This article is dark and full of spoilers.
After everything we have been through, let me just say: I understand why this show was accused of making people violent. Moving on…
Episode Nine of the Sixth Season of Game of Thrones (GoT) was aptly titled ‘Battle of The Bastards’. We never thought to say this, but the entire season seemed somewhat repetitive what with Daenerys (also known as Dany) getting into a scrape, again, and then breaking free, again; and montages of Arya undergoing yet more of her endless training before deciding to scrap the whole thing, etc., etc.
However, the Ninth Episode, like every other Ninth Episode in the entire Series brought life to the show and perhaps introduced the viewers a tad bit more to the violent aspects of the story.
Starting off with the Dany plotline—where Tyrion tries to explain the attack (what attack, you ask? Watch the series you infidels) as if it was a party he threw while his parents were out of town, only to now find that the house is trashed.
Even Six Seasons in there is some sort of primal thrill to watching her (who?) ride her dragons and incinerate her enemies. Honestly, every time Daenerys mounts Drogon it is like a very special episode of ‘How To Train Your Murderous Teenage Dragon’. Daenerys’s new alliance with Yara raised new and provocative ideas about female leadership—a state of affairs that has precious few precedents on this show. And when the Dothraki meet the Sons of the Harpy: Ah, the satisfaction!
As for the show’s centrepiece, the action at the ‘Battle of the Bastards’ between Jon and Ramsay, it is among the most beautifully shot work in the show’s history. The GoT clan has even said that the full fifteen minutes of battle was taken from nearly 82 hours of shooting. Imagine trying to sift through THAT! The sequence of Jon facing down a marauding horde all by himself was striking; what followed, a chaotic mess during which the onetime King in the North stood untouched, seemingly invincible like some fur-clad cousin of Neo in The Matrix, was remarkable.
However, before it all began little Rickon was reunited with his beloved Shaggydog. The only thing we were thinking while watching THAT scene was ‘Rickon, when Ramsay says “Let’s play a game,” do not play that game.’
‘The Battle of the Bastards’ proved to be the epic and bloody showdown ‘GoT’ fans had anticipated. With plenty of death and destruction to go around, we watched as the meagre force of Jon Snow loyalists fought tooth and nail against the Boltons, the Karstarks, and the Umbers. There was plenty of gore on the battlefield and for some, the blood and gore was perhaps too brutal, what with Tormund making us think “YES TORMUND EAT HIM!” which is hardly sane.
The battle itself however was hardly between the two Bastards, until of course the very end when we watched with satisfaction, each punch Jon Snow dealt to the Bolton Bastard. Sansa, however, had the last laugh when she turned Ramsay’s hounds against him. Now, I don’t always advocate the need for gratuitous violence and gore, but in this case, I’d like to say thank you to the GoT team for letting us have that first hound bite.
Sorry for all the spoilers.