In last night’s season finale of HBO’s Game of Thrones, the stage was finally set for an all-out war for next year; one that is unprecedented for televised drama, let alone fantasy.
Everyone’s favorite Targaryen, Dany, is a character who has had one of the simplest motivations presented amidst the large cast since Season 1. She aims to reclaim the Iron Throne, and in the process, upend the corruption that preceded her birth and resulted in the widespread war that killed her entire family.
Fast forward six seasons, and the seven kingdoms have become a smaller number, and the great houses that clashed during the first three seasons have dwindled into something completely different. In this new order of Westeros, where the children have essentially taken over and powerful women have replaced the aggressive patriarchy (see Lady Olenna, Queen Cersei, Ellaria Sand, Yara Greyjoy to an extent, and Sansa Stark), who will stand behind the Mother of Dragons, and who will attempt to challenge her as the Night’s King continues his long march to the Wall?
On Movie Pilot, I composed a full breakdown of where each House and Kingdom stands and how likely it is they will ally with Fire and Blood. Click here to read the article.
- Overall, I really enjoyed this finale and believe it to be the best season ender in the show’s history. Leave it to director Miguel Sapochnik for delivering three of the best episodes of the series, including last year’s “Hardhome,” along with “Battle of the Bastards” and now “Winds of Winter.”
- Time for the nitpicks: Some of the episode’s quick progression was jarring and inconsistent with how alliances and “big moments” of the show usually play out. It’s odd to see characters teleporting from place to place, quickly negotiating huge plot developments without much resistance. It just doesn’t feel quite as earned as we would expect to hear Jon referred to as “King in the North,” the reveal of Jon’s true parentage even, the Dornish/Tyrell alliance with Dany, and more. But I will lend the show credit for how King’s Landing wrapped up in probably the best way possible.
- One of the questions on everyone’s mind is whether or not Rhaegar Targaryen is Jon’s father, now that it’s been revealed (finally) that Lyanna is his mother and Ned is his uncle. I firmly hold to the uncomplicated theory that Rhaegar indeed impregnated Lyanna and out of love at that. There’s even credence to the idea that they were lawfully married during Robert’s Rebellion, despite Rhaegar’s marriage to Elia Martell, which would make Jon a legitimate Targaryen.
- Last note: if you’re interested in reading the books but have no intention of starting at the beginning (though you absolutely should), I suggest you start with Storm of Swords, the third book in A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin. There are certain deviations the show makes from this book in particular that you will want to be savvy on before reading Feast for Crows and Dance with Dragons.