As the third season of HBO's "Game of Thrones" came to a close on Sunday night, fans were uniformly still in a state of shock from the events of the season's penultimate episode. But did the season's last episode live up to the finales that had come before? That was something they weren't so sure about.
As with most any discussion of "Game of Thrones," beware of spoilers below.
After Daenerys' nude dragon hatching that ended the first season and the army of zombies and White Walkers that ended Season 2, the third-season finale had a lot of expectations riding on it. Especially after the week before, which ended with the "Red Wedding" scene that saw Robb Stark, Catelyn Stark and Talisa Stark all brutally murdered by Lannister sympathizers.
In the final scene of the third season, Daenerys waited outside the city of Yunkai to see if she would be greeted as a liberator or a conqueror. As it turned out, she was seen as a liberator, beloved by the people of the city, who lifted her up on their shoulders and swarmed her by the thousands. It was a strangely upbeat and moving sequence for a series that frequently dwells in the dank and brutal (see last week). However, not everyone wanted upbeat -- they just wanted more violence.
Fan Karn Anand tweeted, "IMO, the season finale of Game of thrones was a li'l boring....!! The previous episode should have been the final chapter....!!"
Self-proclaimed hat enthusiast Adam Hunt also lamented, "Game of thrones, what a boring end to the season."
However, disappointment with the finale doesn't seem to be marking a waning of fan enthusiasm. As Evan McNamara wrote, "Game of Thrones I love you.. Anticlimactic, but I still love you. ."
Youthful fan Jessica Rowlands said, "At the end of the Game of Thrones season finale I felt exactly the same as I did after exams, deflated."
Another, more bloodthirsty fan tweeted, "last episode of Game of Thrones left me a bit empty. was kinda hoping for one more violent scene. now a year for the next season. argh!"
It seems that the producers of "Game of Thrones" have their own legion of violence-craving Joffreys awaiting their return in 2014.