Bran Stark may have won the Iron Throne, but Game of Thrones fanatics should feel like the biggest winners this Sunday night. Until the next Star Wars trilogy comes out, we don’t have to deal with David Benioff and D.B Weiss’ piss poor writing in the show formerly known as one of my favorite dramas.
I’ll be kind to HBO’s Game of Thrones one last time and point out the few bright points in this finale first. This is no accomplishment by any stretch of the imagination but it’s worth noting that it was a sizable improvement from last week’s episode “The Bells”.
In just 90 minutes of airtime, I never thought so many great character assassinations could take place. On top of that, we see outrageous plot armor for Arya Stark. A tiresome and predictable stretch of her surviving the burning of King’s Landing that almost everybody else died from. That was just one of many examples of forced, rushed action where the writers cut corners to create unrealistic moments for convenience or shock factor in “The Bells”.
Luckily, the final episode didn’t have nearly as much of that as the last did. As bad as this ending was at least no one broke the fourth wall this episode either. Euron does so after the lamest duel in all of Westeros versus Jaime. After he stabs Jaime in the stomach he ever-so stupidly looks right into the camera and says “I’m the man who killed Jaime Lannister”, with his silly evil smirk on his face. This effectively takes the cake for the most inauthentic scripting in the series to date. Congrats David and D.B, your stupidity outdid itself yet again.
In terms of what went down in the series finale, the one redeeming moment amongst all the horror from this whole season was Jon killing Daenerys. We were all desperately waiting for Jon’s balls to drop this season. “She’s my queen” seemed to be the only sentence he was capable of constructing this season. Lord Varys and many others firmly believed as a Targaryen-Stark crossbreed he was best suited to lead Westeros. As that belief from others grew, Jon progressively trends the other way. He wilted in the most highly pressurized situations and seemingly had no interest in any tough decision making at all.
But under Tyrion and Arya’s advisement and warning of how Dany will rule with tyranny, Jon stabs her right beside the Iron Throne that she’s preparing to claim. Plenty of characters were wasted away by the end of this show. Luckily for us, Jon Snow had his climactic moment of fulfillment by taking out the “Mad Queen”. It may have been leaked and predictable from the season’s beginning but it was one of the few executed scenes, despite some corny dialogue leading up to the stabbing. Corny dialogue was prominent throughout this season though. I will say that from a cinematic and symbolic standpoint, Drogon burning the Iron throne to a crisp was pretty awesome as well.
— Abhinav (@WonderEarthling) May 20, 2019
But alas, after that lone satisfying moment, about everything else was disappointing. As the Unsullied and Greyworm’s prisoner, Tyrion manages to name the ruler of Westeros while in handcuffs. He could possibly be put on the chopping block for his treason, yet he is given the liberty to pull that off? Okay then.
The million dollar question from season’s beginning was then answered. The safe pick, the awkward kid in the wheelchair prevailed and “Bran the Broken” takes the Iron Throne via Tyrion’s choosing. From the standpoint of Bran being Ned Stark’s one true born son left, this makes a lot of sense. I like that it redeems Ned’s death. A death which lays out the entire groundwork for the series back in season one.
But in season eight Bran has contributed literally nothing and was barely seen on screen. Sure he lured the Night King toward him setting Arya up to kill him. But his death was so empty and unfulfilling I don’t want to give him any credit for that anyway. That’s a whole other atrocity I’m going to try to forget about.
Also, as the Three-Eyed Raven, he’s hardly a human at this point. We know he has the unique power of being able to warg into any of the memories of Westeros. Having said that, this soulless, emotionless, biggest punchline of a joke or meme waiting to happen is supposed to be put in an ultimate position of power and leadership? A position by the way which he had no interest in last we heard from him on it a couple of episodes back. Now the Mother of Dragons has died and Westeros has no direction. Everything is in shambles and ash. All of a sudden he goes from wanting no part of it to saying “why do you think I came all the way down here?” I don’t know. Nothing you do or say lately makes sense anyway, Bran. I wish I could tell you I cared but I mentally checked out at this point.
My interest could only be rejuvenated by more stupidity. Sure enough, David and D.B came through once again. After the one satisfying moment in the episode where he shows some backbone killing Dany, Jon’s character is thoroughly wasted away.
He gets punished for killing Dany by being exiled and sent back to the Night’s Watch where his journey to ascension began. So you mean to tell me Jon being part Targaryen ends up having no actual significance? Like, none at all? It gives him no leeway at all to any sort of power? Come on now. One of the most badass characters in TV history being reduced to exile by the end was just absurd.
Not to mention, the only roadblock keeping Jon out of Westeros is the Unsullied. This is assuming Bran would let his half brother Jon be a free man. Greyworm and the Unsullied sail to Essos in the blink of an eye. Why is Jon still subjected to going back to the Night’s Watch with them completely out of the picture?
At least Jon pet Ghost this episode. Congrats David and D.B, I’m sure you were beyond excited to create this touching, redeeming moment after Jon left Ghost hanging before heading south a couple of episodes ago sending fans in outrage. Too bad you messed up the entire series’ legacy leading up to this. Jon Snow’s ultimate outcome was one of many examples of this.
Meanwhile, his half-sisters, particularly Arya, have an insignificantly quiet ending as well. Arya’s traveling to where no one has been before, hoping for the best knowing nothing about her journey. Nice. She’s an assassin with asinine plot armor, she’ll manage just fine I guess.
Sansa ends up as the queen of Winterfell as an independent from the now “six kingdoms”. That’s fine and fitting and what not, but what significance remains in the north at this point? It just seems like a cop-out to give the Stark family the most perfect ending they could.
It was silly of me to think those two hacks could’ve put a great final chapter to this in just six episodes. I’m forever grateful to have watched Game of Thrones, a written story which demanded to be brought to life on screen. It’s just a shame the show failed miserably to meet the bar that George R.R Martin’s book series set it at.