TV

‘Game Of Thrones’ Death Watch: Beware Of Weasels With Crossbows


HBO

The Game of Thrones Death Watch is a weekly roundup of who died and who looks like they might be headed for death, written by me, a person who has not read the books and will go a long, long way to make a very stupid joke. This is what we’re doing here. This is not science. Please do not yell at me.

Season 8, Episode 4 – “The Last Stark”

WHO DIED THIS WEEK?

HBO

Missandei

Missandei’s death puts me in a tricky spot. On one hand, it makes me very sad. Missandei was cool. She and Grey Worm were easily the best couple in all of the Seven Kingdoms, or at least they were until Tormund adopted Ghost and headed North. (There’s your damn spin-off, HBO.) I wanted them to be as happy as they wanted themselves to be, sitting on some beach, sipping umbrella drinks, just sighing peacefully as the sun sets on another perfect day in paradise.

On the other hand, I feel very validated, albeit belatedly. It was the speech, the one I just mentioned, the one where she and Grey Worm made very specific plans on the eve of a very dangerous battle. This, as I discussed at length, is a violation of Rule Number One of action movies. It was kind of a violation of two rules, actually, because their conversation was a mix of the “one last job” speech and the “one week until retirement speech.” The show made me look prettyyyyy silly by having both of them survive the Battle of Winterfell. It threw everything I knew about the world into flux. If characters can just talk like this and survive, I mean, what’s next? A bad guy inviting the hero to an expensive dinner and then explaining — via a long monologue — that they are so different?

Unacceptable. Just madness. Apologies to Missandei, who, again, seemed very cool, and whose death might end up pushing Daenerys and Grey Worm into some very rash decisions in the very near future, but she had to go just to keep the universe from folding in on itself. Rules are rules.

Rhaegal the Dragon

HBO

This sucks and not just for the reasons you think. Yes, clearly, there’s the obvious one where the show has now killed off a dragon in two consecutive weeks, almost as though someone said “Yooooo, we’ve only got a few episodes left and we need to figure out how to even things up a little, considering one contender has two dragons and another has an ice dragon and the one we want to portray as the most formidable has zero dragons. But how?” Well, that’s how. You take one out as a casualty of war and you take a second one out just en route to the fight, before it even starts in full. I’m mad. I’m really mad. Part of me wishes Jon Snow had died instead. There, I said it.

I do understand, though. It’s been an issue on the show for a while now. Why didn’t the lady with three firebreathing dragons and a singular obsession with ruling the kingdoms just go take the kingdoms with her three dragons? The show needs obstacles and fair fights and, even though it would have been hilarious if Dany roasted King’s Landing multiple seasons ago and we all just kept watching as the show became a glorified network procedural about life under Queen Daenerys, taking out the winged beasts of doom gets us there quickest. Fine. Ugh, but fine.

The more important reason this sucks, though, is that last season, when the big dumb crossbow was introduced, I titled an edition of this very Death Watch column “Ain’t Nobody Killing A Dragon With A Damn Crossbow” and now I look like a fool. Again. In my defense, this was before we saw the Night King take down a dragon with a magical javelin. We were all very naive then. But still, this is hurtful to me, personally.

Euron really knocked a dragon out of the sky with a crossbow, man. That’s wild.

Gendry, emotionally

HBO

There’s a degree to which this is playing fast and loose with the terms set forth by the column’s title (“Death Watch”), seeing as Gendry is still quite alive. The counterpoint to this is that a person rarely survives having their chest torn open and their heart ripped out of their body. Arya is correct to turn down his proposal, obviously. Gendry is just high off of lust and victory and he’s talking a little crazy. This would never work, for a few reasons. To be fair to Gendry, though, ”making love to a woman who promptly goes out and slays a demon ice wizard and then waking up the next day and becoming surprise royalty” is a heck of a ride. If there was ever a time to shoot your shot, I mean…

Tough break, kid.

The audience when Tormund gets going

HBO

The man can really work a room.

Jon’s libido

HBO

If you look very closely, you can see the exact moment that Jon remembers his girlfriend is actually his aunt. I’m surprised they even let it get this far, though. I know things have been pretty crazy around there lately, what with wars and funerals and probably so much burning flesh smell in the air for hours, but I do not think I would at any point forget that my girlfriend is actually my aunt. Or the other way, that my boyfriend is actually my nephew. These two got as far as snuggling and bedroom eyes before they were like “Ahhhhh right. The thing. Well, crap.”

That’s very funny to me. What kind of life are you living that something like that slips your mind for even one millisecond? Wouldn’t you wake up thinking about it? And yet there they were, lips locked, buttons almost unbuttoned, just completely oblivious. Neither of them is fit to rule. Let Tormund be king.

WHO MIGHT DIE?

HBO

Cersei

It would be pretty funny if after all this, after all the manipulation and duplicity and decapitating beloved characters in front of their boyfriends, Cersei just won it all next episode and the series finale was an 80-minute single shot of her sipping wine and smirking. That probably won’t happen. I imagine someone will be killing her before this all ends.

The bigger question is who gets to do it. There’s a long list of people who would like to, to which Dany and Grey Worm have just been added in bold letters. Arya wants to kill her. Sansa wants to kill her. Brienne probably wants to kill her now, for reasons we’ll discuss shortly. There are thousands of people we’ve never met who would like to kill her, too. She has enemies, man, everywhere.

This brings up a good point: It would also be funny if, after all this, Cersei gets killed by some random townsperson named Kelly in a road rage incident or something. Can’t rule it out.

The Mountain

HBO

Did you see it? Did you see The Hound say the thing about unfinished business? Did you realize what he might have been talking about? Did you?

Because I screamed “CLEGANE BOWL” so loud that it deactivated my screensaver.

Euron

HBO

Euron is the second character on the show, and the only living person in all of Westeros, who has killed a dragon. I feel like he’s earned the nickname “The Dragonslayer” now. He probably feels that way, too. He’s probably going to try to make it a thing as soon as the next episode. He might do it between episodes, to be honest. We could open up next week on him saying, like, “I told you to call me the Dragonslayer now” to some poor putz. It would be a very Euron thing to do.

But yes, he will definitely end up dead before this is over. Unless he doesn’t. But he will.

Varys and/or Tyrion

HBO

The smart money here is on Varys playing his hand too strong and getting roasted by the one remaining dragon. The reasons for this are plenty:

  • He’s the one trying to take the throne away from Dany
  • Dany does not take kindly to these kinds of things
  • If Varys gets his way and Jon ends up on the throne, Jon will probably not execute Tyrion
  • Dany is going a little nutty right now and does not exactly seem to have things under control

Rest In Peace, Varys.

Dany and/or Sansa

HBO

These two hate each other so much. I love it. Like half the runtime of this extended episode is just Sansa and Dany burning each other with withering stares. Look at this one. You could, say, melt a centuries-old wall with the heat from those looks, like they were blue flames from an ice dragon. I am eating it up.

Sansa is the one who is really skating on thin ice right now, even though most of what she’s doing is pretty reasonable. Jon does have a better claim, Dany is descended from madness and falling apart a bit, the people of the North do love Jon very much, as clearly depicted in the hilarious scene where Dany is sitting by herself and watching as all the other tables at lunch are having fun without her. She’s gone full Regina George. You hate to see it.

Sansa’s not blameless here, either. She did turn right around and spill the secret about Jon’s parentage, like immediately, at the very first opportunity it was potentially useful to her. That wasn’t super cool. You get the feeling she doesn’t so much want Jon to be king as she wants Dany to take her dragons and go home. Hmm. Upon review, maybe Sansa is the Regina George of the situation. I will need someone to expand this into a 5000-word explainer by mid-week.

Jaime

HBO

Jaime listed all the awful stuff he’s done and I was listening like “Yeah, the killing and window-pushing is bad, but if he really runs out on Brienne after their one magical night and leaves her crying in a castle, I swear to God.” And then he did it. Not okay. Guy has to die now. That’s just how it goes.

Hopefully, Tormund hears about this and goes riding into King’s Landing on Ghost’s back on a mission for revenge. Crush his stupid head with that war club. Feed his ass to the direwolf. The man is a scoundrel.

×