“We are the realm’s second sons, Daemon. Our worth is not given. It must be made.”
After the season opener’s rather lengthy scene-setting and exposition, the showrunners of House of the Dragon hit the ground running in the second ep with the beginning of an actual plot. So keen are they to get the plot up and running that we get plunged into it without any explanation, as the opening scene pans across a beach full of carnage, with voracious crabs feasting on the bodies of the dead (and the not-so-dead).
“The only thing that could tear down the House of the Dragon was itself.”
Roll up, roll up, for the Big Autumn Battle of the Fantasy Epics! In the blue corner, Amazon’s Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, reportedly the most expensive TV show ever made! And in the red corner, it’s HBO’s younger upstart, House of the Dragon, a prequel to their ratings juggernaut Game of Thrones!
“Love is the death of duty.” “Sometimes duty is the death of love.”
So. After 8 years and 73 episodes, the biggest TV show of the last decade has finally come to a conclusion. It’s fair to say that, even with the last couple of years admittedly reducing and simplifying the show’s multifarious convoluted plotlines, tying up every loose end satisfactorily was always going to be a tall order. Expectations for a series finale have rarely been higher – and harder to meet.
“Men decide where power resides, whether they want to or not.”
Dracarys indeed. Lots of it. If Missandei’s final word was
an instruction, this week saw it obeyed to the letter, and gave Game of Thrones fans the spectacle they’d
always wanted from the final battle for King’s Landing.
“I’m here to free the world from tyrants. That is my destiny. And I will serve it no matter the cost.”
After all the storming excitement of last week’s episode, I
think Game of Thrones showrunners
Benioff and Weiss thought we needed a bit of a breather before moving on to the
remaining battles for Westeros. So this week we got The Last of the Starks, a satisfying but curiously schizoid episode
which came across as nothing so much as two individual eps glued together.
“The Night King is coming.” “The dead are already here.”
Been waiting for a battle? Well, this week’s Game of Thrones should have satisfied, delivering the show’s longest ever ep, and it was pretty much all battle, all the time, from beginning to end. Exciting though that sounds, it does run the risk of being pretty one note; even carnage gets dull after an hour or so.
“We don’t have time for all this. The Night King has your dragon. He’s one of them now.. The Wall has fallen. The dead move south.”
So, I’ve been quiet on the blog of late, I know. The CELTA course was so intensive that I spent all my time writing lessons and assignments, teaching and planning. As I’ve moved into the real world of doing this for money, I’m still spending all my creativity putting lessons together, rather than writing here.
But more about my life in Barcelona will follow! For now, though, Game of Thrones is back for its very last season. I’ve been blogging every episode since season two, so teaching work aside, I’m going to see it through to the end 🙂
“They fought together, despite their differences. Together. We need to do the same if we’re going to survive. Because the enemy’s real. It’s always been real.”
As Game of Thrones moves ever-closer to its conclusion, the narrative pace seems to be massively accelerating in this shorter, penultimate season. Gone are the days when you could reasonably predict a season’s structure; that there’d be an impressive battle by episode four or so, then much political machination leading to events of great magnitude in episode nine, followed by one ep of picking up the pieces. We’ve only just got through four episodes, and we’ve had an epic naval battle, followed by the seizing of both Casterly Rock and Highgarden, and now the devastating first deployment of a dragon just outside King’s Landing.
Wow. Have you been missing those epic battle sequences Game of Thrones does so well of late? Yes, there’s been some awesome political manoeuvring, backstabbing and the general nastiness the show is so good at. But perhaps you hanker for those slightly more formulaic days of the early seasons, when episode 9 was guaranteed to centre around a stonking, rip-roaring epic battle. Continue reading “Game of Thrones: Season 6, Episode 9 – Battle of the Bastards”