[Spoilers for Game of Thrones season 8 below.]
Jaime Lannister’s story is one full of pain, secrets, and familial...tension. Despite your feelings on how his story ended in “The Bells,” you can’t deny that there’s been some thoughtful, moving development from the man who left his beloved sister to fight alongside the North. If you’ve been a fan of Jaime through his trials and tribulations, rooting for him to the bitter end, then this fan-made video of his greatest moments and his life will be the best thing you watch today.
“Even though I have my differences with how his arc turned into, I still had to explore it more thoroughly and try and make sense of what happened,” writes the clip’s editor. A lot of fans are trying to do this too, and the editing of this video certainly delivers on that. It starts with Daenerys’ monologue on who Jaime was to her growing up, which was the man who killed her father in cold blood and sat on the Iron Throne as he died at his feet. It’s followed with other wrongs he’s done, as told by Catelyn Stark, Sansa Stark, and even Bran. And while those are all things he did, the video sets the words against his actions—from helping Brienne to the true story of why he killed Aerys Targaryen.
The Lannister name has always been a kind of plague on Jaime, but not as much as “Kingslayer” has. And, very interestingly, the video shows some major foreshadowing involving Jon Snow and that story. The parallels between what forced Jaime to kill the Mad King, and what Jon is currently undergoing with Daenerys, begin clanging around the 3 minute mark. The story he tells Brienne in the bath—one of the best performances from Nikolaj Coster-Waldau—is one of anguish. He didn’t want to kill the king, and begged him multiple times to surrender, yet had no choice. Jon doesn’t have the chance to plead with Dany in this way, instead having to witness her carnage first-hand. The side-by-side of Jaime asking, “Would you have done it? Would you have kept your oath then?” with Jon’s horrified face tells it all. Jon will not be able to bend the knee much longer.
Jaime had a piss-poor death and ending to his arc, considering all he’s gone through and seemingly grown. Saying he doesn’t care about innocents—when he literally killed his king to save them—and then saying he’s hateful like his sister is weird. And then dying with said sister/lover in his arms after breaking his allegiance with her at the end of Season 7 was annoying, to say the least. Still, a lame ending does not a bad character make, and this clip is proof enough of that.