And now his watch has ended.
In a particularly gory (Arya’s eye-stabbing, anyone?) season five finale, Jon Snow was stabbed in the back by Olly and other members of the Night’s Watch. As he lay dying, his blood turned the snow red and his eyes glazed over. It was goodbye to the bastard hero.
Or was it? While showrunner D.B Weiss told Entertainment Weekly that “dead is dead,” and Kit Harington told Vulture, “Jon dies. It’s final. He’s dead,” George R.R. Martin suggested it may not be as simple as it seems: “If there’s one thing we know in A Song of Ice and Fire, it’s that death is not necessarily permanent.”
It’s all very mysterious and now we feel like we know nothing…
So while Snow may well be a goner, here are the theories suggesting he’s not…
We haven’t seen Jon warg on the show, but book fans reckon that the leader of the Night’s Watch could have transferred his soul into the body of Ghost. As Jon dies in the books, the last word he says is “Ghost” (although this didn’t happen on the show). After all, the dire wolf is called Ghost, so it would make sense for him to take on the soul of his master. Melisandre also utters a prophecy in the books that could apply here: “Now he was a man, now a wolf, now a man again.” It’s unknown who this vision is about, but many think it relates to Jon. If this theory is true, we may not see Harington next season, but perhaps only see Jon via Ghost the direwolf.
If Jon does have Targaryen blood, he could be reborn
Will The Night’s Watch definitely burn Jon’s body to stop him becoming a Wight? They’ve been careful to do that with the other dead bodies. If you subscribe to the R + L = J theory about Jon’s mother, this could have some interesting implications. If Jon does have Targaryen blood, he might be able to survive or even be resurrected by fire, much like Daenerys was unharmed by fire during the birth of her dragons in season one.
Melisandre finally does something sensible and brings Jon back from the dead
Remember when Melisandre tried it on with Jon? She clearly sees something intriguing in him (beyond his tousled locks, that is). Now that Stannis is presumably dead, Melisandre needs a new messiah. The thing is, we haven’t actually seen her bring anyone back from the dead, but back in season three, the Red Woman did meet Thoros of Myr, a priest who resurrected a man six times using the power of the Lord of Light. There are other theories that Jon could in fact become resurrected by either Bran and the Bloodraven, or Lady Stoneheart (if the show ever introduces her, which looks unlikely).
Jon becomes a White Walker
This would be very dark and depressing, but then Game of Thrones doesn’t have much mercy on its characters. Or its viewers. Everytime we think the show won’t cross a line (Shireen’s burning, for example) it goes and does it. So If Melisandre can’t bring Jon back, maybe the Night’s King could bring him back to ‘life’ as a terrifying killer zombie.
Or Jon Snow may actually be dead
He was actually stabbed, the blood was real and nobody’s going to bring him back. It’s goodbye Jon Snow. Forever. Maybe all these theories are just borne of a deep denial. Is it time to let go of our hope?