*Warning: Spoilers included*
After the release of "The Long Night", Game of Thrones is already halfway through its final season. While this episode was highly anticipated as the pinnacle of fighting for the entire show, it included an unexpected twist: the demise of the White Walkers. Ever since the very first episode, the White Walkers terrorized the northern regions beyond the wall with their piercing blue eyes. Throughout the show, they have been gradually moving more southern for the final battle against mankind, what fans commonly referred to as "The Battle of Winterfell" in this last episode.
Fans anticipated the worst possible outcomes for "The Long Night", expecting some if not all of the main characters to die defending the human race at Winterfell. On social media, fans hypothesized which characters would die. At the end of "The Long Night", fans complained about not only the lighting but also how little characters actually died in comparison to their expectations.
But the real shock that stirred GOT fans was the death of the Night King, the ominous leader of the White Walkers. Although very little background information about him has been mentioned in the show, a scene in one of Bran's flashbacks envisions the creation of the Night King thousands of years ago by the Children of the Forest. This is one of the few scenes of the entire show which gives context to the Night King's character. So all fans really knew about the Night King was where he was created and that he was a villain. Ever since the appearance of the Night King's character in Season 6 with "Hardhome", the characters, especially Jon Snow, have been preparing for the battle against the White Walkers.
Although the battle in "The Long Night" has been anticipated for the entirety of the show, it was extremely underwhelming. The White Walkers seemed to be undefeatable not only because of the massive size of their army but also the limited methods to kill beings that have already died. Additionally, the Night King possesses the power to add new members to his army with the rise of his hands. I always considered the White Walkers to be unstoppable, and Bran confirmed this in the show by stating "No one can kill the Night King".
Well, "no one" surely was a clever way for Bran to hint that his sister, Arya Stark, would kill the Night King during the "Long Night". This ending shocked fans worldwide, and while it was a fantastic twist, I think that removing the Night King and all of the White Walkers dulls the plot. The White Walkers were the most epic and unexpected characters in the entire show, and now that they are all gone, we are left with Cersei as the central villain. Instead of the Night King, the focus of the show shifts to the question of who will sit on the Iron Throne. Additionally, because there was no background context to the Night King, removing him from the show leaves fans forever in mystery wondering about his former life, his identity, his intentions, etc.
Therefore, I think the ending in "The Long Night" was extremely underwhelming. The doubtful and sudden end to the Night King and ergo the White Walkers was extremely unrealistic, considering the thousands of years which men lost to the White Walkers. Although I understand the directors' intent to make Arya the heroine, I think the decision to cut the White Walkers and the Night King without providing any context to their characters was an incredibly weak decision that left fans like me not only shocked but also disappointed.