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Game of Thrones season 8 episode 2: Why did Jaime Lannister leave Cersei to join Daenerys in Winterfell?

A reminder ahead of episode two

Jacob Stolworthy
Sunday 21 April 2019 13:28 BST
Opening Credits Game of Thrones Season 8

When Game of Thrones season seven drew to a close, many were left shocked by a huge decision made by Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau).

The season eight premiere, which aired on HBO last Sunday, circled back on this moment as Jaime arrived in Winterfell for the first time since the show’s very first season.

But, why is he there – and why did Jaime decide to leave Cersei (Lena Headey)?

After discovering that she was bluffing when she said she’d send allies to assist in the forthcoming battle against the Night King, Jaime turns his back on his sibling/lover to join forces with Jon (Kit Harington) and Daenerys (Emilia Clarke).

As things got heated, Cersei admonished Jaime – also know as the Kingslayer – for his betrayal in agreeing to meet their younger brother, not to mention their father’s murderer, behind her back and reveals she’s in collusion with Euron Greyjoy and a mysterious group known as The Golden Company in retaining the Iron Throne.

It’s here where she very nearly orders The Mountain to end the life of her brother/lover, something an emotional Jaime himself orders her to do after chiding her for not recognising the threat of the White Walkers. She nods to the Mountain, unable to give the order verbally. On the verge of tears, Jaime looks at his Queen, struggling for words.

“I don’t believe you,” he says before escaping. He rides away as Cersei looks in in visible torment.

With this moment, Jaime finally realised his sister is only looking out for her own safety, as well as their unborn child’s (if she’s even pregnant), and this will likely see the Valonqar prophecy coming true later this season – more on that here.

Going by the trailer for tonight’s second episode, it seems Jaime will have trouble on his hands now he’s back in Winterfell. After all, he did murder Daenerys’ father years before the series began (this family tree might help)

You can find a compilation of the 13 callbacks, book references and Easter Eggs featured in season eight premiere here.

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The opener also included a hilarious reference to last season’s controversial Ed Sheeran cameo, as well as a terrifying death at the hands of the Night King that has people theorising over his true identity (no, not Bran Stark).

Viewers in China were left furious after six minutes of the episode – which broke HBO records – was censored by tech corporation Tencent.

The final season of Game of Thrones continues every Sunday and you can find a ranking of every single character here.

You can find our extensive ranking of every episode – from worst to best – below.

The show will be available on Sky Atlantic and NOW TV in the UK.

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