Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones Review: Just Enough Story to Get on with the Battle

Dan O'Halloran | 10 Jun 2014 14:00
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Meanwhile, on the south side of the Wall, more flaming arrows as Tormund, Ygritte and the Wildlings take Castle Black pretty much unawares. It doesn't take long for them to break in and start slaughtering everyone in the courtyard. Even poor Pyp gets an arrow in the throat courtesy of Ygritte. (I hope she's a playable choice in the inevitable Xbox One title.)

Ser Alliser gives command of the wall to the cowardly and inept Janos Slynt and heads down to deal with invasion of the castle, though he should have just let the cooks take care of it since they literally butchered the Wildlings that burst into the mess hall. Janos is also sent down the Wall to deal with the Wildlings and Jon has to face the Giants breaking through the gate to the underground tunnels. However, a couple of barrels of flaming oil dropped from the Wall takes care of that attempt at breaking and entering. However, however, one of the barrels didn't launch and blows up a big chunk of the top of the Wall. However, however, however, a remaining giant is so incensed that he single handedly lifts the gate long enough to get in the tunnel. Jon sends a vaguely familiar face whose name no one can remember to take five scared rapists, I mean, Night's Watch men down to the tunnel to defend the inner gate.

Sam gets to the top of the Wall to tell Jon they need him down there. Ser Alliser is badly wounded after a pitched battle with Tormund and no one else knows how to swing a sword. Though you'd think the ranks of the Night's Watch being filled with murderers would guarantee a few people with a certain...skill set to do well here. Jon gives command of the Wall to Dolorous Edd and heads down to kick some serious ass. And he does. From the moment he steps off the elevator Wildlings get his boot in their face and his sword in their gut. Even his direwolf gets in on the fun.

Finally, Jon and Styr the Thenn see each other across the battlefield and they go at each other. At first it looks like Jon can hold his own, but then Styr knocks Jon's sword out of his hand and plants the bastard's face into an anvil. Who's the pretty boy now? Just when Styr thinks he's going to get to wear Snow's entrails as a necklace, Jon grabs a smithy hammer and plants it in the Thenn's head. It's almost as gruesome as Oberyn's skull popping like an overripe melon in the last episode. Almost...

Then Jon turns and spots Ygritte who sees him at the same time. The battle noise fades as he can't help but smile and she falters just the tiniest bit as she draws back an arrow to put it into his cowardly crow heart. But the lethal arrow in this scene sinks into Ygritte, courtesy of the young boy orphaned by the Wildling's earlier raid on his village. I'm good with all this. We knew it was going to end badly for these two star-crossed lovers. But the dialogue that follows is exactly what you expect it to be and that is quite disappointing. Ygritte mutters her catch phrase and dies in Jon's arms. Bah, I expected something better.

Somehow this signals the end of the battle on both sides of the wall. Jon orders the badly wounded Tormund put in a cell and Sam finds Gilly safe in her room (despite the arrival of the cowardly Janos Slynt). Jon tells Sam that the war is far from over and the only way to stop it is to kill Mance who has united the Wildling tribes. And he's the man to do it.

Fade to white as he passes out of the tunnel into the wilds North of the Wall...

Can we get back to multi-thread storytelling now??

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