9 'Game of Thrones' characters for whom the TV show proved to be more fatal than the books
We always say that George RR Martin is a brutal man, but on this occasion the show-makers David Benioff and DB Weiss manage to ace him!
Now that the fifth season of 'Game of Thrones' is over and has been put on the shelf for binge watching along with rest of the seasons, let us spend a moment in mourning for those characters who didn't know how short-lived their characters were going to be in the show. Well, they can take some solace from the fact that they are still alive in the books written by George RR Martin. Till now, we mean.
The next in line to the deceased king Robert Baratheon, met his end in the hands of none other than the gallant Brienne of Tarth. She meets him in the woods of Winterfell when Stannis has already lost the battle against the Boltons. Brienne had a long standing grudge against Stannis for killing Renly Baratheon, the rebel brother of Robert's, who had decided to take the throne for himself after Robert’s demise.
While we aren't really upset with this death, in the books, Stannis is nowhere close to his final breath. Yes, he has helped the Night's Watch win the battle against the wildlings, has taken refuge in Castle Black and has also started marching towards Winterfell to take it from the Boltons, but he has not lost, yet. However, his army is dwindling because winter has come and they may be headed the way TV Stannis has.
Not much is known about Lady Selyse except that she is the most ridiculed woman of Westeros, with 'manly' and 'hairy chin' being words used to describe her. Selyse, wife of the uptight Stannis Baratheon, is shown as a religious fanatic of the Lord of Light, so much so she lets her own daughter get burned alive as a sacrifice. But she realizes her humongous folly mid-act and is so consumed by guilt and horror, that she hangs herself.
In the books, there isnt much plot to her character but hey, she's alive!
The violence loving swordsman who forms a part of the Kingsguard, gets his eyes and face stabbed by Arya Stark in the season 5 finale. He was the last remaining name in the Stark girl’s death list and she gets to do it herself in the show.
In the books, this horribly twisted man is very much alive, observing the various follies being committed by the significant people of King’s Landing from close quarters.
Princess Myrcella Baratheon, the second child and only daughter of Queen Cersei Lannister with her twin brother Jaime, was sent off to Dorne to maintain diplomatic relations with the Lannister’s least favourite family. There, she is betrothed to marry Prince Trystane Martell when they come of age. In the show, Jaime and Bronn go to save Myrcella from a grieving and ruthless Ellaria Sand, who has lost her partner Oberyn to a skull shattering combat in King's Landing last season. While the rescue mission is almost successful, the Dornish woman poisons Myrcella's mouth with a kiss full of venom and by the time the girl is on the ship, she starts bleeding to her death.
In the books, this delicate young princess is kidnapped by Princess Arianne Martell, daughter of Prince Doran of Dorne, in hopes to make her the queen of Westeros. The plan goes awry, however, and Myrcella is severely injured in the kidnapping. She survives, but she loses an ear and is hideously scarred.
Now, where do we start about this utterly cute little girl who was told just a few episodes ago that she was her father's universe? The only daughter to Stannis
Baratheon, Shireen is a voracious reader and wise beyond her years. The dreaded disease of greyscale had left her scarred when she was an infant, thus, not making her a favourite with anyone except the Onion knight, Ser Davos Seaworth. This season of GoT saw Shireen asking her dad what she could do to help him win the battle; little did she know that she would be taken to the funeral pyre and burned alive as the red priestess Melisandre saw a vision that this sacrifice would help Stannis win the war against the Boltons.
While the books still have her safe and alive, the makers of the show and the author have claimed that the story is heading this way in the books too. That hurts twice as much.
Ser Barristan Selmy
The white haired, wise Kingsguard veteran Barristan Selmy traveled the world to be with Daenerys Targaryen as her oldest and wisest counsel, leaving psycopath like boy king Joffrey and his insults behind him in King's Landing. In the show, Selmy is seen advising Daenerys that her sense of justice must be coupled with compassion in one scene and then rushing in the next, to an alley where the Unsullied and the Sons of Harpy are embroiled in a brutal fight. Selmy goes down bravely after fighting endless number of the masked assassins. In this fight, we almost lose our favourite Unsullied, Grey Worm, but his death is for another day.
In the books, the old braveheart is not only alive, but very much a part of the bigger plot when Daenerys disappears riding on her dragon. Infact, he launches a coup against her husband, Hizdahr zo Loraq and rules Meereen in her stead as the Queen’s Hand until she returns. So far, so good.
Hizdahr zo Loraq
This Ghiscari noble from one of the great houses of Mereen gets lucky in both, the show and the books, as he gets the prizest catch; he is engaged to the Mother of Dragons, Daenerys, in the show and is married to her in the books. The open rebellion at the fighting pit sees Hizdahr get brutally stabbed by the Sons of the Harpy, probably because they feel he is a traitor to their city for getting engaged to the invading queen.
In the books, however, he has a more menacing presence. He is married to Daenerys to keep the peace going in the city. But Hizdahr soon starts to scheme and tries to take control of Mereen after the disappearance of Daenerys, even as Khaleesi loyalists Grey Worm and the Unsullied refuse to take orders from him.
The King beyond the Wall has a good game going in the books. Alas, his adventures have been cut short by the show makers. Mance Rayder had marched towards the Wall with his enormous army of wildlings against the Night’s Watch in the last season, only to be defeated and taken prisoner by the Watch and Stannis Baratheon. He is then asked to bend the knee for Stannis but as he refuses to do so, he is sentenced to be burned alive. Jon Snow shoots an arrow through his heart to shorten the pain Mance may have gone through.
Mance Rayder has however escaped this morbid end in the books, till now that is. While Stannis orders Mance to be burned alive, Jon discovers that the priestess
Melisandre has used magic to disguise Rayder as a wildling, thus escaping execution. Lord Commander Snow then orders Mance to rescue Arya Stark (not knowing the girl is actually Jeyne Poole) in Winterfell. Mance is partly successful in his job but is captured by the end, with his fate now unknown.
This one, we don’t really want to talk about. Because that way, we can be in denial, right? Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch, Jon Snow was seen taking one difficult decision after the other in this season of Game of Thrones; from shooting an arrow through Mance Rayder's heart while Stannis wanted him burned alive to going north of the Wall to bring back the wildlings who had fled after their defeat. His decisions do not go down well with his brothers, especially Ser Allison Thorne who already hates Jon’s guts. So by the time Jon came back from one of the most mind blowing battles ever seen in GoT history (Episode 8, with the White Walkers) there was a mutiny in place. Jon was stabbed again and again and again, till there was blood of our dearest Snow in the snow.
Unfortunately, the story in the books go similarly and the last chapter talks about daggers coming at a very weak Jon from all sides. But at least, we didn’t know if all the daggers met their target. The show puts that thought to rest. And with that RIP Jon Snow.
PS: We will continue to live in denial about this death until someone tells us who his mother was.
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