In our prediction post for the Game of Thrones season six finale, we guessed that Daenerys’ dragons would fight the White Walkers, Varys would join a Dothraki fight club, and Tormund would read the eulogy at Wun Wun’s funeral. Unfortunately, none of those came true (still miss you, Wun Wun), but we got something even better: confirmation that, indeed, R + L = J.
The seeds for the show’s most famous theory were sown this season in episode three, “Oathbreaker,” when Bran and the Three-Eyed Raven went on a vision quest to the Tower of Joy, where the youngest still-alive Stark saw his father, Ned. It looked for all the world that Jon Snow being Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen’s son was about to be sealed as canon, but the episode cruelly cut away, and fans had to wait another seven weeks before they got what they’ve been waiting years for. Lots of (probably) more important things happened in “The Winds of Winter” — the deaths of Tommen, the High Sparrow, Margaery, Walder Frey! Dany’s finally on her way back to Westeros! Bronn had a threesome! — but viewers still seemed excited by R + L = J.
We’ll have much more in tomorrow’s lengthy recap, including why it matters that Jon Snow is a Stark and Targaryen. King of the North!