Let me get this out of the way: I don’t care if Jon Snow is dead or not. It won’t affect my feelings toward Game of Thrones. Anyone watching Game of Thrones should know not to become too invested in any character. This isn’t a story with protagonists and antagonists. This is a story in which everyone is the protagonist…at least in their own mind. The guys that killed Snow believed that they were right into killing them. They even make a compelling argument especially to those that haven’t seen the White Walkers.
That being said, I thought the first episode of season six was a very good episode. Cristina and one of our doctors disagree with me.
There will be spoilers after the jump so don’t click unless you have seen the episode.
The show started strong by picking up right where season five left off with Jon Snow’s lifeless body in the snow at Castle Black. What was interesting is that as much as the audience likes Snow, very few coming to his defense. But this episode did an excellent job of making us realize that this world is a lot larger than the wall.
My least favorite sequence was the Braavos segment. However, that was mainly because of how short the segment was. Arya has an interesting story, but this segment just reminded you she was actually blind. Close to this was the Meereen segment. Varys and Tyrion are two of the more interesting characters on the show, if not the most, and the actors have great chemistry. However, this was a lot talk about things we already knew.
Daenerys, in the Dothraki Sea portion of the program, has a great moment. Having her interact with Khal Moro reminds you of how timid she was in the first episode compared to the regal character she has become at this point of the story. When she informs Moro who she is, she demands respect. Moro gives her the respect a Khal’s widow deserves, which may not be a good thing.
Cersei is hated by most, but her motivations aren’t evil. She has a lust for power and fierce dedication to her kids. Even though she grew up not wanting, she has not had an easy life. After the deserved hell she went through last year, the look on her face when she learned her daughter was coming home reminded us that there is a human who can love underneath her ruthlessness. I am not ashamed to admit that I really route for Jaime. He isn’t a good person, but he aspires to be. I am looking forward to see how they get their revenge. I haven’t cared for the who religious plot, no matter how wonderful Jonathon Pryce is, so I don’t really have anything to say about it.
In the North, Reek again rediscovered his name is actually Theon. He was brave and noble. Brieene and Podrick kicked some ass. Ramsey was his normal worse person in any universe. At the wall, Thorne makes an interesting case in defense of killing Snow. It’s hard for the audience to not think Thorne is a jerk, but from his point of view, it’s hard to argue with his logic. He hasn’t seen what Snow has seen. He doesn’t know how bad it can get. Ser Devos shows for an illiterate he is an excellent reader of people. He knows Thorne will not let him and Snow’s men go and does his best to stall. The big reveal that Melisandre wasn’t really all that surprising and just shows that magic comes with a price.
If you believe Vulture, Dorne should be wiped off the map. I can’t disagree more (Note: I have read the books and keep them separate in my head…the book doesn’t affect how I watch the TV show and vice versa). Game of Thrones, they posit, is about politics. Politics is about doing smart things to get what you want. You destroy people not out of passion but because it is a means to end. You have to be smart to win at politics. Rarely, do the smart people (Tyrion, Jon Snow, Prince Oberyn) win. Game of Thrones is about the passion for power. The smart people don’t win. The strong people win. Oberyn was smart but appeared weak. Killing him makes sense. The fact that none of his guards, save one, moved illustrates this fact. Again, it isn’t a smart move, but hey, look at this election cycle and tell me it isn’t realistic. And remember, Jaime will not let the killing of his daughter go. Not because he was exceptionally maternal, but because of his love for Cersei. The royal house will be distracted by the south when the real threat is from the North.