From the Maester’s Desk – Endgame: The Blood of the Dragon

707 - Ship - Daenerys, Jon 1

Through seven seasons, Game of Thrones has boasted a huge ensemble cast of memorable characters, and though many of them are fan favorites or integral to the plot, the most important of them all (the ones the “Song of Ice and Fire” surely alludes to) are Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen.

Both of them had humble beginnings (Dany even more so) and faced many dangers to reach the positions of power they hold now. Jon was even killed once, but he got better.

Dany was born in exile and was a refugee during most of her early years, and didn’t have many friends. She has been sold off, enslaved and betrayed, and many people have attempted to kill her. But instead of breaking, she has not only survived, but thrived in the face of adversity, gaining new and true allies and also the power to fight for her birthright, in the shape of a vast army and real, fire-breathing dragons.

Jon Snow lived comfortably in Winterfell, but resented his status as a bastard and knew that in normal circumstances it wouldn’t take him too far, so he joined the Night’s Watch, unaware that it was a dumping ground for killers and criminals of all kinds. He started as a simple steward, and was prisoner of the wildlings for a time, and though he has never asked for power, he’s a natural leader and soon became Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch and King in the North afterwards, once his watch was ended.

It’s been very exciting to watch these characters grow and bringe change with them, not without sacrifice and difficulties, but always aiming for the best. And now their biggest test is looming and the stakes couldn’t be any higher –it’s not just a matter of who’ll sit in the Iron Throne, or even the fate of Westeros alone. If the Night King wins, the whole world could be doomed.

So, based solely on what’s on the pages of the currently released five tomes of A Song of Ice and Fire, and the seven seasons of Game of Thrones (no season 8 spoilers!), I’ll make an educated guess of what’s coming up next for Dany and Jon in the final six episodes of our favorite fantasy saga.

Daenerys landing in Dragonstone

Daenerys Targaryen finally reached Westeros, but despite having the upper hand against Cersei in a beginning, she could not just lay waste to King’s Landing and burn the Red Keep with her dragons to cook her enemies. As her Hand said, that would only make her the queen of the ashes.

Since then, her advantage against Cersei has diminished somewhat: both Olenna Tyrell and the Sand Snakes are gone, Yara’s fleet was defeated and the Army of the Dead has claimed the life of Viserion. Meanwhile, Cersei still has Euron’s Iron Fleet, the support of the Iron Bank and soon the Golden Company will arrive to fight for her. And of course, the Night King obtained a brand new (and quite dangerous) mount.

I imagine that upon Dany’s arrival to Winterfell, the northern lords won’t be too happy to realize that their king has already given up his “crown” and declared for her. But as it happened with Torrhen Stark, known as “the King Who Knelt”, one look at the dragons should suffice to make them understand there wasn’t really a choice (or as Dany said about the choice the great masters of Meereen had: Live in her new world, or die with their old one). And most importantly, as Jon hopes, they’ll see her for who she is: not a foreign invader who’s coming to raze their lands, nor a “Mad Queen”, but someone who wants to build a better world and bring peace to a kingdom that has suffered and bled quite enough.

In the Season 7 finale, “The Dragon and the Wolf”, Bran seemed decided to tell Jon the truth about his parents. However, Jon being romantically involved with Daenerys changes everything: would it be a good idea to tell them right away? When so many things are on the line and tensions are so high? The new Three-Eyed Raven may have the subtlety of a sledgehammer, but Samwell is at Winterfell too, and he could restrain him until there’s a good moment to drop the bombshell news, provided both of them (and Gilly) make it to the end.

Should Bran opt not to wait, and reveal that Jon isn’t really a bastard, but the heir to the Iron Throne, and with a stronger claim than Daenerys at that, it could be a recipe for disaster. Or not. Unlike Daenerys and the many other claimants to the Throne who are already dead, he never had the ambition to rule over the Seven Kingdoms, and discovering that he’s really Aegon Targaryen won’t change that.

If anything, the truth will come as a relief: that he’s not a bastard, that his honorable adoptive father wasn’t unfaithful to his wife and that the mystery that haunted him for most of his life has been finally solved.

I think the incestuous aspect of the relationship is the largest cat that could come out of Bran’s bag of truth. Maybe that particular bit of information could be kept secret among a few people, but if it goes public, what to do then? Jaime and Cersei have gotten a lot of flak because of their no-so-secret relationship, with the former usually being the butt of jokes (one wonders how Robert Baratheon could be so blind to such an open secret). But it’s also true that not many people have reasons to love them, as opposed to Jon and Dany, who are surrounded by friends and people who respect them and are willing to fight for them.

Most Targaryen rulers were married to their relatives: brothers, sisters and such. Aegon the Conqueror himself was married to his two sisters, Rhaenys and Visenya. So, Daenerys being with Jon, or even marrying him eventually, wouldn’t be something unheard of when it comes to House Targaryen. If they prove to be good rulers, the common folk most certainly won’t mind who they choose to share their bed with.

But I’m getting a bit ahead of myself. Evidently, they can’t be rulers without getting to sit the Iron Throne first.

Wall - Eastwatch Breach 7x07 (18) Night King Viserion

But how to beat the Army of the Dead? The Night King in particular seems rather overpowered, after the show of force he demonstrated in the sixth episode of Season 7, “Beyond the Wall”. You’d think that from that moment onwards he’ll be carrying a big supply of ice spears, to take care of the other two dragons – but I have a feeling that either he won’t because of over-confidence (he has a dragon now, after all) or his aim won’t be as good as before, because the alternative is a fight that’ll be over very quickly (but to be fair, he did miss when trying to hit the fleeing Drogon. By very little, but that’s proof enough of him not being a flawless spear-thrower).

We don’t know much about the undead Viserion. Does he have the same weaknesses as the other wights, or will it take more work to bring him down? Unless our heroes have some scorpions ready with dragonglass bolts to shoot at the Night King, they’ll have to face him in the air. And that’s where things may get interesting:

I can already see comments about the predictability of Jon becoming a dragon rider, especially after the “Aegon” reveal hardly came as a surprise to most fans who have been discussing “R+L = J” for years, but I don’t think it should be a shock to anyone. It’d be a natural story beat –only that this time the Conqueror’s namesake won’t be riding the black dragon.

As discussed in my previous article, the fall of Winterfell is a very real possibility, if only because there’s no way the invasion of the undead is stopped just as it was getting started, after seven seasons of build-up.

But apart from secondary characters (and maybe one or two main ones), I don’t see the dragons dying at Winterfell. Purely from a story perspective, it’d be lame to dismount Jon that soon, and taking Drogon away from Daenerys before the final battle doesn’t feel right. If the dragons are destined to croak (and I sadly feel that’s indeed the case), it’ll have to be in the biggest battle, no doubt.

The one creature that has a bigger risk of dying early in the season is none other than Ghost. Our favorite albino pupper, as it was the case with the other direwolves, has been largely absent, to the point he was nowhere to be seen during Season 7 (according to Bryan Cogman, a Jon/Ghost goodbye scene was filmed for “Stormborn” but didn’t make it in).

Considering the budget for Season 8 will be largely devoted to the dragons and the big-scale battles, and how difficult and costly it is to bring a digital furry creature to life (one of the reasons they had to choose between Wun Wun and Ghost in “The Battle of the Bastards”), I don’t think the direwolf’s luck will be any different in the final season. I see a couple of scenarios: Ghost going out with a bang, Summer-style, to defend Jon (or his friends) or him remaining off-screen during most of the season (but making it alive to the end). I would admittedly go with the second option, which may be the boring one, but Ghost lives to tell (bark?) the tale.

Jon Ghost

Once the undead Viserion is dealt with, Daenerys probably being the one who kills him for a second time (it’s only tragically fitting that the Mother of Dragons is the one who puts her rogue “son” to sleep, this time for good) with the help of Drogon, the Night King will face off against Jon.

That one-on-one fight has been teased since Season 5, and Jon has already killed two White Walkers with Longclaw. There’s a good chance that at least one more Walker will be added to that count before the big fish himself.

Game of Thrones has a number of memorable fight scenes: Ned Stark vs. Jaime Lannister, Bronn vs. Ser Vardis Egan, Sandor Clegane vs. Beric Dondarrion, Brienne vs. Sandor Clegane, and of course, the Mountain vs. the Viper. And there’s a lot more! Each one has something unique about it: the scenario, the characters involved, the weapons they use, and what’s at stake.

Obviously I don’t know how the single combat between Jon and the Night King will play out (or if it will indeed happen, but that seems like a given), but I can imagine the pressure everyone involved with the show must be feeling to make it special. I’m assuming they’d fight on foot, but imagine if they fight atop a flying Viserion. It’s a very Hollywood-like thing, but one the show can afford to do now.

"The Ultimate Battle" by Rishiraj Singh Shekhawat.

“The Ultimate Battle” by Rishiraj Singh Shekhawat.

Will Jon survive the fight? Many things could happen. If he dies after defeating the Night King and therefore preventing the Long Night from happening, it could be interpreted that the reason the Lord of Light brought him back has been fulfilled. And this is where I think Beric Dondarrion will step in: In the books, he’s the one who brings Catelyn Stark back, by giving her the kiss of life. But since Lady Stoneheart was cut from the show, and Thoros died (with Sandor pointing out that Beric is now on his last life), the Lightning Lord’s purpose in the final season of the show seems clear to me.

Reviving Jon a second (and last) time could be considered by Beric as something just. Once the Army of the Dead has been defeated, he’ll be ready to rest, whereas Jon would still have most of his life ahead of him.

Only two things could prevent Jon’s second resurrection from happening, the way I see it. One is Jon’s own wishes, since he asked Melisandre to not bring him back again if he was killed during the Battle of the Bastards (though Melisandre did say she obeys her god, and not him). Beric is honorable enough to want to respect such a request, should Jon make it again, but same as with the Red Woman, I think he’d give preference to what his god wants.

The other is related to the dragons and magic. In the novels it is said that the birth of Dany’s dragons seems to have increased the magic/powers of the Red Priests, so their demise could weaken or make it disappear as a result. In a way, it would be similar to the end of The Lord of the Rings, with the start of the Fourth Age (the “Age of Men”) and the diminishing/disappearance of magic and mythical creatures (no more elves, the Ents awaiting their extinction, and no more istari/wizards like Gandalf, considering Radagast “lost the plot”. But as with many other things related with magic and religion, it’s all ambiguous at best and there are no clear rules set in stone.

If Jon does die, we can expect the Targaryen legacy to live on. This is an easy prediction to make, but the romantic moment they shared in the Season 7 finale will likely result in Daenerys getting pregnant. And, as the vengeful Mirri Maz Duur said, “Only death may pay for life”.
705 - Dragonstone - Drogon, Jon 1

I don’t have a prediction regarding Cersei, because I think other characters will be involved in that part of the plot. She and Dany are only enemies because the former wants to keep the throne and the latter is coming for it, but aside from the consequences of war, there’s not a personal conflict between the two of them, as opposed to the case of the Night King, who slain and reanimated one of Dany’s children.

And after it all is said and done, what’ll happen to the whole “breaking the wheel” business? After the Army of the Dead and Cersei / The Golden Company are defeated, it’ll be the dawn of a new era. Most noble houses have been entirely wiped out, some others could disappear during the battles of Season 8 or shortly afterwards, depending on which characters survive and in what condition they’re in. Apart from House Targaryen and Stark (and possibly Tyrion as the sole representative of House Lannister, if Jaime doesn’t make it), it’s going to be a very different outlook from the one that existed during Robert’s reign, before everything started to go downhill.

The smallfolk would now really be “the many”, and the nobles “the few”.

I guess Dany could just reward her allies with lands, new noble houses could take the place of the extinct ones, and the status quo would remain intact. But even if she proves to be an amazing queen of the Seven Kingdoms, the system that has brought so much suffering and bloodshed to the inhabitants of Westeros (especially the common folk), would still be in place, and I doubt she’ll be content with leaving things the way they have always been.

Maybe the change won’t be sudden and immediate, but the seeds for democracy could be planted during Dany’s reign. Placing limits on the power of whoever sits the Iron Throne with the development of a parliament. After what happened with the Mad King, surely people will want to keep future descendants of House Targaryen in check.

Perhaps monarchy won’t go away entirely, unless eventually it happens by force: a king or queen is overthrown and a stable democracy is established instead. With time, there could be elections and soon the westerosi would be able to choose their own leaders. It’s not a perfect system, as our real life world can attest to, but it’s a better one than allowing a single person to hold absolute power.

Aegon the Conqueror changed the course of history when he landed on Westeros, and now Daenerys Stormborn and Aegon will do it once again. Fire cannot kill a dragon, and ice won’t be able to do it either.

98 responses

Jump to (and Always Support) the Bottom

    1. I am not persuaded that Beric is going to resurrect anyone. I think Beric is toast. He is, however, the bearer of the Flaming MacGuffin; and picking it up when Beric falls is going to be transformational to the picker-upper. Could be Jon, but I’m on Team Sandor for this particular detail.

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    2. Well summed up, Morgoth, and your questions are valid. As to the last one, what will be the geographical governmental divisions? Will Westeros be one, three, or seven kingdoms? I think three, because of the distances, the distinctiions between people from the North, Middle, and South (especially Dorne). If it’s one kingdom, then the new rulers will have to ensure that each region has some autonomy and a satisfactory share in central decision-making. If not, centrifugal force will foment ill-feeling and potentially revolutionary movements.

      As to socio-political changes, there will be few highborns standing, but commoners will be decimated too. With a considerably reduced population, people will probably naturally band together and be more cooperative to survive and get the rebuilding done. So channels of communication will be open and that should lead to respect. People of ability will have a chance to see it acknowledged and used. It’s unrealistic for us to expect “Voila! Let’s make a democracy!” because there’s no viable proto-democracy. There are cases, however, of chieftain elections–Kingsmoot, Nights Watch for example–and councils. So my guess is at the lower level, chiefs will be chosen by people, and there will be more representation on the Small Council. Perhaps there will be a Great Council too, which approaches being a proto-parliament. If Jon and/or Dany sit the throne, they are likely to be open to this. And Jon but especially Dany, may ensure that females participate and have their voices heard. One thing J&D may also do, especially if BoatBaby is a girl, is establish gender-blind primogeniture, as in Dorne.

      None of that will happen quickly. Tyrion told Dany major change might not happen in her lifetime. But one can hope that the aftermath of continent-wide, epochal wars, that the rulers and everyone with half-decent comprehension will know that change has to come. And maybe J&D will set about nudging in the right direction.

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    3. Thanks for the very interesting article, Morgoth. A bit bus tonight so I’ll elaborate my thoughts about it tomorrow, but first … Live From New York, It’s HODOR!!!!

      😉

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    4. I’ll never understand this belief that Jon’s true parentage will be like water off a duck’s back to him. How do people normally react to the fact that they’ve been living a lie their entire lives and the people closest to them are not who they thought they were?

      I think it would be a terrible shame if the show just glosses over the fallout from the most significant revelation on the show since Ned completed his remedial class in genetics.

      Potentially the most important consequence of the revelation is a potential shift in the power dynamics between Jon and Dany.

      Jon’s sole focus is on defending his family and the Seven Kingdoms from the Army of the Dead. Last season he felt compelled to approach Dany for her assistance in that crusade and ultimately bent the knee to ensure her compliance.

      If it’s revealed that he has a claim to the Iron Throne, his ability to rally the Seven Kingdoms to his cause in his own right, theoretically even including Cersei, is increased markedly.

      If he were to become a dragon rider too and if Dany’s army was to take substantial losses, then the current power imbalance between she and Jon could be eradicated entirely.

      If there are any two characters left on the show between whom there is surely some potential major drama still to be played out (aside from Cersei and, well, everybody), it’s Jon and Dany.

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    5. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:
      I’ll never understand this belief that Jon’s true parentage will be like water off a duck’s back to him. How do people normally react to the fact that they’ve been living a lie their entire lives and the people closest to them are not who they thought they were?

      I think it would be a terrible shame if the show just glosses over the fallout from the most significant revelation on the show since Ned completed his remedial class in genetics.

      Potentially the most important consequence of the revelation is a potential shift in the power dynamics between Jon and Dany.

      Jon’s sole focus is on defending his family and the Seven Kingdoms from the Army of the Dead. Last season he felt compelled to approach Dany for her assistance in that crusade and ultimately bent the knee to ensure her compliance.

      If it’s revealed that he has a claim to the Iron Throne, his ability to rally the Seven Kingdoms to his cause in his own right, theoretically even including Cersei, is increased markedly.

      If he were to become a dragon rider too and if Dany’s army was to take substantial losses, then the current power imbalance between she and Jon could be eradicated entirely.

      If there are any two characters left on the show between whom there is surely some potential major drama still to be played out (aside from Cersei and, well, everybody), it’s Jon and Dany.

      You are dying for that conflict.

      Take one of Dany’s dragons and have her army wiped out. You would be in nerd heaven. And of course he would somehow rally the seven kingdoms to his cause because people will believe Bran

      Although its not really clear Jon bent the knee to ensure her compliance.

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    6. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:

      ~snip

      If it’s revealed that he has a claim to the Iron Throne, his ability to rally the Seven Kingdoms to his cause in his own right, theoretically even including Cersei, is increased markedly.

      If he were to become a dragon rider too and if Dany’s army was to take substantial losses, then the current power imbalance between she and Jon could be eradicated entirely.

      If there are any two characters left on the show between whom there is surely some potential major drama still to be played out (aside from Cersei and, well, everybody), it’s Jon and Dany.

      I don’t see how it does. I haven’t seen anything on the show that suggests there’s an appetite to follow the person with the best claim to the throne. And your scenario suggests that this claim would be believed and seen as legitimate. If anything, it seems as if this revelation is likelier to hurt his ability of rallying others.

      I suppose so, but that assumes that the other armies wouldn’t take heavy losses. I’m also not sure how likely it is for Jon to become a dragon rider; we’ve seen that D&D love to have Jon swinging his sword around.

      In general, I agree with your last point (Jon/Dany drama), although I’m not sure I see it playing out in the same way as you.

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    7. The huge thing you leave out is the Three Eyed Raven. All of the prophesies and the earlier Three Eyed Raven say that it is Bran who has the key role in defeating the Knight King and the undead. That is the whole reason he had to go north to meet and become the Three Eyed Raven. I see no validity in a season 8 sequence that doesn’t address the almost certainly critical role of Bran. Also don’t ignore the predictions we have seen. Twice we have seen a roofless room containing an Iron Throne onto which snow is falling. In one of Bran’s early visions we also see the shadow of a dragon as it flies over King’s landing. These things were not included by chance.

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    8. House Monty:
      ~snip
      Although its not really clear Jon bent the knee to ensure her compliance.

      Yeah I’m pretty sure Dany had already given him her word prior to Jon bending the knee.

      Besides,

      we have three separate documents that leaked (Lads’ script page and the other two outlines from the hackers) and none of them suggest that Jon bent the knee for “compliance”.

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    9. Jay Targ: Yeah I’m pretty sure Dany had already given him her word prior to Jon bending the knee.

      Besides,

      Yup. That is what i remember too.

      To say he bent the knee for compliance seems almost as bad as the undercover Jon theories

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    10. I’ve thought a bit about Beric’s role in all of this, and I have my doubts that Beric will give the kiss to anyone. Especially Jon. If Jon dies, I don’t think he’ll come back if for no other reason that they would have to go through the whole thing of making us grieve in thinking he’s dead, and then for him to get resurrected again. And we’ve been through that emotional rollercoaster already, so it would feel redundant. Furthermore, Jon told Mel not to bring him back should he fall in 6×09, which I took as a bit of foreshadowing.

      If Beric does give the kiss to anyone, the only one that really comes to mind for me is The Hound, who will then pick up his flaming sword in a brilliant moment of heroic glory!

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    11. “The one creature that has a bigger risk of dying early in the season is none other than Ghost. Our favorite albino pupper, as it was the case with the other direwolves, has been largely absent, to the point he was nowhere to be seen during Season 7 (according to Bryan Cogman, a Jon/Ghost goodbye scene was filmed for “Stormborn” but didn’t make it in).
      ………………………………

      That would really suck. And they’d probably give Ghost a Blackfish-style offscreen death, and have some characters report it second-hand, after the fact.
      If direwolves were a budget problem, they could’ve done a crowd-founding project. Every GoT fan I know would’ve gladly chipped in $5 -$10 to see Ghost again last season.

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    12. I think that the re-appearance of the Night King is connected to the increase in magic caused by the birth of Dragons.
      The death of the NK will require the death of the Dragons.
      That may also require the death of Danny as well.

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    13. “Most Targaryen rulers were married to their relatives: brothers, sisters and such. Aegon the Conqueror himself was married to his two sisters, Rhaenys and Visenya.”
      ……………………

      For a second there I thought this was insinuating a Jon + Sansa & Arya marriage, setting off a perpetual fanwar between Jonsa partisans and J+A Originalists.

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    14. Colin Armfield,

      We dont know surely if Danny will die at all in the end..that is questionable..Many fans believes this but there might be something else..It will be unexpected and surprisingly if she survives and someone else dies in her place..Maybe her fav dragon dies in her place and she lives [death pays for life]..and in the end she accepts that she can live without magic in her life[Targaryens had existed and after the death of their dragons]..Also the pregnancy /child increases the possibilities of her survival

      Ten Bears:
      “Most Targaryen rulers were married to their relatives: brothers, sisters and such. Aegon the Conqueror himself was married to his two sisters, Rhaenys and Visenya.”
      ……………………

      For a second there I thought this was insinuating a Jon + Sansa & Arya marriage, setting off a perpetual fanwar between Jonsa partisans and J+A Originalists.

      Jonsa or Jonarya fans just they like to drink Shade of the Evening …that makes them having illusions and dreams ..The only pairings i see there in S8 is Jonerys,Tyrionsa ,Euroncei ,Jaimenne and Gendrya

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    15. One of the problems that could be on track for Jon is he did not bend the knee for compliance. He bent it out of sheer emotion and probably a bit of lust. He put no thought into a hugely momentous decision. Didn’t speak to Davos, his king’s councilman at hand, never mind sending a raven to Sansa, his councilwoman. He has proved both his biological father’s and his foster father’s son. Rhaegar put no thought to the consequences of running off with Lyanna past his obsession with the prophecy. Ned was honorable to a deadly fault.

      D&D went out of their way to make Jon and Dany’s merger as creepy as possible with Bran’s voice over and Tyrion’s look of doom. And Jon’s little “you’re a Stark and a Greyjoy” foreshadowing pep talk to Theon. No way they hold off on dropping the R+L=J bombshell at least to the immediately affected. It will be the interpersonal relationship engine of the season.

      If the North feels like there was a never a choice, it won’t endear Dany to them. They’re so done playing with others. It only brings them misery. Nor will that decision of hers to roast the Tarleys alive help. Too close to home. Randall & Dickon, Brandon and Rickard. The names even. Yeah, that was one time she really should’ve listened to Tyrion.

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    16. Thanks for the fantastic analysis Morgoth! One of my favourite things reading ADwD was how Jon’s & Dany’s POVs were nearly back to back throughout the book. Obviously, intentionally done by GRRM to see the parallel journeys between the two characters.

      I also spent some time thinking about the end in terms of maintaining a monarchy or creating something new. I personally believe that in order to truly break the wheel, the Iron Throne should not exist, as it has become a symbol of greed, power, and oppression as it “crushes those on the ground” as Dany put it. I do hope the end results in some kind gradual dismantling of an absolute monarchy, which would also be one final way GRRM could subvert common fantasy tropes.

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    17. NinaD,

      Randyl and Dickon decided to die themselves because they wanted that and because of their own decisions[betray their own siblings and siding with Cercei] Tyrion convinced them to bend the knee and they refused[they would have been still alive if they dont] ..Danny just passes the sentence ..Its was at a 90% their fault that got die and that is fair.

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    18. I agree with a lot of what you wrote here but it’s interesting for me you don’t discuss the possibility of Dany dying. For me Jon is the one more likely to survive and rule of the two simply because he didn’t want it.

      Fully agree he will face off with the Nights King too that seems one of the most predictable elements to the story from a very early stage.

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    19. NinaD:

      If the North feels like there was a never a choice, it won’t endear Dany to them. They’re so done playing with others. It only brings them misery. Nor will that decision of hers to roast the Tarleys alive help. Too close to home. Randall & Dickon, Brandon and Rickard. The names even. Yeah, that was one time she really should’ve listened to Tyrion.

      You do realize that Dany is going North to save their asses from an impending existential threat right?

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    20. They will accept Danny because Jon Snow (King of the North who’s name is Stark) speaks for her.
      When they find out that Jon is a Targaryon then they will have different thoughts.
      Of course by then the NK may have killed most of them anyway.

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    21. Colin Armfield,

      Very true. Maybe the alternate scenario would be the Night King becoming the true hero who abolishes/destroys the monarchy& runs under a NK/Viserion ticket. Nk: oh look, everyone’s dead! Looks like we win by default. 😜

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    22. House Monty,

      Desperate for drama and conflict in Game of Thrones? How outrageous!

      If the conclusion of this story just comes down to a question of who lives and who dies before the good guys inevitably prevail, then I may as well have been watching that Walking Dead trash.

      The biggest revelation since the revelation that set this entire story in motion is just gonna be a damp squib with no disruptive consequences? It will be a “relief” to Jon; nobody in the Seven Kingdoms will care; Dany won’t care; and it won’t drive the story in any new direction? No thanks!

      As for bending the knee, if he didn’t do it to secure her alliance in the fight against the White Walkers then it’d officially be the second dumbest thing the producers have had Jon do after the wight hunt.

      Jon knows his people don’t want a southern ruler, let alone a Targaryen.
      He knows they don’t entirely buy his claims about the Army of the Dead.
      He knows his beloved siblings, two of whom he hasn’t seen in years and all of whom he would consider vulnerable (as far as he’s aware), are alone at the castle they only just reclaimed from a band of treacherous, murderous bannermen.
      He knows that he himself was murdered for allying with the wrong people despite the complaints of those he commanded, and he didn’t see it coming.
      Oh, and at this point Littlefinger is still alive.

      But we’re supposed to accept that he just went “Meh… what could go wrong?” and risked revolt even though he didn’t have to, because he thinks Daenerys is simply so worthy of ruling over he and his people?

      Forgive my dubiousness.

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    23. Jay Targ,

      I only really addressed the dragon rider issue because it was suggested in the article. I have no idea if they will be going down that route. But if so, it would go some way to offsetting the current power imbalance.

      As for the armies, Dany’s forces make up the bulk of the allies currently en route to face down the Army of the Dead, so it’s pretty much inevitable that her forces will initially suffer greater losses than the Westerosi, especially considering that they will be facing unfamiliar conditions.

      If our allies engage in conflict with the Army of the Dead in the North, then we know that they will suffer losses, while the remaining Lannisters, the Reach, the Stormlands, the Dornish, the Iron Islands, King’s Landing / the Crownlands and perhaps the Riverlands would initially remain unscathed.

      So Dany’s military advantage over the Westerosi could be eroded somewhat, if not entirely.

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    24. Colin Armfield:
      I think that the re-appearance of the Night King is connected to the increase in magic caused by the birth of Dragons.
      The death of the NK will require the death of the Dragons.
      That may also require the death of Danny as well.

      The white walkers returned before the dragons did though

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    25. And they’ve been collecting Craster babies for a while now, so I don’t think the ww came back just because the dragons did.

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    26. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:
      House Monty,

      Desperate for drama and conflict in Game of Thrones? How outrageous!

      If the conclusion of this story just comes down to a question of who lives and who dies before the good guys inevitably prevail, then I may as well have been watching that Walking Dead trash.

      The biggest revelation since the revelation that set this entire story in motion is just gonna be a damp squib with no disruptive consequences? It will be a “relief” to Jon; nobody in the Seven Kingdoms will care; Dany won’t care; and it won’t drive the story in any new direction? No thanks!

      As for bending the knee, if he didn’t do it to secure her alliance in the fight against the White Walkers then it’d officially be the second dumbest thing the producers have had Jon do after the wight hunt.

      Jon knows his people don’t want a southern ruler, let alone a Targaryen.
      He knows they don’t entirely buy his claims about the Army of the Dead.
      He knows his beloved siblings, two of whom he hasn’t seen in years and all of whom he would consider vulnerable (as far as he’s aware), are alone at the castle they only just reclaimed from a band of treacherous, murderous bannermen.
      He knows that he himself was murdered for allying with the wrong people despite the complaints of those he commanded, and he didn’t see it coming.
      Oh, and at this point Littlefinger is still alive.

      But we’re supposed to accept that he just went “Meh… what could go wrong?” and risked revolt even though he didn’t have to, because he thinks Daenerys is simply so worthy of ruling over he and his people?

      Forgive my dubiousness.

      That is clearly what the scene implied and what every scene leading up to that implied. And just in case it was not spelled out for you enough you can read the original outlines which more dirrectly comment on their thoughts.

      She already offered the alliance with no strings attached. He did not bend the knee to secure an alliance. His whole goal for the season was getting Cersei and Dany to join him in the fight against the AOtD. By bending the knee to Dany he made that more difficult. Your interpretation is just competley at odds with the actual scenes, dialogue and what we know about the characters.

      And that is the key thing here. There is def going to be conflict from this revelation. Every scene has conflict. No conflict. No story.

      But the question is what type of conflict. You are envisioning something huge but i think your are getting their by really failing to understand what was actually shown to us on screen about how they feel about each other.

      And the armies of the north, vale and ironborn will be up there dying in the same proportion. The only person that woll benefit from the fighting up north is going to be Cersei

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    27. I love reading well thought out predictions but I also like finding the bias in the prediction. In your good essay, I notice that nowhere do you discuss Dany dying, esp instead of Jon. Dany, the one who longs for the house with the red door, who desires to be with Drogo again, who wishes for her infant son – she doesn’t die? If all the rumors are to be believed, Dany does carry a child and brings it to term. Her death would pay for that life.
      So what does Jon’s second life pay for? The death of the NK.

      Note: But I do like your idea about Beric’s sword going to Jon. Seems perfect to me.

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    28. Charles,

      Great article!! And I agree w you Charles. While the hero with a thousand faces archetype here is clearly Jon- & perhaps also Dany- ( this has been evident since the opening book and episode – and I still think it’s Jon in spite of all the mirroring w Dany) , Bran is very , very important. I think Bran’s birth stirred the the night king & the walkers. They are intertwined. It’s Grrms last big twist I think. Walkers returned before the dragons . I’m not convinced the showrunnèrs will handle this twist as well as grmm might, if he ever finishes the last books.

      I do feel that ultimately it will be jon, reluctantly and yes after falling again and Beric giving his life , who sits on the throne after returning to the world, sharing his “boons” / understanding for what its worth. Classic joseph Campbell . Dany & Jon’s journey mirror each other hugely but I do feel that the big secret of Jon’s parentage is ultimately there for some narrative payoff . Bran and the NK are also paired in some way. Watch out for the VS dagger …!!!! Great thoughtful article – thanks!!

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    29. Re Jon being Targaryen, they have two choices: Jon and Dany keep the secret that Jon is Targaryen, or they hide the fact that Jon is her child’s father. I’m guessing they’ll choose the former. I don’t see Jon wanting his child to grow up without knowing who he is and passed off as someone else’s child. While I think Bran will definitely tell Jon the truth, I’m not so sure Jon will share it with Dany, which will take the choice of how to handle it out of her hands.

      I think there’ll be an aerial dragon battle. It’s the only dragon related thing we haven’t seen yet. Which makes me wonder if Dany will be on dragonback. It would be awesome if she goes into battle while pregnant. I wonder too if she’ll be like Karsi at Hardhome who couldn’t fight the wight children. But then, Dany will be furious that the Night King has turned her baby into a slave. A dragon is not a slave, she said and she might be able to ‘kill’ Viserion out of mercy.

      As for Jon riding a dragon, he’s been so physical the whole series, whereas riding a dragon is sort of passive… I’m guessing it won’t happen.

      And what about Bran? If Jon or Dany kills the Night King then where does Bran come into all this?

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    30. I don’t think it’s too far out there to think that Beric could give his life to bring Jon back. Beric is still around for a purpose, and I believe that purpose is more useful than to just be another sword wielder.

      I’m somewhat on board with the idea that Beric could give his life for Jon to come back via Melisandre, as I think Jon is ultimately the one to bring down the NK, with the help of Bran, Dany, and most likely a few others. I’m not sold on this idea yet, but it’s got me thinking about it’s possibilities.

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    31. Anon,

      I wonder if Bran could warg into Rhaegal. I’m not so sure, but it seems odd that Rhaegal really has nothing to distinguish him/herself from the other two dragons at this point. Viserion is the NK’s mount while Drogon is Dany’s mount. Where does Rhaegal fit into all this?

      I agree with you that Jon is much more useful fighting on the ground with his sword skills than he would be in the air, so I personally don’t believe that he will be using Rhaegal. I suppose Tyrion could, but that would be too out of left field at this point. This leaves me with the idea that Bran might warg into Rhaegal, but no idea if it’ll happen or not.

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    32. NinaD:

      If the North feels like there was a never a choice, it won’t endear Dany to them. They’re so done playing with others. It only brings them misery. Nor will that decision of hers to roast the Tarleys alive help. Too close to home. Randall & Dickon, Brandon and Rickard. The names even. Yeah, that was one time she really should’ve listened to Tyrion.

      Wow, I hadn’t picked up on the echoic naming! Thanks. That parallel surely cannot be unintentional on the author’s part.

      I don’t know how much time we have left in the show for recalcitrant Northern vassals, though. Maybe just some fuel for Jon fretting and brooding.

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    33. Y’all know how everything fell away for Edmure once Jaime brought up his infant son? I think the same will happen to Jon. He’ll forget about his bitterness and do what’s necessary to protect his child. He’ll let go of his claim to the throne and all the loss and lies, if need be.

      Dany said she WOULD fight for the North if Jon bent the knee. This is after he told her that he COULDN’T defeat the Night King without her army and dragons. Then after Jon saw her in action beyond the wall – just Dany and her three dragons – he knew she was the answer to saving the North. Bending the knee was the most responsible thing to do.

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    34. NinaD: Nor will that decision of hers to roast the Tarleys alive help. Too close to home. Randall & Dickon, Brandon and Rickard. The names even. Yeah, that was one time she really should’ve listened to Tyrion.

      I don’t see why the North would care about the Tarley’s, seeing as though they weren’t part of the North to begin with, but maybe I’m missing something.

      I see the parallels a little bit, but not much. The names don’t really sound the same and their situations for being burned/killed weren’t very similar either. Generally speaking, the Starks were set up, and were killed without having any say. Randyll and Dickon were given a clear choice. Again, maybe I’m missing something, but the two seem rather different to me.

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    35. Jon will die after destroy NK (complete the mission he is destineted), Dany will leave Westeros and rebuilt Valyria and Sansa will be the “queen”, elected by vote, of a broken kingdom. She will shine in the battle with her political decisions.

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    36. Mr Derp:
      Anon,

      I wonder if Bran could warg into Rhaegal.I’m not so sure, but it seems odd that Rhaegal really has nothing to distinguish him/herself from the other two dragons at this point.Viserion is the NK’s mount while Drogon is Dany’s mount.Where does Rhaegal fit into all this?

      I agree with you that Jon is much more useful fighting on the ground with his sword skills than he would be in the air, so I personally don’t believe that he will be using Rhaegal.I suppose Tyrion could, but that would be too out of left field at this point.This leaves me with the idea that Bran might warg into Rhaegal, but no idea if it’ll happen or not.

      I agree. That’s right up there at the top of possibilities. The TER told Bran that he would fly and I don’t think he meant that Bran would do it by warging crows. And Bran has yet to put his skills into real action warging a person and a huge beast, like a dragon.

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    37. My theory is that Tyrion will be the other dragon rider. Why else would they have given him that wonderful scene with the dragons? Perhaps Jon will get thrown off (but not hard enough for him not to fight with his sword!) and Tyrion will jump up in the heat of battle, like Dany did in Mereen.

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    38. Roberta Baratheon,

      It would feel kind of random to me at this point if Tyrion ends up riding Rhaegal, but I can’t rule it out as being impossible. Perhaps Bran can return the favor and come up with a saddle system so Tyrion can ride Rhaegal, but I just have a hard time envisioning this. Tyrion has fought in battles, but he made it out alive because of luck more than anything. Didn’t he get knocked unconscious more than once? I doubt he’d be an ideal choice to ride a dragon into combat. Can you imagine the look on Dany’s face if Tyrion asks to ride Rhaegal into combat?

      I think Tyrion already had his moment with the dragons when he released them from their chains in season 6. I envision that Tyrion will either be connected with Sam and Bran in season 8, or with his brother Jaime, but I would assume the former.

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    39. House Monty: She already offered the alliance with no strings attached. He did not bend the knee to secure an alliance. His whole goal for the season was getting Cersei and Dany to join him in the fight against the AOtD. By bending the knee to Dany he made that more difficult. Your interpretation is just competley at odds with the actual scenes, dialogue and what we know about the characters.

      Actually, no. His primary goal was to get Dany to join him in the fight against the White Walkers. If getting Cersei on-board was a priority then he would’ve been making overtures towards her before Dany even showed up. And Sansa had already warned him that Cersei was as big a threat to them as the White Walkers.

      Jon’s main focus was to get Dany and her dragons on board, which is why he was urging her to forget about Cersei and the Iron Throne even before the prospect of bringing Cersei to the table was suggested.

      The prospect of achieving an armistice was only suggested as a means to cease hostilities to allow Dany to join Jon. He was all ready to head back north without even approaching Cersei until Tyrion suggested the wight hunt.

      Jon: “I need to go home.”
      Dany: “You said you don’t have enough men.”
      Jon: “We’ll fight with the men we have. Unless you’ll join us.”
      Dany: “And give the country to Cersei. As soon as I march away, she marches in.”
      Tyrion: “Perhaps not…”

      So, frankly, you’re only reinforcing my point of view.

      Jon bent the knee to Dany, risking revolt in The North and at risk of sabotaging his chances of bringing Cersei into the fold, which he then doubled down on at the Dragonpit by refusing to lie about having bent the knee.

      Either that was an idiotic and unnecessary move, which needlessly hamstrung his chances of achieving his further goals (which you freely admit); made simply because he suddenly decided that Dany is worthy of ruling, above all other considerations.

      Or it was a calculated decision, made to rubber stamp Dany’s pledge to fight for The North and achieve what had been his primary goal all along: to ensure the support of Dany and her dragons.

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    40. Mr Derp: The names don’t really sound the same and their situations for being burned/killed weren’t very similar either.

      Yeah, only 6 of the 8 syllables in their names are practically identical. 😉

      Not saying the Northerners will care, but the parallel is blatant.

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    41. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      “Actually, no. His primary goal was to get Dany to join him in the fight against the White Walkers. If getting Cersei on-board was a priority then he would’ve been making overtures towards her before Dany even showed up. And Sansa had already warned him that Cersei was as big a threat to them as the White Walkers.”

      the original outline makes this crystal clear. its more just subtext in the final version.

      “Either that was an idiotic and unnecessary move, which needlessly hamstrung his chances of achieving his further goals (which you freely admit); made simply because he suddenly decided that Dany is worthy of ruling, above all other considerations.

      Or it was a calculated decision, made to rubber stamp Dany’s pledge to fight for The North and achieve what had been his primary goal all along: to ensure the support of Dany and her dragons.”

      There is zero evidence it was a calculated decision. Zero. Not in the original outline for the seasons that lay out the character psychology and motivations in an on the nose manner. Not in the fact that in 703 when he told her he would not kneel because he did not even know her and then he justifies bending the knee to her by getting to know her and that once everyone else gets to know her they will be fine with it.

      I mean come on dude. Their freaking love music is playing during the scene !!!

      If that does not make it 100% perfectly obvious what is going on than only D&D themselves telling you how to interpret the scene could be more clear.

      And of course in the inside the episode they tell you how you should be interpreting the scene by talking about the romantic nature of it.

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    42. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      Lol, if we’re going by syllable count and similar sounding names to draw connections then I suppose Varys and Viserys are one in the same. Same with Bran and Bronn, and maybe even Missandei and Melisandre.

      Kidding aside, I get the parallels, but I don’t see these two different situations playing out the same at all and that’s my point.

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    43. House Monty,

      So if he bent the knee, risking revolt in The North and potentially sabotaging the chance of an alliance with Cersei, because he’s suddenly just so irrepressibly in love with Dany, then how does that dispute my original point that “…if he didn’t do it to secure her alliance in the fight against the White Walkers then it’d officially be the second dumbest thing the producers have had Jon do after the wight hunt.”?

      All you’ve done is suggest that his motives for bending the knee were even more irrational and reckless than I originally suggested.

      I believe there is more to Jon’s decisions in Season 7 and I hope that we see some fallout from them in Season 8. Otherwise Jon’s character and the writing on this show have been irreparably compromised.

      You disagree. Cool. Discussion over, I guess.

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    44. House Monty:
      Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      There is zero evidence it was a calculated decision. Zero. Not in the original outline for the seasons that lay out the character psychology and motivations in an on the nose manner. Not in the fact that in 703 when he told her he would not kneel because he did not even know her and then he justifies bending the knee to her by getting to know her and that once everyone else gets to know her they will be fine with it.

      I mean come on dude. Their freaking love music is playing during the scene !!!

      Yeah I agree, I think it was pretty clear.

      The Lads script pages says “Jon sees what so many have seen over … (unclear due to watermark) a force within Dany that enables her to conquer everything in her path.” It later says that “he is blindsided by the words that come out from his mouth, even as he speaks”, clearly showing that he it’s not a calculated decision.

      Then from the outline that leaked from April 2016
      “Dany is shocked and amazed. What about the Northerners? How will they take it? Jon thinks they’ll understand. The ones who know him know he never really wanted to be king anyway. And the rest of them will come to see Dany for what she is: someone from the edge of the world, just like them. Someone who could have let them all die, but didn’t.”

      Then in the leaked script summary
      “Jon sees her beauty, strength, grief and pain and all push him to the realization that he loves her and he’s thrown by the realization. Her fingers move on his hand and she likes the way it feels. A look between them acknowledges what almost just happened, she stares at him a moment longer, stands and leaves the cabin.” Again suggesting it’s more than some calculated decision.

      There doesn’t seem to be much room for other interpretations..

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    45. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:
      House Monty,

      I believe there is more to Jon’s decisions in Season 7 and I hope that we see some fallout from them in Season 8. Otherwise Jon’s character and the writing on this show have been irreparably compromised.

      Jon’s character has been compromised, either for the sake of other characters or for the sake of plot, since season 6 episode 4. It’s nothing new.
      There was nothing more to Jon’s decision. He did it because Dany pledging to fight the Night King convinced him that she would be the right kind of ruler who would put the welfare of the people first. That, along with his loooove and the fact that he doesn’t want to rule influenced his decision.
      The writing for his character the past 2 seasons has actually convinced me that he will not be ruling at the end, which probably means he will either end up as Queen Daenerys’ royal consort or he will die.

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    46. Mr Derp,

      There is just something that feels.. “off” to me about Beric raising Jon, or for Jon being resurrected at all so that he can be king if he dies. It seems rather selfish doesn’t it? First of all, Jon has expressed that he has little interest in ruling, and secondly that he does not want to be brought back again if he dies. It must be incredibly traumatic to go through that, and so for people to insist he does so he can rule them is selfish.

      It also doesn’t feel right for Mel to bring him back again, because the Lord of Light has no interest in politics or who sits on the IT. Jon was brought back because no one else but him would be able to lead people against the NK and the WW. That’s really his purpose. So for me, if he is to be king at the end he won’t die, and if he dies he stays dead. That’s how I see it.

      It also kind of takes the tension away if we just expect him to be rezzed if he dies. And that goes for resurrection in general. Unless there is a very good reason and purpose behind it, it’s kind of cheap. I would actually be okay if there were no more resurrections in the show and that Beric and Jon ended up being the only ones. But Beric having been brought back as many times as he has surely means something, so.. it’s hard to say. I do think there could be another purpose to Beric besides reviving one of our dead heroes, but what I really don’t know.

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    47. Enharmony1625,

      I hear what you’re saying, but my comment about the possibility of Jon being resurrected through Mel/Beric had nothing to do with being king or ruling at all. I simply stated that I could see Jon being brought back to life that way, but I’m certainly not subscribing to it happening 100% at all.

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    48. Mr Derp,

      Perhaps the dragons returned because the White Walkers did. The Targaryens coming to Dragonstone before the conquest was not to rule but to survive the doom. It is entirely possible that the WW were awoken then and having building in strength since Aegon the Conqueror landed at the Blackwater.

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    49. I have a sneaking suspicion that the title of Ice and Fire was devised when Jon and Arya were the endgame and he’s sort of trying to retrofit it. Jon Snow either is Ice and Fire, in that his parents are Targaryen and Stark or the reveal of Jon as a Targaryen made his union with Arya Ice and Fire. It does not work with Dany.

      I’m going to bet Weirwood can kill a dragon. Obsidian is frozen fire, it kills Ice. Weirwood is white with red leaves, it will kill dragons. There is a hint of this in the books with Brandon Snow.

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    50. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      If the conclusion of this story just comes down to a question of who lives and who dies before the good guys inevitably prevail, then I may as well have been watching that Walking Dead trash…”
      ————-
      You forgot to mention who marries whom, who’s pregnant with whose baby, and who’s king and who’s queen. 😁

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    51. Ten Bears,

      and who’s going to be valonqar candidate number 1,000

      And just think, only 1 more year to go! Huzzah!

      Oh, and my personal favorite…which set of leaks have been proven “true” based on absolutely nothing.

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    52. ghost of winterfell,

      Jon’s characterisation has certainly gone awry at times over the last few seasons. Sansa, Tyrion, Davos, Lyanna Mormont… you name it… they’ve all been elevated by compromising Jon’s character at times. But, as frustrating as it was, these instances were generally able to be rationalised away or relatively trivial.

      But Jon giving up his kingdom because he’s suddenly so in love with Dany, or even because she’d suddenly proven that she could be a good ruler, is just sabotage of the highest order in the context of this show, all Jon’s been through and the circumstances he’s in.

      This is the same guy who chose to honour his Night’s Watch oath rather than ride off to help his family.
      The same guy who abandoned the woman he loved out of a sense of duty to his people.
      The same guy whose brother was murdered by his own men due to breaking an oath, “losing” his kingdom and putting love ahead of duty.
      The same guy who himself was murdered by his own men because he ignored their grievances.
      The same guy who refused to bend the knee previously, despite being offered the support he was seeking, on the basis that his people wouldn’t accept it.

      I mean, I could go on, but I think that’s enough to demonstrate that for Jon to decide that he’s going to risk everything by giving up his kingdom, unnecessarily, because he’s in love or because he’s had a sudden epiphany about what a great ruler Dany could be, is just beyond the pale stupid.

      I’m not quite ready to give up on Season 8 going some way to rectify the absurdity. Although I’m far from optimistic.

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    53. Ten Bears,

      I think we all know that the most important aspect to the conclusion of this show will be whether or not magic Targ baby is a boy or a girl.

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    54. I think it would be amazing for the endgame, if Cersei were ultimately the one to choose good or bad. She has been the only villain who was always present (except for the NK) and I think she would rather rule a whole city of wights (possibly including her own children brought back to life) than joining her enemies for a good cause. But maybe she will surprise everyone. Who knows.

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    55. Another season with Ghost on the sidelines, Jon dies, Dany gets to decide how/where to rule and Jon’s parentage drives no conflicts or story arc? I’m not sure I could come up with a conclusion that would irritate more more!

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    56. Katrinella,

      I do love Lena and that would be interesting for sure, but Cersei’s done so many horrible things that I would hate for her to end up being the “savior” of Westeros. I feel like that would be a twist for the sake of a twist type of ending and wouldn’t be consistent with her character.

      So far, she’s proven that she doesn’t have an altruistic bone in her body and I don’t expect that to change.

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    57. LadyGoodman,

      Haha same here! To me, if Jon’s parentage reveal ends up not amounting to anything significant in terms of moving the story forward then the identity of his parents could’ve been kept a mystery in my opinion. The show dedicated two season finales dramatically confirm R+L=J.

      It was confirmed for us in s6 and s7 and it’ll be confirmed for the other characters in s8.

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    58. Excellent article!

      I have gone backwards and forwards several times already on whether Jon and/or Dany will survive season eight, and I expect I will continue to do so.

      As for the Northern lords reaction to Daenerys – I wonder how much time they will actually have to react before they get the news that the Army of the Dead has breached the Wall and is heading for them. That said, I do think Jon will need to speak for Daenerys and tell the Northerners what she has seen.

      But, it isn’t just Daenerys – if the Northern lords find out about Jon’s parentage, he needs to recruit them to fight alongside Lyanna Stark’s son, not Rhaegar Targaryen’s.

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    59. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      Is that really the reason? Because his people would not accept it?

      He also said it was because he did not know her and her own claim rested on the the man his father fought to over through

      Tormund also calls him out for not wanting to bend the knee because of pride which we need to think is definetly a big factor because it is the second time someone brings up pride

      There are a lot more reasons given than just his people would not support it. And based on the fact that the support of his people is the one thing that did not change it is clear that was never the main reason

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    60. House Monty,

      No, that wasn’t necessarily the only reason. But it’s the one I chose to highlight to illustrate how bizarre his sudden change in attitude was.

      Not quite sure what you mean by your final sentence. Just because Jon chose to disregard his people’s objections to a southern/Targaryen ruler, doesn’t necessarily mean it wasn’t the main reason for his initial refusal to bend the knee.

      As for that ‘pride’ business, that’s just a further example of the bizarre sabotage of Jon’s character and some illogical retconning. Since two seasons ago it was Jon lecturing Mance (and later Tormund) on pride and Mance clearly stated that pride wasn’t the basis for his refusal to bend the knee.

      For them to suggest that either Jon’s or Mance’s stances were motivated by pride is absurd given what had previously been established.

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    61. “Just because Jon chose to disregard his people’s objections to a southern/Targaryen ruler, doesn’t necessarily mean it wasn’t the main reason for his initial refusal to bend the knee.”

      Of course it does. If it was his main reason for refusing to bend the knee he would not have bent the knee. His main reason had to have been something where some actual change occurred. The only thing that changed was he got to know Daenerys as a person and Tormund pointed out how Mance was prideful.

      And Jon clearly does not care what people think. He makes decisions on his own. He decides what is right and then goes on and does them. It is one of his traits and Sansa calls him out on it. The idea that Jon would somehow allow others to influence him when he thought something was right is really the crazy notion here.

      “As for that ‘pride’ business, that’s just a further example of the bizarre sabotage of Jon’s character and some illogical retconning. Since two seasons ago it was Jon lecturing Mance (and later Tormund) on pride and Mance clearly stated that pride wasn’t the basis for his refusal to bend the knee.”

      Mance stating that pride was not the basis for his refusal to bend the knee and pride actually not being the reason are not the same thing. Just because a character says something does not mean its true. Characters just like people reveal who they are through action not words.

      And the action we saw was Mance choosing death and leaving his 100k wildlings on the other side of the wall to die and be killed by the white walkers vs. bend the knee. Not sure we should take a man who would make that choice at face value.

      “For them to suggest that either Jon’s or Mance’s stances were motivated by pride is absurd given what had previously been established.”

      Is Jon somehow not a prideful man? Just the way he makes decisions and does not seek out other people’s opinions suggest he heavily values his own judgement which is a sign of high self regard.

      He looked very proud when he was named King in the North. And why shouldn’t he be? He may not have wanted it but he sure looked happy when he got it. Why would he want to give that up?

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    62. They have repeatedly said in the show that no one would have batted an eye at Jaime and Cersei if their name was Targaryen so I really don’t think the kingdoms will care if Jon and Dany, Targaryens, are aunt and nephew. It should be expected. I doubt Dany will care, she always thought she would marry Viserys and, if born sooner, would have married Rhaegar. Jon might be freaked out, if they spare any time for character building.

      I don’t get all the theories that either Jon or Dany must die. After all the talk about needing heirs because it will take years to build the world she wants, to keep those heirs Targaryen she and Jon would have to have more than one child to build up the family again. Four, two of each sex, would work best. Marry a boy to a girl to keep the line pure, then marry the other two to outsiders to prevent that madness gene and then intermarry their offspring. So unless Dany pops out quints, or maybe triplets for the whole three dragon thing, she and Jon have to live to have more than one kid.

      I also don’t get why people want the dragons to die. They make the show. People go on about the dragon scenes, Killing them all off would ruin it. I wouldn’t want to watch reruns or buy the series knowing yeah that dragon scene was great, but they all die. Spoils of War was tarnished for me when the follow up was the poorly timed journey beyond the wall and the whole lets negotiate with Cersei to stall the war for the throne another six episodes stories. They do still need an audience for future projects so going the lame route by killing the last two memebers of House Targaryen and/or all the dragons might have people thinking twice about investing more time with the GoT world. HBO can only allow so many bad series finales before it hurts their future shows. GoT has to kill it going out, not kill everyone.

        Quote  Reply

    63. House Monty,

      You’re not making sense. If somebody chooses to do something despite existing objections/apprehensions, it doesn’t suddenly mean that they weren’t a relevant factor to begin with.

      As for Mance, you can’t just dismiss a character specifically denying a motivation for his actions because it’s not convenient.

      Mance also explained why he chose death over kneeling to Stannis. He wasn’t prepared to enlist the Wildlings in Stannis’s war for the Iron Throne. How many would he have consigned to death anyway by doing so? 10,000? 50,000? 100,000?

      It’s a leap in logic to dismiss Mance’s own justifications for his actions and decide upon a contradictory assessment. That whole business was dodgy writing.

      Is Jon proud? Somewhat, sure. Certainly when he was younger and thought he was better than the other Night’s Watch recruits and being a steward was beneath him.

      Is there any real evidence that Jon refused to bend the knee to Daenerys because he was too proud? No.

      In fact, the producers seemed to go out of their way to dismiss any sense of pride in Jon.

      He rejects Sansa’s compliments on his leadership.
      He didn’t correct Daenerys when she addressed him as a Lord; Davos did.
      When Davos was trying to work out exactly how he should be addressed, he told him it didn’t matter.
      When Gendry remarks on his height he laughs it off, just as he laughs off Tormund and Davos’s banter about how stupid the wight hunt idea is.
      He and Tyrion exchanged playful insults and he confesses to feeling like “a Northern fool”.
      He volunteered to give up Longclaw to Jorah.

      If we’re supposed to believe, despite Jon’s humility repeatedly being outlined, that above all other concerns it was actually pride that prevented him bending the knee, well, all that would point to is more nonsensical contradictory writing.

      Either he’s proud and has to learn to compromise. Or he’s humble and has to overcome the external factors preventing him compromising.

      Having him be too proud yet simultaneously humble, and state specific reasons for his refusal only to suddenly dismiss them as secondary to his inconspicuous pride, would be simply awful writing.

      Although, to be fair, that may simply be the case, which I’ve acknowledged from the start.

        Quote  Reply

    64. “You’re not making sense. If somebody chooses to do something despite existing objections/apprehensions, it doesn’t suddenly mean that they weren’t a relevant factor to begin with.”

      Define relevant? It clearly was not the reason contsraining his decision.

      Also, I find it laughable that you think Jon Snow would actually allow the opiniom of his subordinates to influence his decision making.

      “As for Mance, you can’t just dismiss a character specifically denying a motivation for his actions because it’s not convenient.”

      Has nothing to do with finding it convenient or not. It has to do with the actual evidence.

      “Mance also explained why he chose death over kneeling to Stannis. He wasn’t prepared to enlist the Wildlings in Stannis’s war for the Iron Throne. How many would he have consigned to death anyway by doing so? 10,000? 50,000? 100,000”

      He told them they would all die if they didn’t get south of the wall. Less than all of them would have died had they fought for Stannis. So his stated reasons make no sense.

      “It’s a leap in logic to dismiss Mance’s own justifications for his actions and decide upon a contradictory assessment. That whole business was dodgy writing.”

      No. Its a leap in logic to take Mance at face value given what he knew was coming for his people if they stayed north of the wall.

      “Is Jon proud? Somewhat, sure. Certainly when he was younger and thought he was better than the other Night’s Watch recruits and being a steward was beneath him.”

      Bingo.

      “Is there any real evidence that Jon refused to bend the knee to Daenerys because he was too proud? No.”

      Well you have two characters call him out on it. You have his prior characterization. And you have the fact that of course a King would not want to bend the knee.

      “He rejects Sansa’s compliments on his leadership.”

      Because she was just trying to manipulate him.

      “He didn’t correct Daenerys when she addressed him as a Lord; Davos did.”

      Because he doesn’t care about formalities.

      “When Davos was trying to work out exactly how he should be addressed, he told him it didn’t matter.”

      Sounds like a true Northerner

      “When Gendry remarks on his height he laughs it off, just as he laughs off Tormund and Davos’s banter about how stupid the wight hunt idea is.”

      And? Laughing things off sounds like what a super confident well developed human being like Jon would do. The man is proud not insecure. Only an insecure person would allow those things to phase him.

      “He and Tyrion exchanged playful insults and he confesses to feeling like “a Northern fool”.”

      And? That does not show he is does not have pride. Just that he has a sense of humor and doesn’t take himself too seriously.

      “He volunteered to give up Longclaw to Jorah.”

      And? None of these examples are signs of not having pride. They are just signs that he is a good human being, the values of the north are not showey and he doesn’t let minor things phase him.

      “If we’re supposed to believe, despite Jon’s humility repeatedly being outlined, that above all other concerns it was actually pride that prevented him bending the knee, well, all that would point to is more nonsensical contradictory writing.”

      I think you are mistaking pride for arrogance.

      “Either he’s proud and has to learn to compromise. Or he’s humble and has to overcome the external factors preventing him compromising.”

      I don’t think those are the only options.

      “Having him be too proud yet simultaneously humble, and state specific reasons for his refusal only to suddenly dismiss them as secondary to his inconspicuous pride, would be simply awful writing.”

      Believe what you want.

        Quote  Reply

    65. House Monty: Define relevant? It clearly was not the reason constraining his decision.

      Also, I find it laughable that you think Jon Snow would actually allow the opiniom of his subordinates to influence his decision making.

      You merely stating “it clearly was not” does not automatically make it so. You realise that, right?

      And the last time Jon Snow ignored the opinions of his subordinates on a decision as big as this… they killed him.

      You would hope that the writers would have him learn his lesson by now. Especially since it’s not just his safety, but the safety of his siblings he has to worry about. Not to mention the stability of his own war effort.

      Has nothing to do with finding it convenient or not. It has to do with the actual evidence.

      He told them they would all die if they didn’t get south of the wall. Less than all of them would have died had they fought for Stannis. So his stated reasons make no sense.

      It has everything to do with convenience. And you have no evidence. Aside from Tormund’s opinion, which Jon could’ve refuted by informing him of Mance’s specific response to his own interrogation of his motives at the time.

      Just because you disagree with the character’s reasoning doesn’t mean you get to dismiss it out of hand and designate an alternate motivation.

      Bingo.

      It’s really kinda bizarre how you eagerly accept examples of Jon’s youthful pride all the way back in Season 1 as proof of its ongoing influence over his decisions in Season 7, then set about trying to dismiss in quite tenuous and disingenuous fashion each of the multiple demonstrations of his humility in Season 7 individually.

      I think you are mistaking pride for arrogance.

      Wait… so now he refused to bend the knee because he’s too arrogant?

      I don’t even know where to begin.

      Believe what you want.

      I will, thanks. You’re the one who keeps challenging my opinions, simply because they don’t align with your own.

        Quote  Reply

    66. “ You merely stating “it clearly was not” does not automatically make it so. You realise that, right?”

      No. What makes it right is the logic. He decided not bend the knee because of three variables: knowing the person, opinion of northern lords and pride. Only two of those variables changed. Then clearly the one that did not change was not that important or the controlling variable. On its own it could never have been decisive because we got an actual experiment where it did not move and the other two moved and the decision flipped.

      “And the last time Jon Snow ignored the opinions of his subordinates on a decision as big as this… they killed him.”

      Sure that is fair. But frankly beside the point.

      “You would hope that the writers would have him learn his lesson by now. Especially since it’s not just his safety, but the safety of his siblings he has to worry about. Not to mention the stability of his own war effort.”

      Again he did not learn but that is beside the point.

      “It has everything to do with convenience. And you have no evidence. Aside from Tormund’s opinion, which Jon could’ve refuted by informing him of Mance’s specific response to his own interrogation of his motives at the time.”

      Tormund’s opinion is bit evidence and the fact that Jon does not refute the opinion is evidence that he agrees with Tormund.

      “Just because you disagree with the character’s reasoning doesn’t mean you get to dismiss it out of hand and designate an alternate motivation.”

      Sure i can. Especially when the stated reasoning made no sense and subsequent evidence highlights how Mance brought disaster on his people.

      “It’s really kinda bizarre how you eagerly accept examples of Jon’s youthful pride all the way back in Season 1 as proof of its ongoing influence over his decisions in Season 7, then set about trying to dismiss in quite tenuous and disingenuous fashion each of the multiple demonstrations of his humility in Season 7 individually.”

      I think your just mis analyzing

      “Wait… so now he refused to bend the knee because he’s too arrogant?”

      No ide what you are talking about

      “I will, thanks. You’re the one who keeps challenging my opinions, simply because they don’t align with your own.”

      Yes. I think they are straight wrong. You were the one trying to say Jon was making a calculated decision in the middl of a scene that has a freaking love song playing.

        Quote  Reply

    67. I’ve really enjoyed reading the comments, in addition to Morgoth’s educated guess!

      Here are my shower thoughts:

      1. Bran and Sam will probably decide to tell Jon the truth, but change their minds. Maybe because Dany’s already pregnant when they arrive in Winterfell. How long will it take them to get there? How much later will the story pick up for us? Or, maybe they don’t say anything because it’s just not as important as a (mostly) united Westeros, right now. I definitely think that making it public would cause real trouble, at a really bad time. Maybe they just tell Jon. But I highly doubt he would keep that a secret from Dany. I think she’ll feel threatened (and maybe not as unique), and Jon will feel even more out of place. They might question the incestuousness, as well. But, I think they will get over it. Also, I don’t think he would be a willing participant in pretending he’s not the father, if she is pregnant.

      2. I think it’s possible that Jon and Dany both die, but after she’s had a baby (or twins). Tyrion and/or Sansa would probably be the guardian(s). Maybe they get together. Dany and Jon would probably prefer more of a democracy than a monarchy; so, maybe there will be more of a parliament. Hopefully, Davos, Jorah, Missandei and/or Varys makes it. They will need advisors.

      3. I don’t think Jaime and Brienne will hook up in any romantic way. It would just be too forced and cheesy. I think one, or both, will die in each other’s arms though. Maybe they will just give each other the “coulda, woulda, shoulda” look. I think more than a romantic love, they just respect and admire each other so much that they won’t let it go any further. Even if they wanted to.

      3. I don’t think Bran is the NK. I just think that the NK is also a greenseer. He’s just better at it than Bran, right now. The NK has had the whole thing planned out from the beginning. He knew he needed to touch Bran, and he knew he needed a dragon to get beyond the wall. He patiently waited for the opportunities to present themselves and he was ready for them. My questions are: Is he as powerful south of the wall? Does Bran have an advantage over him now? Are they still linked?

      4. Some how, some way, I think Cersei will become the Night Queen. Maybe the NK will seek her out. Is her story line really just to be a nuisance and then blow up King’s Landing? That seems so petty, and a waste of a good character. She is petty though. Maybe she dies (see #5 below) and Qyburn reanimates her. Qyburn was all over that wight’s hand last season. He may present zombie Cersei to the NK as an offering.

      5. I think Jon goes back to King’s Landing to get the Valerian steel from the throne. They’re going to need it. Maybe the Hound goes with him and we finally get our Clegane Bowl. Maybe Jaime does too and kills Cersei. I highly doubt Arya will kill her. I wouldn’t mind Sansa killing her, but unless she volunteers to go down there, I don’t see that happening.

      6. I know Jon told Melisandre not to bring him back, but that was when he was at his lowest point. He had nothing to live for. Now he does. If he dies, and especially if he and Dany have a baby, I wouldn’t be surprised if Beric brings him back. Maybe Jon changes his mind, as he’s dying. Or, maybe Beric (or someone else) decides that Jon needs to be brought back.

      7. I don’t think the dragons have to die. Has it been established that dragons can reproduce asexually?

      8. I don’t expect the show to solve all of the riddles. I expect the books to though!!

      I have more thoughts, but they need to ferment a little longer.

        Quote  Reply

    68. Charles:
      The huge thing you leave out is the Three Eyed Raven. All of the prophesies and the earlier Three Eyed Raven say that it is Bran who has the key role in defeating the Knight King and the undead.That is the whole reason he had to go north to meet and become the Three Eyed Raven.I see no validity in a season 8 sequence that doesn’t address the almost certainly critical role of Bran.Also don’t ignore the predictions we have seen.Twice we have seen a roofless room containing an Iron Throne onto which snow is falling.In one of Bran’s early visions we also see the shadow of a dragon as it flies over King’s landing. These things were not included by chance.

      I agree entirely. I’m sure Bran will play a major part in bringing down the NK and his Army of the Dead. Probably with the help of Sam also.

      Bran’s visions and Dany’s walk through the House of the Undying need to be addressed also in S8. Bran’s vision of a shadow of a dragon flying over Kings Land could be construed as Dany on Drogon flying to the dragon pit meeting in the final episode of season 7? However, her walk through the House of the Undying and the destroyed throne room in the Red Keep with the snow falling through the roof needs closure? As does Dany reuniting in that tent in the snow with her dead husband Khal Drogo and their unborn son? I could never understand that scene?

      Guess we’ll just have to wait and see 😮

        Quote  Reply

    69. To House Monty and Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:

      I think you’re both going in circles and missing the following key points:

      1. John definately had/has a chip on his shoulder. He grew up a bastard, but a privilegedged one. Though I think he learned his lession when he bested the men/boys, at Castle Black, and his privilege was pointed out to him. Before that, he may have felt a bit prideful, but I think he’s found humility instead. He’s been a champion of the downtrodden.

      2. Other than Thormund, Edd and Bran, who’s seen the NK and the AotD?? I feel like Jon has been the only one to fully realize what they’re up against. It may seem like he always makes bad decisions and he never takes advice, but most of the time I think he knows exactly what needs to be done. But if you’re wasting time trying to convince people, who are more concerned with things that won’t matter, and/or refuse to listen, it can backfire.

      3. Jon made a calculated decision to bend the knee AFTER he witnessed Dany’s devotion to the cause. She came to their rescue and was still committed even after losing her child. He respects/trusts her and sees that aligning with her is the best move to win the great war. When they first met, all he knew was that she wanted to take over Westeros and be queen. All she wanted was for him to bend the knee. She changed her tune and he recongized that she saw the bigger picture. Also, he doesn’t want to rule, but will if there’s no better alternative. I think he sees her as that now. And don’t forget that he abandoned Ygrette for duty. I don’t think he bent the knee because he’s in love. He is in love with her though. But he’s loyal to a fault, which is why he told Cersei that he declared for Dany. Sometimes, he just can’t help himself.

        Quote  Reply

    70. Firannion,

      I want to respond to a couple of their final points, because they’re infuriating. But I have zero interest in carrying this nonsense on any further.

      When people start breaking down your posts line by line and trying to tenuously refute every tiny aspect, you know you’ve crossed the line from a genuine discussion to an exercise in obdurate dogmatism.

        Quote  Reply

    71. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      ‘Infuriating’ is a strong word. Remember that this is just a TV show we’re talking about here.

      When one finds that someone else is adept at pushing one’s buttons, it is sometimes helpful to examine one’s buttons and see if there is a sensitivity switch that can be ratcheted down a bit.

      But you do seem to have come to the conclusion that it is time to let this particular argument go, for which I commend you. It was becoming tiresome.

        Quote  Reply

    72. Shay:
      To House Monty and Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:

      It may seem like he always makes bad decisions and he never takes advice, but most of the time I think he knows exactly what needs to be done. But if you’re wasting time trying to convince people, who are more concerned with things that won’t matter, and/or refuse to listen, it can backfire.

      I agree with all your points, mainly this one. People are constantly picking on Jon for not heeding other people’s advice, but honestly the advice that he gets has mostly been shitty.

      When he brought up the Wildlings beyond the Wall with the other Night’s Watch men, their solution was to ignore them, let them die beyond the Wall, thereby increasing the AOTD. That was terrible advice by some narrow minded and bigoted people who were completely missing the big picture, not to mention how inhuman that choice was. Jon undoubtedly did the right thing by letting the Wildlings in through the Wall, irrespective of what his NW brothers thought. If he could be faulted for anything, it would be that he should perhaps have done a better job convincing the others of the necessity of his actions.

      Sansa and the other Northerners did not want Jon to go south to meet Dany and obtain the dragonglass, the only weapon known to work against the white walkers and available in large enough quantities to arm his men. Yet, they had no other alternative suggestion, no better advice, as to how to tackle the WW threat, if not to go to Dragonstone to get the Dragonglass. Under the circumstances, going to Dragonstone was the only viable option for him.

      Jon has had to trust his own judgement, because there is no one else around him who is better at it.

        Quote  Reply

    73. Shay,

      “Maybe she dies…and Qyburn reanimates her. Qyburn was all over that wight’s hand last season. He may present zombie Cersei to the NK as an offering.”
      ———————-

      The tinfoil is strong in you!👩🏻‍🚀 I like it. 😄

      While we’re on the subject of Qyburn scientifically reanimating the dead or dying into Synthetic Wights: (a) Might NK simply lock eyes with FrankenGregor or hack into his neural net, and thereby cause Gregor to join the Army of the Dead? (b) My tinfoil scenario would be Cersei instructing Qyburn to recruit 100,000 “volunteers” from the 1,000,000 population of KL, and turn them into her own undead army.

      #FeelTheBurn

        Quote  Reply

    74. ghost of winterfell,

      For old times sake, a reminder….

      •S5e5 Jon-NW re: Wilding Rescue Program

      NW Brother: “You’d bring wildlings here through our gates?”

      Jon: “Men, women, and children will die by the thousands if we do nothing.”

      NW Brother: “Let them die. We got our own to worry about. Less enemies for us.”

      Stannis: “Fewer.”

      Davos: “What?”

      Stannis: “Nothing.”

      ***

      Jon (to Edd): “You were at the Fist of the First Men. If we abandon them, you know what they become. We can learn to live with the wildlings or we can add them to the army of the dead.
      Whatever they are now, they’re better than that.”

        Quote  Reply

    75. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:
      Firannion,

      I want to respond to a couple of their final points, because they’re infuriating. But I have zero interest in carrying this nonsense on any further.

      When people start breaking down your posts line by line and trying to tenuously refute every tiny aspect, you know you’ve crossed the line from a genuine discussion to an exercise in obdurate dogmatism.

      Isn’t obdurate dogmatism redundant?

      But regardless, I think the one who is being dogmatic is you.

      I am just accepting the evidence the show is presenting.

      You are the one who is refusing to accept what is on screen declaring it can’t be this way or if it is it has to be bad writing because i don’t like that decision the character made or what that implies for where the show is going.

      Sometimes characters make decisions we don’t approve of. It doesn’t make it bad writting. It just means they made a decision we don’t approve of or we just didn’t understand the character as well as we thought. It happens. Get over it.

        Quote  Reply

    76. Shay:
      To House Monty and Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:

      I think you’re both going in circles and missing the following key points:

      1. John definately had/has a chip on his shoulder. He grew up a bastard, but a privilegedged one. Though I think he learned his lession when he bested the men/boys, at Castle Black, and his privilege was pointed out to him. Before that, he may have felt a bit prideful, but I think he’s found humility instead. He’s been a champion of the downtrodden.

      2. Other than Thormund, Edd and Bran, who’s seen the NK and the AotD?? I feel like Jon has been the only one to fully realize what they’re up against. It may seem like he always makes bad decisions and he never takes advice, but most of the time I think he knows exactly what needs to be done. But if you’re wasting time trying to convince people, who are more concerned with things that won’t matter, and/or refuse to listen, it can backfire.

      3. Jon made a calculated decision to bend the knee AFTER he witnessed Dany’s devotion to the cause. She came to their rescue and was still committed even after losing her child. He respects/trusts her and sees that aligning with her is the best move to win the great war. When they first met, all he knew was that she wanted to take over Westeros and be queen. All she wanted was for him to bend the knee. She changed her tune and he recongized that she saw the bigger picture. Also, he doesn’t want to rule, but will if there’s no better alternative. I think he sees her as that now. And don’t forget that he abandoned Ygrette for duty. I don’t think he bent the knee because he’s in love. He is in love with her though. But he’s loyal to a fault, which is why he told Cersei that he declared for Dany. Sometimes, he just can’t help himself.

      I agree with 2 and 3. I don’t think he bent the knee because of love. I think he thought it was the right decision. I firmly agree with this analysis:

      https://www.buzzfeed.com/jennaguillaume/bendany?utm_term=.gj89yZ7WBP#.tygEKBbaVj

        Quote  Reply

    77. House Monty,

      I’ve just expressed criticism of what was depicted and hope that there’s more to what was presented than appears at face value, for the sake of drama and intrigue in the conclusion to this story.

      The dogma comes from people who insist on obsessively stamping out any alternative analysis, criticism and expectations that don’t align with their own desires for the conclusion of the story.

        Quote  Reply

    78. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man:
      House Monty,

      I’ve just expressed criticism of what was depicted and hope that there’s more to what was presented than appears at face value, for the sake of drama and intrigue in the conclusion to this story.

      The dogma comes from people who insist on obsessively stamping out any alternative analysis, criticism and expectations that don’t align with their own desires for the conclusion of the story.

      Lol. Stamping out is a funny choice of words.

      I have no power to stamp out anything.

      You expressed an opinion in an internet forum and someone disagreed with your opinion.

      That is all.

        Quote  Reply

    79. Shay:
      Dany and Jon would probably prefer more of a democracy than a monarchy; so, maybe there will be more of a parliament.

      This has absolutely no relation to anything either character has done in the series. We have been following both of them in leadership positions for several seasons (virtually the entire series, in Dany’s case), and neither has ever had any interest in democratizing their decision-making process. Both are entirely autocratic in their leadership style (which is not unusual in Westeros at all, but they are no different than anybody else in this regard).

        Quote  Reply

    80. Sean C.,
      Sean C.,

      I, respectfully, disagree. Although Jon and Dany are both natural leaders, Jon would rather not be king. He’s always been a leader by necessity. As for Dany, she wants to “break the wheel” and give independence to the people. I think she could be persuaded to end the monarchy.

        Quote  Reply

    81. Shay: 5. I think Jon goes back to King’s Landing to get the Valerian steel from the throne. They’re going to need it.

      The swords in the Iron Throne are just that: iron, ordinary steel. The recipe for forging Valyrian steel (or some key ingredient) was lost in the Doom. Aegon the Conqueror would not have wasted the little that was left in Westeros by melting it into his throne; it was way too scarce and valuable by that point in history.

        Quote  Reply

    82. Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      I’ve read through your comment and the ensuing responses and replies about Jon’s confounding decision to “bend the knee” in S7e6. I went back and compared that scene’s dialogue to Dany’s “strings attached” offer in S7e4 (“I will fight for you; I will fight for the North… When you bend the knee”). I’ve reproduced the dialogue of the S7e6 scene below.

      I was confused when I first watched that S7s6 scene, and I remain perplexed.

      • In contrast to her e4 “quid pro quo” offer, in e6 she promised unconditionally:

      “We are going to destroy the Night King and his army. And we’ll do it together. You have my word.”

      • I do not understand at that point what compelled Jon to relinquish his people’s sovereignty, and subject them to a “southern ruler”, especially a Targaryen. She didn’t demand that he “bend the knee.”

      • Jon’s supposed “pride” had nothing to do with anything.

      • Once Dany agreed to join Jon to destroy the NK and his army, he had essentially accomplished the two objectives of the “risky” mission he’d told his people he was undertaking on their behalf:
      (1) Mine the dragonglass on Dragonstone; and
      (2) Obtain the aid of Daeny’s armies and dragons to fight the WWs.

      • Leaving as King in the North,, and coming back as a Queen’s arm candy, was definitely not within the mission parameters.

      • I do not understand what possible reason he had for volunteering to “bend the knee.”

      • If his decision was supposed to be logical, she would’ve reiterated her original conditional offer, and he would have relented out of desperation. But that is not how it was scripted.

      • All I can think of is that this awkwardly constructed scene was placed in there to set up an abandonment or betrayal of House Stark by disgruntled Northerners and the “bloody weather vanes” Lords described by Sansa.

      —————–
      From S7e6

      Jon: “I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. I wish I could take it back. I wish we’d never gone.”
      Daenerys: “I don’t. If we hadn’t gone I wouldn’t have seen. You have to see it to know. Now I know. The dragons are my children. They’re the only children I’ll ever have. Do you understand? We are going to destroy the Night King and his army. And we’ll do it together. You have my word.”
      Jon: “Thank you, Dany.”
      Daenerys: “‘Dany.’ Who was the last person who called me that? I’m not sure, was it my brother? Not the company you want to keep.”
      Jon: “Alright. Not ‘Dany.’ How about ‘My Queen.’ I’d bend the knee but…”
      (motioning that he’s laid up in bed)
      Daenerys: “What about those who swore allegiance to you?”
      Jon: “They’ll all come to see you for what you are.”
      Daenerys: “I hope I deserve it.”
      Jon: “You do.”
      Daenerys: “You should get some rest.”

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    83. Ten Bears,

      House Monty,

      Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      Shay,

      Apologies for the bulk reply, but I do really think that Shay has summed up Jon’s decision to bend the knee here:

      Jon made a calculated decision to bend the knee AFTER he witnessed Dany’s devotion to the cause. She came to their rescue and was still committed even after losing her child. He respects/trusts her and sees that aligning with her is the best move to win the great war.

      I’d also add the following fact: Cersei WILL attack the north. Sansa has told Jon as much, and we’ve been hit over the head with the idea that he’s meant to be listening to her. Cersei has made her intentions very clear in her raven: “Bend the knee, or suffer the fate of all traitors.” In ep 7×06 and 7×07, Jon is attempting to get Cersei to ally with him and Dany in the Great War, or at least agree to a cease fire. But he knows that regardless of whether she agrees, it will be temporary.

      I think Jon knows full well that the north is in a terrible position. He essentially HAS to bend the knee to one woman or the other. The north will suffer heavy losses against the night king. If they prevail, they’ll have nothing left to fight Cersei. They need Dany’s forces for that. And if Dany is to protect the north against Cersei, that makes her their defacto monarch, does it not?

      So, his decision is both calculated and not. He’s spent months thinking about it. The only reason why he blurted out his desire to bend the knee at that time is because the solution to the north’s problems on both fronts had become immediately apparent. Yes, she’d sworn to help him already. And that made him realise that she was exactly the sort of person he could trust with the north’s defence – and its rulership.

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    84. iridium:
      Ten Bears,
      House Monty,
      Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,
      Shay,

      I think Jon knows full well that the north is in a terrible position. He essentially HAS to bend the knee to one woman or the other. The north will suffer heavy losses against the night king. If they prevail, they’ll have nothing left to fight Cersei. They need Dany’s forces for that. And if Dany is to protect the north against Cersei, that makes her their defacto monarch, does it not?

      So, his decision is both calculated and not. He’s spent months thinking about it. The only reason why he blurted out his desire to bend the knee at that time is because the solution to the north’s problems on both fronts had become immediately apparent. Yes, she’d sworn to help him already. And that made him realise that she was exactly the sort of person he could trust with the north’s defence – and its rulership.

      Agree with this – ultimately, I think Jon bends the knee to Dany because he knows, as he admits in Spoils of War in the cave, that he cannot win the war against the Night King without Dany’s army and her dragons. And the lives of Northerners mean more to Jon than the title they call him by. It calls back to King Torrhen bending the knee to Aegon I, two men Jon is descended from.

      And, when she speaks of defeating the Night King, Dany is prioritizing that above her fight for the Iron Throne – something Jon has been pushing for since their first meeting.

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    85. Jay Targ,

      The word ‘see’ here can be taken as a sort of stage direction, but does he also ‘see’ as understand? Does he, perhaps subconsciously, also recognise or perceive a Truth (which is their love theme’s title) about her? The quotes don’t clarify that. I think it’s a mix of both types. We all have ‘gut feels’ and stake a lot on following them. Jon has a good but imperfect record. Plus plot armour, LOL.

      Ramsay’s 20th Good Man,

      House Monty,

      Mance stating that pride was not the basis for his refusal to bend the knee and pride actually not being the reason are not the same thing. Just because a character says something does not mean its true…. And the action we saw was Mance choosing death and leaving his 100k wildlings on the other side of the wall to die and be killed by the white walkers vs. bend the knee. Not sure we should take a man who would make that choice at face value.

      In essence, Jon and Mance are alike–uniters, leaders, pragmatists, and visionaries who can see the goal and the immediate situation’s effect. They have the “seeing…the TRUE seeing” (along with a few others, including Arya, probably Sandor, and factually, Bran. When sober, Tyrion usually has it too.). Those people don’t often consult others because they have long histories of making sound and usually successful decisions on their own, and they cut to the chase.. They take some calculated risks because life demands it at times. But not being 100% ruthless, they also possess honour and mercy, which often bring additional risk.

      In life, part of the ‘seeing’ is getting to know the other person and whether you can truly trust him/her. After some time together, Mance knew Jon would do the right thing, Jon knew Dany would do the right thing, and FWIW, after 11 years of sharing Jon’s good heart, Arya knew Jon would do the right thing. So they acted the way they did. Not only did Jon find a way to get the Wildlings south of the Wall, he even risked Stannis’s wrath to let Mance go out with dignity rather than screaming from pain. I think Jon knew Dany had grit, sense, and a good heart and would postpone her conquest plans once she was convinced the TRUE enemy was the Others. He’s also probably right that the North will come to accept her. And since they both had so much power, both Jon and Dany also had advisors whose words they considered, but those advisors are uniformly older, wiser, experienced, and mostly lacking in personal agendas… as good advisors should be

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    86. Shay:
      I, respectfully, disagree. Although Jon and Dany are both natural leaders, Jon would rather not be king. He’s always been a leader by necessity. As for Dany, she wants to “break the wheel” and give independence to the people. I think she could be persuaded to end the monarchy.

      Whether or not you personally want to be king is not the same thing as ending the monarchy. Jon has never demonstrated any interest in systemic reform of that sort. He governs as a complete autocrat, which was especially evident last season, when just about every major decision he made was against the will of his counsellors.

      As for Dany, Dany’s belief in her absolute right to rule the Seven Kingdoms is the motive force behind her whole character. There’s scarcely anybody less likely to accept an argument to end the monarchy (even were somebody to make it, which nobody in her retinue ever has).

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    87. Sean C.: Whether or not you personally want to be king is not the same thing as ending the monarchy.Jon has never demonstrated any interest in systemic reform of that sort.He governs as a complete autocrat, which was especially evident last season, when just about every major decision he made was against the will of his counsellors.

      As for Dany, Dany’s belief in her absolute right to rule the Seven Kingdoms is the motive force behind her whole character.There’s scarcely anybody less likely to accept an argument to end the monarchy (even were somebody to make it, which nobody in her retinue ever has).

      Don’t you think Tyrion effectively makes the argument to her to end the hereditary monarchy? By pointing out she cannot have heirs and there are two other systems in Westeros, both elective, that could be effective for choosing her eventual heir?

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    88. House Monty,

      No, since Tyrion is merely trying to suggest methods for dealing with Dany’s lack of a hereditary heir, and Miracle Baby is on the way.

      Moreover, what Tyrion was proposing was a one-time elective autocrat. The Ironborn king was chosen in that manner for millennia.

        Quote  Reply

    89. Sean C.:
      House Monty,

      No, since Tyrion is merely trying to suggest methods for dealing with Dany’s lack of a hereditary heir, and Miracle Baby is on the way.

      ————–
      Oh no. Is NK going to abduct Cersei’s incest baby and do that fingernail to the cheek trick and turn him into Night Baby, so the final episode will be Miracle Baby vs. Night Baby in the Dragonpit?

      #NoBabyDramas

        Quote  Reply

    90. Sean C.:
      House Monty,

      No, since Tyrion is merely trying to suggest methods for dealing with Dany’s lack of a hereditary heir, and Miracle Baby is on the way.

      Moreover, what Tyrion was proposing was a one-time elective autocrat.The Ironborn king was chosen in that manner for millennia.

      Got it. So you see it as less foreshadowing for a potential end game system and just a way to introduce a problem whose resolution is coming.

        Quote  Reply

    91. “I can already see comments about the predictability of Jon becoming a dragon rider, especially after the “Aegon” reveal hardly came as a surprise to most fans who have been discussing “R+L = J” for years”
      I think that name was surprising to readers, since Rhaegar already had a son named Aegon, who was alive at the time he left to fight at the Trident.

      Dany’s talk about “breaking the wheel” never made much sense, since taking over would just be continuing the cycle. I think we can ignore it as just a soundbite they thought would sound cool.

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    92. FictionIsntReal,

      “I think that name was surprising to readers, since Rhaegar already had a son named Aegon, who was alive at the time he left to fight at the Trident.
      ————————–

      Well, that’s so if anyone asked: “Which Aegon?”

      The answer would be: “The little brother.” 🙂

        Quote  Reply

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