Game of Thrones will forever live in infamy thanks to all the controversy surrounding its final season arc, and all the characters who were thrown under the bus as a result. The biggest character misstep (in the minds of many fans) is no doubt how Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss treated the story of Emilia Clarke's Daenerys Targaryen, who came to Westeros determined to help save humanity from the undead threat of the White Walkers, only to go mad with power in pursuit of The Iron Throne. Many Game of Thrones fans felt Dany's descent into madness was woefully unearned, but apparently there were clues spelling out that turn - including her wardrobe.
In a new interview, Game of Thrones costume designer Michele Clapton revealed that the white fur coat (with red linings) that Daenerys wore when first arriving in Westeros, actually held a major clue about where her mental state (and subsequently her storyline) were headed.
As Michele Clapton told TV Guide:
"Initially it was about the idea that if she's riding a dragon to the North, she should be warm. And then I decided that actually it's the first time she's performed a completely selfless task — because it's usually for her own gain — and on this occasion, it was actually for her love.
So, I loved this idea, as I developed this costume, that it's almost [as if] she sees herself as this saviour, this angel. And so when she arrives and descends on this dragon, she is this sort of angel of mercy.
I think it just said so much about her mental state at the time, how she saw herself."
It's also arguable that the crimson sash that Dany wears with the coat foreshadows the blood that would later leaks from her body, after Jon Snow stabs and kills her. After all, it's a scene between Jon and Dany alone (with dragons) that first hints at that visual foreshadow. Seems very spot-on, no...
As Game of Thrones season 8 went on, Daenerys' outfits took a much more noticeable turn: The dragon queen started wearing darker colors (black) and harder fabrics (leatherish materials), which brought the crimson highlights out in bigger and bigger showings. That's exactly the look Dany was sporting during the Fall of King's Landing, when she finally made the drastic turn to hardcore warmonger, and indiscriminately burns the citizens of King's Landing alive. By the time that Dany was standing on the rubble of the Red Keep, giving a speech about her never-ending campaign of conquest, her clothes definitely screamed "EVIL."
Of course, in the end, most viewers of Game of Thrones probably weren't deep enough cinephiles to really track Dany's crazy turn based on her outfits. But bless the hearts of the cast and crew for trying.
If you enjoy this insight - check out how Game of Thrones' finale set up Daenerys' resurrection!
Game of Thrones is available on HBO platforms. A Targaryen prequel series is in development.