Game of Theories- What If the Night King Isn’t the Big Bad

The final season of Game of Thrones is only a month away. Take a minute and think about that for a second. One. Month. Away. Thirty days from now we’ll be sitting down at nine o’clock and watching as these final six episodes close the chapter on Westeros… at least the television version. I for one am not entirely convinced that I’ll read the final chapters of Westeros because George RR Martin seems determined to never publish another Song of Ice and Fire book again which means I have to take my closure where I can get it. I digress.

It’s been about a year and a half since we watched a new episode of Thrones and after last week’s trailer, the hype train has left the station. These next four weeks are going to fly by at the speeds of dragons leaving the Stormlands and heading beyond the Wall, and I started thinking wouldn’t it be great to start spinning some theories to light your Game of Thrones fires just a little more? After all, this is about to be the end of an era. Living in the world of streaming I doubt there will be another must watch show of this magnitude ever again. Everything is at our fingertips now but there is patience and anticipation that each episode of Thrones is built on. If you’re not watching it the night of then you’re missing out. This is a moment in time to be celebrated, and we’re going to do just that on a weekly basis with a new reoccurring column.

Game of Theories

Pretty catchy title, right? Each week leading up to the premiere of season eight I will be here talking to you guys about some crazy theories I have concerning this final season. Some might be spot on while others might be so outlandish you can’t help but laugh. Either way, it’s going to get Thrones into your brain and get those wheels spinning. Don’t be afraid to hit me back with a counter theory or to tell me I’m nuts. That’s part of the fun of it all. Let’s get ready for the unexpected by discussing things that could possibly happen. Fun times for all! What better place to start than with the Night King.

GoT 1

It seems that since episode one of Game of Thrones we have been building to this moment with the White Walkers. This is a group of characters, a force that threatens to topple over everything we know about Westeros, that has been looming larger and larger with each passing season. One of the things I’ve loved about this show is how perfectly they use the Others. I may be wrong but it seems that there’s at least one White Walker centric episode per season. Sometimes just a glimpse and more recently large battles that inform us just how powerful this force is. This slow build has brought us to season eight. The Wall is down and the White Walkers are approaching the North. War is coming. Perhaps the Great War.

We’ve been conditioned, ever since we saw the Night King baptize one of Craster’s bastards, that the Night King is the big bad of the series. Don’t get me wrong, he both looks and acts the part. This guy threw some kind of ice spear like an Olympic javelin and killed a freakin’ dragon. This is a guy who can throw up the international symbol of “come at me bro” and raise the dead. He’s the leader of a zombie army that can only be killed by dragon glass or Valyrian steel. Yeah, this is the bad guy. No doubts about that. But, is he the bad guy?

We know that the Wall has fallen and that the White Walkers are on their way towards Winterfell. We also know through rumors and announcements that the third episode of this season will center around the Battle of Winterfell. I’m just going to do the quick math here and say that’s with the White Walkers. We know Cersei is willing to sit this one out and let both sides destroy each other. Cersei going to Cersei. With a season that is only six episodes though I think we need to start to wonder if the White Walkers are the only threat for the season.

Let’s look at this from a simple mathematical point. If the White Walkers arrive in Winterfell and eff everything up then they’re going to be unstoppable. There will be nothing left to prevent them from marching all the way through to King’s Landing and putting the Iron Throne on ice. Westero’s largest army is currently in the North looking to prevent just that. If they fall the rest of the country is screwed. I don’t care what plans Cersei has with Tyrion or anyone else, there is no way she can defeat the White Walkers. Based on that line of thinking it’s easy to assume that after this massive war that our focuses are going to shift towards the living. Of course, you can prolong this battle by having Jon Snow and the rest of the North retreat towards King’s Landing pinning him against both Cersei and the Night King but that seems almost like too much. Three episodes in and we can possibly get rid of one threat. It may be an unpopular idea but it’s completely possible. Short season is going to speed some things up.

GoT 2If that’s the case then there has to be another big bad, at least for the last three episodes. If the Night King falls at the Battle of Winterfell it seems likely that Cersei becomes our major villain. She holds the throne so it kind of makes sense, but I’m not here to talk about what makes sense. No. We’ve known forever that Cersei was going to be a problem but I don’t think she’s going to be the problem. It will be satisfying to see her defeated, and I’ve got a theory on how that happens too, but I think there’s more to it than that.

A couple of seasons ago we learned that Jon Snow is not only a Stark but he’s part Targaryen as well making his whole romance with Daenerys all types of icky. One has to believe that that little nugget of information won’t stay hidden forever. Something that large has to come to the light of day, and we know that Sam has this info. Wouldn’t that be some gift to give to your best friend? To tell him the one thing he’s longed for? Who his parents are? Sam would just be doing what any good friend would do in that situation except it’s a mistake. Some things should be left hidden.

Ignore the fact that Jon and Daenerys are bumping uglies, that complicates matters but it’s not the driving force of this theory. What is the one thing that we know about Daenerys? What has been that one driving force? She. Wants. The. Iron. Throne. That’s it. The Mother of Dragons feels that it’s not only her birthright but what is owed to her. I would argue that makes her a pretty crappy candidate to lead Westeros. Yes, she has Tyrion as her hand, who knows if he’s compromised or not. There have been glimpses of understanding that maybe she knows how to lead but when push comes to shove I don’t think Daenerys is ready or capable of being in charge of alllllll of Westeros. She’ll never admit that. As far as she’s concerned this is her destiny and she’s got the dragons to back it up.

Now, take that thought of Daenerys willing to do anything to win the Iron Throne. Keep it fresh head. Got it? Good. Now ask yourself what will happen when she learns that Jon Snow is part Targaryen? Yes, she’ll be grossed out. And yes, I believe she’s going to be pregnant but there’s going to be another emotion there. The Mother of Dragons is going to feel threatened. From all that we’ve seen through seven seasons of this show what’s one thing that we know? That when Daenerys Targaryen feels threatened she does something stupid, which leads me to believe that she’s going to turn on Jon Snow as he has a better claim to the Throne than she does. Thus making Daenerys Targaryen the Mother of Dragons the big bad of Game of Thrones. I know, that’s a lot to process right now. Take a minute because there’s more.


Here’s the thing, Jon doesn’t even want the damn thing. I think once the White Walkers are defeated Jon Snow would totally be content spending the rest of his days beyond the Wall just chilling, raising his child. Once he made a move on Dany that went out the window. Now he’s got to help her fight her war because she’s helping him fight his. We’ve known Jon Snow for seven seasons now and we know that he would never make an underhanded move like this. There is no malicious intent when he courts Daenerys he just feels strongly about her. As soon as Dany learns that he’s Targaryen she’s going to think that everything Jon has done has been done to weaken her. A war in the North that weakens her army. Manipulating her emotionally. Losing a freakin’ dragon. Daenerys is going to be pissed and that’s when you’re going to see the blood of the Mad King come out.

GoT 3

I suspect these last two episodes of Game of Thrones will deal with the fallout of Daenerys Targaryen losing her mind. I can’t decide if she kills Jon or not, although I’m leaning towards yes, and I think her turn to villain will open the door to Sansa taking the throne but that’s a theory for another day. No doubts that the Night King is a problem but when the ashes fall and we see who’s left standing, is it out of the realm of possibility, given family history, that the Mother of Dragons is really who we should have been stressing about this whole time?

There you have it Geeklings, what do you think? Am I completely off my rocker here or maybe, just maybe, am I on to something? Let me know what you think. Do you agree, disagree, or have a theory of your own? I want to hear them so be sure to put them in the comments or throw me a line over at Twitter @iamgeek32. I’ll be back with another Game of Theories column next week in which we discuss the fate of Cersei! See you then and just remember everything we’re doing here is for the Throne!


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