TV Review: Game of Thrones, Season 6, Episode 9 “Battle of the Bastards”

Last Updated on July 31, 2021

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EPISODE 9: Battle of the Bastards

THE PLOT : Winter is coming, and with it, the white walkers. If those still standing don't band together soon, the iron throne may become a throne of ice.

THE LOWDOWN: (The following column contains MAJOR SPOILERS, so I don't recommend reading this if you haven't watched this episode). If this season has done one thing right, it’s get the stories moving and the characters finally interacting on a huge level. No episode has done this better than tonight’s. Yes, it’s called ‘Battle of the Bastards’, which promises an epic battle for Winterfell, but we open up with a very different battle, one I wasn’t sure we’d see tonight. The masters feel they’ve won the day, but then we get the one thing we’ve all been waiting for since those damn dragons hatched at the end of season one…a full scale dragon assault with Dany leading atop Drogon. I can’t even begin to describe how epically phenomenal this looked and felt. The scene itself couldn’t have been brought to life any better, it’s exactly what I envisioned, so needless to say, my expectations were met. The Night King has no idea what’s coming for his frosty ass.

But this wasn’t all to come out of Meereen tonight. When we cut back to Dany and Tyrion, they’re talking to Yara and Theon. I didn’t expect Tyrion to be impressed by Theon’s presence, but clearly Dany is impressed by Yara—both would be underdogs oozing with girl power. A pact is made, and it looks like Euron’s reign will be a short one. It’s never quite that easy in Game of Thrones, so I’m sure we’ll encounter a bump or two in the road, but all thing’s considered, it looks like Dany’s en route to Westeros.

The battle for Winterell is both visually and stylistically the best battle we’ve seen on the show thus far. The numbers feel real, the blows feel real, and the scope feels deadly real. Sure, it starts out like with arrows and foot soldiers, but quickly escalates to an all-out Braveheart style bloodbath. Heads are flying, limbs are being torn off every which way, the bodies are literally piling up, so much so, that poor Jon almost gets trampled and buried. The intensity of the battle is obviously high, with Rickon getting smoked—seriously though, that kid didn’t have a damn chance and everyone knew it. I was happy to see Tormund live through it all, and Jon beat the bejesus out of Ramsay, but what a great end to that little shit, feeding him to his own dogs. Now THAT, ladies and gentlemen, will be one of the most re-watched scenes of this series to be sure.

GAME OF THRONES SEASON 6’s ninth episode is without a doubt the best episode of the season, and I dare say, one of the top five best of the series. There were a lot of stakes and moving parts to this battle. On the one hand, we have Davos, who finds the wooden horse he gave Shireen amidst some burnt rubble. He says nothing about it at first, but he’s clutching it very tightly after the battle, looking at Melisandre with daggers in his eyes. Then we have Littlefinger, who helped win the day (all part of his master plan, I’m sure), and as I said before, I can’t wait to see what he has to say about all this. Seeing the Stark banner on the walls of Winterfell is such a rewarding sight to behold. I just hope that once the dust settles, the untied forces who won Winterfell stay aligned, rather than fall apart. I’m assuming we won’t have to see much more of these storylines next week for the finale, as they feel rather wrapped for the season, which leaves King’s Landing, Arya (maybe) and Bran (hopefully). I’d love to see Bran and Benjen show up at Winterfell, but we may have to wait until next season for that. I can’t believe next week’s the finale, but I sure am excited.

SEX/NUDITY: No time for that tonight, we got Masters and Boltons to kill. Though I’m fairly certain Yara was hitting on Dany…and she didn’t seem to mind.

VIOLENCE: Jesus, there was enough violence in this one episode to put most seasons of violent shows to shame.

MOST EPIC SCENE: Yes, I hate Ramsay. So yes, his end was very gratifying. Yet, I’m a bigger fan of dragons, so seeing Dany and her three dragons unleash hell is the chart topper.




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