Game of Thrones Season 6 Episode 9: Battle of the Bastards

By Nick on

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Founder and co-host of Cast of Thrones. Say hello on twitter. @rbristow


Battle of the bastards


I really want to call this the greatest episode in Game of Thrones history, and for some that is completely the case. Watching this episode in basically a theater with 60 of your best friends was an experience that can’t be replicated.

We had so much pay off this week its crazy and out of character for Game of Thrones. Dany finally comes into her own and we have an amazing stand off with the slave masters. Jon and Sansa finally kill the crap out of Ramsey, whats not to love.

And then there is the production quality. And the cinematography, the best they’ve ever done. The battle is frantic and beautiful. I forgot I was watching TV. Yes, we nitpick some of the writing and poor decisions of the characters, but it was an amazing ride.

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  1. Here’s my theoretical argument for why Sansa ABSOLUTELY needed to keep the Army of the Vale from Jon: LITTLEFINGER.

    If Sansa had told Jon (and the gang) – Sansa would have been pushed to the side and her advantage over Littlefinger would be wasted. Worse yet, Jon & Davos would be making an allegiance with Littlefinger! Littlefinger would basically eat Jon for breakfast before even starting to play his daily Game of Thrones. She knew Jon would be brave, bold, and stupidly honorable. He swore to protect her that night and then the very next day was basically suicidal on the battlefield after attempting to rescue Rickon. So much for trying to protect her!

    Sansa has seen what happens to people who still fight with courage, honor, and love. She also has seen Littlefinger:
    throw his own “wife” out the friggin moondoor
    seen him betray the Lannisters who gave him everything
    plan to betray the Boltons, even as he married her off to Ramsey
    -and more

    Yes, she knows Ramsey, but she definitely knows Littlefinger.

    She also knows it’s WAY better if Littlefinger is paying off a debt to her, than for Jon to make an allegiance with Littlefinger. Plus, in Littlefinger’s scrambling to get back in her good graces, Littlefinger even revealed what weakness he would take advantage of in Jon: he’s a bastard. We all know Jon would absolutely fall for whatever manipulation Littlefinger would exert over Jon with “I know you your mother is” and from that crypt scene in Season 5 – I’m pretty sure Littlefinger knows R+L=J. Sansa was both protecting Jon from Littlefinger while risking Jon/Rickon for Winterfell in the same game move. The little bird has become a killer. Here’s hoping the Hound gets to see what has become of Sansa. That’s going to be fun.

    I actually believe that Sansa was emulating Lady Olenna: Willing to risk Jon & Rickon as innocent pawns (Sansa herself had been one in Joffrey’s murder) and keep your mouth shut until the deed is done and enemy defeated. She’s lucky that Jon survived. That is the part of Jon that Sansa doesn’t know – JON ALWAYS COMES BACK.

    Did thousands of men need to die? I guess. But Jon & Ramsey both are just as guilty of that consequence. There are show examples of commanders being tricky and smart with their attacks Tyrion, Tywin, Stannis. Sansa wouldn’t know these things but she was hoping Jon would try something. Rob Stark sacrificed 1000s of men to make the Whispering Wood attack work and capture Jamie. He knew it and felt terrible about it as well, but he had to do it. Of course, he had the men to do it and they were all his men, pledged to him. If Jon had the Vale army “pledged” to him – that would mean Littlefinger would be pledged to Jon – Sansa knows better than to that arrangement. That is how Ned got himself killed.

    Again, it’s a theoretical argument and only on Sunday will we know if she is a badass who is manipulating Littlefinger by playing off his predictability, or if Sansa is as stupid as Arya walking around Bravos with septic shock. I’m hoping it’s the former. I think Sansa will have Littlefinger by the balls and will act very much “thank god you rescued me, how can I ever repay you?” but will actually be setting him up for all that he has done to her, her family and especially because – she doesn’t even need him anymore. She has Winterfell, Jon, and the allegiance of the North. Littlefinger is worthless and wants her. And she knows that.

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