Game of Thrones has a problem. The show is now one episode — 80 minutes, give or take — away from its conclusion and things are kind of a mess. Cersei is dead. The Night King is dead. Two of the three dragons are dead. King’s Landing is a pile of ash and charred bodies. Fans are upset about all of it. Some fans are really upset. And now the show has almost backed itself into a corner where either Dany gets to continue her freshly-started reign of terror or Jon and/or Arya has to kill her to prevent it from happening. People are going to be mad either way. That’s why the show should just make the final episode about Tormund and the dog instead.
All of it. All 80 minutes. Just Tormund and Ghost, the direwolf Jon gave up without so much as a belly rub or a little ear scratchy, roaming the North, going on little adventures, like a version of Turner & Hooch where Tom Hanks is a flame-haired ogre who suckled at the teat of a giant whose husband he killed and Hooch is a snow white fictional wolf. What kind of adventures? I’m glad you asked. Options include:
- Ghost steals Tormund’s jacket and won’t give it back
- Tormund keeps calling Ghost “a dog” — hence the title of this post — and Ghost growls at him each time
- The two of them solve a murder mystery
- A big mean bear corners one of them and the other saves the day
- Guess what, Ghost can talk now
- Maybe Davos shows up
- Brienne can come, too
- Tormund tries to housebreak Ghost and hilarity ensues
- Cortez and his crew have a big heroin shipment coming into the docks but the chief has already taken Tormund and Ghost off the case so they have to go in and thwart him with no backup
And so on. Or none of that. Maybe they just traipse around in the snow and become pals. I don’t know. I’m just throwing some stuff against a wall here. All I do know is that it would be pretty funny if the series finale of the biggest show in the world was just about a goofy giant and his new canine best friend. And why shouldn’t it be? You’re telling me there’s a better plan in place? Sure, maybe there’s “a plan” that “ties together a number of themes from previous seasons” and “provides some level of closure,” but who wants any of that? Not me! More of this, please.
Here’s the other thing: People are going to be mad no matter what happens in the finale. A big chunk of the audience is already primed to dislike it based on the events of previous episodes. As I said above, there’s really only two plays left: One, Dany kills Jon and Tyrion and probably Arya and completes her rushed journey from Breaker of Chains to Roaster of Peasants: two, Jon and/or Arya steps in to stop her and has to kill her, thus putting Jon Snow on the throne, which isn’t as dangerous in the short term to the people of Westeros — if the kingdoms had open elections, a platform consisting of only “I will probably not kill your family in the streets with my winged, fire-breathing beast” might be enough to take it down — but isn’t a great long-term solution either because Jon is dumb as heck. He is so dumb. He has been dumb for a long time and he’s still dumb now. Why does he do any of the things he does? I don’t know!
That’s what the whole discussion will be about once the show ends. That’s what Monday is going to be. Dozens and dozens of takes about Dany’s mental state and Jon’s unearned heroism or lack thereof. And if everyone is already going to be mad, why not scrap the whole thing and give them an episode about Tormund and Ghost instead? Sure, they’ll still be mad. Possibly even madder. But it would be really, really funny. And, like, at least this version has Tormund and Ghost in it. Has to count for something.
Part of this is an offshoot of my “eh, let’s just root for Euron Greyjoy” plan. The chaos of it all appeals to me. My rule has always been this: if you can’t make it good, at least make it crazy. That’s what this would be. People would lose their minds. The progression of tweets alone… my god. Because everything would start out fine (“oh cool, there’s Tormund and Ghost!”), but then it would start to turn around minute 15 (“uhhh are we going to King’s Landing soon”), and then it would explode into anarchy. It would make me so happy. That’s what’s important here. My happiness.
There’s a compromise in all of this, too. We keep the full episode about Tormund and Ghost, of course, but then, right at the very end, a raven comes flying in with a message that reads “Dragon Queen dead. Silly boy now king. Thousands of peasants dead.” And then Tormund looks at it, arches an eyebrow quizzically, and throws it straight into a river.
Ninety-four percent on Rotten Tomatoes.