Brad put his thoughts on the episode up over at his campsite, and my comment ran a little long, so I decided to make my comment a stand-alone post. Brad's good at getting me thinking about stuff, which is why I like his blog so much, even if I don't agree with him on everything.
In any event, I kinda figured that Rickon was not going to survive the episode, and for the reasons Brad mentioned, I didn't really feel much emotion when he died. I mean, I could barely remember anything about Rickon at all. He's Ned's son. Okay. Other than that, I got nothing. Did anyone really feel that bad when he died?
I was sort of surprised that Jon Snow did exactly what Ramsay wanted, but the Starks sort of have this streak of "damn the torpedoes" in them, so it's not entirely out of character.
Once the Bolton army had Snow surrounded, I was thinking "No, not like this! It's supposed to be the other way around!"
I was really hoping the battle would unfold like the legendary Battle of Canne, where a numerically inferior force defeats a numerically superior force by letting the Boltons attack, bending back, and then folding in the flanks. I really wanted Jon Snow to have a glorious victory over such an evil foe and reclaim his family's home.
|Jon Snow was supposed to be the force in blue. He turned out to be the force in red. You never want to be the force in red on this type of map.|
However, the battle goes exactly the other way, and Sansa had to give us the deus ex machina to save the day, which was sort of satisfying in the way a surprise ending can be. Before that, I was thinking, "This is Canne in reverse! GoT is just evil."
The ending with Sansa starting to get into all the intrigue and killing Ramsay seemed to be her moving from the character that had things happen to her to becoming the character that actively did things. It's also made her a darker character, which fits with the overall GoT ethos.
Overall, I would have liked to have seen a Canne style victory for Jon, and you could still have had Sansa ride in late and keep her character development the same. Daenerys needs to really move along to Westeros. I'm sort of getting tired of her foolin' around with all these slave holders. Let's get her into the fight. I'm sure the season finale will lead us up close to that happening, but not quite all the way.