Soon the epic fantasy TV series called, Game of Thrones, based on the novel series A Song of Ice and Fire, will return to the small screen to the sheer delight of all mankind. While the D.B. Weiss and David Benioff have been doing a magnificent job in adapting George RR Martin’s series, there are many facets, plots and characters that have been changed or cut completely. However, when it comes to adaptions there will always be some elements that would have to be sacrificed in order to ensure success.
Game of Thrones has been nothing but exemplary in terms of its adaption and story telling, therefore I don’t really have any qualms on changes that have been made on the show, as the story still flourishes as intended. However, there is one facet/element/plot that has been greatly under stated in the show thus far; the past, the history, and the legends. One of the best things about the books is how the story not only details present situations of characters, but it always flows back into their past and heritage. An earlier time in Westros offers the reader insight, a better understanding and perspective on current events/situations in characters lives.
Robert’s Rebellion is a pivotal plot point in the books, as every book delves a little further into this period detailing various events that occurred at the time, which still holds a high level of importance as the story continues moving forward.
With the TV series squarely focused on present events, a prequel season detailing the beginning and conclusion of Robert’s Rebellion will not only help TV Fans gain some much needed perspective on certain events, it will also give GRRM another year to complete his book series before the show catches up! Quite frankly, that’s the Number 1 reason this prequel series has to happen.
The only question that remains is, will a prequel season keep audiences watching? The Answer is simply, Yes and here’s why.
[box_info]Beware this might contain some mild SPOILERS.[/box_info]
Now while this will contain many new characters we will get to see many familiar faces as well, albeit a little younger. Seeing as how this story takes place approximately 16 years before the start of A Game of Thrones, characters like Ned Stark, Robert Baratheon, Tywin Lannister, Varys the Eunuch, Lady Catelyn, Barristan Selmy and Jamie Lannister will all be present in the story. Of course some of these roles will have to be recast while some good make up could make some of these characters appear younger.
Truthfully, the excitement in the show won’t lie with the old characters but rather the new ones, for instance:
Son of ‘the Mad King’ Aerys Targaryean, eldest brother of Daenerys (Khaleesi) Targaryean and Prince of Dragonstone, Rhaegar is one of the most important and popular characters in the history of Westeros.
Rhaegar will be one of the main reasons to keep watching the series as fans will see that Deanerys is everything that Rhaegar was and yet his everything she wants to be. Rhaegar was one of the fiercest and most respected warriors and leaders in the seven Kingdoms, as even his enemies will attest.
Rhaegar was a tragic heroic figure, a legend, who was slain in battle by Robert Baratheon.
Ned described his youngest sister as being wolf-blooded, headstrong, willful, courageous and hot-tempered. He goes on to compare her to his tomboyish daughter Arya in both appearance and personality, adding that Lyanna probably would have carried a sword if their father had allowed it.
Known as the White Cloaks, the Kingsguard are supposedly the finest knights in the Seven Kingdoms. They are sworn to protect their king and the royal family with their own lives, to obey his commands, and to keep his secrets. Like the Nights Watch, they are forbidden from owning land, fathering children and taking a wife.
The Kingsguard isn’t quite the institution it used to be and it has fallen far from its once great heights. King Aerys Kingsguard was the last of a legendary Kingsguard that comprised of the finest knights the Seven Kingdoms ever seen. Gerold Hightower (The White Bull), Prince Lewyn Martell, Oswell Whent, Jonothor Darry, Athur Dayne (The Sword of the Morning), Barristan Selmy and Jamie Lannister made up this impressive lineup and each one played a role in the Roberts Rebellion.
Howland is someone who holds the answers to many questions that fans have. We know he is still alive, but he hasn’t been seen since Robert’s Rebellion. If anyone knows who Jon Snow’s parents are it’s Reed.
TOURNEY AT HARRENHAL
This is arguably the starting point for the rebellion. It was the greatest Tourney of the time, held by Lord Whent at Harrenhal in honour of his daughter and to boast his great wealth.
The Tourney was the first time King Aerys came out of King’s Landing since the Defiance of Duskendale, which increased his already high level suspicion and cruelty. Varys, the eunuch, convinced the King to attend saying that Rhaegar was just using the Tourney as an excuse to meet and recruit lords to oust him and take the thrown.
It’s here at the Tourney that Jamie Lannister would be admitted to the Kingsguard. Jamie only joined the Kingsguard because Cersei told him that Tywin was planning on marrying him to Lysa Tully and if he was in the Kingsguard they would be close to each other in Kingslanding, seeing that Tywin was Hand to the King. Jamie would soon realized that the King had only chosen him for the Kingsguard as a slight against Lord Tywin, to rob him of his heir, as Aerys was insanely jealous of him. Shortly after the tourney Tywin would resign as Hand of the King and return to Casterly Rock with Cersei. Her plan with Jamie proven to have failed.
The most contentious issue of the Tourney however, occurs when Rhaegar Targaryen (Son of the Mad King, Brother to Daenerys and Prince of Dragonstone), is declared Champion of the Joust and then declared Lyanna Stark as his Queen of Love and Beauty. At the time Lyanna was betrothed to Robert Baratheon and Rhaegar was married to Elia Martell. Needless to say this little stunt caused a lot of unnecessary friction.
THE STARKS GO TO KING’S LANDING
A year or so after the Tourney, Lynna is “abducted” by Rhaegar. According to Robert “he carried her off and raped her”. However, Barristan Selmy believes Prince Rhaegar truly loved her, but that love sent thousands to their graves.
Brandon Stark was on his way to Riverrun to marry Lady Catelyn when news of his sister’s disappearance reached him. With a small contingent he rode to King’s Landing and demanded Rhaegar’s head. Instead, King Aerys had them arrested and called their fathers into court to answer the charges.
Lord Rickard Stark (father to Ned, Brandon and Lyanna) demanded a trial by combat and the king granted him the request. Lord Stark was allowed to armor himself for battle but was then suspended from the rafters over a blazing fire, Aerys choosing “fire” as his champion. Brandon was made to watch with cord around his neck that would tighten whenever he moved. A longsword was placed in arms reach of Brandon, which would allow him to rescue his father. Brandon strangled himself to death while his father roasted. Aerys next demanded the heads of Robert and Eddard. Both were wards of Jon Arryn, the Lord of the Eyrie, who pledged to protect them. Arryn responded to Aerys by raising his banners in revolt, and so began Robert’s Rebellion.
THE WAR OF CONQUEST
On the side of the royals, HOUSE TARAGARYEN, HOUSE TYRELL, HOUSE MARTELL, HOUSE DARRY, RYGER, MOOTON ETC…
On the side of the rebel forces were, HOUSE BARATHEON, HOUSE STARK, HOUSE ARRYN, HOUSE TULLY AND HOUSE LANNISTER. Yes, you read correctly, Baratheon, Stark and Lannister all fought on the same side, albeit the Lannisters only joined in on the last battle.
SACKING OF KING’S LANDING
The Battle of the Trident was the most decisive battle of the war, matching the forces of Robert against the Targaryen loyalists. Rhaegar and Robert met in single combat on the ford of the Trident while the battle crashed around them. Robert slew Rhaegar with a blow to the chest from his warhammer, so powerful that it smashed the rubies right from the armor. After Rhaegar fell, the Targaryen host broke and ran. Robert suffered a grievous wound in the battle however, and gave the command of the army to Eddard Stark. With the war all but won, House Frey declared for the rebels.
Lord Tywin Lannister, who had remained neutral until the rebels won the Battle of the Trident marched to the gates of King’s Landing, claiming loyalty to Aerys and asking to be let in. Aerys favored the advice of Grand Maester Pycelle over that of his spymaster Varys and opened the gates of the city. The Lannister forces then began to sack the city in Robert’s name. Realizing all was lost, Aerys ordered his most recent Hand, the pyromancer Rossart, to ignite the wildfire caches throughout the city, saying, “Let [Robert] be king over charred bones and cooked meat. Let him be the king of ashes.”
Aerys then ordered Jaime Lannister, one of his Kingsguard and Tywin’s own son, to kill his father. Instead, Jaime slew Lord Rossart and then murdered Aerys himself on the Iron Throne.
Gregor Clegane aka The Mountain and Amory Lorch, knights sworn to Tywin and under Tywin’s orders, slew Rhaegar’s wife Elia Martell and her two young children, Rhaenys and Aegon. Tywin wrapped the bodies in crimson Lannister cloaks to better conceal the blood and presented them to Robert Baratheon as a token of fealty.
“We had come late to Robert’s cause,” Tywin said when speaking to his son Tyrion on the matter. “It was necessary to demonstrate our loyalty. When I laid those bodies before the throne, no man could doubt that we had forsaken House Targaryen forever. And Robert’s relief was palpable. As stupid as he was, even he knew that Rhaegar’s children had to die if his throne was ever to be secure. Yet he saw himself as a hero, and heroes do not kill children.”
This earned House Lannister the hatred of both House Martell of Dorne and the population of King’s Landing, this act also secured the marriage of the new king, Robert Baratheon, to Tywin’s daughter Cersei. This act would be the cause of the rift between Ned and Robert, as Ned felt that the children shouldn’t have been murdered and Jamie should have been sent to the Night’s Watch.
TOWER OF JOY
Afterwards, Ned travelled to Dorne to liberate his sister Lyanna, who was held captive at the Tower of Joy. When Eddard arrived there along with six companions, he found the tower guarded by three members of the Kingsguard, including Ser Arthur Dayne. The resulting fight saw the deaths of all but Ned and his companion Howland Reed (Father to Jojen and Meera). Ned claimed that if it weren’t for Howland Reed he would have been dead. Unfortunately, when Eddard found Lyanna in a “bed of blood”, she was already dying as a fever took her strength from her. Before her death, she made Eddard promise her something that he apparently never shared with anyone afterwards. The experience has haunted Ned ever since.
THE THEORIES, DREAMS & PROPHECIES
Ominous dreams and prophecies are big part of these stories and while there has been a few of those quite frankly there hasn’t been enough. Doing a prequel series will certainly allow for more freedom with these and also nudge audiences to pay attention to certain things when the regular series returns the following year.
WHO IS JON SNOW’s PARENTS?
Most fans who only watch the TV series don’t even realize the importance of this mystery, certainly a prequel series would put this into perspective, as its one of the biggest unresolved mysteries of the show.
Ned & Wyalla – Catelyn recalls how with the war at an end riding to Winterfell… meeting Jon and his wet-nurse from Starfall. It is likely that this wet nurse is Wylla, as Ned went to Starfall returning the sword Dawn to Lady Ashara Dayne. King Robert Baratheon recalls Ned bedding a wench during the Rebellion on their way down the Kingsroad from Winterfell. He tries to recall her name, calling her, “Your bastard’s mother.” Ned says her name was Wylla, but refuses to talk more about it.
Ned Stark & Ashara Dayne or Brandon Stark & Ashara Dayne – a popular theory. Ashara Dayne was one of the most beautiful woman in all of Westeros. Many were infatuated with her beauty including Barristan Selmy and Ned Stark.
Lady Dayne was said to be with both Brandon and Ned during the Tourney at Harrenhal. According to Ser Barristan Selmy, one of the Starks bedded her at the tournament and got her with child, although he believes the child to be stillborn. It was also known by many that she was pregnant before she killed herself by jumping from the tower of Starfall. No one really knows why.
After the events of the Tower of Joy, Ned Stark went to Starfall to inform House Dayne of Ser Arthur Dayne’s death and return to them his greatsword, Dawn. Thereafter Ned Stark returned to Winterfell with the infant Jon Snow, whom he claimed as his bastard son, refusing to name the child’s mother. This sparked rumors that Ashara had been the mother of Stark’s bastard, and that the grief of learning that her lover had been responsible for her brother’s death as well as his marriage to Catelyn was the cause of her suicide.
Lyanna Stark & Rhaegar Targaryen – This is the most popular theory of all, as this would make Jon Snow, heir to the Iron Throne, rightful King of Westeros and of course, Daenerys uncle. However, as Jon’s a member of the Nights Watch he loses his claim to the throne. GRRM doesn’t make it easy.
The books are riddled with queues to suggest this paring are Jon’s parents but the three solid clues are; Lyanna laying in a “Bed of Blood” with a fever, this suggest she died from giving birth rather then being killed. The Kingsguard protecting her, Ned tells the three Kingsguard knights that the King and all his children are dead yet they continue to fight instead of yield like Barristan Selmy. The only reason they would continue fighting is to protect the King, which would be baby Jon at this point. Why else would the KINGSguard be there, if not to protect the Kings heir? And lastly, Lyanna’s dying promise to Ned. This is something that haunts him. Given the fact that all the Targaryen woman and children were killed, protecting Lyanna’s secret child with Rhaegar would be something he would carry to the grave.
The only people who might knows the truth at this point is Wyalla, the wet nurse and Howland Reed who survived the Tower of Joy with Ned.
THE DRAGON HAS 3 HEADS
Aegon introduced dragons to Westeros when he conquered it, and dragons were kept and ridden by the Targaryens until the last one perished in the reign of Aegon III Dragonbane.
House Targaryen’s sigil is a three-headed dragon breathing flames, red on black. The three-headed dragon represents Aegon the Conqueror and his two sisters, Rhaenys and Visenya.
We learn that the dragon needs three heads, meaning that Dany needs two more riders for her dragons. Like her great ancestor Aegon, who conquered Westeros with his beloved Older and Younger Sisters/Wives, Visenya and Rhaeneys, Dany needs to find to other riders as well. This has been one of the biggest plot points in A Song of Ice and Fire series as many fans try and guess whom Dany might choose as her riders.
Most believe to think that Jon and Tyrion will be chosen as the two Riders, while there’s some speculation concerning Aegon, Rhaegar’s youngest child and Dany’s Nephew, who was believed to be have been during the Sacking of KingsLanding. However, there’s now reason to believe that he actually survived and has been in hiding ever since.
There’s so many theories and speculation that has been born out of this period, a prequel series will certain bring audiences up to speed while setting up some major plot points that will change your perspective on current events.
What is the Song of Ice and Fire? Who is the Prince that was promised?? Make this happen and give GRRM more time to complete the books!
The world needs a Game of Thrones prequel series. Do you agree??