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Feature Article

Game Of Thrones Episode 4: What Happened To Jon Snow's Dragon, Rhaegal? (Season 8)

Dragon spoilers within!

Episode 3 of Game of Thrones's final season has come and gone, so have a whole bunch of characters who faced off against the Night King in the Battle of Winterfell. And in Episode 4, Daenerys's battle against Cersei for control of the Seven Kingdoms kicked off again in earnest. You might be wondering what Melisandre said to Arya back in Season 3 and what happened to Jon's direwolf, Ghost.

Another big question was the fate of Rhaegal, Jon Snow's dragon, after he disappeared during the battle with the Night King. Episode 4 revealed the dragon's fate--he survived the battle, but it took a lot out of him. Rhaegal was in bad shape at the start of Episode 4, thanks to the his fight with the Night King and his undead dragon, Viserion. Jon and the Night King tangled in mid-air, with Viserion and Rhaegal attacking each other. Both dragons were injured in the fighting: Zombie Viserion lost half his face, and Rhaegal received a huge gash to his chest. The injury caused Jon and his dragon to fall back to earth, where Jon was thrown off Rhaegal's back. After that, Rhaegal wasn't seen again.

Rhaegal weakened state in Episode 4 could be read as a contributing factor to what happened next. Upon returning to Dragonstone, Daenerys was ambushed by Euron Greyjoy and a few ships of his Iron Fleet. The ships had been outfitted with scorpions, Qyburn's giant, dragon-slaying crossbows. And slay they did: A bunch of huge crossbow bolts slammed into Rhaegal, hitting him in the chest, the wing, and finally, the throat. It seemed like in his weakened, wobbly state, Rhaegal had almost no chance to try to avoid the attack or even see it coming. In the end, he went careening into the ocean, disappearing beneath the waves.

So is Rhaegal really dead? He sure seemed to be, given the crossbow bolt that went clear through his neck. There's always the possibility of a weird misdirect since we didn't actually see Rhaegal die, but that seems very unlikely. There could potentially be more dragons in Westeros, but that also seems like a pretty big longshot.

With only one dragon left and Cersei's forces fully outfitted with scorpions, Daenerys has been seriously weakened. She's clearly afraid to lose Drogon at this point, and with her other forces severely reduced, it's looking more and more like Cersei is gaining the upper hand in the war for the Iron Throne. It looks like the other wild cards in play might ultimately be the deciding factor in the war, such as Jaime Lannister returning to King's Landing, the Hound heading back to kick off Cleganebowl, and the MVP of the Battle of Winterfell, Arya Sark.

If you're all caught up on Game of Thrones, be sure to check out our Episode 3 Easter eggs and references--there were quite a few, and given the issues some people had with the level of darkness and visibility in Episode 3, you might have missed something. You might also be interested in a full rundown of everyone who didn't make it through the battle or Episode 4, and our take on whether The Long Night succeeded in its aims of resolving the conflict with the Night King.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

philhornshaw

Phil Hornshaw

GameSpot editor in Los Angeles, and the co-author of So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler’s Guide to Time Travel and The Space Hero’s Guide to Glory. Hoped the latter would help me get Han Solo hair, but so far, unsuccessful.
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