Jon’s beloved direwolf has been with him since the very first episode. Ghost traveled to the Wall with Jon, protected both he and Samwell time and again, and even kept vigil over Jon’s body long after all life had left it. He fought in the Battle of Castle Black and the Battle of Winterfell. He’s been a loyal companion to Jon for eight long seasons.
Sam got a hug. Tormund got a hug. Even Gilly got a hug. But not poor, loyal Ghost.
— Adriana (@augureyl) May 6, 2019
*even hugs Gilly who he doesn’t know very well*
— Fardeen (@Fardeen_02) May 6, 2019
— Jennifer Matthew (@JennyMatthew_) May 6, 2019
After asking Tormund to take him north of the Wall, Jon gave Ghost a solemn, mournful look and walked away. Devastated fans couldn’t help but ask why he didn’t even approach his longtime companion before sending him away forever.
Thankfully, the episode’s director has some answers. David Nutter spoke to the Huffington Post this week about the decision to keep the scene brief and clean. “Since the direwolves are kind of CG creations, we felt it best to keep it as simple as possible,” he said. In another recent interview, this time with the New York Times, he also conceded that CGI restrictions were “very much” the reason we didn’t see a more intimate goodbye.
Though fans are still disappointed by the lack of a heartfelt moment between two longtime companions, the explanation makes sense. It turns out that digitally creating a realistic wolf twice the size of a normal man is costly. A 2017 Business Insider interview with the director of the Battle of the Bastards revealed that Ghost was intended to make an appearance in Jon’s final showdown with Ramsay.
“It’s also an incredibly time consuming and expensive character to bring to life,” director Miguel Sapochnik told Business Insider. “Ultimately, we had to choose between Wun-Wun and the direwolf, so the dog bit the dust.”
Ghost is one of two remaining Stark direwolves. He and Nymeria have both been freed by their former masters to live in the wild as they were intended to. Fans were disappointed to find out that the last two episodes will lack any contributions from the Starks’ loyal furbabies, but at least we know Ghost is roaming free.
- ‘Game of Thrones’ looks at the aftermath of one war as it dives into another
- HBO digitally removes Starbucks cup from latest ‘Game of Thrones’
- What did Daenerys whisper in Ser Jorah’s ear?
Need more news from beyond the Wall? Sign up hereto receive our weekly Game of Thrones newsletter from in-house expert Michelle Jaworski.
NOW HEAR THIS:
How linguist David J. Peterson created the Dothraki and Valyrian languages for Game of Thrones
Introducing 2 GIRLS 1 PODCAST, a weekly comedy show where Alli Goldberg and Jen Jamula (two actors who perform bizarre internet content on stage) have hilarious and humanizing conversations with Bronies, top Reddit mods, professional ticklers, video game archaeologists, dating app engineers, adult babies, cuddling specialists, vampires, Jedi, living dolls, and more.
Subscribe to 2 GIRLS 1 PODCAST in your favorite podcast app.