Game of Thrones season 8's frosty welcome of Daenerys to Winterfell can be blamed on the bad blood between the Starks and Targaryens

The Starks were peaceful allies of the Targaryens for a very long time but one act of the Mad King ruined it all.


                            Game of Thrones season 8's frosty welcome of Daenerys to Winterfell can be blamed on the bad blood between the Starks and Targaryens

The people of Winterfell weren't exactly pleased to see Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke), arrive at Winterfell with her army of Dothrakis, the  Unsullied and two full-grown dragons alongside their King in the North. Daenerys noticed the frosty welcome she received from Sansa Stark and made her observation known to Jon Snow (Kit Harington), who then tried to explain to her that people in the North found it difficult to trust the Southerners- since we all know how it went the last time a King from the South arrived at Winterfell. However, even more than the aspect of a foreigner entering their land, it is the Starks' bloody history with the Targaryens which acts as a catalyst behind the Northerner's skepticism in welcoming a Southerner.

The history of the brawl between the two houses doesn't go too far and almost runs parallel to Robert's rebellion against the same house which is now preparing to take over King's Landing. While on one hand the Targaryens were known to have brought together the Seven Kingdoms and for the longest period ruled peacefully, it was the reign of the Mad King, Aerys II Targaryen, Daenerys' father, that saw the land fall under tyrannical rule. When Daenerys', brother Rhaegar, fell in love with Ned Stark's (Sean Bean) sister, Lyanna, things began to get complicated between the two houses. The Starks at their origin were the oldest family to have ruled over any land, and only the Lannisters go as far back as them.

Bran built the Wall to keep away the White Walkers and swore to send at least one Stark from every generation to guard the Wall. (Facebook)

While Brandon, the Builder named House Stark as "The Kings Of Winter," it wasn't until the last King of Winter, Torrhen, who came to be known as the King Who Knelt that things changed. Torrhen Stark chose to bend the knee to Aegon I Targaryen, which marked the end of the Starks' rule as the Kings of Winter and restored them as Wardens of the North. However, when Robert's rebellion- which now we know was based on a lie- came to force, the Starks were made to believe that the Mad King's son, Rhaegar, had kidnapped and raped Lyanna. Things were already complicated between them, as Rhaegar was married to Elia Martell and Robert Baratheon was engaged to Lyanna Stark.



 

Soon their relationship gave rise to a rebellion when the Mad King burned down Lyanna's father, Rickard Stark. Then, Ned Stark supported Robert in the rebellion while Jaime Lannister slayed the Mad King. Rickard Stark was the head of House Stark and Lord Paramount of the North and his death acted like the perfect spark for Robert's rebellion. After Rickard's death, when the Mad King asked Jon Arryn to hand him Ned Stark, Jon Arryn joined the rebellion, and along with Hoster Tully, they removed the Mad King from the throne. 

The Starks were named Wardens in the North. (IMDb)

It is, therefore, quite justified why the people of the North are looking at Daenerys, not in awe but in uncertainty, as they do not know if one more Stark will die in their attempt to support a foreigner. After Rickard, it was his son Ned Stark who was beheaded while he served as the Hand of the King, and now that Jon- who is basically the King in the North- has bent the knee, is he destined to meet a similar fate? He is already on the brink of some serious identity crisis, as he is now the heir to the Iron Throne as Aegon Targaryen. We will only know what lies ahead for Jon/Aegon once the series returns with Episode 2 on April 21.