Okay, so we have quite a few months to kill before
returns to the airwaves. How will we fill that time? With speculation, discussion, and no small amount of wishful thinking. Such is the way of the off-season.
Case in point: recently, there’s been a lot of buzz around the idea that Season 6 will finally feature a flashback (of sorts) to a pivotal scene at the Tower of Joy, a Dornish edifice where Ned Stark, his friend Howland Reed, and a bunch of his other companions faced down and killed three knights of the Kingsguard. This was toward the end of Robert’s Rebellion, the conflict that put Robert Baratheon on the throne years before the series began. This is also where Lyanna Stark, Ned Stark’s sister, died, but not before making Ned agree to some kind of nebulousl promise. If conspiracy theorists can be believed (and when can’t they?), she died in childbirth, and the promise Ned made was to keep her baby, the love-child of herself and Rheagar Targaryen, safe.
Who was that love-child? None other than this guy.
Allegedly, anyway. Fans have been circulating this story since reading the first book in the series, in which Ned frequently reminisced about what went down at the Tower of Joy. (Incidentally, he tore it down after Lyanna died, so if we do see it, it’ll have to be in a flashback.) We bring it up now because there’s an article by
Robin Edds currently making the rounds that lays out what some consider to be convincing evidence that the Tower will make an appearance in the upcoming season. Let’s look at it.
This is the Castillo de Zafra, a 13th century fortress located in Guadalajara province, Spain, not far from Madrid. It’s one of the new locations the
production team will be shooting Season 6. Here’s another angle on it.
Viewed this way, and you can see why some people are thinking this could very well stand in for the Tower of Joy, a single tower located in the Red Mountains of Dorne. Sure, it’s described as a round tower in the books (that’s illustrator Uros Obradovic’s depiction of it in the header image), but when you find a location this close to perfect, you work with what you’ve got.
By itself, this location probably wouldn’t convince anyone of anything. After all, people have guessed we would be getting a Tower of Joy scene after looking at shots of new locations before, and they’ve turned out to be wrong. There’s something else adding to the speculation, and it has to do with a description of a new role HBO needs to cast.
Legendary Fighter: A man in his thirties or forties who is a great swordsman and a paragon of knighthood. He carries a hugely famous sword on his back. The show is seeking a very impressive swordsman for the role- the best in Europe, for a week of filming fight scenes for a season 6 role. His ethnicity/race isn’t specified, unlike many other roles.
Speculation has it that the “legendary fighter” is Ser Arthur Dayne, one of the Kingsguard knights Ned Stark and company fought at the Tower of Joy. The description does seem to line up. Ned once described Dayne as “the finest knight I ever saw,” which is another way of saying that he was “a paragon of knighthood.” Catelyn Stark remembered that Dayne was thought to be “the deadliest of the seven knights of Aerys’s Kingsguard,” and Jaime Lannister recalled that he “could have slain all five of you with his left hand while he was taking a piss with the right.” In other words, he was a good fighter, which explains why HBO is looking for the best swordsman in Europe. Finally, Dayne carried a sword named Dawn, which was “forged from the heart of a fallen star.” Sounds “hugely famous” enough to me.
Okay, so this all seems to line up, but what about the producers’ well-known reticence to indulge in flashbacks? Well, to start, they already broke that rule in Season 5 when they flashed back to a young Cersei’s encounter with a woods witch, so who’s to say they can’t do it again? Also, one of the reasons the production gave for not having flashbacks—budgetary constraints—isn’t really a problem anymore, not after the success the show has had. Finally, considering what happens in
, the show may not need to use a flashback to show this particular scene, thanks to this fellow.
After sitting Season 5 out, Isaac Hempstead Wright recently confirmed that he would be returning to the role of Bran Stark for Season 6. Last we left Bran, he had found the three-eyed raven (or the three-eyed crow, if you’re talking about the books), and discovered that the mysterious figure who had guided him since his journey began was a guy with tree roots growing out of him. How fun. The show didn’t give viewers a lot of information about him, but book-readers know that he is a greenseer, a mystic who can view the past, present, and future of Westeros by looking through the eyes of the ubiquitous weirwood trees that dot the landscape.
, the three-eyed crow begins to teach Bran these skills, and the young Stark even has some success hopping into the weirwood tree at Winterfell and watching what transpired there in years past. If there happened to be a weirwood tree near the Tower of Joy, it stands to reason that Bran could see what happened there through its eyes. Frankly, that seems unlikely, as many of the weirwoods in the southern parts of Westeros were cut down long ago. (Also, what are the odds a weirwood could grow in the rocky soil around the Tower of Joy?) Still, it’s possible, and it would allow the producers to get around their “no flashbacks” policy.
Even if all this sounds reasonable, there’s still one more question that needs to be answered: what purpose would a flashback to the events at the Tower of Joy serve? If the fan theories are right, it could provide a way to reveal that Jon Snow is actually Jon Targaryen, not a bastard of Winterfell but the secret crown prince of the realm. Season 5 did seem to bring that idea back into play when Littlefinger and Sansa discussed the relationship between Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen in the crypts beneath Winterfell. But even if it’s true and Jon is a secret Targaryen, what would it matter now that he’s, y’know, dead, murdered by his own lieutenants in the Season 5 finale?
Well, one option is that he’s coming back. The theories on how this might happen are legion, although we can’t be sure of anything yet. Another is that something else happened at the Tower of Joy that it’s worth flashing back for. Maybe the promise Ned made to Lyanna has nothing to do with the child she may or may not have had, but will still have an impact on the story going forward. It would be just like
to tell us it’s leading us to water only to push us over a cliff.
Or maybe none of this will happen. Perhaps the Castillo de Zafra will stand in for a nameless ruin and the “legendary fighter” will be Gerold “Darkstar” Dayne. That’s the fun of the off-season. Any and all of this could be true, or none of it could be. Until Season 6 finally rolls around, it’s all true and all false all at once.
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Some of you only know him as that guy who played the guy who chopped off Ned Stark’s head...
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Darkstar –legendary fighter….. Well even that could become shown in the show’s current state
I heard he’s of the night. Did anyone else know he was of the night?
Well, since Myrcella already is dead, what role would Darkstar fill then? Even thought the Dornish plot probably returns next year I dont see how he could appear in the show, as long as he doesnt play a significant role in twow.
It cant be Gerold Dayne because he’s nothing like the character they are looking for actors to play.
Just because BuzzFeed talked about it doesn’t mean the arguments aren’t sound. Learn to love and accept all of God’s creatures and websites.
I love how WiC continues to produce material for us GoT obsessed fanboys and fangirls u.u While other websites (ahem ahem) post the bare minimum.
I have a feeling season six will open with a flashback from Bran seeing the Tower of Joy, the fight scene, Ned meeting his sister and she tells him the boys name is Jon. We then immediately switch to Castle black and see what is happening straight after the stabbing (I suspect chaos and Mel running to Jon).
I’ve seen other posts where some fans are saying the same or similar as you’re suggesting. And of course your speculation is as good as mine. But for some reason I just don’t think it will happen that way. Such a scene (especially an opening scene to Season 6) too easily confirms that Jon Snow will continue to play an important role going forward.
I wish they would start season 6 with an entire flashback epsisode. Start with the birth of Rhaegar and the tragedy of Summerhall, through the tourney at Harrenhal in the year of the false spring, then end with Rhaegar falling at the trident and the battle at the Tower of Joy.
I know such a thing would never actually happen, but a man can dream. It’s also interesting to wonder about how they reveal Jon’s true heritage. Will they show the audience but leave Jon in the dark? And if Jon is truly a legimate Targaryen, how does the rest of Westeros come to accept the truth of that? (Or do they simply see him on dragon-back and do the math for themselves?)
I can see a movie about Rhaegar and Lyanna story …
I have dreamed of a “Robert’s Rebillion” Movie since first reading AGOT. It would be amazing
It would make for an interesting prequel to GOT as well… HBO could get several seasons out of it, at least.
Should Tower of Joy be in Season 1? What is the point place it in the season 6 other than another of those “Shock moment” of D&D?
I think D&D have been trying to avoid revealing it before the books since the mystery of Jon’s parentage is one of the central mysteries of the books. Other than the Prince that was Promised and/or Azor Ahai, nothing else comes close in my mind- that’s not the sort of thing you give away in season 1.
You do have to reveal “mystery of Jon’s parentage”, just show the fight and then the scene of “Ned, promise me…” but now showing directly handing over the baby, the main character of the Tower of Joy was Ned, now Ned has been dead 4 seasons ago.
Luckily we now have 50 weeks worth of past thrones episodes to re-watch (if you watch 1 episode each Sunday). That should keep your throne on until the next season!
Violentos, it’s always hard for me to watch just one episode. I just seen on Amazon GOT S5 Blu-ray pre order is $72 bucks! Lot more than I remember I paid for S4
What about the tragedy at Summerhall? Does anyone else think we might be seeing that next season?
I doubt it. The connection to “Egg” was Maester Aemon, and now Maester Aemon is dead, so I doubt the TV show would see a need to bring up a previously unmentioned tragedy from long, long ago at this point.
First time here, I love the website. Is there any connection to Targaryen babies killing their mothers through childbirth in the books? Did Daenerys kill her mother upon birth?
She did.It was nothing unusual during these days.
I don’t want to watch the Tower of Joy flashback at the beginning of next season. I want Jon to be resurrected as Jon Stark, recover Winterfel and the Riverlands … afterwards, when Danny arrives to Westeros with the dragons, Howland Reed should appear to tell the truth to both Danny and Jon.
You need more proof than word from Howland Reed.People in Westeros and particuraly Dany will need more than that,unless we are gonna have new actor with Targaryen features.That would be very convincing.
Check out the flashback as it appears on the first book –
The second angle of the tower is AWESOME. What a beautiful place.
The Mesa Roldan is another shooting locaton that would definitely be a fit for the Tower of Joy.
I think the one shown here might be better as Casterly Rock or Starfall.
Has anyone explored the likelihood that Robert Baratheon is Jon Snow’s Father? Think about it, Robert knows that in order to defeat the Targaryan’s in battle he’ll need the Lannister’s wealth to do it. Tywin will obviously want a deal that his daughter becomes queen if they are victorious, but any child born before then would both soil the deal and make Jon Snow the rightful heir. The child is kept secret only because he would be in danger if his lineage was revealed. Ned protects his Sister’s child not only because of his promise to his sister, but because Robert is his best friend. Think about it, Snow looks nothing like other Targaryans, he looks like all the other bastard Baratheon children that Ned found out about in Season one….and that cost Ned his life because he was snooping.
No chance, literally. Jon is repeatedly said to favor his father, which means he looks like a Stark, Robert’s bastards ALL had the same coal black hair, and while Jon may have dark hair, it’s never described in a fashion that would make viable a connection to Robert Baratheon.
Also, if what you’re suggesting were actually true, that would put Dany and Jon at odds, which seems counterproductive at this point in the story. Robert Baratheon is long dead now by this time, so again, what purpose does it serve?
Sorry, just doesn’t work. Brings to mind something that occured to me in the course of my first read-thru of the books, and that was wondering what if Jon wasn’t the son of
and Lyanna. A disturbing notion, that, but not without precedent.
Think we’re in for an extended Arthur Dayne flashback. There has been a casting call for ‘Bandits’ to appear in a few episodes for season 6. Everyone is guessing that they represent some corrupted version of the Brotherhood without Banners but I think they are for members of the Kingswood brotherhood. That makes sense from a few perspectives.
1. It allows the story tellers to set up Arthur Dayne as the supreme badass/paragon of knighthood that he is by showing him beating down the kingswood brotherhood. This serves to strengthen the ToJ scene as it gives more colour to the Arthur Dayne character, it wratchets up the dramatic tension as well as viewers (and book readers!) will want to know how Ned and Howland survived an encounter with such a fighter.
2. It may give an opportunity for Jaimie to be shown in his younger years as the conflict with the Kingswood Brotherhood resulted in his knighting. Jaimie is a popular TV character so this should appeal to the fans of the show.
I think the inclusion of those Bandits is just more evidence to suggest ToJ is happening in Season 6.
Now the real question will be, will D&D present the scenes as a straightup flashback? Or will that be a twist at the end when we realize they’re just scenes that Bran is conjuring up from the north.
It would be way too late to tell Arthur Dayne’s story other than tower of Joy, and even that story would be very awkward, Arthur Dayne was almost never mentioned in the TV show, non-book reader would have no clue who he was, and since Ned was long dead, and Howland Reed was a no show so far (at least I can not remember he even be mentioned) in the show, so even telling tower of Joy in flashback (Who’s flashback?) would be rather awkward
Kingswood brotherhood did not use religion to justify themselves, it was obviously another marvelous way to screw up Brother without banner in the courtesy your truly D&D
“I salute you Michael, excellent comment”! I can hardly contain my excitement! I am of the fan theory House of Dayne, Ashara+ Ned connection that will have a big impact on the storyline about Jon. More on that later. I have to assume, casting calls, and possible locations for filming will bring lots of fan’s speculations and theories. Some have to be true! Even though they are writing new material, D&D will still borrow from the books. I don’t think it would be difficult for fans to understand flashbacks, of Tower of Joy. I really think S6 first or second episode, will satisfy all fandom with the Lord of Light bringing Jon back, and revealing his true idenity. Imo, I think the showrunners want to draw us back in quickly, like when Joffrey was killed S4 episode 2 .
While it’s fun to speculate, I think some fans are taking it way too far and are going to be extremely disappointed when they find out in Season 6 that some of interpretation of casting calls and intense/detailed speculation of potential storylines have nothing whatsoever to do with what actually happens next season.
Exactly! I can see it already….”D&D SUCKS! They didn’t do the Tower of Joy flashback…”
When I read the books way back when, I was under the impression Greenseers could see through the ‘eyes’ of all trees, not just Weirwoods, but that for Bran, as a beginner, it’s just easier to start with Weirwoods as they already have eyes carved into them. So a Weirwood wouldn’t need to be at the Tower Of Joy, just any type of tree once Bran has honed his skills. Am I misremembering or just straight up wrong?
Both. He sees only what the weirwoods have seen. Thus Gilly’s rationalization of the intimacy with Sam: “There are no trees here, Sam. Only water”. A la ‘the gods can’t see us’.
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