“The Lengthy Night time” falls in keeping with Recreation of Thrones‘ largest and typically finest battle episodes: “Blackwater,” “The Watchers on the Wall,” “Hardhome,” and “Battle of the Bastards,” by which story is informed to take the time off and cameramen shaking cameras and PAs hauling buckets of pink corn syrup receives a commission time beyond regulation. I am not going to say this was the most important battle of all of them — I finished counting the dying extras after I obtained to 1,526 — but it surely was a doozy!

However was it the most effective? There’s a debate happening on-line about whether or not this was probably the most disappointing episode of Recreation of Thrones ever or simply the second-most disappointing episode ever (and some are even saying it was the BEST episode ever!). Mondays are filled with overreactions, selective amnesia, and drained takes, so right here is the definitive response to “The Lengthy Night time”: It was OK!

I really like Recreation of Thrones, and I really like loving Recreation of Thrones, and I even love hating Recreation of Thrones, so possibly I am not the individual to ask, however I loved this greater than the Sand Snakes however not as a lot as “Hardhome.” There have been wonderful components and there have been unamazing components, and there are issues to overthink and issues to not suppose sufficient about. That is just about what Recreation of Thrones has been since about Season three or so, when it turned a sufferer of its personal spectacle whereas additionally changing into an unstoppable power due to that spectacle. I used to be on my telephone in the course of the closing episode of True Detective, however for “The Lengthy Night time,” I put my telephone in a bag of rocks and threw it within the river. Even when it did not reside as much as the billing of an awesome episode, it certain lived as much as the billing of an costly episode. If you happen to for one second stated you had been bored watching “The Lengthy Night time,” then you definately, sir/ma’am, are an enormous, fats liar.

Nonetheless, if you happen to stated you had been blind, I would not argue. This episode was D-A-R-Ok. It’s my private opinion that nice motion items are higher when you’ll be able to inform what’s going on, however I suppose that is why director Miguel Sapochnik is the Emmy nominee carrying night-vision goggles, and I am right here simply placing phrases on footage. After a number of bone-chilling minutes of mood-setting doom (is it doable that Sapochnik’s finest work was all pre-battle stuff?), the battle was prepared to start, and fortunately MA GIRL Melisandre (Carice van Houten) confirmed up out of nowhere to repair all that darkness with some hearth magik and Lord of Gentle nonsense.

I actually — within the precise sense of the phrase actually, not Rob Lowe from Parks and Recreation actually or any actuality present contestant saying actually — stood up and clapped when Mel lit up these Dothraki Arakhs together with her spooky wiccan hearth. It was an awesome visible, simply because the visible of all their fiery weapons getting extinguished as they had been decimated by wights was. However then issues began to slip. My difficulty with this episode was that as I used to be watching, I used to be repeatedly saying to my cat, “That wasn’t very good.”

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I have never led a military on the battlefield, however I’ve performed loads of Bloons TD5 on my telephone, so I feel I do know a factor or two about army ways. Somebody who actually needed all of the Dothraki to die clearly deliberate that first a part of the battle. “OK, very first thing we do is ship all of the Dothraki in by themselves, earlier than we even see the dangerous guys. Simply run them method far on the market — all of them — far sufficient the place they’re completely on their very own and we will not assist in any respect, however we are able to maintain an excellent eye on them. It is essential that it is all of them! Each final one! And do not hassle giving them dragonglass weapons. And after they’re lastly on the market, let’s throw a bunch of big boulders at them. And the boulders are on hearth! Yeah, that is good.” All of them died. Quick. Nice plan, you racist anti-Dothraki jerk!

In order that wasn’t a good suggestion. With so many troopers at their disposal, sending within the Dothraki by themselves is like when a bunch of goons assault Jackie Chan, however do it separately like morons. Perhaps this complete factor wasn’t so well-thought-out. Why would you set your catapults on the entrance of the road the place they’ll turn out to be ineffective as soon as the entrance line breaks (to not point out they solely obtained off one shot every)? Why not dig some extra of these hearth trenches or set the partitions of Winterfell on hearth? Why not, I do not know, blast by the wights whereas they had been standing nonetheless outdoors the hearth trench? Why not use the dragons A LOT MORE? Along with coping with the darkness and uneven modifying, you do not actually need the distraction of questioning the positions of trebuchets when watching what’s alleged to be the best battle ever to hit the TV. (I used to be actually hung up on the catapults and trebuchets for some motive.)

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All of it went to heck very quick, and within the mess, we had our first main casualty: Dolorous Edd (Ben Crompton)! And like everybody else who died tonight, he perished saving somebody who was extra essential than he was, as a result of pecking order is essential to this now. You are welcome, Sam!

I feel there have been three or 4 instances within the present that I assumed he was already useless, however I used to be nonetheless gutted to see him go. Largely as a result of he died in that method: stabbed within the again by a no one. This was THE battle we have been ready for, I say give him a very honorable and memorable dying like changing into a hand puppet for a large or getting crushed to dying along with his personal dismembered leg. Look, Recreation of Thrones, if we are able to deal with our favourite character getting his head reduce off within the ninth episode of the sequence, we are able to deal with Edd getting sliced down the center like a sausage about to go on the grill. Deep down inside, I feel all of us wish to see these characters we have spent years studying to like undergo a brutal, disgusting, and memorable dying. Is that an excessive amount of to ask?

Edd’s dying took some time, however there was an excellent longer await the following main dying. It obtained to the purpose the place every time I noticed one among my favorites on display, I obtained very uncomfortable as a result of I knew they might be a part of Ser Pounce throughout the Rainbow Bridge. Often you perk up when a favourite will get a scene; right here, I used to be cursing the present any time the Hound (Rory McCann) appeared on my TV. “Do not you do it, present,” I shouted at my TV like a nervous lunatic!

However the main deaths in “The Lengthy Night time” did occur, and so lots of them had been… pedestrian. Beric Dondarrion (Richard Dormer) was stabbed within the again, Ser Jorah of Home Friendzone (Iain Glen) was stabbed within the facet, and Theon Greyjoy (Alfie Allen) was stabbed within the entrance — that is two of probably the most good-looking males on the planet and Lily Allen’s brother gone in a matter of minutes. Even the Night time King — spoiler, he died — exploded into ice cubes from a stabbin’. It was Downton Stabby up in right here. Let’s undergo their deaths.

Beric most likely had the worst dying of all of them, although he went out saving Arya (Maisie Williams), which might show to be sort of an enormous deal. Nonetheless, for a person who has died a number of instances, he was most likely very dissatisfied in his closing dying. “Stabbed? That is it?” he thought to himself because the acquainted embrace of nothingness enveloped him for the final time. Cute that the man who has been repeatedly resurrected obtained to say goodbye with some blunt symbolism.

Now Jorah, that man PIMPED out of existence. You understand this lovesick pet spent the complete episode hiding behind corpses whereas stalking Dany (Emilia Clarke) so he may save her life on the proper second, and boy did he ship. Jorah cherished Dany like a lonely weeaboo loves his anime pillow; he did not want something again from her; he simply wanted to be close to her. When Dany was in deep doo-doo, he stepped in entrance of a pair dozen swords to guard her. This was actually unhappy and efficient, and just about the one method his arc may have ended. I give his dying a thumbs-up. Good dying, Jorah!

Harsh, Dany.

By now you understand my ideas on Theon. Good riddance, Theon. You are not fooling me along with your hole apologies! You betrayed the one household who ever cherished you, you twit. Go get stuffed inside Davy Jones’ locker, wimp of the ocean. And he went out in typical Theon vogue — by being reckless and dumb! Bran (Isaac Hempstead-Wright) forgave Theon and gave him the OK to be useless now, and the squid prince obliged and obtained skewered proper by the barnacle by the Night time King. See ya, mate!

That arrange the grand finale, the heavyweight matchup between the 2 weirdest weirdos on the present, Bran The Three-Eyed Raven and the Night time King, as a result of the Night time King desires the Three-Eyed Raven useless as a result of he, uhhh, as a result of the… errr. Will probably be the conclusion of the Night time King’s plan to… hmmm. What even is occurring right here? Who’s the Three-Eyed Raven? The place did the Night time King actually come from? Why does the Night time King want him useless? Who’re the Youngsters of the Forest and the First Males? Solely George R.R. Martin that one night time he was drunk and got here up with all of this is aware of, however belief me it was (most likely) IMPORTANT.

Then this occurred, as a result of why not?

The Night time King exploded, the White Walkers was shaved ice, the wights all fell down, and Viserion collapsed. That was it! The Night time King, the deadliest menace to mankind and TV’s nice metaphor for local weather change, was defeated by a teenage woman and a stabbin’! We nonetheless do not actually perceive the White Walkers’ motives, what they actually needed to do, or how they labored. However they had been BAD, and that is all I have to know. These eight seasons of advanced mythology led as much as a stabbin’. The nice guys received, the dangerous guys misplaced, and although 99 % of the human defenders died, all the main characters miraculously survived despite the fact that each scene they had been in they had been getting piled on by the military of the undead. What are the percentages?

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We’re virtually on the finish right here, and I have never even talked about Jon Snow (Package Harington) but. Why? As a result of he was one among many ineffective characters on this episode. Jon was continuously on the cusp of doing one thing essential, however actually solely ran round Winterfell or flew a dragon into the sky the place there was no preventing. After taking middle stage in “Hardhome” and “The Battle of the Bastards,” Jon was only a man in search of one thing to do in “The Lengthy Night time.”

Bran, effectively, he just about tuned out the entire struggle by warging right into a raven whereas he waited for the Night time King to point out up. I suppose I do not completely blame him since he knew precisely what was going to occur due to his third eye, and the one factor he actually wanted to do was pay Theon some fan service.

Sam (John Bradley), Brienne (Gwendoline Christie), and Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) spent the episode on their backs or swinging swords, and everybody within the crypt type of sat there, even when the bones of creepy Uncle Stark started crawling out of their tombs. Perhaps it is simply me, however I assumed there is likely to be extra stuff for everybody to do right here.

People 1, Lifeless Weirdos 0! We received! However there was yet another dying available. With Winterfell protected and the following process wheelbarrowing 10,000 corpses off the premises, Melisandre noped out of there, took off her magical necklace, and assumed her true age. And since her true age is 402 years outdated and it was dawn, I am fairly certain she left to search out an early chook particular someplace.

That is what occurred! “Hardhome” was higher. Subsequent week: We lastly return to Cersei!

In search of the earlier Recreation of Thrones photograph recaps? Right here they’re for Episode 1: “Winterfell” and Episode 2: “A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms.”

Recreation of Thrones airs Sundays at 9/8c on HBO, and if you happen to do not watch it instantly, you may be spoiled so plan accordingly.