Tuesday, June 2, 2015

My Quick Take on “Hardhome”

There is little time to write this week, but I have a minute to offer my quick take on last week’s episode of Game of Thrones titled “Hardhome.” In short, it was the best episode of the year and further proof that despite the show’s divergence from the books, HBO’s writers are doing their job well.

Without "Hardhome," we might have forgotten about his kind.
Let me start by pointing out that the dramatic battle with the White Walkers is not in the books. Rather, in A Dance With Dragons, a group of wildlings have gone to Hardhome and Jon sends men to help them, worried about their fate at the hands of the Walkers. But he never goes there himself. That said, the book includes page after page that reminds us of the growing threat of the Walkers now that winter is coming. 

The show, by contrast, doesn’t have the luxury of lots of pages of Jon Snow worrying about the Walkers, so instead the writers inserted one spectacular battle to remind us all of the danger that lies beyond The Wall. Without this scene, I doubt viewers would have even thought about the White Walkers this season. And, with no harm to the story, the show has Tormund, the Wildlings, and that giant heading back to Castle Black, just where they need to be to wrap things up like they do in the books.

This has to be what GRRM has in store for Tyrion.
Meanwhile, Sansa’s story became even more interesting now that Theon has confessed he never killed Bran and Rickon (in the books, this is revealed to Jon, since Sam encounters Bran before he goes beyond the Wall). Also, Tyrion is filling in quite nicely as Daenerys’ consigliere. While Tyrion never even gets inside Meereen in A Dance With Dragons, I have to believe this is what George R.R. Martin has planned for his character in The Winds Of Winter. Only Ser Jorah’s fate remains up in the air – though I bet we’ll learn next episode what happens to him. In fact, I expect next episode to focus heavily on the Meereen storyline. After all, it’s titled “The Dance With Dragons.”

* Images courtesy of Rotten Tomatoes

1 comment:

Bill said...

Thanks, Joe. Good points!
The "making of" show last winter showed how they had created Hardhome at a rock quarry in N. Ireland if I recall.