With the final season of Game of Thrones finished it left audiences at best wanting. Here is my vision on how the Song of Ice and Fire should end in television format.
First of all, season eight would not be it’s last but instead a prequel of sorts. Finale of season eight did give us the tools to strike out into five (yes, five) different directions with five different characters. Each character could get their own 10-20 episode arch that would eventually culminate into one or two seasons of full blown GOT as in the olden days.
Season 1: Broken King and broken kingdom
Season one would concentrate it’s story to Bran the Broken and his merry court of misfits. We would see the overall rebuilding of Kings landing and how the rest of Westeros fares. Also the political climate of the Six and One Kingdoms would be established as polite but not overly warm. This would also setup the other character branches with small hints at the comings and goings of others.
Bran is king but not a very good one. Day to day operations are relegated to the small council which the king barely attends. Bran is more interested in his raven duties and spends most of his time getting some birds eyes voyering going. Rumors have begun that an heir to the Targaryan throne lives in the north. The true power behind the throne that is not is Tyrion and his political machinations. Expect from this season more political dramas and intrique than sword and sorcery and storytelling exposition.
Season 1 would end with the sudden evacuation of Kings Landing with Bran uttering the words “She is coming” (read on to find out who 😉 )
Season 2: What’s west of Westeros?
Season 2 would follow Aryas’ journey to discover “what is west of Westeros”. Eventually she would find a new continent where she discovers a whole new civilization. Perhaps they are the survivors of the fall of Valyria? This would give a change for an interesting backstory to the Targaryan line and more details to the ancient Valyria (flashbacks). Aryan brings with her back to westeros the knowledge of forging true valyrian steel and once learning what is going on, returns to the new land and negotiates their support in the coming war. Against who? Read on.
The season would end with Arya landing at the north after witnessing what happened at Kings Landing.
Season 3: The Queen in the North
Season 3 would concentrate on Sansa and her reign as queen of the north. I have no idea what would happen here. Maybe a slight combination of political drama with some family drama attached. The wildlings are causing trouble and though Jon refuses to acknowledge the fact, he is their king. This means Sansa needs to negotiate with her cousin and try to find some kind of an accomodation. Also the other houses in the north are itching for more independence and not everyone are as eager to have her on the throne (some were rooting for Jon) so a couple of rebellions needs to be put down and she does it harshly.
Sansa will be closer to Cersei 2.0 in terms of ruthlessness against her enemies and the inclination to forgive disloyalty. This attitude will put her in hot water with the other lords similarly how Rob’s execution of Rickard Karstark split his army into two.
Season 3 will end with Bran arriving to the north with a bunch or refugees.
Season 4: The true North
Season 4 gives us events at the wall and beyond. The men of the nights watch will have to redefine their purpose with the night king now gone and the threat of white walkers ended. Also let’s get some equality (or woke if you want to see it that way) points by adding women to the ranks of the crows as well.
With summer arriving to the north of the wall for the first time in a long time, old and new things come to light. Half of the nights watch duties will be patrolling the north and serving as police force among the wildlings (not that all of then are accepting that. Thens especially will be fun to deal with). The other half is exploration: the ice is melting and new interesting locations are revealed that also allows deeper lore to be revealed about the white walkers, children of the forest and the prophecies that may not yet be fulfilled after all.
Season 4 will end with Jon at castle black opening a scroll with a message from either Bran, Tyrio or Sansa (or all of them) and reading it. Pure terror in his face, Jon grabs Longclaw and closes the door behind him leaving the scroll on the table. Audience can’t read it however we can guess what it reads…
Season 5: Queen of ashes
Season 5 gives us the most shocking (or not) revelation: Daenerys survives. Or well, she does and she doesn’t. Drogon flies to the east eventually landing on an island populated by the children of the forest. Seeing and feeling the dragons blight and grief, the children take pity on him and attempt to bring Dany back with dragon glass. They succeed and at first, Daenerys seems like her old self (think Dany before her conquest of Westeros begun). However she is confused. Her memories are not all there.
This season mostly involves Daenerys reconstructing her memories with the help of the Children eventually leading to her revelation about who killed her. This will push her to embrace the powers that begun to emerge in her which her humanity and kind spirit had kept in bay so far and she begins her path of vengeance by slaughtering the Children an raising them. The first members of her new army.
Oh and as an aside: she tries to touch Drogon but her touch “burns” (think burning similar to extreme cold) him and he realizes that Dany is lost and flies off. Maybe in search of Jon?
Dany eventually finds herself on the island of Naath where we will see her attempting to recruit Gray Worm. The leader of the unsullied however has chosen to put his spear aside and lead a peaceful life on the island. She will have none of that but instead freezes the island and all it’s inhabitants adding to her growing army.
Season 5 ends with Dany over dying Grey worm. He asks her what is she and she replies “I am the Nights queen”
Season 6-7-8: The Song of Ice and Fire
The rest of the seasons will be Daenerys’s (or the nights queens) conquest of Westeros. Winter is coming with her but this time she is not interested in a throne: she wants revenge. Revenge against Jon. Revenge against Sansa. Revenge against all the living. She is the true villain, the true white walker. And an army of the dead come with her. This allows some interesting comebacks in the form of her resurrecting the Lannister twins (among many many others like certain dragon under the sea) but not as mindless zombies. Her powers have evolved into something more. Allowing those she raised to have some measure of awareness. Just enough so they understand just how fucked they really are. Eventually her armies find themselves North of the wall.
Tyrion remains behind at King’s Landing and watches Daenerys raise his siblings from the grave. Rather than join the Night Queens army, our favorite dwarf decides to take to the flames so he would not meet such a gruesome afterlife. This death could give Jaime the strength of will to break from Dany (Tyrion could also fake his death and Drogon would save him since T is actually a Targaryan).
Cersei? She will serve but very unwillingly. There are other Lannisters (and Baratheons) Dany could raise most notable of them Tywin as a military leader after Jaime’s break from her will.
How will the story end? Jon is the prince that was promised, Azor Ahai. His purpose is to either destroy Dany or seal her away in the North by reforging the wall and he will do it probably at the expense of his own life. A person Jon loves will be used to forge the sword Lightbringer – the only sword that can harm Daenerys (Valyrian steel will not work due to… reasons). This could be one of his cousins or maybe he found a new wife he has to stab. No luck for Joni boy in the love department regardless. Could be Sam too (by the power of bromance!).
Here it is. My very quick draft on how I would see the overall story evolve from the abysmal ending of season eight.