That was a wild installment, right?
Game of Thrones Season 6 Episode 9 gave our panelists a lot to discuss in the wake of the battle of the bastards.
TV Fanatics Meg Bonney, Jim Garner, Caralynn Lippo and Paul Dailly discuss Littlefinger showing up, Rickon's death and Sansa's dark side.
What did you think of the battles?
Meg: I liked that we were given more of a real and scary take on it. It was like we were right there in the thick ofit, not just watching from the sidelines. I think it gave us a real take on it. It was gory, chaotic, scary and bloody, just like a real battle would be.
Jim: I agree with Meg, that was very visceral and gave a "no hold" view of what a battle of that magnitude must have felt like.
Caralynn: I mean, the production value was seriously impressive. Particularly in the Battle of the Bastards. There were so many extras, horses, gallons of fake blood and gore, etc. It was cinematic in scale. The battle at Meereen, while shorter and not so much of a battle, was also really cool. I always like seeing Daenerys actually put those dragons to use rather than keeping them in storage.
Paul: They were fantastic. They were better than anything most big budget movies could come up with!
Were you surprised that Littlefinger showed up to save the day?
Meg: No, I was expecting that but it was still great to see. It was such a huge sigh of relief. Sansa grew up in the thick of these things and it has really given her an edge, which is great. Her smirk as Littlefinger's army hit the Bolton army was perfect.
Jim: Nope, I wasn't surprised at all. Little Finger has been playing both sides against the middle and this was his chance to see one side fall.
Caralynn: Not at all. It was a bit disappointingly predictable. I think we all expected that someone would ride in and save the day (they made it very clear that Jon and Sansa couldn't win with the numbers they had, and no one thought that Jon would lose/die again). Littlefinger was the most obvious choice of deus ex machina.
Paul: That was glaringly obvious, but it was great to see the look on Ramsey's face. He thought he had won, but he was totally wrong!
React to Rickon's death.
Meg: That was sad but also expected. Jon knew that Ramsey was crazy but I think seeing it and feeling it made him even more amped for that battle. I was still secretly hoping that he would have an ace up his sleeve and somehow get out of it, but that never happened.
Jim: ♪♫♪ Dum, dum, dum, "another one bites the dust.. ♪♫♪
Caralynn: Yes, definitely expected. Sansa literally said "We're never going to get him back," and she knew Ramsey better than anyone. And she was right. I can't really understand why Rickon didn't just lay flat on the field when he saw Jon riding over to him? To, you know, avoid Ramsey's arrows? The manner of his death was slightly ridiculous.
Paul: This was another predictable development. He should have tried zig zagging across the grass!
What are your thoughts on that big Daenerys dragon scene?
Meg: I love the dragon scenes. It really showed how powerful she/they have become. She has always been a threat but now she a force that nobody in Westeros (or beyond) will be able to rival.
Jim: I loved it.. Watching the dragons turn a large ship into burning, floating debris in seconds was truly awesome. Many of us have wait a long time.
Caralynn: Big fan of dragon scenes! Those dragons are really underutilized. I think the big problem I have with Daenerys is that SHE HAS DRAGONS. She can literally do whatever the heck she wants. DRAGONS. That's what makes her whole storyline feel unnecessarily dragged out. She could have done everything she needed to do in order to take Westeros in like 2 season maximum, with the dragon advantage.
Paul: It was AMAZING! Seeing all of the dragons together was fantastic. They really knocked it out of the park.
Was Ramsey's death at the hands of Sansa fitting?
Meg: Oh my stars, YES! I was so happy that Jon didn't kill him. Sansa deserved that moment but it also showed just how much she has changed. She didn't kill him herself, but she knew it would happen. I love that Sansa has gone a little darker. I also think that it was a super sweet moment of justice to have the dogs carry out the act after what he did to his baby brother.
Jim: I didn't think Sansa really killed him, I figured that Jon set it up so that Sansa could get her justice/vengeance. As Meg pointed out, Sansa's gone a little dark. The smile at the end when she was walking away was pretty scary and awesome. Oh, and thank gawd he is gone!
Caralynn: It was fitting but was also ominous. Sansa has gone very dark. It's scary but thrilling. I suspect she'll "break bad" with Littlefinger now.
Paul: YES! After everything he put her through, it was great that she got to take him out once and for all.
Daenerys and the Greyjoys have a common goal. React.
Meg: I love them together! This show has always had all of the different factions in their own story so it's super fun to see them mingle into other people's story. I think that Yara and Daenerys will be great friends and allies. I absolutely love it.
Jim: Agreed Meg, Yara and Daeni very quickly found they liked each other and respected each other. I also loved Daeni's reference to everyone in the room having bastards for fathers. While most of us assume Tywin for Tyrion, I personally think he's related to Daenerys.
Caralynn: I was a big fan of that meeting and Daenerys had approximately 40x the chemistry with Yara in that five-minute scene than she's had with either version of Daario in four seasons. Since Daenerys is obviously the lynchpin of the entire titular game of thrones, it's always great to see her actually making moves that will get her to Westeros and closer to her goal of overtaking the seven kingdoms.
Paul: Daenerys and Yara are probably the most unlikely duo on the show. The chemistry was off the charts.
Predict how you think next week's finale will play out.
Meg:I am worried that a major player will die. I think that we will see Dany finally make her journey to King's Landing. I also think that Cersai will use wild fire to blow up the crazy religious people that have gripped the city and I think the King will die. It's just not super clear who the next king will be if he does. I think Jon and Sansa will have a bit of a pause but then get a raven from Bran or something to connect those two stories. And Brienne and Jamie will ride off into the sunset and escape all of this drama. Ok, maybe not that last one.
Jim: I'm not sure how it will play out, but I like a lot of what Meg threw out there. Can I be the wild card and vote for Yara and Daeni ending up together as Westeros' first power couple featuring both women?
Caralynn: If Dany finds some other reason not to head off to Westeros yet, I WILL LOSE IT. I'm tired of waiting. She needs to make her move now that she has the fleet she needs and the momentum. I don't think Arya and Bran will reunite with Jon and Sansa until next season at least. Something big will happen in Kings Landing since they've been left off/not the focus recently. Perhaps Tommen's death or, like Meg said, something crazy with Cersei.
Paul: Cersei is going to argue her case to the death, while secretly plotting her escape from King's Landing. Margaery's true motives will be revealed. Daenerys will begin her trip to Westeros.
What did you think of the episode?
Hit the comments below!
Note: Game of Thrones Season 6 Episode 10 airs Sunday June 26 on HBO
Paul Dailly is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.