With season seven of HBO’s Game of Thrones wrapped and season eight denied us until 2019, I would just like to say one thing: I told you so! Sort of. Jon Snow (Kit Harington) and Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) took their fraught political alliance to a very naked level in the season finale — but a romantic endgame isn’t necessarily in the cards! And despite the giant relationship anvils dropped over the course of a few frenetically paced episodes — with advisors Tyrion and Davos basically dragging out their ‘shipper pom-poms — many viewers are still reeling from Jon and Dany taking this highly incesty step. There’s a lot to process!
First, there’s the storyline implications of the Mother of Dragons and the King in the North doing the Westerosi Watusi. Neither has any idea they’re related, and their seafaring sexcapade was set, ominously and ickily, to Bran Stark and Samwell Tarly talking about their shared DNA. Ew. Jon, the guys revealed, is actually Aegon Targaryen, rightful heir to the Iron Throne. Yes, that throne that Dany has had her eye on for years. You think she’s going to let some cute curly-haired upstart steal that throne just because he bent the knee to her and then rocked her boat? These two can’t possibly have much of a honeymoon phase in their relationship with that truth-bomb ticking away — and their allies and enemies are going to be rocked to the core as well. (Except the Whitewalkers. I’m pretty sure they have no horse in this race.) Tyrion, who had the misfortune to overhear Jon and Dany’s game of moans, certainly didn’t look thrilled. Despite all of his teasing from the weeks before, he’s no doubt worried about what the hookup means for his beloved queen and the Iron Throne — and that’s without knowing that Jon Snow is Rhaegar Targaryen’s heir!
And, yes, succession to the throne aside, there’s the whole aunt-nephew thing. Sure, Jaime and Cersei Lannister have sort of set a precedent for boning your blood relations and even having kids with them, but who’s to say Jon and Dany are going to have a similarly blasé reaction to going all Flowers in the Attic? Jon has always been portrayed as very honorable and traditional. Daenerys had to deal with the creepy attentions of her brother, Viserys, for years — until Khal Drogo fitted him with a molten gold helmet. They might not be gung-ho to get it on again after they learn the truth! And the Game of Thrones fandom is definitely split on what the pair should do once their familial connection comes to light. Their love scene inspired just as many “Ewww”s as it did “OMG!”s — and a few “Enh, they’re consenting adults and they didn’t grow up together” shrugs, too. Beacons of Romancelandia Twitter even weighed in!
Speaking of that certain scene…this is where, as a soap opera fan and a romance reader, I’d like to say, “WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT?” Not only was it completely lacking in a powerful first kiss — always the biggest payoff of the build-up of sexual tension — but it was the most anemic and depressing sex I’ve seen in a while. They were quiet, solemn, almost like they were going to the gallows instead of going downtown! (Check out Grey Worm and Missandei’s union for a comparison.) I half-expected Jon and Dany to roll apart, listlessly stare at the ceiling, and contemplate the human condition ala literary fiction. At least, as author Victoria Dahl noted, there was one bright spot for us to contemplate: Jon Snow’s butt.
It’s safe to say I was a tad underwhelmed by everything else happening in that ship’s cabin — and that I’m very curious about what the future holds. Unlike in romance novels, where we know an HEA is assured — especially once the pair has made love — there’s no way to tell what’s going to happen to Jon and Dany in season eight. Will they survive the revelations that they’re aunt and nephew and that Jon has a bigger claim to the throne? Will they survive in general? I turn again to Victoria Dahl for one thing we can count on: “100% believe dat ass can save Westeros,” she declared on Twitter. “Even death cannot defeat it.”
Originally published on HeroesandHeartbreakers.Com