If Season 8, Episode 4 of Game of Thrones proved anything, it’s that Daenerys Targaryen is well on her way to becoming the Mad Queen. If that’s going to happen, who will be powerful enough to stop her? The answer may still be Jon Snow, but probably not as the Azor Ahai.
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With just two episodes left, there’s still a chance for Jon to become the new Night King, and an intriguing theory suggests Episode 4, titled “The Last of the Starks,” helped pave the way for this major twist to happen in Season 8.
Warning: Spoilers for Game of Thrones Season 8 up to Episode 4 ahead.
The Night King was only recently killed by Arya, and fans have already speculated that, even though we saw him die onscreen, we haven’t seen the last of him yet. However, it’s also possible that another could take the Night King’s place, and it’s looking more likely that this destiny might fall to Jon.
This isn’t the first fan theory to argue Jon would become the new Night King, so he could raise the army of the dead once more to defeat Cersei. Though they were burning the dead lost during the Battle of Winterfell, redditor u/bossyrossy23 suggests that Episode 4 further supports Jon’s transition into the Night King.
“Something tells me Dany will make quick work of Cersei once the battle happens,” they write, “but in the midst will turn mad (she’s already well on her way). Once she finally snaps, the only way to beat her will be for Jon to turn into the Night King and defeat her.”
Though many don’t want it to happen, Game of Thrones has definitely been dropping anvil-sized hints about Daenerys’ turn toward madness. She was devastated and angry after the Mountain killed Missandei, her most trusted advisor and friend. Coupled with the death of most of the Dothraki, the loss of Rhaegal, and her issues with Jon Snow, her Mad Queen trajectory is looking more and more likely.
U/bossyrossy23 adds that Jon’s interactions with Tormund and Ghost may have been the biggest evidence so far of his coming change into the Night King. Setting out for King’s Landing, Jon says his goodbyes to Tormund and Ghost, the former saying Jon “has the true North” in him.
Could that be foreshadowing Jon’s transformation into an ice zombie? Or is Tormund simply suggesting that Jon will return North beyond the wall eventually? Either way, it could mean that he becomes the Night King eventually.
Of course, turning Jon into the Night King is another issue entirely. Bran is the only one who knows how the original Night King was created, but at the moment, these two characters are on opposite sides of the continent. So it’s unclear how Bran could get the information to Jon or convince someone to stab the King in the North through the heart with a piece of obsidian.
Then again, considering some of the recent gaps in logic in Game of Thrones Season 8, it’s not entirely impossible either. At the very least, it would make for a pretty huge twist.
Game of Thrones Season 8 airs Sundays at 8 p.m. Eastern on HBO.