Spoilers ahead for Game of Thrones through Episode 4 of Season 8.
Game of Thrones is arguably the grandest and most cinematic television show of all time, and episodes attract huge numbers of viewers each week. While that means tens of millions of people witness the epic plot twists like Arya killing the Night King and the sudden death of one of the dragons, it also means that tens of millions of people see errors that make it from set to screen.
The fourth episode of Season 8 featured a blooper that was caught by a whole bunch of viewers, and the coffee cup error is only the latest. Other mistakes range from hair-related to weapons malfunctions. Read on for some of the most fun flubs in Game of Thrones history!
Starbucks Gets A Northern Location
The latest example of a Game of Thrones set gaffe making it to the screen is also one of the most noticeable. At the feast celebrating the defeat of the Night King, Dany's happiness faded to loneliness and isolation as everybody showered Jon Snow with their love and devotion. Of course, given that this was the North and Arya Stark was the one who stabbed the Night King to death, it makes sense that the Starks (including Jon) would be the stars of the celebration.
Alas, poor Dany still had to listen to Tormund rave about Jon riding a dragon and roasting wights, with nothing to console her but her wine... and her coffee. Yes, quite visible during part of the celebration scene was what looks like a Starbucks coffee cup, and the internet definitely noticed. The resulting memes were hilarious, and widespread enough that HBO actually released a statement and went back to the episode to edit the cup out. The internet is forever, though, and so is Dany's latte.
Daenerys The (Seriously) Unburnt
One of the most iconic images of Daenerys Targaryen comes from her final scene in Season 1, and I don't mean just because she was naked. After walking into Drogo's pyre where her three dragon eggs (and Mirri Maz Duur) were roasting, the remaining Dothraki and Ser Jorah clearly gave her up for dead. Then, the next day, she rose out of the ashes with three baby dragons strategically curled around her body, clothes burned off and covered in soot. Thus was Daenerys the Unburnt born.
The flub comes from the fact that Dany's hair remained intact despite the flames on this occasion, and all others when she showed off her heat resistance by allowing herself to be engulfed by flames. It doesn't really make sense that her hair would be fireproof, and it's definitely not fireproof in the books. An honorable mention for things not burning goes out to the Night King at the Battle of Winterfell, when not even his clothes were burnt despite being blasted with dragonfire.
Melisandre Removed Her Necklace
In Season 6, the beautiful red priestess Melisandre revealed that there's a lot more to her than meets the eye. The woman was almost always seen wearing a necklace with a large red ruby that glowed when she used her magic. When she removed her necklace in Season 6, however, she aged rapidly as the glamour wore off, showing her true age. She died in Season 8 by removing her necklace and allowing age to catch up with her after the Night King was defeated.
The reveal of old Melisandre was shocking in Season 6, and her manner of death in Season 8 was fitting, but both really relied on fans forgetting a certain scene from Season 4: when Melisandre removed her necklace to take a bath. She remained as beautiful and enigmatic as ever as she bathed without her iconic jewelry. Unless Melisandre somehow aged a few centuries between Season 4 and Season 6, this definitely counts as a flub.
Sansa Is The Real Secret Targaryen
The opening credits of Game of Thrones are among the most impressive in television history, taking viewers on a ride throughout Westeros and Essos, touching on where each episode would visit. The credits also include a small sigil by the names of the actors playing characters from certain houses. The Lannister cast members are marked by lions, the Targaryen actors are marked by dragons (although Kit Harington still has a wolf in the Season 8 credits), and the Stark actors are marked by wolves.
Except for Sophie Turner in the Season 1 credits. The actress who plays Sansa Stark had a Targaryen dragon by her name in the opening credits. Now, this was well before viewers had reason to suspect that Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon, and it was pretty clear that this had to be a mistake, but book readers familiar with all the theories about secret Targaryens undoubtedly got a laugh. This wasn't the only instance of a mistaken sigil either, as Iain Glen, Emilia Clarke, and Jack Gleeson also got the wrong animals at different points.
Ned spent most of Season 1 unraveling the mystery of why Jon Arryn was killed, and one big clue came when he met Robert Baratheon's black-haired, blue-eyed bastard son. He wasn't able to fully connect the dots until he got his hands on a genealogy book that recorded the hair color of members of the noble houses. The Baratheons were all "black of hair," meaning Joffrey, Tommen, and Myrcella were Jaime's bastards. Between the book and the hair color of Gendry and Renly, Ned's conclusion was clearly accurate.
Season 2 introduced Stannis, who also had black (although somewhat graying) hair, supporting the conclusion further. Baratheons have black hair, no matter the color of the mother's hair. Except, apparently, for Shireen Baratheon, who had light brown hair. Now, Game of Thrones may have simply not wanted to dye young Kerry Ingram's hair or stick the poor kid in a wig, but her light brown hair stands out.
As does Gendry's in Seasons 7 and 8, for that matter. His hair was very dark black in the first three seasons of the show, but has been very light in the latest two seasons. I do give Thrones a break on Gendry's hair, though, as it seems Gendry lost his black hair because actor Joe Dempsie shaved his head before returning to Game of Thrones, and there's simply not enough hair to dye.
As for the next blooper, a simple image doesn't do it justice. Take a look at the gif:
Valyrian Steel Isn't What It Used To Be
Jon Snow has wielded the Valyrian steel sword Longclaw ever since the very first season, and its unusual properties helped him take down wights and even a White Walker back in "Hardhome." Valyrian steel is known for its incredible strength and convenient light weight, and only a limited number of blades are left since the Doom of Valyria. Not all blacksmiths are even able to reforge it. Basically, Valyrian steel swords are sturdy weapons.
So, Jon's floppy sword in the Battle of the Bastards definitely stuck out, especially since the wolf head pommel is visible to prove that it is Longclaw and not another sword he's wielding. Kit Harington was presumably given a rubber weapon for his swing up onto Jon Snow's horse, and the fake was very obvious in the finished product. Hey, at least being smacked by the broadside of the rubber sword presumably didn't hurt the horse!
Ramsay's Magical Disappearing Dogs
If there's one plot twist that just about every Game of Thrones fan could probably cheer for, it's Sansa and Theon's escape from Ramsay Bolton. They jumped from the walls of Winterfell in the Season 5 finale, but escape wasn't so simple. Ramsay sent his men and his hounds to track them down, and even crossing an icy river didn't throw the dogs off the scent. Luckily, Brienne and Podrick showed up in time to save Sansa and Theon from the men and the dogs.
The dogs mysteriously disappeared, however, almost as soon as Brienne and Podrick galloped into the scene. From a practical standpoint, Game of Thrones probably just couldn't risk having dogs around while horses were stomping and swords were swinging in a stunt sequence. This is the show that just unceremoniously sent off Ghost, after all. Still, after how big a deal was made out of Ramsay's hounds, their disappearance after hunting down Sansa and Theon was noticeable.
The Northern Air Is Good For Dany's Hair
In case you thought we were done with the hair errors, there's one more left! Daenerys has worn intricate braids in her hair for years, and her arrival in the North was no exception. Her sleek, bright braids certainly helped her stand out from the Northerners even more than she already did, and that made it somewhat more noticeable when the pile of braids on Dany's head changed from one shot to another in the same scene.
Emilia Clarke apparently wore two different wigs during filming the big arrival scene that opened Season 8, and the camera caught shots of the back of her head with the different braids. Then again, this was Dany's first extended time in the North. Maybe her special nonflammable hair also possesses magical re-braiding properties when exposed to the air up north.
Now, for an honorable mention mistake:
Honorable Mention: Gendry Doesn't Know His Own Name
In the fourth episode of Season 8, Daenerys decided to legitimize Gendry, turning the bastard blacksmith into Gendry Baratheon, Lord of Storm's End. That's all well and good for Dany's attempt to secure an ally in Storm's End; the mistake came from Gendry's own mouth when he went to share the good news with Arya, and I don't just mean how he went about proposing.
Gendry excitedly announced that he's no longer "Gendry Rivers" after being legitimized into Gendry Baratheon, and I could almost hear the groans of all the A Song of Ice and Fire book readers who were watching. Those of us who have read the books know that Gendry's birth in King's Landing means that he should be Gendry Waters, if anything. Just as bastards from the North are Snows and bastards from Dorne are Sands, bastards from King's Landing are Waters.
That is, acknowledged bastards in these regions get the last names. Gendry was never acknowledged by Robert, so he wasn't a Waters or a Rivers or anything else. He was just Gendry. Do either of these issues make any difference for the last two episodes of the show? Probably not, and "Rivers" rather than "Waters" was probably just a writing error. This mistake gets an honorable mention because book readers are likely the only ones who noticed or cared, but those of us who do care really cared about it.
Will the last two episodes of Game of Thrones be free of mistakes? Only time will tell. Tune in to HBO on the next two Sundays at 9 p.m. ET to see how the grand saga comes to an end.