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Game Of Thrones Season 6: 10 Ups And 2 Downs From 'Battle Of The Bastards'

"Do you like games, little man?"

HBO

Episode 9. It's always Episode 9 (except for last year, when it came a week early, but that was just an Episode 9 in disguise).

It's hardly worth mentioning how the penultimate episode of any given season of Game of Thrones is The Big One, but it's almost inevitable when it keeps happening, and more importantly they keep pulling it off.

The hype for this one, given its title - Battle of the Bastards - and all that comes with that, was absolutely off the charts. Jon v Ramsay: a fight for Winterfell, the North, and to the death; a battle of good vs evil, and the biggest the show has ever seen.

Those two things - the battle and the fact it's episode 9 - mean that the expectations for this instalment were almost unfairly high, and it shouldn't be a surprise that it doesn't quite match them. But it's to its credit that it does a very good job of trying.

Before we get to Winterfell, we take an unexpected detour to Meereen, getting two for the price of one in the battle stakes. Daenerys is back, the dragons are unleashed, and the storyline explodes into life. Then it's to the North, and the focus from then on is on the battle: the setup, the tactics, the fighting itself, and the aftermath.

It's the biggest episode they've attempted, and thankfully, they pull it off. Well, mostly.

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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.