“A girl is Arya Stark of Winterfell and I’m going home.”
With the eighth and final season beginning this month we’re looking at each season to see where we’ve been so far. You can read our Game of Thrones 101 here, and our season six recap here. For now we’re going to look at season six as a whole, and whether the hype surrounding the show is merited.
Based on the popular book series by George R. R. Martin, A Song of Fire and Ice, Game of Thrones centers on the fictional land of Westeros. The land is ruled by whoever sits on the iron throne, and through the years the leaders of the seven main houses have fought for the right to rule the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. The series became an immediate hit for HBO, and helped define the idea of peak TV.
Season six is without a doubt the best season thus far. Everything we’ve been waiting for since season one is finally coming together. By the end of the season, Daenerys has multiple armies following her, and is headed on a fleet of ships to Westeros with Tyrion at her side. Jon Snow and Sansa Stark have retaken Winterfell and Jon is declared the King of the North. Arya has finished her training with the Faceless Men in Braavos and killed Walder Frey, beginning the final journey on her path for vengeance. The Tyrells in King’s Landing and the Sparrows have all been killed by Cersei Lannister, who has claimed the throne after Tommen kills himself. Bran returns to the Wall as the three-eyed raven, ready to help fight the dead, with the knowledge that Jon is actually the son of his aunt Lyanna.
After five seasons of build up, everything is finally coming together, and the results have been insanely satisfying. Seeing Jon Snow leave the Night’s Watch, to then lead armies against Ramsay Bolton is beyond entertaining, and results in one of the best episodes of the series. Watching Daenerys lead an army of Dothraki soldiers to retake Meereen with her Dragons, and kill the Masters, is the type of power move she’s been needing for two or three seasons. There literally isn’t a single character who hasn’t become everything that we’ve wanted them to be by the end of season six.
There is truly no way to describe the sixth season beyond saying that it’s insanely satisfying and like a full deep breath of fresh air. As the show seemed to almost drag leading it’s characters down their paths in the previous season, this season is the ultimate payoff. The season sets up sides for the final battles. It sets the terms for how things will work moving forward. It cuts out all of the smaller battles, like the Freys, so that we can focus on the Starks, Lannisters and Daenerys. There may be two seasons left of the series at this point, but as of now, this is truly the endgame for the show. Game of Thrones may be ramping up for the end, but it’s without a doubt better than ever.