Game of Thrones’ series finale, “The Iron Throne,” didn’t exactly deliver the ending that many fans expected. But there was at least one character who got justice after being treated horribly in an earlier episode: Jon Snow’s beloved direwolf, Ghost.
Ghost became the subject of social media outrage after the final season’s fourth episode, “The Last of the Starks,” saw his owner, Jon Snow, give the animal to Tormund and send him north to Castle Black — all without so much as a goodbye pat on the head.
In an effort to explain why Game of Thrones chose not to show an emotional farewell between Jon and his beloved pet, the episode’s director, David Nutter, said that the goodbye scene played out the way it did because the show’s production team was restricted by the fact that Ghost is, in part, a CGI creation. But this explanation, predictably, only made fans angrier, with many of them responding with numerous examples of all the ways the show could have made Jon petting Ghost work.
For all these fans, the series finale delivered a lovely note of triumph. The final episode saw Jon ironically being exiled back to the (now nonexistent) Night’s Watch in order to satisfy the Unsullied’s demand for punishment after he killed Daenerys. So Jon wound up right back where he started. And who was there to welcome him but his faithful longtime companion?
The moment was exactly as sweet as fans had hoped:
Game of Thrones fans on social media were overjoyed.
I mean, Jon finally petting Ghost was all we really wanted. #GoT— Isabelle Khurshudyan (@ikhurshudyan) May 20, 2019
Some, including Tasha Robinson of Vox sister site The Verge, noted that given how long ago the season finished production, the Game of Thrones production team had surely been eye-rolling all the hoopla over the fourth episode. After all, they would have known Jon and Ghost would be reunited shortly:
David Benioff and D.B. Weiss must have been laughing to themselves so hard when we freaked out a couple weeks ago about Jon Snow not petting Ghost goodbye when leaving the north. There has to have been some "Oh, just wait for it, you whiners" in there somewhere. #GameOfThrones pic.twitter.com/On6O3AatbJ— Tasha Robinson (@TashaRobinson) May 20, 2019
Hilariously, though, others speculated that the scene had been hastily added after the fact, in direct response to the fan outrage.
It’s highly doubtful that the scene was added in response to the uproar, but either way, it made many fans happy. And while many other aspects of “The Iron Throne” left fans scratching their heads, in reuniting Jon with his faithful companion, Game of Thrones reminded us that it did have at least two characters’ interests at heart.