Should Amazon’s “The Lord Of The Rings” Have Hobbits?

Amazon Prime Studios has gone to great lengths to prevent any and all secrets from the set of The Lord Of The Rings from slipping out, and the little marketing they’ve done for the epic fantasy series thus far has been vague and at times misleading. So I have a hard time believing that Sir Lenny Henry, one of the series’ most prestigious stars, was supposed to disclose any information about his role in a recent interview with BBC Radio 4, much less the fact that he’s playing a hobbit.

The Lord Of The Rings
Hobbits | theporteport.com

As you can imagine, the news spread rapidly throughout Tolkien fan-circles. This is the first official confirmation of TheOneRing.net’s exclusive reporting from July that hobbits would be featured in Amazon’s The Lord Of The Rings, and that Henry would be playing one. If Amazon’s series were a straightforward adaptation of The Lord Of The Rings, it would go without saying that hobbits should be present…but it’s not, and that’s why this reveal is causing something of a stir on social media.

Amazon’s The Lord Of The Rings takes place between six-thousand to three-thousand years before The Lord Of The Rings trilogy, during the legendary Second Age of Middle-earth. I’ve written extensively about the Second Age in a series of posts detailing the ancient history of the Elven kingdoms of Lindon and Eregion, the Dwarven mansions of Khazad-dûm, and the Mannish empire of Númenor – but as you’ll find if you look back through those posts, I make no mention of hobbits. And that’s because the diminutive heroes of J.R.R. Tolkien’s books only make their first appearance in the canonical timeline a thousand years after the end of the Second Age.

In the prologue to The Fellowship Of The Ring, Tolkien is intentionally but tantalizingly vague about hobbit prehistory, giving us armchair anthropologists – and the writers for Amazon’s The Lord Of The Rings – extremely little to go on:

“Their earliest tales seem to glimpse a time when they dwelt in the upper vales of Anduin, between the eaves of Greenwood the Great and the Misty Mountains. Why they later undertook the hard and perilous crossing of the mountains into Eriador is no longer certain. Their own accounts speak of the multiplying of Men in the land, and of a shadow that fell on the forest, so that it became darkened and its new name was Mirkwood.”

Thanks to The Tale Of Years in the appendices to The Return Of The King, we can be certain that this “shadow” was in fact the malicious spirit of Sauron, which first settled in Greenwood around Third Age (T.A.) 1050. At this point, hobbits began to migrate steadily westward, and it wasn’t until T.A. 1601 that they crossed the Brandywine River and settled down in what later became known as the Shire. That’s when the hobbits finally began keeping written records of their history, much too late to be very helpful for those of us trying to look back into their distant past.

Even so, it seems clear that hobbits did exist in some form or another during the Second Age. They must have lived in the Anduin river-valley for some time, long enough at least to have become divided into three distinctly separate groups, Harfoots, Stoors, and Fallohides, who crossed the Misty Mountains at intervals between roughly T.A. 1050 and T.A. 1150. Sir Lenny Henry very specifically pointed out that he would be playing a Harfoot hobbit – which is quite interesting, given that Harfoots were the first hobbits to migrate westward. Still nowhere near as early as Amazon’s The Lord Of The Rings is set, but earlier than the Stoors and Fallohides.

Little else is known about these prehistoric Harfoots, except that like all hobbits they originally lived in holes in the ground (a custom which predated the tradition of building large and elaborate hobbit-holes in the Shire), and that they “had much to do with Dwarves in ancient times”. In contrast, the Stoors were “less shy of Men” than other hobbits, and the Fallohides “were more friendly with Elves”. Details such as these could be played up in the series: a Harfoot hobbit being invited into the Dwarven kingdom of Khazad-dûm at the height of its glory would be a moving parallel to Samwise Gamgee’s awe and wonder at that same kingdom’s ruins in The Lord Of The Rings.

But the presence of hobbits in Amazon’s series introduces a couple of complications that definitely can’t be ignored (although there are workarounds). For one thing, there’s a very good narrative and thematic reason for why hobbits don’t start popping up in the legends of Middle-earth until nearer the end of the Third Age. With the exception of people like Gandalf, almost nobody is supposed to know about them.

The Lord Of The Rings
Sir Lenny Henry | eurogamer.net

In The Hobbit, Thorin’s plan to reclaim Erebor only succeeds because the dragon Smaug is unfamiliar with the scent of hobbits. And the entire plot of The Lord Of The Rings hinges on the fact that the dark lord Sauron does not, must not, be aware of hobbits. For they’ve given him no reason to notice them: they’re a small and seemingly harmless people tucked away in a quiet corner of the world, minding their own business and generally not being a bother to anybody. Sauron, seeing only the mighty kingdoms of Men and Elves as his true threats, overlooks the hobbits – allowing them to slip through the cracks in his defenses, undermine his strategies, and eventually defeat him.

So the glaring problem with hobbits in Amazon’s The Lord Of The Rings is that they really can’t do anything of note, certainly nothing that would put them on Sauron’s radar, unless it’s handled very delicately – in the same way that The Clone Wars had to find increasingly complex ways to avoid having Anakin Skywalker and General Grievous ever meet so as to maintain continuity with a single line of dialogue in Revenge Of The Sith.

Thematically, it would also be hard to justify a whole bunch of hobbits going on epic quests to save Middle-earth thousands of years before Bilbo and Frodo’s time. In the prologue to Fellowship, Tolkien does mention that “In olden days they had, of course, been often obliged to fight to maintain themselves in a hard world”, which could provide Amazon’s writing team with an excuse to write about hobbit wars, but the reason hobbits are the heroes of Tolkien’s works is because they’re a peace-loving people put to the test by extraordinary circumstances, not that they were all secretly warriors once upon a time.

If hobbits are a major part of Amazon’s The Lord Of The Rings, then I hope their storyline is more of a survival-genre adventure detailing their trek across the Misty Mountains and Eriador, with their arrival in the Shire moved forward a thousand years or so into the Second Age to give their subplot a clear and satisfying endpoint – preferably marked by the long-expected return of Howard Shore’s Shire theme. Canonically, it’s King Argeleb II of Arnor who grants the hobbits permission to settle there, but it could just as easily be Elendil or Isildur, Aragorn’s distant ancestors.

Would it be fanservice? A little. But that doesn’t have to be a bad thing, and it’s nothing compared to the idea that came to me as I was writing my notes for this post that involves the hobbits helping another enigmatic nature-loving race of people, the Entwives, escape the destruction of their gardens by Sauron and finding a new home for them in the Shire – where Samwise Gamgee’s cousin would one day see a giant elm tree walking across the north moors. Now that’s fanservice, and to be honest I’m not totally opposed to it, either.

Anyway, Amazon obviously has their reasons for including hobbits in The Lord Of The Rings, and I’m sure it has something to do with the fact that hobbits are arguably J.R.R. Tolkien’s most iconic characters, and their absence in his tales of the First and Second Ages is often cited as the main reason why those tales are less widely-known and universally-beloved. But there is some sense in that reasoning. Amidst all the wizards and warriors of Middle-earth, it’s the firmly grounded hobbits whose humility, empathy, and love of nature keeps Tolkien’s epic tales from ever straying into the glorification of war and violence that so much fantasy espouses.

That’s why I don’t necessarily have a problem with hobbits in Amazon’s The Lord Of The Rings. If they have a purpose in the story beyond being instantly recognizable to general audiences, one that doesn’t introduce too many plot-holes but instead uses the hobbits to counterbalance the stories of heroes like Galadriel, Elrond, and Gil-galad, then their inclusion could be quite effective. Ending the series with them finally reaching the Shire after several seasons of hardship, providing a hopeful and optimistic end to Amazon’s story that would offset the tragedies of the Second Age while segueing beautifully into the stories we know, would be very much in the spirit of Tolkien.

The Lord Of The Rings
Hobbiton | yourmoneygeek.com

And before I end this, I have to address one other thing about Henry’s remarks that isn’t and shouldn’t be a problem – though of course it’s being made into one by bigots. According to Henry, Amazon’s Harfoot hobbits will be a multicultural group including Black actors like Henry himself and Maori actors from New Zealand (making it all the more confusing why Amazon would shift production to the United Kingdom for season two). I’d have supported this casting decision regardless of whether or not Harfoot hobbits were canonically described as being “browner of skin” than other hobbits (which they are, by the way).

So what hobbit-centric storylines would you like to see in The Lord Of The Rings, and how big a role do you think they’ll play in the series? Share your own thoughts, theories, and opinions, in the comments below!

Agatha Harkness Is Getting A Series? Say No More, I’m Sold

What would any good sitcom be without a spin-off series or two? I Love Lucy had The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, The Mary Tyler Moore Show had Lou Grant, Rhoda, and Phyllis, Full House had Fuller House, Roseanne has The Conners, and so on. It’s only right that Marvel’s WandaVision, a quirky twist on classic sitcoms with macabre undertones, should live on through a spin-off focused on a fan-favorite supporting character, seeing as everybody behind-the-scenes seems pretty adamant that the original series won’t and was never planned to get a second season.

Agatha Harkness
Agatha Harkness | people.com

And it would be hard to name a WandaVision character more deserving of their own spin-off series than “Agnes”, a.k.a. immortal evil sorceress Agatha Harkness. Wanda herself is already going to be a major part of Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness, and it’s high time she got her own movie anyway; White Vision might return in Armor Wars, and he’s frankly not interesting enough to carry his own series; Monica Rambeau will co-star in The Marvels and she’ll probably be in Secret Invasion. But until today, Marvel’s future plans for Agatha Harkness were rather unclear.

Now, Variety and other Hollywood trades are reporting that Kathryn Hahn will return to reprise the role in a Disney+ series. WandaVision head writer Jac Schaeffer will write and executive produce the series, which is being tentatively described as a “dark comedy” – befitting of Hahn’s high camp performance, and the character’s flair for extravagance. What’s more, Hahn has finalized a deal to appear in other MCU movies and series’ as Agatha Harkness. Although there’s no word on where and when exactly that would happen, the decision to give her a spin-off series suggests that Agatha will play a pivotal role going forward.

The main question on everyone’s minds is whether the spin-off will be set before or after the events of WandaVision. A historical prequel could help fill in the gaps in our knowledge regarding Agatha Harkness’ long and presumably eventful backstory, and would be a perfect opportunity to introduce more characters from the mystic side of Marvel Comics. The one flashback to Agatha’s dark past in WandaVision could be the show’s starting-point – on the run from Salem in 1693 after massacring her entire coven of witches in her quest to accumulate more power, we could see her form the community of New Salem in modern-day Colorado as a haven for other maverick sorcerers like her.

Alternatively, the series could take place after WandaVision. Agatha Harkness failed in her attempt to steal Wanda’s chaos magic, and Wanda trapped her in Westview, laying a curse on her so that Agatha alone of all the town’s residents is still stuck in a sitcom-inspired fantasy, being remotely brainwashed by Wanda to think and act like the 1950’s-era comedic relief character she first pretended to be. That being said, we know that the curse isn’t foolproof – Vision realized that he was living in a simulation, and a witch of Agatha’s power and prestige shouldn’t take too long to figure it out either.

Agatha Harkness
Agatha vs her coven, concept art by Gaetan Borneuf | polygon.com

Personally, I think it will be a bit of both. Trapped in Westview all by herself (Agatha All Alone?) but painfully self-aware, Agatha will have plenty of time to reminisce on better days, allowing us to transition seamlessly into flashbacks before the series becomes too much like a rip-off of WandaVision‘s unique premise. By the end of the series, something – or someone – from her past will pop up in Westview, giving Agatha the means to escape. What happens then is anyone’s guess, but personally I think the sorceress would make a great fit with whatever team of Dark Avengers or Thunderbolts is being assembled by Contessa Valentina Allegra de Fontaine, as the evil version of Scarlet Witch that Agatha so desperately wants to be.

There’s also a Fantastic Four connection in Agatha Harkness’ comics history that can’t be ignored, given that the superhero team will be entering the MCU soon(ish). Agatha was employed by Reed Richards and Sue Storm to be a nanny for their son Franklin, a decision which went about as well as you’d expect. Long story short, the Fantastic Four persuade her to help them out on multiple occasions, usually when Franklin’s reality-warping powers are involved. She never stops being an antihero, but her desire to meld Franklin into a more powerful hero gives her an accidental emotional conflict that could be very interesting onscreen.

And of course, the Fantastic Four are still in Agatha’s near-but-not-quite-near-enough-to-worry-about-yet future. For the moment, she’s still bad to the bone, and that’s the Agatha Harkness we all want to see front and center in her spin-off series. Leaving aside Loki, because Loki has always been more of a trickster and a con-man than a straight-up villain, Agatha will be the first Marvel villain to star in a solo property, and I hope she’s not instantly redeemed because Disney needs her to be a lead now.

Agatha Harkness
Agatha Harkness | pinterest.com

Before I finish, there’s one more thing we need to talk about – Mephisto. Now I know that all our theories about him were disproven in the WandaVision finale, but that’s because ultimately Mephisto had no place in Wanda’s story, and that made sense. An Agatha show, on the other hand, ought to have plenty of space to organically introduce the character without overshadowing anyone else, and with a really good veteran comedic actor in the role he’d be an excellent foil for Kathryn Hahn’s wicked sass and dark humor.

So what’s your reaction to this news, and which characters and actors do you want to fill out the cast alongside Hahn? Share your own thoughts, theories, and opinions, in the comments below!

“What If…?” Episode 9 – A Hollow And Hectic Finale

SPOILERS FOR WHAT IF…? AHEAD!

Marvel Studios has churned out three live-action series’ for Disney+ this year, and it didn’t take them long to match or frequently surpass the quality of many of their movies. What If…?, on the other hand, has had scattered moments and two full episodes that I’d rank right up there alongside the best of WandaVision, The Falcon And The Winter Soldier, and Loki, but if this series is going to be a multi-season commitment for Marvel’s fledgling animation department (and it’s intended to be), then it’s going to need a little more work.

What If...?
Guardians Of The Multiverse | mcutimes.com

Leaving aside the fact that some episodes could be better described as mashups of two or more Marvel movies than actual “what if…?” scenarios, or the occasionally awkward facial animations and voice acting, What If…?‘s most consistent issue is that almost every episode is trying to squeeze an entire movie’s worth of plot and character development into the span of about twenty-five minutes, a good amount of which is often credits. This problem doesn’t necessarily have to be solved by making every episode forty to fifty minutes long, either. More focused writing would do wonders for What If…?.

For instance, this season finale didn’t need to be almost entirely an action sequence pitting the newly-formed “Guardians of the Multiverse” against Ultron (voiced by Ross Marquand), for several reasons. Firstly and probably most importantly, because it’s largely pointless. The Watcher (voiced by Jeffrey Wright)’s plan to defeat Ultron doesn’t actually rely on fighting him for a prolonged period of time, so this sequence feels like a waste of screentime that could have been better spent formulating a more efficient plan; perhaps one that would have given The Watcher something to do in this episode after how active he was last week.

And the longer this pointless sequence drags on, the more it robs Ultron of all the fear and awe he commanded in last week’s episode. Wielding all six Infinity Stones and possessed of reflexes and mental capacities beyond human comprehension, Ultron was capable of devouring entire galaxies last week – the only opponent who should logically stand a chance against him in battle for very long, out of this line-up at least, is Doctor Strange Supreme (Benedict Cumberbatch). I love seeing underdog characters use their unique skills to bring down an enemy twice their size, like when Star-Lord (Chadwick Boseman) gracefully snatches an Infinity Stone from Ultron’s collection using his “sticky fingers” technique, but Ultron is already depowered even before that, and it makes the whole battle less interesting.

The stakes are also surprisingly low for a series that’s so far been almost sadistic when it comes to killing off our favorite characters. For a moment, I hoped that Party Thor (Chris Hemsworth) at least would get to go out in a blaze of glory, after having served his only real purpose – unwitting bait for Ultron. But in fact, nobody dies. Technically not even Ultron, although it’s hard to describe what really happens to him: his body, or rather Vision’s body, gets taken over by the mind of Arnim Zola (Toby Jones), and his armor gets transferred to Erik Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan), who wants to use it to conquer the universe with the Infinity Stones, and both of them get locked up in a pocket dimension for all eternity, fighting over the Stones.

What If...?
Gamora | looper.com

The Killmonger twist is one of many plot beats and character moments in this episode that required more time to develop organically. The entire build-up to Killmonger’s betrayal is one or two shots of him silently staring at an Ultron droid’s helmet. Similarly, Captain Carter (Hayley Atwell) sees one photo of Steve Rogers and suddenly wants to leave her timeline to go back and live with him. She ultimately decides against it, which I’m choosing to interpret as a jab at Steve’s out-of-character ending in Avengers: Endgame, but the whole scene feels too rushed to make this conflict or its resolution particularly interesting.

This feeling that we’re racing against the clock is compounded by another problem: none of the Guardians of the Multiverse actually know each other prior to this episode, and we don’t know them all that well – heck, this is our first time even meeting Gamora (voiced by Cynthia McWilliams), Destroyer of Thanos, because for some reason her individual episode got moved to season two – so they’re building relationships entirely from scratch, and without even so much as a common understanding of the universe to unite them.

The episode could have played on the radical differences between them to build bonds or create rifts and divisions, but this is an idea we only see realized through Captain Carter’s relationships with the two Black Widows (both voiced by Lake Bell). In her own timeline, their flirty banter is identical to that of Steve Rogers and Black Widow – which would be a lot more surprising and refreshing if it didn’t feel like What If…?‘s Captain Carter is literally just a reskin of Captain America. When she meets the haggard Black Widow of last week’s episode, she tells her things about herself that this timeline’s Widow wouldn’t have told a soul, proving her trustworthiness and unintentionally revealing that she and Widow are closer than Steve and Widow.

But that’s it. Other interactions, which could have been just as emotional if not more so, are ignored completely. Killmonger seeing T’Challa alive after murdering him in episode six should have been a humbling moment for him. Gamora talking about killing her timeline’s Thanos could have caused a clash with T’Challa, who successfully persuaded his timeline’s Thanos to see the error of his ways. And although zombie Wanda Maximoff shows up to fight Ultron and seems briefly confused by something, it would have been nice – and even more heartbreaking – to have explicit confirmation that she recognized her beloved Vision’s face on the android’s body.

Nonetheless, What If…? aims for an unearned heartfelt tone in its final minutes, as the Guardians go their separate ways. Obviously, the two endings that most fans will be talking about for weeks to come are Captain Carter’s and Doctor Strange Supreme’s: in a mid-credits scene, the former discovers the derelict HYDRA Stomper suit from episode one and is informed that someone is inside, setting up a Winter Soldier-type storyline for season two, while the latter is put in charge of protecting the pocket dimension where Zola and Killmonger are being kept, establishing him as The Watcher’s right-hand man and a being of infinitely more power than he could ever have obtained on his own. But neither ending really moved me.

What If...?
Gamora and T’Challa | butwhythopodcast.com

What did tug at my heartstrings was Black Widow being given a second chance by The Watcher, being dropped into the timeline that lost its Black Widow back in episode three, and helping Captain America and Captain Marvel take down Loki (Tom Hiddleston), even though I thought somebody ought to have warned her that Hawkeye, Thor, and Bruce Banner had also died in that timeline. What did break my heart was seeing T’Challa fly off to save the galaxy once again, this time with Peter Quill (voiced by Brian T. Delaney) by his side, and knowing now that Marvel wanted to give the character his own spin-off series.

These characters, even their alternate versions, are what we fall in love with, they’re why we watch, and my only hope for season two of What If…? is that Marvel gives them the space and time to really shine.

Episode Rating: 6.5/10

“House Of The Dragon” 1st Look Features No Dragons, Oddly

You know what they say about Game Of Thrones spin-offs, don’t you? Every time a new one gets announced, the gods toss a coin in the air, and the world holds its breath to see how it will land. Some have filmed entire pilot episodes before being abruptly canceled, some haven’t made it nearly that far, but so far prequel series House Of The Dragon is the only one that we can be (relatively) certain will actually hit HBO sometime next year.

House Of The Dragon
Rhaenyra Targaryen before the Iron Throne | cnet.com

As for whether it will be any good, the other big question that must necessarily be asked of any Game Of Thrones property following the long-running original series’ disastrous final season, that’s much more unclear. The first photos from House Of The Dragon weren’t particularly revealing, but failed to inspire much confidence in the series’ costume, hair, and makeup departments. Today, HBO unveiled a brief teaser trailer that still features its fair share of awkward wigs and lackluster outfits, but at least promises more of the political intrigue and intricate royal court drama that made Game Of Thrones such a phenomenon in the first place…before the writers ran out of George R.R. Martin books to adapt, and abandoned realism for bland high fantasy.

Fortunately for everyone involved, the source material for House Of The Dragon is a finished work, one that doesn’t require the writers to clumsily invent their own ending for the series from scratch. Based on Martin’s book Fire & Blood, House Of The Dragon tells the story of the war that tore the Targaryen family apart from the inside roughly two-hundred years before the events of Game Of Thrones. But while a lot changes in that time, even more stays the same: because just like Game Of Thrones, House Of The Dragon features deeply flawed and morally-conflicted characters fighting for power – only this time, basically everybody has a dragon.

Now, I’ve never read Fire & Blood, but I am a history buff, so it didn’t take me long before I started really vibing with the source material as I researched the history of the Targaryen family, the lead-up to the Dance of the Dragons, and the central power-struggle between Rhaenyra Targaryen, Daemon Targaryen, Alicent Hightower, and Aegon Targaryen II. It’s all really good stuff, and House Of The Dragon is going to have multiple seasons to give this story and these characters the justice they deserve. Based on this trailer, season one is very much going to be a “prelude to war”, fleshing out all of the characters and their relationships before pitting them against each other.

The teaser trailer provides very quick glimpses of important characters and events, accompanied by some (in my opinion, rather poorly-edited) narration from Matt Smith’s Daemon Targaryen, the younger brother of Westeros’ current Targaryen king, Viserys I. With Viserys nearing the end of his life, the question of who will succeed him weighs heavily on the minds of everyone at court, particularly Viserys’ adult daughter Princess Rhaenyra, and Rhaenyra’s stepmother Queen Alicent Hightower. Two political factions emerge, one recognizing the legitimacy of Rhaenyra’s claim to the throne and the other seeing Alicent’s young son with Viserys, Aegon II, as the better (i.e. male) option.

House Of The Dragon
House Targaryen | geektyrant.com

My hope is that these characters will all have clear and well-defined motivations for wanting the Iron Throne, but I do worry that House Of The Dragon will try too hard to justify Daenerys Targaryen’s “mad queen” turn in the final season of Game Of Thrones by retroactively doubling down on the idea that latent sociopathy runs in the Targaryen bloodline and can pop up whenever the writers need to cut a character’s arc abruptly short – a lazy excuse for a horribly-executed plot twist that I’d rather see retconned entirely than expanded upon; especially since House Of The Dragon is focused on another ambitious woman soon to be vilified for her actions.

House Of The Dragon is very clearly trying to establish visual and thematic parallels between the stories of Daenerys and Rhaenyra – the latter’s slow yet confident march toward the Iron Throne echoes Daenerys’ climb to that accursed chair in dream sequences and at the very end of her life in Game Of Thrones, and even their appearances are strikingly similar. I can only hope for Rhaenyra’s sake that her writers don’t fail her the same way that Benioff and Weiss failed Daenerys and her legions of fans, and in so doing tainted the Iron Throne to the point where even seeing it onscreen again brings back feelings of disappointment and regret.

House Of The Dragon will at least feature a relatively more diverse main cast than Game Of Thrones, which relegated most of its characters of color to the outskirts of the story. Most of the characters from House Valeryon, including Corlys Valeryon and his children Laenor and Laena, will be portrayed by Black actors, and the fascinating Mysaria, Rhaenyra and Daemon’s Mistress of Whisperers, will be played by Japanese actress Sonoya Mizuno. All of these characters have integral roles in the Targaryen civil war, and I can’t wait to see more of them.

And, of course, there will be plenty of dragons for everyone wondering…although they’re absent from this teaser trailer, which I think is a mistake. I understand that House Of The Dragon is still in post-production, so HBO probably doesn’t have any good dragon footage ready to go just yet, but in that case they should have just waited until they did. The show has dragons in the title, Matt Smith’s narration and HBO’s new tagline for the show both use the quote “Dreams didn’t make us kings…dragons did”, and the trailer itself has no dragons. It’s very disappointing in that regard, particularly seeing as dragons are a really big part of the Dance of the Dragons storyline…as you’d expect from, you know, the name.

House Of The Dragon
Rhaenyra Targaryen | hindustantimes.com

But now we wait…for a specific release date to be announced, for HBO to show us some dragons already, for the coin to finally land and decide whether House Of The Dragon can reclaim the throne that Game Of Thrones itself willfully abdicated in its final season, or whether it will all come tumbling down, like the easily-avoidable pile of bricks that ultimately killed Cersei and Jaime Lannister because dying ignominiously in the penultimate episode was better than surviving into that dumpster-fire of a series finale.

Trailer Rating: 8/10