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Sunday, April 28, 2019

Game of Thrones 8.3: Fighting Death

The great battle came early in the final season of Game of Thrones - 8.3 - and it was stunningly worth the short wait.  In real life, you can't beat death - at least, not ultimately - though sometimes your words and works can, like Shakespeare's and John Lennon's.   But in high fantasy, complete victory over death, though hard fought and costly, can happen.

It didn't happen for everyone tonight.  The saddest deaths were Jorah's and Theon's and Lyanna's.  I hope there weren't others that I missed in the flames and the killing frost (I especially hope not Sam's or the direwolf's).  The most satisfying was of course the Night King's, epitomizing Shelley's observation that "tis death that's dead".  And seeing Arya do it was one of the high points of the series.   The best I can understand of how she was able to do it was her own prowess combined with the Night King's fixation on Bran distracted him at a crucial moment.  And/or maybe Bran actively helped distract him.

The Night King's death means all of his dead puppets are now dead dead - gone - as well.  Most importantly, that includes the blue-spewing dragon.  But one of the good dragons - I think - was killed by the Night King's minions, too.   So that leaves Daenerys and Jon with just one dragon to share.

And they'll need it in the fight looming ahead with Cersei.  The ranks of the legitimate heirs to the Seven Kingdoms have been depleted by the battle tonight.  Fewer heroes abound.  Even Melisandre and her fiery magic are gone.  In a more conventional narrative, the battle with Cersei would have come before the battle with the Night King.  Hats off to Game of Thrones for reversing this order, and leaving us wondering tonight how the battle with Cersei could possibly top what we saw on HBO this evening,

And see also Game of Thrones 6.1: Where Are the Dragons ... Game of Thrones 6.2: The Waking ... Game of Thrones 6.5: Origin of a Name ... Game of Thrones 6.6: The Exhortation ... Game of Thrones 6.7: Giveth and Taketh ... Game of Thrones 6.8: Strategic Advantage ... Game of Thrones 6.9: A Night for the Light ... Game of Thrones Season 6 Finale: That Library

And see also Game of Thrones 5.1: Unsetting the Table ... Game of Thrones 5.8: The Power of Frigid Death ... Game of Thrones 5.9: Dragon in Action; Sickening Scene with Stannis ... Game of Thrones Season 5 Finale: Punishment

And 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 ...Game of Thrones 4.9: The Fight for Castle Black ... Games of Thrones Season 4 Finale: Woven Threads

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 ..."

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