My Game of Thrones Review: Her name is Arya Stark

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Might as well start off with my favorite character. As soon as I found out that the name of this episode was called “No One,” I knew it was going to end with Arya vs. the Waif. However, I was not expecting the actress that Arya saved to die in such a violent way. Over the past couple of weeks, I really started to like that character and it wasn’t until I saw her bleeding out onto the floor that I finally realized it. Now, as far as the “fight” between Arya and the Waif, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed with how it ended.

Everything leading up to the final confrontation was great. I enjoyed the chase through the city and the moment Arya and the Waif shared in the room before Arya cut the candle was very intense. But, I wish we could’ve actually watched the fight between them. I understand the decision to have Arya turn off the lights, but the scene still left me wanting more.

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While I’m talking about Arya, I feel the need to talk about her character arc and what she’s been doing for the past two seasons. Since the start of season 5, Arya hasn’t had much to do. Think about it, outside of killing Meryn Trant and becoming blind, what has she done in the past 18 episodes. Throughout the first four seasons of Game of Thrones, Arya was one of the most captivating characters on this show. What made her my favorite character was not just her thirst for revenge, it was also how she didn’t let her gender define her and always rejecting that world’s social norms. And although she is still the same Arya, we haven’t gotten to see that side of her while she’s been at the house of Black & White. Thankfully, she’s finally going back home and hopefully we’ll get to see the old Arya again in season 7.

Cersei and Jaime had themselves an interesting week, to say the least. I want to give a lot of credit to Nikolaj Coster-Waldau for how he’s been portraying Jaime Lannister this season. It was already impressive how he went from villain to hero over the span of the first three seasons, but he did that exact same thing in just this episode. He had a sweet moment with Brienne as he let her keep Oathkeeper. Then, he turns right around and tells Edmure Tully that his son and his entire house were expendable if he got in the way of him being with Cersei. This episode did a fantastic job of showing what Jaime has ultimately become, while also showing what he still could be if pushed far enough.

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Everything else in this episode was more or less  filler. Tyrion telling jokes, The Hound getting revenge, and Cersei learning about the changes in her trial were all enjoyable to an extent, but overall, it wasn’t anything memorable. Speaking of Tyrion, just like Arya, I’ve been wondering why his character hasn’t been given much to do all season. Tyrion has always been a fan favorite, which is why his lack of purpose this season has been confusing and also very frustrating.

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Although the utilization (or lack thereof) of Arya and Tyrion this episode (and season) was disappointing, there was plenty of things to like about “No One” as it leads us to the penultimate episode of the season.


Also, in case you forgot….

 

Episode Score: 7.7/10


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