So, I have a new article on Cracked. You should definitely read it here if you’re a GoT fan or if you love me and can spare a quarter of a second to make my life a little brighter today.
Did you read it? Good! As a reward, enjoy two bonus theories below and try not to think about the fact that I’m gradually training you like Pavlov’s dog.
(Note: Not reading the entries below will cause you to receive a mild electric shock. You’ll also receive a shock for pointing out that I have Pavlov mixed up with Skinner. Or if you watch Criminal Minds. Seriously, fuck that show. Anyway. Enjoy.)
WARNING: MASSIVE SPOILERS FOR THE SONG OF ICE AND FIRE BOOKS AND GAME OF THRONES
The High Septon in A Feast For Crows is Howland Reed
In A Feast for Crows, Cersei Lannister struggles in her role as Queen Regent. (And by “struggle,” we’re referring to the “fly caught in a web of its own self delusion and mediocrity” sort of struggle, not “trying to play Scrabble while a little drunk” struggle.) One of the sharpest thorns in her side is the recently cast High Septon, essentially the Pope of Westeros minus the awesome hat. He refuses to give her son, the king, his blessing and ultimately has her locked in a tower and marched naked through the streets for lechery. Why is the High Septon so malicious towards Cersei? Possibly because he’s one of Ned Stark’s best friends and a Stark Loyalist who rose to his post largely to mess with her.
Many people believe that the unnamed High Septon is actually Howland Reed, a cranogman and one of Ned’s most important allies during Robert’s Rebellion. (You’ll remember his children, Meera and Jojen, as being Bran’s companions beyond the wall. They and the High Septon wear their brown hair in the same fashion, knotted behind their heads in the style of the cranogmen.) In addition, other than Ned, Reed was the only survivor of the mysterious Tower of Joy incident (see the Jon Snow theory above) and he has been referenced in relation to it so often that he is essentially Chekov’s Gun made flesh at this point. He has to show up to spout exposition at some juncture, and given that we’re five books and four seasons into this mess by now it would make a lot of sense if he were already in play. The High Septon is also noted to have the “muddy eyes” and horny, calloused hands that may be characteristic of a cranogman.
Reed (if it is Reed) almost breaks cover when Cersei laments how dirty Baelor’s Sept, the area where Ned lost his head (Ha! Rhymes.) has become. “(Shit) can be washed away more easily than blood…” he says. “If the plaza was befouled, it was befouled by the execution that was done here.” He quickly regains his composure however, and has Cersei completely under his thumb in a matter of weeks.
This all may seem like wishful thinking, but it is said that cranogmen never fight in open battle, preferring to attack using clever tricks from the shadows. We know that Reed is around-he is a Stark loyalist after all, and he is known to eviscerate enemies using sneaky, unorthodox methods. (Says Catelyn Stark in A Storm of Swords: “my father knew the worth of Howland Reed.”) Becoming High Septon, making the Faith Militant his private army and and effectively discrediting Lannister rule in King’s Landing seems like a good place to start. It would be a little awkward explaining to the Stark kids why this brilliant plan wasn’t set into motion before the whole wedding debacle, but, y’know, you take the good with the bad.
Stannis is a Praying Mantis is Human Form
Considering the fact that Stannis is summed up in the books as the least likeable Baratheon brother, it’s almost bizarre how dedicated a fanbase he’s managed to accrue. Stannis’ most hardcore online acolytes call him “Stannis the Mannis” and believe him to be Westeros’ only true hope for surviving the White Walker assault from beyond The Wall. A smaller fan community has another idea-that Stannis Baratheon is actually a praying mantis disguised as a man, plotting to turn Westeros into his insect kingdom.
This may seem hard to swallow, but even the AV Club has called for fans to pull their heads out of the sand and see Stannis for what he really is.
Stannis claims to be King, but unlike Daenarys, Renly, Tommen and Joffery, he has no King’s Guard. Could that be because the constant surveillance would deprive him of the alone-time that he needs to assume his true Mantis form? We’re told that his daughter has a skin disease called greyscale, but that could be a cover up for genetic defects caused by interspecies breeding. Remember that time Stannis was injured in battle? No, you don’t, and that may be due to his being protected by a powerful insectoid exoskeleton.
The smoking gun? Stannis abstains from having sex with his wife (also a mantis, duh) to avoid being eaten alive. We want the truth Stannis. Did you order the code R’hallor? DID YOU ORDER THE CODE R’HALLOR?