It would almost be too obvious to sit here and review this last series. Although given that I have not yet watched the Finale it would be pretty pointless.
Plus I am sure there will be a fair few S08 reviews in the blogosphere so why add another.
Instead I am going to review the whole blinking lot for you lucky people. Please note if you have not watched any of GOT, this will contain *SPOILERS* you’ve been warned.
I refuse to pick a favourite, or even try and order these. You can’t make me, I won’t do it! They all hold an equal place in my heart.
He has all the makings for a horrible character. But he is so far from this scary giant-like killer that we first think him to be. The term gentle giant comes to mind but for me it’s about his quick wit, his cheeky smile and the genuine relationships he has developed with characters that he’d have no love for as a wildling. His feelings for Brienne and the way in which he portrayed this for the viewer was a touch of genius. He provided some much needed light in otherwise dark and often depressing episodes.
I have read that a lot of this was ad-libbed, Kristofer Hivju found her genuinely bewitching. I could have a look and see if this is true but I think I prefer to hope it is. From what I have seen of him in real life he seems to mirror his character which means that he has been able to put his own stamp on Tormund. I heart eye emoji this guy so much!
A character review wouldn’t be complete without Kit Harington’s portrayal of Jon Snow or Aegon Targaryen as we now know his true identity.
From the very start he appeared to be the most like his father Ned despite being an outcast thanks to Catelyn Stark. He has this moral compass that sees him constantly striving to do the right thing despite being one of GOT’s greatest fighters (and killers!) He fast became a favourite amongst the other characters which made him a natural leader. I have certainly been cheering him on from the start. He is in the Hero category for me. Plus you know you’re in for a good scene when the music begins to play, the focus is on Jon and they give the impression his hearing is muffled. Always a sign something mega is coming!
I couldn’t not include this bad ass! She is mildly irritating but she is a dark horse. Her journey for revenge began so long ago, episode 2 actually when her friend the butchers boy got it! She has fought so hard to get to where she is now and I can’t help but be in awe of her.
I was not a fan of the Faces faze shall we call it but without it, Walder Frey would not have got what he deserved and she would not be the character she is now.
I do feel a bit traumatised by the scene with her and Gendry though!
I feel like I shouldn’t like him for plenty of reasons, The Bran thing, the sleeping with his sister thing and the leaving Brienne thing! But I can’t help it.
His loyalty to Cersei means he is constantly trying to find a new way to upset every other character, double crossing so and so. But he has constantly delivered as a character. He has been bloody minded in his quest to protect her most evil ways.
What I love most about Jamie though is his relationship with Brother Tyrion. I am glad to see that his family loyalty does extend past his incestuous relationship with Sister Cersei. He is probably the only reason Tyrion is still alive today.
Because no list would be complete without this guy! What an absolute legend. And if you can get past the questionable English accent, certainly of early days, then he is certainly a fan favourite.
For me he personifies ‘Heart of a lion’ despite his distain for his family following years of abuse at their hands. He is so strong in character and his knowledge, other than Jamie, is probably the main reason he is still with us today.
He is funny and charming and connects with his fellow characters on a level different to most. Particularly him and Bronn. He is honest and driven for the side of good. I do wonder if he is only loyal to the cause if the cause is to topple him evil family.
He has made the whole series a lot funnier, light hearted but is a very believable character. Peter Dinklage is just wonderful in this role and I think without him GOT would be seriously lacking something.
The Onion Knight. What a truly exceptional man. From his smuggler days to Hand of Stannis Baratheon. Although we have not witnessed this journey in great detail we have seen him remain loyal to the Iron Throne.
He has from the offset been able to deliver the most wonderfully inspiring speeches which in many cases have been able to smooth over some tricky situations and change the course of some major plots. When he steps up to speak, I know we are in for a moving and honest plea from him.
His beautiful relationship with Shireen was heartbreaking knowing what became of her. He adored that girl as if she was his own. He was her only friend in a world that had her hidden away. And because of her, we saw a side of Davos that otherwise remained unseen, His hatred for Melisandre. I honestly think if she had not walked off to her own death, he’d of sought revenge for poor Shireen.
Now he may not have survived very long in GOT but his legacy is still felt throughout. He is certainly very present through all of his children, including Jon Snow.
All he had taught them over the years has helped to shape the people they are now, and for that we have to be grateful to this short lived character.
Plus he was the first central character who died. This was the first time I realised that when it comes to GOT, expect the unexpected. The good guys are supposed to survive so to see him lose his head was shocking but changed the way I viewed GOT for good.
This guy is just so damn cool!! He seems to have just a few simple pleasures in life, Women, money, killing and being bloody hilarious! He is definitely the anti-hero.
He is loyal for sure, but this loyalty doesn’t go beyond his own selfish needs. But his friendships on screen are some of my favourite GOT moments. His merciless teasing of Podrick, Tyrion and Jamie make for some of the most lighthearted scenes.
Plus he has some of the greatest one liners “Look at these two shining warriors, Ser Teryn Mant and Ser Whatsit of Whocares” being one of my most memorable.
I also really like the story that he dated Cersei actress Lena Headey back in the day and it did not end well for the pair and she refused to be anywhere near him. And actually looking back it is not often I recall seeing them on the screen at the same time. And despite him currently on a Cersei mission, it is always a message delivered by someone else!
He should be in this list purely for his one liners and the perfect cutting delivery of them. But he is in this list because he is the character I feel is the most misunderstood.
He has a clearly terrible relationship with his family and this has left him bitter, twisted and hateful. But if you can look past all that, then he is clearly not the man we see on the surface. He has, since series one tried to protect the stark girls as if they were his own. He has developed an unspoken love and certainly a respect for them. It offered to me, some of the most sincere moments throughout the show. His little Bird. Some of thos later scenes reduced me to a sobbing wreck.
This was a tough one, I felt a bad guy had to make my (non) list. It was a tough one between Ramsay and Joffery. Joffery felt too obvious.
Ramsay, well he came to us as this angelic looking character who was sworn to protect Theon. And although we were pissed at Theon, we were still rooting for him. What we actually got was the most sadistic kind of character.
His obsession with causing pain and suffering made Joffery look like an extra in some soft kids program. From hunting down his prey, to torturing and dismembering Theon and his savage rape of Sansa he was evil personified.
With all the negatives though it is difficult to class him in the favourite character category, but he made the list because of all of these things. Because of all he offered to the viewer. He was such an integral part of the story for a long time and we were all desperate to see him get what he deserved. And boy did he!
He was so believable in this role which is why he made it in. Scary, creepy and mentally unstable, his quest for his Fathers approval drove him wild. And for that I kind admire him and all he bought to GOT.
Just a few other notables….
I feel that there are a few that deserve a nod but not a full award in this post.
Olenna Tyrell was just awesome!
Shae was such a powerful character, greatly underestimated in my mind. Her protective nature for Sansa and of course Tyrion made for some great interaction.
Euron Greyjoy, I really wanted to punch him in the face but his impact in such a short time is admirable. He was kinda cool as hell and his arrogance was the perfect partnering for Cersei.
Greatest death scenes
Oberyn Martell – Who knew how sickeningly satisfying it would be to see someone’s head explode?!
Tywin Lannister – Shot on the toilet, that is Karma right there! An epic scene built over years of resentment on both sides, delivered perfectly by Peter Dinklage and Charles Dance.
Hodor – This might be the first death that left me in tears (common occurrence now!) Hold the door will be a line I remember forever. He was so strong and so loyal to Bran to the very end.
Olenna Tyrell – OK so we didn’t see her actual death, we didn’t need to. What was more important was the dialect between her and Jamie at the end. Wonderfully delivered By Diana Rigg.
“Tell Cersei. I want her to know it was me.”
Jon Snow – Scrap Hodor, the first time I cried over a death was in fact Jon’s. I never saw it coming and I had not prepared for it at all. His betrayal by some of the nights watch was bad enough but to see Olly deliver the final blow was tough viewing. Although I guess that had been bubbling away for some time.
Thank god for Melisandre!
Walder Frey – Oh he was so GONNA get it! Following the red wedding his death was inevitable surely. But its delivery finally made the tiresome Faces faze worth while!
The Hound – It was hard enough when I thought he was done for after battling with Brienne and being left to suffer by traveling partner, Ayra.
Instead to watch him walk to his final battle with Brother, The Mountain was harrowing viewing. I knew it had to be this way but watching him fall to a firey death made me feel so sad for him.
Ned Stark – Now as beheading goes this one was pretty shocking. Ned was a pivotal character, surely they’d never actually kil.. Oh yep they did! This turned GOT on its head for me and showed that anything could happen to anyone at anytime. Exciting stuff really!
Petyr Baelish – Finally seeing Littlefinger get what has been coming to him for so long was fantastic. Seeing him grovel and watch that smug smirk disappear from his snivelly face was a reward in itself.
Cersei and Jame Lannister – I had hoped that we’d be offered something a little more exciting than death by falling set. Jamie was already a dead man walking thanks to Euron and I felt that Cersei needed him to die in front of her so she truly felt alone. But I am not as sadistic as she, but certainly more evil than the scriptwriters who saw fit to have a very low key killing. The impact of this for me was not felt until Tyrion uncovered them in the final episode and my heart broke. Seeing these two people who despite all their flaws truly loved each other, lying in each others arms. It felt very fitting that they left this world how they came in to it.
Danerys Targareyn – I’ve been waiting on this for a LONG time and they delivered. It was a scene full of love and heartbreak but also just the right amount of *shock* I loved the fact that for a minute I was not sure who had stabbed who.
I’ll be honest though, when Drogon came to mourn for his ‘Mother’ it nearly bloody broke me! I think it was the first time I really got the Mother/Child bond from them.
Best GOT scenes
Rather than looking at a whole episode, I thought I’d look at my ultimate scenes.
1. S07 E07 The Dragon and the Wolf – Cersei meets a white Walker for the first time. I think it may have been the first time we saw genuine fear from her. It was pretty terrifying for us hardened walker fans.
2.S01 E10 – Fire and Blood – Seeing Danerys emerge unscathed and cradling 3 live dragons was something else. As I had no idea about the books, I really didn’t see this one coming at all. It took this story to a whole new level for me.
3.S5 E01 – The Wars to come – The mercy killing of Mance Rayder was Jon at his most honorable. He had so much respect for Mance that he refused to see him suffer. It was a key moment in the Wildling story and for convincing them Jon Snow was a man to follow.
4. S5 E10 – Mother’s Mercy – Poor trusting Myrcella Baratheon, she sealed her fate with a kiss. I am so glad that she offered Jamie the acceptance as her Father that he so desperately wanted before she passed away. Another tragic but very clever loss for Cersei, And Jamie of course.
5.S07 E07 – The Dragon and the Wolf – This episode had so much going for it but visually, seeing the wall being destroyed by the Night kings newest dead recruit was phenomenal. Our surround sound meant I felt like I was right on top of the wall as it collapsed around me.
6. S01 E05 – The wolf and the lion – This scene between Robert and Wife Cersei was perfectly simple. It gave you a real idea of their life together and a stripped back dialogue between 2 characters that shared so much but seemed to hate one an other so greatly. It would appear, to be a look in to the future of GOT as well, Don’t believe me, Go and chek it out Here
7. S04 E10 – The Children – Brienne VS The Hound. Wow! The scenery alone makes this a visual masterpiece, but seeing these 2 powerhouses battle it out and assuming the worst for the Hound made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. I really didn’t want either of them to come to harm. In fact I think i’d of liked it if they took a shine to each other following a good beating on both sides! But can’t have it all hey?
8. S06 E08 – No one – I love Tyrion and seeing him try to encourage Grey worm and Missandei to drink and crack jokes has to be one of the funniest scenes of all time.
9. S04 EP8 – The Mountain and the Viper – This truly shocking (but exceedingly good) episode needed a little humanity to it. Bought to us this time in the form of Jamie and Tyrion heartfelt conversation before his Trial by combat. Smash the Bettle being a particular highlight for me. They do love a good, honest heart to heart these brothers.
10. S07 E06 – Beyond the wall – The highlight of this episode for me, was seeing an unlikely grouping surrounded by White walkers, with no possible escape.
Jon Snow and his band of merry men, The hound, Jorah, Tormund, Beric, Thoros and Gendry (what?!?!) were on the hunt for a White walker to take to Queen Cersei. Their efforts seemed pointless when they became stranded. Right on queue a Dragon riding Denarys turns up and saves the day, at the cost of a Dragon though.
Without that Dragon, we may not have had the wonderful collapse of the wall episode so it was a fair swap in my eyes. 3 dragons is just greedy Dany!
11. S03 E09 – The Rains of Castamere – The red wedding- who knew that’s not what that episode was called??
In terms of shockers, this had it all! We thought Roose Bolton was on our side, the double crossing Lannister lover, and everyone else got it. Poor Robb.
Walder Frey was just perfect for this moment, he was so determined to gain the respect of people, he was seen as a bit of a joke, after this moment even I have to admit that I found a new level of respect for him. Never underestimate the Frey!
12. S04 E02 – The Lion and The Rose -Joffery’s Death, like that couldn’t get a mention. One of the most deserved for sure and just the right amount of gore.
I loved that at this point we had no idea who had done it. Could it have been Sansa? Or was it in fact Tyrion? Who knew but it was great to see him fall!
13. S06 E09 – The battle of the Bastards – Oh yeah like this could have been left out! The Good guy Vs the ultimate bad guy.
Ramsay is no fighter, far from it the coward. Jon on the other hand, after seeing Rickon (don’t run in a straight line you damn fool!) killed, thought he could take them on single handed, and he would have done were it not for his loyal followers, they got your back Jon. And thank god for the Vale, because you’d of been fed to Ramsay’s dogs Snow! Instead your savior sister made sure the dogs were well fed that night.
14. S08 E03 – Battle of Winterfell – Yes OK it was dark but come on, what did you really expect? It’s Winter, it’s dark by 4pm! It would give a really short window for an epic fight scene if they had to do it in the day time!
And without the dark, we would not have had some of the most visually magnificent moments that this episode bought us. The Dothraki swords being lit up by the Red Woman … wow! Denarys and her dragons destroying the dead in a blaze of glory and the wonderful moment the Red Woman set fire to the trench around the castle. It was moments like this that had me on the edge of my seat for the whole episode.
15. S06 E10 – The Winds of Winter – She’s a dark horse that Cersei, but we should know that she’d never have let them punish her for her evil ways.
The smug face should have told us what was coming…
Watching the high sparrow get what he deserved though, it left me wanting to cheer Cersei!
Wildfire is freaking awesome!
16. S04 E06 – The laws of Gods and Men – Oh Tyrion, you never fail to deliver. His ultimate moment came when he was put on trial for Joffrey’s murder.
I really felt for him as we all knew he hadn’t done it but that he’d be found guilty anyway, and at the time the viewer and Tyrion had no idea what the outcome would be.
And his poor heartbreaking when Shae took the stand! Oh it gave me all the feels!
“I did not kill Joffrey, but I wish I had! Watching your vicious bastard die gave me more relief than a thousand lying whores! I wish I was the monster you think I am! I wish I had enough poison for the whole pack of you! I would gladly give my life to watch you all swallow it!”
17. S01 E01 – Winter is coming
Bran’s fall from the tower right back at the beginning is now more significant than ever.
It was also the first time we saw what was really going on behind Lannister doors! It was shocking. More importantly, we were shown just how far Jamie was willing to go for his love of Cersei.
“The things I do for Love.”
– Jamie Lannister
18. S02 E09 – Blackwater
I was desperate for Tyrion to have a plan, I didn’t really want the Lannister’s to win but I was 100% behind this brave Tyrion we were watching.
With his faithful Bron in place what went down was the most spectacular bit of CGI we’d seen so far.
I can still remember the surround sound system making the whole room come to life, the sofa vibrated and the sound of explosions echoed.
It was breathtaking, even if it did help the Lannister’s to win the battle.
19. S05 E10 – Mother’s Mercy
Cersei’s walk of atonement, now if you’re anything like me, you’d probably been waiting to see Cersei get some sort of comeuppance for her evil ways and this walk of shame was just what she needed.
It was only when I watched it that I felt a sudden flicker of sympathy for her. The sign of a great character I guess.
It made for uncomfortable but compelling viewer and was the first time we saw Cersei alone and scared. And if only she knew that while that was going on, her daughter was about to die. Not a great day even by GOT standards!
20. S04 E08 The mountain and the viper
Now of all the great lines he had to deliver this is my favourite (and cleanest) and it is an absolute highlight. Watching it back just on YouTube and it still makes me laugh.
“Who would pass the Bloody gate? The bloody Hound!”
And that’s it. Actually it. There is no more. I have of course watched the final episode now and I know there has been a huge amount of controversy around it, so I will add my opinion in.
In the words of Ramsay Bolton
“If you think this has a happy ending, you haven’t been paying attention”
As simple as that really. But I do think this was the happy ending we needed. Yes Dany’s dead but that needed to happen. Sansa is the queen she always wanted to be, Arya is free from her demons, Samwell is going to be a father again, Jon is reunited with Tormund and hopefully will now be the King beyond the wall and Bran has finally been wheeled in from the cold.
I know we all had our own conclusions in mind but that’s because it was a series we’d all been so invested in from day one. They couldn’t possibly satisfy all our needs.
I’m sad it’s over, but I’m thankful for all that has come, all we’ve experienced and for the best television and characters we could hope for.
And now their watch is ended……
What are your highlights? Were you happy with the ending or do you feel cheated by it?
Have I missed any classic moments that made it for you?