Throughout the final series of Game of Thrones, fans had a lot of questions about what on earth was going on in the show…
How did Arya manage to kill the Night King? How was Euron able to kill one of the dragons? And why did Dany have to burn the city?!
But one major question which left audiences hanging was what happened to the Dothraki after episode 3 and beyond?
Here’s everything you need to know about what happened to the Dothraki and the controversy surrounding them in GoT…
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We were introduced to the Dothraki back in season 1 after Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) was sold to their leader Khal Drogo (Jason Momoa) and became his wife.
When he died, Dany became the Khalessi – albeit after some struggle – and lead the horse lords across the Narrow Sea to Westeros to join her fight for the Iron Throne.
Because of this, we’ve seen some epic battle scenes involving the Dothraki over the past few GoT seasons. But none were as heartbreakingly cut short as in the most recent episode.
What happened to the Dothraki in episode 3?
Despite the flaming swords they were given by Melisandre providing us with some pretty spectacular visuals, they did little to help the Dothraki.
During the Battle of Winterfell, the horseback warriors charged into the darkness to attack the army of the dead.
But as the light of their flames diminished and screams are heard in the distance, it would appear the Dothraki were instantaneously killed.
Did any of the Dothraki survive?
Although there were too many deaths to mention in episode 3 of Game of Thrones, it looked like the majority – if not all – of the Dothraki were wiped out.
Some of the Dothraki even return as wights, to the dismay of the other characters.
But by the final episode (Sunday, May 19th), it would appear that the Dothraki were alive and kicking and doing lots of kicking back their enemies as well…
What did fans have to say?
The random resurgence of the Dothraki horde perplexed viewers and led to criticism of the showrunners’ (known as D&D) lack of plot continuity.
But the decisions made with the Dothraki and also the Unsullied throughout the final season has also resurfaced debates about their role in the Game of Thrones universe and in the Battle of Winterfell.
In particular, the conclusion of the show offering none for the Dothraki, despite their survival and presence since the beginning of the franchise.
Dothraki: The controversy
Many criticised the decision to sacrifice the Dothraki and the Unsullied first in episode 3’s battle, reiterating the point that these characters have been expendable and merely used to develop plot points over the years.
A point which was reaffirmed by the lack of conclusion for these characters.
But, as Adam Serwer of The Atlantic also implies, the Dothraki and Unsullied can also be viewed as expendable characters because of their race.
This has been one of the greatest issues raised with Game of Thrones, with The Guardian asking earlier this year, “great show, but is it racist?”
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What happened to the Dothraki in episode 6?
The Dothraki were offered no real conclusion by the end of the show.
We know they claimed King’s Landing for Daenerys alongside the Unsullied and the Northern troops so we can assume they remained in those areas after the destruction ended. There is a shot of some Dothraki at the end by the King’s Landing docks, so that is the only confirmation we have of this.
But without their Khaleesi, who they followed to Westeros, who knows where they would be heading after the show’s conclusion.
Maybe fans should demand a Dothraki spin-off and get the real answers we all are looking for!