I’ve watched every episode of Game of Thrones. I haven’t read any of the books. The anticipation of this season and the upcoming series finale is palpable. However, after watching the penultimate episode it seems quite obvious how the showrunners are going to end everything. I mean, I guess they could really swerve all the viewers with an out of left field ending, but I highly doubt it.
SPOILERS AND SPECULATION BELOW
Daenerys has turned into a “mad queen.” Sure, the “turn” has been rushed and probably hasn’t quite been earned. I mean it’s not Anakin Skywalker into Dark Vader-level speed, but it’s pretty fast. For most of the series, she was set up to be the savior of the seven kingdoms. However, a turn like this is really par for the course of the show.
If you’ve been paying attention, the good guys don’t always win. The bad guys don’t always either. Ultimately, it’s cunning and ruthlessness that take the day.
From the Starks getting killed when they were obviously the characters we were “supposed” to be rooting for to Jon Snow meeting a nasty end (and coming back), this show has upturned traditional fantasy stories. It’s why the show and books are incredibly popular.
Nothing is ever easy in Westeros. Daenerys and Jon aren’t going to rule as aunt/nephew/lovers. Dani’s turn has sealed that potential “happy” ending. Someone is going to have to kill Daenerys and it’s either going to be Jon or Arya. If I was writing it, Arya would take Jon’s face without killing him, meet Dani late at night and kill her. Jon would take the blame, join the Night’s Watch and rebuild the wall with Bran and possibly Drogon. That would leave the question of who sits on the Iron Throne.
It makes sense that Tyrion would succeed his sister on the throne, but Gendry Baratheon would have a legitimate claim as well. Of course, I’m not sure Tyrion survives the trial that will surely happen at the start of the last episode. Freeing Jamie was a betrayal of Daenerys and even with the Lannister twins apparently buried under rubble, she won’t forgive him.
If Tyrion survives, I could see an alliance with Sansa in marriage and they rule the seven kingdoms. I could also see Jon ruling just long enough to declare the kingdoms independent. Arya will no doubt go off and become an adventurer of some kind, maybe off west on the Sunset Sea. Brienne will be kingsguard to Sansa either in Winterfell or King’s Landing. Greyworm will take the unsullied and Dothraki back across the Narrow Sea to free slaves or join Jon north. Samwell Tarly could get Winterfell or become the new Grand Maester. Davos Seaworth could be on the council and maybe the new Hand.
I think they might show Gendry plotting to take the throne, but I doubt it. I’m sure the final shot will be a sigil of the Night King letting us all know winter is still coming.