What a spectacle! I loved everything about this episode so pardon me while I gush. The entire episode happens at The Wall and isn’t it about time? I can see why they saved it until nearly the end of the season. It was worth the wait. Though we have a few lingering plot threads, everything finishes up or takes a new path. All of our friends, Sam, Jon, Grenn, Pyp, and Edd get plenty of screen time. Thorne and Slynt were brilliant this week as well. And giants. The giants were so sweet. I assume I don’t need to tell you that there are SPOILERS AHEAD. The Brothers in Black know that battle with the Wildlings is imminent. We have some pre-battle drama then the Wildlings attack the Wall. Tormund Giantsbane, Ygritte and The Fine Young Cannibals attack from the rear. To fight on two fronts, the leadership has to divide and, eventually, Jon gets to call the shots. The Night’s Watch take the day but at heavy cost. There is closure with Sam and Gilly. There is closure with Jon and Ygritte. No big surprises. Even Ygritte. Don’t tell me you didn’t see that coming. This is George RR Martin, after all. It was a fairly predictable episode though I didn’t mind. It was enjoyable to watch each character fulfill his role and I don’t feel cheated by any of the deaths. And there were a few. Owen Teale as Alliser Thorne really impressed me. We got everything we needed from Alliser and Jon who have been at each other’s throats since day one. Thorne takes the high road for about a minute as he basically says to Jon, “I was wrong, I acknowledge you and go f*ck yourself.” When it became clear that Tormund had breached their fort, Alliser gave command of the Wall to Slynt and charged headlong into battle. Like a Boss. Icing on the cake, he got to make a big Henry V, “St. Crispin’s Day” speech. Same thing Gibson did in Braveheart or Aragorn in Return of the King. Bill Pullman in Independence Day. It’s in every movie where one army faces overwhelming forces. If it didn’t happen, Thorne’s character arc would have felt empty. Teale’s version of the speech was honest and I believed him. He makes it out of the battle alive but injured. Well done, sir. We’ll see you next season. Slynt made it out alive, too. Sniveling coward that he is. Should I feel bad for Dominic Carter because he has to play such a weasel? No. Better to be a weasel in Game of Thrones than nothing at all. Slynt went bye-bye for a while until he was told to help Thorne and sent into battle to die. Too bad he found somewhere to hide. See you next season as well, Janos Slynt. Ass. The whole bit about Sam sending Gilly to Mole’s Town wore me down this season. All of the frustration paid off as they’re reunited and Sam finally takes his first kiss. John Bradley is marvelous as Samwell Tarly. He plays vulnerable so very well. Actually, my congratulations should go to the casting director from Season One. He is perfect. For those of you that are fans, expect more from him next season as Sam, Gilly and the baby make it out alive. We had to say good-bye to friends in this episode. Pyp and Grenn were both killed in the battle. Though their characters were never fully explored in the series, their deaths were magnificent. Josef Altin has been a friendly face as Pyp since the beginning of the series and Mark Stanley as Grenn transitioned from bully to constant companion in Season One. Pyp’s death was tragic and Grenn took down a giant. Oh, man, the giants. Want to know why we haven’t seen much of the dragons? It’s because Visual Effects blew their budget on the giants! A giant shooting a giant bow. I never knew I needed such a thing until I saw it. Remember that tunnel Jon said they should seal? It’s giant-sized and one of them gets in. Both of the giants, Ian Whyte as the eldest and Neil Fingleton as the younger, performed so well as intelligent juggernauts. They hook up a mammoth (they ride mammoths!) to the tunnel gate with precision choreography. I found myself cheering them on. The entire battle for The Wall was amazing. As good as any epic movie in the same genre. We’ve been building to this since Season Two and it did not disappoint. The Wildlings climbing the Wall, the weapons meant to keep them from doing so. The grandness of it all. Just amazing. The night and the episode would have belonged to Jon and Ygritte as both of their stories converged if not for Yuriy Kolokolnikov as Styr, the Mom and Dad eating cannibal. After nearly killing Thorne he sets his sights on Jon Snow. Styr beats Jon, knocking the Valyrian steel out of his hands and smacking Jon’s head against an anvil in Looney Tunes fashion. How does Jon win in the end? Ball-peen hammer to the head, bitch! Game of Thrones has now given us two incredible busted heads in as many weeks. Jon and Ygritte. It had to end that way. Jon wouldn’t kill her, she couldn’t kill him, so a ten-year-old shot her in the heart. Saw it coming a million miles away. Rose Leslie spent the season scowling and acting all revengey but her final performance was strong and sweet. She’s gone and our hearts break for Jon. We’re left with Jon exiting through the tunnel, without weapons, to treat with Mance Rayder, the leader of the Wildlings. Though we’ll see that meeting in the final episode of the season, I believe we are done at The Wall. I couldn’t have hoped for more. Next week: dragons, right? Oh, and Tyrion faces execution. See you next week for the series finale! Game of Thrones 4.09 “The Watchers on the Wall”5.0Overall ScoreShare this:TweetShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading... Related Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYou must be logged in to post a comment.