The fourth season of the epic fantasy television series Game of Thrones premiered on April 6, 2014, on HBO. It is based on the second half of A Storm of Swords, the third of the A Song of Ice and Fire novels by George R. R. Martin, of which the series is an adaptation. David Benioff and D. B. Weiss serve as main writers and showrunners for the fourth season. They co-wrote seven out of ten episodes. The remaining three episodes were written by Bryan Cogman (two episodes), and the author of A Song of Ice and Fire, George R. R. Martin (one episode).
“The Watchers on the Wall” is the ninth episode of the fourth season of HBO’s fantasy television series Game of Thrones, and the 39th overall. The episode was written by series co-creators David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, and directed by Neil Marshall. It aired on June 8, 2014. “The Watchers on the Wall” features the series’ smallest main credits cast to date: only five regulars (Kit Harington, John Bradley, Hannah Murray, Rose Leslie and Kristofer Hivju) appear in the episode. It is also only the second time, after season two’s “Blackwater” (also directed by Neil Marshall), that an episode has focused on one storyline, that of the Wildling assault on Castle Black.
Episode: The Watchers on the Wall (409). Date of Exhibition: June 8, 2014. Written by David Benioff & D. B. Weiss. Directed by Neil Marshall. Summary: As the Night’s Watch prepare the coming invasion by the wildlings, Jon and Sam have a conversation about Ygritte and the vows of the Night’s Watch, with Sam stating that having intercourse with a woman is not explicitly forbidden in the vows. In the library at Castle Black, Sam has a discussion with Maester Aemon about Gilly, who arrives at the wall shortly after. The reunion is cut short however as two horn blasts, indicating that Mance Rayder’s army has arrived. The wildlings attack from both sides, with one army climbing the wall, and Ygritte’s army climbing Castle Black’s boundary walls. After Ygritte and her army get through, a bloody battle ensues. The wildlings attempt to break through the tunnel leading into Castle Black with the help of several giants and a woolly mammoth. Ser Alliser Thorne goes down to the main level of Castle Black to fight, leaving Janos Slynt in charge, however Slynt proves himself to be incompetent as a commander, and he is tricked into going down the main level by Grenn, effectively leaving Jon in charge. Pyp is shot by Ygritte in the neck as blood starts to inevitably flow from his neck. Sam attempts to calm him down, however his attempts at saving Pyp’s life is futile. Pyp dies in Sam’s arms. After watching Jon kill Styr the Thenn, Ygritte prepares to kill Jon, but is killed by Olly after being shot through the heart with an arrow. Jon, seeing this, holds Ygritte in his arms as she dies. With the help of Jon’s direwolf, Ghost, the ground level of Castle Black is held by the Night’s Watch. The wall climbers are sliced apart and completely obliterated from a massive scythe that acts as the Wall’s secret weapon. The wildling army retreats, but not for long, Jon predicts. He knows that Mance will never give up and that the wildlings are only fighting because Mance is alive. If Mance dies, they will be leaderless and will tear themselves apart from the inside in the chaos that ensues. Seeing no other choice, Jon orders Sam to open the gate, and goes beyond the wall to find and kill Mance.
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