Game of Thrones has already had a lengthy run as a TV show. It still has another season to go, along with other spinoff shows that are currently in the early stages of development. These pale in comparison to the A Song of Ice and Fire book series that Game of Thrones is based on, which is currently longer than Lord of the Rings and the Bible combined.
With so many different stories existing in the two different versions of Westeros that we see in the books and the TV show, it is only natural that some would be cut or changed at the last minute. The entire story of Game of Thrones was once very different than what we see on screen today.
We are here today to look at the stories and scenes that were planned to happen in Game of Thrones and A Song of Ice and Fire.
From the lost years that would have followed the Red Wedding to the incestuous threeway that you never wanted to see, here are 15 Insane Game Of Thrones Storylines That Almost Happened.
15. The Timeskip
The 4th novel in the series is called A Feast for Crows. There was a five-year gap between the release of the third and fourth novel in the series. The planned fourth novel (originally called A Dance with Dragons) was split into two, as it had grown too large. These two novels ran concurrently, with one focusing on events within the Seven Kingdoms and the other focusing on Essos, the North, and the Wall.
One of the reasons that A Feast for Crows took so long to develop is because George R. R. Martin had to scrap the novel after a year of work. He had originally wanted the fourth book to skip ahead five years. This would allow him to age up the characters and skip over a lot of the training (like Sam at the Citadel and Arya with the Faceless Men).
George R. R. Martin was unable to make this work, since it didn’t make sense to skip such a huge period. Was Jon Snow able to command the Night’s Watch for five years without trouble? Martin decided to start the novel over from scratch and continued on directly from the ending of A Storm of Swords.
14. Myrcella’s Brains
Myrcella Baratheon was never destined to live a long life. Cersei received a prophecy when she was a child that stated she would have three children, who would each wear a golden crown and a golden shroud. This suggests that all of her children would be monarchs and die before their time.
This is true of Joffrey in both the books and the show. Tommen also suffers a similar fate in the show, though he is still alive in the books. Myrcella has died in the show, though she was never a ruler. The prophecy makes more sense in the books, as Arianne Martell tried to make Myrcella the Queen of the Seven Kingdoms.
The death of Myrcella in the show is quite tame compared to some of the others that have happened. She quickly passed away due to the effects of poison. Myrcella’s actress has revealed that the death sequence was originally going to be a lot bloodier.
She was given mashed up bananas and fake blood, which was going to represent her brains coming out of her body (presumably through her nose). It seems that the creators of the show decided to go for a more tasteful approach to Myrcella’s death.
13. Daenerys Was Going To Murder Khal Drogo
The first novel in the A Song of Ice and Fire series is called A Game of Thrones. This book was first released in 1996. George R. R. Martin had been working on the concept for several years, as an outline for the series dating back to 1993 was posted on the Twitter page of Waterstones (a British book retailer).
The outline for the series differs in many different ways to the published series, and we will be covering these changes in detail throughout this article. We will discuss the changes to Daenerys’s story first. It seems that she was originally going to be on a lot better terms with her brother, Viserys.
In the books and show, Viserys is portrayed as abusive and cruel to his sister. Things may have been different in the books. The outline for the series confirms that Khal Drogo murders Viserys, as he kept trying to convince him to invade the Seven Kingdoms.
12. Doran’s Larger Role
Many fans were wondering if the Dorne plot from the books would make its way into the show. This is because the Dorne plot added many new characters that weren’t connected to the current cast in a significant way. We also don’t know where the Dorne plot is leading to, as it is still ongoing in the books.
We did get a Dorne plot in the show, but it was pretty bad, to the point where it is considered the lowest point of the series by some. The Dorne plot is quickly concluded in season 6, when the Sand Snakes take over the country in a brief coup. This felt rushed to many fans, and some concluded that it was the creator’s response to the unpopular storyline.
It seems that more was planned for the Dorne plot at one point. Alexander Siddig has confirmed that he was contracted (and paid) for four episodes in season 6, yet they only used him for one brief scene.
11. Arya Would Never Have Met The Faceless Men
Arya managed to escape from the Red Keep when the Lannisters massacred the Stark men in the first season of Game of Thrones. This was a smart move, as it allowed her to escape from the clutches of Joffrey and from being sent to marry Ramsay Bolton (this happens in the books to a girl named Jeyne Poole, whom the Lannisters pretend is Arya).
After seeing the ravages of war in the Riverlands, Arya travels to Braavos to seek the tutelage of the Faceless Men. The Faceless Men did not exist in the original outline of the series. Instead, Ned Stark would have successfully helped Arya and Catelyn escape from King’s Landing so that they could return to the North.
10. Robb Stark Would Have Battled Joffrey
Robb Stark and Joffrey Baratheon were enemies in a great war, yet they never came close to meeting each other on the battlefield. Joffrey spent most of the series inside King’s Landing, while Robb only got as far as the Riverlands and the Westerlands. The two of them shared the same grim fate, as they were both murdered at weddings.
The original draft of the series did not include either the Red Wedding nor the Purple Wedding. Instead, Joffrey would be more proactive on the battlefield. He would actually do battle with Robb Stark, though he was at a severe disadvantage. Joffrey escaped with his life, though he was maimed by Robb.
Robb Stark’s fate was also different. He would have been killed on the battlefield. Robb and his army were going to lose to a force led by Tyrion and Jamie Lannister. This was because the Lannisters had gathered enough allies to overwhelm the Northern forces.
9. Tyrion Would Have Sacked Winterfell
Tyrion and Jamie don’t stop with the destruction of Robb Stark’s army. They continue on into the North and sack Winterfell. There is no mention of Theon Greyjoy or the Ironborn in the original outline of the story, which means that the destruction of Winterfell was always destined to happen.
The few remaining Starks are able to flee to the Wall in order to seek Jon Snow’s protection before the Lannisters capture them.
There is actually still a reference to this plot in the first A Song of Ice and Fire novel. When Tyrion goes to Winterfell to give the Starks the design for the saddle that Bran could use to ride a horse, he is attacked by Robb’s direwolf.
8. Catelyn, Bran, And Arya Would Have Teamed Up With Mance Rayder
Jon Snow’s role in the story was relatively unchanged in the original outline for the series. He was still Ned Stark’s bastard son, and would have left Winterfell to join the Night’s Watch. The main difference is that he would have served as a ranger before becoming the Lord Commander.
Catelyn, Arya, and Bran (but not Rickon, who isn’t mentioned in the outline) would have escaped from Winterfell before it was taken by the Lannisters. The three of them would have fled to the Wall, in order to seek the protection of Jon Snow and Benjen Stark (who never went missing in the original outline).
It seems that Jon and Benjen were once going to be a lot more strict about their vows, as they refused to give sanctuary to the three surviving Starks.
7. Catelyn Would Have Been Killed By The White Walkers
The first time the White Walkers would have appeared in the original outline was during an attack on Mance Rayder’s camp. They are referred to as the Others, which is also the name they are given in the books.
The Others attack Mance and the Wildlings, which would have forced the Starks to try and break free. Arya and Bran managed to escape with the aid of Needle, Bran’s supernatural abilities, and the direwolves.
Catelyn Stark was not so lucky. She would have been killed by the Others during the attack. It is possible that she may have been animated as an undead monster, which happens in the books.
In A Storm of Swords, Catelyn Stark is resurrected after the Red Wedding by Beric Dondarrion, who uses the last of his fire to bring her back to life. She comes back as Lady Stoneheart: a woman who returned from the dead to seek revenge.
Lady Stoneheart takes over the leadership of the Brotherhood Without Banners and leads a campaign of vengeance against the Freys and the Lannisters. It seems that a similar fate may have awaited her originally.
6. Sansa Would Have Given Birth To Joffrey’s Child
In A Song of Ice and Fire, Sansa falls in love with Joffrey. This leads her to betray her father’s escape plan to the Lannisters, which tipped them off that Ned Stark was planning a coup. Sansa is not so deceitful in the show, though she still loves Joffrey and wants to marry him.
The original outline for the story states that Sansa would have actually married Joffrey and given birth to his son. She would betray her family to the Lannisters, though she would later regret this choice. It is not revealed exactly how she would do this. We know it must have been a different way than in the original story, as Arya and Catelyn were able to escape from King’s Landing.
Sansa is barely mentioned outside of this plot point, and there is no mention of Littlefinger, the Vale or the Tyrells. We do know that Olenna Tyrell wouldn’t have shown up, as Joffrey would have died in a different way.
5. Jamie Would Have Become The King Of Westeros
It seems that Jamie Lannister was once going to be a lot more ambitious, as he was originally destined to become the King of Westeros.
The original outline states that Tyrion was responsible for getting rid of Joffrey, though it isn’t explained how he does this. Jamie then kills every heir to the throne, which presumably means that he murders Joffrey and Sansa’s son, and takes the iron throne for himself.
There are hints that this plotline was still going to happen in A Game of Thrones. This is due to a plot point that eventually made no sense, due to new details about the Kingsguard.
Originally, Jamie was named the Warden of the East, which is a title normally reserved for the Lord Paramount of the Vale. The reason Jamie was given this title was that the current Lord Paramount of the Vale was Robert Arryn, who was a young boy at the time. This plotline made no sense in later books, as it was established that members of the Kingsguard cannot hold titles.
4. The Essos Plot Would Never Have Existed
One of the least popular plotlines in A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones involves the city of Mereen. Daenerys finally has a powerful army of her own, which she uses to burn down Yunkai and take the city of Mereen.
Most fans expected her to gather some ships and sail for Westeros. Instead, she decides to remain in Essos and become the Queen of Mereen. This story isn’t popular because we know for a fact that it won’t stick. Daenerys is destined to return to Westeros, so why is she messing around in cities that she cannot hope to rule without the threat of force?
The original outline of the series was going to skip all of this entirely. Daenerys was going to stumble across dragon eggs in the countryside outside of Vaes Dothrak. She would then hatch the dragons and use them to take control of the Dothraki army.
3. Bran Was Going To Be A Wizard
Bran Stark’s supernatural abilities seem to be telepathic in nature. He can possess the minds of others and has visions of far away places and events that have already happened.
When we last see him in A Dance with Dragons, he is about to start his training with the Three-Eyed Crow. We still don’t know exactly what Bran will learn from this or what his overall purpose to the story will be.
In the original outline of the series, it seems that Bran’s journey was going to follow a more traditional fantasy story. Bran was originally going to become a student of magic, as he was searching for a way to heal his broken legs.
He would not be able to restore his ability to walk, so he would continue to study magic for its own sake. Bran would later gain some combat magic abilities. We know this because it says that he uses his magic to fight off the Others so that he and Arya can escape from the Wildling camp when it is under attack.
2. Hodor’s Death Was Going To Be More Horrific
Hodor sacrificing his life in order to allow Bran and Meera to escape from the White Walkers was one of the saddest moments in the entire series. Fans across the world were rooting for Hodor to survive the war and be allowed to live a happy life away from physical labor. This was not meant to be, as we learn that his fate was sealed at a young age, due to Bran’s time travel shenanigans.
The director of “The Door” revealed that he originally had a much more gruesome death planned for Hodor. We were going to see him ripped apart by the Wights. They would rip off his clothes with their claws, which would be followed by tearing the flesh from his body. Hodor would have still held on, despite the agony that he would endure.
This was one instance when the creators of the show felt that a horrific death would have taken away from the emotional impact of the moment, so they vetoed the scene and replaced it with something vaguer.
1. The Arya/Jon/Tyrion Love Triangle
The most striking part of the original outline for the series involves a love triangle between three of the five main characters. George R. R. Martin had originally planned for Jon Snow and Arya Stark to fall in love with each other, as Tyrion Lannister also finds himself falling for her.
Game of Thrones is no stranger to incest storylines. Indeed, this storyline was likely given to Cersei and Jamie instead. If anything, the show is actually more disturbing with its incest, as Cersei and Jamie are twins, while Jon and Arya at least believe they are half-siblings (when they are actually cousins).
Martin suggests that their relationship would be allowed to continue when the truth of Jon’s parentage is revealed in the final books, which suggests that the Rhaeger/Lyanna plot was already thought of ahead of time.
Tyrion would fall in love with Arya (a little girl half his age), even though he was responsible for exiling her family and burning down her home. It seems that elements of Tyrion’s storyline may have been passed on to Littlefinger at some point.
These ideas would have made for an interesting story, though the outline clearly still needs a lot of work. We are lucky that George R. R. Martin continued to work on the book, which led to the series that we love today.
What do you think about these possible storylines? Are there any you wish had been kept? Let us know in the comments!
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