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The real winner from the series finale of 'Game of Thrones'

Neal Justin, Star Tribune (Minneapolis) on

Published in Entertainment News

This review is full of spoilers.

And the winner of "Game of Thrones" was ... Drogon.

I'm not talking about who became King of the Seven -- er, Six -- Kingdoms. That title went to Bran the Broken, elected by the Small Council in a compromise vote Sunday during the series finale of "Game of Thrones."

But the episode's most memorable scene starred the dragon who swept into an open courtyard after his commander, Daenerys Targaryen, had been stabbed to death by Jon Snow in the ultimate act of sacrifice.

For a moment, you thought the creature was about to burn Snow to a crisp. Instead, he belched fire towards the throne, melting it to the ground, then scooped up the dead Queen and flew away.

In that moment, Drogon showed more emotion and more depth than any other character in the show's last episode, which says a lot about the brilliance of the special-effects team and the less-than-spectacular contributions of the cast's flesh-and-blood actors who spent much of the past eight seasons doing little more than finding new ways to look constipated.

The only human that came close to landing the same impact was Peter Dinklage, so it's no surprise that writers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss gave him so much of the spotlight in the final 90 minutes. As Tyrion Lannister, Dinklage delivered so many monologues he could have been training for a one-man show on Broadway.

"Love is more powerful than reason," he preached in one of the many sermons that are bound to earn him his fourth Emmy.

 

Dinklage was also at the heart of some unexpected humor in the final minutes, a tone that, along with a plant popping up in the middle of a snowfield, signaled a happy ending, or the closest the bloody series was ever going to come to one.

"Game of Thrones" qualifies as a masterpiece, but only because of its ambitious scope and technical wizardry. With the exception of HBO's "Rome," no other series has used every cent of its mega-million dollar budget so wisely.

But as a drama, the show never really rose above the level of a marathon session of Dungeons & Dragons. Oh, I know there was an overall theme -- power leads to corruption -- but I didn't need 73 episodes of incest, Red Weddings, beheadings and zombie armies to learn that.

Drogon did it all in one breath.

(c)2019 Star Tribune (Minneapolis)

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