Dissecting the vast and complex Game of Thrones phenomenon in an appropriately scholarly fashion is exhausting, to say the least (especially when the Tower’s Grand Maester insists upon assigning piles of reading that challenge the Wall in height). Some sort of outlet was required. To that end, one of the immensely popular Funko Pop! vinyl figures, in the form of everyone’s favourite know-nothing not-Stark was acquired.
In the best Game of Thrones tradition, it was decided that MiniJon would stand as a symbol of the bleak and nihilistic tone of the subject matter under consideration, and that certain visual aids would be created to illustrate this symbolic relationship. Hence, The Many Deaths of Jon Snow.
Death the First: The Ambush
It was a cold, dry morning when Jon demanded the men of the Night’s Watch open the gate for him so that he could go to the Wildings to negotiate after the battle at Castle Black. The dawn slowly scraped over the horizon, so slowly that one could almost imagine that time itself did not move on this dreary morning. It was stuck in place, observing the moment, waiting for a result to expose itself…..waiting for the fate of young Jon Snow: steward, bastard, traitor to both friend and enemy, yet the bravest man behind the Wall.
As he approached, his presence had begun a stir amongst the Wildling troops; some recognised him as the one who had walked among them for many months, others wondered why a crow had the audacity and simple stupidity to approach the real northerners so. Others, still, stood in the shadows, bows drawn, arrows nocked, waiting for him to give them any reason to strike.
Then a sound came from the gate from which Jon Snow had just exited from, leaving what little security he had behind the Wall behind. A bark, a snarl, and the soft patter of paws against the snow became louder and louder as a white figure approached the crow. Ghost had decided to accompany Jon, to not leave his friend and life partner to venture on into almost certain death alone.
Climbing on top of his dire wolf to ride into the Wildling camp, Jon smiled. As he rode forwards, the northerners took this as a threat. Such a beast could possibly not be brought along for anything but a non-idle threat.
They took aim from the shadows, at both beast and man….
Thus ended the life of Jon Snow and Ghost alike.
Death the Second: Mistaken Identity
How is it, one may wonder, that Jon Snow spent months in the wild north beyond the Wall and never once encountered a wild direwolf? For much of his journey with the Wildlings, Ghost was not with Jon at all, and would often run off into the wild by himself. Is it possible that perhaps Ghost was not the only white direwolf beyond the wall?
Jon, armed with a false sense of security, calls out to Ghost during the night as he hides in the rocks. Why isn’t he coming? As his head turns, Jon notices: his eyes aren’t red. They’re black. THAT’S NOT GHOST.
There isn’t even time for Jon to draw Longclaw out of its scabbard before the wild direwolf is on him. Ironic, isn’t it? Killed by the very sigil of his father’s house. I guess winter really is coming.
Death The Third: Deadly Fruit
The Old Pomegranate and his men surrounded the Lord Commander. “For the Watch!” he hissed, as their blades rose and fell.
Death the Fourth: The Fire Priestess on the Mantelpiece
“Valar Morghulis.” George R. R. Martin murmured to himself.
“Valar Dohaeris?” Kit Harrington wondered, his face a portrait of inner turmoil.
Death the Fifth: That Cursed Song
And now the rain weeps o’er his hall…
…With no one there to hear.