- Warning: Spoilers for HBO’s “Game of Thrones” season eight, episode one.
- In the final moments of the season 8 “Game of Thrones” premiere, Jaime Lannister and Bran Stark came face-to-face in the Winterfell courtyard.
- It was a stunning reunion that has been building since Jaime pushed Bran out of a tower window on the very first episode of the show.
- Both characters have changed massively since they last interacted.
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In 2011, the first episode of HBO’s “Game of Thrones” included the shocking penultimate scene of Jaime Lannister pushing a child, Bran Stark, out of a tower window.
In 2019’s first episode of the final season, Jaime and Bran saw each other again across the Winterfell courtyard.
Fans couldn’t contain their excitement.
Jaime Lannister: ????
Bran Stark: ???? pic.twitter.com/vP2dah3AFa
— Lizzy (@lizshnooks) April 15, 2019
That Bran-Jaime standoff… ????????????
— Caleb Turner (@calebturner23) April 15, 2019
Jon reunited w/ Bran
Jon reunited w/ Arya
Arya reunited w/ the Hound
Arya reunited w/ Gendry
Tyrion reunited w/ Sana’a
Jaime… Jaime reunited w/ his past self, the self that would kill and do ANYTHING for Cersei, never turn against her, in seeing Bran.
— Naybahood Nip ???? (@YVEvil_Genius1) April 15, 2019
— King George (@jmcb84) April 15, 2019
While the moment was just one of many reunions on season eight’s first episode, this one was particularly jarring because of how much Jaime and Bran have both changed throughout the series.
On season one, Jaime Lannister was dashing and detestable. Known as the Kingslayer, Jaime was in love with his twin sister Cersei Lannister and the two were engaging in an incestuous relationship that they had maintained since they were teens, despite her marriage to King Robert Baratheon.
When Bran Stark, one of the youngest sons of Ned and Caitlyn Stark who loved to climb the Winterfell buildings, witnessed the Lannister twins having sex in an abandoned tower, Jaime pushed him out the window with the iconic line, “The things I do for love.”
While the fall doesn’t kill Bran, it does leave him in a coma and later, unable to use his legs.
- Macall B. Polay/HBO
But Jaime has transformed into a much more honorable figure. Throughout the seasons and thanks to his relationships with upright characters like Brienne of Tarth, Jaime has remembered what it is to be a knight.
Despite his love for his sister Cersei, he realized on the finale of season seven that he could no longer stand at her side. We know now his journey takes him to Winterfell, where the first person he sees is Bran Stark, the boy he pushed out of a tower window many years ago.
Bran has “greensight,” which actor Isaac Hampstead-Wright (who plays Bran) told INSIDER’s “Game of Thrones” correspondent Kim Renfro is the ability to see the whole history of the “Game of Thrones” universe.
Essentially, this power helps him learn that Jon Snow is the trueborn son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark as well as the Night King’s origin story. Bran’s greensight may also let him see the future or at least have a general idea of destiny and what needs to be done in the war against the White Walkers.
But with these powers comes an entirely new personality. During season seven when Bran reunites with his sister Sansa Stark, he’s quiet and reserved. A similar moment happens when Jon Snow and Bran reunite during season eight, episode one. “You’re a man now,” Jon says affectionately. “Almost,” Bran replies coldly.
He could mean that he’s nearly a man, or that he’s not really a man at all – he’s now fully transformed into the Three-Eyed Raven.
In this same vein, there’s a good chance that Bran will not react to Jaime the way Jaime expects him to.
Earlier on the episode, when Samwell Tarly asks Bran what he’s doing sitting alone in the Winterfell courtyard, Bran replies that he’s “waiting for an old friend.” He’s calm, distant, and cold – the same way he was with Sansa and Jon, and how viewers have come to expect from the Three-Eyed Raven.
There’s no doubt that he was waiting for Jaime’s return to Winterfell, and there’s a good chance that he has seen or knows something that makes it necessary for him to have an audience with the Kingslayer.
But just how that conversation will go is still a mystery that will only be answered on the second episode of “Game of Thrones” season 8.