There are so many reasons to be excited — and maybe a little nervous — for Game of Thrones Season 8, and Emilia Clarke dyeing her hair blonde like Daenerys just ups the ante. Anyone who's ever made the bleach leap knows this is a big deal, and now fans are asking each other what does this mean for the show? Sure, Clarke could just be feeling emotional with gearing up for her final season playing Khaleesi, but the switch to blonde in real life could also mean she's getting ready for hardcore Daenerys stunts — and possibly even a tragic death.
In her caption of the hair Instagram, Clarke makes it clear that her two identities of actor and Mother of Dragons are converging to one. "Mother of dragons meet Emilia. Emilia meet mother of dragons. If you squint just so you might never know," she wrote. Of course, that cordial introduction is after her initial announcement, in which she writes, "AAAAHHHHHHH SHHHHIIIII****** I done did it." Clarke really has taken commitment to her role to the next level with this move. She finishes off her caption by thanking the GoT hair department for "at long last making this magical moment a reality."
One of the main reasons why Clarke's big hair-dyeing moment seems so major is because it could signify an important character arc for Daenerys. Many fans speculate that Sansa's hair is an important symbol in GoT, but this Instagram could mean Daenerys' is as well, especially if Clarke's dye job means she won't be wearing a wig for all — or part — of the final season. Clarke and her noticeably short platinum blonde hair suggest Dany follows in Cersei's footsteps by rocking a shorter 'do for the upcoming season — and possibly for a similar effect.
As Vanity Fair's Julie Miller pointed out, Season 6 ended with "Cersei finally [overcoming] the long-festering limitations of her gender," and doing so without her long, feminine, flow-y locks (which were cut off in that unforgettable public shaming). In Miller's article, GoT's costume designer, Michele Clapton, suggests that Cersei then began evoking her father in image once she took on the role of ruler. Now, Daenerys has always accepted her role as a ruler, even with her long golden locks, but if she goes wig-less next season, showcasing her newly bleached, short, hair, that could mean she also is evoking the male Targaryens, which isn't necessarily a good thing.
Theories that the Daenerys will die in Season 8's Great War abound, and her hair change could reinforce this unfortunate theory. First of all, Season 7 saw Dany give a speech eerily similar to the one Khal Drogo gave before he died, and fans have been closely watching the Mother of Dragons, suspecting that she might end up going mad like her father, Aerys II Targaryen. Could it be Dany's birthright to get power hungry and violent, just like her father did?
During Season 7, GoT fans watched Dany reject Tyrion and Jon's advice to be different from past rulers (like her father) by sticking to peaceful solutions, which resulted in Drogon getting hurt and Daenerys almost being killed. While Clarke's bold new hair color could remain under the iconic Mother of Dragons wig, fans will likely become wary if Dany's sporting an Aerys-like hairdo in the upcoming season.
Many other facts about Season 8 give reason for fans to look forward to the epic show's finale. At July's Con of Thrones, sound designer Paula Fairfield revealed that episodes will be longer than an hour, so there will be plenty of time to wrap up the many intricate storylines. Not only that, but HBO's programming president, Casey Bloys, also hinted that Season 8 may include more episodes than previously expected, so that allows for even more opportunity for characters' true identities to be revealed. However, it also means more time for characters to die — and, in Game of Thrones, deaths are certain.
The fact that Season 7 also reveals one of Dany's dragons, Viserion, became a wight suggests that she might not be as powerful as Daenerys stans might hope. In a vision she had at the House of the Undying, she saw that her fate might not include the Iron Throne. Though she reaches out to touch it, she then seems to realize that her pursuit of it only leads to death and destruction. Perhaps Season 8 will reinforce this theory as well.
It's always a guessing game with Game of Thrones, and, though nobody can be too sure what Clarke's decision to dye her hair platinum blonde means for Daenerys Targaryen, it's almost certain that a lot will happen for her character in Season 8 — tragically or otherwise.