealth from her, we saw invisibility. I realise other people have no problem at all with that leap out of nowhere, and that’s fine.

      As to Jon… I think it was actually quite brilliant to make him feel so helpless, so powerless, so frustrated. I think Brienne said something like “There’s nothing so hateful as failing to protect the ones you love” (talking about Renly to Cat). Or maybe Cersei said it about her children. Anyway, it’s an idea that’s been floating around – ties in with Arya’s story, too. Ned’s execution, Red Wedding etc.

      I loved it because I’m a big ASNAWP fan, but I agree with you in preferring a slightly less “GOTCHA moment” execution. I would have liked one slight change in the execution:
      Bran is staring down the Night King, and says something like “I know how you die. I could tell you, but it wouldn’t matter.” Camera switches so we’re looking up at the Night King from Bran’s perspective, with a large overhanging weirwood branch out of focus in the background. The Night King considers Bran’s comment for a moment, as Arya creeps along the branch in the background, getting into position. Night King decides he doesn’t care, or doesn’t believe Bran, and reaches for his sword. Arya leaps.

      This would resolve the question of how she got past the White Walkers in a relatively clear way: She went over their heads in the treetops of the godswood. If you consider for a moment that she leaped on the Night King from above, and he’s standing under a big tree in the middle of a wooded area, leaping from a tree is the obvious conclusion to draw.

      I think because it’s a visual medium, many people expect to explicitly see the tree branch she leapt from, and immediately revert to a reaction of “WTF, how can Arya suddenly turn invisible and fly?” when the show fails to visually depict it, rather than assuming the most obvious plausible scenario in the given environment, that she went over their heads through the forest.

      I’m not sure if the books will end up with a main leader of the white walkers analogous to the show’s Night King, but as I posted earlier in this comment thread, there was a book scene from Arya’s Harrenhal time in book 2 that strongly seemed to foreshadow her moving through the treetops of the godswood to kill a god at the heart tree, so I think this scene was heavily based off GRRM’s plans, and I think that maybe Mel’s “eyes” prophecy to Arya back in season 3 was a way to fill in for the fact that the season 2 Harrenhal scenes in the show (as great as they were) cut the bit that foreshadows this scene.

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    235. JamesL:
      Ryan,

      I agree with most your criticisms however it is a bit unfair to expect D&D to answer all these mysteries. GRRM likely doesn’t even have the answers to much of them so it is up D&D to give satisfying answers which is the hardest part in a story like this. The difference is GRRM has decades to try figure it out(or never figure it out) while the show has to end now. It is very easy to add these mystical elements to a story which fans love to theorize about, it very hard to give satisfying answers to them. The writers of Lost certainly learned that.

      With that said, the show could have come up with a better ending for the WW plot with more mythology, mysticism, and prophecies involved. They could have used Bran’s 3ER powers to bring the Azor Ahai and Lightbringer prophecy to the show which not only would make the WW ending more satisfying but also make the 3ER plot less pointless than it seems now.

      This is exactly how I feel. Maybe the writers felt it was the only real way to end the story line when they decided they were tired of doing the show and wanted to end the story with a shortened season get on to deciding who who will sit the Iron Throne. No matter the reason, it felt anti-climatic.

      I didn’t have an issue with Arya killing the NK. But it sure seemed so easy once Mel hinted to Arya that this is what she needed to do to fulfill her purpose. Plus that superhero leap at the NK at the end was a bit too much. I wold have rather had her jump out of a tree or from behind a bush or anything other than take the ridiculous Michael Jordan leap at the NK. Oh well.

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    236. Che,

      “I’ll repeat what I mentioned in another comment, if Arya weren’t involved in the fighting for Winterfell, if she were the one on a dragon, wouldn’t people feel perplexed and that her skills hadn’t been utilised?”

      _______
      Arya on a dragon = Ten Bears Wish Fulfillment.
      (E.g., mid-air leap from Rhaegal passenger seat onto back of undead Viserion, and plunge VS dagger through NK’s eye and out the back of his skull.)

      I will say that the Bran Bait plan and NK = mothership device both seemed silly.

      As for the abrupt end to the WW threat? Who says there’s no NK, Jr…..

      🎵Well, I saw Lon Chaney walking with the Queen
      Doing the Werewolves of London
      I saw Lon Chaney, Jr. walking with the Queen
      Doing the Werewolves of London.
      🎶

        Quote  Reply

    237. Ten Bears:
      Che,

      “I’ll repeat what I mentioned in another comment, if Arya weren’t involved in the fighting for Winterfell, if she were the one on a dragon, wouldn’t people feel perplexed and that her skills hadn’t been utilised?”

      _______
      Arya on a dragon = Ten Bears Wish Fulfillment.
      (E.g., mid-air leap from Rhaegal passenger seat onto back of undead Viserion, and plunge VS dagger through NK’s eye and out the back of his skull.)

      I will say that the Bran Bait plan and NK = mothership device both seemed silly.

      As for the abrupt end to the WW threat? Who says there’s no NK, Jr…..

      🎵Well, I saw Lon Chaney walking with the Queen
      Doing the Werewolves of London
      I saw Lon Chaney, Jr. walking with the Queen
      Doing the Werewolves of London.
      🎶

      Oh Ten Bears, glad you’re back 😂

        Quote  Reply

    238. I will say that now that Arya got her “big kill” I’m more than happy to let everyone/anyone else have their own as well. I think them giving her (that) will have excluded her from consideration for the next one(s).

      Excluding someone specific though I still want to see a lot more of her kicking random asses. I can’t get enough of that (as I am still repeatedly watching her twirling wight fight)(I played a game for years that had a class called a Dervish. That’s what it reminds me of).

      I do still have my scene scenario floating in my mind where she destroys the Mountain at a Cleganebowl after Sandor is injured or simply steps aside. There again though, now that she got the NK I feel that’s even less likely to happen.

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    239. Ten Bears,

      TenBears, 🍻 So glad you’re back

      Is this your 1st post since watching ep 3?

      If not, where could I find it?

      I’ve been so excited to hear your 1st impressions & thoughts about it 🌝

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