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David Basckin... On the Couch: Whammo of catastrophic climactic endings

There are endings, climaxes and catastrophes. Somehow, the writers of Game of Thrones managed to combine all these concepts into one thundering finale which concluded long-overdue revenge while leaving an extraordinary amount of action just waiting for the next series to get going. 

So what did we get? Vicariously we shared Tyrion’s sense of deep personal psychological closure in terms of the trouble he has always had with his dad. Not only did his dad hate him, humiliate him and, not to put too fine a point on it, despise him, but set up a judicial fix second to none leading to the death sentence. We find the convicted prisoner in his stinking cell when miraculously, his one-handed but very good looking incestuous brother manages to rip himself off his sister rather like a limpet off a rock and finds the time and the opportunity to facilitate Tyrion’s escape. Tyrion, small but exceptionally brave and intellectually gifted, takes the opportunity to pass through his sleeping father’s bedroom.

As was usual in those distant times, nobles slept with the lights on and a comely retainer usually, but not necessarily, female adorning the bed. Into this place tiptoes our hero who accidentally wakens his father’s bed companion. Wouldja belieeeeeve it! It is Shay or Che – you decide – Tyrion’s one true love who puzzlingly lied at his trial and indirectly sentenced him to death. 

She wakens. Tyrion, noting the beautiful necklace he once gave her around her neck, strangles her to death with it. Once the twitching and gargling noises are over, he seizes a crossbow off the wall, loads it and seeks his father. Tywin is on the medieval toilet, wearing a dark dressing gown. Tywin makes a good but failed attempt at diplomacy followed by a shaft to the heart from Tyrion, his son. 

There’s some slow gasping noises, while Tyrion reloads then whammo! the second shaft finds its mark, and like Elvis, Tywin dies astride the long drop. Goodbye, Tywin, you were one hell of a fine actor.

Meanwhile, back on the frozen wastes of Montana, Fargo is only two episodes away from its apocalypse. Our verminous anti-hero has climbed out of his pit and despite all signs to the contrary, has ascended the greasy ladder of insurance salesmanship to win an award from his company. With his new wife in tow, he makes a speech at the prize giving which takes place at a casino-hotel in Las Vegas.

Not only is there a new wife in his life, but his hairstyle and clothing have enjoyed major makeovers. In short he’s a success, he’s on top, he’s boiling with whatever it is that makes salesmen into super salesmen. With the festivities over his wife goes up to bed while he, briefly enticed by some smiling women at the bar, decides to stay downstairs for a nightcap, as he calls it. There’s some typical late-night hotel bar dalliance and low-grade flirtation and our little chum is well on the way to making it, whatever it turns out to be. Sadly for his libido, a glance across the uncrowded room totally extinguishes his gung-ho super salesman’s lust as he sees his nemesis, the crazed killer and antichrist Malvo, seated amiably chatting at a nearby table. Pulse-racing television. Do not under any circumstances miss next week’s instalment.

*This column first appeared in the June 29 issue of the Sunday Tribune SMtv*

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