Macall B. Polay/HBO
August 27, 2017 at 11:24 PM EDT

Game of Thrones

TV Show
Drama, Fantasy
run date
Kit Harington, Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey
David Benioff, D.B. Weiss
We gave it an A

Jon knows why he’s there.

Dany knows why he’s there.

And he knows that she knows why he’s there.

We get a romantic scene that will result in plenty of freeze framing, replaying and gif-making of Jon Snow’s butt (I’m going to stick with “Jon Snow” for now; is that cool? I need time to get used to “Aegon”). How do we feel about this happening? They’re finally together! She’s his aunt! It’s so hot! He’s her nephew! They’re so awesome together! Do they have snacks for afterward?!

This has to be why the official confirmation of Jon’s father’s name was saved for the finale — to maximize our conflict. Game of Thrones has always been a heady mix of pain and pleasure, of good and evil, and here with this climactic intimacy, we get what we’ve long wanted while also feeling uneasy: a sense of pending tragedy.

Afterward, lying there, they look into each other’s eyes. This is not Drogo sex, or Daario sex, or Ygritte sex. These two are in luuuuv. We can’t imagine this will end well, just like it didn’t end well for Rhaegar and Lyanna. How could it? It can’t, right?

In another cabin, Ser Jorah sits alone, plugging his ears and crying softly (or so I imagine).

Dragonstone: Chronologically, I’m jumping around a bit, but I want to briefly discuss this scene with Jon Snow and Theon Greyjoy. Theon hasn’t had much to do this season, but tonight the producers gave Alfie Allen his absolute best scene in the show. I found myself tearing up over his desperate need to feel accepted by Jon, whose answers were so perfectly Jon Snow-like — forgiving Theon for what he can, but not pretending for one moment that his sins aren’t truly terrible. “You’re a Greyjoy and you’re a Stark,” he says, which could be foreshadowing to next season to how he processes his ancestry news — he’s a Targaryen and a Stark.

Theon tries to rally his few remaining men to support him on a mission to rescue Yara. They prefer Euron’s island tactic and want to go home. Their leader beats the hell out of Theon and tells him to stay down or he’ll kill him. Faced with the choice of backing down or facing death in the past, Theon typically chooses backing down. So he keeps fighting.

The man knees Theon in his castrated groin, and is confused when Theon isn’t wounded. This isn’t meant to be funny. If you can get past that this moment hinges on that silliest of comedic tropes — the kick in the nuts — it’s emotionally powerful. Theon breaks into a big smile for the first time in years. Because he realizes: All that was taken away from him can no longer hurt him.

Eastwatch: The Army of the Dead finally reaches The Wall. Not bad: Their march only took seven damn seasons. (I would speculate that the zombie army’s strength is tied to the coming of winter and it took winter really settling into Westeros before they could begin marching in earnest — or something along those lines.) Anyway: Tormund and Beric watch in horror as hundreds of thousands of wights gather at The Wall.

The Wall is 8,000 years old and is held together by ice, but also by magic that prevents anything dead from passing. But the builders didn’t figure on The Night King getting a zombie dragon, did they? Viserion blasts the wall with blue fire. Aww, it matches his eyes. The wights pour through the broken Wall. The Great War is on.  

Some interviews for you and thoughts:

— Can Dragonglass kill a zombie … if the zombie is a dragon?

— When you think about it, nearly all of Tyrion’s plans this season have been disastrous. But they did result in the summit meeting. The GoT producers once noted that the problem with combining certain characters at this point is there are so many you can’t put in a room together without them immediately trying to kill one another. While the plot mechanics to bring about the Dragonpit summit this season were pretty intricate, and received some criticism, the result was a terrific sequence of characters conversing that we otherwise would never have.

— The prospect of Jaime Lannister partnering with Daenerys and Jon Snow in the final season is especially exciting. It’s going be a bit awkward for Jaime to meet Bran…but then again, every meeting with Bran is now awkward.

— Fans asking on Twitter about Tormund and Beric. Are they alive? I’m 99 percent sure they are — even if just going by the “if you don’t see it, it didn’t happen” rule of TV character deaths. “Will they survive the first episode of season 8?” is the question.

— Littlefinger. This was a good time for Baelish to bow out. As much as I enjoyed his character, it felt like there wasn’t a place for him anymore — we can’t respect anybody who trusts him. We have an interview with the great Aiden Gillen about his time on the show and his final scene (link below). We have the showrunners talking about Littlefinger’s exit as well.

— Jon and Dany. I spoke a bit with Emilia Clarke and Kit Harington about the Aegon reveal (Clarke’s reaction is really funny) and how they debated their “sexual chemistry” on the set. I also have a post speculating about the seven big questions Jon’s parentage raises for the final season:

More “The Dragon and the Wolf” coverage:
— ‘Game of Thrones’ stars Emilia Clarke and Kit Harington react to that huge Jon Snow reveal
 ‘Game of Thrones’ actor on his shocking season 7 finale death
How that Jon Snow twist changes everything (and the 7 questions it raises for the final season)
Your 10 biggest finale questions answered
Our Game of Thrones finale podcast
Game of Thrones showrunners on Littlefinger’s death

And on a concluding note: A sincere thank you to every one of you who read EW’s Game of Thrones coverage this season. And thank you for your comments, shares, tweets and podcast listens too. I know some of you have been reading us from the very first season and we appreciate you continuing to return. I’m very grateful to cover such a spectacular series and will continue to post GoT updates as we enter the long hiatus until season 8. If you like, you can follow me at @jameshibberd.

Trivia question! The nickname “Littlefinger” refers to two things about Lord Baelish. What are they? Two randomly selected winners will get either a Breaker of Chains mug or a Viserion mug if they email the right answer to… 

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