That. Battle. Dear. God.
You can have your Lord of the Rings-esque "Blackwater" and "Watchers on the Wall," or the otherworldly White Walker showdown in "Hardhome." I'll take "Battle of the Bastards," which delivered a new kind of epic action sequence: grimy, claustrophobic, miserable, chaotic, sinister, gut-wrenching, gut-splitting, gut-carving -- the Hell on Earth that was this fight. Medieval. There's been a handful of13th-century battles staged on the big screen (half of them directed by Ridley Scott), but none of them comes close to the colliding horses and broadsword bloodshed that made clear: a Lord of Light is looking out for ol' Jon Snow. When Jon climbs his way out from under a pile of bodies -- a scene pulled from both Rome's Battle of Cannae and the American Civil War, per D.B. Weiss -- and takes to a hill of his own men's dead bodies, we grabbed for the wine faster than Tyrion. Stressful. Grand. Perfect.