There’s a lot to love about Game of Thrones, which might go a long way in explaining its position as one of the most monolithic pop culture phenomenons of the past century. You got the dragons, and the zombie creatures, and the kickass, insanely ambitious action sequences. The huge cast of beloved characters, and the massive twists and turns the story takes in bringing us to their ultimate faith. And, occasionally, you have a pretty good drama show too! I mean, occasionally (and, frankly, a lot less so as the series went on.) But, of course, we would be remiss not to mention the main factor in people’s love for Game of Thrones. The thing that, above all else, draws viewers to the series in record amounts.
I am, of course, talking about Jon Snow’s trusty side-kick, beloved best friend (beat it, Tarley!), and loyal pet: Ghost the Dire Wolf. He has been an essential, irreplaceable element in the show every since its first episode, in which the Stark children found him as the runt of a litter (and most adorable of puppers) and, in an act of sympathy/mockery, assigned Jon Snow to his care. Well, jokes on the rest of those fucking dire wolves and their asshole owners, as they are all dead and/or missing, and Ghost is still around, kicking all the ass, just being the absolute best.
…Sometimes. Because, you see, Ghost has been used pretty damn sparingly in the past few seasons of Game of Thrones, with the legendary direwolf MIA for most of the series’s biggest moments. Where was Ghost during the Battle of the Bastards? Or the mission North of the Wall? (maybe he wisely knew what a stupid fucking plan that was and noped the fuck out of that sideplot.) Or when Jon Snow, y’know, fucked his aunt (as it always bares repeating, in both bold AND italic font.) He wasn’t there for any of it, which is something of a war crime, I believe.
Now the official reason from Weiss and Benioff is that Ghost, being a gigantic computer generated wolf, is expensive, time consuming, and pretty difficult to create. And with so much focus on the dragons, white walkers, and other CGI beasties, Ghost’s appearances went to the wayside as the series went on. But a justifiable war crime is still a war crime, HBO! They will be hearing from The Hague shortly.
And just to add more offenses to their crime, today’s Game of Thrones Season 8 character poster release included over 20 characters, ranging from Daenerys Targaryen all the way to Grey Worm. And, yet, in the nearly two dozen wide spread…not ONE SINGLE SPOT for the greatest pet in all of Westeros? Only one gif could accurately sum this up, HBO marketing team:
I mean, EURON GREYJOY got a character poster. Fucking Euron Greyjoy! The dude is a conniving, diabolical little prick, and unlike all the other conniving, diabolical little pricks on the show, is pretty damn boring to boot. Now if he had a pet of his own, like a giant squid named “Reaper” or something, maybe I would get it. But, then again, that would just lead me to demanding a character poster of the squid. So we’d be back to square one, essentially.
Now I know what you are thinking: why would we get a Ghost character poster before a Drogon character poster, or a Ser Pounce character poster? I mean, aren’t they the more substantial and beloved pets in the Game of Thrones universe? Well, a few things on that: 1) Go fuck yourself with that nonsense statement 2) Ser Pounce is DEAD, move on already 3) a dragon can’t fit on an Iron Throne, that’s just fucking silly. Get your head out of your ass.
In the grand scheme of things, ignoring Ghost in the run-up to this final season is going to look mighty foolish. After all, like Jar Jar Binks, he’s the key to all of this. We all know this is ending with Ghost taking the throne anyways, leading into a new Golden Age of Doggos for Westeros.
At least…it fucking better. Our big wolf murdering machine/very good boy deserves as much.
If you want to check out all the non-Ghost, and thus lesser, character posters, here’s all twenty of them.
The Saga of Ghost, with Additional Adventures From Some Other Silly People (a.k.a. Game of Thrones) will return for its eighth and final season on April 14.