Sorry ‘Game Of Thrones’ Fans But Viserion Is Not An Ice Dragon

Warning: Spoilers and speculation for Game of Thrones below:

We need to talk about dragons. For such massive creatures, the people of Westeros know little and less about how dragons function biologically. The maesters in the Game of Thrones universe can’t even agree if dragons have genders or how they reproduce. With such vast gulfs in their knowledge, it means the audience is also at a disadvantage. We know the overarching title for George R.R. Martin’s saga is A Song of Ice And Fire. We know the Night King is ice and that dragons are fire. So a logical conclusion would be that Viserion, now under the thrall of the Night King, is an ice dragon.

A logical conclusion. But an incorrect one.

Viserion is no more ice dragon than the bear that attacked Jon Snow and his suicide squad was an ice bear. The bear was undead, just as Viserion is now a zombie. Those in service to the Night King have ice-blue eyes and, in the case of his newly acquired dragon, blue flame. But flame it is. Blue flame burns thousands of degrees hotter than yellow flame. Motherboard points out that the lack of rivulets, puddles, and dripping waterfalls from the remaining part of the Wall as the zombies shuffle through indicates blue-flame heat. But it’s not just the lack of ice breath that precludes Viserion from being labeled as a mythical ice dragon. Everything about him is wrong for the part.

From The World of Ice & Fire companion volume to Martin’s universe:

Of all the queer and fabulous denizens of the Shivering Sea, however, the greatest are the ic dragons. These colossal beasts, many times larger than the dragons of Valyria, are said to be made of living ice, with eyes of pale blue crystal and vast translucent wings through which the moon and stars can be glimpsed as they wheel across the sky. Whereas common dragons (if any dragon can truly be said to be common) breathe flame, ice dragons supposedly breathe cold, a chill so terrible that it can freeze a man solid in half a heartbeat.

Sailors from half a hundred nations have glimpsed these great beasts over the centuries, so mayhaps there is some truth behind the tales. Archmaester Margate has suggested that many legends of the north — freezing mists, ice ships, Cannibal Bay, and the like — can be explained as distorted reports of ice-dragon activity […] Ice dragons supposedly melt when slain, [so] no proof of their existence has ever been found

A true ice dragon is an elegant, deadly creature of crystalline ice, not a heavy sack of decomposing meat. Viserion simply being a zombie dragon also fits within the lore Martin has created for his world. On top of “common” dragons and ice dragons, the mythology of Westeros and Essos also has sea dragons, firewyrms (wingless earth dragons), and wyverns (flameless dragons). Zombie dragons are just another sub-species, which means HBO only has a few more episodes left to bring us a true ice dragon from beyond the Shivering Sea. Perhaps with Viserion as the representation of death and Drogon as the avatar of fire, Rhaegal could somehow be transformed into the embodiment of ice? I mean, it wouldn’t be the most out-of-left-field idea Game of Thrones has ever had, right?