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Why the Night King Didn't Fight Jon

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Like a lot of people, I was kinda bummed that Jon didn't get to fight the Night King and then I thought about the time Jon did fight a White Walker at Hardhome. 

I re-watched the Battle at Hardhome and the Night King is watching when Jon kills the White Walker. The look on the Night Kings face says a lot. I think he realized the Jon had a sword that he couldn't beat so that is why he avoided fighting Jon at Winterfell and raised the dead to stop Jon. The ice weapons that the Night King and his White Walkers use are useless against Valyrian steal.

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Posted (edited)

Valyrian steel and the death of a few White Walkers surprised the Walkers enough for them to start using armor and staying behind their lines instead of engaging the enemy head-on.

But the Night King was the strongest of the White Walkers by far and Jon got his ass beat by one which he only defeated by surprising him with a sort of sword he wasn't expecting.

The Night King was not afraid to get into the dirt as you see when he engaged his ancient enemies: the Children of the Forest. So there's nothing pointing to the fact that he'd be afraid of facing Jon in combat. In fact, it seems more like he couldn't care.

Edited by Winterz

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Nah. The WW are different, weaker, less powerful. It was just dumb no matter how you look at it.

I mean the NK should have broken Aryas neck the instant he got a hold of her. The NK can throw a big ice spear at insane speeds over insane distances, that is telling of how powerful he is. Dragon fire doesn't harm him for whatever dumb reason but steel made out of dragon fire does lol. At that moment, you realize ok if dragon fire doesn't kill him steel forged out of the very thing that doesn't kill him shouldn't either. That was terrifying because now you use logic and assume ok so steel forged by dragon fire shouldn't kill him either, now it adds suspense, mystique and fear then they are like ''PSYCH LOL'' and kill him off in the most dumbest deus ex machina way, and never did I have the feeling the NK was afraid of Jon, if anything, he felt it wasn't even worth his time. 

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25 minutes ago, Gianna Dorenberg said:

Nah. The WW are different, weaker, less powerful. It was just dumb no matter how you look at it.

I mean the NK should have broken Aryas neck the instant he got a hold of her. The NK can throw a big ice spear at insane speeds over insane distances, that is telling of how powerful he is. Dragon fire doesn't harm him for whatever dumb reason but steel made out of dragon fire does lol. At that moment, you realize ok if dragon fire doesn't kill him steel forged out of the very thing that doesn't kill him shouldn't either. That was terrifying because now you use logic and assume ok so steel forged by dragon fire shouldn't kill him either, now it adds suspense, mystique and fear then they are like ''PSYCH LOL'' and kill him off in the most dumbest deus ex machina way, and never did I have the feeling the NK was afraid of Jon, if anything, he felt it wasn't even worth his time. 

Ignoring Dumb&Dumber logic... I'm going to try to explain it, in a way similar to how fanboys try to explain plot holes that were never filled.

The WWs, or at least the Night King have some sort of control over fire. It could be that the Night King can shield himself with ice magic from Drogon's fire as opposed to shielding himself from being pierced by a dragon fire-made blade. It is entirely possible that Drogon could've killed him had he decided to bite him. Dragon teeth should work a lot like dragon fire blades.

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Posted (edited)

But just if we ignore the fact that the Arya, who barely made it through the initial stages of the Faceless Men training, can go through an army of wights and a dozen superhuman White Walkers and then still be able to make the impossible jump to the Night King's arms.

All this after running through a castle full of armed and berserk wights from a besieged room.

Edited by Winterz

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16 hours ago, Dragon Glass said:

Like a lot of people, I was kinda bummed that Jon didn't get to fight the Night King and then I thought about the time Jon did fight a White Walker at Hardhome. 

I re-watched the Battle at Hardhome and the Night King is watching when Jon kills the White Walker. The look on the Night Kings face says a lot. I think he realized the Jon had a sword that he couldn't beat so that is why he avoided fighting Jon at Winterfell and raised the dead to stop Jon. The ice weapons that the Night King and his White Walkers use are useless against Valyrian steal.

Going off that, the Night King shouldn't have gone into Winterfell altogether. Hell, he didn't even need to make an appearance at all. He could've sent his White Walkers and wights to kill Bran, whilst he flies his dragon to kill everyone South of the Neck. 

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Posted (edited)

I'm glad we didn't have to see another Hollywood cliché where Jon fights the Night King. One of the few things that made sense Episode 3 though.. The Night King doesn't care about prestige, 1v1, pride or wasting time against a "normal human". Also, he's aware of the fact that Jon belongs to the small group of humans with a sword that could destroy him. Why should he take the risk? Raising the dead was the right move and a death sentence for Jon. If Dany wouldn't have appeared in the last moment.... However, I remember the Night King kinda smiling when he entered the cave of the Bloodraven. So I do believe he might have some human feelings left. He also smiled when "Dracarys" did nothing. That's the only shred of personality we saw. He showed a facial expression. Furthermore, his goal was always Bran. He doesn't care about Jon Snow or someone else. They are all the same for him. A 1v1 between them would have looked even more forced than the episode already was as a whole. If you view it logically, it goes down pretty quickly. The Night King already took a pretty dumb risk by approaching Bran when the battle was still active. There was no reason for him to show up. He could have "spammed" wights and let his generals actually do something til everyone was dead. Which would have happened sooner or later. If you can wait for thousands of years, you can prolly do that as well. The Night King exposed himself at the end and I still don't get it. Bad story telling. I mentioned that in the rate episode 3 thread and also read it here, he should have crushed Aryas neck without any hesitation. Another topic, but still. Because of that, we don't know 100% of the story arc between the Night King and Bran so maybe he had to show up to finish his job. Who knows? At the end, the Night King was created to fight the humans and he's been around for more than 8k years so I doubt he cares about a 1v1 at all. Just another wight for his army.. I'm still pissed about the ending tho. 

Edited by Orleans

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3 hours ago, Winterz said:

Valyrian steel and the death of a few White Walkers surprised the Walkers enough for them to start using armor and staying behind their lines instead of engaging the enemy head-on.

 

3 hours ago, Winterz said:

But the Night King was the strongest of the White Walkers by far and Jon got his ass beat by one which he only defeated by surprising him with a sort of sword he wasn't expecting.

Yep.  The White Walkers don't appear to unnecessarily risk themselves.  They only mix it up when they expect to win.  This is doubly true of the NK.

 

3 hours ago, Winterz said:

The Night King was not afraid to get into the dirt as you see when he engaged his ancient enemies: the Children of the Forest. So there's nothing pointing to the fact that he'd be afraid of facing Jon in combat. In fact, it seems more like he couldn't care.

True.  The NK wasn't afraid to get into the dirt.  But would only do so if he expected to win.  He did send in some WW redshirts and wights ahead of himself when attacking the CotF, to clear the way.

You are right - he did seem that he couldn't be bothered with fighting Jon.  It reminded me of the other times that single combat to decide a war was suggested (Jamie to Robb, Jon to Ramsey).  Both times the one with the better army turned down the challenge.  The NK did the same here.

 

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1 hour ago, Euron III Greyjoy said:

Going off that, the Night King shouldn't have gone into Winterfell altogether. Hell, he didn't even need to make an appearance at all. He could've sent his White Walkers and wights to kill Bran, whilst he flies his dragon to kill everyone South of the Neck. 

True, but for some reason, he wants to be the one to KO the 3-Eyed Raven.  It seems personal.  He did the same to the previous 3-Eyed Raven - went in with the other WW and personally killed Bloodraven.

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5 minutes ago, Tywin Tytosson said:

True, but for some reason, he wants to be the one to KO the 3-Eyed Raven.  It seems personal.  He did the same to the previous 3-Eyed Raven - went in with the other WW and personally killed Bloodraven.

It might've been one of the previous Three-Eyed Crow's idea to turn him into a White Walker. 

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Posted (edited)
58 minutes ago, Orleans said:

I'm glad we didn't have to see another Hollywood cliché where Jon fights the Night King. One of the few things that made sense Episode 3 though.. The Night King doesn't care about prestige, 1v1, pride or wasting time against a "normal human". Also, he's aware of the fact that Jon belongs to the small group of humans with a sword that could destroy him. Why should he take the risk? Raising the dead was the right move and a death sentence for Jon. If Dany wouldn't have appeared in the last moment.... However, I remember the Night King kinda smiling when he entered the cave of the Bloodraven. So I do believe he might have some human feelings left. He also smiled when "Dracarys" did nothing. That's the only shred of personality we saw. He showed a facial expression. Furthermore, his goal was always Bran. He doesn't care about Jon Snow or someone else. They are all the same for him. A 1v1 between them would have looked even more forced than the episode already was as a whole. If you view it logically, it goes down pretty quickly. The Night King already took a pretty dumb risk by approaching Bran when the battle was still active. There was no reason for him to show up. He could have "spammed" wights and let his generals actually do something til everyone was dead. Which would have happened sooner or later. If you can wait for thousands of years, you can prolly do that as well. The Night King exposed himself at the end and I still don't get it. Bad story telling. I mentioned that in the rate episode 3 thread and also read it here, he should have crushed Aryas neck without any hesitation. Another topic, but still. Because of that, we don't know 100% of the story arc between the Night King and Bran so maybe he had to show up to finish his job. Who knows? At the end, the Night King was created to fight the humans and he's been around for more than 8k years so I doubt he cares about a 1v1 at all. Just another wight for his army.. I'm still pissed about the ending tho. 

The NK acted similarly when attacking the CotF and the previous 3-Eyed Raven.  He went in with the other WW before he CotF were all dead.  He didn't wait there.  He has something in for the 3-Eyed Raven that will cause him to take risks.  Bran brought this up in Episode 2.

I can understand you not liking or agreeing with that, but I wouldn't necessarily call it bad storytelling.

Edited by Tywin Tytosson

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I don't think the NK was afraid of Jon necessarily, but rather that he recognized him as a person who could potentially kill him. He had his dragon stationed to keep Jon from getting to him. That doesn't mean that Jon could certainly win, but simply that the NK thought he was capable of it. 

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8 hours ago, Winterz said:

Ignoring Dumb&Dumber logic... I'm going to try to explain it, in a way similar to how fanboys try to explain plot holes that were never filled.

The WWs, or at least the Night King have some sort of control over fire. It could be that the Night King can shield himself with ice magic from Drogon's fire as opposed to shielding himself from being pierced by a dragon fire-made blade. It is entirely possible that Drogon could've killed him had he decided to bite him. Dragon teeth should work a lot like dragon fire blades.

Why would the Ice People have control over fire? Aside from the fact that we never see any evidence of this, aren't those supposed to be opposing forces in A Song of Ice and Fire?I

The only thing I can think of is that Valyrian steel is forged with dragonfire AND some secret extra magic we're not told about. Or Arya's dagger was somehow special in another way. Like Excalibur. 

 

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7 hours ago, Orleans said:

I'm glad we didn't have to see another Hollywood cliché where Jon fights the Night King. 

Was anyone honestly saying to themselves, "Take that, Hollywood cliches!" when a diminutive girl teleported behind the Big Bad and killed him with sleight of hand?

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Tywin Tytosson said:

 

You are right - he did seem that he couldn't be bothered with fighting Jon.  It reminded me of the other times that single combat to decide a war was suggested (Jamie to Robb, Jon to Ramsey).  Both times the one with the better army turned down the challenge.  The NK did the same here.

 

I still want some closure between those two characters. Because something was going on in the Night King's head when they met before. Something that went unresolved because expectations had to be subverted. 

 By the way, Jon and Ramsay actually did compete in single combat after all, if you'll recall. There was no build-up to Robb vs. Jaime in particular, but there was between Jaime and Ned and that came to a head.

Jon didn't have any direct relationship with Ramsay until their parley and the unfortunate Rickon business. Then he had a motivation to fight one-on-one. With the Night King, he had infinitely more motivation, and we know the Night King for whatever reason seemed to know Jon as a person and have plans concerning him. So the idea of these two clashing does not resemble the challenges you mention. 

Anywho, people act as though it would have to be an Old West-style stand-off where Jon leaves his hat on the bar in the saloon and everyone knows that means they bring their six-shooters to main street at high noon. Their actual confrontation was kinda cool, with Jon failing to sneak up and the Night King cutting him off with the dead. Except Jon really should have high-tailed it the moment he realized what was happening. He stands there like an idiot for too long. 

The Night King rightly doesn't bother. But there are a billion ways to write a plausible situation where they do clash. Jon has participated in one-on-one combat many times without making it seem like a video game Boss Battle. Although since his death I'm not sure we've seen him sword duel. (Ramsay was shield and fists.) We were teased at the Battle of the Bastards with that fellow who eventually got his throat eaten by Tormund. 

This episode was another tease, and not a pleasant one. 

 

 

Edited by darmody

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59 minutes ago, darmody said:

Was anyone honestly saying to themselves, "Take that, Hollywood cliches!" when a diminutive girl teleported behind the Big Bad and killed him with sleight of hand?

Right ? lmao.

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11 hours ago, Winterz said:

Valyrian steel and the death of a few White Walkers surprised the Walkers enough for them to start using armor and staying behind their lines instead of engaging the enemy head-on.

But the Night King was the strongest of the White Walkers by far and Jon got his ass beat by one which he only defeated by surprising him with a sort of sword he wasn't expecting.

The Night King was not afraid to get into the dirt as you see when he engaged his ancient enemies: the Children of the Forest. So there's nothing pointing to the fact that he'd be afraid of facing Jon in combat. In fact, it seems more like he couldn't care.

Jon easily killed both White Walkers he faced. The first fight was close because Jon was focused on finding the dragon glass they brought to Hardhome and the White Walker knocked the sword out of his hand from behind. Once they fought toe-to-toe with his sword the fight only last seconds. Then the Night King took the time to walk to the shore and made direct eye contact with Jon. Jon was definitely a person of interest to the him. 

The Night King definitely is powerful. He took a direct hit from dragon fire and it didn't hurt him so I doubt the CotFs fire and bombs were a threat. But Valyrian steel is more than just steel forged by Dragon fire. I believe magic is involved in the process. Magic was used to protect The Wall and by the TER to protect his cave. The NK needed a dragon to get past the wall and marking Bran to get to the old TER. Magic seems to be the common denominator in defeating him.

 

 

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1 hour ago, darmody said:

I still want some closure between those two characters. Because something was going on in the Night King's head when they met before. Something that went unresolved because expectations had to be subverted. 

Which two characters?  The NK and Jon? 

 

1 hour ago, darmody said:

 By the way, Jon and Ramsay actually did compete in single combat after all, if you'll recall. There was no build-up to Robb vs. Jaime in particular, but there was between Jaime and Ned and that came to a head.

I do recall.  :)  The single combat was after Ramsay had no other option (his army was defeated and he was by himself).  Ramsay was basically dead; he wanted to take Jon with him, just to be a ****.  Ramsay throws Jon's challenge back at him.  Being "quick of heart, but slow of mind" as Starks are described (or woud that be impulsive and quick to anger that Targaryens are described?  :drunk: ), Jon accepts the challenge.

You are correct, Robb and Jamie had no buildup.   Ned and Jamie didn't fight for all the stakes.  Nor did Jamie give Ned the option.

 

1 hour ago, darmody said:

Jon didn't have any direct relationship with Ramsay until their parley and the unfortunate Rickon business. Then he had a motivation to fight one-on-one. With the Night King, he had infinitely more motivation, and we know the Night King for whatever reason seemed to know Jon as a person and have plans concerning him. So the idea of these two clashing does not resemble the challenges you mention. 

I disagree.    I thought that the challenges did resemble each other.

 

1 hour ago, darmody said:

Anywho, people act as though it would have to be an Old West-style stand-off where Jon leaves his hat on the bar in the saloon and everyone knows that means they bring their six-shooters to main street at high noon. Their actual confrontation was kinda cool, with Jon failing to sneak up and the Night King cutting him off with the dead. Except Jon really should have high-tailed it the moment he realized what was happening. He stands there like an idiot for too long. 

 I absolutely agree with this.  I yelled at Jon when he stopped when the NK turned around.   :):angry2:

 

1 hour ago, darmody said:

The Night King rightly doesn't bother. But there are a billion ways to write a plausible situation where they do clash. Jon has participated in one-on-one combat many times without making it seem like a video game Boss Battle. Although since his death I'm not sure we've seen him sword duel. (Ramsay was shield and fists.) We were teased at the Battle of the Bastards with that fellow who eventually got his throat eaten by Tormund. 

He didn't duel but he did use Longclaw in BotB.

1 hour ago, darmody said:

This episode was another tease, and not a pleasant one. 

 

 

I can see what u are saying.  I expected some kind of swordfight myself.  I was expecting a couple of such fights, involving Jamie, Brienne, Jorah, Jon, Arya and the any of the 13 WW.  But I am OK with what we got.  Would it have provided more closure, if the NK beat Jon in the duel, but Arya still killed the NK?  Or if the duel starts but is then interrupted by other WW or by wights?

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Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, Tywin Tytosson said:

Which two characters?  The NK and Jon? 

Yes. They met twice before. First time the Night King taunted Jon, as if to say "come and get me!" or " I'm comin for you." Second time, he watched Jon down on that little island for who knows how long without trying to kill him. This episode, my interpretation was he knew what Jon was up to and did a sardonic smirk, "Not this time, buddy."

Which is all to say they had a relationship , and the Night King seemed to possess some knowledge of Jon and plans for his future. That's what gives me the feeling of having been teased. 

I didn't need to see Jon Baratheon the Night King in the chest at the Trident, but something more than what we got. 

 

Not sure why the Valyrian steel holders besides Arya and Jon weren't involved in any action where Valyrian steel was necessary. Why does the show take care to show us where these swords are and who possesses them, then bring most of them together (Joffrey's is missing, I think, and there are probably otgers) without it amounting to anything. Jaime, Brienne, and Jorah should have fought White Walkers. 

Or did that part of the budget go to something else?

Edited by darmody

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6 minutes ago, darmody said:

Yes. They met twice before. First time the Night King taunted Jon, as if to say "come and get me!" or " I'm comin for you." Second time, he watched Jon down on that little island for who knows how long without trying to kill him. This episode, my interpretation was he knew what Jon was up to and did a sardonic smirk, "Not this time, buddy."

Which is all to say they had a relationship , and the Night King seemed to possess some knowledge of Jon and plans for his future. That's what gives me the feeling of having been teased. 

I didn't need to see Jon Baratheon the Night King in the chest at the Trident, but something more than what we got. 

Gotcha.  There does seem to be some kind of recognition if not a relationship of a kind.   You thought that NK was going to do something specifically to Jon.

 

6 minutes ago, darmody said:

Not sure why the Valyrian steel holders besides Arya and Jon weren't involved in any action where Valyrian steel was necessary. Why does the show take care to show us where these swords are and who possesses them, then bring most of them together (Joffrey's is missing, I think, and there are probably otgers) without it amounting to anything. Jaime, Brienne, and Jorah should have fought White Walkers. 

Jamie has Joffrey's Valyrian steel sword.  That's what he uses in this episode.

I am of the same mind re. the Valyrian steel swords.  Why all the big deal about them just to put them into the rank and file?  I kept expecting Jamie, Brienne, et al to make their way to the Godswood and meet up with the WW.

6 minutes ago, darmody said:

Or did that part of the budget go to something else?

Don't know.  I think the story went with the WW not risking themselves unless sure of winning.

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