Game of Thrones season 6 episode 10: The Jon Snow twist explained

And how it sets up nicely for season 7

Christopher Hooton
Sunday 26 June 2016 23:47
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As many expected, tonight's Game of Thrones season 6 finale included the Tower of Joy plot twist that will prove pivotal to how the show eventually finishes.

We all breathed a sigh of relief as the series finally showed its hand with regards to the Bran flashback, rather than teasing it for next season.

Here's a recap of what happened in-episode (spoilers ahead):

A young Ned Stark enters the Tower of Joy and finds his sister, Lyanna, bleeding to death from childbirth. She whispers in his ear and begs him to "promise" her something. She then gives Ned the baby, mentions "what Robert will do" if he finds out, and there is a cut between the infant's face and Jon's to show they are one and the same.

While the scene makes it very clear that Jon's parentage is a lot more noble and complex than some one night stand Ned had in a tavern, it held back a few secrets, but we probably know what they are. Let's backtrack...

When Daenerys' father Aerys, The Mad King, sat on the throne, his son, Rhaegar Targaryen, was married to Elia Martell.

Rhaegar, however, wasn’t a faithful man and ran off with Ned's sister, Lyanna. At the time, she was betrothed to Robert Baratheon, who unsurprisingly wasn’t happy his soon-to-be wife had run off with the Targaryen prince.

Instead of sitting back, Robert rebelled (hence Robert’s Rebellion), overthrowing the Mad King and taking King’s Landing for himself. Eventually, Ned found out where his sister was located, at a place called The Tower of Joy (named by Rhaegar, of course).

Fast forward through the fight with the knights outside and we can now safely assume what Lyanna made Ned promise was to adopt her and Rhaegar’s baby (in the books she says "If Robert finds out he'll kill him. You know he will. You have to protect him. Promise me, Ned.") This would make Jon a Targaryen and a Stark. Fire meeting ice. A song of ice and fire. A very potent combination indeed.

Who is Azor Ahai?

This theory, known among fans as R + L = J, is now all but confirmed, and once it becomes common knowledge (probably in season 7), it will improve Jon Snow, the new King in the North's claim on the Iron Throne.

Interestingly, the finale episode also saw Daenerys aim to find a husband/ally. It's possible Jon might emerge as a likely suitor, until they learn that they're related (not that this might stop them - it's Game of Thrones after all).

It's going to be another long wait until next April.

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