The kingdom of Westeros went through the equivalent of the Peloponnesian wars. In their suicidal rivalries, Athens and Sparta prepared Greece for the invasion of external forces, first Persian and then Roman. There is another more obvious reference: the Italian cities of the Middle Ages and the early Renaissance. Their rivalries paved the way for external ambitions, those of the Habsburgs on the one hand and those of the Valois on the other. But who, in the face of Westeros’ self-destruction, will play the role of Athens or Sparta, Florence, Milan or Genoa? There are no external candidates: we are closer in this respect to today’s rivalry between the United States and China.
But beyond a reference to Thucydides, can we perceive the final scenes of the series as a call to moderation and humanism? The enemy has become war itself. The instinct for evil provoked the unleashing of passions and the totalitarian and paradoxical will to impose good at all costs. The pattern evokes certain personalities of the French Revolution such as Robespierre: a female Robespierre with the supreme, yet not nuclear, weapon, the dragon’s "napalm". A Robespierre in petticoats that must be "neutralized" at all costs before it is too late.
If the process leading to the conclusion of the series is disappointing - as could be the accelerated version of a film of which all but the decisive scenes had been cut -, the conclusion itself is sophisticated and intellectually and visually satisfactory. Its objective is not to surprise the public at all costs with the most improbable scenario, but to pursue a reflection on the nature of power, in all of its eternity and mystery.