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Game of Thrones shock ending

Michael DeLaney

Spoilers for last night’s epsiode

Last night’s episode of Game of Thrones was one of those curious pop culture/social media marriages that lead to fans’ shock and outrage ruling the Twittersphere. If you haven’t seen last night’s Game of Thrones then you might want to stop reading.

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The Lannisters, Game of Thrones’ resident Mean Girls, were absent from this latest installment but their presence was most definitely felt at the episode’s end. The basics of this brutal plot twist are these: lionhearted pretty boy King Robb Stark went back on a vow that he made to Lord Walder Frey (who used to roam the halls of Gryffindor for you Harry Potter wizards out there) and Frey in turn decided to exact bloody vengeance.

Earlier in the season King Robb (Richard Madden) made a promise to Lord Frey (David Bradley) that he would marry one of his daughters in exchange for support in the Stark’s war against the Lannisters. Robb broke said promise because he was in love, which of course conquers all. Except for knives and arrows; love doesn’t conquer those.

So it was that Lord Frey extended the olive branch to our Abercrombie model King and the Starks were welcomed into his home for a wedding and feast. Just when everyone seemed like bffs again, the Starks got unceremoniously mowed down by Lord Frey’s men on the behalf of those platinum pricks the Lannisters.

The event in this season’s penultimate episode is known to Game of Thrones readers as “The Red Wedding” (nothing ominous there.) The Red Wedding was a turn in the series which originally took place in creator George R.R. Martin’s novel A Storm of Swords.  

Game of Thrones has never shied away from the blood and guts, but this latest bloodbath was certainly more memorable in its violence.  It began with the vicious stabbing of Robb’s wife Talisa, along with her unborn child. Robb and his mother Catelyn then are taken down by multiple arrows before both having their throats slit.  Fade to black.

Yikes. The stabbing of a pregnant woman’s belly alone is enough to give you the night terrors.  Game of Thrones just cleared the deck of a handful of fan favorite characters; I mean they even killed the dog (wolf)!

Other highlights from the episode include young paraplegic/psychic wonder child Bran using the force, Daenerys Targaryen continuing her conquest across the lands and Jon Snow being a perpetual buzz kill.

None of those plot points are worth a pint of mead compared to that mass execution at the end of the episode.  Game of Thrones excels at its word-of-mouth shock marketing, and this is just the latest conversation piece. The Red Wedding will undoubtedly have Game of Thrones fans talking all week about the violence, the surprise and next week’s season finale.

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