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GAME OF THRONES: SEASON 8 | TV Review

“She’s my Queen”

RELEASED: April 14th 2019 – May 19th 2019
SHOWRUNNER: David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
WRITTEN BY: Dave Hill, Bryan Cogman, David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
DIRECTED BY: David Nutter, Miguel Sapochnik, David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
MUSIC BY:  Ramin Djawadi
STARRING:
Peter Dinklage, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Kit Harington, Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams, Liam Cunningham, Nathalie Emmanuel, Alfie Allen, John Bradley, Isaac Hempstead Wright, Gwendoline Christie, Conleth Hill, Rory McCann, Jerome Flynn, Kristofer Hivju, Joe Dempsie, Jacob Anderson, Iain Glen, Hannah Murray, Carice van Houten, Richard Dormer, Ben Crompton, Daniel Portman, Bella Ramsey, Vladimir Furdik, Pilou Asbæk, Anton Lesser, Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson, Gemma Whelan, Tobias Menzies & Lino Facioli

In the final season of Game of Thrones, the Stark forces in the North, led by Jon Snow, Sansa Stark and Arya Stark, come together with the foreign legions of the ‘Mother of Dragons’, Daenerys Targaryen, to fight the Night King and his forces of the Undead in the ‘Great War’.

However, even with abysmal prospects ahead of them, Daenerys still has her eye on travelling south to King’s Landing for the ‘Final War’ against Cersei Lannister, where she hopes to reclaim the Iron Throne for the Targaryens. However, the revelation that Jon Snow is secretly the son of her brother Rhaegar Targaryen and Ned Stark’s sister Lyanna means that she is no longer the one with the greatest claim to the throne…

You’ve probably heard by now, but this season hasn’t gone down all that well with the majority of watchers. The reasons have been discussed online ad nauseam, but I’m going to discuss them again anyway because they’re pretty crucial to reviewing this season.

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GAME OF THRONES: SEASON 7 | TV Review

We’re now just a mere few hours away from the premiere of the final season of Game of Thrones, so it’s time for me to finally get my act together and review the penultimate season!

RELEASED: July 16th 2017 – August 27th 2017
SHOWRUNNER: David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
WRITTEN BY: David Benioff, D. B. Weiss, Bryan Cogman & Dave Hill
DIRECTED BY: Jeremy Podeswa, Mark Mylod, Matt Shakman & Alan Taylor
MUSIC BY:  Ramin Djawadi
STARRING: 
Peter Dinklage, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Kit Harington, Aidan Gillen, Liam Cunningham, Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams, Nathalie Emmanuel, Gwendoline Christie, Conleth Hill, John Bradley, Isaac Hempstead Wright, Hannah Murray, Kristofer Hivju, Rory McCann, Iain Glen, Carice van Houten, Indira Varma, Alfie Allen, Jerome Flynn, Joe Dempsie, Richard Dormer, Paul Kaye, Daniel Portman, Vladimir Furdik, Joseph Mawle, Pilou Asbæk, Anton Lesser, Hafpór Júlíus Björnsson, James Faulkner, Tom Hopper, Mark Gatiss, Jacob Anderson, Diana Rigg, Gemma Whelan, Jessica Henwick, Rosabell Laurenti Sellers, Keisha Castle-Hughes & Jim Broadbent

After six seasons, Daenerys Targaryen finally arrives in Westeros, taking up residence in her family home of Dragonstone, and beginning a war against Cersei Lannister for control of the Seven Kingdoms. Meanwhile, Jon Snow, the King in the North, leaves Winterfell in search of allies to help against the army of the dead, while the Night King continues to accumulate power as he and his armies march on the wall.

Much like season six before it, season seven of Game of Thrones delivers a lot of pay-off and fan-service over its shorter runtime. We’ve been watching these characters grow for sixty episodes, and here, we finally get to see the majority of the cast come together at some point or another, revelling in their shared history, and setting things up for both the battle against the Night King and the Wight Walkers, as well as the battle for control of the Iron Throne.

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GAME OF THRONES: SEASON 6 | TV Review

The first time I watched season six of Game of Thrones, I enjoyed it, but my mind was also distracted by wondering when the array of spoilers I had heard over the years would come to fruition. Then, I promptly moved on to season seven, and my recollection of events started to blur when it came to writing my review.

However, I’ve now rewatched season six, and with events fresh in my mind, I’m ready to go! Like my season four review, this review will also drop one fairly major spoiler because once again, it happens at the start and you can’t really discuss the various heroes’ journey’s without acknowledging it.

RELEASED: April 24th 2016 – June 26th 2016
SHOWRUNNER: David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
WRITTEN BY: David Benioff, D. B. Weiss, Dave Hill & Bryan Cogman
DIRECTED BY: Jeremy Podeswa, Daniel Sackheim, Jack Bender, Mark Mylod & Miguel Sapochnik
MUSIC BY:  Ramin Djawadi
STARRING:
Peter Dinklage, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Kit Harrington, Liam Cunningham, Carice van Houten, Natalie Dormer, Indira Varma, Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams, Conleth Hill, Alfie Allen, Gwendoline Christie, Jonathan Pryce, Michiel Huisman, Michael McElhatton, Iwan Rheon, Iain Glen, Nathalie Emmanuel, Kristofer Hivju, Tom Wlaschiha, Dean-Charles Chapman, Isaac Hempstead Wright, John Bradley, Hannah Murray, Aidan Gillen, Rory McCann & Jerome Flynn

One of my coworkers has repeatedly told me she believes season six to be the best season of the show, due to the fact that while all the seasons have their highlights, season six maintains consistently high quality. Whether that is true or not we’ll explore now.

In season six, Game of Thrones finally reaches the point where it overtakes the story laid out in the books of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire, crafting its own original story using Martin’s notes and some details from previous novels. Daenerys Targaryen‘s time in Essos comes to a violent end, as she finds herself facing off against both the Dothraki Hordes in full, as well the Masters of Yunkai and Astapor, in response to her volatile rule of Slavers Bay. In her absence from the city of Mereen, Tyrion Lannister and Varys struggle to rule in her stead, with enemies appearing on all sides. Elsewhere, Arya Stark returns to the House of Black and White, and is given a second chance to align with the ‘Faceless Men’.

Meanwhile, across the Narrow Sea, Cersei Lannister makes a power play to take out her enemies, and the Iron Islands are rocked as Balon Greyjoy‘s death leads to a struggle for the Salt Throne.
To the North, the remaining members of House Stark* reunite to face off against House Bolton for control of Winterfell, as a new ‘King in the North’ is crowned.

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GAME OF THRONES: SEASON 5 | TV Review (/and the problem with spoilers)

RELEASED: April 12th 2015 – June 14th 2015
SHOWRUNNER: David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
WRITTEN BY: David Benioff, D. B. Weiss, Dave Hill & Bryan Cogman
DIRECTED BY: Michael Slovis, Mark Mylod, Jeremy Podeswa, Miguel Sapochnik & David Nutter
MUSIC BY:  Ramin Djawadi
STARRING:
Peter Dinklage, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Kit Harrington, Aiden Gillen, Natalie Dormer, Stephen Dillane, Liam Cunningham, Carice van Houten, John Bradley, Sophie Turner, Kristofer Hivju, Hannah Murray, Conleth Hill, Gwendoline Christie, Michiel Huisman, Nathalie Emmanuel, Dean-Charles Chapman, Indira Varma, Maisie Williams, Jerome Flynn, Tom Wlaschiha, Alfie Allen, Michael McElhatton, Iwan Rheon & Iain Glen

This show really loves to start and stop. You get seasons like season three where things rush ahead, and then others like season two, where things seem to slow to a crawl. I know that this is down to the books of George R. R. Martin, and the way he’s plotted out A Song of Ice and Fire, but it seems strange that after the monumental episodes at the end of season four, where we saw the Wildlings attack the wall en masse, and the heartbreaking defeat of Prince Oberyn (Pedro Pascal), that we can then move on to a season where Daenerys seemingly halts her plans to attack Westeros and the Lannister stop fighting walls to trade insults with a bunch of priests.

With the external conflicts seemingly halted, season four sees our various characters tested by internal threats. The Lannisters come into conflict with the religious zealots, the Sparrows, while Jaime Lannister enlists the sellsword Bronn to help him recover his daughter/niece from the exotic kingdom of Dorne.
To the North, Sansa Stark comes into conflict with the new lords of Winterfell, the Boltons, while Jon Snow is named the new Lord Commander of the Nights Watch and hopes to make peace with the Wildlings.

Across the Narrow Sea, Daenerys Targaryen settles into her role as Queen of Meereen, but faces pushback from the former slaves and masters alike, while Arya Stark seeks answers amongst Jaqen H’ghar‘s society of assassins known as the ‘Faceless Men’. Meanwhile, Tyrion Lannister and Varys travel across Essoss in hopes of meeting the ‘Mother of Dragons’.

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GAME OF THRONES: SEASON 4 | TV Review

Following the ‘Red Wedding’, we now have the ‘Purple Wedding’. This review is going to be a bit more heavy on spoilers (or rather, one particular spoiler) than the last three, due to the fact that a major death kicks off the plot-lines of the season.

RELEASED: April 6th 2014 – June 15th 2014
SHOWRUNNER: David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
WRITTEN BY: David Benioff, D. B. Weiss, Bryan Cogman & George R. R. Martin
DIRECTED BY: D. B. Weiss, Alex Graves, Michelle MacLaren, Alik Sakharov & Neil Marshall
MUSIC BY:  Ramin Djawadi
STARRING:
Peter Dinklage, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Kit Harrington, Charles Dance, Natalie Dormer, Jack Gleeson, Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams, John Bradley, Rose Leslie, Kristofer Hivju, Rory McCann, Gwendoline Christie, Jerome Flynn, Sibel Kekilli, Iain Glen, Liam Cunningham, Stephen Dillane, Carice van Houten, Alfie Allen, Isaac Hempstead Wright, Iwan Rheon, Conleth Hill, Aiden Gillen & Hannah Murray

This season is an interesting one, in that, so far, it’s probably had the largest collection of great episodes, but at the same time, a lot of the season doesn’t quite live up to the overall greatness of season three.

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GAME OF THRONES: SEASON 3 | TV Review

This season we reached the famous ‘Red Wedding’. I finally understand. So much so that season two seems slightly worse in hindsight (that review has been edited ever so slightly to reflect that opinion).

Anyway, same as last week, I’ll try not to spoil anything from this season, but there may be some spoilers for season two below.

RELEASED: March 31st 2013 – June 9th 2013
SHOWRUNNER: David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
WRITTEN BY: David Benioff, D. B. Weiss, Vanessa Taylor, Bryan Cogman & George R. R. Martin
DIRECTED BY: Daniel Minahan, David Benioff, Alex Graves, Alik Sakharov, Michelle MacLaren & David Nutter
MUSIC BY:  Ramin Djawadi
STARRING:
Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Kit Harrington, Richard Madden, Iain Glen, Michelle Fairley, Aiden Gillen, Charles Dance, Liam Cunningham, Stephen Dillane, Carice van Houten, Natalie Dormer, Jack Gleeson, Sophie Turner, Oona Chaplin, Sibel Kekilli, Rose Leslie, James Cosmo, Jerome Flynn, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Isaac Hempstead Wright, Maisie Williams, Alfie Allen, Joe Dempsie, Rory McCann & Conleth Hill

This show really starts taking strides this season. While season two was mostly just build-up, a lot of season three is the pay-off. The War of Five Kings highlights some big events. Stannis Baratheon and his ilk make some power plays. Even Bran Stark gets a destination. In fact, the only character who perhaps does not progress this season is Theon Greyjoy, who spends the ten episodes as a captive of a mysterious torturer. And I’m willing to forgive that because I don’t much care for him anyway.

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GAME OF THRONES: SEASON 2 | TV Review

Being so late to the game, I understand that spoilers are everywhere when it comes to Game of Thrones, and avoiding them can be a difficult task (I literally just had an event in season 4 spoilt for me while sourcing pictures for season 2).

However, due to season two of Game of Thrones building off the big events of season one, I can’t really discuss it without discussing spoilers for season one. So this is a spoiler warning. I won’t spoil anything that happens in season two, but unfortunately spoiling season one seems to be a necessary evil.

You’ve been warned.


RELEASED: April 1st 2012 – June 3rd 2012
SHOWRUNNER: David Benioff & D. B. Weiss
WRITTEN BY: David Benioff, D. B. Weiss, Bryan Cogman, Vanessa Taylor & George R. R. Martin
DIRECTED BY: Alan Taylor, Alik Sakharov, David Petrarca, David Nutter & Neil Marshall
MUSIC BY:  Ramin Djawadi
STARRING:
Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Michelle Fairley, Emilia Clarke, Aiden Gillen, Iain Glen, Kit Harrington, Liam Cunningham, Isaac Hempstead Wright, Richard Madden, Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams, Alfie Allen, John Bradley, Jack Gleeson, Rory McCann, Stephen Dillane, Carice van Houten, James Cosmo, Jerome Flynn, Conleth Hill, Sibel Kekilli, Natalie Dormer & Charles Dance

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