'Game of Thrones': How Cersei Lannister Might Set Season 6 on Fire

Game Of Thrones S06 E08 Still 2 H 2016
Courtesy of HBO

[Warning: This story contains spoilers through episode eight, season six of HBO's Game of Thrones.]

Cold winds are rising in the north. Dragon fire simmers in the east. But don't ignore the heat of the south.

Two great battles are brewing in the Jon Snow (Kit Harington) and Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) story lines of Game of Thrones' sixth season, but a third fire burns beneath the surface of King's Landing — potentially quite literally, according to theories about Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey) and her plans for the city.

In "No One," the most recent hour of the series, the disenfranchised Queen Regent of Westeros learned she would not be able to battle back against the High Sparrow (Jonathan Pryce) and his Faith Militant through Trial by Combat, as the violent practice has been outlawed. So much for "Robert Strong," the alias of the zombified Mountain (Hafthor Bjornsson), bailing her out of trouble. The news, delivered by her own son King Tommen (Dean-Charles Chapman) during a meeting she wasn't even invited to, was so devastating that you could practically see the smoke coming out of Cersei's ears … and where there's smoke, there's wildfire.

At the end of the scene, Cersei exchanges a word with Maester Qyburn (Anton Lesser), one of her last few remaining allies. He confirms that there's truth behind the rumors she wanted him to investigate, and while the details of those rumors remain murky, many fans believe Qyburn speaks of untapped wildfire reserves, as commissioned by the late Mad King Aerys. Viewers last saw Westeros' answer to napalm as it ravaged Stannis Baratheon's fleet back in "Blackwater," lighting up the titular Blackwater Bay in an impressive display of fluorescent green fire — at least, that's the last sighting of the stuff in a modern day context.

But consider Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright) and his visions at the start of "Blood of My Blood," the sixth episode of the season. In the sequence, Bran sees wildfire gushing throughout a King's Landing corridor, presumably the visual manifestation of Aerys Targaryen's wildest desires. IGN puts forth another possibility, suggesting the wildfire was not a thing of the past, but a sign of the future — a future fueled by none other than Cersei herself.

Throughout the series, viewers are often reminded of the extreme lengths Cersei will go in order to protect her family. Even in the latest episode, Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) tells Edmure (Tobias Menzies) that Cersei would burn a city to the ground in order to save her children. Perhaps this fiery metaphor is more than just a metaphor, but a prediction of the future — the foreshadowing of the Mad Queen's rise as she attempts to liberate her son and her family's power away from the High Sparrow's clutches.

Consider also Maggy the Frog's prophecy, that Cersei will outlive all three of her children. Two are dead. One remains. Wildfire, as the name implies, is not easily controlled. Could Cersei's gambit to save her last surviving son lead directly to his death, alongside the deaths of several others in King's Landing? It's said that the Lannisters always pay their debts; perhaps the great cosmic cost owed by Game of Thrones' golden family is about to be paid in flames.

Watch the video for more on Cersei's fiery plans:

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