King’s Landing will fall by dragon strike. That much we’ve known for years. But we’ve been wrong about the rider all along. It turns out the answer has been hiding in plain sight for five seasons.
The coming destroyer was unveiled in the aftermath of a devastating battle beyond the wall as, predictably, the Jon Snow’s ridiculous wight-catching mission went horrifically awry.
As jaw-dropping as this week’s penultimate episode of Game of Thrones’ seventh season was, the real revelation happened way back.
We first saw a glimpse of the Red Keep’s shattered and charred ruins in the season two finalé, Valar Morghulis. The High Valyrian saying translates to “all men must die”.
Proud feminist Daenerys Targaryen took that literally when she met the creepy warlocks in the House of the Undying. They showed her a possible vision of her future where King’s Landing is destroyed, right before she got her dragons to fry them.
The popular assumption has always been that Dany will swoop down on King’s Landing for a demolition derby led by her dragon Drogon. Particularly given later visions show a dragon’s shadow soaring high over the city Cersei calls home. That, and Dany is prone to spontaneous shows of excessive force, however much Tyrion might try and tame her.
But here’s the thing. Take a closer look at that vision.
At first it’s hard to make out, but there’s snow on the throne room floor, and it’s falling as Dany approaches the seat of power.
Sure, we knew winter was coming, but we always assumed the war to come with the Night King would come after Dany’s triumph over the Lannisters.
Now we know without a dragon’s shadow of a doubt that it’s ol’ blue eyes himself, the Night King, who’s gonna take to the skies and rain death and disaster down on Westeros.
The Night King secured Olympic gold for javelin as Dany roared in to save Jon and his band of not-so-merry men, spearing Drogon’s brother Viserion in the throat, engulfing him in his own flames and sinking him dead below the ice.
With the fallen steed hauled in chains from the icy depths and reanimated as a giant White Walker dragon, it’s game, set and match. Ice is set to topple the keep.
Lucky Dany has a secret nephew (Jon Snow) who can ride her spare steed Rhaegal in the fight of their lives. Here’s hoping she and Jon can keep their hands off each other long enough before it all gets a bit incest awkward, Star Wars-style.