9 White Walker Death Spiral Reddit Theories Show 'Game Of Thrones' Fans Are Confused By The Night King
In case you didn't find the White Walkers on Game of Thrones terrifying enough, they love to drive their message of death to all humankind home with a big display. With Tormund, Beric, and Edd seeing it firsthand in the Season 8 premiere, there are already a ton of Reddit theories about the Night King's symbol on Game of Thrones. Little Lord Umber as a wight was nailed to a wall with limbs of the other slain Northerners around him to make a spiral symbol. This isn't the first time that the Night King has utilized the dead to make a symbol. So as Game of Thrones approaches its endgame, it's got people speculating what the Night King is saying with this symbol.
Back in the very first episode of Game of Thrones, some dead Wildlings were assembled in a symbol by the White Walkers. Since then, the Night King's artistry has popped up a few more times — and even seemed to be present in the cave drawings at Dragonstone. But while you might have missed these symbols before the Season 8 premiere, they're clearly very important to the Night King. For example, back in Season 3, Episode 3, Mance Rayder noted, "Always the artists," upon seeing the spiral symbol made up of dead horses. Mance noting this means that even though viewers have only seen the symbol a handful of times, it's clearly something the White Walkers do all the time.
As you can see by these photos assembled by Reddit user SyntheticLife, there are two different symbols that the White Walkers have created — a circle with a line through it (like in the first episode) and a spiral (like in the Season 8 premiere). Both types of symbols have popped up in the cave drawings done by the Children of the Forest that Jon showed to Daenerys. So if you think there has to be more to these symbols than the Night King just getting creative, these Reddit theories are for you.
1. A Ritualistic Symbol From The Children Of The Forest
According to Helmer1134, the Night King may be channeling his (ahem) roots by using a symbol used in the rituals by the Children of the Forest. The symbol was present when the Children of the Forest created the Night King, aka the first White Walker, by tying him to a weirwood tree and driving a dragonglass dagger through his heart.
This theory actually matches what the writer of the Season 8 premiere, Dave Hill, told the New York Post. "As we saw with Bran and the Three-Eyed Raven, the spiral pattern was sacred to the Children of the Forest, who created the Night King by sacrificing a captured man in a spiral 'henge of stones,'" Hill said. "The Night King then adopted the symbol as a sort of blasphemy, like Satan with the upside-down cross." So Helmer1134's theory is one of the more straightforward and writer-approved guesses (if you believe Hill is telling the whole truth) out there.
2. It Means "Kill All Humans"
Since the Children of the Forest created the White Walkers to kill the First Men, Remus88Romulus theorized that the symbol is some sort of rune or spell that the White Walkers follow that instructs them to kill people. So once the army of the dead has taken out a group of people, they create the symbol again to show they've accomplished their mission.
3. A Sign That The Night King Wants To Be Human Again
Since the Night King's human life was taken away from him by the Children of the Forest, maybe he's so angry because he just wants to be human again. That's what Moeez_Malik considered with the theory that the Night King is using the symbol to mark his way home where he might be able to become a man again. Aw, it almost makes you feel bad for the Night King ... almost.
4. The Night King's Sigil
The royal families within the Seven Kingdoms all have house sigils, so couldn't the Night King have one? His name is "King" after all, so this undead royalty could be celebrating his victories in battle with his own sigil as Crowd_Chatter guessed. Although this theory from Mtolivepickle that the Night King's sigil is a raven's skull with an eye in the center would debunk that.
5. The Night King Was A Targaryen
6. It Symbolizes King's Landing & Where The Mad King Stored Wildfire
As part of a larger overall theory, UCJAgent discussed how the symbol could match where the "caches of wildfire" are in King's Landing. As Jaime told Brienne back in Season 3 (and as Cersei utilized in Season 6), the Mad King Aerys II Targaryen had stored wildfire "all over the city — beneath the Sept of Baelor and the slums of Flea Bottom. Under houses, stables, taverns. Even beneath the Red Keep itself."
Using a map of King's Landing and the knowledge that there are eight entrances to the city, UCJAgent theorized that the Mad King purposefully placed the wildfire in a way to match the Targaryen sigil — and that this wildfire will be what eventually destroys the Night King.
7. The White Walkers' Blood Magic
Blood magic and fantasy go hand in hand. And just like Mirri Maz Duur, Melisandre, and Maggy the Frog, maybe the White Walkers have their own type of blood magic. As Aixelsydguy theorized, the symbol could be part of a White Walker blood magic ritual that allows the White Walkers to reanimate corpses.
8. It's The White Walkers' Final Destination
This is actually piecing together some theories, but some people think the spiral represents the weirwood trees. Reddit user bro8619 took that one step further and noted how the symbols are actually representing the Isle of Faces in the Gods Eye Lake. Lame_of_Thrones thinks that the Night King and his army are headed to the Isle of Faces, which is an important location for the Children of the Forest and the First Men and is supposedly filled with weirwoods. So maybe the Night King has some business to attend to there and has been marking his army's destination.
9. It Shows How To Defeat The Night King
Keeping the weirwoods on the Isle of Faces in mind, zyuko22 wondered if the burning spiral symbol in the Season 8 premiere gave away how to defeat the Night King. Beric Dondarrion stabbed the center of the symbol (as in, the poor Umber child) with his flaming sword and then the rest of the (literal) limbs went up in flames. According to zyuko22's theory, they believe that there's a "Grand Weirwood" that exists on the Isle of Faces and if it's burned down, then the Night King will lose all his power and he and his wights will be destroyed.
Whether you think the symbol is simply a grotesque display of power or something much more, these theories will give you something to ponder as the army of the dead heads to Winterfell.