Game of Thrones Season 7 episode 2 “Stormborn”: Will Jon Snow bend the knee?

I have already read 3 different blog posts summarizing the events of ‘Stormborn”, the latest episode of the Game of Thrones. So I am not trying to do the same thing. Instead, let’s take a look at one of the central dilemmas being set up for the next episode – the long-anticipated meeting between Jon Snow and Daenerys.

The red witch , Melissandre appears at the court of Daenerys Targaryen at Dragonstone, and mentions yet again, her prophecy of ‘the prince that was promised’. Missanderi quickly clarifies that in Valyrian the phrase may mean prince or princess. But we remember that both Stannis and Jon Snow have heard this prophecy before. Third time lucky, perhaps?

Having done this magical piece of marketing for herself, Melissandre suggests that Daenerys summons Jon Snow to Dragonstone. Tyrion is pleased at the idea (book-readers will recall the bonding between Tyrion and Jon on the wall) and Daenerys agrees that Jon be invited to Dragonstone. Only her final sentence is somewhat more sinister: ‘to bend the knee.’

Why is this important? Well, first of all, this would make the King of the North another one of the houses of Westeros (Tyrell, Martell and the better half of house Greyjoy so far) to accept Daenerys as its Queen.

But is has a far more symbolic importance.  Daenerys is aiming to echo the deeds of her ancestor, Aegon The Conqueror, (who united Westeros using three dragons). She is probably aware that Brandon Snow, a bastard son of the Starks, was sent to negotiate with Aegon during the time of his conquest. Subsequently his father, Torrhen Stark relinquished his royal title and did homage to Aegon Targaryen. He was known as “the King who knelt”, but his decision was lauded as a pragmatic one – his people did not get eaten by dragons, and “the swords Aegon collected from Lord Stark and his vassals were not twisted or melted or bent”(The World of Ice and Fire). Could it be that we will have a reprisal of that famous scene in the next episode?

1500px-King_Who_Knelt
Torrhen Stark bending the knee before Aegon the Conqueror (by Chase Stone)

The problem is, of course, that Jon Snow, having spent a lot of time among the Wildlings, might be quite averse to ‘bending the knee’. Not only that, he isn’t simply a Stark, not even a Snow, truth be told…. but half Stark, half-Targaryen. Which means he’s probably not genetically predisposed to pay homage to anyone… Though on the upside we can only hope that the dragons take a liking to him if Daenerys tries to burn him alive.

 

https://giphy.com/embed/3og0IwLYKuUp4wrpIc

via GIPHY

 

P.S. The scene between Arya and Nymeria was heartbreaking. If you haven’t seen the touching explanation of the scene from the scriptwriters yet, you can find it here

What did you think of this episode of the Game of Thrones ? Will Jon Snow bend the knee?

Image credit: http://awoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/Aegon%27s_Conquest

 

6 thoughts on “Game of Thrones Season 7 episode 2 “Stormborn”: Will Jon Snow bend the knee?

  1. Thank you for this post, specifically the comparison to Dany/Jon and Aegon/Torrhen

    From a story perspective, I don’t think Jon will kneel – because they’ll want some drama. From a political standpoint, I don’t think Jon will kneel, because he won’t want to commit the North which had so recently seceded and had a lot of turmoil.

    My hope is that Dany, upon facing difficulties with Cersei and her loose coalition, will decide as Stannis did: to earn the crown by acting in its defense. Stannis went North to fight wildlings, I want Dany to demonstrate her power against the common enemy: the Others.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I really want Dany to do that too… but I worry that in that case Cersei might just let Jon and Dany deal with the Others while she waits to fight with whoever wins… or worse still, she might try to attack from behind…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I will say that no he will not bend the knee at first or easily. He will try to keep his power over the North in the upcoming war with the undead. By bending the knee he weakens the bond with the only army he currently has control of. Although if she could make it worth his while (dragon rider maybe?) I can see him having no problem with bending the knee as long as he ends up in a better position to fight the white walkers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I feel like it will very much depends on the way Daenerys treats him.. If she suggests that she will help him, provided he bends the knee… I’m pretty sure he will do it. But if she asks him to do homage before they start negotiating… then I worry we might run into some serious problems

      Like

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