Warning, this inexplicably and improbably (and did I mention purposely?) includes spoilers. Bloody hell. If it wasn’t already kicking off, it is now. Turkey’s gone up the dictatorial junta. Theresa May is given a free pass as PM, those high heels can kill. Yemen is the quiet war nobody wants to talk about, whilst Syria just gets messier. Let’s not forget the umpteenth suicide bomber this week in Iraq. Germany is now under the terrorist hammer, days after France’s misery continues. The cops are still killing black people for no reason in the USA. Trump trounces Hillary whilst the British soft centre left continue their now obligatory written assassination of Jeremy Corbyn. Meanwhile, unreported, the refugee situation intensifies. We turn a blind eye. As if all that was not bad enough, Sam Allardyce is now England Football Team manager. Jesus really wept. But wait! What is this among our midst? Is it forewarning of warmer climes? I see, there be a light, a beacon of hope, a redemption that will bathe my body in the brightest sunshine. Yes, for fucks sake: Jon Snow, the bastard, LIVES! Everything else, in my world and your world is meaningless.
But wait! What is this among our midst? Is it forewarning of warmer climes? I see, there be a light, a beacon of hope, a redemption that will bathe my body in the brightest sunshine. Yes, for fucks sake: Jon Snow, the bastard, LIVES! Everything else, in my world and your world is meaningless.
Season 6 of the most popular TV show in the world (™), didn’t disappoint in bringing us the vengeful goods. Like a medieval franchise version of the Death Wish movies, Game Of Thrones helped release all our revengeful ejaculations. And you know what? It kind of felt good. This was payback time played out on the biggest TV screens across the land. And yet, despite giving us the sweetest release and doing away with the most evil and darkest characters, Game of Thrones retained its genuine desire for weirdness. Whoever writes Peter Dinklage’s lines retains their sense of humor and knows there probably is no better actor alive to deliver them. This season even managed to squeeze in an Ian McShane cameo, which was pure homage to Deadwood’s Al Swearingen (and why not).
But it would be futile not to mention the bravura ninth episode, Battle Of The Bastards. This episode not only raises the bar for depicting war in any filmic format, but outdid Game Of Thrones previous for relentless carnal dammage. It was a supremely well made piece of television, the money dripping off the screen. It’s one of the things the makers of Game Of Thrones understand so well. Don’t skimp on the settings and short change the audience. The outlandishness, the fantasy, the sex, the violence and abject cruelty; all the while depicting various arrays of opulent royalty in all its bestial disfunction. It’s what keeps the world hooked. Game Of Thrones brings us as much of an escape from the daily grind and takes us as far away from our reality as possible. That’s why I love it.
A year ago I saved myself every evening by spending my time knitting and binge-watching Game of Thrones, seasons 1 to 5. I had previously resisted the series assuming that knights and princesses in the woods, or in castles or at war just would not intrigue – I was wrong. I got lost beyond the Wall, just like everyone else. I remember those late summer evenings (and any moment I could get) as a particularly happy place: I lived in a fairytale that felt real. Not like Frodo in The Lord Of The Rings, but like me as myself, just in the middle of an imagined reality. Somewhere where everything is possible in good and bad – and there is lots of sex and violence.
I lived in a fairytale that felt real. Not like Frodo in The Lord Of The Rings, but like me as myself, just in the middle of an imagined reality. Somewhere where everything is possible in good and bad – and there is lots of sex and violence.
When I got through the five first seasons of GOT my knitting habit died with the millions of casualties the series had left behind. All I could do was wait. Wait for spring 2016 and the promise of a sixth season. What would happen to Jon Snow (Kit Harington)? Because surely they cannot just let that one go – or could they? Because this series has killed off so many other key players, ruthlessly, giving everything that merciless touch of the real again. And what about Arya and Sansa Stark or the goddess of everything, Daenerys Targaryen and her three dragons? I still cannot believe that at the age of 34 these are the questions I am seriously thinking about in the thick of winter. Yet, I am thankful. Somehow this Game of Thrones narrative has given me hope. I have faith that HBO will always be an amazing outlet and platform for great storytelling. I have hope in people who watch this series, making it the most popular series in the world. I see potential in our collective imagination. I believe that in this time of extreme apathy, violence and inequality there is a need for stories that imagine the past and the future on top of each other. I rejoice in the magical.
The sixth season of Game of Thrones reads like a pompous self-assured and dutiful but victorious son. It is a little predictable that many major story lines are tied up neatly here. The series struggles to pull out wild cards at this point, but it doesn’t have to. I am glad that the White Walkers don’t figure too prominently. Unbelievable things happen again in every episode and yet I want to believe in their role as part of the whole. I don’t question their realness. The narration hangs in the fringes of mystery, never revealing too much. As a piece of cinema, this was a fantastic season. There are such heartbreaking intimate scenes as well as in-your-face smashing scenes on a huge scale. The women of this series seem to be lining up for a reckoning in season 7. They just get better and stronger all the time. I can’t wait for more, but I must.