Why did Daenerys burn Kings Landing?

  • Published: 17 May 2019
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Comments • 5 203

  • Alejandro Padilla
    Alejandro Padilla  5 days back

    The whole reason was to prove a point. Everyone was conspiring against her now that they know about Jon, all her friends and allies were betraying her and Cersei made it so she looked like an evil foreign invader to the people of kings landing. She knew she could never rule with love so she chose fear. It was to show people like Cersei that using innocents against her wouldn’t work and to show people like Sansa what happens if you don’t bend the knee. It was her choosing to rule with fear.

    • Nisa B
      Nisa B  1 weeks back

      I think what the ultimate factor in her decision to burn Kings Landing is the fact that she knew she would never be loved in Westeros. I remember in the first book in one of Dany’s chapters Jorah and her as they were traveling to Vaes Dothrak they were having a conversation about how Viserys thinks the people of Westeros are waiting for his return and then they will fly the Targaryen banners and cheer him and the Daenerys asks if this is true and Jorah answers that the people pray for rain, no war, and an endless summer, and that they could give a rat’s ass about who sits on the iron throne. and she knows this to be true. But unfortunately she gives in to this belief that the people are awaiting for a Targaryen restoration and that the people will welcome her with open arms, love, and joy. This is the core of who Danny is I believe. She is someone that wants to be loved and admired and worshiped, she had that Essos when she freed the slaves and they worshiped her and called her Myhsa. She’s expecting this when she gets to Westeros and she is sorely mistaken, she’s an invader and a foreigner to them. She’s disillusioned by this, she expects all the great houses to rally to her cause and when they don’t she threatens with force. The north bends the knee but only because of Jon, Sansa makes it clear that she will never be accepted the way she wants to be. And another thing is that she learned the wrong lessons in Essos, she believes that she’s going to free the people of Westeros from the tyrannical grips of the Lannister’s but the thing is the people are free their not slaves. This throws her. The people don’t care who sits on the iron throne. They just want to avoid war. Which is exactly what Daenerys is bringing. So after she loses everything Viserion, Jorah, Rhaegal, Missandei, and Jon she is done trying to win their love. She even says it in season eight episode five to Jon when he rebukes her that she has no love here and that if she won’t have love she’ll have fear. And that is what she intends to do to Kings Landing all along. If they had thrown down their arms and surrendered and open the gates to Kings Landing praising her with love and worship it would’ve ended differently but they didn’t. It had nothing to do with the Red Keep. She decides to rule by fear which is why she burns down Kings Landing to prove a point to the rest of the continent. But in her disillusioned mind she is freeing them and seals her fate with it.

      • Courtney Michelle
        Courtney Michelle  2 weeks back

        Tbh i liked her a lot more as the mad queen burning people

        • Skynet Paradox
          Skynet Paradox  3 weeks back

          🤷🏾‍♂️Easy. Jon wouldn't fuck her anymore, that was the last straw. She got tired of Jon and Tyrion's Terrible advice and Missandei was murdered in front of her.

          • DutchStylZ
            DutchStylZ  3 weeks back

            she burnt down kings landing cause missandei said "dracarys" as her last words before she died.

            • LaDonna Louise
              LaDonna Louise  4 weeks back

              THIS is brilliant. every bit of it. but if I had to flip it a bit, I would say that there is an opposite to this. at the point when she could do all this she could have said ENOUGH. she could have brought down the Red Keep. she could have made a new beginning with propaganda to say here is where we start again, better. it would have been so difficult but she descended into humanity's anger and rage. and we do this in our relationships, where it would be better to say hey - let's just talk and make it better

              • Fiend
                Fiend  1 months back

                Good question

                • Madi Kytta
                  Madi Kytta  2 months back

                  There are two connotations of mad. Angry and crazy.

                  • Iurieti Vladut
                    Iurieti Vladut  2 months back

                    Also...in that whole scene i was wondering about one thing and one thing only...if she was able to come out that far from the sky into attacking euron's fleet...why didn't she just..idk...go straight for the red keep and destroy it? It is not like anyone would have been able to stop her....i mean...we did see a crumbled red keep in her visions in the House of the Undying...maybe that would have been even more correct and solidify her status...why kill those innocent men, women and children when you can just go for the source of it all...and that was Cersei? Kill the bitch, proclaim yourself as queen and simply rule. She could have rebuilt the red keep in time. I think one death would have been way better than killing hundreds of thousands...but for the sake of the script...even if she did went darth vader on all, she was killed waaay too easy...just because the series were ending...shit writing. Great plot twist...one of the greatest tbh...but shit writing.

                    • Iurieti Vladut
                      Iurieti Vladut  2 months back

                      Why did she do it? Well...basically she just watched all of her closest allies and friends die to the hands of her enemies. She heard about everyone plotting against her to overthrow her. And she snapped. That isn't the problem. The huge problem is that we did not have at least 3 episodes to digest the biggest plot twist of tv series history. She was killed in 30 or 40 minutes of screen time after she went mad. And that is complete rubbish writing. So rushed just because it was the season finale...

                      • Stephanie L
                        Stephanie L  2 months back

                        I love this analysis SO MUCH!! Yes, it's absolutely not right to brush it off as "she just went mad!", as if it was just something totally out of her control that couldn't be helped. And I do have serious issues with the carelessness with which the show approached this turn for her.

                        But I equally have issues with the people arguing that this was just soooo out of the realm of possibility for her character, or that the overall implication was that she was somehow evil for "wanting to end slavery *too much* " (sorry for the call out, Lindsay Ellis, I really do love your work! haha, I just highly disagree with you there.) No, she HAD that entitlement, superiority complex, and fire and blood nature in her all along. People really need to stop boxing Daenerys in as if she was just this bastion of moral goodness and purity, whose only crime was caring toooo much. Her compassion was real, but so were her highly dangerous worst impulses. That's was makes her a good character!! It was not, in itself, "misogyny" for her to give in to those worst impulses upon being pushed to the brink on multiple different levels. That makes her a good, three-dimensional, interesting character, and it's why I DO want it to happen in the books! Like I said, I had major issues with the specific writing of it for the show, and in particular, I get the problems with Tyrion's speech to Jon in the end. But I wish people would focus on those specifics, and not discredit the direction her character went in and of itself. It was not "doing her dirty" to allow her the freedom as a three-dimensional character to lose sight of her good intentions. They only did her dirty in the same way almost EVERY character was done dirty in season 8: by not putting in the time and effort to tell that story for her *well* .

                        • Corinne Fuentes
                          Corinne Fuentes  2 months back

                          *sigh* this helped so much. I have been so angry and hurt with how they ended her and your explanation has eased the hurt a little. I wish the screen time for Jon and Danny had more emotion become I didn’t understand Jon’s love for her. Laying out her ideology and explaining in detail all of this now makes sense. I’m still heart broken but not as much.

                          • Corinne Fuentes
                            Corinne Fuentes  2 months back

                            Stephanie L I couldn’t agree more!

                          • Stephanie L
                            Stephanie L  2 months back

                            I honestly think that the biggest disservice they did in season 8 was to not let Jon even BE his character anymore, with an actual point of view and opinions about things. It didn't just spit in the face of his character individually- it also destroyed everything that could have worked so well (and did, to a degree, in season 7) about the Jon/Dany relationship, and by extension did a disservice to Dany as well.

                            Just imagine a season 8 where Jon, as he would have in any other season, was actually offering meaningful advice and insight for Dany, and remaining supportive while still challenging those impulses that wouldn't serve her well in Westeros. Imagine if they had actually taken the time to explore the identity crisis he very understandably must have been going through, and his reasons for not wanting the throne, and allowed him to actually explain to Dany where he was coming from so that his pulling away wouldn't just be framed as this awkward, "he doesn't seem to be invested in this like she is" situation. Because that's obviously not what they were *intending* to go for, considering in the finale he clearly still cared about her so much that he was in some deep, deep, uncharacteristic denial about what she had just done! Which COULD have worked really well (heck, Kit did a great job with it so it nearly did work just on the basis of the emotion he put into it), if we had seen some freaking decent lead up where he clearly still loved her and had deeply wanted to believe that the good in her would win out, but had just been working through a whole bunch of personal stuff himself at the same time. All of that is in fact very much in line with the Jon we know and love, and would have made the ending properly devastating. But instead, what we got was some sorry excuse for a "character" that just repeated "she's/you're my queen" and "I don't want it" over and over, with literally NO point of view or insight into his own emotions and opinions!

                            It just makes me so mad, not just on Jon's behalf because he was my favorite, but also because it would have made Dany's giving into her worst impulses that much stronger if they hadn't demolished everything engaging about Jon's character in order to get her there! For him to have been actively trying, as much as he could given everything going on at the time, to be there for her, and for that still to have not been enough... could have been such a good, sad story!

                        • Alejandro Padilla
                          Alejandro Padilla  2 months back

                          Great video, absolutely agree 100% I would also like to add that on top of all this, Cersei made it so that once Danny stormed the city everyone would view her as an evil tyrant. Varys was plotting to poison her so imagine what the people of Kings Landing would do to her had she let them live. She would rule but there would be non stop attempts on her life especially now that everyone knows the truth about jon. “The world we need won’t be built by people loyal to the world we have “. Danny knew that regardless of her actions, everyone would still be out there against her. She would rather rule indefinitely with fear than for an uncertain amount of time with mercy. “Alright then... let it be fear”

                          • into.the. woods
                            into.the. woods  3 months back

                            She broke the wheel. The people of kinds landing followed a blind leader. They knew this was coming. Order out of chaos. She saved Westeros.

                            • Random Guy
                              Random Guy  3 months back

                              The thing about Qarth never even happened in the books🤦🏻‍♂️🤦🏻‍♂️🤦🏻‍♂️

                              • patricia brown
                                patricia brown  3 months back


                              • Michael Neill
                                Michael Neill  3 months back

                                The night king should of devastated the 7 kingdoms, forcing daenerys and the rest of the living to flee Westoros with Euron Greyjoys fleet after the white walkers kill him and Jaimie Kills Cercei after she didn't assist in helping them defeat the night king, causing him to take kings landing and turn the innocent citizens into walking zombies. The night king should of conquered kings landing and taken the Iron Throne while Daenerys and John Flee on Drogon and Rhaegal to Mereen and the few living left alive on the Iron fleet following them east where they begin construction on a new wall and unite in preparing for the inevitable return of the new terrorist of the realm: The Night King. I've said it for a while now, this show should of been 10 seasons with at least 10 episodes per season. The night king should of won and daenerys should of returned to Mereen ruling on the other side of the sea. With the remaining starks bending the knee. She also should of re-united with Dario upon her return. He would of offered her the support and love she needed. Her decent into madness could of still been played out somehow even with this plot

                                • Robert Hall
                                  Robert Hall  3 months back

                                  I have experienced loss betrayal greif and anger all at the same time. Didn't burn down a city... Also didn't have a dragon but still wouldn't have done it.

                                  • Robert Hall
                                    Robert Hall  3 months back

                                    Because she was always going to go mad and destroy kings landing. Problem was the writters hit fast forward in season 7 and didn't set it up up well because the were ready to move on to killing starwars.

                                    • Alejandro Padilla
                                      Alejandro Padilla  3 months back

                                      To write it off as saying that she was mad is so insulting to her character. It’s so much more complicated than that

                                      • Lisa Davison
                                        Lisa Davison  3 months back

                                        I'll say it again...I wish you would've been hired to write season 8! 7 & 8, actually! Somehow it makes so much more sense when you tell the story & explain the reasons behind the choices that were made!

                                        • Ruben Avila
                                          Ruben Avila  3 months back

                                          The change in the eyes is exactly why i thought that!

                                          • Ruben Avila
                                            Ruben Avila  3 months back

                                            I kinda thought 3 eyed Raven worged into her and made her do it. After all Brandon could tell the future and maybe seen something about her that was a little to close to the Mad King. After making her slaughter all those innocents he and everyone else knew John wasnt gonna have it. Then they crowned him King!

                                            • Matt Johnson
                                              Matt Johnson  3 months back

                                              The one problem I have with bringing up things that Daenerys said in the earlier seasons, is the great passage of time that occurs from then up to, say the end of season 7. I'm guessing 6-10 years. People grow and mature, and trying to hold her to things she said, in anger, 6-10 years earlier discounts character growth. We have to consider her evolution, her maturation and growth over all that time. Not to mention she's gone from a child to an adult in that time. So I'm looking more for recent incidents... and honestly between season 6 and 7, Daenerys is relatively calm and collected.

                                              The other huge problem I have with her "flip" at the end was that it ended up more like a character that had become corrupted - she achieved her goal, then expanded it, after having abandoned her principles (not harming innocents). The problem was that she did not go through an arc of corruption. She was traumatized.

                                              Reaction to trauma could definitely be severe, but it will almost always be directed at the source of that trauma - in this case, primarily, her enemies. In this battle, she's already done a huge amount of destruction, and the only clear enemy on that battlefield left would be Cersei, in the Red Keep. Thus, in the context of everything that happened up to that point, it's more believable that she would attack the Red Keep directly, not burn the whole city.

                                              But if she did what made sense there, D&D couldn't have written her "conqueror" speech, and had Jon kill her in the end.

                                              It just didn't work as a believable story to me.

                                              • C Smith
                                                C Smith  3 months back

                                                Oh, but it's NOT a recent matter--the exact opposite, in fact--as in actual fact, History 101: Europe and the Ancient World. Rome's great writer Cato the Elder (that last bit added posthumously when his young namesake was hanging with Caesar) spent years fighting Carthage in the fierce Punic Wars, years adding "Carthage must be destroyed" to the end of speeches--long after Rome had beaten them in round 2, and eventually visited the city of Carthage. He reached the walls, and he could not believe what he saw. These people were happy, laughing, wallowing in their own wealth and pleasures. (When you think Cato the Elder, think Marines, not Air Force or Navy.) He went back to Rome, and he was determined to make the case for an end, once and for all. Other people who didn't share his fastidiousness of character were willing to do it to take what was "rightfully theirs" and make sure that it was clear Rome was the top boy now. They Carthaginians surrendered--again, but as long as they were still there, people could consider them #1. So, they sacked that city and put it to the torch--children and all. They did it so well, scorch marks were permanently etched into the stones are still there in the ruins--even outdoor stones, sitting open to elements. It took us firebombing cities in Europe and developing nuclear weapons to drop in Japan in WWII to manage that in modern military history. Yet if you're not a historian, you have no way of knowing that, because they got that GRRM was going to take that for Daenerys to firebomb King's Landing, become a tyrant, and leave open the path for Bran the Broken/Owen Tudor, who became Henry VII, the Winter King, who then instituted austerity measures that would have made Maggie Thatcher mist her undies--and form what we now recognize as a police state, which is what forced William Shakespeare into acting, but that's a different story...

                                            • owen tomlinson
                                              owen tomlinson  3 months back

                                              She's a psycho

                                              • Rhonda Tschida
                                                Rhonda Tschida  3 months back

                                                I always thought that Dany could turn out to be very ruthless, but the way it was written made me think that the real reason she went mad queen had nothing to do with what she had gone through, but about the man she loved rejecting her after he found out she was his aunt. The hell has no fury like a woman scorned thing is sexist in the worst way.

                                                • Dafydd Thomas
                                                  Dafydd Thomas  3 months back

                                                  Dany murders millions of people. Dany is Targaryen Heir.

                                                  • curiosityuniversal
                                                    curiosityuniversal  3 months back

                                                    Its war. People die.
                                                    Fuck king's landing.

                                                    • Ellen Calabrese
                                                      Ellen Calabrese  3 months back

                                                      I love your narrating voice, its perfect.

                                                      • Ellen Calabrese
                                                        Ellen Calabrese  3 months back

                                                        She misses Misandae and Jorah plus her dragons and then John not returning her love I BELEIVE pushed her over the edge.

                                                        • JuICyBLiinGeR
                                                          JuICyBLiinGeR  4 months back

                                                          I always felt like her reaction was sparked by Missande. She was the most innocent. Shown no mercy. For what? Cersei to assert power or fear so she will back down. And like her innocence, the city was shown no mercy. Poetic.

                                                          • Laura F
                                                            Laura F  4 months back

                                                            Because of bad writing

                                                            • Lorraine Roberts
                                                              Lorraine Roberts  4 months back

                                                              If they wanted any resource character to do what she did they should have at least had a couple of episodes to lead up to it and explain why instead of doing what they did not one episode where she saves the north and then goes to King's Landing landing and butcher everybody and rhaegar her dragon And Mallasandra her close friend getting her head chopped off doesn't justify what she did she lost viseris saving John and the rest of them over the wall she also lost Jura moment who was a loyal friend from the beginning doesn't justify it for someone who's drive so hard not to be a child killer they need to have at least a couple of episodes for to make that character go that way and they didn't because there's no explanation why her character went from saving children from slavers Bay to saving the north and only killing bad people not killing innocent every man woman and child in Kings Landing it doesn't justify it it was complete character assassination without an explanation why this is something that Cersei would do evil or Ramsay or Jeffrey but not Daenerys not unless explained why with more episodes explaining why and leading up to it

                                                              • SadBoy
                                                                SadBoy  3 months back

                                                                There should have been an entire season slowly showing her progression (more executions, caring less and less about the innocents). This person just nip-picked certain scenes while not considering how the other characters in the show did ruthless actions and yet they are praised as heroes while everything Dany did is suddenly "foreshadowing".
                                                                It's baffling how many people in comment sections are all like "omg it was hinted all along!" when by that logic Arya and Sansa would be killing everyone as well.

                                                            • Lorraine Roberts
                                                              Lorraine Roberts  4 months back

                                                              Gosh you can't even explain why the writers did this to Danny to say because she said she would burn cities to the ground doesn't justify Danny burnt a city to the ground it's a figure of speech to be honest you can't explain why dumber and dumber did this to Danny's character decide because she had threatened to burn cities to the ground is not a reason why this was done have you ever said in your life that you wanted to kill someone who made you angry Then you go and kill that person a figure of speech because you wouldn't really kill somebody right right it's not in Danny character to burn City to the ground murder innocent women and children in cold-blooded murder women and children deliberately especially when the town surrendered then talk with John without even batting an eyelid what she did that's a cold blooded human being she was not like that leading up to that are you forget the episode before she lost one dragon viseris and lost Harper army and her most loyal Commander jorah mormont fighting the army the dead to save the North Yeah fighting The army of The dead and saving the North proof there was no reason or objective was to go to the red keep and kill Cersei Lannister which she could have and should have done Just because she would say I would burn cities to the ground I doesn't mean she would do it give me a break she's always often said no she doesn't want be the queen of ass because when she had the ability to go to King's Landing with a large Army. A Three dragons is no she only kills people who are her enemies know she would not want to be like her father that's what she also said to and she was always reminded of her father I've what her father did burn the city to the ground you can't explain what these to hack writers did to one of the best characters on TV so don't even try if you can't you can't read in their heads as why to destroy such a great show and such a great character and make her a savior of saving kids from slavery to a cold blooded psychopathic murderer of kids

                                                              • the black douglas
                                                                the black douglas  4 months back

                                                                i just hope in the books we get jonerys babies

                                                                • Ezekbarboza
                                                                  Ezekbarboza  4 months back

                                                                  Amazing analysis, and an extra applause for exposing the misogynists approaches and flat out reject them with good arguments.
                                                                  Thank you, as always!

                                                                  • OhManHolyShit JK
                                                                    OhManHolyShit JK  4 months back

                                                                    I still refuse to call her the mad queen. She was angry and craved revenge. That’s not madness

                                                                    • Van A. Johnson
                                                                      Van A. Johnson  4 months back

                                                                      No Robert, D,D, & Cogman were just bad at continuity or story writing.Yet you did an excellent job on this show going to pieces by 2 individuals who couldn't wait to leave to destroy the Star Wars franchise..!

                                                                      • Sarah Howe
                                                                        Sarah Howe  4 months back

                                                                        The question isn't why she did it. The question is: Why did we watch it?

                                                                        • Hassaan Lightstone
                                                                          Hassaan Lightstone  4 months back

                                                                          Because she is "Mad Queen".
                                                                          "Burn them all!"

                                                                          • Vellichor
                                                                            Vellichor  4 months back

                                                                            "To say she is evil is also not right."

                                                                            ... ... yes, it is. Be dispassionate about the subject; forget that this is a character that you, or anyone was rooting for and consider it reasonably. She's always been cruel to her enemies, certainly, and it should be noted (and has been touched upon by you yourself) that she has threatened to essentially nuke cities in the past. "They can live in my new world," she's said. "Or they can die in their old one." Hell, she fed two nobles to her dragons in the Meereenese catacombs, and she had no idea if they were guilty or innocent of anything. And regardless of her being "human, with good and evil, like us all," she literally cooked 500,000+ people in King's Landing, giving most of them final moments of extreme fear and sorrow for their loved ones.

                                                                            As noted by the commentary on the Nerd Soup podcast covering the final episodes, Daenerys is unquestionably evil; to say that she isn't is... ... weird. And absurd.

                                                                            • R Pigeon FabNayNay
                                                                              R Pigeon FabNayNay  4 months back

                                                                              I disagree about none of the characters being all good or all bad. Princess Shireen was all that is good. Ramsey was all that is evil!

                                                                              • I am no one neither R you

                                                                                This is what I thought when everyone said what she did was out of character the woman watched her brother get hot molten gold over his head without blinking granted her child was threatened the point is if you anger her you pay dearly

                                                                                • SadBoy
                                                                                  SadBoy  3 months back

                                                                                  Wait what? Do you even remember why that scene even happened in the first place?
                                                                                  Her brother sexually abused her and mentally tormented her for all her life. He told her he was going to let the entire tribe rape her and then their horses to take turn in raping her. Despite all that abuse, Dany did her best to make her brother happy. She tried to give him gifts, place him in a place of honor (which he didn't deserve), and even said that she was willing to sell the dragon eggs if that means he will get what he wanted. She gave him all.
                                                                                  Then he pulled out a sword in a sacred city where weapons are absolutely forbidden. He then threatened to cut her stomach open and rip out her unborn baby in front of her husband and the royal tribe who follows him. Dany still tried to appease him but he didn't listen.
                                                                                  He was begging to be killed at this point and Dany's final reaction is much more of a resignation.
                                                                                  Dany not showing emotion while watching her brother die as a foreshadow came straight out the show writers' mouth as they try to defend their Mad Queen arc and everyone called it as one of the biggest bullshit said by them and that the writers are insulting the intelligence of the viewers.

                                                                              • MarvelGuy
                                                                                MarvelGuy  4 months back

                                                                                This may be a viable explanation but it was not showed effectively in the show. They made it look like she had absolutely no reason to destroy kings landing. There should have been a bigger motivation for her to do it that happened directly before she did it, such as Jon being killed or drogon being injured.

                                                                                • Michael Schroeder
                                                                                  Michael Schroeder  4 months back

                                                                                  It's scary how you "justify" mass murder of people in a story however fictional, who have little or no connection to the story as a whole. Mass murder cannot be justified whether in real life or fiction. If it can be; then what were the war crimes trials of the NAZIs at the end of WWII all about. Certainly not revenge; one doesn't need a trial for that. This video's attempt to justify the destruction of a whole city, conjures the images from our real world. The refrain from the Vietnam war " we had to destroy the village, in order to save it"; that was just pure madness. A real madness that occurred in my lifetime! If this story highlights anything; its we must be careful to avoid granting absolute power to anyone., and those who believe that absolute power is their birth right are likely the least capable of exercising that kind of power to anyone's good; including their own.

                                                                                  • MzChrissy white-wilson
                                                                                    MzChrissy white-wilson  4 months back

                                                                                    Your explanation was great! I think if the writers had found a way to incorporate your explanation people wouldnt have been as mad because THIS makes sense as to why she burned. Shes not evil or just crazy she had enough of the pain and heartache and took matters into her own hands. Like any real human except she had a dragon to help her. Ive gone mad before to. And each time it was because i felt i had lost everything. It can really fuck you up mentally to be hurt all the time by people who get away with it. And thats partly what happened to dany.

                                                                                    • Black Kitty
                                                                                      Black Kitty  4 months back

                                                                                      That still doesn't explain her speech after "winning" the battle, her plans to "liberate" the world. It looks to me that she has always planned this without telling her advisors, she never explained to anyone what she means by breaking the wheel, or what building a better world means to her, everybody just assumed something peaceful and just. She looked so clearly convinced when she talked to Jon in the throne room, she was happy and proud of her achievement, it is like if she achieved something she always had planned. This behaviour doesn't match with somebody who did something in a moment of anger and grief, it looks like a well though of plan.

                                                                                      • Nizzelface Bastard
                                                                                        Nizzelface Bastard  4 months back

                                                                                        Very well presented video. Great points.