Game Of Thrones Season 8: 7 Ups And 3 Downs From 'The Bells'

6. The Quiet Build-Up To War

Game of Thrones Tyrion Jaime
HBO

This episode will be remembered, understandably and probably correctly, for what happens at King's Landing. But that's underscored by the smaller character work we get in the first half-hour or so, which serves as a nice counterbalance to the scale and bombast.

It's much quieter in the early goings, as we get all of the build-up to the war to come. Varys' sudden death (which, arguably, is a little *too* sudden, but needs to happen for the story) serves as a warning of where things could go. So too does the fireside scene between Jon and Daenerys, where she realises fear is all she has.

Best of all, though, is the scene between Jaime and Tyrion. Wonderfully acted by Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and Peter Dinklage, it's a moving capstone on their entire relationship on the show, and it's hard not to feel something as they embrace and Tyrion tells his brother that he was the only one who never saw him as a monster. It's the kind of 'conversations in dark rooms' work that Thrones is so, so good at, and with two characters and actors this great, it comes off as a quiet highlight in a very loud episode.

Contributor
Contributor

NCTJ-qualified journalist. Most definitely not a racing driver. Drink too much tea; eat too much peanut butter; watch too much TV. Sadly only the latter paying off so far. A mix of wise-old man in a young man's body with a child-like wonder about him and a great otherworldly sensibility.