Game of Thrones Episode Review: The Iron Throne

Season 8, Episode 6

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Well. That’s that then. Jon kills Dany in a continuation of every scene between the two of them being as limp as a wet fart. Bran sits atop the iron wooden throne. Yes that Bran. The one who everyone thought should have died when Jamie pushed him out of a window in episode one. Greyworm has his indescribable rage dampened by a speech from Tyrion – his mortal enemy. Jon Snow is banished back to the Wall where he has the cheek to have a reunion with Ghost after unceremoniously dumping him a couple of episodes ago. Bronn shows up in the small council with Highgarden and a fancy new title. Sansa is Queen of the North (QUEEN OF THE NORTH ETC ETC) and Dread Pirate Arya is off to find the edge of the map in a move that may or may not result in a spin off.

The Iron Throne wasn’t just an underwhelming show finale, it was an underwhelming episode of television. If not for the beautifully shot final ten minutes it would have been a total bust. I am not one of these people that was appalled by Dany’s descent into madness but this final episode is conclusive proof that Game of Thrones should have died with The Night King. That was the real story of this season and indeed of the whole show. The living vs the dead. Ice vs fire.

The election of Bran the Broken as ruler of the six kingdoms was a case in point. Considering this was such a crucial part of the narrative, was this really the time to remind us that Edmure Tully is still a thing? And, even more alarmingly, did I see Robin Arryn there as well? That kid who used to suckle his mum despite being almost a teenager? And yet, Hot Pie is nowhere to be seen? This is an outrage…

In the end, Game of Thrones had backed itself into a corner to such an extent that The Iron Throne was probably about as good as it could be. Tyrion holds the episode together and yet we still have issues with pacing and dialogue. Was there a single memorable line in that episode? It’s hard to recall one.

Extras

  • It’s strange to imagine a world without a new season of Game of Thrones dropping each April but this season has shown that this was probably the right time to bow out. Let us remember the good times and forget Shireen and Jamie raping Cersei and Dorne. Especially Dorne.
  • The best moment of season eight wasn’t the death of the Night King. It wasn’t the destruction of King’s Landing and it wasn’t CleganeBowl. No, the knighting of Ser Brienne preceded by a selection of wonderfully drawn characters drinking wine and sharing stories was a reminder of what made us fall in love in the first place. When it was good, Game of Thrones really was as good as television gets.
  • And so we go into the long night. Winter is here. All the Lannister debts have been paid. It has been a pleasure growing up with the Starks and spending so much time talking, writing and arguing about this show. Thanks to everybody that has read these reviews and told me just how wrong I am in the comments.
  • The North Remembers.

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