Massive Spoiler Alert. Do not read unless you are fully up to date to Series 8 Episode 5
I think the backlash against the MoD’s actions in the last episode has been overdone as it ignores just about everything that has gone before, but I do think her ‘change’ could have been handled better.
For just about the entire show, Daenerys has been talking in vengeful terms – and it is only her advisors that have stopped her carrying out these actions. For example at Qaath she told the rulers of the city that when her dragons were fully grown she would burn cities to the ground. She said similar to different people at different times, about Mereen, Junkai, Astapor and Volantis. Remember it was only Tyrion that stopped her from burning King’s Landing down on numerous occasions.
We also saw, in one of the earlier series, a sequence where Daenerys is walking through the ruins of the throne room. It looks like snow is falling – but I wonder if this was actually supposed to be snow – or was it charred remains (echoes of Schindler’s List)?
So essentially we’ve been told all along that – were it not for her advisors holding her back – the MoD was not averse to destroying her enemies (including civilians) by burning their cities. This kind of makes me wonder why so many – Tyrion, Varys, Ser Jorah, Ser Barriston – were so keen to see her as something different and not just another despot in the making?.... Yes, she was determined to free people from slavery, but the constant reference to burning cities should perhaps have been a bit of a concern – particularly given her family history?
Despite the above, personally I think it would have been better had there been some sort of recognisable catalyst that made Daenerys go full Mad Queen during the battle and after the bells had been rung to signify surrender. After all, this is just plain and simple mass murder for mass murder’s sake. For example after the surrender (borrowing from the Japanese) some members of the Lannister army could have continued fighting once the enemies guard was down – maybe killing Grey Worm in the process.
Without a catalyst mid-battle, there was another way this change in the MoD could have been shown better. I suspect the problem is pacing of the show and that there were so few episodes available. This led to everything being rushed. Yes we see John reject her ‘love’, yes we see the death of two of her ‘children’, yes we see the murder of Missandei, the death of Ser Jorah and that the people seem to love and gravitate towards John – who she knows has a better claim to the throne. So yes, at the time she made the decision to burn King’s Landing it’s fair to say she was not ‘feeling at her best’ but for such an action to be taken, I think there needed to have been more time spent showing her character develop and for the change to full on Mad Queen.
But either way she is now simply a mad-as-a-balloon war criminal for which there is no way back; she has to be stopped. Who will do it (if anyone) and what is in store for the main characters that are left? It comes down to: Sansa and Arya (Stark), Daenerys (Targaryen), Bran (who says he’s not really Bran anymore – so what is he?) and Tyrion (Lannister).
The battles (tactics) in this series have been a bit clumsy and just a thought on Drogon and the Scorpions. Drogon destroyed the Iron Fleet in seconds - without a scratch – whereas in the previous episode Rhaegel was killed and Drogon was forced to retreat due to the accuracy of the Scorpion fire. I think there should have been a better explanation for this. The makers tried to show the effect of Drogon coming out of the sun (the old Luftwaffe trick – beware of the Hun in the Sun) by Euron’s squinting – but this was insufficient explanation and they should have shown a sequence where the Scorpion teams were unable to fire accurately as they were impeded by the sun’s glare. Without that explanation the change in effectiveness of the Scorpions from last episode to this, seemed too much.
Finally just one thought on Jamie. I have no problem with how he ended up going back to Cersei – it’s one of GoT’s strengths that people are not just ‘good’ or ‘bad’ but are multi-faceted, but I wish more time had been allowed (a pacing issue once again) to show his inner turmoil as he battled with ‘good’ Jamie and ‘bad’ Jamie – a battle the good could not ultimately win. He clearly was not a nice character – as he told Brienne, he was prepared to kill a child for Cersei and he killed his own cousin to get back to Cersei (not to mention having four children with his sister). But he was also capable of ‘good’ actions – his protective feelings toward Tyrion from childhood, his determination to save Brienne from rape/death and his realisation that the Knight King needed to be stopped. There should have been more time devoted to his battle with himself. As it was, I fully expected that when he left Brienne to head back to King’s Landing, he was going there to kill Cersei. While leading the audience down one path to set up a twist in the tale can be a good thing - this just felt like a let down.
< Message edited by warspite1 -- 5/15/2019 7:38:27 AM >
England expects that every man will do his duty. Horatio Nelson October 1805