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March 19, 2017 at 8:59 pm #90592
I’ve been reading through A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms and something has stood out to me – a number of times, members of the Targaryen family have streaks of silver hair rather than a full head of it. This instantly made me think of Jaquen. Now, in the books, Jaquen is with Arya at Harrenhall but it is implied she meets a different faceless man in Braavos. The show changed this, having Jaquen meet her there. His behavior both in Westeros and in Braavos make me think he might be revealed later on in the show as Aegon Targaryen, the presumed dead brother of Daenerys. At Harrenhall, Jaquen did not seem very fond of the Lannisters – he killed the tickler and the guards for Arya very effectively, but he seemed to almost enjoy it – something a faceless man wouldn’t feel. This makes sense, given that the Lannisters betrayed the Targaryen family when Jamie stabbed the Mad King in the back and opened the gates for Robert Baratheon and Ned Stark. In Braavos, Jaquen knew Arya’s desire for vengeance when she sought training to be a faceless man, and yet he trained her anyway – maybe he too understands the need for revenge? This seems to be make sense when considering how easily he let Arya go when she killed the waif. In the books, Tyrion discovered Aegon Targaryen was in hiding in Essos and was planning an invasion of Westeros to claim the Iron Throne. Being a faceless man would certainly be a good way to hide your identity. By the end of Dance of Dragons, Aegon is capturing a city near Kings Landing while Dany has just gone missing. I honestly thought Aegon’s existence in the book was a big letdown since Dany was the clear focus. Maybe the show is trying to alter it a bit by making Jaquen show up again at some point, revealing himself as Aegon Targaryen and helping/hindering Daenerys?
March 19, 2017 at 10:08 pm #90593
The show and/or the books would have needed to set up something pointing to this sort of connection between Aegon and the Faceless Men. The books and show both set up the possibility of “Young Griff”: not only do we learn that: 1) the putative dead son of Rhaegar was much too young to be easily identified when he was killed AND happened to be so smashed that “not easily” went to “not possibly”; and 2) the foresighted Varys has been loyal to the Targaryens all along. The books also set up that there were Westerosi expatriates in Essos who had historical connections to the Targaryens. Thus, what we got in Dragons was not far from what many fans predicted nearly 20 years ago that we would get.
What the show and/or book would have needed to do is set up some sort of connection between the Faceless men and Aegon in some way. That might have been a connection to Rhaegar or to Varys or to the Martells or something like that. That is, we needed to see that there was some obvious way for someone to think “Let’s hide the Prince here.” Ideally, it would have been a set of connections that looked like they explained (or were explained by) something else, so that when we got the last piece, it would all fall together.
Without doing this, it would become complete Deus ex Machina: and so far, both book and show have assiduously avoided Deus ex Machina devices.
At this point, I think that the show is entirely eschewing Aegon. The time to reintroduce him would have been last year. Aegon’s most probable role in the book is going to be to put Daenerys in the quandary of being loyal to herself, her goals and her accomplishments, or being loyal to family and primogeniture. We know that the story of Winds of Winter is about conflicted goals/desires/feelings when making alliances. My bet is that the show is going to keep some of this, but using Aegon’s half-brother. We don’t know what the story for this season is going to be, but it will be something along these same lines, so it should be easy enough to do. Ultimately, just as long as Daeny undergoes the same character evolution, it really is not important which relative causes it.