Game of Thrones season 6 is quite possibly the last full season if what author George R. R. Martin, GoT show-runners Daniel Weiss, David Benioff and HBO programming president Michael Lombardo are to be believed. There are to be 8 books and 8 television seasons in all; we are now approaching midpoint of season 6 and the 6th book has yet to be published. The word is that seasons 7 and 8 will be reduced in number of episodes.
What this means is that the struggles for the Iron Throne and the true King or Queen of Westeros will finally be revealed within the next 3 seasons.
One of the contenders for the throne is Daenerys “Stormborn” Targaryen. In the most recent episode of Game of Thrones S06E04, Book of the Stranger, her qualifications could not have been more evident. If viewers had forgotten her magical powers as related to fire from season 1, this episode quickly reminded them.
In season 1, Daenerys acquired the title of “Mother of Dragons” when she emerged nude but unburned from the funeral pyre of her late Dothraki husband Khal Drago into which she and her 3 dragons eggs had entered into. All 3 eggs hatched live dragons. Her powers with fire allow her to touch, ignite and withstand flames of intense heat with no harm done except to burn off her outer clothing.
Once again, this past episode in Game of Thrones season 6, she escaped the current Dothraki Khal and his men by burning them and their temple to blackened ash, only to walk splendidly magnificent, barefoot and nude out of the blaze to the immediate adoration and loyalties of all who witnessed it.
Emilia Clarke, who plays the role of Daenerys Targaryen, reported to Vanity Fair that she did not use a body double this time. In the nude scenes in season 1 and season 3, a body double model Rosie Mac had been used for all the nonspeaking scenes, but in s06e04 it is Emilia Clarke all the way, speaking or not.
“That ain’t no body double!”
Background on Daenerys Targaryen
Daenerys was the younger sister of Viserys and Rhaegar and the only daughter of the Mad King Aerys II and his sister/wife Rhaella. The sigil or mascot of House Targaryen is a 3-headed red dragon on a black background with the words Fire and Blood.
The Targaryen’s were the ruling house for centuries in Martin’s mythical kingdom of Westeros, until King Aerys’ eldest son started what was called Robert’s Rebellion. Either in love with, betwitched by or empowered by insanity, Rhaegar kidnapped Lyanna Stark (sister of Eddard who viewers saw in season 1) which led to protests, executions, uprisings and war. When the air cleared, both Aerys and Rhaegar were dead and Aerys’ pregnant wife fled with son Viserys to Dragonstone their ancestral home, where she gave birth to Daenerys in a storm. Lyanna Stark also died, but much mystery surrounds her death and her story…many believing her to be the true mother of Jon Snow (more on this later) who was raised by Catelyn and Eddard Stark at Winterfell.
As Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire” books were written and brought to the small screen of HBO television, the rebellion is over, Robert Barratheon is King, Cersei Lannister is Queen and Eddard Stark is being made the Hand of the King. Six seasons later, King Robert, Eddard Stark, heads of the Lannisters, Barratheons and Boltons are dead, Robert’s youngest son sits the throne, and the battle for the Iron Throne is still being waged between all the major families.
Ser Jorah Mormont, loyal to Daenerys Targaryen and part of the latest plan to escape the Dothraki’s with Daario Naharis told Daenerys many seasons ago:
“you have a good claim: a title, a birthright. But you have something more than that: you may cover it up and deny it, but you have a gentle heart. You would be not only respected and feared, you would be loved. Someone who can rule and should rule. Centuries come and go without a person like that coming into the world. There are times that I look at you, and I still can’t believe you’re real.”
Another magical, powerful lady linked to fire in Game of Thrones is Melisandre, a priestess serving the Lord of Light, called the Red Woman. Prior to his death, Melisandre, played by actress Carice Van Houten was advisor to Stannis Barratheon, brother of slain King Robert and trying to claim the throne himself.
Melisandre’s history in Game of Thrones has her coming from Essos another parallel land to Westeros with magical abilities and the ability for prophecy. Her belief in Stannis as the rightful leader died when he was killed, but her journey to the North and the Wall at exactly the right time when Jon Snow’s mutinous men stabbed him to death, led to one of the most exciting and anticipated magical moments of all 6 seasons of Game of Thrones; bringing Jon Snow back from the dead!
Melisandre, actually centuries old, but looking young and beautiful on the outside has a ruby necklace that glows when her magic is being used. She has seen visions in flames, influenced sacrifices to fire and lit the funeral pyre of Mance Rayder with her bare hands. If she and Daenerys meet and become allies on the same side, they will be unstoppable forces.
Not since the movies about telekinetic and pyrotechnic powers of Carrie (Sissy Spacek) and Fire starter (Drew Barrymore) has there been such exciting fire scenes as what Daenerys gave viewers this week. Possibly the 2014 movie Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) with her super powers brought on by mysterious drugs comes closer to the power of Game of Thrones.
Melisandre’s quote says it best:
“The night is dark and full of terrors…but the fire burns them all away.”
Jon Snow Connection to Melisandre and Daenerys
As we approach Game of Thrones S06E05, Jon Snow is leaving his post as Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch with a small army of Wildings, Melisandre, his sister Sansa Stark Bolton, Lady Brienne of Tarth, Podrick and Ser Davos Seaworth. He and Sansa are headed for Winterfell to reclaim their home from Sansa’s cruel husband Ramsay Bolton.
We also learned in the last episode that Littlefinger is enlisting some aid for them from Catelyn Stark’s side of the family; the Tully’s. All indications are that a bloody war is brewing.
As mentioned above, there may be a connection between Daenerys Targaryen and Jon Snow. If he indeed, is the child of Rhaegar and Lyanna, he is blood kin (Nephew) to Daenerys, and although not showing any magical powers relating to fire himself, he was brought back to life by the Red Lady who is now by his side. As Daenerys and Jon fight their separate battles across the sea, the possibility of them coming together in the future is getting bigger and more exciting.