A lot has been said about season 6 of Game of Thrones being a weird season for book readers. For the first time we know just as much as the newbies. For the first time we can be just as shocked as the newbies were during Baelor and The Red Wedding. No one knows what’s going to happen next. In a way I have been waiting for that. Don’t get me wrong. In a perfect world George R.R. Martin would have finished the books before the TV series caught up to him. That would have been the best for everyone. But, I knew from the start that Martin wouldn’t write fast enough so from the moment season 1 started I was looking forward to the moment I could be genuinely shocked. That moment that my jaw would drop, my eyes would tear up and my face would spell total disbelieve. Cause isn’t that why we do it? Why we go to the cinema, watch TV shows, why we read? To have an emotional reaction to whatever it is we are experiencing? Game of Thrones couldn’t give me that and was still awesome. It was still one of the best series I have ever seen. But now, when all bets are off. When I can experience the show just like newbies can, it adds another level to an already awesometacular experience. It doesn’t make the show better necessarily. But it sure as hell adds something. And the masterful The Door hit me just as hard as anyone else. I’m loving it.
Sansa meets Littlefinger in Mole’s Town. He tries to apologize but Sansa isn’t having it and even contemplates to have him killed by Brienne who has accompanied her. Littlefinger tells Sansa that the Blackfish has taken back Riverrun and his army might be able to help her. He also offer the knights of the Vale but Sansa refuses his offer. Tyrion seeks the help of Red Priestess Kinvara in Mereen. Arya continues her training with the Waif and gets a new assignment. During the Kingsmoot Theon supports Yara but when it seems that she will be chosen Euro appears. He admits to killing Balon and after his speech he is chosen to rule the Iron Islands leaving Yara and Theon to flee.
Bran is bored and goes into a vision on his own. The Night King sees him and leaves his mark on him, causing the cave of the Three-eyed Raven to be compromised. This leads to the Three-Eyed Raven having to teach Bran everything he knows while the White Walkers attack. The Night’s King and a few Walkers enter the cave as the army of wights find another way in. Meera and the remaining Children of the Forest try to hold them off but fail. The Three-eyed Raven is killed by the Night King. Meera, Hodor and Leaf flee. Leaf sacrifices herself buying the rest time. When Meera leaves the cave with Bran on a sled she instructs Hodor to hold the door to keep the wights from coming out and pursuing them. All the while Bran is in a vision in Winterfell watching his father leave for the Vale. Meera’s shouting seeps into the vision which and a young Hodor hears her. This causes him to have a seizure and we find out how he became Hodor. In the present Hodor is killed while holding the door closed to keep the wights from getting out.
What I liked
Wow. This was a great episode with an insanely emotional end. Excellent work by Jack Bender and everyone involved. There were a lot of good scenes in this one including the scene between Sansa and Littlefinger but the final scene was one of the best of Game of Thrones ever if not the best. The switching back between past and present. The action and chaos with the wights. The heart-breaking seizure of young Hodor. The death of Hodor. I watched the episode twice and I teared up twice. It was heartbreakingly well done. I was disappointed when I found out David Nutter would not be back this season, though I understand that he needed a break. But when I heard Jack Bender would make his debut as a Game of Thrones director I was happy. He has directed a couple of classic Lost episodes and he is very capable. I was hoping for a great episode from him. I didn’t expect a legendary one. He is a big part of how great it was. But he is not the only reason. The acting was perfect. The choreography was fantastic. And the music fit perfectly. I can’t say often enough how good this was.
What I didn’t like
Mereen was just put in this episode to check in with the storyline there. It didn’t add much. It was a decent scene and Kinvara was well cast. But it didn’t need to be in this episode.
What I’m looking forward to
The showrunners have said that Martin revealed three major secrets to them in a meeting in a hotel. I can’t wait for the other reveal.
Notes from the ravens
Hold the door! Hold the door! Hold the door! Hodoor…
Man, I still haven’t recovered from this episode and I’m not sure that I ever will
It happens in nearly every TV show that main characters keep secrets from each other while it doesn’t make any sense and it ends up biting them in the ass. I don’t know why Sansa chose to lie to Jon. But it annoys me.
We sure as hell haven’t seen the last of Littlefinger and his army
Again, I know that the showrunners have expressed difficulty having the direwolves on the show but the wolves being picked off like that pisses me off!
Goodbye Hodor. You shall be missed!
Lord Jesus! We have seen a lot of evidence of the power of the Lord of Light. But if even Varys freaks out then shit is real!
When Bran called Leaf on the Children creating the White Walkers I thought her reaction was a bit misplaced. Yes, they created them as a defence against humans. But, she could have at least admitted their colossal mistake.