There Used to be Something Called an Editor (I could use one too)
In case you missed, here is my recap of the finale:
Neither Snow nor Sand: Game of Thrones Season 7 Episode 7 "The Dragon and the Wolf" (HBO)
"The Dragon and the Wolf" includes betrayals (big and small), reunions, and legendary theories verified for once and…
Lots of people get paid to recap Game of Thrones because it is a very popular series. Some recaps are great while others are not so great (and some of us don’t get paid). However, usually, the people recapping the show at least “get” what is happening as they watch.
This morning I woke up to this article in my news feed:
Did the Hound's Poor Showmanship on Game of Thrones Just Doom Westeros?
Spoilers for Game of Thrones like you wouldn't believe. Turn back! On Sunday night's Game of Thrones, Sandor "the Hound…
Sorry Slate, that is just a brutal fail. As I tweeted after seeing it, “You know Cersei never doubted (for a second) that the White Walkers were real, right?”
Yes, I totally get you were setting up a joke, but the entire premise was false.
She brilliantly USED the White Walkers to convince all parties of her commitment to fighting a common enemy expressly so that she could change the balance of power on the ground while the enemy was being weakened (or destroyed by the White Walkers).
The whole point was that Cersei assumed from the jump that Tyrion would produce a White Walker, she knew that she would lose the war as it was currently constituted, and that a pause served HER interests. Either she would lose now (because she was outclassed) or she found a way to sue for time to reconstitute and improve her forces (Iron Bank, Gold Company).
She literally calls her brother a moron twice for not “getting” what she was doing. Her game with Tyrion was a double-game designed to convince him (while he was trying to convince her) of her sincerity (because she was ‘pregnant’).
But for some reason the premise of this entire article, written by Matthew Dessem, starts with the assumption that convincing Cersei was the key to success:
“All he <Clegane> had to do was convince Cersei Lannister that the Night King’s army of the dead was a real threat. Normally, that might have been a challenge, but Clegane also had the most unassailable proof imaginable: a decomposing but still very much undead Wight, ready to snarl at Cersei more or less on demand. It should have been an easy layup.”
Holy hell, seriously? Yes, I get the author was really trying to make a joke about the character Job from Arrested Development, but luring readers under false pretenses and starting with a weak premise don’t make for great jokes (IMHO).
Anyway, as I wrote weeks ago (in my Eastwatch recap):
“To keep it 100%, this seems like a fairly stupid plan to me. Yes, people will become terrified. But why would anyone believe that Cersei would do anything but go Donald J. Lannister and use that fear to sew up her base and to crack down on her enemies under the guise of security against the Walkers? And why does Jon seem to take no weapons featuring the Dragonglass that he has been mining on the trip to fight White Walkers? I get Gendry is good with a hammer, but White Walkers don’t give any damns about hammers. Someone might suggest that if she lets Daenerys solve the White Walker problem successfully, she will lose all credibility. Sure, that is true, but she has never been good at long-term thinking. I suspect she would just say let the White Walkers weaken the Dothraki, pretend to be responding, and then take out whatever is left of Daenerys’ troops after the battle against the Walkers.”
In other words, it has nothing to do with the Hound. If there was a problem with her plan it was WHY anyone believed Cersei would care about Wight's in the first place (not showpersonship about a Wight).
Pretty simple calculation for Cersei:
Maintain the Status Quo, and be defeated.
Buy time, and maybe weaken her enemy (perhaps catastrophically, but she seems to have forgotten, any dead will be added to the army of the dead…But, I digress).
Either way, Cersei ALWAYS saw the Wight's as an opportunity. She doesn’t care about her people, she cares about being Queen. Yes, the Walkers may come and she may be overwhelmed, but she has a navy and they can escape.
I get that Slate was trying to make a joke about Arrested Development, but the premise was weak and the claim that “Spoilers You Wouldn’t Believe” were forthcoming was absurd.
The Ongoing Guide to Game of Thrones Season 7
Everything Josh H has written about Game of Thrones Season 2017
The Dragon and the Wolf: Community of Thrones
What Issues Were Raised By Season 7 Episode 7