They spent two episodes building up the suspense, but 45 minutes into this 90 minute episode it sort of became clear that most of the characters had plot armor. And all the sense of suspense fell to the ground because of it. Add to that they did the inconceivable - dispatched the Night King in a single episode - and son, I am disappoint.
Random thoughts - disappointments:
1. How many times did we see characters like Brienne, Jamie, Podrick, Gendry, Tormund and Sam surrounded by impossible odds, being overwhelmed by enemies, only to have a scene cut and 10 mins later they weren't overwhelmed, but still fighting? Didn't Jon see Sam under a pile of they dead, but left him anyway to take his shot at the Night King? Somehow Sam of all people is still alive? This plot armor is ridiculous.
2. I get that they were trying to give us the experience of the fog of war that the characters were going through, but between the moonless night and the blizzard, I couldn't tell the living from the dead in most scenes. Poor cinematography for such a climactic battle.
3. Jon and Dany (and their dragons) were all but useless in this fight. They spent most of it lost in the clouds when they should have been barbecuing thousands of wights as a time. It didn't have to be this difficult.
4. TERRIBLE PLAN to have the Dothraki charge the Army of the Dead.
5. TERRIBLE PLAN to have so many living people outside the walls of the castle, just waiting to be turned into soldiers of the Night King.
6. TERRIBLE PLAN to hide people in the crypts, knowing that the Night King can raise the dead.
7. TERRIBLE PLAN to have Bran in an open courtyard rather than some more defend-able location, like a Great Hall.
8. TERRIBLE PLAN on the Night King's part to not just roast Bran from above. He had plenty of opportunity, but did the B-villain move of trying to kill Bran personally.
9. TERRIBLE PLAN to not have burning pitch to throw over the castle walls.
10. TERRIBLE PLAN to not have a backup to the "let's roast the King with dragon fire," especially after Bran foretold that it may not work.
11. Wait, Arya gave the dagger to Sansa but then killed the Night King with the same dagger?
12. IS GHOST DEAD???
13. How exactly did Arya get past hundreds of wights and White Walkers to get a shot at the Night King in the first place?
14. That old trope of "kill the leader and the army collapses." UGH.
15. So dozens of no-names get killed in the crypt but not a single named character dies? Not even Gilly? I've waited so long for her death...
16. Missed opportunity to show that Jon has Targaryan fire-immunity (rising naked and unscathed from blue dragon fire would have been awesomeness).
16. Why did Melisandre kill herself? Wasn't that pointless? Even Davos would have let her live after all she did to save the living.
17. Now that we know that barely anyone died in this episode, re-watching the first two episodes of this season will make them look like a pointless waste.
18. What happened to Jon's dragon? It was so dark that this was unclear.
19. After building him up from the very first scene of Episode 1, it turns out that the Night King is just a mini-boss.
20. Both Jon and Dany, built up to be awesome leaders with important parts to play in saving the world, did little or nothing to save the world. All they did was come up with TERRIBLE PLANS that they then failed to execute, at the cost of thousands of lives of their followers. Their surviving followers should be much less impressed with them going forward.
Things I did like:
1. Melisandre was badass in this episode.
2. Tyrion and Sansa were awesome together.
3. Arya as the Princess Who Was Promised is something I hadn't considered. On second viewing of the entire show, her scenes will now have extra relevance.
4. That shot of the dragons above the clouds.
5. Unexpected death of Lyanna Mormont. But she was badass right to the end.
6. Bran's final words to Theon and Theon's heroic charge.
7. Sandor's fear of fire coming back into play.
8. Explaining at last why the Lord of Light kept bringing back Beric.
9. Cersei is more of a threat now that the Northern Army is decimated.
10. Trying to think of a reason why Varys survived, perhaps he will be the one to kill Qyburn. Hound kills the Mountain. Tyrion (or Jamie) kills Cersei. Leaving two more episodes for Dany to go Mad Queen (probably ordering the death of Sansa & Jon for treason) and for the survivors to unite against her.