To get right down to the story, I wasn't all that upset to see Ygritte die. Chances are she would have killed Jon Snow - which would have been a far more grievous loss to the series - and even if not, her lethal arrows might well have won the battle on this night for the deadly hordes. True, she did hesitate for a moment to let loose her arrow on Snow, and that in retrospect saved his life, but her side was out to destroy what's left of civilization to the south, which is something I don't want to see.
Meanwhile, we were also treated to the best scene with Maester Aemon in the series so far, in a conversation with Samwell, who also had a sterling episode, including that long kiss. It's refreshing and satisfying seeing an entire episode devoted to one thread of this complex tapestry, which makes me think that maybe Game of Thrones should do this more often.
On the other hand, we're still left not knowing Tyrion's fate, and we saw nothing of Daenerys, Arya, Bran, Brienne, and other notables this episode. With just one more hour to this season, it's a safe bet that most of those stories won't be wrapped up, and maybe none of them at all.
And there's still the story of Jon Snow. It was a good move having Snow go out on his own to find Mance - he's right that that's the only way the South can possibly avoid a devastating conquest - but it's hard to see what Snow can do to convince the implacable Mance from pulling back his attack, which means all that this might result in is Snow's death, after all.
This has been my favorite season of Game of Thrones - the last few episodes in particular have been really outstanding - and I'm looking forward to next week.
See also Games of Thrones Season 4 Premiere: Salient Points ... Game of Thrones 4.2: Whodunnit? ... Game of Thrones 4.3: Who Will Save Tyrion ...Game of Thrones 4.4: Glimpse of the Ultimate Battle ... Game of Thrones 4.6: Tyrion on Trial ... Game of Thrones 4.8: Beetles and Battle
And see also Game of Thrones Back in Play for Season 2 ... Game of Thrones 2.2: Cersei vs. Tyrion
And see also A Game of Thrones: My 1996 Review of the First Novel ... Game of Thrones Begins Greatly on HBO ... Game of Thrones 1.2: Prince, Wolf, Bastard, Dwarf ... Games of Thrones 1.3: Genuine Demons ... Game of Thrones 1.4: Broken Things ... Game of Thrones 1.5: Ned Under Seige ... Game of Thrones 1.6: Molten Ever After ... Games of Thrones 1.7: Swiveling Pieces ... Game of Thrones 1.8: Star Wars of the Realms ... Game of Thrones 1.9: Is Ned Really Dead? ... Game of Thrones 1.10 Meets True Blood
And here's a Spanish article in Semana, the leading news magazine in Colombia, in which I'm quoted about explicit sex on television, including on Game of Thrones.
And see "'Game of Thrones': Why the Buzz is So Big" article in The Christian Science Monitor, 8 April 2014, with my quotes.
Also: CNN article, "How 'Game of Thrones' Is Like America," with quote from me
"I was here, in Carthage, three months from now."