More Game of Thrones

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader figures that he is going to share some observations about the most recent episode of Game of Thrones. This is the episode is entitled “The Long Night” and features the “Battle of Winterfell.” The whole 82 minute episode consists of the final battle between the Night King and the arrayed forces of the North.

Your Maximum Leader will give away some spoilers in his writing. So be advised…

The first observations are technical. Much hay was made about the episode being “feature length.” This is a fancy way of saying it was longer than most. Your Maximum Leader believes that the episode could have benefited from a some editing. It didn’t need to be an hour and a half (roughly). It probably could have been about 15 minutes shorter and been a little tighter and had a nicer flow. So there is that. Others have said that the lighting seemed dark and things were hard to make out. Your Maximum Leader somewhat agrees with this assessment. He would have preferred more light and definition to what he was watching, but he figured this critique is born of two things. The first would be to simulate that all the action is happening during the darkness of the winter made more insidious by the Night King. The second factor was budgetary. Dark and obscured likely costs less to make. And HBO has to squeeze the cash out of this cash cow which has only thee more episodes. Your Maximum Leader also admits that he has grown tired with all the “confusion of battle” that seems to be much of the rage now when choreographing fights. There is a lot of chaos and rapid cutting. The episode wasn’t as bad as many, but the confusion of the battlefield doesn’t have to be honestly depicted on screen. Your Maximum Leader’s biggest item, from a technical point, is that this episode really could have used some editing…

Your Maximum Leader will broadly agree with many items that you’ve likely already read about on the interwebs or spoken about with friends. They are (in no particular order): Don’t seek shelter in a crypt when your enemy reanimates the dead; the whole “use Bran to lure the Night King to you” plan seems irrelevant (couldn’t the Night King have just flown in on his zombie dragon and blasted them from the air?); Arya had a great night (she sleeps with Gentry AND kills the Night King in 24 hours); and plenty of significant characters died (but not as many as one would have expected to die).

So here are some more thoughts in short paragraph form.

Some people seem to want to know why the Night King didn’t turn Arya into a wight the moment he grabbed her by the neck. Your Maximum Leader thinks that the whole “change into a wight” power is one that the Night King has to actively choose to “activate” (for lack of a better term). One can’t imagine that everything he touches just gets reanimated from the dead? He isn’t a zombie creating version of King Midas after all. Every time he raises his arms up from his sides to put on his tunic and armor he doesn’t automatically reanimate anything dead within a mile of where he’s standing. This point bothers some, but doesn’t bother your Maximum Leader.

The aerial dragon combat could have benefited from a technical adviser. Apparently Dany and Jon never spoke strategery when it came to fighting the Night King on his dragon. They should have had been operating in tandem, but with a fair distance between them, at a high altitude to get a better angle of attack on the Night King. Actually, the dragon fighting was your Maximum Leader’s favorite part of the episode.

The Dothraki died stupid. Every last one of them.

Your Maximum Leader isn’t sure how Jaime Lannister survived. The one handed knight was able to fight off the myriad dead with is bad hand… Seems improbable.

Your Maximum Leader figured a few more deaths would be visited upon significant characters… That being said…

All hail Lyanna Mormont! Lady Lyanna Mormont of Bear Island. By the Old Gods and the New, she was your Maximum Leader’s favorite minor character in the show of late. He is sorry to see her shuffle off her mortal coil. She did not die stupid. She died like a badass. Your Maximum Leader may have noticed the room in which he was watching was dusty when she died. But she died the way you would want to see her go. Fighting until the end and getting all stabby through the eye of the zombie giant. Frankly, your Maximum Leader would have like to see Lady Mormont becoming the Warden of the North in the reign of the restored Targaryens. Or getting to be Lady of Bear Island - and Lady of the Twins (since House Frey seems to be gone). Your Maximum Leader is so much more fond of the Lyanna Mormont of the TV show than the quiet, sad, Lady Lyanna of the novels. Your Maximum Leader doffs his bejeweled mylan cap in Bella Ramsey’s direction for the great job she did bringing Lyanna Mormont to life (and then death) in the show. Bravo!

Speaking of Mormonts, your Maximum Leader wasn’t as sad to see Jorah Mormont go. His jig was up. Perhaps his death will temper be a lesson to Dany as she progresses towards the Iron Throne - which your Maximum Leader hopes she will occupy soon.

One final note… Arya jumping out of no where in her attack on the Night King seemed like something out of an 80’s action flick. It just happened. There was no foreshadowing of it. No set up. It just happened. It seemed a bit lame on the one hand, but sort of cool at some other level.

There are all the disjointed thoughts for now. Perhaps your Maximum Leader will write shortly on weightier matters…

Carry on.

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