The night was dark and — from what we could see of it — full of terrors.
In the aptly titled “The Long Night” episode of “Game of Thrones,” the Night King brought his teeming army of the undead to assault the defenders of the living at Winterfell. He is evidently not a morning person. The army arrived under cloak of darkness, and the hour-plus combat that ensued unfolded with all the chromatic variety of a goth teenager’s wardrobe.
[Read our ultimate guide to “Game of Thrones.”]
This was something we have seen, or rather not seen, before. Funereal color palettes have become a signature of ambitious TV drama. The likes of “Ozark” and “True Detective” externalize their angst by painting the world in shades of black and blue. Natural-lit night scenes and gloomy filters have rendered expensive widescreens into charcoal rubbings of semi-perceptible movement.
At best, the device can establish mood. At worst, it’s a frustrating cliché, hostile to narrative and eyeballs, that substitutes fog for feeling. As a pretentious TV producer exclaimed on the most recent season of “BoJack Horseman,” “The darkness is a metaphor for darkness!”
In “The Long Night,” murk piled on top of mayhem, shadows tumbled across the screen by torchlight. And in a battle whose length and phantasmagoria befit a prog-rock double album, it reduced a climax eight years in the making to an inky, ill-defined scrum of beards and bones. (The final lesson of “Game of Thrones,” apparently, is to hang on to your old plasma TVs with their sharply defined blacks.)
To be fair, immersing the viewer in the confusion of war is a choice, and it can be devastating. “Saving Private Ryan” exposed a mass audience to war as a disorienting assault, where you can never get your bearings or know where the next bullet is coming from. “Game of Thrones” has done this well — say, in the epic battle sequence of “Hardhome.” (Also directed, like “Long Night,” by the capable Miguel Sapochnik.)
But here, the squint-to-see-them images were chaotic even when we were clearly meant to take in information: Who just died? Which dragon bit which?
“Game of Thrones” is a series that speaks visually as much as it does through dialogue. After last week’s outstanding “A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms” — almost entirely a series of conversations — “The Long Night” did its talking through image. Too often, what it had to say was mumblemurmurmumble.
But there were also images that absolutely sang. And those were scenes that used the darkness to a purpose — not as a shroud, but as a physical presence.
The first scene began the battle, as the Dothraki cavalry charged the yet-unseen army of the dead. Thanks to the fire magic of Melisandre (Carice van Houten), their curved swords are ignited and they ride off, a surging wave of orange seen from overhead in the dark.
The score fades to stillness. The flames get farther away. They form a line on the horizon. There are distant sounds of clashing. Then slowly, quietly, the fires die out.
Now, I have substantive questions about this attack. Strategically, it might not have been the best opening move by an army outfitted with two dragons and a weird teen who can possess reconnaissance ravens! It is also unsettling, in a series that has had issues around race and exoticism, to send off an army of nonwhite characters as zombie fodder. (I am not the first to note the similarity to the “Operation Human Shield” story line in the 1999 “South Park” movie, in which a general ordered his black soldiers to sacrifice themselves on the front line.)
But as the first taste of the horrors to come, it is astonishing. In a series devoted to spectacle, it harnesses the power of what we can’t see. The Dothraki were established in the first episode as the most fearsome warriors on Earth; we saw them plow through the Lannister army as if it were a field of buttercups.
Facing — whatever is out there — this indomitable army gutters out like birthday candles. The faces of the onlookers register this in quietly dawning dread. At least as far as I can see them.
The second scene comes at the end of the battle — actually, it ends the battle in one swift stroke. The defenders of Winterfell, it seems, are losing in a rout. The Night King has raised the dead from the battle (corpses are a renewable resource). The castle and its crypt are breached. Theon Greyjoy (Alfie Allen), all that stood between the leader of the dead and Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright), the personified memory of life in Westeros, has been impaled like a cocktail onion.
Ramin Djawadi’s score (the show’s M.V.P., crystalline even in the muddiest of moments) shifts from martial to plaintive. Old Blue Eyes steps forward from the snowy wood, reaches for his frosty sword, arrogant, impassive. And then, over his shoulder, out of the blue-black mist, leaps Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) with a scream and the dagger that will find the Smaug-like gap in the Night King’s armor.
Again, I have issues with what this means for the story. For years, “Game of Thrones” has been a story of the folly of seeking power. The consuming battle to rule Westeros — the “game” cynically named as such by the villainous Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey) — is precisely what kept the continent from uniting to face this threat. Now, with this existential threat eliminated three episodes before the finale, it seems as though that foolish game might become the series’ endgame, as if the Iron Throne, and not life, were the real prize all along.
But come on: My heart is not made of dragonglass. Arya — our Arya, who begged to learn sword fighting, who attended her father’s execution, who befriended a pie baker and outargued lords, who wandered a war-blasted country, who studied face-changing and murder, who gained deadly power but seemed to lose her soul — got this done.
And Sapochnik did not throw away that shot, channeling the force of eight years of story into a jagged last stab. The battle began with life vanishing into the pitiless dark; it ended with life desperately leaping out of it. It’s too bad we couldn’t see more of what transpired in between.
It was a fitting showcase for a series that, in its later years, has stood out more as a collection of indelible individual scenes than seamless episodes. “Game of Thrones” has had gigantic battles before; it may have another in store. But it reminded us, in the most memorable moment of the Battle of Winterfell, that it does its best work when it slips in the blade like an assassin.B:
今晚开奖结果现场直播直播现场直播【叶】【南】【这】【文】【胆】【一】【出】，【又】【一】【次】【惊】【艳】【了】【众】【圣】。 “【其】【色】【碧】【绿】，【声】【如】【钟】【磬】，【形】【似】【文】【器】——【这】【是】【文】【胆】【大】【成】，【马】【上】【就】【要】【化】【作】**【文】【宫】【之】【重】【器】【了】【啊】！” 【有】【圣】【人】【紧】【紧】【拽】【住】【自】【己】【的】【胡】【子】，【双】【眼】【之】【中】【颇】【有】【意】【动】：【他】【打】【算】【收】【叶】【南】【为】【徒】。 【古】【往】【今】【来】，【圣】【前】【进】【士】【有】【过】，【文】【胆】【大】【成】【的】【读】【书】【人】【有】【过】，【能】【斩】【妖】【圣】【分】【身】【的】【进】【士】【没】【有】，【但】【翰】【林】【却】【有】【过】。
“【发】【妻】？” 【毕】【晟】【的】【表】【情】【有】【些】【破】【碎】，【却】【不】【似】【难】【看】，“【早】【传】【闻】【百】【里】【执】【法】【官】【已】【大】【婚】，【却】【不】【见】【身】【旁】【有】【一】【女】【子】【出】【入】，【便】【以】【为】【是】【传】【言】【不】【可】【信】，【没】【想】【到】，【竟】【然】【是】【真】【的】。” “【夫】【人】【向】【来】【深】【居】【简】【出】，【不】【问】【世】【事】。” 【既】【然】【是】【百】【里】【弑】【的】【夫】【人】，【毕】【晟】【自】【然】【没】【有】【理】【由】【动】【手】，【更】【何】【况】【他】【本】【来】【也】【就】【是】【想】【造】【就】【声】【势】【而】【已】，【现】【如】【今】… “【夫】【人】【心】
【风】【雪】【对】【这】【回】【答】【很】【不】【满】【意】，【气】【鼓】【鼓】【问】：“【只】【是】【比】【她】【好】【看】？” 【顾】【铭】【机】【灵】，【立】【马】【改】【口】：“【不】！【你】【比】【这】【世】【上】【的】【任】【何】【女】【孩】【都】【好】【看】。” 【两】【人】【微】【笑】【对】【视】，【彼】【此】【的】【眼】【睛】【里】【都】【只】【有】【对】【方】，【空】【气】【里】【也】【弥】【散】【一】【抹】【甜】【味】。 【此】【时】，【许】【成】【语】【还】【不】【知】【道】【陆】【思】【的】【心】【境】【变】【化】，【他】【沉】【默】【着】【走】【过】【来】【时】，【恰】【好】【听】【到】【这】【两】【人】【的】【对】【话】。【他】【知】【道】，【自】【己】【和】【陆】【思】【还】今晚开奖结果现场直播直播现场直播【陈】【强】【曾】【经】【是】【美】【网】【的】【冠】【军】，【时】【隔】【五】【年】【再】【次】【来】【到】【美】【网】【赛】【场】【上】，【自】【然】【是】【备】【受】【关】【注】。【然】【而】【人】【们】【更】【关】【注】【的】【则】【是】【他】【千】【万】【富】【翁】【的】【身】【份】。 【美】【国】【毕】【竟】【是】【一】【个】【资】【本】【的】【社】【会】，【整】【个】【二】【十】【世】【纪】【的】【美】【国】，【阶】【级】【固】【化】【并】【没】【有】【未】【来】【那】【么】【的】【严】【重】，“【美】【国】【梦】”【更】【是】【实】【实】【在】【在】【经】【常】【发】【生】【在】【美】【国】【人】【身】【边】【的】【事】【情】，【这】【个】【时】【代】【的】【美】【国】【人】【对】“【创】【造】【财】【富】”【格】【外】【的】【向】【往】
【看】【到】【对】【面】【锐】【雯】【的】【话】，【苏】【晨】【的】【嘴】【角】【以】【肉】【眼】【可】【见】【的】【速】【度】，【上】【扬】【了】【一】【个】【弧】【度】。 “【没】【想】【到】【我】【苏】【晨】【也】【终】【于】【成】【峡】【谷】【带】【明】【星】【了】！”【苏】【晨】【内】【心】【暗】【暗】【感】【叹】。 【要】【知】【道】【曾】【几】【何】【时】【苏】【晨】【也】【是】【非】【常】【羡】【慕】，【那】【些】【在】【峡】【谷】【之】【巅】【玩】【游】【戏】【能】【遇】【到】【水】【友】【或】【者】【粉】【丝】【的】。 【只】【是】【当】【时】【苏】【晨】【没】【什】【么】【名】【气】，【虽】【然】【热】【度】【在】【随】【时】【间】【增】【长】，【但】【是】【在】【游】【戏】【中】【却】【鲜】【少】【遇】【到】【这】
P【城】【的】【房】【子】【很】【多】，【但】【是】【多】【数】【房】【子】【都】【是】【成】【片】【区】【划】【分】【的】。 【李】【海】【清】【大】【概】【扫】【了】【一】【眼】【其】【余】【五】【个】【人】【飞】【的】【地】【方】，【自】【己】【这】【五】【栋】【楼】【房】【处】【没】【人】，【马】【路】【对】【面】【飞】【过】【去】【两】【个】，【主】【城】【区】【飞】【了】【四】【个】【人】，【他】【则】【处】【于】【相】【当】【偏】【僻】【的】【位】【置】！ 【李】【海】【清】【立】【刻】【钻】【进】【了】【一】【栋】【两】【层】【小】【楼】【内】，【一】【阵】【搜】【索】【之】【后】，【一】【把】UMP9，【一】【个】【二】【级】【背】【包】，【二】【级】【防】【弹】【衣】，【一】【级】【绿】【帽】【子】【和】
【胡】【老】【大】【不】【但】【阴】【私】，【而】【且】【缺】【德】，【前】【前】【后】【后】【两】【次】【不】【顾】【众】【人】【死】【活】【放】【大】【火】，【要】【知】【道】【家】【家】【户】【户】【都】【紧】【挨】【这】，【天】【气】【干】【燥】，【一】【阵】【风】【就】【能】【让】【村】【子】【变】【成】【火】【海】，【这】【比】【烧】【祠】【堂】【更】【不】【能】【让】【人】【原】【谅】。 【十】【月】【撅】【嘴】，【还】【是】【小】【声】【嘟】【囔】【着】【烧】【坏】【她】【裙】【子】【怎】【么】【办】【巴】【巴】，【巴】【巴】【的】。【但】【她】【最】【怕】【胡】【有】【水】，【还】【是】【去】【了】，【去】【没】【去】【救】【火】，【就】【不】【知】【道】【了】。 【这】【边】【回】【到】【家】，【白】【氏】【他】