Battle Of The Bastards : ‘Game Of Thrones’ Season 6, Episode 9 – Review

Oh, and the Dothraki show up and ride roughshod into Meereen to kill the Sons of the Harpy on the ground. I’m sure a horde of horse lords in the streets of Meereen will be a totally okay thing for the city and won’t cause any problems whatsoever.

Image via HBO

Number Two

The second most important thing that happens takes place just before the parlay and swift defeat of the Masters. Daenerys tells Tyrion her plans. She’s going to kill all the masters and burn their cities to the ground, returning the ancient metropolis’s to the dirt.

This is when Tyrion tells her the truth about her father. He tells her about the wild fire, and the Mad King’s orders to burn King’s Landing and all its people to the ground.

“This is entirely different,” she shoots back. But Tyrion reminds her that she’s talking about burning entire cities to the ground. It’s not so different at all. It’s a good reminder to the increasingly ruthless young Targaryen. If she has any of her father’s madness, I could see things going very badly for the people of Westeros when she finally arrives there.

Number Three

The third important thing involves teleportation.

You see, Theon and Yara Greyjoy must have teleported to reach Meereen this quickly. Either that or the show’s timeline is just wacky and nonsensical. Meereen is literally on the other side of the world from the Iron Islands. The Greyjoys would have needed to sail south from the Iron Islands (which are north and west of King’s Landing) all the way past Dorne, then around the southern spread of the continent and across the narrow sea. At this point, they would still be about that entire distance all over again away from Meereen. They’d need to sail hundreds more miles just to reach Old Valyria before they were even able to enter Slaver’s Bay. It’s a jaw dropping distance.

That the show has taken to just teleporting everyone everywhere speaks to its need to speed things up and just get the story over with, which is a shame. Littlefinger and his army can teleport from the Vale to the North with no issues. I guess Lord Frey didn’t mind letting them past the Twins without a fight. Brienne was able to teleport to Riverrun from the North even faster than Jaime was able to teleport from King’s Landing to Casterly Rock (where one assumes the army is, or else why haven’t the Lannisters simply used those seven thousand men to stomp the High Sparrow’s head in?) to Riverrun. I could go on. The point is, the show has done away with any semblance of travel, and travel is a hugely important part of what made this show to begin with.

Tyrion’s travels and trials in Westeros introduced us to Bronn and to the mad Lysa Arryn, and helped us understand who Tyrion is and how he deals with tough situations. Jaime and Brienne traveling from Riverrun to King’s Landing resulted in Jaime getting his hand cut off, and in his first true acts of selflessness and valor. Even just the journey from Winterfell to King’s Landing in the very beginning of the show was crucial to our understanding of the world and its characters. On this road, Sansa’s direwolf was killed and Arya’s fled (never to be seen again.) Joffrey revealed just how much of a human piece of dung he truly was, and we got our first glimpse of the cruel Hound. We learned so much on that road.

But those roads no longer exist in this show, because everybody just fast travels everywhere and it doesn’t matter how distant anyone is from anywhere, they’ll show up in the next episode without a doubt or a scratch.

In any case, Theon and Yara make a deal with Daenerys. They’ll give her their ships so long as she helps them against Euron and gives them back the Iron Islands. Dany, in return, wants them to stop reeving and raiding and raping, which Yara agrees to.

The conversation is pretty good, though I think all of this would be far more interesting if we knew Euron had a dragon horn that could control dragons. Oh well, that’s been cut. Now Dany and her ships will teleport to Westeros, I guess, and her huge army of barbarians and dragons will totally upset whatever sort of political dynamic was at play there. I’m still not sure how they’re supposed to handle any of this. Maybe a big war with the Iron Fleet will decrease her numbers? Though she could simply burn Euron’s ships with her dragons.

I did like how each of the characters in the throne room had terrible fathers. Tywin Lannister was a terrible father to Tyrion, and a power-hungry, brutal, cold opportunistic man. Aerys Targaryen was far worse, still. And Balon Greyjoy was just a miserable old bastard. Dany agrees that all their fathers were terrible, but unlike them she wants to make the world a better place. My question is whether she will, or whether her horde will make things far worse. Of course, perhaps even that will be worthwhile so long as her dragons can stop the White Walkers.

An odd episode for Father’s Day with all this talk of wicked fathers and bastards and the like. They should have tossed in a Sam scene with his loving dad just to round things out.

Still, a very good, action-packed episode if you just look past teleportation and some weird sibling dynamics up in the North.

What did you think?

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