The Battle of the Bastards (Season 6, Episode 9)
I’m sure most of you have heard of Game of Thrones by now…The one with the swords and the dragons? The one taking over TV and making reading books cool again? Well that’s the very same one good ole Stephen Dent is going to cover today. I could go on and on about every season of GOT (there have been 6 total now) but it makes the most since to simply review the most recent season, Season 6. And to narrow it down even further, I will be talking about The Battle of the Bastards: The huge battle where Jon Snow finally gets to kill Ramsey Bolton (or does he?).
Now if you have been watching the groundbreaking TV series you know that the show makes a habit of killing people off. The whole world cheered when King Joffrey was killed (remember that sadistic little bastard who somehow became the King of Westerios?) Well for this episode we finally see Ramsey killed off (who just happens to be another sadistic little bastard…I’m seeing a trend here!) But the killing doesn’t happen as you might think it would.
The Battle of the Bastards kicks off Jon Snow vs Ramsay Bolton. Now killing Ramsay would clearly be no easy task as the man controls a much bigger army than Jon Snow’s. When the fight starts out things seem to be going well for Jon who is somehow not dying under a hail of arrows. But things quickly turn south as Snow’s whole army is surrounded by dead bodies behind them and an advancing nearly impenetrable wall of spear men. Luckily for Jon, however, Sansa hadn’t listened to him when he thought his army would be enough. She apparently and snuck away and recruited some more men and came back just in the nick of time (only on TV right!). The cavalry stomps Ramsey’s men to death and leaves him with an incredulous look on his face as he retreats back to the keep. I kept thinking as I saw this fight unfold that this may even hold its own against great movies like Braveheart, which was the last time I saw such a great medieval fight with plenty of blood and gore. The funny thing that GOT isn’t a movie, it’s a TV show! For a TV show episode to rival Braveheart or even to stand close is quite a remarkable feat.
Next, their lone troll succeeds on breaking the gate of Winterfell and somehow, someway we see Jon facing off against his arch rival. After fighting off Ramsey’s arrows with his shield and ever advancing, Jon beats him to a pulp but shows remarkable restraint in not killing the man. Sansa gets the last laugh as she allows Bolton’s savage dogs to do her dirty work; the same dogs whom Ramsay used to kill so many of his enemies. Justice is finally served – that’s what makes this episode so satisfying. I think everyone watching who has following his season cheered when Ramsay got ripped apart. That’s the making of good entertainment – something that draws you in and makes you root for the good guys – and really despise the bad guys.