Without question, episode 5 of the final season of Game of Thrones severely divided viewers. Fans of the show fell into two categories: they either loved episode 5 or absolutely hated it. So, let’s take a look at the “The Bells” in-depth. Here are the highest and lowest points of the episode, and what we should expect from the season’s finale.
Fair warning: if you haven’t seen episode 5, “The Bells,” turn back now. There will be spoilers below!
Season 8, Episode 5: Worst Game of Thrones Episode?
After “The Bells,” fans erupted into war online. Game of Thrones is famous for its complicated plot line, twists, and backstabbing between the characters. However, in the next-to-last episode of the series, they blew it all up, quite literally.
Some called it the worst episode in the history of Game of Thrones, saying it seems like the creators are frantically fumbling to tie all loose ends together before the show ends. Some even said that its clear the writers tried to cover up lazy writing with shocking twists and violence. However, some fans thoroughly enjoyed “The Bells.” They said the episode portrayed realistic character choices. Meanwhile, other fans didn’t like the character choices but pointed to previous episodes setting up this one. Let’s take a look at what fans did and didn’t like in “The Bells.”
The Best And Worst Points In “The Bells”
For many, the episode started going downhill when Arya had a sudden change of heart. After six seasons of plotting and hunting, Arya finds herself just feet away from Queen Cersei. However, instead of seizing the opportunity, Arya just turns around and “chooses life over death,” just like her pal the Hound advised her. Meanwhile, fans had to ask: is this really the end of her Game of Thrones arc?
Speaking of the Hound – the Cleganebowl, or the Hound and the Mountain’s last battle was fun and bizarre at the same time. While the scenes had plenty of action, it did have a few unintentionally funny moments – like when the Hound yelled: “****ing DIE!” Many felt sad to see the Hound go, but almost everyone agreed that the creators treated him well. Unfortunately, it became the only thing fans could agree on.
However, the most decisive came with Daenerys Targaryen‘s complete character transformation. Even though Daenerys is tough and stubborn, she never killed innocents. Suddenly, in episode 5, she destroys King’s Landing despite Cersei’s surrender. Daenerys’ character had been built for seven seasons as an aspiring queen who wants to wipe evil forces off the earth – and all at once, she becomes what she resents most. However, others said it the turn was obvious. They argue that her turning into the Mad Queen – just like her father, the Mad King – has been long foreshadowed.
Finally, Sansa and Brienne are noticeably absent in this episode. Some are concerned that we might not even see them in the show’s finale. Let’s face it, showrunners David Benioff and D. B. Weiss have really not done enough with Sansa. Especially after setting her up as a cunning politician!
Who Lived, Who Died, And Where Do We Go From Here?
As with any second-to-last Game of Thrones episodes, plenty of people died. However, not everyone loved the deaths. Almost everyone agreed that Cersei and Jamie’s deaths felt massively underwhelming. Evil Cersei, who ended up on many’s kill lists, and Jamie, one of the key players in the saga, died buried by rubble. While some found some solace in the fact that they died together, many felt such a death treated the characters poorly.
Another death ended up potentially, unintentionally became the saddest: Varys. For lots of viewers, Dany’s sentencing of Varys, along with the burning down of King’s Landing, confirmed her descent into madness. However, others are not convinced. A detail you may have missed at the beginning of the episode: Varys was trying to poison Dany. So, she may at least have had a reason for killing him. You can also find a complete list of who else died, here.
We’ll end with the preview for episode 6, the final episode of Game of Thrones. Obviously, it doesn’t tell us much. However, for most fans, it’s either a horrible breakup or the light at the end of the tunnel. Season 8 has been a lot like episode 5 in general: you either love it or you hate it.
P.S. If you were one of the fans that hated episode 5 of Game of Thrones, why not check out our list of the best episodes ever? They’re sure to help ease the pain!