Inside Game of Thrones' Big Jon Snow Moment (And Why He Can't Handle the Truth)

It was a moment years in the making

By Chris Harnick Apr 15, 2019 3:05 PMTags
Game of ThronesHBO

Jon Snow can't handle the truth.

In the Game of Thrones season eight premiere—SPOILER ALERT—Jon Snow (Kit Harington) learns the truth about his parents—and his relationship to Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke). Again, this is a spoiler warning.

Yep, Jon Snow's new lady is his aunt.

"The fact that Jon's real parents were who Jon's real parents were is not news to us at this point, but what we don't know is the way that Jon is going to take this," Game of Thrones co-creator D.B. Weiss said in the video below. "How's the explosion going to look?"

When Sam (John Bradley) told him the truth, Jon wasn't quite receptive.

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"He's being told something that he both knows is true and can't handle. So he tries to throw things in front of it to prevent him from having to deal with the truth he's being told. The thing he throws in front of it here is the fact that it means his father was lying to him his whole life," Weiss said.

Yep, the honorable Ned Stark (Sean Bean) kept one big secret, which Jon can't comprehend. But as Sam pointed out, Ned was being honorable by protecting his sister.

"The truth that Samwell tells Jon is probably the most incendiary fact in the entire world of the show," Weiss said.

Jon Snow, the heir to the Iron Throne…whether he wants to be or not.

"One of the things Jon always clung to is that at least his father is Ned Stark — this incredibly honorable beautiful man. Ned was his idol growing up. Now ‘my father is not my father, my father lied to me, and I'm actually the thing I want to be least in this world — an heir to the Iron Throne and a rival to the woman I love,'" writer Dave Hill told EW.

Earlier in the episode, Jon climbed atop a dragon and rode it around, a trait previously held by the Targaryens. Yet he ignored that. And now he can't really ignore the truth…or can he?

"If Jon could go back in time and say: ‘Whatever you're about to say, don't tell me,' he would," Harington told EW. "He'd happily be in ignorance."

The reveal is a one-two punch, that shakes him to his core in more ways than one.

"That's the thing I love about Jon, his purity," Harington said. "He doesn't f—king want it. He doesn't want that f—king information. He doesn't want to know. He has no ambition for the throne. He's never wanted that. The end of the world might be coming soon but at least he's in love with somebody and knows who he is, and then comes this sledgehammer."

So, he's in love with somebody (his aunt) and doesn't necessarily know who he is (a Targaryen). And the dead are coming. Jon Snow has his hands full.

Game of Thrones airs Sundays, 9 p.m. on HBO.

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