The peeps at Winter is Coming ran a Small Council session on their favorite fan theories. I will now share my responses to those arguments.
Lexi puts forth the “Tyrion is the Mad King’s bastard” theory, and: nope, still not feelin’ it. Her support for the theory consists mostly in Tywin being a shitty father, which I think needs no fancy explanation. Tywin is so hostile to Tyrion, and constantly trying to convince himself that Tyrion isn’t really his son, because the Lannisters up to that point have been overwhelmingly tall, blond, robust and handsome, whereas Tyrion is…blond. Tywin is a flaming bigot and terrible person, and Tyrion had the poor taste to be a dwarf. Jaime is what he wanted from a son, mostly because Tywin didn’t pay very close attention to his children’s dispositions, abilities and the fact that his beloved twins were fucking each other. Tywin put all his hopes in his tall, capable, handsome, reckless older son, rather than his dwarfish, ugly, clever, hard-drinking younger son. Joanna’s death had a lot to do that. Tywin’s idea of what his family should have looked like has a lot more to do with it. Remember what Oberyn Martell told Tyrion about his childhood visit to Casterly Rock, when Tyrion was a little baby? People were saying Tyrion’s supposed monstrousness (read: dwarfism) was the Seven Gods reminding Tywin that he was not a god. That says a lot about the way Westerosi culture views people who don’t measure up to a certain physical standard.
At the same time, Tywin declared war on the Riverlands in response to Catelyn Stark arresting Tyrion. He did that not because he loved Tyrion, but because Tywin
had to show everyone he had the longest dick in Westeros cannot tolerate any attack on his family, and ultimately, he does count Tyrion as family.
All that said, I’m open to Tyrion being the third head of the dragon. I simply think it’s a lot more fulfilling if he rides a dragon because he’s a clever, well-educated guy who knows how to wield power, rather than because he’s a secret Targaryen.
Dan supports the idea of the twins being the Mad King’s bastards. This one I find a bit more entertaining, but ultimately still unconvincing. Part of Dan’s evidence for the theory is that Cersei is kind of a nutcase, and yeah, she is, but it does not follow from there that she is a Targaryen on her father’s side. Here’s the thing about the Targaryen Madness: it had a lot to do with inbreeding. Aerys and Rhaella were the offspring of brother and sister. Aerys got the double-dose of bad Targaryen genes; Rhaella didn’t. Rhaegar, Viserys and Daenerys are the children of one pair of siblings and the grandchildren of another pair of siblings, and by some miracle, only Viserys got the Targaryen Madness. If the twins are the offspring of the Mad King, then they’re not inbred. However, Joanna Lannister was Tywin’s cousin, which is a close enough relationship for inbreeding to be at least a tiny concern.
However, Dan also supports Jaime as the valonqar, and I’m totally on board with that.
Razor puts forth that Lord Commander Mormont’s raven is a vessel for Bloodraven, also known as the Three-Eyed Raven, now mentoring Bran beyond the Wall. I have no opinion on that. His evidence seems sensible, and I see no strong argument against it, but I’m not getting invested, either.
Katie’s theory of choice is that, basically: Sansa’s last suitor will be a Targaryen, specifically Jon, and they’ll take the Iron Throne together. This one, I think is viable…up to a point.
I can picture Sansa getting married to Jon, for a while. I can picture them ruling the North together, but not on the Iron Throne. I think Sansa’s last suitor will be Sandor Clegane, and her place is ultimately in the North. Jon, too, is at his core a Northerner. And I don’t think he’ll ever fully recover from his resurrection; he’ll have a Frodo-type ending in which he’s technically among the survivors, but can’t ever really get on with his life. But I can see him and Sansa ruling some territory together, for a while.
Last comes Ani, who doesn’t really have a single theory to support, so she revisits the chapter of Dany having visions in the House of the Undying. The visions are:
- Four dwarves with rat faces are raping a beautiful woman.
- A feast of corpses, where many of the bodies were savagely slaughtered, and many of the corpses have cups or spoons in their hands; above them sits a dead man on a throne with the head of a wolf, wearing an iron crown and holding a leg of lamb like a king would hold a scepter.
- Ser Willem Darry at the house with the red door from when she lived in Braavos.
- An old man with long silver hair on a barbed throne in a great hall with dragon skulls, and says “Let him be the king of ashes.”
- A man who looked like Viserys, but taller and with darker eyes, who says to a woman nursing a baby, “Aegon…What better name for a king…He is the prince that was promised, and his is the song of ice and fire.” And when the man’s eyes meet Dany’s, he says either to her or the woman with the baby, “There must be one more…The dragon has three heads,” and he picks up a silver harp and begins to play.
- Pyat Pree telling her the visit was over, and to follow him into a garden.
- The Undying of Qarth, who tell her, “We sent the comet to show you the way (to Qarth)…shall we teach you the secret speech of dragonkind?” But it turns out to be sorcery.
- Viserys dying.
- A tall lord with copper skin and silver hair bearing the banner of a fiery stallion.
- A dying prince with rubies flying from his armor whispering the name of a woman with his last breath.
- A blue-eyed king with a red sword in his hand who cast no shadow.
- A cloth dragon amidst a cheering crowd.
- A great stone beast flying from a smoking tower, breathing shadow fire.
- Her Silver horse given to her by Drogo at her wedding.
- A corpse at the prow of a ship, eyes bright in his dead face, smiling sadly.
- A blue flower growing from a chink in a wall of ice.
- Shadows dancing in a tent.
- Herself as a little girl running toward a house with a red door.
- Mirri Maz Duur shrieking in the flames as a dragon bursts from her.
- A corpse being dragged behind a silver horse.
- A white lion running through grass taller than a man.
- A line of naked crones emerging from a lake, kneeling before her beneath the Mother of Mountains.
- Ten thousand slaves crying “Mother” as she rode by.
Most of these things, we’ve already seen. Some of the visions are history, some are Dany’s memories, and some refer to events that have already transpired in the books. Ani points out that the rat-faced dwarves raping a beautiful woman are a metaphor for the War of Five Kings, and: yes, that works. Why not five dwarves, though? Perhaps that vision refers instead to the fighting over Meereen. I suspect the cloth dragon refers to Young Griff and his peeps, briefly taking power in Westeros. The shadows dancing in a tent could mean a lot of things, but I’m inclined to think it has something to do with Stannis and Melisandre. The white lion in the grass is Tyrion, coming to advise her. The naked crones from the lake, I have no idea. The blue-eyed king with no shadow, sounds mostly like the Night’s King at Hardhome, but then I have to wonder why he’s carrying a red sword. The corpse at the prow of a ship, probably one of the Greyjoys. I’m looking first at Balon.
Oh, fuck, I just found an explanation of “Sansa with a Targaryen.” It’s this here:
In George R.R. Martin’s novel The Hedge Knight, which is set in Westeros, a group of knights compete in a tournament. The names of those knights are, in order of their appearance in the tilts that day: Lyonel Baratheon, Leo Tyrell, Tybolt Lannister, Humfrey Hardyng, and Prince Valarr Targaryen.
Meanwhile, Sansa’s been matched up with Joffrey Baratheon, Willas Tyrell, Tyrion Lannister, Harry Hardyng, and…
While this is a very clever parallel, it just seems a bit too spread-out. I think the link between that set of names is that the families who were in power at one point in history are still for the most part in power at a more recent point. Those who are in power want to reinforce that power. Winning a tourney is a symbolic way to maintain power. Marrying the beautiful daughter of a high lord is more concrete. It simply takes longer for some families to lose power than others.
However! Another thought has occurred to me. It’s probably nonsense, but it’s no more absurd than most other fan theories concerning ASOIAF. Dany’s vision of four rat-faced dwarves raping a beautiful woman actually concerns Sansa! First, Robert Baratheon wanted her for Joffrey. The Tyrells wanted her for Willas, but they didn’t get far enough to make an official announcement, and she never actually met Willas, so that one doesn’t count. Tywin Lannister wanted her for Tyrion, and they got as far as the ceremony. Vicious Aunt Lysa wanted her for gross little Robin, Littlefinger is offering her to Harry Hardyng (who is next in line for the Vale of Arryn), but most of all Littlefinger wants her for himself. Therefore, the beautiful woman being molested by ugly little men is Sansa, and the ugly little men represent the Baratheons, the Lannisters, the Arryns (which includes Harry Hardyng) and Littlefinger all trying to plant their flags in Sansa’s uterus. If she marries Jon (representing the Targaryens), it won’t be a viable match in the long term, but it’ll be a choice she makes with her eyes wide open.
See? I can rock the tinfoil, too. Bow down, bitches!