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Game of Thrones Hope Chest: what romantic pairing are you rooting for?

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Yes, the dragons getting together to make a flock of dragon-babies totally counts

HBO

Game of Thrones has never been about giving readers or viewers what they most want. Its author and screenwriters prefer to build fan expectations, then overturn them for narrative impact — and sometimes for pure shock value. And yet we fans maintain hope that at least a few of the characters will reach a satisfying, well-deserved ending. That’s why there’s Game of Thrones Hope Chest, a new weekly poll where we put all our hopes together in one place. We aren’t asking what you think is going to happen on Game of Thrones, we’re asking: what do you most hope to see happen?

This week, we’re looking back at an episode filled with boat murder, alliance-building, secret messages, and callbacks to season one — and ignoring all of it in order to focus on the romantic sequence between Grey Worm and Missandei. It was an extremely rare case where Game of Thrones depicted sex as a consensual, pleasurable connection between people who actually like each other, as opposed to something transactional, violent, or both. (It was also a ridiculously rare case where the show’s non-white cast got a little screen time that wasn’t about violence or servitude. They didn’t even get interrupted by boat murder!)

So of course the cynics are sure the only reason they finally got together is to set up the big knife-twist when Grey Worm dies, possibly immediately, because this is Game of Thrones and we can’t have nice things, at least not for more than five minutes at a time. But human nature being what it is (which is to say, pretty close to animal nature), Game of Thrones fans have been theorizing about and rooting for specific romantic pairings between characters literally since the first book came out.

For instance, a very early but common fan theory was that an eventual romance between Jon Snow and Daenerys would be the real “ice and fire” of the series title, given their respective backgrounds, homelands, and affiliations. While Brienne of Tarth has never been a romantic, fans have been hoping to see her end up with one of the gruff warriors who’ve earned her respect. There was apparently a sizable subgroup of fans pulling for Sansa and Margaery to get together, after bonding over Joffrey’s awfulness, though season six of the show quashed that hope. Granted, half the cast may end up dead before it’s all over, and any relationship comforts are likely to be pretty fleeting. But still, Grey Worm and Missandei’s moment together should give anyone hope that Game of Thrones isn’t entirely devoid of tenderness.

Poll

Who would be the most satisfying couple to see get together on Game of Thrones?

This poll is closed

  • 2%
    Ellaria Sand and Yara Greyjoy (if either survives the next episode)
    (109 votes)
  • 5%
    Daenerys and Jorah (you know Jorah would vote for this one)
    (262 votes)
  • 34%
    Daenerys and Jon (brings a new meaning to "bend the knee")
    (1735 votes)
  • 20%
    Brienne and Tormund (those are gonna be some homely, beardy babies)
    (1020 votes)
  • 11%
    Brienne and Jamie (the bear is not invited)
    (555 votes)
  • 1%
    Cersei and Euron (she’s been adopting his Hot Topic look since the season six finale)
    (75 votes)
  • 5%
    Sansa and literally anyone but Littlefinger (c’mon, he only wants her ‘cause her mom’s dead)
    (270 votes)
  • 7%
    Tyrion and literally anyone at all (if anyone deserves a happy domestic ending, it’s probably him)
    (376 votes)
  • 3%
    Drogon and Rhaegal (bring on the army of baby dragons!)
    (196 votes)
  • 5%
    I don’t care about romance on the show, I’m only in it for the murder (or the dragons or whatever)
    (283 votes)
  • 2%
    Other (fess up about your favorite pairing in the comments)
    (122 votes)
5003 votes total Vote Now

And here’s a bonus poll:

Poll

Did the writers only let Grey Worm and Missandei get together so one of them can die tragically?

This poll is closed

  • 51%
    Yeah, he’s doomed
    (1743 votes)
  • 6%
    Yeah, she’s doomed
    (210 votes)
  • 27%
    Yeah, they’re both doomed
    (917 votes)
  • 14%
    No, they’ll make it through this together and dance on everyone else’s corpses
    (503 votes)
3373 votes total Vote Now