Even after death, Daenerys Targaryen was a bit of an enigma.
The murder of Emilia Clarke’s icy-haired aspiring queen Daenerys, daughter of the Mad King Aerys Targaryen who was killed on the Iron Throne during his reign, on HBO’s Game of Thrones was one of the most shocking moments on a series overflowing with them. After Daenerys succumbed to the (seemingly genetic) Targaryen madness on the series’ penultimate episode — torching the capital city of King’s Landing to the ground and murdering innocents and enemies alike — she finally reached the Iron Throne. But after spending years journeying to the coveted Throne room, Daenerys never actually took her place as the ruler of Westeros. Before she could even take a seat, her nephew-slash-lover Jon Snow (Kit Harington) confronted her about her decisions and assassinated her for the good of the realm — a choice that led to his banishment back to the Night’s Watch, bringing Jon full circle. Daenerys’ grieving dragon, Drogon, then torched the Iron Throne to the ground, gingerly scooped up Dany’s body, and flew off to an unknown location away from Westeros.
Many fans have wondered what happened to Daenerys after she was killed, where Drogon took her, and if there was even a body left to bury. Now, these Game of Thrones mysteries have been unraveled, thanks to the commentary track on the DVD release of the show’s final season (via Entertainment Weekly).
On the track, showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss revealed what Drogon did with Daenerys’ body, debunking the disturbing idea that Drogon ate his mother and master. When Clarke noted that dragons usually eat the bodies of their masters, Benioff replied, “Drogon’s not going to eat you. He’s not a cat. Did you see how gently he was nudging you?”
So, it’s as simple as that: Drogon didn’t fly away with Daenerys’ body, dump it somewhere, and devour the remains of his human “mother.” At the end of the Game of Thrones series finale, Samwell Tarly (John Bradley) notes that Drogon was last seen flying east toward “Volan–” before he’s cut off. This huge clue hinted that Drogon took Dany to Volantis, the place where Daenerys and her brother Viserys (Harry Lloyd) spent time in following the assassination of their father during Robert’s Rebellion.
Benioff took on another theory about Drogon during that scene, but provided far less closure. We might never know exactly why Drogon destroyed the Throne after Daenerys died, but Benioff did hint at his intention in relation to Dany’s own desires: “If [Dany is] not going to sit on it, no one’s going to sit on it.”
Jon Snow knew nothing… until he was totally sure
When discussing anything even peripherally related to Daenerys’ swift murder — including what happened to her body thereafter — one will inevitably speak the name of the man who did the deed: Jon Snow. Daenerys’ fiery rampage through the streets of King’s Landing left countless civilians dead, and it became clear that her ruthlessness knew no bounds — a fact that left Jon with a big decision to make. After Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) quit his post as Daenerys’ Hand of the Queen in protest, Jon visited him in captivity, and the two had a serious talk about Jon’s next steps. Would he turn the other cheek to Dany’s shocking crimes, choosing to love her even in her mad-with-power state? Or would he turn a knife into her, ending the chaos and destruction she brought to Westeros before it grew even bigger and killed even more people?
We all know that Jon ultimately chose the latter, stabbing Daenerys in the chest as the two embraced. And according to the Game of Thrones DVD commentary, Jon didn’t know he was going to do that until seconds before it happened. His talk with Tyrion didn’t fully convinced him to make the big choice — speaking with Dany and hearing her warped thoughts on power and privilege was what actually spurred him to end her life.
“He doesn’t know he’s going to betray her until right at the end,” Harington explained. “In Jon’s head, it’s a number of [reasons: Dany] doesn’t factor in anyone else’s decisions and it also means [Dany] is going to kill my sisters, so it becomes [my] family vs. her.”
In the end, Westeros was better off without Daenerys — its nobles selected Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright) to become the new ruler of the Six Kingdoms (his sister, Sophie Turner’s Sansa Stark, ruled the newly independent kingdom of the North at Winterfell), and the Realm was seemingly safe and sound. As for Dany, she may be dead but at least she didn’t become dragon chow.