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Though the manner in which the show brought this devastating character turn to life has many issues, it wasn't altogether a shock. George R. Martin, who wrote the novels "Game of Thrones" is based on, has written one of the most brilliant fantasy characters of all time in Daenerys Targaryen, layering in a message about the inherent immorality and violence of warfare no matter how "good" a ruler's intentions are. We were always meant to be wary of Daenerys Targaryen's ascent to power. But the magic trick Martin, and by proxy "Game of Thrones," pulled off was crafting an empathetic heroine we were rooting for — even as cheering for her success meant cheering for the death of thousands.


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Many fans have rightfully taken issue with the show's fast-paced portrayal of the Dragon Queen's choice. But almost everyone agrees that this troubling turn will happen in George R. Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" novels, even if the circumstances around the narrative are different. Weiss the broad strokes of his planned ending. In the week following "The Bells," the penultimate episode of the series in which Daenerys attacks King's Landing, discussion cropped up about how this dark turn was foreshadowed or hinted at from the very first season of "Game of Thrones.

These moments we can point to are usually examples of Daenerys carrying out an act of violence which she considers to be justice. In the "Inside the Episode" segment for "The Bells," Benioff uses Daenerys' emotionless reaction to her brother's death as an example of her problematic mindset. Daenerys watching her brother die on season one of "Game of Thrones.

But Viserys is a poor example to single out. Viserys physically and emotionally abused Daenerys for her whole life up until the moment he died. The way she responded to his death was reasonable. It's the way she responded to the actions of violence on the very next episode that was the real first sign of trouble.

The first real case of Daenerys showing a "chilling" response to violence happens not with Viserys, but when a wine seller attempts to poison her. Attempted murder of a pregnant woman is a horrific crime. But is tying that man naked to your horse and making him walk until he collapses and is dragged to death a reasonable punishment? That goes beyond justice. It's a specific brand of vengeful violence. Read more: Every major moment on 'Game of Thrones' that foreshadowed Daenerys Targaryen's deadly character twist. Daenerys watching as her dragons killed and ate a man.

Daenerys has a warped sense of justice, shown moreso by the pride she displays when Drogo makes his big speech about how he's going to lay waste to Westeros in order to give Dany her throne. Yes, once Daenerys sees Drogo's plan in action, she has a change of heart and tries to rescue the women and children falling victim to this war. From then on, most of her violent actions are exacted against people who have wronged her first.

But she never seems to feel conflicted or weighted down by the thought of killing these people. As INSIDER's Megan Willett wrote during the sixth season of the show , "when he's forced to take a life, Jon makes sure he's the one to swing the sword, and he views it as a burden, not a pleasure. Jon Snow was upset when he hanged the four people who helped murder him. Even when they first talk outside of the halls of Dragonstone, Daenerys mentions how people enjoy what they're good at.

Just like his father, Rhaegar Targaryen. What Daenerys does, and how she feels about it, is no worse than what every other leader in Westeros has done. From King Robert to Tywin Lannister and Robb Stark and Walder Frey, we are shown again and again how the choices of men in power lead to brutal deaths and wreaked havoc on the country. But unlike those leaders, Daenerys is introduced in a much more sympathetic way. We are first shown the abuse inflicted upon her by Viserys, and how she's sold into a marriage and sexually assaulted. We were caught up in her righteous quest to end slavery and protect the innocent, and the entire fantasy realm of "Game of Thrones.

It led people to believe that her particular acts of war or violence were being done for "better" reasons than most of the other characters.

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Her fight for the Iron Throne, and declarations that she will take what is hers with fire and blood, previously came across not as "chilling" but as thrilling. Daenerys was often positioned as a heroine on "Game of Thrones. But what if Martin's whole point is that there's virtually no way for war to be justified? What if the backwards way Martin wrote Daenerys as a sympathetic heroine was always meant to lead us down a conflicted path of feeling uneasy with the way in which she was achieving her goals?

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Read more: Emilia Clarke tried to warn fans last year about Daenerys' final season arc on 'Game of Thrones'. Martin has spoken often about how he was given the status of "conscientious objector" during the Vietnam War, therefore excluding him from the draft. He's said that he's not a "complete pacifist," citing World War II as a fight he would've participated in.

But Martin does discuss how the reasoning behind waging a war is something people struggle with often, and is a debate he wants to spark with his readers.

iced a tale of one mans chilling downfall Manual

Emilia Clarke and George R. Martin together at an event. He went on to discuss how modern warfare with drones and missile strikes has removed the personal nature of murder from the equation, and how people's removal from the up-close horrors of war is not necessarily a good thing. In a interview with Strombo, Martin expanded on the reason why his "A Song of Ice and Fire" novels are so full of brutal violence.

MAN

They're discussing "broken men" soldiers who have defected or deserted their armies and what follows is one of the best commentaries on war given in all of Martin's writing. In a monologue, Septon Meribald describes the fathers and sons and brothers who were sent away from their homes to fight brutal battles on behalf of their lords. He describes the ways glorification of war through song and speeches leaves new soldiers unprepared for the reality of death and starvation and having to steal shoes from a corpse just to march another day. People like Brienne should be wary of broken men, he explains, but she should also pity them.

They're not criminals for the hell of it, but traumatized souls reduced to their most base instincts of survival. Short-distance services are also canceled on Thursday, Amtrak said. The Chicago Transit Authority, which shuttles about 1.


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Even the Postal Service took notice, announcing that because of concerns for the safety of its employees, mail won't be delivered Wednesday in parts of at least 10 states. Chicago River freezing: Here's what it looks like in sub-zero temperatures. Homeless shelters and warming centers were abuzz across the region. In Chicago, officials added shelter beds and tapped more than religious leaders to make calls and checks on senior citizens.

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Five Chicago Transit Authority buses were dispatched to give homeless people a place to warm up who might not want to go to a shelter. The weather was headed east. The city Housing Authority activated its Situation Room as heating response teams prepped to respond to heat and hot-water emergencies. Philadelphia enacted "Cold Blue," including hour outreach to find people who are homeless and take them indoors. The weekend could bring relief.

In Des Moines, Iowa, the temperature barreled down to minus on Wednesday with a wind chill of minus