A Game of Theories

Listen up, listen up!

So you might have heard, but this teeny tiny show called Game of Thrones is just a few weeks away from awakening from the grave and sending us all back to a place of unending misery and despair.

Except not for me, no sir. Because I believe I’ve formulated a way to work out which Game of Thrones characters are on the proverbial chopping block (or literal, sorry Ned), and which are in a current position in which they can’t be killed.

Now granted, this is all incredibly speculative, but isn’t that what you Game of Thrones fans crave? Seriously, all year I’ve had to listen to theories as to what the purpose or role of Ian McShane’s character could be. And then when he lets slip what his character might actually be doing, everyone loses their goddamn minds.

Anyhow, to the matter at hand. First off, I’ve been watching Game of Thrones since it first aired back in 2011, and while I’ve read the first book, I’ve had the plot of the rest of them completely ruined for me through various ways. So, I’m not claiming to be an authority on the subject, I just have an interesting proposal.

I’m proposing that you, the audience, can always work out which characters are incredibly prone to being killed off, through using a few simple steps. I should also add that this method can be used the other way round, to work out which characters can effectively never be killed off, unless their situations drastically change.

Okay, let’s consider two key characters, these being Arya and Dany. What’s the first thing that both these characters have in common? They’re both incredibly strong characters, able to hold their own against anybody else for the audience’s attention, be this a negative or a positive attention either on the page or on the screen.

These two have been around since the very beginning, when everything started going to shit right at the beginning of the War of the Seven King’s. And I think I can also confidently say that the two of them are consistently sources of the biggest debates surrounding the show and books.

Now, consider the locations these characters are in, and also take into account the characters that surround them in these locations. Both are in different locations, with two never actually having come into contact with one another.

Take Dany for example for the next step. Who is she surrounded by? Well currently it’s technically just bunch of guys on horses, so effectively she’s barely surrounded by any characters. Therefore, because Dany is in a separate location to any other characters she can’t be killed off, because no singular character that’s currently with her is capable of holding down the interest of the audience for that certain location.

This can also be applied to Arya, as she’s in a very unique location surrounded by no other characters that the audience have any particular interest in. You think that weird girl that’s kinda her friend could continue making the Faceless Men’s hideout a relevant location if Arya died? No way.

Characters like Arya and Dany can’t logically be killed off, so long as they’re surrounded by uninteresting characters. If the show killed either of them off, it’d then have the task of making that location relevant to the audience through very insignificant characters.

This is really why I believe that Arya had to be in the same vicinity of the Red Wedding for it to take place. If every significant (at the time) character had still been killed off there without Arya being present, we as the audience wouldn’t have had the emotional reaction that we did because no one that we liked would’ve been reacting to the event.

At the core, this theory revolves around the fact that major characters mainly die at the hands of other major characters. Take Ned or Stannis for example. Both died because of Joffrey and Brienne, respectively, because their paths both collided with another major character that had the means and motivation to kill them.

This is also why I don’t believe for a second that Jon Snow is dead. Who’s there at The Wall to make that location relevant to the audience? No one, particularly since Sam was just sent away mere days before Snow was seemingly killed.

Who’s going to be the audience’s viewpoint into the events going on at The Wall? Ser Alastair? I wouldn’t bet my life on it, but he’s the only character of any relevance now left alive at that specific location, and The Wall is such a major location that it can’t simply be absent from the show till another major character arrives on the scene to be the audience’s viewpoint into it.

In short, I’m suggesting that nearly every major location within Game of Thrones is always occupied by one major authority character. If this character comes into contact with another character of equal popularity, then one of them is prone to being killed off, as that location can still be relevant without needing both characters as viewpoints for the audience.

Otherwise, if only one character of authority is in a certain location, then that character cannot be killed off, as this would only leave secondary characters to hold the interest of the audience in those locations.

In this respect I find it quite interesting that Tyrion and Dany may be in the same location for an extended period of time. This could potentially mean that one of them is on the chopping block, as the show doesn’t require both characters in order to make the location of the East matter to the viewers.

Sure, as I previously stated this is wildly speculative, but it’s merely something that’s been playing on my mind with the return of Game of Thrones so imminent.

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