Warning: Spoilers ahead for “Game of Thrones” season seven, episode six, “Beyond the Wall.”
After a nail-biting battle in “Beyond the Wall” (where more characters survived than we expected, to be honest) the Night King dealt a death blow to one of Daenerys’ dragons — Viserion.
But seeing Daenerys lose a third of her dragonpower, and one of her children, wasn’t the end of the horror. The episode concluded with Viserion being dragged up from the frozen lake by wights with huge chains. The Night King approached the beast, touched its face, and the dragon’s eyes opened again — but this time they were bright blue.
Fans were losing it over what this might mean
“Game of Thrones” viewers were shocked to see one of the dragons go down in such a horrific way.
Does this mean Viserion is now a wight, similar to the polar bear that attacked Thoros earlier in the episode? Or is the dragon now more similar to the White Walkers? After all, the Night King didn’t physically touch the dead in “Hardhome” when he turned them into wights — he merely raised his arms. And does it change the way his dragonfire works?
Back on the second season, when one of Craster’s babies was taken by a White Walker, we saw the Night King touch a baby and turn its eyes blue. Many have assumed this meant the Night King was turning humans into White Walkers — which are totally different from wights.
Since the Night King went through the trouble of touching him, this could mean Viserion is actually a White Walker dragon, and not merely an undead wight (like the rest of the Night King’s army). If Viserion is a White Walker dragon that means he can only be killed with dragonglass or Valyrian steel, not simply with fire like regular wights.
The problem is we don’t know a lot about how the Night King’s magic works. Does it matter that Viserion was already dead, whereas the baby was alive, when the Night King touched its cheek? Are we reading too much into that physical touch, and it’s just being done for dramatic TV purposes instead of intentional magic purposes? And then there’s the biggest question of all.
How will the Night King use the undead dragon?
People aren’t sure what to think of this new super weapon. Can an undead Viserion still breathe regular fire? Or will he breathe ice now? What about steam? Will we see one of Daenerys’ living dragons forced to fight it’s fallen brethren? Can Qyburn build a dragon scorpion that shoots a giant dragonglass arrow?
While we were left with all of these questions and more after “Beyond the Wall,” the biggest question among fans was whether or not Viserion is now an “ice dragon.”
While we don’t believe he is, George R.R. Martin has mentioned ice dragons in his book series before, which could provide some clues for us moving forward. He even published a children’s book in 1980 called “The Ice Dragon,” long before “A Song of Ice and Fire” was born in 1993.
Here’s what Martin said about ice dragons in “A World of Ice and Fire”:
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 […] As ice dragons supposedly melt when slain, no actual proof of their existence has ever been found.
Since Martin specifically says ice dragons are a different species than “common dragons” — which are the type we assume Daenerys “gave birth” to — we can’t take this as proof that the wight or White Walker dragon will breathe cold.
As book readers have noted for years now, ice dragons are also mentioned most frequently by Jon Snow in “A Song of Ice and Fire,” as explained by Redditor LiveVirus here. Since Jon spent most of his time at the Wall, this bled into other fan theories about ice dragons actually living/hibernating inside the Wall, or maybe it simply meant Jon was the “ice dragon” — half Stark and half Targaryen.
Since “Beyond the Wall” ended on this cliffhanger, fans will need to wait for more “Game of Thrones” episodes before we know for certain how the Night King will wield this new weapon. But no matter what, it can’t be good news for the side of the living.
The only silver lining is that we now know an easier way of destroying the army of the dead, since Jorah and Beric pointed out that killing the Night King would also kill any wights he reanimated. Fingers crossed someone in Westeros has javelin-throwing skills to match the Night King’s deadly arm.
So We’ll Have An Ice Breathing Dragon Or…
— Hiram Abiff (@Huey_G_Newton) August 21, 2017
I have questions. Will Viserion spit ice instead of fire now? Will the fire dragons be able to kill ice dragon? How does this work?
— fantasy fodder (@DtownDoce) August 21, 2017