With the season finale of Game of Thrones airing tomorrow, I felt it was time to revisit my predictions for the season and see how close my pre-season six thoughts lined up to the reality of what the show delivered. I wouldn’t say I’ve been overwhelmingly right about the season, but of my seventeen numbered predictions, eleven were all or mostly correct. Which is depressing, because my predictions for the season were not very optimistic. Thank goodness I didn’t do this for every episode, I guess? I probably would have had an even higher success rate, but I don’t even want to think about how much more depressing that would have been.
In any case, let’s go through these one by one. Spoilers for the whole season so far, obviously.
- The show isn’t really “past the books.”
This was my number one prediction for season six, and I was absolutely correct about it. If anything, this season has hewed closer to the source material than either of the previous two season, at least in terms of bringing events from the novels to the screen. Even the handful of events so far that haven’t occurred yet in the books are ones that it’s not entirely impossible to extrapolate from the text. That said, when it comes to themes and meaning, the show still misses the mark entirely, continuing to prove that just because a pair of dudes managed to get MFAs in creative writing doesn’t mean they have any reading comprehension skills.
- Jon Snow is alive.
This was an easy prediction, and it was confirmed in the first episode of the season. I don’t think anyone seriously thought it wouldn’t be, but I did rather think the show would try to drag out the suspense a little longer than they did.
- Myrcella is dead.
I thought Cersei’s reaction would be more dramatic, but there were no real consequences for anyone after Myrcella’s death, and the Dorne stuff was wrapped up in a profoundly stupid but likely final fashion that had nothing to do with Cersei at all. I’m only counting this one as half-right, though.
- Daenerys was decidedly damselled, and she had several nonsensical faux-empowerment speeches.
Another correct prediction, and those speeches were the worst (Daenerys speeches, this season). I’m counting this one as fully correct even though Jorah and Daario didn’t have quite as big a role in Dany’s eventual “rescue” as I thought they would.
- Lesbian Yara is horrendous.
Listen, I’m not even going to cite the book stuff on this one because, frankly, just what the show has done with Yara is awful from top to bottom, from Yara patronizing a brothel staffed with literal sex slaves to her queerbaiting “flirtations” with Daenerys in episode nine.
- Tyrion is not only de facto ruling Meereen most of the season, he’s actually given more of Daenerys’s A Dance with Dragons storyline than she ever got. His treatment of Grey Worm and Missandei is even worse than my worst wildest dreams of what it would be.
Every scene with Tyrion, Grey Worm, and Missandei is a lowlight of the season for me, and each one is more embarrassingly badly written than the one before.
- Sam and Gilly made it to Horn Hill, but there was no pity sex.
I was genuinely surprised by this.
- Not only has there been kind of a lot of Bran, we haven’t even learned anything exciting or important from his visions.
Lots of Bran hype, but there hasn’t been much payoff. Hodor’s death was shocking, sort of, but more emotionally manipulative than actually effecting.
- Jorah is still alive.
I was certain that Jorah would sacrifice himself heroically to save Daenerys or something, but that seems to not be in the cards this season.
- Melisandre didn’t even try to seduce Davos.
However, Davos’s brief flirtation with being Team Mel, back when he was pep talking her to get her to try and resurrect Jon Snow, was very weird. Somehow, he never even questioned what happened to Shireen until episode nine.
- Arya didn’t have any sex.
Another wrong prediction of mine, but I’m glad to be wrong about this one. I would say pleasantly surprised, but the show lived down to my expectations in plenty of other ways.
- It’s actually not entirely clear what the High Sparrow and the Faith Militant are concerned with this season.
I am still counting this one as half right because all the messaging about these guys is so muddled and it seems like the majority of what they’re concerned with is just making Cersei’s life as miserable as possible.
- We STILL don’t know who Jon Snow’s parents are.
I thought this was going to be the whole point of Bran’s visions, but unless this is going to be revealed in the season finale I was wrong about this one.
- Ramsay died!
By the time it happened, it wasn’t at all surprising, but I did not expect it going into the season.
- I’m pretty sure that “Daenerys in a sea of brown people” is one of this show’s favorite images.
And this year we’re seeing it used in versatile ways like to show how scary and mean all those brown people are and then to show how Daenerys is totally their feminist savior.
- Not everything was poorly lit, but this show still has a serious lighting problem.
Part of the reason things were better this year, though, is because at my house we’ve mostly been watching the show on a 50-inch plasma screen instead of on my 21-inch computer monitor. That makes a huge difference. The one episode we watched for the first time on my 13-inch Surface Pro was almost impossible to make anything out at all no matter what the lighting was like.
- I have gone through nine bottles of Flip Flop Riesling so far, which is a surprisingly drinkable for a $5 wine, and I will probably go through two more during the 69-minute-long season finale.
My liver will be happy when this is all over, I’m sure.