If you, like millions of other people on the internet, had a problem with the way Game of Thrones wrapped up on Sunday, I highly recommend watching it on three hours of sleep while jet-lagged in the airport of a foreign country. It is only there, temporarily suspended in the twilight of human consciousness, surrounded by people speaking Danish, that things begin to make a sort of nebulous sense. Making one protagonist they spent eight seasons forcing us to care about brutally murder the other protagonist they spent eight seasons convincing us to care about in cold blood out of absolutely nowhere? Makes sense! Tyrion convincing Jon Snow to pull off this murder via exactly one (1) four-minute conversation? Yes, sure. I love it. Jon Snow having his hair gel in prison? Sure. Arya becoming a proud colonizer? This tracks!
Since I didn’t get to write about last week’s episode (I was covering the Cannes Film Festival), I will weigh in briefly to say LOL. And now let’s move on. The finale begins with Jon, Davos, and Tyrion trudging through the snow and ash in King’s Landing, doing a little tour of the destruction. A man walks past Tyrion, burned to a crisp except for his underwear, which points to Dany’s great generosity. Grey Worm is randomly executing Lannister soldiers as a way to externalize his heartbreak. Jon and Davos ask him not to, and he’s like, “Absolutely not. I will leave this show only after I have totally destroyed the good will toward my character. You should think about doing the same.” He slits a throat.
Tyrion is searching the burnt husk of the castle for his dead incest twin siblings. He finds them beneath a pile of rocks and sobs, throwing bricks around (disrespectful, considering). I get why he’s sad for Jaime, with whom he spent a lot of time briefly showing emotion in front of a fire, but there is zero textual evidence to support his sadness for Cersei.
Jon Snow is not ready for the final Rose Ceremony. He hasn’t decided whether he’s going to choose Dany or choose nobody (because she is the only contestant this season). His turmoil is clear in his desperate face and his frizzy hair, which he has unforgivably neglected. Grey Worm waits for him at the top of the castle stairs, despite the fact that he was just murdering people indiscriminately in a different location 12 seconds ago. Dany’s Large Adult Dragon son flies overhead, briefly swooping down to give Jon a wedgie. Dany walks to the front of the castle steps, wearing all black and dramatic shoulder pads to indicate she is Now Bad. She clears her throat. “This is the final Rose Ceremony,” she screams. “It is the time to ask yourself, once and for all, are you here for the right reasons?”
Jon looks confused. “Where’s Chris Harrison?” he asks, tugging nervously on his wedgie. Dany laughs, furls of black smoke escaping from her mouth. “I swallowed him,” she says. “He is now speaking out of me.”
Tyrion approaches Dany to ask if she believes her abrupt left turn into a murderously insane character has felt believable to her, or if she, too, thinks Amanda Peet’s husband spent too much time giving himself fun little cameos and writing scenes with men briefly showing each other emotion in front of fires and not enough time figuring out how to write women. “How dare you question me, Amanda Peet’s husband, and Chris Harrison, who lives inside my mouth?!” she shrieks. “This is the highest-rated reality-television series in the world. We are changing minds. We are changing lives. Perhaps we’ve had to kill millions along the way, but what are millions of dead people when you’ve got a shot at true love?” She banishes Tyrion to prison. Jon Snow gulps audibly like a cartoon character to indicate he is Experiencing Some Moral Confusion.
Arya and Jon are having an argument in front of all of the soldiers. Arya is like, “Dany is never going to let you live unless you agree to a lifelong Fuck Plot.” Jon gulps again and tugs his collar, looking straight at the camera. “What if I’m not ready for a proposal?” he asks Arya. “It’s only been a few weeks. I hate this process. How do I know if I’ve met the one?”
Arya laughs. “The process works,” she says, patting Jon on the shoulder. Jon shudders involuntarily. “Did Chris tell you to say that?” he says. Arya winks and walks away.
Terrified that everyone in his life is actually a producer for The Bachelor, Jon visits Tyrion in prison. “Should I marry Dany?” asks Jon. “We’ve had a complicated six weeks. I love her, but she’s my aunt, and her sons terrify me. She’s also been acting kind of weird this week, burning down cities, but please don’t judge her — it’s been a rough transition. Oh, and she ate Chris Harrison. Actually, I appreciate that part. But the show has no host anymore. So I’m not really sure who’s hosting the final Rose Ceremony? Anyway.”
“Actually, you should murder her,” says Tyrion.
“Uh, what?” says Jon. “Truly what? I don’t even … what?!”
“You should kill her because we only have 40 minutes left in this episode and we absolutely must wrap this up in a way that is totally fucking out of control and random,” says Tyrion.
“Well, when you put it that way,” says Jon. “10-4.”
One of Dany’s sons is hiding underneath a pile of snow and pops up just as Jon walks past, screaming “Boo!!!” and pulling down Jon’s pants. Jon starts weeping uncontrollably. “Shit, dude,” says Dany’s son. “Chill.” Upstairs, Dany approaches the Iron Throne, where she herself will hold the final Rose Ceremony. She strokes it longingly, imagining what it will be like to peg Jon Snow atop it.
Jon walks up behind her. “Isn’t this sword chair hot?” asks Dany. “I’ve been aroused by it since I was a child.” She wiggles her eyebrows suggestively.
Jon gulps again. “Uh, Dany, listen,” he says, twiddling his thumbs. “You burned some kids to death. I don’t know how to feel about that, exactly.”
Chris Harrison speaks from Dany’s mouth. “It’s all part of the process, Jon!!!” he screams, his voice desperate and echoey, trapped inside a dark tunnel. Dany swallows hard and Chris is silenced.
Dany looks at Jon. “It’s not easy to be a woman on this show, you know,” she says. “The producers made me get naked in episode ONE. My brother touched my BOOB. I was raped multiple times and then I had to fall in love with my rapist. I had to get naked again inside a FIRE. Little girls around the world told me I was their hero, which means little girls watched me do all that shit. I had to do half of my scenes on a green screen, pretending my sons were phallic mythical creatures. My best friend, one of the only women of color on the show, got beheaded just so I’d have a good reason to go nuts. I never got any fireside chatting scenes. And now I have to act like Stalin for no reason.”
Jon nods sympathetically. “That all sounds really hard. Dany, will you accept this final rose?”
Dany is delighted. “I’ve been waiting so long to hear you say that,” she says, weeping. “Does this mean we’re engaged?”
Jon murders her. “No, sorry,” he says. “I’m not ready for a proposal.”