TV Rundown: May 11 - 16: Tyrion Goes to Trial on 'Game of Thrones'

Performance Titan: Game of Thrones: One by one a precession of betrayers would backstab the noble Tyrion as he stood trial for the assassination of his monstrous nephew. As Tyrion was maligned, it gave Peter Dinklage an opportunity to once again dazzle in the role. As Tyrion rebuked his false accusers, Dinklage seethed with righteous anger; an emotional torrent of frustration, bitter sadness and rage.

As the series’ premier actor, Dinklage’s performance walked the balance of internal heartbreak and outward defiance. It was mesmerizing and as any episode focused on Tyrion is, it was spellbinding.

The A-List: The Blacklist: A spectacular season finale for a phenomenal freshman series. There were shocking deaths, revelations and riveting performances. James Spader capped his genius year on the series with a subtle and emotional scene with the delightful Megan Boone.

As Red attempted to extricate himself from Liz’s paternal suspicions, it was the painful longing that Spader expressed which, hinted ever so slightly, that Red was lying. It’s moments like that which helped this show transcend being a procedural and cement itself as a legitimate drama. 

Finale Fever: Dancing with the Stars: Between Amy Purdy’s electrifying table routine and Candace Cameron Bure’s “Nasty” jazz number; the dance floor was sweltering with the heat of incredible performances. This season’s race for the mirror ball has been equal parts fun and exciting. 

Most Robust Debut: Penny Dreadful: It was a strong premiere that’s tension was slightly dampened with one too many dramatic pauses. Overshadowing that small problem is the exceedingly brilliant Eva Green and Timothy Dalton, two actors that could make reading a phonebook, a compelling can’t-miss. 

Provocation of Thought: Fargo: While, Molly continued her exhaustive investigation of the unassuming Lester. Gus Grimly was paid a visit by his neighbor, who shared a grizzly story about a man who gave up everything to help others and the visual accompaniment left a searing impression. It was an extreme morality tale that drove its point across and offered an array of interpretations depending on a viewer’s stand point. 

Reigning Supreme: Reign: A magnificent season of the Renaissance-era drama, concluded with relationships hanging in the balance, ineffaceable character development, a surprising death and lives left in mortal danger. Yes, excitement for the next season is palatable.

The Predictable Diaries: The Vampire Diaries: At least it was consistent, a not-so-great finale to shepherd off an underwhelming season. After the previous week’s last minute twist offered an opportunity for the show to shake things up considerably, it relied on old habits to get out of it.

Death means nothing on this series. There are no stakes anymore. The good news is the best teacher in Mystic Falls returned from the dead. What the show never bothers to tell us is how they still have a body to return to. Click here for Season 5’s TV Report Card

You Win Some, You Lose Everything: Revenge: As the season closed down, the rivalry was reset as Victoria will likely take the crown of revenge seeker, next season. As tiring as it has been to watch Emily dominate Victoria it will be interesting to possibly see the Queen of the Hamptons bestow upon Emily, her well-earned karmic desserts.

As the series bid adieu to its worst character (the loathsome Aiden), it put one of its best in mortal jeopardy. If they were to succumb to their injuries, it would be the worst misstep of the entire series. 

Conrad and his portrayer Henry Czerny bring incomparable class and entertainment to the series. As bad as the show can get it has always had one thing going for it and that is Conrad and his dynamic with Victoria, courtesy of Czerny’s gloriously fiery chemistry with Madeline Stowe. Getting rid of half of the series’ biggest bright spot, wouldn’t leave much light left.

Shot through the Heart: Arrow: Not since Mr. Sheffield told Fran that he loved her and then took it back on “The Nanny” has a love confession been this cruel. Oliver’s convincing declaration of love for the endearing Felicity turned out to be a ploy to convince Slade to take her hostage.

It was a dastardly blow to a true heroine and those who actually thought the series had earned its first true shock of the season. As Felicity later probed as to the claim’s possible veracity she was coldly shutdown by an aloof Oliver. He’s done some brutal things this season but this emotional bait-and-switch took the cake. 

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