The Case For Jon Snow

(Welcome to Debate of Thrones, where a panel of Citadel-trained experts explain why someone deserves, or doesn’t deserve, to sit on the Iron Throne. In this edition: if we must have a king, at least Jon Snow won’t kill us all.)

People of Westeros – of which I am totally one and not at all a ghost of non-fiction future – who, may I ask, would you have rule the seven kingdoms? A privileged sociopathic white lady with a drinking problem who does incest with her hot brother? Nay. A formerly privileged white lady (let’s be honest, she’s still pretty privileged) who’s let two-thirds of her entire battle tactic die and who also does incest with her hot nephew? Nay. Perhaps a 14-year-old (excuse me, allegedly 18-year-old) sociopath who does murders for fun? Nay. Mayhaps that scheming, untrustworthy, bald-pated eunuch? Actually, maybe – as dearly departed Theon Greyjoy hath proven, men are vastly improved when separated from their man-bits. What about yonder ocean-born man-whore, who most certainly smells of testicles soaked in trash-water? Hell nay.

Dear Westerosians, the choice is clear. There is only one person-folk fit to rule the seven kingdoms, and he’s barely fit to rule them at all. In fact, he doesn’t even want the job, but if we are determined to continue this monarchy instead of establishing a reasonable democracy for each of the seven kingdoms, then Jon Snow – aka Aegon Targaryen, the 800th of his name, keeper of the man-bun and friend of the free folk – is literally the least offensive person you can choose. Jon Snow: If you must have someone sit on that uncomfortable iron throne, then sure, why not this guy. Hear me out.

He Has Much Wiser People Around Him

I have two words for you: Samwell Tarly. We all know Samwell is the true hero; the man behind the man, if you will. It was Samwell who discovered that dragonglass can kill whitewalkers. It was Samwell who first killed one himself. Samwell is more than well-acquainted with the history of Westeros, the ways of healing the injured and plague-ridden (like Ser Jorah), and is willing to take risks where other men would not dare (see also: Ser Jorah, again). Samwell has studied under the wisest maesters, and even proven them to be cowardly and short-sighted. Guess what, my Westerosi peers? Samwell is Jon’s best friend. He’s the strongest, smartest, bravest (and most adorable) person in Jon’s corner. So a vote for Jon is a vote for Sam, and vice versa.

Equally as crucial as Samwell Tarly is Sansa Stark – Jon’s adopted sister and the most no-nonsense woman this side of Brienne of Tarth. Sansa has been proven right time and again, and though it may have seemed wholly shady for her to tell Tyrion about Jon’s true heritage, it was actually the right call. Daenerys, as Sansa will be the quickest to tell you, is not fit to rule all of Westeros. As an avowed Westerosi feminist, this breaks my heart as much as yours – this idea that Dany might be too much like her father, thus making the imminent shit-show of a battle between Cersei and Dany more of a cat-fight between two crazy women, which is reductive as the seven hells. ANYHOW. Sansa is right about Daenerys – and so is Varys, and you can scratch your head about his seemingly instantaneous turn-coat whispering all you want, but who says someone can’t change their mind when faced with the facts and presented with all of the evidence? Even Varys thinks Jon is a better ruler at this point, and it’s Jon Snow we’re talking about. He’s kind of a dum-dum. A hot dum-dum, but we’ll get to that.

RIGHT. So Sansa was right about Daenerys – though she may have been stripped of her tangible privilege when her crazy-ass dad was rightfully murdered, she’s still a privileged white lady who let her only black friend (and thus her only incredibly weak excuse for not being racist) get kidnapped and murdered by that other crazy white lady. She’s the “breaker of chains,” but she basically just promoted slaves to a lesser form of slavery. Can she even name any of the thousands of people of color she let die in the battle against the Night King?! Probably not. Her prime motivation heading into this mega cat-fight with Cersei is that her one black friend died – a death that occurred only to motivate her rage and show the rest of the kingdoms how batshit bananas she is, just like her dad. (Because also, what’s a woman without daddy issues? Are there any of those in Westeros? Only Brienne, and she’s too damn good to rule. Please let her retire to an island full of peaceful, subservient men who are always quiet and live only for her approval.)

But this is about Jon Snow, so let’s get back to it: He also has the free folk, who are inherently more wise because they spent most of their lives away from the rest of Westeros and all this drama. Then there’s Varys, who knows everything there is to know about everyone, and while he might be a shady little queen who loves to collect tea, his intentions are ultimately good: He cares about all the regular Joes of Westeros – the nameless, faceless people who die all the time in the name of this never-ending parade of “Who’s got the biggest dick in the seven kingdoms?”

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He’s Handsome, and Let’s Be Real, You’d Follow That Shit Anywhere

I’m going to level with you here for a minute, people-folk of Westeros: Jon Snow is a babe. If he were a president, he’d be Babe-raham Lincoln – sorry, you have no idea who that is. Okay, if he were the king, he’d be Babely Baberatheon, first of his name or some such, etc. etc. The thing is, he has great hair and some comely freckles, and a nice pale chest (cancer-free, baby!), and he’s kind of dumb but in that sweet way where it’s like, you could really teach him about things. If nothing else, he’s nice to look at and you’re gonna be looking at your new ruler a lot, so maybe pick someone aesthetically pleasing to thine eyeballs. Am I objectifying him? Who cares. Every woman in Westeros is objectified to the seven hells and back on an hourly basis, so don’t even criticize me for giving a little of what I get.

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Jon’s Rule Would Reframe the Horrors of the Past

Hey, remember when Robert Baratheon started that petty rebellion because he thought Rhaegar Targaryen kidnapped and raped the love of his life, Lyanna Stark? Of course you remember. It was the kind of crap only a man who feels like he’s been unfairly stuck in the friend-kingdom (which doesn’t exist, you fools) would pull. Robert didn’t have all the information, probably a willful decision, and he used what little misinformation he had to start a whole damn war to validate his masculinity, probably. And also free beer and wenches. I digress. The whole reason that war was fought was because everyone (okay, ROBERT) thought Rhaegar was a shitty rapist kidnapper, when really he was also in love with Lyanna (and way better for her than Robert) and she loved him, and they ran off to be together. Then she got pregnant, and out popped a tiny babe she named Aegon, because naming progeny has never been the Targaryen strong suit. But then Lyanna died, and she promised her brother – Ned, the most normal-named person in the kingdoms – to protect the baby and her secret. So Ned adopted lil Aegon and re-named him Jon, but because no one could know who he really was, Ned pretended the kid was his own bastard – which really didn’t sit well with his wife, for reasons that are obvious to literally everyone in the seven kingdoms except for men-folk.

That baby grew up to be the badass Jon Snow, who was faced with immense hardship that made him a much stronger and more resilient (if not particularly smart) person. Were Jon to become king, we could look back upon Robert’s Rebellion for what it really was: Bullshit. We’d all wonder what the hell we’ve been fighting about for decades. It’s kind of a bummer to think about, but also liberating.

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He Unites the Kingdoms (Or Whatever)

Jon is both a Stark of Winterfell and a Targaryen of some place that barely exists anymore. He’s the nephew of the artist formerly known as Khaleesi and now known as the Dragon Queen – which means he can ride a damn dragon and walk through fire, unscathed. He might be dumb, but he’s also sort of indestructible and badass. He’s the son of Ned Stark’s dead sister, which gives him more integrity and character than most people in Westeros, even if he can’t fully articulate it. He’s tight with the people north of the wall. He’s got some connections. His reign would unite the kingdoms, bringing opposing families and ideas together across party-lines (or something). Jon doesn’t even want to sit on that stupid throne, which, as Lord Varys has keenly observed, kind of makes him the best person for the job? He isn’t driven by power, which is crucial. He’s just been driven by red-headed women who are smarter than him his entire life.

He Has Cool Friends

This last reason goes hand in hand with the first, which brings everything full circle. Jon Snow has friends in high (and low, and middle) places. He has the coolest friends, actually. He’s pals with Tyrion – with whom he bonded over their shared feelings of being ostracized by their families. As previously mentioned, his best friend in the whole world is Samwell Tarly, and without him (and Arya, and that Ringo Starr weirdo who calls himself a three-eyed raven), we’d all be flesh-eating wights by now. Jon has Brienne of Tarth, the recently-knighted badass and the coolest damn person in all of Westeros. He has his sisters, who are smart and better than him, and Davos, the only good thing to come of Stannis’ life. Most importantly, Jon has the free folk – namely, Tormund Giantsbane, so named because a giant mistook him for her babe and he suckled at her teat (or so he says, but I totally believe him). Tormund is hot. He has a cool beard. He drinks out of a big horn and overshares during casual hangs. He has an unrequited crush on Brienne (which sucks) but he’s very chill about the whole thing (which makes him cooler). Tormund is a good friend to have, and he makes Jon Snow look cooler just by standing in his general area. We’ve had a mad king.

We’ve had a drunk king. We’ve had a… whatever the hell Cersei is. A wino murder-queen? Sure. I think it’s time we had a cool, hot king who isn’t very bright but that’s okay because he listens to smart people and he doesn’t want to kill anyone and he’s nice to look at. And if we must have a king, Jon Snow is the least violent, least cruel, and least offensive option. Oh and he likes dogs.

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