Liam rocks out another review of another great episode. Read it here!
As many of those of you who browse social media on Sunday nights know, season six of Game of Thrones (GOT) continues this week with the seventh episode of the season “The Broken Man.” “The Broken Man” continues this season’s winning streak, revealing more information and returning characters that will propel the story forward. The end of the season is coming and all has been too well for our characters this season. I suspect that soon the blood will flow. Over the season so far, the focus has really been about returning characters and marching to the inevitable end game of the season. Many midseason episodes for shows, especially Game of Thrones, can suffer from a lack of forward momentum.
|If I stare any harder, I may have an accident in my pants. Beware.|
Look at last year’s season and you will see what I mean. Stories can often suffer when they are slave to ratings or the producers will to move forward. Thankfully, the show runners decided to move the story forward and it has had a huge impact on the show as a whole. The show feels leaner and every element feels important. We no longer have to deal with our smug friends who think they are better than us because they read the damn books. Not knowing what happens next has really reinvigorated the show in a lot of ways. In many ways, the show last season was the broken man in desperate need of a change.
|Twas once but a mere pony.|
But is now a real horse. Beware.
This episode is about people needing to change and adapt to the world around them. It’s an episode about asking questions. How do we fit into the world of Westeros after all the mayhem and bloodshed that the constant state of war has brought us? What happens to us after we die? What do we stand for? Every character this week asks themselves these questions and goes through this dilemma. Is the Hound capable of being a good person? Can House Stark be reborn? Can Arya reclaim her own identity and self worth? Great episodes of television ask this not only of their characters but their audience. We think alongside them and wonder what happens next. It’s so refreshing to be able to actually appreciate great character work alongside of great action and drama. So many shows forget about this. The last shot of this episode is not a shocking ending but it is an ending that impacts the character. So many shitty shows try and use the cliffhanger as an excuse to throw in some last minute drama. Thankfully, the show runners at Thrones are smart enough to allow the episode to end in a bitter and sad way for a fan favorite character. It’s nice when the creators value character over water cooler moments.
Many actors shined this week. Kit Harrington and Sophie Turner have managed to do a wonderful job this season and I hope we get to see more of them. Jon Snow and Sansa have really come into their own as characters. Maisie Williams is brilliant as ever as Arya Stark and has done a stellar job this season. Seriously, she is doing amazing work. Rory McCann does great work this week as the Hound, reminding us why we fell in love with that character. Everybody else was good, but those three stood out in my mind this week. Also, it was cool to see Ian McShane in this week’s episode. (C’mon, HBO, we are waiting for that Deadwood movie!)
Overall, this week’s episode did a great job of raising the stakes and focusing on the characters. I am so happy that this season has been so fantastic. I can’t wait to see where the next three episodes take us.
Until next week, Liam.