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August 21, 2017updated 08 Sep 2017 11:59am

Goodnight, sweet prince: an obituary for [spoiler] on Game Of Thrones

By Jack Rear

If you’re reeling from what just happened on Game Of Thrones then we absolutely feel that. It’s okay. Take all the time you need.

In fact, while you’re recovering, let’s take a hot sec to share a big ol’ spoiler warning! If you have not seen the penultimate episode of Game Of Thrones’ seventh season, do yourself a favour and read no further.

There have been few Game Of Thrones deaths more shocking than the one we saw tonight – trust us, you do not want it spoiled.

**Major spoilers below**

Now, let’s talk about the beautiful soul we lost on the show this evening.

We’re not talking about Benjen Stark or Thoros of Myr. Let’s be fair, having spent a grand total of six episodes with Benjen and 10 with Thoros, we weren’t exactly close to either of the characters.

No, the real tragedy of tonight’s episode was the loss of Daenerys’ dragon.

If you weren’t paying close attention you might have missed dragon it was. In fact, unless you’re a huge fan of the show’s lore, you may have forgotten what Daenerys’ dragons names even are.

The one who died tonight was Viserion. Though the dragon’s name was never actually said aloud in the episode, the captions confirmed that it was he who perished.

Who was Viserion?

Viserion first appeared on Game Of Thrones in the very first episode.

Well, at least his egg did. The egg was presented to Daenerys as a wedding present from Illyrio Mopatis.

He was a wealthy trader from Pentos who sheltered Daenerys and her only living older brother, Viserys.

Upon her marriage to Khal Drogo, Illyrio presented Daenerys with three dragon eggs. He believed them to be petrified; merely a beautiful gift not capable of hatching.

After travelling with the Dothraki and her husband Khal Drogo, Daenerys found a rift forming between herself and Viserys.

After he was killed by having molten gold poured on his head, Daenerys was alone with the Dothraki.

When the Dothraki sacked a Lhazareen village, Daenerys saved a local woman called Mirri Maz Duur from being raped.

Daenerys hoped that Mirri would help her deliver the child she was pregnant with.

Later, Daenerys’ husband Khal Drogo was injured in battle. When the cut became infected Drogo found himself on the verge of death.

Daenerys enlists Mirri’s blood magic skills to keep him alive.

Unfortunately, Mirri Maz Duur was looking for revenge for the attack on her village. The ritual kills the child Daenerys was carrying and leaves Drogo in a catatonic state; technically alive but in a vegetative state.

Daenerys finds vengeance by tying Mirri to Drogo’s funeral pyre and sets it alight. She climbs on herself with her dragon eggs.

The following morning, Daenerys stepped off the pyre totally unburnt.

The fire had also allowed the dragon eggs to hatch and Daenerys stepped forward carrying three dragon hatchlings.

She named them Drogon (for her husband), Rhagal (for her older brother Rhaegar, who we now know to be Jon’s real father), and Viserion (for her second brother Viserys).

While in the television series the differences between the dragons haven’t been pronounced, they can be told apart. Drogon is the biggest and the one Daenerys rides most often.

Drogon is black and red. Rhaegal is green. Viserion is lighter than the other two. In the books he’s said to be cream with golden wings, but in the TV show he’s a much more muted colour.

Viserion’s biggest moments on Game Of Thrones

After his birth, we didn’t see a huge amount of Viserion. He eventually had a pretty big moment in season two after being kidnapped by the Qartheen warlock Pyat Pree.

Daenerys found Viserion and his brother chained within the House Of The Undying in Qarth, after they’d been stolen.

The kidnapping of the dragons led to one of the most memorable lines Daenerys has ever uttered on the show:

When Dany located her dragons, she had them burn Pyat Pree to death and torch down his house. A fair response, to be honest.

Viserion doesn’t really have any more big moments until season four.

How could we possibly forget the heartbreaking scene where Daenerys was forced to chain up poor Viserion and Rhaegal after their idiot brother Drogon killed a little girl!

It wasn’t even their fault, Dany!

Understandably, by the time we got to season five, Viserion and Rhaegal were pissed.

When Daenerys went to visit them, the dragons had grown much larger and they even tried to burn her. To be fair, she couldn’t say she didn’t have it coming!

Later on, Daenerys had gone some way to rebuilding bridges with Viserion and Rhaegal and they even roasted a Meereeneze nobleman in front of his pals at her behest. So that was nice of them.

After Daenerys was whisked away to the Dothraki Sea by Drogon at the climax of season five, Viserion and Rhaegal were beside themselves. Poor dears.

The two dragon brothers weren’t even eating. Thankfully, Tyrion decided to free them and headed down into the catacombs to do so.

The two were very sporting about the whole affair and allowed Tyrion to take off their chains. A pair of good eggs!

With this done Viserion and Rhaegal headed back into the cave for some reason, deciding not to take Tyrion up on his offer of freedom. To each their own, we suppose.

Thankfully, the plot called for the dragons to make a daring escape just in time for the season finale!

What are the chances, eh? As Daenerys returned to Meereen on Drogon’s back, Vis and Rhae smashed their way out of the cave and went to torch some ships for their mama. Like all good kids should!

In season seven, Viserion has been mostly out of the picture once again.

We’ve seen him and Rhaegal flying about Dragonstone a bit, but they’ve not had any massive scenes this penultimate episode. Probably budgetary reasons can be blamed for that: animating three massive dragons isn’t cheap, after all!

How did he die?

To be fair to him, Viserion went out like a champ.

In the fourth episode, The Spoils Of War, we saw that even the Lannister’s giant crossbow couldn’t bring down a dragon.

Turns out it was a sound idea in theory, just so happens that what was needed was a bit of wintry magic from the Night King.

It was all thanks to the inevitable idiocy of that buffoon, Jon Snow. Jon and his band of merry fools had travelled North of the Wall to bring back a dead man from the army of the dead.

As literally anyone might have guessed, the plan was doomed to fail. King Of The Numpties Jon and his team ended up getting surrounded by the White Walkers’ army. Thus, Daenerys and her dragons were forced to swoop in and save them.

After some iconic zombie-burning action. The king from the Land Of Always Winter (that’s what the far north is called) threw an ice spear that went straight through Viserion’s neck.

The poor dragon burst into flames and crashed into an icy lake.

Unfortunately, death isn’t the end for our dear departed friend Viserion. At the episode’s climax, the Night King pulled his body from the bottom of the lake and reawakened him as a zombie dragon.

Oh shit.

Safe to say he’s probably going to be a major player in the upcoming battles between our heroes and the White Walkers. Ironically, in death, Viserion may get more action than he ever saw in life.

Why does any of this matter?

Well, for a start this probably puts an end to those “Tyrion is a secret Targaryen” theories we’ve been hearing so much about.

The whole idea of that theory was founded on a quote from the books (we won’t get into how dumb it is to mix book canon and TV show canon now) in which Daenerys’ brother Rhaegar appeared in a vision to tell her:

There must be one more. The dragon has three heads.

This was taken to mean that Daenerys would have to find two other people to ride her other dragons while she rode Drogon.

Obviously Jon was going to be one of them but some thought Tyrion would be the third. The idea was that Daenerys’ mad father Aerys would have raped Tyrion’s mum, resulting in his birth.

This would explain why Tywin hated him so much.

Of course, now that there’s only two dragons to ride, it seems kind of unnecessary for this to come true.

And actually, maybe that’s for the best. After all, Tyrion’s relationship with his father is so much more interesting if Tywin does have to accept that the imp is his true born son.

It also means that the Night King is now an even more major threat than he was before.

But of course, maybe this was always coming. After all, the series is based around the prophecy of “the prince that was promised”. This prophecy refers to ice and fire.

Perhaps the Night King is the ice, Daenerys is the fire, and Jon is a combination of the two.

Unfortunately, we probably won’t get any updates on the status of Viserion until next season. It seems that the season finale is going to be a strictly King’s Landing based affair.

Until then, Viserion, goodnight sweet prince. You were always our secret favourite of the Game Of Thrones dragons.

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