Spring is nearly here, and while that usually gives Game of Thrones fans cause to rejoice, 2017 is proving to be as torturous as we feared. According to Liam Cunningham, also known as Ser Davos, we may not be getting Season 7 until July.
But that has not (and will not) stop the fans' excitement. From a supposed major Arya Stark reunion to an actress hinting at her own survival, theories continue to pop up everywhere. So, will Cersei Lannister be Season 7's Big Bad? If she is, what does that mean for her twin and lover Jaime?
The older of the Lannister boys has always been a bit of a wildcard. While he was a clear antagonist in Season 1 of #GameofThrones, his heroic side shines through by the third. Now, however, we find the Kingslayer at a crossroads: Will he embrace being a hero, or fall back into temptation?
From the looks of it, I'd be willing to bet that #JaimeLannister will prove to be an unlikely but undoubtedly true hero in the end. Here's why...
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Jaime Always Wanted To Be A Hero
Jaime spent most of his childhood admiring knights, hoping to one day be like them. While he had a dark side (the side that loved Cersei as more than just a sister), more than anything he wanted to be a knight, someone strong and heroic.
Getting so entangled with Cersei made him forget this for a long time, but when he meets Brienne, she reminds him of what it's like to chase after those noble intentions. During the infamous bath scene he admits to her in that he still longs to be considered a true knight, and that it kills him to be called a Kingslayer. It's a vulnerable moment, particularly for a Lannister, and one that starts to shift the audience's perspective.
Season 3 was a massive turning point for Jaime. Thanks to Brienne, he could no longer suppress his true nature. Even though he is her captive, and they've tried to kill each other multiple times, he saves her. While he didn't yet know of the consequences of that decision, he knew the risks. He did it anyway. After gaining his freedom — able to see Cersei again as soon as possible — he rides back for Brienne, not wanting to leave her behind.
He jumps into a bear pit, one-handed, without a weapon. Most incredible about this scene is that there is no hesitation — it's a reflex. He automatically pushes himself in front of her, ensuring her safety before his own.
If Jaime were truly a bad person, he wouldn't have acted so bravely. He would have rode away, perhaps without a second thought. But the fact that he was willing to die for a woman that he'd tried to kill only a few days earlier proves his heroism.
That being said, this all occurred far from King's Landing, where he could arguably act without jeopardizing his troubled romance with Cersei. This is important to remember for the upcoming season.
Cersei Is His Greatest Weakness
Picture Jaime Lannister, if you will, with an angel and a devil on either shoulder. Brienne is his angel, the woman who brings out his greatest, most pure characteristics. She doesn't create them, she isn't the reason for them, but she helps to show him what he is capable of. "There's a really deep connection and a mutual respect," says Coster-Waldau on their relationship. This, of course, makes Cersei his own personal devil. She is his sinful side in every way you can imagine. What makes Cersei so dangerous is that she is a firm believer of the end justifying the means. She is willing to go to extreme lengths to secure what she wants, and she has no problem with Jaime doing the same. She brings out the more antagonistic side of him.
Remember the guy who pushed Bran, a mere child, out of a window in the first episode? Remember the man who left Ned Stark to die in the streets? The arrogant knight who threatened the Tullys and actually meant it? It doesn't seem like this could be the same man who jumped into a bear pit to save Brienne, but it is. This is what Cersei brings out of him. She manipulates his love for her because she knows she can, and in the end, while she does love him, she loves herself more.
Jaime Can Overcome His Twin's Manipulation
Most people believe that Jaime cares for Cersei above all else; that given the choice, he will always choose her. But this isn't the case, and there's actually evidence to prove it. Remember in Season 4 when his little brother, Tyrion, was potentially facing execution after being accused of killing the King? Let's put this in perspective: Tyrion, someone Cersei has always hated, is accused of killing Jaime's own son, Joffrey. Cersei begs Jaime to kill him for it. If Jaime would choose Cersei above all else, Tyrion would have been dead by morning. Instead, not only does Jaime try to make a deal with his father that would guarantee his own misery, but he frees Tyrion from jail and helps him escape. This is exactly the opposite of what Cersei begged of him, but he did it because it isn't Cersei, but family that he holds most dear.
This is the same reason that he doesn't force guards to go after Brienne in Season 6. He allows her to leave Riverrun, knowing full well that she will be going to Sansa Stark and helping her rise to power.
Cersei hates Sansa just as much as she does Tyrion. She wants her dead, and she wants to wipe out her entire family. But Jaime cares for Brienne, and their bond is clearly more important to him than Cersei is. If it wasn't, well, we know how that would have ended. Because family is what Jaime cares about most, it's safe to assume that after the Season 6 finale, the twins' relationship is about to get rocky.
Will Jaime Be The One To Kill Cersei?
Season 6 went out with a bang — literally. Cersei became the Mad Queen, using wildfire to blow up the Sept of Baelor with the High Sparrow, Queen Margaery, and countless others inside. Destroying a good chunk of King's Landing along with killing some main and beloved characters was shocking, but it didn't end there. While Cersei hated Margaery, she knew that her son, Tommen, loved her with all of his heart. She knew exactly what her death would mean to Tommen. So, when he put down his crown and committed suicide by jumping out of a castle window, it was sad, but not surprising. Cersei's reaction, however, was the final sign that she had become the Mad Queen. She didn't weep; she wasn't angry; she showed no emotion whatsoever. She was collected, almost apathetic, which leads us to believe that she knew exactly the outcome of her actions. The death of her last surviving child (the death of the King) was less important to her than her own rise to power.
Jaime and Cersei don't speak in the finale. He returns to the city in ruins, arriving in time for Cersei's coronation. They only exchange a look, but it says more than words could. He looks at her not with love, but with a mixture of disappointment and horror. He, like the audience, realizes what Cersei — the woman he loves — has become, and perhaps has always been. She caused the death of their only son, and I believe this will push him over the edge.
This anger will turn to hatred, and one of two things will happen. His first option is to leave King's Landing and find Brienne, severing ties with his sister completely, perhaps even helping to overthrow her. However, his hatred may be so strong that he will want to kill her himself. Either way, by letting Cersei go, he will be letting his villainous tendencies go, too. He will play a big part in the destruction of arguably the most dangerous ruler that Westeros has ever seen.
Jaime Lannister has been a wildcard in Game of Thrones. He began as someone who was easy to hate, an arrogant Kingslayer who was in one of the most twisted relationships in the show — textbook Lannister. But he has grown to be so much more than that. He stole our hearts the moment he dove into a bear pit to save Brienne, and while he's far from perfect, he has the essence and the capabilities of a true hero. With a bit of luck on our side, we'll see him embrace his full potential in Season 7.
Do you think Jaime is more hero than villain? Which would you rather see him become? Let us know down in the comments!