For the last time, Game of Thrones dipped into the world of A Song of Ice and Fire, with the series finale "The Iron Throne." Season 8 began with an episode where the series called back to the pilot episode over and over, bringing the show full circle. In the series finale, once again the script recalled moments throughout the Game of Thrones' run (and a few book nerd moments too.) These Game Of Thrones finale easter eggs are a reminder of how the series built up to this moment.
Some of the callbacks weren't even that obvious. Sansa, for instance, wears a coronation gown that feels like a summation of everything in her life, Tully Blue for her mother, red weirwood leaves for her father, a crown that echos Cersei's tiara, in a shot that recalled when Jon Snow was named King in the North. Direwolves adorn her tiara's peak and her cape.
And finally, for the first time, she wears her hair completely unbraided, a sign of not following anyone's style at all. After years of always styling her hair to reflect the powerful women around her, Sansa has settled on her own style: Queen in the North.
Here are some other easter eggs you may have missed.
1. Khal Drogo's Promise
Speaking in Valyrian and Dothraki, Daenerys thanked those who followed her to Westeros and defeated her enemies.
You killed my enemies in their iron suits. You tore down their stone houses. You gave me the Seven Kingdoms.
This is a direct callback to Drogo's speech in Season 1 when he promises his Sun and Stars he will do just that for her.
2. Maester Aemon
"Love is the death of duty." It's a line spoken by Maester Aemon in Season 4 that Jon quotes.
We all do our duty when there is no cost to it. What is honor compared to a woman's love? What is duty against the feel of a newborn son in your arms, or the memory of a brother's smile?
One could say this is Jon Snow's entire arc. He joined the Night's Watch when there was no cost. The moment he had something that mattered, family, he quit. He's losing his honor for Dany's smile.
But his sisters are what matter in the end. His love for them is the death of duty to his Queen.
3. The House of The Undying
The showrunners wrote the House of the Undying scene in Season 2 before they knew Daenerys' fate. (Martin told them after Season 3.) Still, this perfect retcon of that scene to match this one was a great moment.
4. Daenerys and Ygritte's Deaths
Compare Jon Snow holding Daenerys the way he held Ygritte when she died in Season 4. Though Jon didn't fire the arrow that killed Ygritte, he rescued and trained the boy who did, making him responsible for the deaths of both the women he loved.
5. Howland Reed?
Everyone is talking about Robyn Arryn looking pretty good on the far side of puberty this morning, but there's another easter egg in the dragon pit council scene. This mystery man, sitting next to Sam. If you go through the process of elimination with everyone viewers can identify, it's hard to ignore that this is most likely the long-awaited Howland Reed, father of Meera and Jojen, and leader of the Crannogmen.
6. Lady Crane
This scene references when Arya accidentally wound up finding a mother figure, in a woman who played Cersei Lannister on stage. Lady Crane was the first time Arya expressed her desire to find out "what's west of Westeros." In the finale, she fulfilled that wish to find out.
7. Brienne Filling Out Ser Jaime's Page
This was a big one for book readers. Ser Jaime's lack of "great deeds" in the Kingsguard book bothers him greatly, so much so, the show actually has a scene where Brienne and Jaime discuss it. She tells him there's still room for him to do some. Now she'll make sure they're recorded.
8. Tyrion's Joke
"I once walked into a brothel with a honeycomb and a jackass...." is a joke Tyrion has now started three times on the show. First in his Season 1 trial, then with Grey Worm and Missandei in Meereen, and now at the end of the show. No, there is no end to it.
9. Full Circle To Castle Black
The show ended where it began, the Wall. In the pilot's opening scene, three rangers ride down and head out beyond the Wall to their doom. In the show's closing moments, Jon Snow and Tormund take that same ride, leading the wildlings out into the wild snowy yonder, to a world now safe from fear.