Game of Thrones Season 8 is still at least six months away. Filming is drawing to a close with the wrap party last weekend, which means the rumor mill has begun flying into overtime. There are some plot points fans assume will happen. Someone will wind up on the Iron Throne, for instance. The big fight against the Night King is coming. And the two Targaryens will discover they're related and wind up together. But what if that's not the case? Could Dany and *Gendry* get married instead?
Does it sound crazy? Consider the following: Jon Snow is the King in the North and heir to the Iron Throne. This means the goal Dany has worked for her entire life is suddenly going to be taken from her in the 11th hour by a more rightful successor to the throne. Does anyone really think she's going to take this well?
Consider too, Jon already has natural allies in strategic places, through no fault of his own. Sansa is going to side with him, especially since making him Lord of the Seven Kings frees up the Queen in the North position. Meanwhile, Dany's killing of Sam's father and brother means he's the heir to not just the Tarly estate, but the entire Reach now the Tyrell line is extinct thanks to the Lannisters. And Sam's devotion is to Jon, and no one else. This puts the two largest parts of Westeros in Jon's column.
Dany needs to think fast about how to bring allies over to her side. Cersei's not going to back her. Jaime will be like his father, only backing when there's someone with a clear majority.
But the Baratheon name has massive clout. Robert was really popular with the smallfolk, even if viewers know he was a useless drunk. Joffrey was too, remember, the common folk blamed all of Joffrey's decisions on Tyrion. And Tommen and his queen were beloved, righteous and one with the Seven. That's three Baratheons with stellar reputations in a row, the fact the last two didn't have a drop of Baratheon blood not withstanding.
So let's say Dany decides she's not marrying Jon (or Aegon) because she does not want to give up the Iron Throne to him, or share power. What better option than to marry a Baratheon, one who owes his allegiance to her because she proclaimed his bastardy null and void?
Joe Dempsie suggests Gendry's birthright certainly comes into play next season. During Con of Thrones, he told fansite Watchers on the Wall:
As the years go on, his potential significance [has become] more and more apparent, and potential is an important word. There’s a lot of elements of his character and his parentage that make him potentially powerful or dangerous, and he’s constantly learning more about himself. It’s almost impossible to know where he’s going to go now, based on both his ‘political’ clout, if he ever learns who he is, and his personality.
Ever since the show brought Gendry back last season, I've been waiting for his "heir to the Stormlands" position to become a major plot point. Personally, I thought it would be part of Westeros consolidating for Jon. After all, the show took pains last year to confirm they quickly became fast friends.
But having Gendry betray Jon and side with Dany (and marry her) would be a far more unexpected twist. It definitely fits into how things regularly go down in A Song of Ice and Fire.
Will Dany wind up randomly married to a blacksmith? Fans will find out when Game of Thrones' final season decides to show up on HBO in 2019.