There is one thing on everyone’s mind going into the Game of Thrones season six premiere — is Jon Snow dead? There are other characters with gripping cliffhangers; what will fate have in store for Daenerys Targaryen and Queen Cersei, and when will Bran return? But the obsession is clearly about whether or not Jon Snow survived the betrayal of his men.
There are many theories in play, and as show time creeps closer, popular theories range from he survived to he is a dead man walking. For anyone concerned that Kit Harington is off the show for good, it is safe to assume that he will still be on the show in some fashion, alive or undead.
— IGN (@IGN) April 24, 2016
The R+L=J Theory
For nearly a year we have waited to learn the fate of Jon Snow and many fans are hoping that he survived the multiple stabbings. It certainly didn’t look good for the Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch as he lay on the ground in shock in a pool of blood. From a storyline perspective, it doesn’t make sense to take the most popular character out of the picture when there is so much we don’t know about him – primarily, who his parents are.
We have been led to believe that Ned Stark is Jon’s father, but there are quite a few followers of the Games of Thrones books that hold the belief that Jon Snow is actually Ned Stark’s and Daenerys Targaryen’s nephew, according to Vox.com. Fans of the Song of Ice and Fire books believe that Jon Snow is actually the son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Ned Stark’s sister Lyanna Stark, which would explain why he looks like a Stark. If that is the case, he would be the true heir to the Iron Throne.
That theory might explain why Ned Stark not only insisted on torturing his wife with the presence of his bastard son but refuses to tell her who his mother is. He could be honoring his sister’s dying wish, a promise that is also a mystery. If Jon is really Rhaegar’s son, Ned was protecting him, as Robert Baratheon has a habit of systematically eliminating any Targaryen in his path.
This well thought out theory is ingeniously based on the actions of characters that are either long gone or have never appeared on the show. This would put a fascinating element into an already engaging storyline.
He Will Warg Into A Dire Wolf
No matter how many facts are thrown around to prove that Jon Snow is really dead, there are those who will remain skeptical until their eyes tell them otherwise. Some would like to believe that by some miracle, he survived the stabbings by warging into a dire wolf, at least that is one of the theories offered by Bustle.com. Bran and Orell are the only characters that can warg currently, but because of the R+L=J theory, some believe that the mixture of Targaryen and Stark blood could make him a magical creature capable of changing his form. This is a convenient theory for anyone who still hasn’t made it past the grieving process and is refusing to let go.
Jon Snow is Dead-ish
Those who are convinced that he is dead (a belief being fed by cast members) believe he is coming back as a White Walker. Maisie Williams (Arya Stark) didn’t deny to The Upcoming that Jon Snow will be back, but she didn’t say in what condition he would be in.
“It was awful, it was really awful. Everyone was so sad about it, and I feel so mean because I speak to people and they’re like “Jon Snow, is he back?” It’s really heart breaking because people are like “yeah, but he’s coming back though”. It’s a great twist. I can’t say that he’s going to be alive…”
Hannah Murray, who plays Gilly, wasn’t pulling any punches, most likely because cast members are sick of being asked about the fate of the character.
“He’s dead, for sure dead. You know the whole stages of grief thing and the first one is denial? I think everyone really needs to move on past that, you can do some bargaining, but then you need to get to acceptance!”
Jon Snow’s fate is truly a mystery because the show has gone past the available Game of Thrones books. Author George R.R. Martin’s last book in the series was A Dance with Dragons, published five years ago. This is a blessing in disguise (although fans of the book might not think so) for anyone who despises cryptic know-it-all comments and whining about how the show swayed from the book’s storyline. Of course, now the show will be spoiling it for forthcoming books.
The Game of Thrones season six premiere is April 24 on HBO and hopefully, all of our questions will answered — hopefully.
[Photo via HBO]