Who Is 'Game Of Thrones' New Kingsguard? You've Seen The Silent Champion Before
There was a lot going on in Sunday's finale of Game Of Thrones, and much of the narrative fell into the WTF? category. So with that being said, you've been warned: obvious spoilers ahead. In Sunday's Season 5 finale we saw blood, death, revenge, humiliation, and magic; the whole GOT kit and caboodle. It seems like everyone's storyline got twisted dramatically, and one quite literally had knives twisted dramatically into him. Cersei's long hair is shorn and she's made to walk through King's Landing, naked, to the Red Keep, jeered at and degraded by her subjects. Jon Snow is killed by his men. Sansa's story fizzled, but at least there was some promise there: we saw her and Reek escape from Winterfell during the melee between the Boltons and the Baratheons. In all the hubbub, you might have let one detail wash over you: the enormous, silent Kingsguard that sweeps Cersei off her bloody feet when she returns to the Red Keep. His name is Ser Robert Strong, but we're pretty damn certain that he's the reanimated corpse of Gregor "The Mountain" Clegane.
This is what we know about The Mountain: he is said to be the most brutal warrior in the seven kingdoms, known for his quick temper. He stands at almost eight feet tall and wears near inpententrable armor; for all intents and purposes, he is near-invincible. The older brother of Sandor "The Hound" Clegane, the Mountain tortured his younger brother during childhood and very badly burned his face, leading to his fear of fire. The Mountain is responsible for one of the most infamous and controversial deaths in Game Of Thrones history, that of Prince Oberyn Martell from Dorne. The two of them battled in the trial by combat of Tyrion Lannister, and though it looked like Oberyn had the upper hand, his quest for personal vengeance against the Mountain for the rape and murder of his sister blinded him, and the tides turned quickly when the Hound smashed his skull.
But, during the trial, Oberyn pierced the Mountain's leg with his sword that was tipped with viper venom, which slowly and grossly poisoned him. The creepy Qyburn, however, proposes to Cersei that he can salvage the Mountain, though not necessarily by saving his life. Maester Pycelle warns against it, but Cersei is like, 'Hell yeah! Do whatever weird science you gotta do. Just get it done.' Qyburn, who lost his maester's chains and was thrown out of the Citadel for unethical experiments, then starts living out his Dr. Frankenstein fantasies and reanimating the corpse.
It would be logical that Ser Robert Strong (not a very creative alias) is the former Mountain come back from the dead. There signs to point to this: he's the same build as the Mountain, obviously. He wears a suit of armor and, in the book series A Song Of Ice And Fire, it is said by the other men of the Kingsguard that Strong never removes his mask. As Qyburn told Cersei when Strong picked her up off her feet at her somber homecoming, the guard had taken a vow of silence until all of her enemies are defeated. (She did not look too unpleased with that.) And speaking of Qyburn, he also introduces the terrifying Golden Knight as the perfect warrior, the one that he has been working on in the dungeons of the Red Keep, writhing under that sheet.
So it seems the theory that Robert Strong is actually the Mountain, but "changed," as Qyburn described, is all but confirmed. There has been more magic in Season 5 of Game Of Thrones than any season before, with Arya at the House of Black and White and the Whitewalkers raising the dead, not to mention Melisandre's sexy, evil sorcery. So it would stand to reason that the new member of the Kingsguard is undead, too, and it's the very murderer that championed for Cersei at her brother's trial.
There's also another, more far-fetched fan theory about another huge Clegane we once knew that makes us want this theory to be true: the Gravedigger theory. Some fans propose that the Hound, the Mountain's brother, Sandor, who was traveling with Arya Stark, is not dead. We never saw his body, which is always a calculated choice in the GOT universe. The theory goes that after the Hound was wounded, he was saved by the Elder brothers, and discovered by Brienne of Tarth:
This Elder Brother knows much about The Hound and admits that he came across him while wounded and did his best to help him. Brienne then notices a very large man at the monastery who is digging graves. His head and face are almost completely covered, but Brienne can tell he is limping from what could be a healing leg wound (the exact type that The Hound sustained). The Hound’s horse is at the Quiet Isle stables — another hint that The Hound is likely nearby. His horse is notorious for being uncontrollable by any other than The Hound himself.
And if the Hound, too, was saved from near-death, that can only mean that the two brothers have to remeet for what those same avid fans call "Cleganebowl," which would be the ultimate battle. So we don't know for sure if the Hound is still alive, though I personally do have a soft spot for Sandor (he lived a rough life!). But I would bet all the Lannisters' gold that Ser Robert Strong is none other than Gregor "The Mountain" Clegane himself.
As for the night's biggest cliffhanger —whether or not Jon Snow is really dead — Check out the video below to see why he might not really be a goner:
Images: Macall B. Polay/HBO; Giphy