For the most part, Game of Thrones is an endurance test for how many miserable, heartbreaking, and stomach-churning events you can withstand in one sitting. There have been a few bright spots over the last seven seasons, though, and Ser Davos Seaworth’s tender friendship with young Shireen Baratheon is at the top of the list. As it happens, one of their tutoring sessions happens to contain a subtle Easter egg concerning the big reveal about Jon Snow’s true name in the season seven finale.
As you might recall, before showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss decided to rip out our hearts with Shireen’s fate, there’s a scene from a few seasons back where she’s trying to teach the illiterate Davos how to read and write. Reddit user Efurthy realized that Shireen’s choice for the first word to teach her new student (and Jon Snow’s future BFF) could not be more coincidental:
That’s right — Aegon, Jon Snow’s birth name.
After spending years speculating about who Jon’s real parents actually are, Bran calls upon his powers as the Three-Eyed Raven in the dramatic season seven conclusion to go back in time and confirm that they are indeed Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark. The blond Targaryen prince has not, as many throughout Westeros assumed, abducted and raped Lyanna. Instead we find out that the couple are truly in love. In season six, we get a glimpse of Lyanna begging her brother, Ned Stark, to «promise» to protect her child after giving birth, and further visions from Bran reveal that Lyanna also whispers something else to Ned before she dies: «His name is Aegon Targaryen.»
HuffPost reached out to actor Liam Cunningham, who plays Davos, to find out if he was aware of the connection at the time. His response? «No, are you kidding me? I don’t know what the hell’s gonna happen from one episode to the next,» he said. «That’s testament to how good the writing is on that, too. After seven seasons, people are still asking the same question they asked in season one. ‘Who do you think is gonna end up on the throne?'»
Cunningham did note, however, that the Aegon reference was probably intentional. «Yeah, they’re very good at that sort of thing,» he said. «David [Benioff] and Dan [Weiss] plant little Easter eggs there if you want to see them.»