Winter is here! HBO brings “Game of Thrones: The Complete Seventh Season” to Blu-ray and DVD with every shocking episode that keeps fans coming back for more.

The chess pieces are all set to play at Arya (Maisie Williams) deals with House Frey and learns Jon Snow (Kit Harington) is now King of Winterfell and her feet head in the direction of home. That isn’t stopping the White Walkers who continue their march toward the wall. Gathering together at Winterfell, Jon Snow makes every effort to forge alliances and Sansa (Sophie Turner) lets him know she is not happy. Knowing they need House Umber and House Karstark, Jon understands the need to grow their army.

Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbaek) shows up on the doorsteps of King’s Landing trying to woo Cersei (Lena Headey) into a great alliance which she quickly, and with a smirk, declines. Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) tries to forget the exchange but informing Cersei that they need allies.

The mother of Dragons visits her next home at Dragonstone and she isn’t alone as Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) is still by her side as well as the dragons. Plans are being made to send soldiers to Sunspear while the Unsullies make their way to Casterly Rock. To her surprise, Melisandre (Carice van Houten) arrives telling her of the potential of partnering with Jon Snow. Not convinced that he should go, a letter from Samwell convinces him even more that he must meet with Daenerys (Emilia Clarke).

Samwell (John Bradley) is also busy discovering a way to heal Jorah (Iain Glen) of the illness that took him away from the Queen he loves. When Jon and Daenerys finally meet, he is taken aback at her demand that he subserve himself before her. He lets her know that isn’t going to happen and that the reason he has even come is for the dragonglass that can only be found on the island.

Sansa continues on at Winterfell and Bran (Isaac Wright) tries to explain to his sister of his change. Another sibling reunion happens as Arya returns and shows a side of herself that Sansa has never seen. Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) sees that Arya has become skilled with her sword. As this happens, Littlefinger (Aidan Gillen) gives Bran a weapon that he might well remember and begins a scheme that pits sister against sister.

Jaime is now in Highgarden as Cersei must convince her allies that a delivery of gold is not far away. It is what Jaime and Bronn (Jerome Flynn) find at Highgarden sends them back with news for Cersei that sets up her next move.

When Jon and Daenerys go into the cave that has the dragonglass, they find ancient cave drawings that tell them a story she must now accept. What Daenerys learns sets her on a path to help Jon fight the White Walkers at the Wall. She also takes matters into her own hands by the treason of two soldiers loyal to Cersei against the advice of Tyrion.

Jon knows that the only way to convince more of the Houses to help is to capture a White Walker for proof they exist. As the Night King moves forward, Daenerys arrives to help and several events bring Jon to pledge himself to her.

Finally, Jon, Daenerys, Tyrion, Jamie and Cersei are brought together as they all try and explain what is happening with the White Walkers. Cersei patiently listens and agrees to help but what she says and what she does are both questionable. It is Samwell returning to Winterfell where he speaks with Bran about Jon’s true place in the Seven Kingdoms.

Of course, the Army of the Dead is still on the march!

Clarke as Daenerys moves closer to the Iron Throne but has more than enough obstacles in her way. I love how in the midst of madness, Clarke portrays her character with slow deliberateness and gets a little irritated now and then and all I can think of is ‘she’s keeping it together better than I would!’. Of course as this season unfolds, she is forced to learn a history she didn’t know and accept what she always thought was a story told in childhood.

Harington as John Snow is meshing everything he has become over the seven seasons. He still believes in the Stark family (even if treated like an unwelcomed guests at times), the brotherhood of the Nights Watch and all while being drawn to defeat the White Walkers at all cost. Basically he’s a busy guy! Harington is amazing and I am so with every bit of his characters twists and turns. The ending of this season is going to be interesting in Season 8.

Dinklage as Tyrion is still at the side of Daenerys and believes in her being Queen. Where Tyrion has come is a far cry from the drinking and womanizing Lannister that so irritated his father and still does Cersei. I see his character growing even more as the pieces move around the Seven Kingdoms chessboard.

Heady as Cersei finally has what she has always wanted, to sit defiantly on a throne and do what ever she must to defend it. She doesn’t hesitate to take out anything in front of her and that includes family of any kind. Trusting no one has always been part of her problem and I suspect (since I haven’t read the books) it will continue to be a problem. Coster-Waldau as Jamie wants to support his demented sister but there is clearly a part of him that may not be all in but that doesn’t stop him from fighting for Kings Landing. Jamie is another character that has gone through so many changes that what happens next may have me cheering for another Lannister!

Turner as Sansa is finally discovering what it takes to be a leader. All grown up and filled with life lessons no one should have to learn, she thinks more clearly than ever and is ready to defend Winterfell. Working along side Jon Snow, it is a chance to be a Stark family once again. Williams as Arya once again joins the fold and boy it is a wild ride when these two women let everyone at Winterfell know that they are no longer just Stark children. Arya is strong, tough and every bit a badass that Sansa needs to never again let anyone take advantage of a Stark.

Bradley as Samwell is Jon Snow’s secret weapon! Dedicated to finding answers, he pours through books and even some he shouldn’t to make things happen. I love the simpleness of this character and Bradley still gives him a strength that is quite unexpected at times. Glen as Jorah is the recipient of Samwell’s knowledge and no one needs more allies than the Mother of Dragons.

Christie as Brienne is wielding her sword once again for House Stark. She is watching every move that is made around the new ruling family and isn’t about to let anything, even seeing Jamie Lannister again get in her way of loyalty. Van Houten as Melisandre returns and this time wants to help Daenerys accomplish her goal. I love her smoothness in delivering news…good, bad or indifferent she delivers.

Asbaek as Euron is just a throw around don’t-give-a-damn Greyjoy! He would even marry Cersei to get his butt on the Iron Throne and when she doesn’t swoon so easy, he goes out and brings back a kill to impress her. Flynn as Bronn still has Jamie’s back but is equally surprised when the battle at Highgarden begins.

Gillen as Littlefinger is still up to his old manipulating tricks. It must be said that Gillen is absolutely had his hand in everything that has gone on in “Game of Thrones.” Whether it is a big manipulation or small, Gillen has performed brilliantly and I have to give his character props for fooling so many for so long by just being Littlefinger. Wright as Bran has a part yet to play I suspect but I have to admit that Wright’s portrayal is a little bit freaky to witness – awesome!

Other cast include: Liam Cunningham as Davos Seaworth, Nathalie Emmanuel as Missandei, Indira Varma as Ellaria Sand, Conleth Hill as Varys, Hannah Murray as Gilly, Kristopher Hivju as Tormund Giantsbane, Rory McCann as The Hound, Joe Dempsie as Gendry, Joseph Mawle as Benjen Stark, Ben Hawkey as Hot Pie, Vladimir Furdik as the Night King, and Megan Parkinson as Alys Karstark.

The Blu-ray and DVD contain exclusive new bonus content that includes “Audio Commentary,” “Two New Behind-The-Scenes Featurettes” as well as a bonus disc containing “Conquest & Rebellion: An Animated History of the Seven Kingdoms,” “a 45-Minute Never-Before-Seen Extension of the Clio Award-Winning History & Lore” included on previous individual Blu-ray season releases.

“Game of Thrones: The Complete Seventh Season” on Blu-ray is so stunning to see. It is even more vivid that the series airing on HBO. I mean I have an excellent television but the Blu-ray just absolutely blew me away. There are only seven episodes which bummed many GOT fans but none of us can say the season was any less epic.

The stories continue to be complex with no simple answers (which I love) and clearly the Iron Throne is up for grabs. George R.R. Martin is responsible for creating this amazing kingdom and cast of characters that has enraptured so many of us. Writing “A Song of Ice and Fire,” it became the jumping off point and in 2011 and in it’s first season alone, “Game of Thrones” garnered 13 Emmy nominations and Peter Dinklage winning Best Supporting Actor.

This is what excellent storytelling and television can do when we all look for epic reasons to stay home on a Sunday night. It is what brings conversations at the office, on a road trip or waiting at San Diego Comic Con International for the panel to begin. “Game of Thrones” has brought conversation and fans of all ages into a world that is truly a wonder to behold.

So, expanding your home entertainment library to include “Game of Thrones: The Complete Seventh Season” is a must. Trust me, it looks very cool on the shelf next to seasons one through six. As Season Eight is still in the works, there is nothing better than marathoning every season until we hear the epic opening music and map of the Seven Kingdoms!

In the end – who will take the Iron Throne?

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About the Author

Jeri Jacquin

Jeri Jacquin covers film, television, DVD/Bluray releases, celebrity interviews, festivals and all things entertainment.