GAME OF THRONES SEASON 8--Final Run-- Part 3

Istbor

Explorer
I do wonder how basically skeletons were able to punch their way through stone tombs. I think the whole crypt thing was unnecessary. I didn't see anyone of note die to them. Much better if they started pounding and howling/snarling, which scared the people down there into making a foolish decision to run out into the keep's yard or unbar the door. Maybe then there would have been some tension and drama as some survivors had to kill others hiding to protect the many.

I dunno.
 

MarkB

Hero
I didn't find their tactics partricularly stupid. It was a basic castle-defence plan of falling back by stages, and taking as many of the opposition out at each stage as possible.

The Dothraki were a mobile force, and temporarily powered-up with flame weapons. Having them make a lightning strike against the enemy frontline wasn't a terrible choice - the only other thing they'd have been good for was harrying the flanks once the armies were engaged, and there was simply no way to coordinate that in pitch darkness.

Lighting the trenches any earlier would've been counterproductive - they would have cut off the retreat of their main forces, and would've burned out half their fuel by the time the horde finished cutting through the Unsullied.

The pacing does get weird after the army breaches the walls, though. It goes from pitched battle in one scene, then when we next cut back it's all sneaking around in corridors. It feels like there was supposed to be something in between that would have slowed or diverted the horde's incursion, which we didn't get to see.

The really big thing which it felt like the battle was lacking, on the defending side, was a leader. With Jon and Danaerys off on dragonback, barely five words of dialogue between them, the rest of the forces were just these scattered little groups all fighting their own battles, mostly in quiet desperation.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
The visuals were absolutely phenomenal. Especially some of the dragon shots above the clouds, the dragon fight, the dragonfire. I heard some had trouble seeing what was going on because it was too dark, but I didn’t have any trouble.
 
The visuals were absolutely phenomenal. Especially some of the dragon shots above the clouds, the dragon fight, the dragonfire. I heard some had trouble seeing what was going on because it was too dark, but I didn’t have any trouble.
Well, my darkvision failed, so I had a hard time following what was going on even with all the lights turned off. My wife kept asking me "Who is that?" as scenes would shift.

I really could not follow the dragon fights. Take a lesson from D&D please and color-code them.
 

Zardnaar

Hero
I didn't find their tactics partricularly stupid. It was a basic castle-defence plan of falling back by stages, and taking as many of the opposition out at each stage as possible.

The Dothraki were a mobile force, and temporarily powered-up with flame weapons. Having them make a lightning strike against the enemy frontline wasn't a terrible choice - the only other thing they'd have been good for was harrying the flanks once the armies were engaged, and there was simply no way to coordinate that in pitch darkness.

Lighting the trenches any earlier would've been counterproductive - they would have cut off the retreat of their main forces, and would've burned out half their fuel by the time the horde finished cutting through the Unsullied.

The pacing does get weird after the army breaches the walls, though. It goes from pitched battle in one scene, then when we next cut back it's all sneaking around in corridors. It feels like there was supposed to be something in between that would have slowed or diverted the horde's incursion, which we didn't get to see.

The really big thing which it felt like the battle was lacking, on the defending side, was a leader. With Jon and Danaerys off on dragonback, barely five words of dialogue between them, the rest of the forces were just these scattered little groups all fighting their own battles, mostly in quiet desperation.
It's like the dumbest thing you do with light cavalry you use them on the flanks. Use missile weapons to soften them up.
 
I just watched it and I'm left with two simultaneous but conflicting feelings:

1) Extremely entertaining, dramatic and visually impressive. So many beautiful scenes (the dragons above the clouds! Drogon protecting the grieving Dany, etc).

But...

2) Highly disappointing, anti-climactic, and when examined beyond the surface level of 1, it had so many problems and was rather poorly put together, especially as a "penultimate climax" to an eight seasons series.

I'm left feeling that there was this 8 year build up that led to very little pay-off, except for sheer spectacle and drama. It was like getting to know someone who you realized that, in the end, wasn't nearly as deep or complex as you originally thought. I'm particularly disappointed to the degree that there was no real exposition or revelation about the Night King and White Walkers, or Bran for that matter.

On the other hand, I guess it is the process that counts. The series was a great ride, and perhaps that was the problem: it would be difficult to create a climax that could do it justice, and at least so far (still only halfway through the last season), it didn't come close.
 
One thing that surprised me is how much of a role Melisandre had - not just the fire, but giving Arya that extra little inspiration. I kind of like how this rather monstrous person ended up being someone who was monstrous because it served a greater purpose: sort of a dark twist on the end justifying the means.
 

Zardnaar

Hero
How is this for a thought. We have been watching a prequel and the events depicted are told by old Sam or Bran to the Prince That Was Promised.

They might also abolish the throne.

Anti climatic a little, decent CGI porn though. Hardhome and the Battle of the Bastards were better IMHO.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
One thing I didn’t get — what did the brown eyes, green eyes, blue eyes thing mean?
 

pukunui

Adventurer
Mixed feelings for me, too. I enjoyed the spectacle overall but am also feeling let down. The White Walkers and their existential threat was my favourite part of the show. This was not the ending I was expecting. All I can hope for is that the supposed prequel series will flesh out their (back)story more.

Random thoughts:
  • Sam, Brienne, Pod, Jaime, and probably also Grey Worm and Tormund ought to be dead.
  • Aside from being Westeros’ living memory, what is the point of Bran having magic powers? He doesn’t ever seem to do anything useful with them any more. Was his “creation” of Hodor the only pay-off we’ll get for his apparent ability to affect the past, or will there be more? Why didn’t he warg into Ghost or something to help with the fight?
  • The dead Starks in the crypt *did* rise but no one of any consequence even had to fight one, let alone get hurt or killed by one. Also, despite this theory being correct, Dany’s reference to the dead already being there *was* just her stating the obvious. What a waste of a line.
  • Theon did a great job defending Bran. Why did he stupidly charge the Night King? Why didn’t he stay where he was? I think it would’ve been better if he’d been able to spar with the Night King long enough for Arya to sneak up on him (instead of having her literally get the drop on him out of nowhere — was she hiding in a tree or had she magically turned into wind to get past the white walkers?)
  • The walkers used smart tactics and let their grunts do the dirty work while they stayed safely in the rear but ultimately lost. The living used idiotic tactics, and led from the front, and somehow still managed to win.
  • Would I be correct in thinking that the main / named characters are among the only ones who survived? Most, if not all, of the Wildlings, Unsullied, Dothraki, Ironborn, Knights of the Vale, and Northern bannermen (and civilians) are dead, right? Cersei’s choice to stay behind and fight whoever emerges victorious in the North seems like it was the smart choice after all, which doesn’t seem right.

One thing I didn’t get — what did the brown eyes, green eyes, blue eyes thing mean?
That dates back to season 3, when Melisandre came to take Gendry away from the Brotherhood. She looked into Arya’s eyes and said she could see brown eyes, blue eyes, and green eyes, all closed forever.
 
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One thing I didn’t get — what did the brown eyes, green eyes, blue eyes thing mean?
I think she was emphasizing blue eyes, that Arya had already killed people with brown and green eyes, but blue was still to come - meaning, wights, White Walkers, and the Night King. It was foreshadowing that Arya would kill the Night King.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Huh. Lots of people have brown, green, or blue eyes. My eyes are blue. Maybe she meant me?
 

pukunui

Adventurer
What color eyes does Cersei have? I hope that Arya is the one to kill her and that she gets to use her Faceless powers to do it, like she did with Walder Frey. (Surely that bit of revenge was not the whole pay-off for her side quest to gain that ability.)

Also, who thinks Bronn will actually try to kill Jaime and/or Tyrion? I know he’s a mercenary but he’s seems to genuinely like both of them. Will he go through with it, or will he side with them against Cersei?
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
What color eyes does Cersei have? I hope that Arya is the one to kill her and that she gets to use her Faceless powers to do it, like she did with Walder Frey. (Surely that bit of revenge was not the whole pay-off for her side quest to gain that ability.)

Also, who thinks Bronn will actually try to kill Jaime and/or Tyrion? I know he’s a mercenary but he’s seems to genuinely like both of them. Will he go through with it, or will he side with them against Cersei?
I kind of feel like Jaime, Tyrion, and Cersei need their own showdown. That family dynamic needs a payoff.

Heh. Maybe Arya will change her face, come Cersei, and rule Westeros!
 

Imaculata

Adventurer
I enjoyed the episode, but the battle tactics were very poor. You'd think given how much they already knew about the Whitewalkers, that they'd focus on taking them out. But apart from having Bran in the godswood, there seemed to be very little strategy to taking them out. The Nightking being downed from his dragon seemed more of a convient outcome rather than a deliberate tactic.

Also, why sacrifice the Dothraki in total darkness, when you are defending a castle?! Just hide behind the castle walls and let them come. There was also no use of flaming oil, which is just unrealistic. I'm a bit underwhelmed by how the Nightking met his end, and I was really expecting some sort of a twist... but no, it was all very straight forward.

I honestly didn't think the dead in the crypts would be brought back to life, because it would be so stupid for them to not think of that... but I guess they are just a bunch of idiots.

As for entertainment value, it was fun. I was surprised by how few characters actually died. It was a shame everything was so terribly dark too. It was really hard to see who was fighting what.
 
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Kaodi

Adventurer
On the contrary - I think Theon charging the Night King was the *only* reasonable thing to do. The undead had him and Bran completely surrounded. They had stopped. Clearly the Night King, being an arrogant son of an obsidian shard, has some sense of drama. If Theon had waited the guy would probably just get bored and have his unlimited zombies kill Theon. But he gave him an opening to take his shot and Theon took it. He had to.

The one other thing that bothered me that I am not sure was ever in the books... They make it seem that dragonglass and Valyrian steel are undead "disrupting" weapons rather than white walker "bane" weapons. Yes, Arya kills the Night King with the Valyrian steel dagger, as it should be, but everywhere else they make it seem like they just allow you to kill wights as if they were still alive. Mormont stabbing the giant in the eye and killing it looked cool, but being stabbed should have been inconsequential.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
These are the two scenes that bugged me the most(my biggest peeve was the lighting).

1. The Dothraki charge.

Jon: "Hey guys. We have the best cavalry in the world. I have an idea! First we put them outside at night on horseback in the snow and ice. Then Melisandre will light their swords on fire so what little vision they had goes away. Then we will send them charging out into the darkness and hope they don't all die in a horse slipping and crashing disaster, on their way to confront an enemy they can't see, don't know the numbers of, and don't quite know the location of. Oh, and the enemy can see in the dark. Then, the rest of the army will just hang back and watch! It will be great! Much better than lining the walls with them and their horse bows to shoot the dead when they come into sight."

Everyone else: "Sounds good to us."

2. The Night King's death.

I didn't mind Arya killing the Night King. I didn't like how fast he went from bad ass to dead. What I think should have been done is to spread out his white walkers among the dead as commanders. You could have had them facing off against leaders. I mean, how cool would it have been to have Jorah die defending Dany from a white walker. They could have killed each other simultaneously or something. Have others kicking ass. Then the Night King could have walked up to Theon who was the last person defending Bran and killed Theon that way, instead of having Theon stupidly charge the Night King and six or seven white walkers in order to not slow them down at all. After Theon dies and the Night King is going to kill Bran, Jon comes charging in and they get into a bad ass fight. Perhaps they wound each other a few times before Jon slips and falls, losing his sword. Just before the Night King plunges his sword down into Jon's chest, No One comes out of nowhere from behind and plunges her valyrian steel dagger into the Night Kings heart by stabbing him just under the arm pit.

That's how a BBEG should die. Not some 2 second now I'm undead and now I'm not.

Other than those two scenes, I loved the episode. It had some other minor issues, but those are fine.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
I enjoyed the episode, but the battle tactics were very poor. You'd think given how much they already knew about the Whitewalkers, that they'd focus on taking them out. But apart from having Bran in the godswood, there seemed to be very little strategy to taking them out. The Nightking being downed from his dragon seemed more of a convient outcome rather than a deliberate tactic.

Also, why sacrifice the Dothraki in total darkness, when you are defending a castle?! Just die behind the castle walls and let them come.
Dothraki don't do tactics. They rush and overwhelm the enemy - it's all they know. This is the first enemy that has ever not worked against.
 

Kaodi

Adventurer
Oh yeah, I also tend to think the Dothraki charge was dumb. In real life, as far as I know, much of the power of cavalry charges come from its ability to break lines through a combination of fear and momentum. The Dothraki charged headlong into a literally *wall* of undead, and the only thing that accomplishes is being surrounded by zombies and quickly dying to their counterattack. They should not have even attempted that without knowing what the enemy battle lines actually looked like.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Dothraki don't do tactics. They rush and overwhelm the enemy - it's all they know. This is the first enemy that has ever not worked against.
Pretty sure they don't do it at night, though. They know better than that. And they would have realized that snow and ice are even more slippery.
 

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