TV Review: GAME OF THRONES (Season 6) Finale – ‘The Winds Of Winter’
While I catch my breath, I should warn you that this Review will contain massive Spoilers for ‘Game Of Thrones’ Season 6. Arguably the best Season of the adaptation of George R. R. Martin’s book saga, Season 6 concludes tonight with a massive bang, no pun intended.
Read on for my Review of the Season 6 Finale of ‘Game Of Thrones’, ‘The Winds Of Winter.’
The Season 6 finale opens with a long and drawn out sequence, which could possibly become one of the best opening sequences on Television. Featuring the slow process of Cersei’s (Lena Headey) trial, the sequence ends with one of the most drastic changes to the status quo within Westeros that we’ve ever gotten in the entire run of the series. While ‘Game Of Thrones‘ has always featured amazing music and score, it’s only this episode that I’ve become fully aware of how symbiotic the music is to the show. The organs and swelling of music completely complimented the thrilling suspense unfolding on scene. It was riveting and breathtaking all at the same time.
After 2 Seasons of being screwed by everyone around her, the evil, and ultimately, main antagonist of the show returns to her position established in earlier Seasons with a grand coup. Through the use of Wildire introduced in Season 2, Cersei is able to kill all her enemies in one full swoop. Inadvertently also causing the suicide of her only remaining child, who also happened to be King of Westeros. The ‘Game’ aspect of ‘Game Of Thrones‘ alsoo returns to the story by the end of this episode, as we see Cersei finally take the Iron Throne, much to the confused anger of Jaime.
As I’ve kept saying all season, Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) without Cersei is one of the best characters of the show, and this turn of events will definitely cause some strain on their relationship. Jaime may end up being the wildcard of the major conflicts brewing on the series between the larger parties, given his reason to Cersei’s taking of the throne.
One of those parties is of course what could be seen as the main protagonist of the series, Danaerys, (Emilia Clarke) the rightful heir of the Throne of Westeros. Or is she? After some housekeeping and a rousing speech by Tyrion, (Peter Dinklage) some treacherous alliance negotiating by Varys, (Conleth Hill) Dani embarks on to Westeros on her massive fleet. Joined by The Ironborn Greyjoys, the Dothraki Hoarde on ships claimed from Slavers, and with new support of what remains of House Tyrell and Dorne— the Mother Of Dragons is coming to Westeros— finally!! Took about as long as it took Frodo to get to Mount Doom. But that’s another book franchise.
Although her lineage and line to succession may be contested. As Bran (Isaac Hamstead Wright) is shown to have one final vision of the Season, all fan theories and years of assumptive ranting on the internet finally pay off! The true lineage of Jon Snow (Kit Harrington) is finally revealed to have been the son of Lyanna Stark, sister of Ned Stark (Sean Bean). While on her death bed, Lyanna whispers something to Ned, seemingly asking him to protect her son, causing Ned to claim him as his own bastard, instead of revealing his true father. Since Jon’s true father may be none other than Rhaegar Targaryn, this would make Jon Snow the true heir to the Throne of Westeros!
The revelation of this obviously have massive repercussions to the story. If Jon Snow is a Targaeryn by birth, born of a Stark mother, this makes him the rightful heir of the entire lands, given his lineage of two of the largest families of Westeros. The revelation scene was handled with such tragic subtlety that it was very heartfelt. The significance of the scene, along with seeing characters on screen together that we’ve only heard about thus far, was heartwarming. This, even though the actors themselves are playing younger versions of the characters we know. But that’s the impact of this scene, that exposes a heartbreaking suspicion held by fans worldwide for years.
These are one of the many reasons. that ‘Game Of Thrones‘ is as effective at building a relationship between the audience and it’s characters. While we learn of Jon Snow’s true parentage, the North rally behind him as their true king, and Lord of Winterfell, just in time to take on the White Walker army together. It’s an even more moving scene, as his bastard status is dismissed over his deeds, by peers of his father (or who he thinks is his father anyways) proclaiming him in the same position once held by Ned Stark.
This episode sees many mantles being taken over through succession. While Cersei took over her son’s throne, reclaiming her position of power for selfish reasons; Jon finally achieved acceptance as a Stark, by restoring honour to his family and home. The parallels between the two are extremely significant and could almost foreshadow what’s to come.
Arya Stark (Masie Williams) makes a glorious return to Westeros as she successfully gets revenge on the man who was responsible for the death of most of her family during the ‘Red Wedding’ episode. While on the other side of the world, Danaerys awaits her own glorious return to her home country, to take restore honour to her family name.
The Season 6 finale appropriately set the stage for the next season, possibly the end of the series, by tying up almost every storyline and loose ending that’s been left gaping wide open all other seasons. Barring one of two plot threads, (Theon’s uncle) almost every sub plot has intersected with the larger storylines, culminating in what will most likely be another epic Season next year.
The most effective part of ‘Game Of Thrones‘ right now is the history between all characters, the treacherous journeys of some, and the climax of all their stories being tangled within one another. There seem to be more than one antagonist, (Cersei, the Night King) and more than one protagonist as well, (Jon, Danaerys) while all seem to be at odds with one another. If Jon’s true lineage is to be believed, then that undermines all of Danaerys’ efforts.
So Season 7 of ‘Game Of Thrones’ should be an interesting as hell watch. The only downside of that we have to wait 10 months to another year for it.