***Spoiler Warning: This post discusses Game of Thrones events through Season 6, Episode 10, and A Song of Ice and Fire book events and theories. Spoilers***
Isaac Hempstead Wright, who plays Bran Stark aka the new Three-Eyed Raven on Game of Thrones spoke with THR about that huge and long-awaited Tower of Joy reveal in Sunday’s night’s sixth season finale. Among the topics discussed were how Bran feels about being responsible for Hodor and many of Bran’s friends dying (“very zen about it”), his hand in Rickon’s death — Bran sent away his brother and Osha — (“a slight amount of responsibility”), and what Wright thinks Bran will do next (“head south for Winterfell). As for any possible claim to his King in the North title, Wright says Bran’s not really interested in that, and would instead focus on his “über maester” skills to help defeat the White Walkers. Acknowledging that Bran is basically like a third grader who’s been sent off to college, Wright thinks that Bran simply knows he has a very important power and that he must use it — “not sit on it” — so when Meera questions whether Bran knows what he’s doing, Wright responds that he doesn’t…”but I’m here.” That’s a damned dangerous attitude, akin to a kid picking up a gun and waving it around, although it’s possible Bran will learn his power can be used in more helpful ways. Let’s hope a true-born Stark son slows down his instinctive jump-first-think-later approach, because so far it’s been pretty disastrous.
Equally high on our wish list is that Wright’s thoughts about the big Tower of Joy event are nothing more than completely bonkers, because his musings about Jon Snow’s real father will break your heart. While most fans believe the scene confirmed the R(haegar Targaryen + L(yanna Stark) = J(on Snow) theory, Wright thinks there are other possibilities:
When Bran sees his father’s reaction and understands that this is a surrogate child his father has brought up, he thinks to himself, ‘Well, wait, what surrogate children has my father brought up? Oh! Jon Snow! So Jon Snow isn’t my half-brother.’ But we still are pretty clueless as to the father, I think.
…And at this stage, it could even be Ned. There could be a Cersei and Jaime thing going on there.”
Uuuum, no thank you, very much.
Moving right along…
There was another important moment — before the big reveal —
and, it wasn’t quite such a hammer-to-the-head kind of thing. In fact, I didn’t notice it myself right away. When Ned runs into the tower, rushes to his sister’s side, he’s carrying Ser Arthur Dayne’s sword — the one Ned retrieved after finishing off what Howland Reed started — in the first part of Bran’s Tower of Joy vision (seen in “Oathbreaker“). Ned sets the sword at the end of Lyanna’s bed,
where she gives birth to Jon and then dies. That particular sword, called Dawn, is made of “metal forged from the heart of a fallen star” (A Clash of Kings),
significant in this particular scene because of a 5,000 year old prophecy (which Melisandre often mentions) about the prince who was promised — a hero who will save the world from darkness — and it is said the individual (who could be either gender) will be born under a bleeding star. The House Dayne sigil is a sword and a falling star (their seat is at Starfall castle), and there is both blood on Dawn (from the fight between Ned, Arthur and the others when they arrived at the tower), and Lyanna’s blood on the bed. So, Jon Snow was born under a bleeding star, and could therefore be the prince that was promised.
Interestingly, in George R. R. Martin’s books, Dawn was returned by Ned to Ser Arthur Dayne’s sister at Starfall, but in HBO’s Game of Thrones, Benioff and Weiss have intentionally given us this hint. Whether they’re following the particulars of this GRRM storyline exactly as the author set forth won’t be evident until the series returns, but it certainly appears they want us to believe Jon is the prophesied hero who is also said to be “of the blood of the dragon.” (However, a small chink in that particular armor — the prophecy claims the prince who was promised would be born amidst salt and smoke, which sounds more like Daenerys).