George R.R. Martin told Game of Thrones creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss that Bran (Isaac Hempstead Wright) would be the king of Westeros. It's been more than a week since the HBO juggernaut series based on A Song of Ice and Fire wrapped up its eight-year run. Its final 80-minute outing was full of surprises - the first half of which was spent tackling the aftermath of Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) going on full Mad Queen and burning the King's Landing to the ground. And before she could even sit on the Iron Throne, she was killed by a hearbroken Jon Snow (Kit Harington) who knew that she isn't the kind of ruler the country needs. With that all resolved, the remainder of the show devoted its time to rebuilding, which included choosing a new ruler.
As the powers of Westeros convene to discuss what lies ahead for the country following two bloody wars, their first order of business is decide on their leader. Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) made a good case on why Bran is the best choice for the job being the Three-Eyed Raven, and surprisingly, he didn't get much push back from others, except for Sansa (Sophie Turner), who maintained that the North should be independent - something that was easily granted to her. Different from Westeros, however, the choice of Bran on the Iron Throne was met with varying reactions from the Game of Thrones fandom, most of them putting the blame on Benioff and Weiss. But apparently, this narrative turn came from Martin himself.
Sitting down with HBO's Making Game of Thrones, Hempstead Wright recalls how he found out that his character will become the king of Westeros as the show ends. He's understandably excited but at the same time skeptical about it. And it didn't sink in until Benioff and Weiss revealed to him that Martin has long planned this for Bran.
I had to physically get up and walk around my flat. I said, “What?! You’re joking.” It was the very last thing I expected to happen. I was convinced they had sent a script to everyone in which they become king or queen, so I still didn’t believe it until the read-through.
But I think he is a great character to take on that role. You never thought of him in that way, but what more could you ask for in a king than to have no personal attachments, no agenda, but have a calm understanding of the entire universe? He’s the ideal person to be in charge.
[Creators] David [Benioff] and Dan [Weiss] told me there were two things [author] George R.R. Martin had planned for Bran, and that was the Hodor revelation, and that he would be king. So that’s pretty special to be directly involved in something that is part of George’s vision. It was a really nice way to wrap it up.
A sizeable chunk of the avid viewers of Game of Thrones were floored when Tryion made the claim that not only does Bran has the best narrative, and that he's also deserving to be king because of his life experiences. And since the finale, fans have been looking forward more to the release of the remaining two novels in the series to see if his ending variation is more acceptable for them. Martin teased that he'll be able to finish The Winds of Winter before summer of next year, further fueling clamor for it. Martin did say that his books will end somewhat similar, but still different to how HBO did it on the small screen.
This isn't promising for those who might be turning their attention to the books to get a satisfying send-off for their personal preference. If Bran being on the Iron Throne came from the author himself, it's safe to assume that his novels won't veer too far away from what the show did, at least in terms of this particular plot point. This doesn't mean that the books won't be able to provide them then type of storytelling that they wanted from Game of Thrones. With no time and page limit, Martin can better flesh out the characters' journeys to make sure that their respective narrative endgames feel earned.