Before I start talking all about what went on, consider this a warning: there are massive spoilers throughout the entirety of this article, so only read further once you’ve watched Game of Thrones season 8 (opens in new tab) episode 5! Scroll below the picture of a good boy to see the biggest questions we have…
Hello, I see you’re still here. Well, that sure was one hell of an episode. Daenerys seemed to have finally fallen victim to the famous Targaryen madness, Arya gave up her quest for vengeance (so proud of her), and we waved goodbye to Varys, Sandor Clegane, The Mountain, Cersei, Jaime, Varys, Qyburn, and Euron. But we still have some questions about what went on during the massacre at Kings Landing, so let’s get into it.
1. What made Daenerys go all Mad King at last?
Daenerys had her mind set on a bloody rampage. That much was clear as soon as she ignored the sounds of the bells ringing, which signalled the surrender of Kings Landing. Her wanton massacre of thousands of innocent civilians is probably down to a number of things all piling up into one great crescendo that tipped her into madness: Missandei – her best friend – died at the hands of Cersei, Jon turned her down as his lover once and for all, Varys’ execution has made her paranoid about Jon taking the Iron Throne from her, and with Kings Landing surrendering there was the possibility that Cersei might get out of the battle alive. Her foreboding line about ruling with fear, not love, came to fruition in the most horrific way imaginable. Though after her destruction of almost the entire city, there’s something else we need to consider…
2. Is there an Iron Throne left?
Daenerys seems to have reduced most of Kings Landing to rubble, including the Red Keep. If the Red Keep is no more, then there’s no Iron Throne, which means Westeros is without a symbolic seat of power. So where could Daenerys – if she is still going to rule Westeros – going to hold court? The biggest bet is that she would move the capital to Dragonstone, the Targaryen ancestral seat. If there’s a capital to rule from at all, that is. I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a civil uprising against Daenerys… or an assassination attempt in the works.
3. Where is Arya going to go now?
After having thankfully survived the carnage at Kings Landing, Arya met with a mysterious horse and is understandably getting the hell out of there. Having seen everything that Daenerys has done to Kings Landing and all the innocent people she’s killed, I’m betting that Arya is going to go and assassinate the dragon queen. Plus, Melisandre’s prophecy to the young Stark still has to be fufilled: “I see a darkness in you. And in that darkness, eyes staring back at me: brown eyes, blue eyes, green eyes. Eyes you’ll shut forever”. Daenerys has green eyes (yes, I know they’re purple in the book), so it sounds like the Mad Queen might not be long for this world. Daenerys also sounds like she has it out for Sansa, as Sansa was the one who spilled the secret about Jon being a Targaryen. I very much doubt that Arya is going to let Sansa come to any harm. She was riding on a pale horse, after all, just like Death. Which leads me onto…
4. What is Daenerys going to do now?
Considering there’s not much of a city for her to rule, Daenerys’ next move is anyone’s guess. She doesn’t even have the Iron Throne, so first she has to decide where her seat of power will be (probably Dragonstone, although it’s not particularly central). During her talk with Jon Snow she strongly implied that Sansa is her enemy right now, as she was the one to spill the secret of Jon’s heritage. So Daenerys might fly north to question/burn the Stark stronghold, or she could retreat to the Iron Islands to meet up with Yara Greyjoy. Either way she’ll probably have to face questioning from Jon and Tyrion, who are likely horrified at what she did, just like all of us.
5. Is King’s Landing just… gone?
Daenery’s rampage was absolute, and looking over the city from the Red Keep (before that too was reduced to ash) showed us that there’s not much left of Kings Landing. I expect the ruins will be looted, and there will likely be thousands of refugees fleeing from the city as there’s very few safe places to live within its walls. Unfortunately, I think the general populace is the least of anyone’s concerns, what with a potentially Mad Queen having a dragon at her disposal and one hell of a grudge.
6. Why were there green explosions all over the city?
During the destruction of the city, green explosions erupted from a handful of places all over Kings’ Landing. These were stores of Wildfire, but it’s up for debate whether they’re left over from the reign of the Mad King Aerys (who famously screamed “burn them all” during the end of Robert’s Rebellion, referring to the inhabitants of Kings Landing) or were planted by Cersei herself. Cersei isn’t – or wasn’t – above using the lives of those in Kings Landing as bargaining tools, so I wouldn’t put it past her to have planted wildfire across the city and having planned to set it off to kill any nearby Northmen. However, now that Kings Landing is in ruins, we’ll probably never know.
If you can’t wait for the next episode of Game of Thrones, here’s some Game of Thrones theories (opens in new tab) to tide you over until the final episode, or look below to see Game of Thrones without the special effects!