We learned a lot from Game Of Thrones’ “A Knight Of The Seven Kingdoms,” like how Jon Snow is absolutely exhausting, Pod adds singing to his list of skills, and a girl has no time to waste on foreplay. But the episode raised plenty of questions, too, and in this Mailbag Of Thrones we’re answering yours about Dany’s latest signs of madness, if the Night King has “the sight,” and which characters got happy endings right before they’re going to die. And as always, be sure to send any questions that arise during or after this week’s episode to firstname.lastname@example.org.
James asks: At least three times in this episode the showrunners not-so-secretly pushed everyone away from Team Daenerys:
1. Her blunt dissection of Jaime’s past behavior
2. Her open hostility to Sansa’s question about the North
3. Her immediate and clear understanding of Jon as a threat to her claim to the Iron Throne
Not counting the callousness with which she addressed the Tarly Family BBQ with Sam in the season premiere, is it just me, or are they shading her more and more in a “Mad Queen” direction?
It feels like that’s definitely the vibe the show is going for, but I think it’s a misdirection. They’ve toyed with this “Mad Queen” descent numerous time before, and every time Daenerys has proven to be a generally good person who has a temper. While she crucified a bunch of slave masters and cooked some Tarlys, it would be a betrayal of her entire arc to have her end up being worse than Cersei.
All of these anti-Dany moments also make sense if they are setting her up to make a choice like Sam asked Jon about: Would she sacrifice the throne for her people? Will she want to put the Dothraki and Unsullied through another war after/if they defeat the White Walkers, just so she can be queen of people who don’t want her as their ruler?
But don’t worry Team Khaleesi, because this could end up getting her what she wants. By stepping aside for the good of the realm she could show everyone, including skeptics like Sam and Sansa, she is worthy of being their queen.
Mike asks: Do you think the Night King had a plan for getting past the Wall that didn’t involve a dragon? The books hint that’s possible, but the Wall has held the White Walkers back for centuries, so what could have changed?
I suspect that his plan was to use zombie Viserion all along, because the Knight King’s got the sight, just like Bran and Jojen Reed. Why else would they have brought those long heavy chains with them on their march?
Those chains will always (and I do mean always) infuriate me, so any theory that can logically explain why the Night King had them handy is a theory I can support.
As for having “the sight” like Jojen and Bran (which means they had prophetic dreams and visions—only Bran can touch weirwoods and see through time), the Night King obviously has been planning this attack for thousands and thousands of years, so it is curious he waited until right before dragons came back to the world after being extinct for 150 years. That is unless he was specifically waiting for a dragon to get within spear range, because that was how he planned to get through the magic of the Wall.
The Night King seems to be smarter than he should be, like he knows something no one else does. It wouldn’t stun me if he also has the sight, which is why he stopped by the Giant Home Depot to get his chains in advance. Or he gained those powers when he “marked” Bran in a vision. He was created by the Children Of The Forest, after all. They might have bestowed him with powers we have yet to understand.
Matthew asks: Cribbing from Miracle Max in The Princess Bride, “Your friend here is only mostly dead…” It seems there are gradations to who is dead, undead, turned, and resurrected. Even the Iron Born leaders, it could be argued, have drowned once before coming back. Is Westeros just one giant Pet Semetary? Would the Night King, upon meeting The Mountain, simply clap him on the shoulder and then offer his hand up-top for a high five?
It probably wouldn’t work on The Mountain or someone like Euron who was resurrected via natural means. Gregor Clegane was never dead, he was “saved” by science, and Iron Islanders aren’t brought back via magic.
The real concern is whether the Night King has any dominion over Jon Snow and Beric Dondarrion. They were both dead-dead, and if the Faceless Men are right and there is only one god, the God Of Death, isn’t he responsible for all of the wight resurrections and Jon and Beric?
I’ve been worried about this for years, and now you too can be terrified about Jon’s eyes suddenly going blue in the middle of the Battle of Winterfell.
Malika asks: With Brienne and Theon’s character arcs coming pretty close to full circle, are they in the top five for characters most likely to die next week? Who do you think is most likely to die?
Brienne’s knighting was one of the show’s best, most emotional moments ever, and as soon as it was over it felt like Jaime had signed her death warrant. Same for Theon, whose entire story finally felt like it was worth all the time the series invested in it.
My bet is the living get annihilated at the Battle of Winterfell, with 10-12 people total escaping via dragon. But here are my top five most likely.
1. Theon: What is dead may never die, but rises… like 10 seconds later
2. Grey Worm: Never, ever, ever talk about retirement before a battle
3. Brienne: The first female knight will be the first wight knight
4. Jorah: Like they always say, if the Greyscale doesn’t get you, the ice demons will
5. Little Sam: He has it coming
Sam asks: Melisandre’s return means doom for ….? Fill in the blank.
Based on her age, Lyanna Mormont.
Kidding, but only because Lyanna doesn’t have any king’s blood, no matter how often fans scream “Yass queen” when she’s onscreen.
Like I said in last week’s Mailbag, I expect Melisandre to return with an army of red priests and priestesses, which is going to mean doom for two characters: the Night King and Melisandre. She did tell Varys she had to return to this strange country to die, and helping defeat the White Walkers will be her final act in her service to the Lord Of Light.
Jon asks: If, as Jaime says, Cersei has more than enough troops to deal with the North after they’re done with the undead, how DOES the North deal with her? Does Euron betray her? Does the Golden Company betray her? Does the Iron Bank betray her? Does Melisandre show up with another army? Does Nymeria show up with an army of wolves?
Cersei’s imposing army in King’s Landing could quickly become non-existent if Daenerys’s dragons survive the dead. Euron makes Littlefinger look reliable, and despite the Golden Company’s stellar record, a mercenary company can’t spend its gold if dragonflame has melted it into their skin.
Lauren asks: Arya and Gendry’s coitus scene was awkward, but do you think there’s anything behind it happening due to her finding out that he’s a Baratheon? Or is that a reach?
Nah, she wanted to check off the only name she had on her other list. Him being a Baratheon had nothing to do with it.
She was going to shag that stag no matter what. Which is why Gendry will probably die next week. Who got a happier ending than that guy?