Hey! I'm wondering wrt the Valonquar theory. It gets discussed a lot and the majority practically takes it that Cersei's Valonquar is gonna be Jaime. I'm wondering if you think it's possible that ultimately, in a massive fit of dramatic irony, it could still be Tyrion? We've all practically taken it to be Jaime based on Cersei's pov and her blind trust in Jaime (that falls apart around AFFC). Prophecies are changeable after all, right? So it could've gone from Jaime to Tyrion at one point?
Hi! I hope you don’t think me presumptuous or rude for saying this, but whenever I hear theories like, “Cersei thinks it’s Tyrion, but the fandom thinks the valonqar is Jaime, so what if it really is Tyrion?!” I feel like it’s a case of Fandom Overexposure.
It’s like … “OMG Oedipus is really gonna sleep with his MOM … but … but … EVERYONE says Oedipus is gonna sleep with his mom, Freud even named a complex after it … so where’s the irony in that? …maybe Jocasta really isn’t Oedipus’s mom?!” That’s not how dramatic irony works.
Here’s the definition of dramatic irony:
Dramatic irony occurs in a piece of literature when the audience knows something that some characters in the narrative do not. The spectator of a play, or reader of a novel or poem, thus has information that at least some of the characters are unaware of, which affects the way the audience member reacts to the plot. For example, the reader might be aware that a certain trap has been set and feels suspense when an unknowing character is about to walk right into this trap. The tension of the piece therefore depends on the contrast between what the audience and characters know. […] There is a special form of dramatic irony called tragic irony in which the audience knows the character is making a mistake as the character is doing something. [x]
We know that Jaime is the valonqar, but Cersei doesn’t. That’s The Point. It’s like GRRM is winking at his readers, because we’re in on the secret, even though the characters are not.
Her own ableist prejudices make Cersei assume Tyrion is guilty, and it couldn’t possibly be anyone else, in her mind; she’s wrong. That’s the irony. It’s not the readers who have a disconnect between expectation and reality, it’s Cersei.
And what makes this tragic are the mistakes Cersei is making. One mistake is Cersei’s ableism, but the other … she takes Jaime’s loyalty for granted. (Do you know how many of those endless HP sortings go on and on about Jaime and loyalty?) Cersei thinks she can “never […] trust anyone but Jaime”. That’s why she’ll never see the valonqar coming until his hands are around her throat and it’s too late. Her brother, her lover … and her killer. It’s very sad.
And the tension here comes from being inside Jaime’s head and seeing him brought to a boil. Right now Jaime’s only (“only”) fantasizing about ripping out Cersei’s tongue and smashing her teeth in. What is Cersei going to do in TWOW that’s going to make her relationship with Jaime even worse? What will Cersei do to Jaime, thinking there will be no retaliation? What if Cersei dismissed Jaime from the Kingsguard? What is the final straw, the thing that finally makes Jaime boil over?
It’s like the train roaring down the tracks toward the collapsed railroad bridge, and the camera keeps cutting between shots of the two. I’m on the edge of my seat waiting for the train wreck. SOON