Game of Thrones Season 7 Finale – Thoughts, Musings, and WTFs
It’s been a few days since the Game of Thrones season 7 finale aired. I’ve had some time to process it and watch it again to make sure I didn’t miss anything. Now it’s time for me to join the 8.4 gazillion people writing about it.
Just in case you weren’t one of the 16.5 million people that watched the season 7 finale live or via stream, consider yourself warned.
My Thoughts on the Season 7 Finale – Opening
Let me be upfront and say this gif perfectly sums up my emotional progression through the episode:
As far as episodes go, the season 7 finale ranks in my top 10 for the series. Battles, Ice Dragons, tension, secrets, Ice Dragons, cliff hangers, sex, and did I mention ICE DRAGONS? How could you not love this episode?
The episode opens with a Helm’s Deep-esque display of innumerable soldiers converging on King’s Landing. If I had balls to turtle, they would have. It sets the episode up well though. A show of force with that magnitude brooks no argument – shit is about to get real.
From there we get into one of my favourite parts of the whole episode. The many, many reunions between characters long separated. Tyrion and Bronn, Tyrion and Pod, The Hound and The Mountain, The Hound and Brienne of Tarth, Jon and Cersei, Cersei and Tyrion, Brienne and Jamie – the list goes on. Each relationship meaningful or special in its own way and each character bound to ignore everything that needs to be said in the interest of a bigger picture.
My Thoughts on the Season 7 Finale – the Deaths
There is a certain expectation when it comes to GoT finale deaths. Given everything that has gone down in previous seasons, I don’t think it’s possible for deaths to have the same shock factor they once did. We’ve been trained to expect our favourite heroes to die and our favourite villains to get what’s theirs.
Having said that, there were surprisingly few deaths in the season 7 finale. Threats of death sure – Cersei vs. Tyrion and Cersei vs. Jamie got me like –
The only major character to die, however satisfying, was Littlefinger. He wasn’t like other villains using brute force or torture to make himself hateable. We hated him purely because of his obsequious and manipulative nature. He was just greasy. It was beautiful to see him killed with his own knife. Hearing Sansa baldly state all of the plots and conspiracies Littlefinger had been a part of, only to order his execution by his own knife; it was like all of his crimes came back to bite him at the same time. He was never on Arya’s list, but I think if she had known half of what he’d done, she would’ve put him at the top.
Now, I know what you’re going to say. What about Tormund and all the men at Eastwatch? There’s no question that the majority of them have been killed and added to the army of the dead. You can’t have a chunk of the wall break away and not rack up the kills. But we don’t know where Tormund was when the wall collapsed, so I’m holding on to hope that he made it. He is (was) an entertaining character and the Tormund/Brienne storyline is gold.
My Thoughts on the Season 7 Finale – the Reveals
Seeing the undead dragon in action was terrifying. Dragons are hard enough to kill. How on earth are you going to kill one that has endless strength, breathes ice-flames, and can take down a 1000+ foot-thick wall imbued with magic? I’m guessing the usual anti-undead weapons – fire and dragon glass – won’t have much effect on an actual dragon. That leaves Valyrian steel, except that it’s the rarest metal in their world and all of the characters seem to have forgotten it works against the undead.
The confirmation of Jon’s parentage combined with Sam’s news and Bran’s vision revealed one shocking thing: the Baratheon war was a sham.
This whole time we’ve been comfortable knowing that Robert and Ned waged an uprising to put down a ruling family of tyrants. It was a just cause; a necessary war to defeat an absolute evil. I mean Aerys was literally “the Mad King” for god sakes, while Rhaegar was the brute that kidnapped Lyanna Stark and raped her.
Except it was all a lie. Ok, not all. Aerys was crazy AF. But Rhaegar was simply a guy in love and Robert was jealous. He used Aerys’s madness as an excuse to wage war and try to take what he wanted while Ned, stoic, ethical, honest Ned, went along with it. I don’t know what to think now.
My Thoughts on the Season 7 Finale – WTFs
I can’t talk about this episode, or about anything else regarding this season, without addressing the pacing. I don’t know if the writers are having problems because they no longer have the books to rely on, or if the hands of the producers are just too heavy.
Either way, the details and the pacing have suffered for it all season. I mean, it took Rob’s army two whole seasons to travel from Winterfell half way down Westeros. Yet Daenerys’ crew managed to travel from Eastwatch, to King’s Landing, to Dragonstone, and then on to White Harbour in a single episode. Huh? I don’t expect every journey to become an epic, and I get that the story is winding down so we can have every detail. But we could trade a few of Jon and Daenerys’ longing gazes for a bit more plot?
Speaking of Jon and Daenerys, yes they slept together, yes they are related. You are watching a show that promotes twincest my friends, an aunt/nephew scenario is not that scandalous. Let’s move on from all this feigned outrage.
Finally, lets talk about Cersei. She’s a tough, manipulative, murderess bitch, but until now I’ve had a grain of respect for her. Cersei’s always managed to balance her need for power with her loyalty to her family. This episode showed that she has clearly lost that balance. She is all about power now. She is ready to lose, in fact threaten to kill, her twin/lover/baby-daddy. Even in the face of the undead, she is more concerned with maintaining her crown than she is fighting to destroy a common, and very deadly, enemy. It’s pride and arrogance to the point of ignorance and I am done with her.
My Thoughts on the Season 7 Finale – Where we stand
I loved how the season 7 finale ended; it was a perfect mirror to the opening scene. We got a great, sweeping shot of the army of the dead in all their horrific glory. Just like the opening shot gave us a great, sweeping shot of the Targaryen army in all their fierce glory. Knowing that these two armies will face each other soon is both thrilling and terrifying. Winter is indeed here.
With the army of the dead officially past the wall and Cersei planning a double cross, the Stark/Targaryen alliance is, as Tyrion so delightfully described it, fucked. The numbers might look even, but given that the undead army is harder to kill and they have an ice dragon, I’d put the odds on the undead.
Winterfell has a lot going on. Sansa and Arya have made a truce and actually found common ground. Littlefinger is gone, but the knights of the Vale and every other family loyal to the Starks is hunkered down awaiting winter, death, or the undead – whichever comes first. Bran and Sam are the only ones who know the truth about Jon and his parentage. And everyone is going to go bananas when they are told that Jon bent the knee to Daenerys, he’s brought her and her army with him, and they just have to deal with it.
My Thoughts on the Season 7 Finale – Predictions
- Season 8 is going to have some of the best battle scenes of the whole series
- There is going to be a regular dragon vs. ice dragon showdown
- Jon is going to shit a brick when he finds out the truth about who he is
And two not-so-obvious/kind-of-asshole predictions:
The season 7 finale hit us upside the head with two pieces of foreshadowing around Jon and Daenerys. First their discussion around the prophecy made about Daenerys’ fertility. I think it’s safe to say that the fan theory about Jon and Daenerys having a kid is going to come true. Second, Jon’s vehement declaration that he was going to continue to always tell the truth “even if it kills me”. Face. Palm. You know nothing Jon Snow. That simple phrase means you’ll never make to the end.
Speaking of prophecies, there have been three that have lingered around the outskirts of the story for a while now. The prophecies about:
- Daenerys’ fertility
- Cersei’s life
- The as-yet unnamed “Prince who was Promised” or – as Missandei so kindly re-translated – “the ruler of unknown gender who was promised”
We’ve covered Daenerys’ fertility, but what if the Cersei’s prophecy and the promised ruler prophecy are linked? We know that Cersei is pregnant and that she will do whatever it takes to ensure the child survives. We also know that her prophecy told Cersei that a younger and more beautiful queen would take her place. What if the usurper she has so-long feared is her own daughter? When Cersei dies, she’ll leave the throne open for her daughter to ascend and become the ruler who was promised. That would be such sweet justice!
Ok pass the wine, I’m spent!