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'Love is more powerful than reason.' On 'Game of Thrones' and our real-life allegiances

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20.05.2019

Note: This piece contains spoilers for "Game of Thrones" season 8, episode 6.

“Love is more powerful than reason. We all know that,” said Tyrion Lannister, captive prisoner of Daenerys Targaryen, as he tried to persuade Jon Snow to kill Daenerys, newly installed as queen, and save the Realm. As "Game of Thrones" wrapped up its eight-season run on Sunday night, Tyrion’s bit of wisdom explains quite a bit about both the highly divided reception to the show’s final season — and a little something about our divided politics.

Prior to Sunday night’s show, I had been deeply let down by season 8’s “The Bells,” the episode which both provided the audience with unbelievable spectacle and with the divisive choice to have Daenerys snap at the moment of her total victory, needlessly burning hundreds of thousands of innocent residents of King’s Landing. For me, despite seasons of establishing Daenerys as capable of both great kindness and tough leadership, the choice to suddenly turn her rage onto completely innocent people en masse felt rushed, without a proper precipitating trigger to send her over the edge at the very moment she had won. Emotionally, it didn’t work for me.

It worked for my friend Nicole. It worked a lot. Over the course of the........

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