Full spoilers for Game Of Thrones below
Have you been unhappy with Season 5 thus far? I know I’ve had more complaints than I did for any of the previous seasons, none major but still more than this series usually warrants. Luckily this week, ahead of next week’s episode 9 and all the delectable TV that should entail, we were treated to one of the best GoT episodes of the series so far.
I’m going to try my best to cover this episode in its entirety but quite simply the exploits of Jon Snow and the wildlings blew everything else out of the water. It has been a long standing tradition of the show for the action set pieces to be marquee events when they happen, but the way in which things went fully into overdrive this week was breathtaking. Channelling all the best parts of the Lord Of The Rings trilogy, as well as a good dose of Saving Private Ryan, Jon Snow and the Wildling/Thenn alliance fought off the first meaningful involvement of the army of White Walkers.
Given that they were the first part of this universe we had any introduction to, it has been an insane wait to see the White Walkers properly in action. When the payoff is like this though, it makes it very much worth it. Clearly there has been a massive budget swing this season, that or Bran and Hodor cost an awful lot, because we have had more dragons and now a full on feature film battlefield for our viewing pleasure. So…many….epic moments. Most significant of them all was the revelation that Valyrian steel seems to have a resistance of sorts to the Walkers, as Jon Snow so assuredly has shown.
As well as the colossal events beyond the wall, we had the first proper look at what a conversation between Tyrion and Dany looks like. As is to be expected, there is still some trust missing between the two, but Tyrion’s sharp wit and keen ability to support the sitting monarch will keep him alive and, more importantly – will keep him at Dany’s side. Whenever she begins her march on Westeros, it’ll be all the sweeter under the aide of Tyrion, this is the last union anyone thought of but the finest we could have got.
Elsewhere, Cersei is being reduced to licking water from the decrepit floor of her cell, Arya is about to make the leap to full servant of the Many Faced God and Sansa has discovered she has some family left alive. Really it is just those events at Winterfell that stumbled a little this week. The drawn out nature of what exactly is going to happen there will hopefully come to a head next week. It all comes back to Hardhome though, man that was just some excellent TV. What in God’s name have they in store for the big nine?
Game Of Thrones airs Mondays at 9pm on Sky Atlantic