SPOILER ALERT! Game of Thrones season 6 (BUT THE TEASER’S PRETTY OBVIOUS)
The first teaser photo for Game of Thrones Season 6 (due out April, 2016) has sent fans into a frenzy (euphemism) because…Jon Snow is back. Or so it looks. There’s a bleeding eye thing going on in the promo pic but the other than that, the dude looks as un-corpse-like as anyone living in a land of never-ending ice, snow and White Walkers on dead horses (and packs of pale spiders big as hounds – if the novel’s Nan talks true).
Whilst George R.R. Martin’s latest Thrones instalment, A Dance With Dragons 2: After the Feast, left the fate of Jon Snow ambiguous – punched, stabbed and face first in the snow but possibly alive; the TV version didn’t leave much room for hope – stabbed in the heart (right?), looking glassy eyed and pretty darn dead. But HBO’s teaser suggests JS is alive (plus he’s been spotted on set – ooooh). The big question is, “WTF”? Maybe he was wearing a bullet proof vest…oh wait – OK; so maybe that biyatch Melisandre has called on her dodgy fire god to resurrect him and now he will have to spend a life in servitude to Her Royal Skankyness spawning demon children who will be sent forth to murder anyone who makes claim to the throne of Westeros. In which case, dear Jon; you are better of D.E.A.D.
One of the best things about Game of Thrones is that it does not pander to audience sensibility. Usually. Characters are massacred, families obliterated and dynasties destroyed in the name of truth; in ode to a mythology greater than ‘what the fans want’. Of course Robb Stark was no Jon but still…killed on your wedding day along with your wife, unborn child, mom, wolf and most of your crew; it’s harsh. But Jon Snow? – That is hardcore.
The thing is…life is hardcore. People die. People we love. People who don’t deserve to. Life is messy. It’s dark and full of pain. But it’s also beautiful and is made more so when juxtaposed with the agonising chaos that consumes existence. When we’re presented with the truth of life’s brutality we remember what we have and that we need to treasure every moment of it – we need to live and love passionately because life is a magical, fleeting gift.
Bringing Jon Snow back robs us of the chance to remember that life is precious.
It deprives the mythology of an ultimate truth; that people have the propensity for great evil. Game of Thrones exposes the human condition as a complicated assimilation of good and bad, and through a myriad of love-’em-hate-’em-all-at-once relatable characters the show calls on its audience to be vicariously accountable for its evil. Jon Snow’s death, which is meted out in a gust of pride, anger and vengeance, is a picture of humanity at its worst and bringing him pack to life mitigates the impact of this statement.
We live in a world perforated with information and opinion, which makes truth a hot commodity and so when TV comes along and dishes it to us in spades, we need to grab on and pay attention rather than whinge and whine when our favourite character gets taken out!
Jon Snow must die.
In the name of beauty.
In the name of truth.
Unless he comes back as a zombie. That’d be cool.