TV Review: Game of Thrones S8E4 – ‘The Last of the Starks’

You have been warned: the following article contains heavy spoilers.

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Everyone grab your misplaced Starbucks coffee cups, it’s time for another review from a guy who’s only watched two series!

It’s pleasing to see that the climactic events of the last episode haven’t been brushed under the rug, as we’re granted a final farewell to the fallen in a moving sequence that also hammered home just how destructive the battle was for the Northern-Targaryen alliance. But just as there must be time to mourn, there should also be time to celebrate.

In many ways, this episode feels like a continuation of the happy ending saga that formed much of the first two episodes this series. Gendry is named Lord of the Stormlands and proposes to Arya! Sam and Gilly survived and are having a baby! Brienne and Jaime FINALLY get it on! This is all well and good, but we can never trust Game of Thrones when it comes to happy endings. Nope, Arya’s #NotAboutThatLife, Jaime’s still crushin’ on his sister, and Jon doesn’t even say a proper goodbye to Ghost. Sad times, people.

In another tense scene, Daenerys goes a little loopy and begs Jon not to tell anyone he’s secretly a Targaryen; she wants the Iron Throne, whatever it takes – hats off to Emilia Clarke, she really sells Dany’s desperation and ambition. But that secret shouldn’t be too hard to keep, Ned Stark went to the grave with it. Well apparently the Stark kids didn’t inherit his tight lips. Sansa tells Tyrion about two minutes after she swore not to tell anyone, but at the rate Dany’s going, that may not be a bad thing.

Deciding to ignore her advisors, the Mother of Dragons goes all-in on King’s Landing, and loses yet another dragon thanks to the evil-pirate-man (I have no idea who he is). These dragons have survived imprisonment, abandonment, the chill of Northern Westeros, and yet one is felled by a Jack Sparrow wannabe? Smells like lazy writing to me.

Unfortunately, the mind-numbingly poor strategic planning also results in another death for Team Dany. Problematic race issues aside, Missandei’s execution is beautifully handled by actress Nathalie Emmanuel, whose stoic final words to her Queen may come back to haunt us next week: “dracarys”. Burn, baby, burn. Judging by Dany’s reaction, fire and blood is definitely on the menu. The Mad Queen is coming, y’all.

Words by James Nash

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