If you are a fan of Game of Thrones and have not watched the most recent season 1) What are you doing with your life?  2) This article will contain spoilers towards the end, you have been warned.

        Many critics have complained that this season has not been as gritty and unrestrained as others season have been. Fans have also been bothered by the pacing of the latest season as plot points that would normally take the show seasons to resolve, are beginning and concluding within the same episode. Many reviewers cite the fact that the show is now ahead of George R.R Martin’s series A Song of Ice and Fire as the reason for the sudden change in pace and plot resolution.

(warning: spoilers!)

        If you haven’t seen the season and are still reading for some reason, this is where things will get spoilery. As previously mentioned, this season was one of the fastest paced seasons yet. One major detail of season 7 is that characters who have not met for many seasons, or even never met at all, finally shared some screen time. This season finally showed the return of Arya and Bran to Winterfell. While technically Bran is no longer Bran and is now the Three Eyed Raven, his homecoming was just as heartwarming as anticipated. Arya returned home with a personality change shocking Sansa and everyone else who knew her as a little girl, as teenager, she has grown to be somewhat terrifying and dubious. These new traits seem to work in her favor though, as they help her and Sansa to eventually (finally) kill Littlefinger.

By far the most exciting aspect of season 7 was the long awaited meeting and eventual alliance of Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen. Not only are these characters two of the fan favorites, but there are also two of the most powerful leaders on the show. The title of the original novel itself even foreshadows their pairing; Jon Snow brings the ice while Daenerys brings the fire (literally, with her dragons).  Jon’s simple trip to enlist the help of Daenerys in the fight against the army of the dead becomes infinitely more complicated when it becomes obvious there is an attraction between the two of them. While this couple would be completely perfect and powerful, fans were brought back down to earth with the speculation (and later confirmation) that, unbeknownst to them, Jon is Daenerys’ nephew. However, this fact did not make the writers hesitate in writing the final scene of the season in which the two characters share an… intimate moment.

        The lineage of Jon brings up yet another shocking and interesting plot point. The fan theory R+L=J (Rhaegar+Lyanna=Jon) was confirmed in the season 6 finale and the season 7 finale just brings more interesting information to the identity of Jon’s true parents. In a shocking scene, Bran and Sam combine their knowledge to establish the fact that the true father of Jon is not Ned Stark, but Rhaegar Targaryen, the older brother of Daenerys. The scene also reveals that Jon’s true mother is not some random bar maiden like he had thought, but Lyanna Stark, the sister of Ned. With this information coming to light they also make the discovery that Jon is the rightful heir to the Iron Throne. I wouldn’t get my hopes up though, in this show “rightful” doesn’t seem to mean very much, as shown by the reign of Joffrey.

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