Jon Snow [Spoilers – Ep 10, S5]

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Jon watches as the Wildlings enter Castle Black. His men are not so happy to see so many Wildlings alive and entering the castle.

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Is Jon Snow really?

Yes. Well, at least according to the actor and the showrunners. But it’s pretty hard to believe for anyone who has read the books and is convinced that Jon warged into Ghost to save himself.

The showrunners refer to Jon’s death in the Inside Episode. Plus Kit Harrington gave an interview with EW in which he unequivocally says Jon is dead: “ I’ve been told I’m dead. I’m dead. I’m not coming back next season.”

Already fans on EW’s site are speculating that Kit Harrington and the showrunners are trying to game us.

In the EW article, Kit denies he renegotiated his contract for season 7, a story the Hollywood Reporter ran a while back. (It is curious that Harrington who has become a big enough star to land parts in big budget films like Pompei, doesn’t have any movies lined up.)

Some think that GRRM’s original plan for the ASOIAF reveals that Jon isn’t really dead. If Jon is actually dead, what affect will this have on the war with the White Walkers?

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Thoros of Myr brought back Beric many times. When Melisandre met Thoros, she mentioned she did not have the power of resurrection.

Others have noted that Melisandre conveniently just arrived at Castle Black. Maybe she will finally get the gift of resurrection that she has been jealous that Thoros of Myr has had for so long. (Thoros of Myr raised Beric from the dead numerous times.) As the Wall Street Journal so aptly put it, “Jon is dead, but … resurrection? Right? RIGHT?”

 

 

Jamie Adair is the editor of History Behind Game of Thrones, a website about the history behind George RR Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" novels and the hit TV show, "Game of Thrones."

14 Comments

  • Reply June 17, 2015

    Jun

    I am 100% certain that Jon Snow will be back at least in the books, but very likely not as human.

    • Reply June 17, 2015

      Jamie Adair

      I will be very disappointed if he comes back as a direwolf. I get it from a literary perspective — and perhaps even from a wolf-conservation perspective — but I’ve become very attached to this character (Jon).

  • Reply June 18, 2015

    Watcher on the Couch

    Oh yes, GRRM supports a wolf conservation charity I believe. Although I may be disappointed that GRRM seems to get the dreaded writer’s blog some of the time at least he doesn’t hoard all the money he’s earned like a miser.

  • Reply June 19, 2015

    Chas D.

    If Jon remains dead here, I think it’s actually an interesting move. The likely hero dies, leaving room for the unlikely hero to come forth. It also makes a rather dark romantic point that could be thought about by subsequent generations of Westerosi: if only the Night’s Watch had thought about the big picture like Snow had.

    It also makes the point of Jon Snow’s character to give us a better insight into the Wildlings and the Night’s Watch respectively.

    And besides, we all knew Jon Snow wasn’t going to save the world, GRRM outright said that Bran would be that one. He lamented that he couldn’t get the younger characters old enough as he imagined them being, and finally said “I’ve come to terms with it, if a 12 year old has to save the world, then a 12 year old will save the world” or something along those lines in an interview somewhere (the one where he mentioned the 5 year gap he’d abandoned.

    Jon Snow’s well past 12.

    In the books, I think Jon Snow will get a second life in Ghost most certainly, but the show has reserved the warging talent for Bran only, so most likely in the show he’s likely dead, and after this season I don’t want Melisandre touching anything or anyone. Boo, hiss! I was never a fan of her character in the books, and the show version I’m even less a fan of (though I do agree Carice plays her quite well–stunning actress… who I wish they’d stop undermining with so many pointless nude scenes…).

    And to be quite honest, I don’t want a resurrected Jon Snow or “unJon”–and the warging into Ghost and then back into his body seems like a complicated bit of trickery that’s cheating. In Martin’s world people don’t just come back from the dead like normal, and that feels rather appropriate, so finding a backdoor way for Jon to do that seems rather underhanded and a bit of a cop out IMO. Personally I rather liked Jon Snow for being Jon Snow, and the super duper Jon Targaryen that fans have been fantasizing about for years on end in internet forum echo chambers is rather ridiculous. Not that I don’t think it’s likely he’s Rhaegar’s son, I just don’t see him winning the Iron Throne and marrying Dany and having lots and lots of children–that just feels like a rather hollow end to the series and goes against the nature of the world–i.e. it feels too sugar plums and brightly colored rainbows for this story.

    If he does get resurrected in the books beyond warging Ghost, I hope he’s a rather wild man at that point–dark and unsuited for the company of men.

    Still, I might be wrong, but personally, I’d rather not have Jon and Dany or Jon and Sansa wed (both feel rather saccharine-y). Martin’s original plan of having Jon and Arya together feels better, but still not completely right. Jon’s character I don’t think was made for a family. He might have lovers, but him having children isn’t something I see for him. He’s a character that’s always been noted as being a lone wolf or a wolf apart, I don’t see that changing–if anything his time within Ghost would likely make him more wolfish and a loner. Arya likewise has been associated with being a lone wolf figure, and I could see the two being lone wolves together rather easily, trying to help each other get through the days and horrors they’ve been through and living outside of the rest of society and its Game of Thrones.

    Any further revelations of the character, such as his parentage, can still occur with perhaps a lament from Howland that Jon died without ever knowing, adding to the tragic nature of the story line, with the irony being Jon learns it while being within Ghost or the irony being that he might have been a hero to save the realm… if he’d just been more diplomatic.

    But my end of the series envisions all the likely heroic characters having died or at the very least having left the rest of human society, Dany and her dragons included, in the fight against the Whitewalkers, giving their lives so that humanity might live and continue to forget and play the godsdamn Game of Thrones, leaving only the unlikely heroes to do as best they can and restart the world after the likely heroes have left them to pick up the pieces. The heroes will be remembered in song and pagentry, but they are not for this world.

    After all we were warned that this would come to pass by Old Nan, in a roundabout way. The Last Hero died millennia ago, leaving behind him nothing but non-Heroes to rebuild the world in his wake. That’s after all the implications of the Last Hero being the Last Hero–no other heroes came after him. Likewise we’ll have another “last hero”.

    IMO expect the death of the heroic, expect those deaths to have meaning when they happen, and prepare to have a lot of tissues.

    I know, my opinion will be unpopular, but it is how I view this series.

    • Reply June 19, 2015

      Jun

      I am not worried about a sugary happy ending. GRRM has not given us any yet. I doubt he would begin now. 🙂

      • Reply June 19, 2015

        Chas D.

        A lot of my desires for the ending of the series I think have been formulated from reading too much over at the Westeros.org forums, where everyone is convinced Jon Snow is not only the Messiah but will fly a dragon and have many little Targaryen babies with either Dany or Sansa, and sit the Iron Throne or be Dany’s heir, and everything will be happy because Jon Snow farted.

        Yeah… I probably need to get away from that forum, but it’s definitely made me go: “can I not get the usual crap with different seasoning blends that everyone else is offering in their stories?”

        • Reply June 19, 2015

          Jamie Adair

          As much as I love reading them, I think the forums are ruining my enjoyment of the show and books. I find myself thinking the same thing as you about Jon being the Messiah, the R+L=J theory, etc. All of sudden, I’m not feeling Jon’s death because I’m convinced he will be revived by Melisandre or warg into Ghost, etc. The fan theories are so vivid they ruin my enjoyment of the actual narrative.

  • Reply June 19, 2015

    Jun

    The TV series can do whatever they want, but regarding the books, Martin has said previously (I think I saw this in So Spake Martin collected by one of the Web sites) that ALL the Stark children are wargs. Of course he did not single out Jon Snow, and we now can be certain that Jon is not Ned Stark’s son. Note that in ADWD’s Jon chapters, he dreamed of being in Ghost or being Ghost. The whole point of the prologue of ADWD is to support and foreshadow his warging at the end. Whether Jon Snow will “jump” from Ghost to something or someone else, like Varamyr Sixskins, remains to be seen. I don’t know how obvious he could have made it. Varamyr even mentioned in the epilogue that the moment he saw that traitor boy, he knew what he was (ie, a skinchanger like himself), even though the boy might not realize it himself.

    The TV series made a mistake when, in Season 4, Jojen said to Bran, “No one can [enter another person like he does in Hodor].” Skinchangers can enter another person, but it is generally prohibited.

  • Reply June 20, 2015

    Jun

    It seems interesting that fans on forums tend to assume the end game will be a “battle between good and evil” and then “good” will defeat “evil.” This is a very Christian interpretation. And, because so far The Others have been depicted as “evil” in the TV series, while dragons have been depicted as “good” (or at least controlled by a good master Daenerys), they assume the good fire will defeat the evil ice. Human history also seems to view fire as good as it enabled us to cook food. Nevertheless, fire is also dangerous and destructive, as we have seen in dragons.

    Considering that Christian mythology and symbols are intentionally not the dominant undercurrent in ASOIAF (unlike Tolkien and CS Lewis), I think the Christian predictions of the finale will be wrong. The mythical inspirations for ASOIAF are clearly multicultural, but the strongest influence, IMO, is Norse mythology, which, like many other old mythologies, is not preoccupied by the moral line that separates good and evil.

    It is fascinating how much our popular culture and entertainment today, however secular they seem, is deeply and unconsciously defined by religion, which began as mythology.

    • Reply June 22, 2015

      Jamie Adair

      A big theme, for lack of a better word, in ASOIAF is that things are grey. GRRM has specifically said he didn’t create black-and-white villains and heroes. Many of the characters can be seen from different perspectives. I think one of the reasons GRRM uses so many different point-of-view characters is to show that the justification for war can be seen from different perspectives. That is, the war that the motives for war that seems so wrong don’t seem as wrong when seen through the eyes of Cersei, Theon, or Davos.

      Also, you’re right, the dragons are very grey – it all depends who “wields” them.

      All of this is to say, if you stop and think about it, it seems doubtful the series will have a good triumphing over evil type of ending. I’d tend to put my money on an ending that shows that war is futile – e.g., the Targaryens end up back in power or something. But, who knows? Maybe the people will finally have their day and overthrow the monarchy.

      • Reply June 24, 2015

        Jun

        Very occasionally GRRM have a very bad character, eg, Joffrey and Ramsey. Hehehe. I suppose just to satisfy his interest in writing horror.

        • Reply July 10, 2015

          Jamie Adair

          Smart call. I agree. I love GRRM’s villains. I know we all cringe when they do cruel things, but it sure makes for a good story.

  • Reply June 25, 2015

    Watcher on the Couch

    I’ve seen somewhere that the ending is supposed to be “bitter-sweet”. I thought it was something that GRRM said or is it just a story that has grown with the telling.

    This is a bit off-topic but, Jamie, I hope you won’t stop posting features altogether because of the thieving toe-rags who “nick” your work, though I can understand it is most upsetting and vexing to have people do so.

    • Reply June 26, 2015

      Jun

      GRRM himself has said the bittersweet ending. I do wonder…

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