Game of Thrones: Mother’s Mercy. AKA The crap all your book reading friends have kept a secret from you since you said, “I’m going to start watching Game of Thrones.”

Seriously though all your friends that have read this series and encouraged you to watch the show have been waiting for this moment to see your reaction (well and your reactions to Ned, the Red Wedding, the Purple Wedding, etc). I’m sure you’ve seen all the theories floating around out there of what’s really going on though, but a lot of other things happened before that final scene so let’s get to those first. (BTW if you haven’t watched the season 5 finale– don’t read this. Actually get off the Internet and go watch it or don’t complain about spoilers).

Stannis and Melisandre

We open the episode to Stannis hearing one thing from Melisandre (It’s great you burned the one person that loved you alive!  See the snow melted!) and another from his men (dude, you’re screwed– everyone has bailed on you– including your wife). I don’t know if they had Melisandre purposefully lead him poorly so she could get rid of him or if she’s just off her game now.

Melisandre runs away though after hearing all the bad news– headed back to Castle Black (we don’t know that at first, but that’s where she shows up later) and Stannis keeps with his plan to march on Winterfell. Cause he doesn’t have much choice otherwise.

Once he arrives at Winterfell though he’s not even given an option to lay siege to the castle, but the come out and meet him and slaughter everyone there. Stannis manages to stay alive, but becomes wounded and can’t get away. Abandoned by everyone he appears to have given up. This is how Brienne finds him and gives a very stirring speech about how he killed Renly with blood magic (which he admits to) and then she sentences him to death. It was all very dramatic, but all I could think was kill him and get out of there! It just seemed like a bad idea to be hanging around waiting for Ramsey to find them (which I’d rather get killed by Brienne than tortured and killed by Ramsey Snow, so he had that going for him.

Differences from the book:

Stannis didn’t burn his daughter, his wife didn’t hang herself, they are in fact back at Castle Black all nice and cozy with Melisandre. Stannis is buried in snow drifts, but isn’t doing too shabby by this point and is working out a plan to take Winterfell (where there is a limited amount of food and too many people there to keep fed for very long).

Jon Snow

Jon has a nice touching talk with Sam (come on– that’s a bad sign by itself– nothing good comes out of happiness in this world). He tells Sam all about what he saw at Hardhome and how he knows everyone at Castle Black hates him right now. Sam talks him into sending him to Oldtown with Gilly to become a Maester. It makes a ton of sense, but just so you know– in the books Sam is long gone by this point. Jon sent Sam to Oldtown just for this purpose with Gilly, Mance Rayder’s baby (she had to leave hers behind), and Maester Aemon (who died as soon as he reached Braavos and heard about the dragons– which was a super sad part of the books). But he’s now at least headed in the direction he was in the books.

Davos is trying to get help for Stannis (who he doesn’t know has been defeated). But then all of a sudden he knows they’ve been defeated because Melisandre shows up at the wall and even though she doesn’t say anything– it’s obvious everyone is dead.

Then Olly shows up and says that one of the Wildlings knows where his Uncle Benjen is and he needs to come talk to him. Other brothers back him up, but it turns out they were just looking to stab him a bunch. Olly delivers the last blow and Jon Snow falls back on the snow with blood pouring out of his back. (Please read this for some reasons that this isn’t the worst thing in the world– probably).

Differences from the book:

First off Melisandre, Stannis’ wife and Shireen stay at the Wall the whole time and she’s been warning him that something was going to happen and to keep Ghost close. In the books Ghost is locked up in Jon’s room so that he doesn’t fight with the other Warg’s animals so that’s where he is right now. Also Olly doesn’t exist, but his steward is a gay male prostitute named Satin, who doesn’t betray him at all. Other than that he totally gets stabbed a bunch and it looks like he might be dead.

Sansa

Sansa manages to escape her room to put the candle in the tower to call for help (which she manages to do just after Brienne turns away from watching), but drops her corkscrew on the way out of her room. It might just be me, but that looks like a handy weapon to keep a hold of. Myranda finds her wandering about and threatens her with a bow and arrow that the only part of her that is needed is her reproductive organs. Right before Myranda shoots Reek (aka Theon) pushes her to the side and before she can then attack him Theon pushes her over the wall where she falls to her death. (Yay Theon!)

They hear Ramsey’s return and begin to panic so of course go to the edge of the castle and jump into a snow drift– as you do. Cause that’s not a bad idea at all.

Differences from the book:

Well as you know the biggest one is that Sansa is way far away in the Eyrie, but Theon does help save the fake Arya from Ramsey Bolton and does jump off the castle into a snow drift. He breaks his ankle in the process, but gets picked up by some of Stannis’ crew (who also have his sister) and he begins to become himself again.

Sansa and Theon from episode 5x 10.

Arya

Meryn Trant shows us that he’s an even bigger scumbag than we first expected and disguised as a child prostitute she murders him violently. She’s caught by Jaqen H’ghar when she’s putting the human mask back and it appears that he kills himself to atone for her actions. The girl then turns into Jaqen and Arya begins to pull the faces off of the body until she gets to her own. Then she goes blind. My theory on what we just saw there is that he never drank the poison, but gave it to her and that was all an hallucination.

Differences from the book:

Ahh this is all out of order, but she does kill Meryn Trant and she does go blind, so just roll with what is going on. It’s mostly correct.

Jamie and Bronn

The Dornish people are once again poorly written and overly sexualized. Jamie admits to Myrcella that he’s her father and she’s says, ” Oh I’m totes cool with that dad– I think it’s awesome you had sex with your twin sister” or something like that. And then she dies. Cause that’s what people do in this show. She was killed by the goodbye kiss with the same poison that Bronn was infected with. We then see her killer take the antidote for herself– all while all of the sand snakes are in see through dresses– because why not? Boobs.

Differences from the books:

Too many to list– none of this crap happened.

Meereen 

Grey Worm is wearing adult diaper pants and they all make the best decisions ever made in the history of this show (which can be scary as I said earlier). Tyrion, Grey Worm and Missandei will stay behind and rule in Dany’s stead and Mormont and Daario will go out to search for their lost queen. There is a lot of snark and awesome one liners here. I think Dany will be happy when she gets back. Tyrion watches them ride away and then all of a sudden Varys shows up! He shows that he has more things up his sleeve. This storyline is going swimmingly– which once again makes me nervous.

With the Direwolf CGI team drastically underutilized, we have only Drogon left to properly express our collective exhaustion with this season of Game of Thrones. 

Go away Mom! I’m sleeping!

Drogon is hurt and Dany is clueless how to control him (come on and warg!) so she goes for a walk after giving up on him (that’s a good idea right?) While on her walk a bunch of Dothraki surround her. Dothraki who for some reason are behaving more like American Indians from old movies than the nomadic people of previous seasons, but oh well.

Differences from the books:

Tyrion isn’t around yet in this capacity, and Dany starts her period– and has less clothes on. Other than that it’s about right.

Cersei

She has finally given in and “confessed” to some of her crimes in hopes that she’ll be released. She denies the others so she will still have to go to trial. And then the High Sparrow drops the bomb that she’s going to have to walk back to the Red Keep, naked, shaved, and doing a serious walk of shame.

They then use this time to show her naked a bunch– oh and to show a bunch of other people naked. Because it’s HBO and that’s what they do. (To be fair that all happened in the books too). The nuns evidently don’t own scissors so give her a rather painful razor cut (I also get my hair cut with a razor, but it tends to turn out better than this).

After a very embarrassing and painful walk she finally ends up at the Red Keep where she does get covered up, but she has to face her enemies naked and vulnerable. This is going to be something that will be hard for her to get over. The big thing you need to notice though is the new member of the Kingsguard. That would be Ser Robert Strong who has vowed to not speak until all the Grace’s enemies are defeated, but in reality it’s the Mountain in zombie form. He’s been resurrected by Qyburn and is their (his and Cersei’s) secret weapon.

Differences from the book:

Not much.

 So we have so many unanswered questions that won’t be answered until next year– or if by some miracle GRRM finishes book 6 before the new season. Riiiiiight.

I was sad about The Game of Thrones Season 5 Finale and then I read this. . .

That clickbait title is for all four of my brothers– if no one else thinks it’s funny– they will. Can you do clickbait ironically? I’m going to assume so. Seriously though– don’t be sad, I bring hope. All is not lost. Everyone is (probably) not dead.

Overall HBO has done a great job of translating George R.R. Martin’s very long, very detailed, sometimes rambling book series to screen. However, they have left out one very important detail that ties the story together. This post will contain some spoilers– possibly (since the show has deviated away from the books some things I think are spoilers may not ever show up). My goal is not to ruin big plot points, but make events that are about to happen and what has already happened make more sense. I will mark these parts with spoiler warnings, but there is one thing you have to know to understand what I’m about to say. So I’m about to explain R+L=J. If you don’t know what that means already and have no desire to know more about Jon Snow, then stop reading now.

Who is Jon Snow?

OK so Jon Snow’s parentage is something that, as a TV viewer you might assume is just what it seems. That Ned Stark came home from war and brought a bastard child back with him. Catelyn asked about Jon Snow’s mother at one point and Ned evidently lost it and told her to never as about Jon’s mother again. There were rumors that his mother was a few different women, from washerwomen to another noble’s child. Ned told Jon that they would talk about his mother when he returned from King’s Landing (yeah about that. . .) so the one person we know for sure knew of Jon’s parentage is dead and, although I think Howland Reed knows as well, that isn’t known for sure.

I could go on and on about all the possibilities, but the reigning theory (that I also believe) is that Rhaegar didn’t kidnap Lyanna Stark, but that they ran away together. King Robert talks to Ned about how Lyanna was taken and raped by Rhaegar, but if they ran away together then everything was consensual and it is very possible that Lyanna became pregnant and gave birth to a baby (a baby born of fire and ice— dum dum dummmmm). Lyanna is known for saying “Promise me Ned” on her deathbed, so perhaps she was securing his promise to keep Jon Snow’s ancestry a secret and to raise the baby as his own.

That’s all I’m going to go into that though— there are pages and pages on the Internet arguing for this theory and if you need more info– Google is your friend.

Why is his parentage important?

Because theories, prophesies and stuff. Keep reading– I get to that.

The Prince that is Promised

Rhaegar becomes obsessed with the prophesy of the Prince that was Promised. He believes that this prince will be born from his bloodline. The prophesy is very old so this is something that people have been waiting on for a long time (also it’s been a long time since White Walkers were up and about so. . .). Some of the signs of the advent of the Prince that was Promised are:

A bleeding star (which might lean towards Dany being the Prince(ss) because she was reborn during the red comet), the prince is the blood of the dragon (so this works for both Dany and Jon), born in smoke and salt (Dany was born during a violent storm surrounded by the sea– and then again when she burned her dead husband, her witchy midwife and walked among the flames herself; Jon Snow was born during battle when Ned was “rescuing” Lyanna from the Tower of Joy in Dorne (near the sea)), return of dragons (OK this leans towards Dany a lot), and “the dark eye” falls upon them– no not Sauron. The dark eye could be many things including the evil beyond the wall or the witches that are giving Dany crap.

Azor Ahai

Azor Ahai is a hero from history that had a sword called Lightbringer (that he made by cooling the metal off in his wife’s heart– nothing says “I love you” like stabbing your wife in the chest with a molten sword). He did all kinds of awesome crap and defeated the Others (yeah those guys), but it was prophesied that he would be reborn. Melisandre has been working under the assumption that Stannis is Azor Ahai. She thinks he’s Azor Ahai because he is from Dragonstone, but I feel like that’s a weak reason. She’s also seen it in her fires, but here lately (in the books) she has been asking the flames to see Azor Ahai, but “all she can see is snow.”

There are some signs for this hero that overlap with The Prince that was Promised including the red comet. It’s said that after “the long summer” this hero will return to fight the Others and will wield Lightbringer. Melisandre uses the terms The Prince that was Promised interchangeably, but it’s not for sure that these are the same people.

That whole Oath issue

So what if Jon Snow really is either of these people. He’s sworn to serve the Night’s Watch until death. So even if he is a Targaryen prince and the savior of the world he can’t break his vows to the Night’s Watch. Welp that’s where Bowen Marsh and some other black brother’s come in. HERE ARE SOME HUGE SPOILERS if you haven’t watch the season finale. So go away if you have no desire for such.

The brother’s of the Night’s watch are super unimpressed with pretty much everything Jon has done while he has been Lord Commander. So when he decides to march on Winterfell to try to save his sister (who isn’t really his sister, but he doesn’t know that yet) the guys aren’t super excited about that. So Bowen Marsh and some others stab Jon Snow and it appears that he’s dying. Stay with me here though that’s a good thing. To be released from his oath to the wall honorably he would have to die. Melisandre is at the wall (in the books and at the last minute in the show) and her religion is known for raising people from the dead (Catelyn Stark was one of those– but that’s been left out in the show). So he could be revived by Melisandre and then go save the world by being Azor Ahai.

Also since he’s a Targaryen his funeral pyre might awaken his dragon blood somehow (with the help of Melisandre’s blood magic) and he might have a scene very similar to Dany’s funeral scene when her dragons were born.

But what about Dany?

So many of the signs could also apply to Dany as well. So what do I say about that? The Dragon has three heads. So Dany has her three dragons and they all need riders. She has Drogon, I think Jon’s dragon is Viserion (cause it’s all white and stuff), and then they have a spare (Rhaegal) to be ridden by a yet to be determined Targaryen. (Or perhaps just a yet to be determined badass– come on Arya– no I don’t really think she’ll get one, but it’d be awesome).

So Keep Hope!

So don’t worry– Jon Snow may be stabbed and dying in the snow, but I think he’s calling out to his dragon mentally (he’s searching for Ghost, but he’s locked away so he’s actively trying to warg with something) and his dragon (who is now free) will come and find him at the wall. This will bring Dany and Jon together (and Jon can teach her how to warg) and then they can set fire to all the bad guys and ride off into the sunset on their dragons. While holding hands. Right?

Seriously though. I do think they will end up on the same side and rain down terror upon all the people/monsters that really know nothing.

I hope this help you in your despair about Jon Snow. I don’t think he’s really dead, or at least not permanently dead.

Now if George R.R, Martin would hurry and finish the next book so I can be proven right or wrong.

Every Game of Thrones fan right now.

Just so you know:

Kit Harrington is stating that Jon Snow is really dead, but he could still be really dead, but still going to be returned. I also wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t focus a lot on Bran next season (remember him?) and going into some of the historical events that we’ve only heard about up to this point (Bran can look through time through the weirwood trees). Then finally reveal what’s going on with Jon late into season 6.