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Queen Daenerys Targaryen
"My reign has just begun."

Played By: Emilia Clarke

Voiced By: Adriana Casas (Latin American Spanish), Monserrat Aguilar (Latin American Spanish/young), Risa Shimizu (Japanese), Marie Tirmont (French), Gabrielle Pietermann (German)

"They have a choice. They can either live in my new world or die in their old one."

Daenerys Stormborn is the last known living scion of House Targaryen and therefore, is the claimant Ruling Queen of the Andals and the Rhoynar and the First Men, Lady of the Seven Kingdoms and Protectrix of the Realm. At the beginning of the series, she was subject to the sordid whims and vile manipulations of her cruel elder brother, Viserys. Through her arranged marriage to Khal Drogo, Daenerys discovers her own power, influence, and self-worth along with the realization that she is far better qualified to reclaim her father's throne than her deranged sibling. Using blood magic, she hatches three dragons for the first time in hundreds of years and is suspected to perhaps even be Azor Ahai, the Princess who was Promised. Daenerys has gone from pawn to player, traveled the breadth of Essos, gathered an army and conquered three cities, building a reputation that has even reached her father's enemies across the sea in Westeros. After abolishing slavery in Essos once and for all, Daenerys has returned to her birthplace of Dragonstone in Westeros in order to reclaim the Iron Throne from her enemies.

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  • Abusive Parents: Because they were forced into exile following the Targaryen dynasty being overthrown, Dany was brought up by her brother Viserys. He was not the most felicitous of guardians; abusing her emotionally, physically and it is also implied sexually.
  • Action Girl: Though not a trained fighter by any means, Daenerys has survived her fair share of hostile situations, often relying on her own wits if her companions cannot assist her and fighting from dragonback once Drogon is big enough for her to ride. During the Great Battle of Winterfell, she grabs a dragonglass sword, despite never having wielded one in her life, and teams up with Ser Jorah to hold back some wights. She even manages to kill a few.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: At the end of Season 1, she still has a full head of hair after she steps into the blaze of Khal Drogo's funeral pyre with her three dragon eggs and stays there until the following morning. In the books, all her hair is burned off. Poor Dany also goes through two periods of near-starvation, one in Clash and the other in Dance and she is even implied to be anorexic. Whenever George mentions food in her chapters, she frequently loses her appetite and only eats a bit of fruit at most!
  • Adaptational Badass:
    • Unlike the novels, Dany shows consistent immunity to all things incendiary and even heat in general before the famous pyre scene. She picks up a blazing hot dragon's egg with nary a mark. She's not sun-burnt in the Red Waste despite having pale skin, gets dragon-flame from her three kiddos shot past and nearly through her without any ill effects, develops a more intimate bond with her children to the point that she can lock them away herself and almost tame Drogon with calm and poise alone; and she even assassinates every one of the Dothraki Khals gathered in the temple of Vaes Dothrak by starting one helluva fire, which consumes them all but leaves her once again unburnt in the process. Hell, some fans even think Dany has outright Playing with Fire powers with how the show portrayed her execution of Khal Moro. Whereas George Martin confirmed that in the books, Dany was only immune to fire during the ritual she performed to hatch her dragons. invoked
    • Thanks to her being four years older in the show, it is she and not her advisers who come up with the battle plans in Seasons 3 and 4, plus her army does not seem to be on the verge of starving when they reach Meereen; showing her talent for logistics and conquering. Now, ruling on the other hand...
    • One of the major aspects of Daenerys' character arc in the book is that she was never 100% in control of her own fate even after becoming Queen, she was constantly manipulated and only managed to win by exploiting her opponents own arrogance with help from her advisors. In other words, she must learn to play the game. Here in the show, after her visit to Qarth and her spiritual trip, she was never not in complete control. Her marriage to Hizdahr zo Loraq is a stand out case: In the book, she was forced into it in a desperate attempt to keep the Sons of the Harpy in check, was almost poisoned and Hizdahr did actually have his (ten second) way with her. In the show, she forces him into a dragon-fire shotgun engagement solely as a political means to an end and she outright tells her paramour, Daario, that she will not even dream of trying to create a new Ghiscari dynasty with Hizdahr; considering her contempt for their society.
    • Her relationship with Daario Naharis. In the books, she is a 16-year old who is utterly infatuated with him and jumps into bed with him out of loneliness and despair with the niggling suspicion that his primary interest in her is her power. At one point, she even longs for a carefree life with Daario and thinks she'd give up her crown for that life. In the show, she is somewhat smitten but resists him for a while before casually picking him as a consort for entertainment after a hard day's ruling in Meereen.
    • In Season 6, she rides Drogon straight into a fleet of artillery cruisers and obliterates one so thoroughly the whole fleet surrenders, effectively defeating the Wise Masters (which she has yet to do in the books).
    • In Season 7, she rides Drogon and commands a horde of Dothraki, this time defeating the Lannister army. Also, she saves Jon and company from an undead horde.
    • In Season 8, she rides Drogon yet again to fight against the dead in "The Long Night". Later in the episode, when she's grounded and separated from Drogon, she picks up a dragonglass sword and goes Back-to-Back Badasses with Jorah, and actually managed to kill a few wights herself.
  • Adaptational Hairstyle Change: At the end of A Game of Thrones all of her hair is burned off when she survives stepping into Drogo's funeral pyre; it starts slowly growing back by A Clash of Kings. In the show, her hair is left untouched and she has long hair all throughout the show.
  • Adaptational Jerkass: Dany from the books often shows a softer side that is sometimes missing from the show:
    • In the books, Daenerys shows horrified despair when Viserys draws steel in Vaes Dothrak, knowing that her brother has sentenced himself to death. She also pleads with Viserys for a reconciliation. In the show, her reaction to his execution is dispassionate. In the books, it's evident Daenerys still loved her brother, despite his abusive behavior toward her, and remembers him with guilt. She acknowledges his faults but also how he took care of her in their early years together until he snapped under the strain of their exile and difficult life. On the show, when she reminisces on her recently-departed sibling, it is without a hint of fondness and is instead dripping with scorn or derision.
    • In the books, Daenerys does not lock Xaro and Doreah in a vault to die. Xaro is still alive as of A Dance with Dragons, whereas Doreah perished from a wasting illness while Dany's khalasar were forced to wander the Red Waste.
    • In the books, Daenerys doesn't threaten to burn cities, nor does she feed a noble to her dragons to send a message in response to Barristan's death at the hands of the Harpy. Barristan is still alive in the books, for one thing, but Dany is also horrified at the idea of her dragons eating anyone.
    • She also has at least a couple of Meereenese nobles executed at random in the show on the grounds of "justice", either with crucifixion or dragonfire. Whereas when the city submits in the books, Dany lets the nobility choose from among their own number whom they will hand over to her to pay for their crime of having child slaves nailed to posts to taunt her.
    • In later seasons of the show, much is made of Dany needing advisors around her who will keep her worst instincts in check. In the books, when Dany and her advisors disagree on such things, it's consistently the advisors who are suggesting actions more ruthless than she's comfortable with and Dany who is pushing back against them. This goes in hand with Jorah Mormont undergoing Adaptational Nice Guy to serve as her Morality Chain, whereas his book version was not highly ethical.
  • Adaptational Modesty: You wouldn't think it considering Emilia has had to take her kit off more than any other of the leading ladies on the show. Twelve separate scenes, only two of them with Modesty Bedsheet, over seven seasons; but this is in fact in the books Dany is not only naked when trying to face her husband in the marriage bed but also takes him outside their tent to make out in front of the entire khalasar as per another omitted Dothraki cultural norm. We don't get the Womb of the World bathing scene and subsequent sex scene with Drogo. Really, there are many bath scenes with Dany and her handmaidens from the books which are cut. As is the single-breast baring Quartheen dress, sex scenes with Irri, Daario, Hizdahr, Dany losing most of her yellow silks to Drogon's fire breath are removed, as is a scene where she cavorts around trying to get dressed while Jorah is in her room, driving him to near madness with lust.
  • Adaptational Seriousness: TV Daenerys is almost always grave, with the showrunners reportedly having even directed Emilia Clarke not to smile in some scenes. Book Daenerys is allowed to be light-hearted more often, with George Martin even citing her sense of humor as a reason he would choose Daenerys if he had to go on vacation with an A Song of Ice and Fire character.
  • Adaptational Sexuality: In the books, she occasionally has sex with her handmaid Irri as a kind of stress relief (indicating that she's bisexual since she also enjoyed having sex with Drogo), but in the show, she's discomforted when she gets a little too into Doreah's tutoring on lovemaking in "The Kingsroad".
  • Adaptational Wimp: In the books, she becomes a skilled and spirited equestrian in an instant at her wedding feast, leaping a campfire on her silver. She physically shoves Viserys in their confrontation in the long grass and never allows him to be around her without her kos like she does in Season 1, which in the show earns her a cut cheek-bone from her cruel brother that really should have spelled his death two episodes earlier than it happened. Qarth welcomes her as the Mother of Dragons with open arms and an honour guard parade in the books instead of treating her like a beggar, and her Battle in the Center of the Mind and eventual victory over the warlocks known as The Undying is much more complex and impressive than the show's watered-down couple of visions relating to The Final Temptation. Furthermore, Dany from the show has never shown to be willing to go full Joan of Arc and act as a standard-bearer within an assaulting army, as Dany from the books wishes to do in the First Siege of Meereen to increase the morale of her men. Dany from the show doesn't shame her people into trying to care for terminally ill refugees by personally washing and feeding the diseased, and though there are many faults in her ruling, the Harpy's Sons never dare commit open attacks in broad daylight on Dany from the books as there are many loyal divisions of freedmen with awesome company names like "The Mother's Men" being drilled by the Unsullied to take care of civil security and most of all...
    • Like Tyrion's excised tumbling tricks, Dany from the books is much more lithe and agile than the cherubic Ms. Clarke, leaping down into Daznak's Pit in a seminal moment in A Dance with Dragons, rolling under a column of Drogon's flame breath and proceeding to bull-whip some obedience into him all while on fire. She mounts him and survives a volley of crossbow bolts while in flight, followed by a good two weeks of malnourishment and a couple of days of poison berry-induced dysentery and fever dreams in the wilderness. Phew!
  • Affably Evil: Even after she goes Ax-Crazy and makes plans to Take Over the World, she is genuinely polite and friendly to her loyal followers, especially Jon Snow, and emotionally entreats him to join her in 'breaking the wheel' and creating a new world.
  • Affectionate Nickname:
    • Drogo calls her the "moon of [his] life".
    • Jorah continues to refer to Daenerys as "Khaleesi" long after the death of Khal Drogo.
    • Averted however with her nickname "Dany" since the last person who called her by that name was her abusive older brother Viserys. When Jon Snow calls her by that name, Daenerys gently tells Jon that her brother was the last person to call her that and her brother wasn't a good person. In Season 8, she does let Jon refer to her as Dany though, so perhaps she just needed to get used to it.
  • Age-Gap Romance: With Drogo; she's in her teens and he's in his thirties. Also with Daario; she's in her late teens/early twenties while he appears to be in his thirties.
  • Age Lift: Inevitable, as Daenerys is only 13 years old at the start of the book series but even HBO could not get away with sexually explicit scenes and nudity involving a character so young (even 17 is pushing it, though the actress of course was in her 20s). She is initially 17 on the show, as one 'History of Westeros' features on the Season 1 Blu-ray establishes 17 years has passed since her father was overthrown, at which point her mother was still pregnant with her.
  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: Daenerys very rarely begs for anything, as she herself admits, but in "The Last of the Starks," she desperately pleads with Jon not to reveal his true parentage to anyone else, as she knows it will make her conquest of Westeros even messier — and she turns out to be right.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Having undergone a Sanity Slippage and a subsequent Face–Heel Turn, Dany ultimately dies at the hands of the man she loves. In the aftermath, her followers are shown grieving over her, albeit in different ways. Grey Worm and the Unsullied condone her actions and demand Jon's execution. Though her Hand, Tyrion, urged a reluctant Jon to kill Daenerys to protect the people and recognizes that she has sacrificed every moral restraint she began with, he can't be sure her assassination was right and appreciates her initial intentions. Jon weeps over Daenerys while holding her body and doesn't think killing Daenerys was right.
  • All for Nothing:
    • She lampshades this in "The Wolf and the Dragon", telling Jon that if Cersei doesn't agree to a truce to fight the White Walkers, then everything they sacrificed to retrieve a wight as proof will be for nothing, including the death of one of her dragons. When she learns from Jaime Lannister in Season 8 that Cersei went back on their agreement and isn't coming to help, she is not happy for this very reason.
    • Her entire story arc turns out to be this. All her struggles to regain the Iron Throne costs her closest friends, allies, two of her dragon children, and her own sanity, culminating in her massacring hundreds of thousands of civilians after surrender. When she finally reclaims her lifelong goal of the Iron Throne, the path of destruction she has sown to get there is too great and she refuses Jon's pleas to show mercy as she now believes continued fire and blood is necessary to build her vision. Unable to dissuade her, Jon reluctantly stabs her to stop her destruction and stunned, Daenerys dies in a Jon's arms. She doesn't even get the chance to sit on the throne she's dreamed of her whole life. However, it is slightly mitigated by the fact she did manage to stop slavery in Slaver's Bay, helped save Westeros from the White Walkers, and laid the foundation for an elective monarchy (a step above the hereditary monarchy she seemed bent on destroying), so while her quest for the Iron Throne failed, she did manage to leave behind quite a legacy, some it positive.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Dany's great love was her husband Khal Drogo, a tough warrior, barbarian, rapist, and pillager. Later, she gets hot for amoral mercenary Daario Naharis, who first gets her attention by bringing severed heads of her enemies to her. On the other hand, her loyal friend and advisor Ser Jorah Mormont's feelings for her are so unrequited that he is dubbed "Lord Friendzone" by the fandom, and her almost second husband, Hizdahr zo Loraq, a non-fighter and probably the most decent guy of them, is a straight-up The Chew Toy, subjected by Daenerys to And Now You Must Marry Me for political reasons, but she blatantly states that she won't be faithful to him and seems to take pleasure from watching Daario bully Hizdahr right next to her. This is finally averted in Season 7 when she meets Jon Snow and the two slowly fall in love with each other due in part because of Jon's strong character, his earnest desire to save the entire world, and his displeasure in killing despite his talent for it.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: In her eyes, usurpers are occupying the throne of her father and her brothers, Rhaegar and Viserys. She is right though still oblivious about the kind of man her father really was. She later pulls this on Meereen, taking the Great Pyramid as her Keep and throne room and draping her family's flag across the Harpy at its peak. She does retake Dragonstone, the island of her birth, after it was vacated by Stannis Baratheon, the man who chased her out on King Robert's orders.
  • Ambition Is Evil: She is convinced early on that she is destined to become a ruler. She has ancestral rights for the Throne of Westeros, she believes herself special after surviving the fire that gave birth to her dragons, and after suffering abuse from her brother and husband she won't bend to anyone's will. In Season 2, in Quarth she states that she is "no ordinary woman" and shouts that she "will take what is [hers], with fire and blood". In Season 8 she honors that promise — her desire for power and belief that she knows better have driven her into Black-and-White Insanity, and she burns an entire city that has just surrendered for daring to ever stand against her. In the end, Drogon destroys the Iron Throne - the symbol of ambition that has lead to his mother's demise.
  • Anti-Hero: She starts out as a Classical Anti-Hero, being a fundamentally kind and well-meaning girl, but intially lacking the confidence, wisdom and resolve to break free of those that seek to control and exploit her. She quickly develops into a Pragmatic Hero, being willing to take more ruthless methods in her pursuit of justice and a better world for the downtrodden.
  • The Anti-Nihilist: She strives to be a fair and just ruler in a world that laughs at the very notion. Her principles and empathy for the downtrodden make her malleable and vengeful to those who harm her "children", and she is very much in pursuit of a high ideal in a world that only respects strength and cruelty. And even those are only temporary shore-ups of authority. Therefore, although from a family renowned as conquerors and although a good portion of the city she just escaped from would like nothing more than to see her dead. She still wants to immediately head back because doing good is in her blood and her people need her.
  • Anti-Villain: Becomes this in Season 8. She's largely Type Well-Intentioned (with some shades of Type Woobie), believing her increasingly ruthless quest to become Queen of the Seven Kingdoms is just as it will enable her to make the realm a better place.
    Daenerys: I'm here to free the world from tyrants. That is my destiny. And I will serve it no matter the cost.
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: She falls victims to this in Season 7 when she dismisses Jon Snow's warnings about the Night's King and the White Walkers coming from the North in the same conversation where she boasts about achieving several things that were thought to have been not possible, like proving dragons still exist. Although in all fairness, according to Tyrion, its very likely she doesn't want to admit its true because of how much it inconveniences her goals since she has invested too much suffering and time to come to Westeros only to be told that there's another bigger war North of them, and that her current conflict, which she has dedicated her entire life to, i.e. taking Westeros back and winning the Iron Throne, is meaningless. As the series progresses, she is a Skeptic No Longer after being summoned to save the Wight Hunt expedition from the undead.
  • Arc Words: Had even more internal mantras in the books but we get some new spoken ones just for the show.
    • "I do not have / you have / a gentle heart"
    • "I will / I / take what is mine."
    • "I want to go / we have to go / home."
    • "They are the only children I will ever have."
    • "A dragon is not a slave."
  • Arch-Enemy: To the Slave Masters during her campaign to liberate Slaver's Bay, to Cersei Lannister for her bid to retake the Iron throne, and to The Night King after he killed Viserion.
  • Arranged Marriage: To Khal Drogo, to secure an army for her brother. Later, she arranges her own marriage to Hizdahr zo Loraq, showing how much she and her circumstances have changed.
  • Attempted Rape: In Season 6, Khal Moro makes it clear he intends to bed her whether she wants it or not. She's able to deter him by revealing she is the widow of Khal Drogo, as it's forbidden to lay with a former khaleesi. After deciding Daenerys won't become dosh khaleen, however, Moro tells her he and the other khals will take turms raping her, then give her to their bloodriders and then their horses "if there's anything left." Daenerys remains remarkably calm and even smiles in the face of such threats, as unbeknownst to them she's already enacted her escape plan. It doesn't end well for Moro and his buddies.
  • Ax-Crazy: While relatively stable at first, after a severe Trauma Conga Line in Season 8, where she loses almost everybody in her court, she decides to kickstart her move to dethrone Cersei by putting the whole of King’s Landing to the torch, going out of her way to massacre surrendering enemy soldiers and civilians alike... And then she has aspirations to do this to any other city in Westeros that might stand against her.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: One at the ends of both Seasons 1 and 3. Significant in that Dany secures enough loyalty with the Dothraki that most of her Khas stayed with her along with the majority of the Lzahareen she'd rescued. They prostrate themselves in near-mythical reverence after the last Targaryen not only survives the blazing pyre in an all-night incubation period, completely unscathed, but also by birthing freakin' dragons. The second comes outside Yunkai, where legions of freed slaves exult Daenerys as a nearly god-like figure reminiscent of the Holy Mother and affectionately dub her 'Mhysa' on top of being their liberator. She eventually claims command of all the Dothraki khalasars in Season 6 through religious awe and the small matter of decapitating the leadership of every gathered horde; reuniting them as her husband did and proving herself the strongest there.
  • Awful Truth:
    • Learning from Ser Barristan and later Tyrion that her father was really the bad guy during the "War of the Usurper". She takes a while to come to terms with it:
      Daenerys: I know what my father was, what he did. I know that the Mad King earned his name.
    • In Season 8, she learns the Night King has turned Viserion into a wight. Later, she learns from Jon that he is the legitimate son of Lyanna Stark and Daenerys's older brother Rhaegar Targaryen, making him her nephewthe thing that upsets Jon. While Daenerys is accustomed to the incestuous practices of her family, she realizes Jon, as Rhaegar's son, has a stronger claim than hers to the Iron Throne and she is understandably shocked and upset, as this means that a cornerstone of her identity and one of the main things that kept her going — that she is the last Targaryen and rightful heir to her family's dynasty — is actually untrue and could render everything she has worked for pointless.
      "The related thing, to her, is so normal,” [Emilia] Clarke explains to Entertainment Weekly. “She could have easily married her brother. It's not a thing. It's a thing for Jon, but let's just forget about that. The main thing is we're up for the same promotion and I’ve been working for it for my entire existence."
      "This is my whole existence," Clarke emphasized. "Since birth! Dany literally was brought into this world going: RUN! These f—ers [in Westeros] have f—ed everything up. Now it's, 'You're our only hope.' There's so much she's taken on in her duty in life to rectify. There's so much she’s seen and witnessed and been through and lost and suffered and hurt to get here... and Jon doesn't even want it!"
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: Ends up facing off against a group of wights back-to-back with Jorah in "The Long Night".
  • Badass Adorable: Starts out as one, an innocent teen princess who quickly learns to dominate the Dothraki and make their khal her bitch. And it only gets better from there, although the "inherently vulnerable" part fades away as she matures into a powerful queen and a regal, intimidating woman.
  • Badass Boast: She makes a few of these, even though she had the unfortunate tendency to make them when she is in absolutely no position to carry them out in Season 2, so they often ended up being disregarded or thrown in her face. Gradually, her bite levels up to her bark.
    Daenerys Stormborn: The next time you raise a hand to me will be the last time you have hands!
    The Queen of the Andals and the First Men: They will like it far less when I am done with them.
    The Protector of the Seven Kingdoms: What happens to things that don't bend...?
    The Mother of Dragons: They can live in my new world. Or they can die in their old one.
    The Unburnt: I'm not going to stop the wheel. I'm going to break the wheel.
    The Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea: You are small men. None of you are fit to lead the Dothraki. But I am. So I will.
    The Breaker of Chains: And I promise this. If you ever betray me... I'll burn you alive.
  • Badass Cape: She wears a travelling cloak during her time conquering the slave cities and she has several half-cape ensembles once she reaches Westeros.
  • Badass Long Coat: Dons a grey mink fur-lined asymmetrical robe during the Field of Fire 2.0, then a silver-white number for a flight beyond the Wall.
  • Batman Gambit: The Sack of Astapor, because she knew that Drogon would never allow himself to be given away, while Kraznys mo Nakloz, being a slave master his whole life, thought anything could be bought or sold.
  • Battle Couple: With Jon in "The Long Night".
  • The Beautiful Elite: Considered to be one of the most beautiful woman in the world and is born into Westeros' ruling dynasty. She also conquers an empire that straddles two continents.
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: One of the straightest examples in a world full of subversions and aversions from both ends; she's renowned both for her beauty and for her heroism. Until Season 8.
  • Became Their Own Antithesis: States several times that she is not her father and that she does not want to become like him. Unfortunately that's exactly what she ends up doing in the final season.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: In the penultimate episode of the series, she finally achieves her goal of claiming the Iron Throne. However, in the process she has lost nearly everyone she loves, her morals and her sanity.
  • Becoming the Boast: Her title Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea was more In Name Only since her horde was comprised of the pitiful remnants that stayed alongside her after Drogo's death. That is until Season 6, when she really backs it up.
  • Benevolent Boss: She is usually this to her subjects. She treats them more like friends or even family than servants at times, and will go out of her way to protect them and right wrongs done against them. The servants she obtains through slavery she frees and requests that they follow her of their own free will, rather than demanding their loyalty. This tends to greatly endear her to people. That being said, one thing she has very low tolerance for is betrayal, as Mirri, Doreah, Mossador and Jorah find out the hard way.
    "I am Daenerys Stormborn of House Targaryen, of the blood of Old Valyria. I am the dragon's daughter. And I swear to you that those who would harm you will die screaming!"
  • Beware the Nice Ones: She's one of the kinder people on the show, displaying particular compassion for the weak and helpless. Once you've crossed her though, there is no coming back. And you should probably get ready to die in some horrific fashion.
    • After Mirri Maz Duur successfully manages to kill her husband and son, Daenerys has her tied to Khal Drogo's funeral pyre. Mirri Maz Duur claims that she won't scream for Daenerys. She is so wrong. Daenerys has taken Mirri's earlier statement that "only death can pay for life" to heart, and is using Mirri's death to serve a cause greater than just revenge.
    • After Pyat Pree tries to imprison her along with her dragons in the House of the Undying, she has them flambé him alive, then proceeds to seal Xaro and Doreah in his own empty treasure vault for betraying her.
    • Kraznys mo Nakloz repeatedly insults her while hiding behind what he thinks is the language barrier and is an amoral slaver on top of that. So she has him immolated on the spot during the battle of Astapor. And there was much rejoicing.
    • As of the sacking of Astapor, Dany has killed more named characters than any two other people on the show.
    • Rewards the same number of Good Masters in Meereen with the same agonizingly slow death that they gave one hundred and sixty three slave children. By nailing them to posts to die of dehydration and exposure. Yikes.
    • She has both a freedmen and a master executed; for defying her in the former and merely being suspect in founding the Harpy's Sons in the latter! Said master was later found out to be innocent of that particular crime and Dany has him seared to a crisp by Rhaegal before he and his brother rip the poor bastard in two!
    • When standing in judgement before all the gathered Dothraki khals, the warlords all decide to make her wish she was never born. Dany doesn't think much of this and annihilates them in an inferno which she, the little arsonist, starts personally... With her standing resolute at ground zero.
  • Big Bad: She tragically becomes this during the penultimate episode as she has finally had enough pain and misery and decides to incinerate all of King's Landing, no matter how many innocents still dwell within, making her the primary antagonist of the series finale.
  • Big Bad Slippage: Her entire character arc over the series is about this, but it mostly happens in the last two episodes.
  • Big Damn Heroes: In "Beyond the Wall", the wight hunters are surrounded until Daenerys dramatically swoops in with her dragons to save them.
  • Big Entrance: She makes her entrance to the Dragonpit meeting separate from the rest of her entourage on dragonback. Everyone is suitably awed/freaked out. Even Cersei looks jealous before snapping at her for being late. Cersei later remarks that Dany intentionally did this to clearly display her power.
  • Big Good: To her followers, since she is able to unite them and work together because they genuinely believe that she can make the world a better place and Tyrion fears that if she dies, everything will crumble to dust. By the end of Season 7, she evolved into this role for all of Westeros, since she leads the alliance of the living against the White Walkers with Jon deferring his crown to her and Cersei sitting back and waiting for her enemies to kill each other off just so she can remain on the throne.
  • Big Ol' Eyebrows: Her eyebrows are quite prominent and a good shade darker than her blond-silver-white hair, standing out strongly with an expressive life of their own. note 
  • Bilingual Backfire:
    • Kraznys mo Nakloz finds out the hard way that Daenerys could speak Valyrian all along.
    • Does it again with Khal Moro and his bloodriders, shocking them that their hostage is fluent in Dothraki.
  • Black Cloak: Most of her outfits in Season 7 are black cloaklike dresses with Shoulders of Doom.
  • Black-and-White Insanity:
    • She starts to slip into it during her conquest of Meereen, dealing out horrible punishments to the ruling class with no thought to how much or little the individuals involved were actually responsible for. Jorah is eventually able to talk her down, reminding her that he used to be a slaver himself.
    • More subtly, there is her mounting paranoia that has come in as a result of being betrayed and used all her life by Viserys, Illyrio Mopatis, Mirri Maz Duur, the Qartheen, and later the fact that Jorah was initially a spy which has hardened her stance. She still persisted at first in thinking of Robert Baratheon as The Usurper and remains in the dark about the kind of person her father truly was, believing that the people who deposed him were evil and without cause. By Season 5, however, she has come to be aware of her father's insanity, with Tyrion Lannister — now a trusted advisor — informing her of why Jamie killed her father. Now, Dany openly refers to her father as terrible.
    • In "The Bells", she states that anyone still in King's Landing is complicit in allowing Cersei's tyranny, and that she won't spare any of them if they get in her way of taking the city. This ignoring that a number of them have nowhere else to go, and that Daenerys's army is cutting off any exit paths for those who do want to leave. Jon tries to dissuade her from killing any the civilian population. They fail.
    • By "The Iron Throne", she comes to define "tyrant" as "any ruler who isn't me that will not submit to my authority".
  • Blood from the Mouth: After Jon stabs her in the heart, blood begins running out of her mouth and nose as she dies.
  • Blue Is Heroic: In Seasons 2 to 4, where Dany is at her most heroic as a liberator of slaves, she frequently wears the color blue.
  • Braids of Action: She gradually adopts this hairstyle while living among the Dothraki as she becomes stronger and more authoritative throughout Season 1. Most of Dany's hairstyles incorporate four or more braids in elaborate styles.
  • Broken Bird: Her abusive elder brother and burdens as a leader have hardened her otherwise idealistic world-view.
  • Broken Pedestal: Has a few of these over the course of the series.
    • Viserys gradually becomes this to her in Season 1. By the start of the series, he treats her badly and she mostly obeys him out of fear, but she does seem to have some affection for him and makes an effort to improve their relationship. However, her growing confidence and independence, as well as Viserys' worsening attitude, leads her to realize her brother is a selfish and pathetic jerk who never had a hope of taking back the Seven Kingdoms or holding them. After he drunkenly threatens to cut her unborn baby out of her, Daenerys has had enough of his abuse and doesn't intervene when Drogo kills him. Although she does seem to have some lingering affection and respect for Viserys for raising her (she names one of her dragons "Viserion" after him), she mostly regards him with disdain after his death.
    • Her father becomes this to her big time. She grew up believing that all the rumors about the "Mad King" were Malicious Slander spread by Aerys II's enemies and that he was a beloved ruler, mostly because this is what Viserys told her and she doesn’t know any better. Ser Barristan and Tyrion eventually tell her upfront that her father more than earned his name and was one of the worst kings Westeros ever had, horrifying her. By Season 7, she is absolutely determined not to become like her father, calling him an "evil man" and earnestly apologizes to Jon Snow for her father's crimes against House Stark.
    • Jorah Mormont, her oldest and closest friend/advisor, becomes this to her in Season 4, when she learns he spied on her for Westeros and never intended to come clean to her about it. She banishes him on pain of death, although her feelings for him are still quite complicated. It becomes a Rebuilt Pedestal by the end of Season 5 after he goes to greats efforts to re-earn her trust and saves her life, and she willingly takes him back into her service in Season 7.
    • She seems to have a milder case of this in regards to her brother Rhaegar. She grew up hearing about how he was a great warrior and is happy to learn from Ser Barristan that he was an honorable man who liked to sing and was generous to his friends and subjects. However, in Season 8 she remarks to Jon that despite all the nice things she had heard about her brother, he still kidnapped and raped Lyanna Stark. This prompts Jon to state that Rhaegar actually loved Lyanna and that they consensually eloped together, leading into The Reveal that he is actually Rhaegar and Lyanna's son.
    • Finally, in "The Bells", the pedestal that she was put on by Jon and Tyrion breaks dramatically, as rather than being the "Breaker of Chains" she mercilessly, knowingly and all but deliberately incinerates thousands of innocent people with dragonfire for no cogent reason whatsoever other than to hold them accountable for not rolling out the red carpet for her.
  • Cain and Abel: Despite her efforts, her relationship with Viserys breaks down completely due to his resentment of her for winning the Dothraki's love and respect, as well as her refusal to let him bully her anymore. Viserys eventually threatens her with a sword, saying he'll take her back from Drogo but leave behind their unborn baby unless he holds up his end of their bargain. Drogo is unimpressed to say the least and Daenerys finally gives up on Viserys, letting her husband execute him.
  • Cartwright Curse: Her beloved husband Khal Drogo dies, and so does her intended Hizdahr zo Loraq before the political marriage takes place. Her guard/friend Jorah Mormont also dies in her arms protecting her against White Walkers in battle.
  • Catchphrase: "Dracarys" — the Valyrian word for dragonfire — becomes her Pre-Asskicking One-Liner as it's the word she uses to order her dragons to Kill It with Fire.
  • The Chain of Harm: She eventually goes from an abused child to the woman who destroyed King's Landing.
  • The Chains of Commanding: She realizes that being a ruler and being a conqueror are not the same things. As Tyrion notes that being a ruler means that they have to be "terrible" and he is pleased that Daenerys is "the right kind of terrible", that is the kind "that prevents her people from being even more so." Dany doesn't like making compromises and concessions to the nobility of Slaver's Bay but she does so anyway, to build some kind of peace in Meereen and moderate multiple factions, and on returning to Westeros, she doesn't like dealing with the picky norms of Westerosi feudalism, namely their endless grudges, feuds, prejudices against Dothraki but decides to proceed slowly if only to prove I Am Not My Father.
  • Character Development:
    • Over the course of the first four episodes, she goes from being a terrified and submissive child bride to a more comfortable and confident young woman.
    • In "Second Sons", a nice Call-Back to her first-ever scene (Daenerys naked in a bath, but now assertive in the face of a likely assassin and with an imposing attitude, instead of resigned to being ordered around) underscores how in three seasons a scared young girl becomes a credible, mighty Queen.
    • Spends Seasons 4 and 5 compromising endlessly and attempting to play peacemaker in a land where even Machiavelli's Perfect Prince could do no better. After regaining some control over Drogon and showing the Dothraki khals a roaring, blistering good time; it's quite clear that the conqueror and rescuer she was born to be has resurfaced and her campaign has begun anew: what with Tyrion and Varys being her political advisers back in Meereen.
    • In the final two episodes, she turns into an Ax-Crazy Well-Intentioned Extremist, slaughtering thousands of innocent civilians and surrendering Lannister soldiers in King's Landing for daring to defy her at all, and then pledging to do the same to every city in Westeros that refuses to submit to her will, all in service of her goal to "break the wheel."
  • Chewing the Scenery: Due to the fact that most of her dialogue in High Valyrian consists of pompous speeches, her tone of voice when speaking the language is bizarrely loud, emphasized and stilted even in casual conversation.
  • Child Marriage Veto: Downplayed. Viserys has been Daenerys' guardian since the death of their parents and arranges her marriage to Drogo in exchange for an army. She's clearly unhappy about it, desperately pleading that she doesn't want to be Drogo's queen and just wants to go "home", but Viserys crudely makes it plain it he doesn't give a damn what she wants and that she should be 'grateful' she'll only have to put up with Drogo. Not wanting to incur her brother's wrath, Dany doesn't bring up her misgivings again. Ironically, the marriage works out much better for Dany than it does for Viserys.
  • The Chosen One: Possibly. Many followers of the Lord of Light believe she is the 'Prince That Was Promised', born "amidst fire and salt" to free the people from slavery and drive back the darkness with fire; as Missandei notes in Season Seven, the original prophecy could actually refer to a princess rather than a prince as is commonly interpreted, as the High Valyrian equivalent of 'prince' is actually a gender-neutral term. In Meereen, Tyrion and Varys encourage the view of Daenerys as messianic figure to increase support for her. Melisandre, meanwhile, seems to believe both Daenerys and Jon Snow could be the subject of the prophecy.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome:
    • Not only is taking Yunkai tactically difficult and completely unnecessary, its Masters actually offer Daenerys gold and ships to go Westeros in return for leaving them be. She refuses them simply because they run a slave city and she plans on freeing those slaves. On the other hand, freeing the slaves gives her the loyalty of her subjects (which is more than can be said of any of the other Westerosi leaders — except perhaps for the Greyjoys — after the Red Wedding), gives her some pretty good PR, and a source of ready volunteers, so perhaps it balances out.
    • Has the perfect chance to sack King's Landing with her forces after the death of Joffrey and the running down of the War of the Five Kings; all sides except for hers are exhausted and vulnerable. But Dany won't abandon her new subjects in the East until slavery is abolished. And there are pragmatist concerns from Jorah that the Kingdoms are so divided thanks to the civil conflict that a victory at the capital would be ultimately meaningless.
  • Cleavage Window: While in Mereenese garb.
  • Color-Coded Characters: In Season 5, she wears white almost constantly as she tries to embrace her role as Queen of Meereen. By Season 6, she's switched to black and red, the colors of her house, although while in the North in Seasons 7 and 8, she wears white with hints of black and red, which makes her stand out amongst the darker clothing of the Northerners and her own troops.
  • Commonality Connection:
    • With Tyrion in Season 5 as they discuss their abusive fathers.
    • Briefly discusses the loss of family members with Jon in Season 7 and later, what they need to do to lead and help people.
    • She tries to invoke this with Sansa Stark, pointing out that they're both female rulers doing a decent job despite what others think and that they both love and trust Jon Snow. Though they briefly reach common ground, they divide again over the issue of the North's independence and Sansa remains suspicious of her.
  • Composite Character: As of Season 5, her storyline has basically been combined with that of Young Griff — her presumed deceased nephew whom Varys was hoping to restore to power in the books, and whom Tyrion actually joined forces with. Much in the same way, many of the characters who are connected with her have been combined with characters from Griff's entourage.
  • Cool Chair: She finally gets a throne to sit on when she takes back Dragonstone in Season 7. Though it's not quite the Iron Throne, the Dragonstone chair is still quite cool to look at; it's carved from jagged black and silver rock, with a seat patterned to resemble a dragon's scales.
  • Cool Horse: She receives a beautiful White Mare (known as "the silver") as a wedding gift from Drogo, as a khaleesi should have a mount that befits her status. Getting her own horse is one of the few moments she's genuinely happy during her wedding. Sadly, the silver later dies of starvation in the Red Waste, devastating Daenerys. She gets a new white horse after conquering Astapor, although from Season 6 onwards, Drogon is her preferred mount.
  • Crowd Surfing: There are no rock concerts involved, but after liberating Yunkai from the Wise Masters, the freed slaves lift Daenerys up and begin carrying her across the crowd, chanting "Mhysa" (meaning mother).
  • Crucified Hero Shot: When she is nearly imprisoned by Pyat Pree in the House of the Undying.
  • Cunning Linguist: In addition to the Common Tongue, she is fluent in High Valyrian, as Kraznys finds out the hard way. She also becomes proficient in Dothraki, although in Season 3 Missandei has to correct her pronunciation due to her being out of practice.
  • Daddy's Little Villain: She ends up not so different from her father, although it's Played With in the sense that Dany believes her father to be evil and doesn't realize she's becoming like him.
  • Damsel out of Distress: In Season 2, she manages to escape from the House of the Undying more or less by herself, with only her baby dragons helping her out.
  • Dark Action Girl: Becomes this in "The Bells", using Drogon to destroy King's Landing in retaliation for Cersei's actions.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Almost her entire family were killed in a war before she was even born, while her mother died giving birth her. Since she was an infant, she has been on the run in Essos, sometimes reduced to begging to survive and living in constant fear assassins will come for her. The only family she has in all the world is Viserys, who becomes increasingly cruel and unhinged, physically and emotionally abusing her until she's left a timid doormat who tries to avoid setting him off.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Daenerys' main dragon is black and red, and she primarily wears ominous dark-colored outfits when she becomes queen. Yet despite a few slip-ups, Dany is one of the most genuinely heroic characters on the show, albeit someone with a dark reputation, since she liberated slaves in Essos, and conquered and toppled long-established states, and comes at the head of an invading army, while her father Mad King Aerys, and elder brother Rhaegar, are condemned as villains in Westeros. Likewise, as someone who brings dragons to Westeros, she is also associated with her great ancestor Aegon the Conqueror, and the dragons are a tool of great violence and subjugation, and remembered, by the likes of Renly, for burning whole villages. Subverted by the end of Season 8 when she burns down King's Landing, at which point she's wearing dark red.
  • Deadly Hug: She's on the receiving end of this in the series finale, getting stabbed by Jon while they're kissing.
  • Deadpan Snarker:
    • A rarity for her — but delicious every time they're delivered nonetheless.
    • Cranked up whenever she debates Tyrion.
  • Deconstructed Character Archetype: Of the underdog Chosen One fantasy protagonist. Daenerys starts out as an impoverished princess driven from her home, her only family being her abusive, unstable brother who is willing to sell her off to a warlord nearly twice her age for an army. Against all the odds, she manages to perform a miracle by bringing dragons back into the world, stands up to tyrants, frees slaves, wins victory after victory and gathers thousands of followers. Some factions of her homeland invite her to come to take the throne and restore peace and order after years of conflict. Unfortunately, not everyone is happy to see her or willing to immediately follow her. Bad advice or sheer bad luck (or a combination of the two) puts her in a worse position militarily speaking and costs her allies. And then she finds out there's someone else with a better claim to the throne and some of her allies start trying to push him to take the crown instead. Dany has spent so long being told that she is the rightful heir, that ruling the Seven Kingdoms and ending tyranny is her birthright and destiny, she begins convincing herself that everything she does is just if it's in service to that destiny... including executing anyone who won't submit to her rule and showing even enemy civilians no mercy. In the process of trying to create this better world, Dany becomes just as tyrannical as the people she opposes, if not potentially worse.
    Tyrion: [to Jon] Everywhere she goes evil men die and we cheer her for it. And she grows more powerful and more sure that she is good and right. She believes her destiny is to build a better world for everyone. She believed that, she truly believed it. Wouldn't you kill whoever stood between you and paradise?
  • Defiant Captive: Towards the khals and to a lesser extent the dosh khaleen in Season 6, holding her head high and refusing to be intimidated even as she's whipped, stripped naked and threatened with rape and other nasty things.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: In regards to Jon Snow. She starts out quite haughty and cool towards him, but is clearly attracted to him and gradually becomes much warmer and friendlier to him, to the point that she falls in love with him.
  • Denying the Dead Parent's Sins: She tends to dismiss the horror stories about her late father as being Malicious Slander spread by her enemies...until Ser Barristan bluntly tells her that the rumors are true. By the end of Season Five, she has accepted this and no longer defends the Mad King.
    Daenerys to Jon Snow: "My father was an evil man. On behalf of House Targaryen, I ask forgiveness for the crimes he committed against your family. And I ask you not to judge a daughter by the sins of her father."
  • Despair Event Horizon: She struggles with it late in the final season. Almost all of the people close to her heart end up dead or betraying her. After the Long Night, in which she loses her longtime friend Jorah, Dany witnesses her second "child", dragon Rhaegal, shot down from the sky when returning to Dragonstone and her best friend Missandei is captured and later beheaded by Cersei. The man she loves is unable to continue their sexual/romantic intimacy following The Reveal of their common ancestry, the revelation of which also involves that she isn't the heir to the throne she's been working toward all these years under that belief. Though Jon abdicates in favour of Dany's claim, his abdication is ignored and her own advisor, Varys, still tries to replace Dany with Jon. Becoming more and more isolated, she decides to embrace fear as her primary tool and abandons any hope or desire to inspire love from the people. All of this grief culminates in the ruinous decision she makes after King's Landing's surrender.
  • Determinator: As an interesting side effect of her Small Name, Big Ego. She will claim that Iron Throne, lack of a husband, army, or even food and shelter be damned.
  • Deuteragonist: Due to being on different a continent than the rest of the characters, her story is decidedly separate from the main narrative. This starts to fade away after she meets other core characters and gathers her alliance, becoming a contender for the lead character.
  • Didn't Think This Through: Her naivety, Black-and-White Morality and tendency to idealize led her to commit many mistakes and to be the only one unable from seeing the truth.
    • Because Daenerys had saved Mirri Maz Duur's life, she did not consider Mirri Maz Duur may have other intentions when she beseeches Mirri to save a wounded Khal Drogo's life. The Dothraki had destroyed the healer's village, slaughtered her people, and destroyed her home, giving Mirri a desire for vengeance. The end result was Daenerys losing her Dothraki husband Drogo and her unborn son, Rhaego.
    • After conquering Meereen, she ordered the crucifixion of 163 Great Masters as justice for the 163 slave children she found crucified by the masters on her way to the city. However, this increased the animosity of the nobility against her and made her existing uphill battle in trying to change the established society more difficult.
    • Her desire to abolish slavery overnight and through force. Ending slavery is a good and righteous endeavor, though Daenerys didn't really plan for the repercussions or how to rebuild and run a society formerly dependent on slave labour. Afterward, Daenerys not only had to deal with an economic crisis and angry nobility retaliating against her, but situations in which former slaves wanted to return to their former masters as they had no place else to go and no other way to survive.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: Dies in the arms of her love, Jon Snow, who weeps over her body after he assassinates her to save Westeros.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: During episode 5 of Season 8, she repays Cersei killing one of her dragons and her best friend while forcing her to watch, by burning down of all of Kings Landing with her last remaining dragon while ordering her men to slaughter every man, woman, and child they can find after the battle was over and Kings Landing surrendered.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Complete with a Creepy Monotone, and, if you're really unlucky, a polite half-smile.
  • The Dog Bites Back: For seventeen years she endured Viserys beating and belittling her. She finally has enough of his crap in "Cripples, Bastards and Broken Things"; when he insults her and slaps her face purely for inviting him to supper and giving him Dothraki gifts, she strikes him across the head with a belt, reminds him of just who she is and warns him that "the next time [he] raise[s] a hand to [her] will be the last time [he] has hands." Later in "A Golden Crown", she merely stands and coldly watches in silence as Drogo 'crowns' Viserys with molten gold after he threatened her and her unborn baby, doing nothing to try and save Viserys.
  • Dragon Rider: Daenerys desires to accomplish this, once her dragons are large enough, like her ancestors before her. This becomes more problematic than she anticipated. The larger her dragons grow, the more difficult they are to keep under control. In the episode "The Dance Of Dragons", she finally takes flight upon Drogon and becomes the first dragon rider in over a century. After being reunited with Drogon in Season 6, she's taken to using him as her primary mount, even riding him into combat to destroy the Masters' fleet besieging Meereen.
  • The Dreaded: She's earned this reputation amongst the Free Cities, Slaver's Bay and even Westeros by Season 4, what with her dragons, rapidly growing army and iron determination to achieve her goals. That being said, her followers and the slaves of Essos view her as their saviour who will give the masters what's coming to them and she remains one of the nicer characters on the show, with many of her more ruthless actions being motivated by a desire to end slavery and protect her people. At this point, even Tywin Lannister twigs that she poses a huge threat and starts working towards bringing her down. In Meereen, the masters even attempt to use her fearsome reputation to frighten the slaves off supporting her, though it ultimately doesn't work. In Season 7, the Northern lords are extremely reluctant to send their king to meet with her for similar reasons (and because of what other members of her family did to House Stark seventeen years ago) and Varys, Tyrion and Jon try to caution her about not letting this reputation define her too much, lest she be viewed as "more of the same."
    Tyrion: So here we sit. Two terrible children of two terrible fathers.
    Dany: I'm terrible?
    Tyrion: I've heard stories.
    Dany: Why did you travel to the far side of the world to meet somebody terrible?
    Tyrion: To see if you were the right kind of terrible.
  • Dreaming of Things to Come: Downplayed. She’s actually awake when this occurs, but when she enters the House of the Undying in Season 2 she has a vision of the Red Keep’s throne room, its roof torn apart and snow falling everywhere, which appears to foreshadow the series finale. As it turns out, it was foreshadowing her own death. From the books
  • Driven to Villainy: After the hardship, losses, and the Trauma Conga Line she went through in Seasons 7 and 8, she wins King Landing's surrender but snaps and razes the city to the ground.
  • Dude Magnet: Over the series, men are attracted to her including Drogo, Jorah, Xaro Xhoan Daxos, Daario Naharis, Hizdar Zo Loraq and Jon Snow. Euron Greyjoy's initial plans were to seduce her with the Iron Fleet. She even inspires a prostitute in Volantis to copy her look for more customers! Yara Greyjoy also exhibits the hots for her, and by season 8, Tyrion acknowledges he was also in love with her.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Once she arrives in the North in Season 8, Daenerys is displeased that the Northerners are not showing her proper respect for agreeing to come fight for them and are in fact quite pissed that Jon has bent the knee to her without consulting them.
  • Due to the Dead: Daenerys often ensures her fallen followers/loved ones receive a proper send-off.
    • After Drogo's death, Daenerys has a large funeral pyre built for him despite the sparse resources, as is customary for the Dothraki, although it's also to try and hatch her dragon eggs. She actually steps into the inferno herself and everyone believes she is killing herself to be with Drogo, but in actual fact, she's retrieving her dragons, with her Targaryen blood protecting her from the flames.
    • After her bloodrider Rakharo is killed by a rival khalasar and his decapitated head is sent back to her, Dany comforts Irri when she cries that without cremating his body his spirit cannot go to the Night Lands and promises to have a funeral pyre for him anyway.
    • Upon learning that the Great Masters crucified 163 slave children and put them on the roadside to intimidate her, she has her men remove their collars and bury them, but not before she has "[seen] each and every one of their faces". In one of her more ruthless moments, Dany has 163 Meereenese masters crucified in retaliation for the murdered children and intends to leave them there to rot; however after Hizdahr tells her that one of the executed was his father, who had in fact spoken against crucifying the children, she allows him to take his body for burial in the Temple of the Graces.
    • She orders White Rat, a murdered Unsullied, be buried in the Temple of the Graces with full honors.
    • Following Ser Barristan's death, Dany has his body laid out in the throne room of the Great Pyramid and keeps vigil over him.
    • After Jorah is killed in the Battle of Winterfell and his body is prepared for cremation alongside the other fallen, she gives his forehead one last kiss before personally lighting his funeral pyre.
  • Eloquent in My Native Tongue: Her Dothraki still needs a little work. "There are many dirts across the sea, like the dirt where I was born." As of Season 2, however, she's as fluent in Dothraki as she in the common tongue (which is spoken both in Westeros, the Free Cities, and Qarth).
    • Likewise, in Astapor, it looks like she'll have to learn Valyrian if she doesn't want to be constantly insulted by assholes like Kraznys mo Nakloz. Subverted however, as she purposefully waits until the control of the Unsullied has been given to her, before revealing that Valyrian is her mother tongue, ordering the Unsullied to ransack the city and finally, paying Kraznys back for his rudeness by having Drogon burn him alive.
  • Emotionless Girl: Earlier in Season 1, she shows shades of this, which makes sense, given that she spent most of her life with Viserys in constant fear of 'waking the dragon', making it an impressive indicator of her psychological fortitude that she isn't a perpetually flinching Extreme Doormat. She becomes much more assertive later on and is flamboyantly, openly emotional with her moods among her supporters.
  • The Empire: What her plan to break the chains of the entire world basically amounts to. Jon kills her before she can actually go through with it.
  • Enemy Mine: She is willing to make a truce with Cersei to fight the White Walkers. Although that doesn't work out, she grudgingly agrees to let Jaime fight with them and doesn't pursue a vendetta against him, seeing both the Night King and later Cersei as a more pressing concern.
  • Entitled Bitch: She seems to be under the impression that she has the moral high ground among all the Iron Throne's claimants simply because she's a Targaryen — completely overlooking (until Jorah corrects her) the fact that her ancestors took the Seven Kingdoms not because they had any right to them but because they could. And because they had dragons. Even after, she still has a bit of a self-centered streak about her — which seems to be a common flaw amongst her family.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: Daenerys experiences this quite a bit. It doesn't usually end well for the betrayer and has made her a bit paranoid about potential traitors in her midst.
    • In Season 1, she believed she could trust Mirri Maz Duur and went to a lot of effort protecting her from the Dothraki. When she learns Mirri used blood magic to kill her unborn baby and render her husband catatonic, she is shocked, exclaiming that she had saved her. Mirri retorts that Drogo's khalasar had destroyed her home and killed or enslaved her people and that life isn't really worth much "when all the rest is gone", so Dany didn’t really 'save' much. Dany has her burnt alive on Drogo's pyre and uses her death to hatch her dragon eggs.
    • In Season 2, she is betrayed by Xaro Xhoan Daxos, who had offered her shelter in Qarth and even asked her to marry him. When she declines, he has some of her followers slaughtered and steals her dragons to hand them over to the Warlocks. Worse still, Dany discovers that Doreah, one of her handmaidens and close friends, had helped him (in a deleted scene she also personally murdered Dany's other handmaiden, Irri), finding her in bed with Xaro after she gets her dragons back. In retaliation, she has them both sealed in Xaro's vault and then raids Xaro's home for valuables.
    • In Season 4, she finds out Jorah had once spied on her for Westeros and even knew of an attempt on her life. Although Jorah switched sides, served her faithfully and even foiled the assassin, she is understandably furious and distraught that he never told her (she finds out from Barristan Selmy after Tywin Lannister leaks the information to sow discord amongst Daenerys' allies). Jorah ultimately gets off lightly compared to some other people who have betrayed Dany, just getting banished. And then he eventually manages to re-earn her trust, gets forgiven and is welcomed back with open arms.
    • A milder case occurs in Season 5 with Mossador, a freed slave in Meereen who sits on Dany's small council. Dany clearly trusts and respects him and so is bitterly disappointed when he goes against her orders to kill a Son of the Harpy accused of murdering White Rat, even though Dany had promised the man a fair trial and it could further exacerbate the tensions between the freedmen and former slave masters. Dany decides to have Mossador publicly executed to make an example of him, which actually backfires on her when it causes a riot to break out in the streets.
    • In Season 8, Varys betrays Dany by plotting to replace her as the heir to the Iron Throne with Jon, despite Jon renouncing his claim. Also, Dany feels betrayed by Jon when, after she pleads with Jon to not tell his sisters about his true parentage, Jon insists to her that he owes them the truth and tells Sansa and Arya against her wishes, swearing Sansa and Arya to secrecy. However, Sansa subsequently reveals this to Tyrion, who reveals it to Varys, who then begins plotting against her. Daenerys — already going through a Heroic BSoD after losing half her army, her best friend, and dragon child Rhaegal — is unsurprised to learn she has been betrayed by Varys. Though still extremely hurt and angry, she lets Jon and Tyrion off the hook but has Varys burnt alive by dragonfire, which she had previously warned him she would do if ever betrayed her.
    • In "The Iron Throne", her lover/nephew Jon, one of the few people left that she genuinely trusts and her only remaining family. They share their Last Kiss before he betrays and kills her after he fails to dissuade her from continued killing. Although he was completely justified in doing so as it's done to save countless lives, she is clearly shocked and devastated when Jon fatally stabs her. Jon himself isn't too happy with the whole situation either, sobbing as he kills her and cradling her body in his arms.
  • Even Evil Can Be Loved: Tyrion and Jon both still love her very much and admire the woman she once was after the events of "The Bells", but they also know she's too far gone to be left in charge of the Seven Kingdoms. At Tyrion's urging, Jon assassinates her, though it grieves them both.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Following her Face–Heel Turn, she is still A Mother to Her Men and rewards Grey Worm's loyalty and long service to her by making him her Master of Arms. She also makes it very clear she still loves Jon Snow, wanting him to rule with her.
  • Everyone Loves Blondes: She has platinum or silver-blonde hair and is famed for her great beauty, also being one of the show's most prominent Ms. Fanservice characters. Some of the Dothraki even consider her hair color, which is unusual among their people, to be a big factor in her attractiveness because it's exotic.
  • Evil Counterpart:
    • Very subtle, but she has one in Joffrey. Aside from having their own reasons for being claimants to the throne, both are from houses hailed for their good looks, are products of inbreeding, and have very visible blood lust. Season 6 and Season 7 makes Cersei out to be Dany's. The former is every bit the Distaff Counterpart of the Mad King that Dany is accused or feared of being.
    • She proves herself to be one to Stannis of all people. Both committed evil acts out of their obsession with their rightful claims to the throne, but even Stannis at his worst had lines he wouldn't cross.
  • Eviler than Thou: Except for maybe the Night King, she proves herself far worse and racks up a higher body count than any previous villain such as Cersei, Joffrey, and Aerys.
  • Evil Is Hammy: After her Face–Heel Turn, she retains her hamminess, giving a big dramatic speech to her minions about how she wants to Take Over the World.
  • Evil Overlord: Becomes this when she takes the Iron Throne, albeit of the Well-Intentioned Extremist variety. She is a frankly terrifying figure, leading an army of elite Unsullied and Dothraki warriors (as well as Northmen pledged to her by Jon Snow) who obey her without question and possessing one of the last dragons in existence, giving her a big advantage. She makes short work of King's Landing's defences, then lays waste to the city even after they surrender. In the next episode, she has grand plans to Take Over the World to 'liberate' people everywhere.
  • The Exile: From birth, her family had already been effectively ousted from power and were residing on Dragonstone, then she and her brother were smuggled across the narrow sea to Braavos; where they spent a few years in relative safety before their guardian died of old age. Thus, Viserys had to drag her to nearly all nine of the Free Cities as a pair of orphaned runaways trying to gather some modicum of support. In Winter is Coming, the first episode of the series, Dany is still baffled that Illyrio has let them stay in his manse as guests for almost a year; inferring just how much the pair had to move.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Upon being surrounded by the Sons of the Harpy in the Great Pit of Daznak, she simply takes Missandei's hand and calmly closes her eyes. Luckily, that's when Drogon shows up.
  • Face–Heel Turn: In the end, she burns down King’s Landing after the city has surrendered, killing adults and children alike.
  • Face of an Angel, Mind of a Demon: Even after her Face–Heel Turn, she remains as beautiful as ever and looks like an angel. There's even a scene in "The Iron Throne" where she's walking in front of Drogon with his wings raised, giving the impression she too has a pair of draconic wings, which gives off Fallen Angel vibes.
  • Fallen Heroine: Throughout the seasons we have seen her abolish slavery and act towards the good of the people, even creating and maintaining a fair justice system in Essos. However, by the time the penultimate episode of "The Bells" rolls around, the various losses that she has suffered have finally taken their toll on her, as she opts to burn King's Landing to the ground after the Lannister forces surrendered, killing thousands of innocents... And in the finale, she reveals that she has plans to do the same for anyone who won't submit to her rule.
  • Fascinating Eyebrow: At times, her eyebrows express what she really feels.
  • Fatal Flaw: Has two major ones:
    • Idealism. While Daenerys is nowhere near as arrogant and horrible as her brother and is, in fact, a sweet and genuinely kind-hearted young woman who wished for the end of slavery, she is also very prone to going off on one about her ideals and why everyone should do what she says for what she believes to be for the Greater Good — even when taking this course of action would make getting it less likely.
    • Pride is also apparent in Season 2, where she threatens to burn down Qarth (a task for which her Dragons are way too young yet to actually do) if she isn't allowed inside, and rages against the Spice King when he refuses to give her ships to return to Westeros. It earns her an "The Reason You Suck" Speech from said Spice King. Although she eventually managed to grow into her own hype, her pride (manifesting alternatively as Protagonist-Centered Morality and Moral Myopia) is still very much there and has earned her, more than once, warnings about turning out like her father.
  • The Fettered: An interesting example. Daenerys's personality is actually more suited to be The Unfettered, particularly when things aren't going her way. But she is aware of this, and aware it's a problem. So she actively cultivates a fettered personality and surrounds herself with advisors who are also The Fettered to keep her darker tendencies in check. One reason she started to like Jon Snow is because he advised her not what to do, but what would be crossing the line.
  • Fetus Terrible: Played with. Dany and Drogo's child is prophesied to become 'The Stallion Who Mounts the World.' After Dany resorts to blood magic to save her dying husband, something happens in her womb, and the child is stillborn with reptilian features and wings... at least according to Mirri Maz Duur.
  • Fighting for a Homeland: Since her birth during a storm on Dragonstone island (hence her name Stormborn), Dany has never really known a real home, the only time she finds a community to fit in is with the Dothraki who are nomadic by nature and choice. She has never visited Westeros and aside from a vision in the House of the Undying has never seen the Iron Throne her father sat on. On arriving at Dragonstone she laments that somehow the castle doesn't feel like home either for her.
  • Final Boss: With the death of Cersei in the penultimate episode and her Jumping Off the Slippery Slope she becomes the final main villain in the series.
  • Flight of Romance: With Jon in Season 8, both of them flying on her dragons up to the mountains where they share a kiss.
  • Foil:
    • To Sansa. Both were victims of abuse, although Sansa was only abused by Joffrey for a two-year time period and then by Ramsey while Daenerys endured abuse from her brother for most of her life. Daenerys started out as very shy and meek, but due to having a much harder life definitely less naive than Sansa. However, Daenerys was able to make the best of her bad situation and turn things to her advantage, eventually working her way up to raising a powerful army and conquering several cities, while Sansa was only able to rely on herself to survive the horrors in King's Landing with no aid of dragons or armies. Daenerys's success can largely be attributed to being toughened up from the hardships she's faced since birth, whereas Sansa led a privileged and sheltered life and was completely unprepared to cope with her life taking a turn for the worse.
    • Like Jon Snow, she went from being someone who nearly all of society has written off to becoming the heir and ruler of her dynasty. Both of them have reputations for being a Living Legend and as per Melisandre, are both possible contenders for being "The Prince Who Was Promised", and much like how Dany wants to incorporate outsiders and foreigners into Westeros, Jon brought the wildlings into his kingdom. In Season 7, Tyrion and Davos make it even more explicit when they mediate a tense meeting by helping them see their commonalities: both rule because they were chosen by their subjects, not through any birthright, and both are beloved because of their strong character and concern for the common people. However, they go about it in opposite ways: Jon is a grubby Humble Hero who's just trying to do the right thing and doesn't have much in the way of ambition or plans, while Daenerys is a charismatic visionary whose every move is meant to get her closer to realising her dream of taking her rightful throne and ruling justly. It's hilariously demonstrated in their first meeting, where Missandei introduces Dany by her long, long list of bombastic titles, after which Davos sheepishly offers, "this is Jon Snow. He's King in the North."
    • To Cersei Lannister. Both are queens from old Great Houses. Cersei grew up a privileged Spoiled Brat who relies on her family name, titles and wealth to get what she wants, while Daenerys grew up an Impoverished Patrician who became a Self-Made Woman after learning the hard way that her family name means little without a throne and wealth to back it up. Cersei and Dany both had a son who died shortly before or after birth, before having three more children through unconventional means; Cersei's three children were secretly fathered by her twin brother, while Dany hatched and adopted three dragons. Both have incestuous relationships; Cersei knowingly has sex with her brother and cousin, while Dany's brother seems to have a one-sided attraction to her and she expected to marry him, and she later unwittingly sleeps with her nephew. Both Dany and Cersei are famed for their great beauty. Both had Arranged Marriages; Cersei's ended up being a miserable failure, while Dany's ended up closer to a Perfectly Arranged Marriage. Both kill their husbands; Cersei has Robert murdered out of hatred and to protect herself and her children, while Dany mercy kills Drogo after he's left an Empty Shell. Cersei fights her new betrothal to Loras every step of the way, while Dany grudgingly arranges her betrothal to Hizdahr for the good of Meereen. Cersei is an older woman (late thirties at the start) and quite cynical and bitter, while Dany is still youthful (around seventeen at the start) and is more naive and idealistic. Cersei doesn't care about the commoners (or anyone outside her immediate family) and thinks they're all beneath her, while Dany is shown to empathize with the poor and 7 and tries to improve things for them; Cersei is hated by her people, while many of Dany's subjects practically worship her. Both end up going Ax-Crazy and becoming tyrants who kill innocent civilians to seize control, but their reasoning is slightly different; Cersei desires power for its own sake and simply isn't concerned about how she gets it, while Dany deludes herself into believing this is the only way to create a better, more just world. Cersei admires her father and tries to emulate him, only to fail miserably, while Dany thinks of her father as evil and tries her best not to be like him, but tragically does end up similar to him.
    • She and Tyrion find something in common, being descendants of two families who hate each other, "two terrible children of two terrible fathers", who are also despised by their older siblings for "killing" their mothers.
  • Forced to Watch: She can only watch helplessly as Cersei has Missandei beheaded.
  • Foreshadowing: Fire cannot kill a dragon. In her first scene, she walks straight into a bath that her maid tells her is too hot without flinching. From the books...
  • Foreign Fanservice: Doreah suggests her exotic appeal is why Drogo chose Daenerys as his wife.
  • Foreign Ruling Class:
    • She becomes this to the cities of Slaver's Blay (which are the remnants of the Ghiscari Empire). While she is welcomed with open arms by most of the slave population because she puts an end to slavery, some of the nobility are a lot less enthusiastic, feeling she has no respect for their traditions; in addition to stamping out slavery, Daenerys also bans the fighting pits and only reluctantly agrees to open them again at Hizdahr's behest. This causes a fair bit of tension in the Meereen arc.
    • Interestingly enough, Dany is viewed as being a potential example of this to Westeros. In fact, in Season 7, Randyll Tarly says he'd rather be ruled by Cersei Lannister than Dany, because at least Cersei was born and raised in Westeros, rather than being a "foreign invader; one with no ties to this land" (although Daenerys was technically born on Dragonstone and forced to flee as an infant).
    • Daenerys also ends up becoming ruler of all the Dothraki in late Season 6, which they accept pretty readily because they believe in Asskicking Leads to Leadership; Dany killed all the other khals practically singlehandedly, leaving her few rivals, and has a sizable army and three dragons at her back, so she is quite easily the strongest among them. She incorporates their warriors in her conquest of Westeros, which in Randyll's opinion is just another point against her.
  • Foreseeing My Death: It turns out the vision she had in the House of the Undying, way back in Season 2, was this. The scene leading up to her death at Jon Snow's hands is very similar to her vision. However, she herself did not actually understand the true meaning of the vision at the time.
  • Fratricide: It's more a case of Murder by Inaction, but Daenerys does nothing to intervene when Drogo kills her brother Viserys by pouring molten gold over his head, in spite of Viserys pleading with her. To be fair to her, she had spent over a decade being abused and browbeaten by Viserys and just moments before he'd been threatening to cut her baby from her womb with a sword.
  • Freudian Excuse: Being the product of generations of inbreeding, childhood abuse and being essentially sold into slavery and raped as a teenager ultimately takes its toll on her mental health and contributes to her Face–Heel Turn in Season 8. Her entire life she's been surrounded by people who use fear and violence to get what they want and she herself has often been on the receiving end of this. Combined with the fact that trying to choose more tempered and diplomatic paths has been known to backfire on her, it's not all that surprising she eventually decides Violence Really Is the Answer too.
  • Friend to All Children: Considering that her own child died in stillbirth, she feels this greatly. When she takes command of the Unsullied, she specifically orders them not to harm any children. Her horror at Drogon's actions at the end of Season 4, burning a goat-herder's daughter is even more acute as a result. Unable to find Drogon, Daenerys locks her other two dragons away in an effort to prevent any more children from being killed.
  • Friendly Address Privileges: In Season 7, she's initially uncomfortable with Jon calling her "Dany", as only her late brother ever called her that and no one else since. However, in Season 8, he calls her Dany a number of times and she doesn't seem to mind.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: At the start of Season 2, Dany is the leader of only a few dozen ex-slaves, most of which are women, old men, and children; with one knight under her command. By halfway through Season 3, she has an army, dragons old enough to kill, and is feared by the cities of Essos. By the end of Season 6, she is queen of Meereen and has the largest forces by far, ready to claim the Iron Throne. The "nightmare" part is fully cemented when she torches King's Landing with Drogon in Season 8.
  • Frontline General: Downplayed. She herself never does any actual fighting, but she's the only one who can control her dragons, and if she wants to commit them in battle she has to actual mount Drogon, and fly into a battle herself.

  • Generation Xerox:
    • Just like her father, whom she had struggled for years not to be like, she starts out as a bright and promising young ruler, only to eventually go insane and kill enemies and innocents alike with fire. They both also have a Lannister as their Hand of the King/Queen whom they grow increasingly alienated from, and both are stabbed to death by someone they trusted in front of the Iron Throne, in an attempt to stop their madness from harming anyone else.
    • Both she and Aegon the Conqueror, her Famous Ancestor, were driven from her ancestral homelands (Aegon's family fled Valyria before the Doom that destroyed it; Daenerys left Westeros after her family was all but wiped out in Robert's Rebellion). Both possessed three of the only dragons left in the world and rode the largest of these dragons into battle note  Both were rulers and conquerors at a young age. Both set out to conquer Westeros and both were willingly knelt to by a King in the North. Both had two siblings with names beginning with "Rhae" and "Vis" (Rhaenys and Visenya, Rhaegar and Viserys). However, Aegon is the first Targaryen monarch, the one who built King's Landing and the Red Keep and forged the Iron Throne with Balerion while Dany is the last Targaryen monarch and destroys both the city and castle Aegon built, while Drogon melts the Iron Throne after her death.
  • Glass Cannon: While riding her dragons, she is a person of mass destruction, capable of sinking an entire fleet of ships by herself and managing to deal a massive blow against a good third of the Lannister army during the Battle of the Goldroad. Having said that, outside of her immunity to fire, Daenerys is still as vulnerable as any normal human being to blades and arrows. When she lands with Drogon on the ground to remove a scorpion bolt from him, she is practically defenseless to Jaime's do-or-die charge and she likely would have been run through if Drogon hadn't interposed himself between them. In the end, after she razes a surrendered King's Landing from Drogon's back and declares to take the rest of the world with fire and blood, she dies from a single knife wound when she is assassinated by Jon Snow and stunned, she quickly dies in his arms.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!:
    • When Barristan is murdered, she shows a hint of this when avenging him. She has a head of a Meereenese family burnt alive and fed to her dragons to intimidate his peers, on the off-chance that they lead the Sons of the Harpy. In this, she acts similar to her father the Mad King. They Foreshadow her eventual Face–Heel Turn.
    • In Season 8, after much loss and grief, Dany burns King's Landing and its people to the ground.
  • Going Native: With the Dothraki, up until the point they start indulging in Rape, Pillage, and Burn; she is far less willing to assimilate into Qarth and Slaver's Bay, however.
  • Good Girl Gone Bad: While she always had a ruthless streak, Daenerys was a fundamentally compassionate and heroic young woman for the majority of the series, aspiring to end slavery and create a better society for the smallfolk; she's also far kinder and more idealistic compared to most characters in the setting. However, the Trauma Conga Line she goes through in the final season snaps her sanity and turns her into a merciless tyrant who tries to justify mass murder as being 'necessary' to create her vision of a "good world".
  • Good Is Not Soft: A very big believer in this. And something she expects from people she hires into her service:
    Sansa Stark: Tyrion is a good man. He was never anything but decent towards me.
    Queen Daenerys: I didn't ask him to be my Hand simply because he was good. I asked him to be my Hand because he was good, and intelligent, and ruthless when he had to be.
  • Graceful Ladies Like Purple: While living in Pentos and at her wedding, she wears demure pale lavender gowns, reflecting her Shrinking Violet personality as an abuse victim and refugee. As she becomes more confident and assertive, she ditches her lavender silks for more practical Dothraki garb.
  • Greater-Scope Villain:
    • Is seen this way by much of Westeros, including Robert and, of all people, Joffrey, being exiled to Essos but preparing to return and claim the throne. She isn't a major concern to them anymore due to the civil war and her lack of power at the start of the series, but is steadily becoming a more dangerous threat.
    • In Season 2, while preparing the Siege of King's Landing, Varys tells a skeptical Tyrion about the fact that she has dragons and how the present Civil War in Westeros is small potatoes compared to what will happen when she gets here. In Season 4, Tywin Lannister is willing to engage in an alliance with the Martells against the Targaryens and improvises a gambit to halt Daenerys's tracks in Meereen: reveal Jorah's former service as a spy on Varys' payroll. Of course, Varys ultimately decides to cast his lot with Daenerys anyway and he and Tyrion serve as her advisors.
  • Grew a Spine: And what a spine. At the beginning of the series, she is a rather meek girl who does whatever Viserys tells her out of fear of "waking the dragon". However, she gradually starts to become more confident and assertive, making her own decisions and sticking to them and standing up to Viserys for possibly the first time in her life. She's actually stunned at herself when Viserys tries to abuse her and she shoves him away. By late Season 2/early Season 3, she doesn't take crap from anyone.
  • Guile Heroine: She often has to rely on her wits to survive, as she's not much of a fighter (until Drogon is big enough for her ride and she can figure out how to control him). Notable examples include tricking Kraznys into giving her all the Unsullied then ordering them to kill the Masters and seize control of Astapor, taking out the Dothraki khals using only some braziers and a piece of wood blocking the door, and putting her Dothraki and dragons to good use in battle (especially in "The Spoils of War" against the Lannister-Tarly army).
  • Hair Color Dissonance: Like in the books, Daenerys (like most Targaryens) has silver hair. Due to the show's use of more realistic hair colors for all characters, her hair color is shown as light platinum blonde.
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Her silvernote -blonde hair is one of her and her House's most iconic traits, and despite her ups and downs, she's one of the most fundamentally good-hearted and caring characters on the show. Subverted towards the end of the series, when she becomes a Fallen Heroine instead.
  • Heartbroken Badass:
    • Though she often keeps it to herself, it's clear when she speaks of her late husband that she still misses Drogo (and their son) very much.
    • She is also clearly heartbroken when she learns of Jorah's deception and must banish him. Later, when Jorah returns to her and she realizes he must leave again in order to find a cure for his greyscale and she is saddened once again.
    • The deaths of Viserion, Jorah, Rhaegal and Missandei in quick succession breaks her heart so badly it contributes to her Sanity Slippage and Face–Heel Turn.
  • Her Heart Will Go On: After her First Love Drogo dies at the end of Season 1. Although she misses him, she doesn't dwell on her grief and eventually enters a relationship with Daario Naharis, before later falling in love with Jon Snow.
  • Heroic BSoD:
    • Has a minor, but critical, one after taking Meereen, when she's informed that the slavers have retaken Yunkai and Astapor has been taken by someone even worse than the Masters. It's implied that if her successes in Slaver's Bay hadn't evaporated, she might have sailed straight for King's Landing right then. Instead, she decides to stay in Meereen and learn how to be a Queen.
    Daenerys: How can I rule seven kingdoms if I can't control Slaver's Bay? Why should anyone trust me? Why should anyone follow me?
    • She has a brief one in Season 7 after the mission beyond the Wall goes horribly wrong. Although she manages to rescue the survivors and help retrieve a wight, one of her beloved dragons, Viserion, is killed in the process and Jon nearly dies too; she also sees the army of the dead for herself and realises just what they're up against. In a moment of vulnerability she hasn't really displayed since arriving in Westeros, Dany breaks down in tears at Jon's bedside.
    • In "The Last of the Starks", after watching Missandei being killed right in front of her (and having previously lost Jorah and Rhaegal not too long ago), she stands there horrified before walking away with an expression of barely-contained fury. She's still in the middle of it at the beginning of "The Bells", shutting herself in her chambers and barely eating and sleeping. When Tyrion comes to talk to her, she sounds utterly defeated and isn't all that surprised to learn Varys has been plotting behind her back.
  • High-Class Gloves: Upon arriving in Westeros, she often wears leather gloves because of the cold (they also likely prevent her hands from being grazed when she rides Drogon).
  • The High Queen: What she aspires to, and what Jorah believes she could be. However, she has a more nuanced understanding over time. She tells Tyrion that if she returns to Westeros she wants to change and abolish the feudal power and that she wants to revise the system in favour of the poor rather than the aristocrats. She also wants to break from her family as well, seeing them as being just as bad as the other houses.
    Daenerys: Lannister. Targaryen. Baratheon. Stark. Tyrell. They’re all just spokes on a wheel. This one’s on top, then that one’s on top, and on and on it spins, crushing those on the ground.
    Tyrion: It's a beautiful dream, stopping the wheel. You're not the first person who's ever dreamt it.
    Daenerys: I'm not going to stop the wheel. I'm going to break the wheel.
  • History Repeats: Played with. Her return to Westeros, as it unfolded, is a massive Call-Back to her ancestral history, but its conclusion is significantly different:
    • The Conquest involved her in direct combat with the Houses of the Reach and the Westerlands, and accepting the fealty of the North which seeks survival, much like Aegon the Conqueror did.
    • While she eventually tried to consolidate her power on the road to King's Landing, her foreign-ness from the Westerosi and key episodes of betrayal eventually drove her to alienate not only the nobility, but also the common folk—much as the other would-be Queen Regnant, Rhaenyra, ended up doing.
    • Image-wise, her rallying the other noble houses against a "mad" regent identified with wildfire usage (i.e. Cersei) is an inversion of Robert's Rebellion, the very event that drove her away from Westeros. However, much like that Rebellion's Sack of King's Landing, she also became complicit with the murder of thousands of civilians when she rained dragonfire on them.
    • Ultimately, her limited experience and inability to consolidate her conquest well earned her the same fate of Dorne's Conqueror, Daeron the Young Dragon: her conquest resisted/negatively received and she ended up assassinated.
    • Finally, as a sort of ironic Book Ends: whereas Aegon the Conqueror's dragon Balerion forged the Iron Throne, Drogon would eventually melt down the Iron Throne after Daenerys died.
  • The Homeward Journey: She spent most of her life in Essos and the first six seasons of the show trying to achieve this. She finally lands on Dragonstone, her ancestral home and the island of her birth, in Season 7.
  • Horrible Judge of Character: At times in Season 1, particularly when it comes to Mirri Maz Duur. Most of this is due to being quite young and naive. After she takes Mirri as her slave to save her from being raped and killed and stands up for her to the Dothraki who accuse her of being a witch, she trusts Mirri enough to let her treat Drogo's wound. She also trusts her to perform a blood magic ritual to save Drogo when the wound is infected. It never occurred to her that Mirri couldn't give a toss about Daenerys 'saving' her and used her trust as an opportunity to kill her unborn child and render Drogo an Empty Shell in revenge for her village's destruction. Daenerys is utterly dismayed when she learns of Mirri's betrayal and subsequently becomes more cautious about who she trusts.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: With Drogo and Daario who are both at least six feet tall. Averted with Jon Snow however, who is not as tall as Drogo and Darrio, standing several inches taller than Daenerys.
  • Hypocrite:
    • Upon meeting Jon Snow, she tries to get him to bend the knee by citing the oath his ancestors made. The moment he replies with the atrocities her father committed, she asks him not to judge her by her father's sins. It's such a blatant show of hypocrisy that even Jon Snow himself hangs a lampshade on it immediately afterwards.
    • She does this again in "Knight of the Seven Kingdoms", angrily reaming out Jaime for murdering Aerys, despite the fact that Dany has been told by a member of Aerys' own Kingsguard what a horrible person the Mad King was and in the previous episode, she admitted to Samwell Tarly that she personally burnt his father and brother alive when they wouldn't bend the knee to her, which is for far more selfish reasons than ending the reign of an insane tyrant. (Even if Daenerys doesn't know Jaime's exact reasons for Kingslaying, it cannot be argued that Aerys was a tyrant and she is well aware of this by this point.) On the other hand, she also seems concerned that Jaime could pose a threat to her personally because of his history with her family and backstabbing reputation. Jaime also has actually tried to kill her, charging at her with a spear during the Battle of the Goldroad and would likely have killed her if Drogon hadn't intervened.
    • Dany claims that she has the right to the throne of Westeros because she is the rightful heir to the Targaryen dynasty, characterizing the Baratheon dynasty as illegitimate "usurpers." But when she learns that Jon is actually the trueborn son of Rhaegar, Aerys's firstborn issue, and as such, Jon is actually the rightful Targaryen heir, Dany fears people will press Jon's claim against her lesser one. When Jon wants to be truthful with his family about his parentage, Dany urges Jon to stay silent for the sake of her claim.
    • Throughout the series, she makes grandiose statements about how she's going to "break the wheel" and liberate her kingdom from tyranny. In "The Iron Throne", she uses the same language in the context of, for all intents and purposes, taking over Westeros and "liberating" people from other rulers, making it clear that she's not concerned with breaking the wheel so much as making sure that it's locked into place with her on the Iron Throne. It's implied that the trauma she faced over the course of the final two seasons warped her worldview, but that vision stands in stark contrast to everything she claimed to stand for.
  • I Am Very British: Speaks Common with a very posh, very pleasant RP accent.
  • Iconic Outfit: More than a few:
    • Her Dothraki garb which she wears from episode three onwards and which she wears again for most of Season 6.
    • The blue travelling outfit, which she wears during her conquest of Slaver's Bay and early rule is the outfit she wears for most of her appearances, and is more or less the main appearance used in promotion and fan-art.
    • The several white dresses she wears while ruling Meereen, along with the ornate dragon necklace she wears at the opening of Daznak's Pit, is also quite well known, but her last symbol of supposed purity power is covered in soot and rain in the following episodes, turning it sky blue.
    • Her dark, draconic dresses in Season 7 have become very recognizable, along with the winter dress she wears when she rescues Jon Snow and co. beyond the Wall.
  • Idiot Ball: "Dany kind of forgot about the Iron Fleet..." As a consequence of her conveniently forgetting them in Season 8, even though Varys had reminded her and several other people they were a threat in the same episode, Euron is able to sneak attack her as she returns to Dragonstone, killing Rhaegal, capturing Missandei (who is then executed) and destroying a portion of Dany's fleet. This ends up being one of the catalysts for her downward spiral into madness and mass murder in the following episode.
  • I Am Not My Father: Says this word-for-word in 'The House of Black and White'. Dany seems genuinely disturbed as Ser Barristan describes the atrocities of the Mad King. This trope is a key element in Tyrion throwing his support behind her. She also stuns Jon Snow when she openly declares that her father was an evil man.
  • I Fight for the Strongest Side!: Why nearly fifty thousand barbarian warriors follow her. The Dothraki only fear three things. The poison saltwater, lightning storm fires on the Great Grass Sea and of course by extension; dragons. Dany is not only able to walk through the biggest threat to their way of life; which causes all their warriors and shamans to kowtow in reverence. But is topped even further when her mount is revealed to be the largest dragon left in existence, effectively making Dany the greatest rider who ever lived in their history. They follow her easily over the sea after all that and obey her without question.
  • Ignored Epiphany: Despite Daenerys realizing that her brother was a fool for believing the people of Westeros would welcome him and, in 4x05, learning that conquest is far easier than ruling and she must show the people why she would be a queen they'd want, Daenerys seems to lose these lessons upon her arrival in Westeros and appears to primarily rely on her name and claim. Jorah and Tyrion after warn her that she needs some nobility and her name would not be enough to win them over. At first, Daenerys seems to understand what her advisors told her, yet she never stopped believing that once she reached Westeros, she would have finally felt at home and Westerosi would welcome her with open arms[[spoiler:, and when neither one nor the other thing happen, she reacts as if it was something completely unforeseen.
  • I Have Boobs, You Must Obey!:
    • Invoked to a certain extent in Season 1. Daenerys asks her handmaiden Doreah, a Sex Slave from Lys, to teach her how to please a man in the bedroom so she can gain some influence over Drogo. Subsequently, they start to develop an actual relationship and Drogo comes to greatly respect Dany, to the point that he'll do almost anything for her, including invade Westeros and let her keep captured women as slaves so they won't be raped, even though it pisses off some of his men.
    • She unintentionally does this in Season 3; Daario is so enchanted by her beauty he kills his captains, takes over the Second Sons and pledges to fight for her.
    • Subverted in Season 7; Jon Snow is caught staring at her "good heart" but is able to keep a level head and refuses to bend the knee to her right away. In fact, he's able to charm her into agreeing to help fight the dead.
    • In Season 8, some of the Northerners suspect this is the real reason Jon bent the knee to Dany, though he tries to insist it's because he believes she'll be a good ruler. Varys also believes that Dany would "bend [Jon] to her will" even if they got married.
  • I Just Want to Be Loved: Deep down, what Daenerys has always wanted is to be loved and accepted, both on a familial/friendship level and on a wider level as a ruler. This is very understandable, considering the only family she had growing up was Viserys, whose love for her was twisted by his cruel nature. This longing only intensifies after her husband and baby die late in Season 1. In Season 8, she seems to cross the Despair Event Horizon after not only losing or being betrayed by everyone she loves, but realizing that the majority of people in Westeros feel only fear towards her.
  • I Love You Because I Can't Control You: Strongly implied to be the case with Jon Snow. In her marriage to Drogo, she had him wrapped around her little finger, while her lover Daario was her subordinate who pledged his service and heart to her. In contrast, Jon refuses to bend the knee to her, talks back to her and straight-up defies her on a number of occasions. Though annoyed by it, she's also quietly impressed by his steadfastness and becomes more attracted to him by the minute.
  • Incest-ant Admirer: After discovering that her lover Jon Snow is, in fact, her nephew Aegon Targaryen, she's okay with their Surprise Incest and wants to continue their relationship so long as he does not dispute her claim to the throne. However, Jon isn't so comfortable with their Surprise Incest and though he still loves her and initially gives into their make-out sessions, he halts their sexual relationship due to their blood relationship.
    David Benioff: There's a moment when [Dany and Jon are] kissing, and it seems like things are kind of getting back to where they were, but... it's almost as if [Jon] remembers all of a sudden what [Dany] really is. It's tense for him. For her, she grew up hearing all these stories about how their ancestors who were related to each other were also lovers, and it doesn't seem that strange to her. For him, it is a strange thing.
  • Informed Attractiveness: Nearly every man she meets comments on how beautiful she is. While Emilia Clarke is far from ugly, Daenerys is supposed to be an otherworldly beauty.
  • The Ingenue: In Season 1. Though she's not nearly as naive and innocent as Sansa due to her hard upbringing, Dany is still quite unworldly and overly-idealistic with a shy, childlike demeanour. She blindly believes what Viserys and Illyrio tell her about the world, or at least doesn't dare contradict her brother out of fear of angering him. Meeting the bluntly honest Ser Jorah and her time with the Dothraki strips away much of her innocence; she develops a more nuanced understanding and a thicker skin, but retains her idealism.
  • Instant Expert: Played with. Like her older brother Rhaegar, Dany picks things up very quickly - she becomes an expert horse rider, fluent in the Dothraki language, and talented at sex in just a few months. She figures out how to raise, train, and ride dragons based only off of legends. She learns the fundamentals of rulership fairly quickly. However, none of these things are accomplished without great effort and a number of mistakes.
  • It Runs in the Family: It is said that the gods flip a coin every time a Targaryan is born to decide their sanity. Dany seems to be fully sane until the deaths of one of her dragons and her best friend and confidant drive her over the edge. She proceeds to raze King's Landing to the ground, despite them already having surrendered.
  • I Warned You: She told Varys that if he ever betrayed her while in her service, she would execute him immediately. Varys learns this at first hand when his plot to undermine her fails and Dany then executes him.
  • Imperiled in Pregnancy: Daenerys doesn't have the most peaceful of pregnancies. Viserys tries to strike her, though she's able to fight back. He later gets wasted, points a sword at her and threatens to cut her baby out of her. It doesn't end well for Viserys. Next, a wineseller attempts to poison her on the orders of Robert Baratheon but is foiled by Jorah and her guards. Finally, Daenerys is thrown to the ground and injured by Drogo's bloodriders when they try to stop the blood magic ritual she'd requested to save him, causing her to go into premature labour. Although Daenerys survives, her baby is stillborn and she is left infertile.
  • Inelegant Blubbering: Dany's queenly composure snaps hard when Jorah dies at the end of the Battle for the Dawn, and - for the first time in years — aloof, unflappable Daenerys is reduced to helpless, heartbroken sobbing.
  • In Love with Your Carnage: In Season 1, when Drogo declares he will conquer Westeros after a botched assassination on Daenerys, she looks positively aroused. Happens again when Daario kills a Meereenese champion on her behalf. This is averted with Jon Snow; when he remarks that he doesn't like killing even though he's good at it, she seems quite intrigued.
  • Insistent Terminology: She addressed Jon Snow as just Lord rather than King-in-the-North. To address him as King might as well be an admission on her part that she has no authority over The North.
  • Interspecies Adoption: She adopts the three dragons she hatched in the Red Waste as her children, giving rise to her moniker "the Mother of Dragons". Their biological parents died long ago and Dany treats them as something of a replacement for her stillborn son; given her infertility, she often mentions that the dragons are "the only children [she] will ever have."
  • Impoverished Patrician: To the point that the luxury she finds herself in, as Illyrio's honoured guest, at the start of the series is bewildering. It changes once she starts conquering and pillaging three cities and by the time of Season 7, one can assume that she's quite well-off and independently wealthy to the extent that she values money and currency.
  • It's Personal:
    • She vows to destroy the Night King and stop him by any means necessary after he murdered her dragon Viserion.
    • Cersei having Missandei executed by Ser Gregor right in front of her sends Dany into a seething rage.
  • Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: Gives Anakin Skywalker a run for his money for having the most abrupt transition from hero to mass-murderer.
  • The Kid with the Remote Control: Daenerys herself is pretty much harmless, but she has three fire-breathing dragons who follow her every command. As of Season 3, we can add eight thousand undyingly loyal elite foot soldiers to that list.
  • Killed Off for Real: Dies in Jon's arms after he stabs her to death to save Westeros. She is assassinated while they share their Last Kiss.
  • Kill It with Fire: Her solution to pretty much every problem, though averted with her even-more-brutal execution of Doreah and Daxos. Once her dragons are large enough to fight, she can do this whenever she wants. Dragons aren't a prerequisite for this, as the khals found out.
  • The Kirk: Jorah and Barristan are often bickering, so she must strike a happy medium.
  • Kneel Before Zod: People tend to bend the knee when she walks out of a raging inferno untouched by the flames. Once arriving in Westeros, she requires people to bend the knee. After defeating the Lannister forces in the Battle of Goldroad, she gives the surviving Lannister forces a choice — bend the knee and join her in her efforts to break "the wheel that has rolled over rich and poor to the benefit of no one but the Cersei Lannisters of the world" or die. Randyll and Dickon Tarly refuse to bend the knee and choose death, upon which Daenerys has them executed by dragonfire.
  • Knight Templar: Throughout the series, Daenerys repeatedly demonstrates a preference for justice over mercy when dealing with enemies and traitors, though her advisors are sometimes able to talk her down. In the end of Season 8, blinded by rage and grief, she burns down a city full of innocents to "free them from the grip of the tyrant". She is now convinced that she is the bearer of justice entitled to be Necessarily Evil, and others don't get to choose, just like her late father. Lampshaded in regards to both of them:
    Barristan Selmy [in Season 5]: The mad king gave his enemies the justice he thought they deserved, and each time it made him feel more powerful, and right, until the very end.
    Tyrion [in Season 8]: Everywhere she goes, evil men die and we cheer her for it. And she grows more powerful and more sure that she is good and right. She believes her destiny is to build a better world for everyone. If you believed that, if you truly believed it, wouldn't you kill whoever stood between you and paradise?
  • Lady and Knight: The Lady to Ser Jorah and Ser Barristan's knight (the former in particular serves her mostly out of love for her). Although Grey Worm doesn't hold the title of knight, he also fulfills a similar role to her.
  • Lady of War: Daenerys shows shades of this when she rides Drogon to burn the slavers' fleet in all her queenly, regal glory. Later, she fights a third of the Lannister-Tarly forces from atop Drogon in the Battle of the Goldroad.
  • Large Ham: Considering her numerous speeches and shouting for her dragons...
  • Last of His Kind: With the death of Maester Aemon, Daenerys is the last de jure Targaryen...until it's later revealed that Jon Snow is actually the son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark.
  • Last Stand: During the battle against the White Walkers, she is separated from Drogon and finds herself surrounded by wights with Ser Jorah. She picks up a sword and fights at his side, trying to take out as many of them as possible. She ultimately doesn't die as the Night King is eventually killed, rendering all the wights corpses once more, though Jorah isn't so lucky, having sustained fatal wounds while he defended her from wights.
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: Mirri Maz Duur's blood magic seemingly left Daenerys unable to bear children. From the books... This presents a problem for her goal of ruling Westeros and reestablishing the Targaryen dynasty; the Seven Kingdoms are a hereditary monarchy and Daenerys is widely believed to be the last Targaryen, so getting a suitable heir will be tricky. Tyrion brings up this very issue in Season 7, but Daenerys refuses to discuss the succession until she has claimed the throne.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Zig-Zagged during the Battle of Fire and Ice. The original plan is for Daenerys and Jon to wait on the sidelines until the Night King shows up and ambush him with dragons, but when Daenerys sees her Dothraki being absolutely massacred by the army of the dead, she refuses to stand by and watch her troops be slaughtered, mounting Drogon and raining fire down on the attacking wights. Jon follows suit on Rhaegal. Despite losing the element of surprise, though, this actually ends up saving or at least buying more time for the soldiers on the front lines. It also ultimately turns out that the Night King is immune to dragonfire, so killing wights is pretty much the best and only thing Dany can do.
    Jon: The Night King is coming.
    Daenerys: The dead are already here.
  • Little Sister Heroine: She's a rather warped deconstruction of this for Viserys. All his life he's been protecting his sweet and innocent younger sister. He clearly finds her attractive and once expected to marry her. However, Viserys also feels entitled to do whatever he wants to Daenerys and treats her poorly, while Dany herself is both frightened of Viserys and uncomfortable with his attraction to her, which is portrayed as creepy. As Dany begins developing a backbone and waking her inner dragon, she no longer allows Viserys to control her, enraging him to the point of violence.
  • Living Legend: From the end of Season 1, the remnants of her khalasar most definitely believe this beyond her merely being the last female Targaryen. We also see from Season 5 that the red priests of R'hllor have proclaimed her a divine champion who will lead the world to victory in the Long Night. Her exploits are well known throughout Westeros by the time she and her armies makes landfall.
  • Long-Lost Relative: The Season 6 finale reveals her eldest brother Rhaegar was the biological father of Jon Snow, making Daenerys Jon's aunt. Her poor mother Queen Rhaella had seventeen years of miscarriages and still-births between Rhaegar and Viserys and then another eight-year gap before conceiving Dany. Rhaella finally gives birth to her only living daughter Daenerys approximately 8 to 9 months after Lyanna Stark gave birth to her son Jon, resulting in Jon being slightly older than Daenerys.
  • Love Makes You Crazy:
    • Resorts to forbidden blood magic to save Drogo's life in "Baelor". Subverted in "Blood and Fire" — everyone thinks she's killing herself by walking onto Drogo's funeral pyre, but in reality she's hatching her dragons.
    • Losing many of her loved ones to either death or betrayal in Season 8 doesn't exactly do wonders for her sanity, either.
  • Love Makes You Evil: Losing two of her beloved dragon children and two of her best and only friends culminates in her going on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge against King's Landing.

  • Made a Slave:
    • Played With in Season 1. Although she's never referred to as such per se, she's treated very much like a slave in all but name by Viserys, who trades her as a wife to Drogo in exchange for an army to invade the Seven Kingdoms. Viserys specifically uses terms like "sold" and "bought" to refer to the process, while Daenerys herself says she was "sold like a broodmare". He makes it very clear Dany has no say in the matter; when she says she doesn't want to marry Drogo, Viserys even states he'd let Drogo's entire army and their horses have their way with her if it got him his crown. Dany is able to turn the situation to her advantage and comes to love Drogo, who begins treating her as his wife and queen rather than a slave (in his mind, she was a 'gift' from Viserys), but the experience of being treated like property has a profound effect upon her. She comes to empathize strongly with slaves and eventually sets out to dismantle the slave trade in Essos, liberating all the slaves she can.
    • In Season 6, she is captured by Khal Moro, who calls her his slave and intends to force himself on her, but Dany puts a stop to that by revealing she's Drogo's widow; tradition dictates that a former khaleesi be taken to join the dosh khaleen in Vaes Dothrak and no other man may touch her. She is still technically a captive and her fate lies in the hands of the khals, though it doesn't last long before she frees herself with Jorah and Daario's help.
  • Magical Abortion: Not intended. Through her labour pained proximity to Mirri's blood magic ritual, Rhaego dies in her womb and to add extra nightmare fuel to the fire, is warped into some half-human half-dragon abomination by the resonance of such black sorcery.
  • Magnetic Hero: The few people she's come across that haven't ended up dead for crossing her so far have joined her, either out of personal debt or being enchanted by her exotic nature. She is highly beautiful, charismatic and intelligent, and has a presence that few can resist. Furthermore, her circle is drawn from all sorts of countries and walks of life, and chosen for their actions and abilities rather than their origins.
  • The Magnificent: Also known as Daenerys Stormborn, which is just one of the many names and titles she acquires over the series.
  • Mama Bear: Do. Not. Touch. Her. Dragons. If not you'll be reminded that her father was Aerys Targaryen. She even tells Jorah that they're the only children she will ever have. From the books... She's also pretty protective of her followers, too, particularly Missandei.
  • Mama Didn't Raise No Criminal: The roles are reversed, but Daenerys finds it difficult to accept the actions of her father, almost to the point of denial. Only after having a heart-to-heart with Ser Barristan is she able to see the deceased madman for what he was.
  • Marital Rape License: Drogo takes her against her will on their wedding night despite her protests and then continues to take her without her consent and in spite of obvious discomfort. This is a stark contrast to the book's wedding night. However, it's a somewhat complex situation. Drogo isn't forceful or violent — he seems to think that Daenerys's tears are due to shyness rather than fear, and the language barrier means she can't correct him. Also, sex in his culture seems to be pretty rough anyway, so he very well might not realize how things seem from her perspective. A possible darker explanation is that Drogo is used to raping women; hence his assumption that "no" in her language is a term of endearment.
  • Maternal Death? Blame the Child!: One of the many reasons Viserys came to both hate and love his little sister in the same breath. Never having a mother of her own is quite critical to Dany's burgeoning maternal feelings to her own adopted 'children', both the draconian kind and the followers who worship her.
  • Maternity Crisis: She goes into premature labour after being knocked down by one of Drogo's bloodriders, after he attempts to intervene in Mirri Maz Duur's blood magic ritual, which Daenerys had requested in a desperate attempt to save Drogo from an infected wound. Despite Mirri's warning that no one should enter the tent where the ritual is taking place, Jorah carries Dany inside anyway to get her help, as the midwives refuse to touch her. Dany's child is subsequently stillborn and she is left infertile, though alive.
  • Mercy Kill: Has to euthanize her own husband, after Mirri Maz Duur's deliberately botched blood magic ritual leaves Drogo in a vegetative state. Eventually has this inflicted upon her by Jon, after it has become clear that she’s too insane to be reasoned with and is in danger of destroying the world she has worked on building.
  • Messianic Archetype:
    • Definitely invokes some Christ parallels. The Dothraki think she will give birth to the Stallion that Mounts the World and this seems to connect to a prophecy that she herself believes which marks her as the Dragon of the Targaryens. Which seems to be confirmed when she successfully hatches three dragons. It's not clear yet if the prophecies surrounding her involve the good kind of messiah or the bad one.
    • Jorah Mormont seems to think this. Out of everyone who's vying for the Iron Throne, he believes Daenerys is the only claimant with a good heart and the inner-strength that would win her the love of her subjects and the fear of her enemies. On the other hand, he's probably a little biased.
    • Taken even further in Season 3, where Daenerys is responsible for freeing the Army of the Unsullied from slavery, as well as liberating the slaves of Astapor and Yunkai. In all instances, the former slaves pledge their Undying Loyalty to her and come to revere her as their saviour.
    • And in Seasons 5 and 6, it is revealed that many of the Red Priests of Volantis consider her their religion's Chosen One, in place of Stannis.
    • In the final episodes of Season 8, Daenerys becomes a Dark Messiah; she helps defeat the White Walkers and wins King's Landing, defeating Cersei, but afterward, she goes Ax-Crazy, killing thousands of surrendered civilians and proclaiming this is the only way to break the wheel and create a better world... and she has intentions to do this everywhere before Jon, unable to dissuade her, assassinates her to stop this.
  • Mighty Whitey:
    • Her story-arc in Meereen has visual connotations of this, mostly because the show-runners used local extras when shooting in Morocco. In Season 3, all the slaves we see are brown but in the books, they're explicitly from all over the world and many are white themselves, later seasons corrected this with extras reflecting a diverse spectrum and making the situation more a political-economic issue than a cultural-colonialist one. As Missandei of Naath points out, Dany is ending the slave trade with her three dragons and is willingly chosen by people of multiple races, and she's likewise assimilated into the Dothraki and the many peoples she comes across, speaking their languages.
    • Interestingly, Dany comes off as a colonizing force to Westeros (which is coded white in the show). She is painted by Cersei and others as a conquering foreign barbarian. Even the North, and Ser Davos, are wary about her armies, dragons and her family line due to the actions of Aerys Targaryen. While Dany and Jon Snow agree children are not to blame for the sins of their father and he recognizes her morals are good, he is initially reluctant to bend the knee to her since the North won't want to submit to a foreign ruler. Dany even uses the classic imperialist justification, namely by reminding everyone What the Romans Have Done for Us.
      • Her entire family was this to Westeros. The Targaryen Dynasty was never native to the land they reigned over, having originated from the Valyrian Freehold. After the Doom of Valyria, they migrated permanently to Westeros, before Aegon the Conquer started his conquest of the Seven Kingdoms.
  • Mirror Character: To Cersei Lannister. Come Season 8, they've both proved they're willing to burn down cities and kill innocent civilians in their quest for power, and are both consumed with vengeance even it hurts people that haven't wronged them or even backfires on them personally in the long-run. By the season finale, Daenerys might have proved herself worse than Cersei, since she wants to expand her control beyond Westeros — for all of Cersei's flaws, she only ever sought to only stay and keep her power rather than Take Over the World.
  • Misplaced Retribution: Wanting revenge on Cersei for killing Rhaegal and Missandei and for all the other horrible things she's done is perhaps understandable... but burning down King's Landing as part of that revenge, even after they surrendered? That's going way overboard.
  • Modest Royalty: As Drogo's khaleesi, she usually wears Dothraki riding leathers with minimal accessories. After becoming a queen in her own right, she tends to wear fancier clothing, though they are still usually practical (for example, she always wears leggings even beneath her floor-length gowns in case she ever needs to make a quick getaway). She also tends to favor simpler designs and patterns compared to the more elaborate clothing worn by the upper classes of King's Landing and the Free Cities.
  • Morality Chain: Several of her advisers served as this to her, but none more so than Jorah Mormont, who loved her and believed the most in her out of everyone. Unsurprisingly, it is Jorah's death in the Battle for the Dawn that begins Daenerys's descent into insanity.
  • More Deadly Than the Male: Though a demure young girl with no propensity for arms, and an openness to non-violent solutions at least on the outset, she is directly and indirectly the possessor of the largest body count in the show.
  • Ms. Fanservice: She certainly has her moments and appears in a few nude scenes (in Season 1 mostly). And while her travelling wear is quite functional, her formal wear (seen when she meets with the master from Yunkai) is almost as revealing as Margaery's typical outfits.
  • My God, What Have I Done?:
  • Mystical White Hair: A definitive feature of her family's ancestry (such as those seen in House of the Dragon) and one of her most notable physical features.
  • Mythical Motifs: Dragons, obviously. Notice her season 7 outfits in particular, with patterns resembling scales, a two-piece cape symbolizing wings, and hair styled back to look like a head crest. One of her dresses, in particular, gives her an Uncatty Resemblance to Drogon.
  • Near-Death Experience: She comes close to death after going into premature childbirth and being carried into the middle of a blood magic ritual (the books make it more explicit just how close she came to dying).
  • Nerves of Steel: She is the blood of the dragon and a dragon is not afraid. Right from episode one, she's been showing the kind of reserve and spine a ruler of realms should have. She's been insulted, intimidated and threatened in various unpleasant ways by several powerful people. None of them managed to so much as affect her expression, much less her resolve. Reaches a CMOA when she refuses to back down against Drogon's black rage in Daznak's Pit. If she had; he probably would have devoured her.
  • Never My Fault: Following her Sanity Slippage, she insists that Cersei was to blame for the civilian deaths in King's Landing because she "used their innocence against [her]", even though Cersei actually surrendered and Dany chose to continue the attack anyway.
  • New Era Speech: Gives something of one to the Unsullied and Dothraki after the Battle of King's Landing, telling them that they 'liberated' the city – which is currently a smoking ruin – but that their work is not yet finished, as they must 'liberate' the rest of Westeros to usher in a new world of freedom from tyranny. She's apparently far gone enough that she genuinely believes what she's saying.
  • Nice Girl: While still brutal to those who cross her, Dany is one of the nicer characters in the series, treating her people almost like family. She loses this trait late in Season 8 when she razes King's Landing out of revenge, even though the defenders had tried to surrender. In the final episode, it seems to have evolved into Affably Evil, as she's quite pleasant to those she regards as being loyal to her.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero:
    • Despite liberating the slaves in Astapor and Yunkai, those two cities end up back in the hands of despots as soon as she moves along. In Meereen, her negligent care of her dragons has caused collateral damage. Furthermore, her Black-and-White Morality approach to punishing the Masters has resulted in the deaths of some of the more sympathetic political figures as well. Leaving her dragons unattended leads to the death of a three-year-old girl.
    • Her attempted conquest of Westeros comes back to haunt her in Season Eight. Even though the pressing threat is the Night King and his army there are still smoldering resentments amongst the nobility both over her entitlement and all the people she killed both in battle and for refusing to bend the knee to her — those people had friends and families and none of them are particularly happy about having to work with her to save the realm. Sam, in particular, tells Jon that he believes she's more interested in power than doing right by Westeros; Jon gave up his title of King of the North, so Dany would pledge her army to fight the Night King, would she do the same?
    • Her bringing all her dragons to rescue the wight hunters has disastrous long-term consequences — Viserion is not only killed but he is turned into a wight, enabling the Night King to finally destroy the Wall and easily bring all his troops through. With the Horn Of Winter being retconned out of existence, if she had convinced them not to go on the foolish hunt or let them die, the White Walkers never would have been able to breach the Wall and come south. Oops.
  • Nice to the Waiter: In a stark contrast to her brother, Daenerys is shown early on to be very courteous to and protective of her servants, drawing comparisons to her other brother, Rhaegar, who was known to be generous to the smallfolk. Dany treats some of her servants, in particular, Missandei and Jorah, more like friends or family, being a lot less formal with them compared to the aloof, regal image she projects to others. She is also very compassionate towards the commoners of Slaver's Bay, doing what she can to help them and in fact, gets along with them far better than the nobles. She eventually expresses a desire to Tyrion to restructure the Seven Kingdoms to improve things for the smallfolk and stop them from being crushed time and time again by the power games of the lords.
  • Noble Fugitive: Has been on the run for most of her life and expects to never truly find a home to settle down in after her work is done. A wish that is possibly greater than upholding her family's legacy.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished:
    • She stops her guards from maiming Viserys even after he hurt her and then tries to mend their relationship by inviting him to supper and having Dothraki clothes made for him. Viserys isn't exactly grateful; he violently threatens her handmaiden, insults her and his gifts and hits her. Then he threatens her and her unborn child with a sword.
    • She stops the Dothraki from engaging in rape as the spoils of war. This leads to Drogo being injured in a challenge. A cunning village woman seizes the chance to take revenge on Drogo and Dany along with their unborn son; this same woman was one of the women Dany had tried to save from rape and also protected from the Dothraki who had wanted to kill her as a witch.
    • Particularly in the latter half of Season 4 and throughout Season 5, she makes a genuine effort to compromise with the nobility of Slaver's Bay while still putting her foot down about slavery. In response, they plot against her with the help of the Sons of the Harpy, repeatedly attacking and killing her soldiers, former slaves and free men who support her, and finally laying siege to Meereen and killing many civilians.
    • This repeatedly happens in Season 7. First, she agrees with Tyrion that she won't immediately attack King's Landing so as not to harm civilians. However, Tyrion's ensuing plans result in many of Dany's Westerosi allies being either captured or killed and her Unsullied being trapped at Casterly Rock. Then she flies North to help rescue the wight hunters upon learning they're in trouble...and one of her dragons is killed. Then she agrees to a truce with Cersei, is perfectly civil with her and doesn't take the opportunity to sneak attack her or anything because she believes the war against the White Walkers is more important...and Cersei only pretends to agree to help, leaving Dany and her allies down an army and meaning Viserion died for no reason. Oh, and then the Night King turns Viserion into a wight and uses him to bust down the Wall.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: On baseline, Daenerys has been argued as a Gender Flipped version of Henry VII of The House of Tudor, whose overarching ambition is to return and claim his birthright as the last of the Lancastrian side. Much like the Targaryens, the Tudors would carry the Welsh dragon as their standard. Similarly, Henry VII cements his alliance with marriage to Elizabeth of York (who is the preferred rallying point of his erstwhile enemies in the House of York). Daenerys, by contrast, would struggle to keep the Starks on side—be it due to the general mistrust of Sansa, the Lady of Winterfell and her tragic romance with Jon Snow, King in the North.
    • Character arc-wise, the show's iteration of Daenerys harkens back to the historical fates of Alexander the Great (as a Young Conqueror who practices Going Native and assimilates peoples she conquers into her army, and whose reign in her conquered territories were made unstable by her absence) as well as Julius Caesar (an Impoverished Patrician who forges her fate, army and influence on her own, but subsequently makes politically-unacceptable impositions that end with her assassination).
    • Her being an exiled noblewoman who eventually commences her invasion of her chosen kingdom with a lover by her side (a magnate perceived to be beneath her station, at that) is also akin to Isabella of France, who earned the unflattering nickname "She-Wolf". Very similarly, Isabella's takeover is eventually perceived as a Full-Circle Revolution / Meet the New Boss, which ends in her deposition. Unlike Isabella, of course, Daenerys was assassinated at the cusp of her victory, by the very man she loved.
  • "No More Holding Back" Speech: Gives one to Jon when they first meet, talking about everything she has lost and suffered and endured to make it to where she is now. She says that the one that kept her going was her faith in "myself" that she could overcome these things, before declaring "I was born to rule the Seven Kingdoms. And I will."
  • No-Sell: Completely immune to harm from fire or heat, much like her true dragon "off-spring".
  • Not Helping Your Case: Varys begins to plot against her since to him, she was the best of several options, including Tommen and Stannis and especially compared to Joffrey. However, her own actions and family's reputation for insanity means that once he learns Jon Snow has a claim he begins preparing a back-up plan. When Dany finds out, she promptly has Drogon roast him alive. Later when King's Landing begins to surrender, she loses it completely and sacks it even worse than Tywin Lannister did over two decades previously.
  • Not Good with Rejection: When Jon is unable to return Dany’s sexual advances after finding out about their Surprise Incest, this rejection — while she's already feeling extremely isolated — contributes to her sharp decline in sanity in "The Bells".
  • Not Quite the Right Thing: Dany frees a great deal of younger oppressed slaves and incorporates them into her followers. The willing ones seem to make a cult of personality out of her. The only problem being that other classes of bondsmen have taken the opportunity to either become cruel dictators themselves or otherwise allowed their former masters to enslave them again without any complaint! Since they know of little else. Meaning her crusade to end slavery has actually worsened the situation, despite being a morally good course of action.
  • Not So Stoic: Dany tries to maintain the composure of queenly haughtiness as she grows into her role as a ruler. In Season 8 that composure breaks, reducing her to inconsolable sobbing as Jorah dies in her arms.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: She pretends to not understand the Valyrian dialect Kraznys mo Nakloz is speaking, only to reveal right before she fries him that she understood him all along.
  • Oblivious to Love:
    • Takes until mid-Season 2 (and half-a-dozen people pointing it out first), to start wondering if Jorah Mormont is in love with her. From the books... And even then, she doesn't appear to really realize it until Jorah outright tells her he's in love with her midway through Season 6.
    • She's initially a bit oblivious, or at least willfully ignorant of Jon's affections for her, until Tyrion bluntly tells her his interest in her is more than political.
    Tyrion: Drogo, Ser Jorah, Daario and now this Jon Snow. They all fell in love with you.
    Daenerys: Jon Snow's not in love with me.
    Tyrion: Oh, my mistake. He must stare at you longingly because he's hoping for a successful military alliance.
    (Dany smiles)
  • Oh, Crap!: She gets two huge moments of this in "The Long Night"; when the Night King proves to be immune to dragonfire and then when she is knocked off Drogon's back and finds herself defenceless on the ground, surrounded by freshly-animated wights.
  • Ojou Ringlets: She sometimes wears her hair in a style reminiscent of this (often paired with braids) and is a powerful queen and Lady of War.
  • One Bad Mother: The Mother of Dragons becomes an example of this trope in late Season 8 when she turns King's Landing to ash, setting her up as the final antagonist of the show.
  • The Only One: On the opinion of Varys, she is the only viable candidate to the Iron Throne; stronger than Tommen and gentler than Stannis. Presumably, as of the end of Season 6, his opinion is stronger than ever.
  • The Ophelia: A darker take on this trope. Dany is a very beautiful and elegant Dragon Rider who seems almost otherworldly at times...and as of the end of Season 8, is decidedly not sane.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: She had a stillborn son with Khal Drogo. Later on she is Forced to Watch as Viserion, one of her beloved Dragons whom she considers a son, is killed by the Night King. She later loses Rhaegal as well when he is shot down by Euron Greyjoy.
  • Out of the Frying Pan: In Season 5, she escapes an attack by the Sons of the Harpy by fleeing Meereen on Drogon's back. However, she subsequently ends up lost in the wilderness, miles away from civilization and with no easy way of getting back (Drogon seems to have had enough flying for today)...and then she is surrounded by a Dothraki horde.
  • Out of the Inferno:
    • Walks into her husband's raging funeral pyre and emerges the next morning entirely unharmed after the flames have burnt down to ashes and embers.
    • Does it again in the sixth season, out of the temple of the Dosh Khaleen, after boarding to death the assembled Khals.
  • Parental Abandonment: She was raised by her older brother, as her father was assassinated shortly before she was born, and her mother died giving birth to her.
  • Parental Favoritism: While she clearly loves all three of her dragons, she appears to be closer to Drogon than Rhaegal and Viserion; he eventually becomes her personal mount once he's big enough for her to ride while the other two just tag along.
  • Parents in Distress: Dany's dragons, though especially Drogon, have been known to come to her aid when she's in trouble or even if someone merely insults her. Woe betide the one who threatens her when they're around. During the Battle of the Goldroad, Drogon even puts himself between Dany and Jaime Lannister and nearly barbeques him when he charges at her.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: A firm believer in this:
    • In Season 1, she doesn't flinch when her brother, who abused her for much of her life, is killed before her when Khal Drogo pours melted gold onto his head. She later burns Mirri Maz Duur alive for killing her husband and unborn child.
    • In Season 2, she locks Xaro with Doreah inside the merchant prince's vault to die from starvation and lack of oxygen for conspiring against her and trying to take her dragons.
    • Exemplified by the Sack of Astapor.
    • In "Oathkeeper", she crucifies one hundred and sixty-three Meereenese slave owners in retaliation for the same number of slave children they had crucified to intimidate her.
    • Rounds up the heads of Meereen's most noble houses in "Kill the Boy"... then has one of them burned alive and torn to shreds by her dragons, while the other noblemen are forced to watch. She doesn't even care who is innocent by that point... But then again, were any of them?
    • The Lannisters rob and loot the Reach of its wealth and food, and brazenly take out her allies. So she responds by more or less massacring their army with the Dothraki and Drogon, charbroiling most of the soldiers.
  • Incinerating Randyll Tarly. While certainly a questionable decision, Randyll wasn't an especially nice guy; he's horrible to his son Sam and threatened to kill him unless he joined the Night's Watch so he could disown him in favor of his brother, continues to treat Sam like crap even after he has proven himself to be a success in the Watch, is bigoted towards Gilly simply for being wildling and betrayed House Tyrell to help sack Highgarden.
    • While destroying King's Landing and burning the innocents of the city, Daenerys also causes the death of Cersei Lannister, who definitely had it coming.
  • Peaceful in Death: Aside from the thin lines of blood running from her nose and mouth (and the dagger sticking out of her chest), Daenerys's body looks as though she might be sleeping.
  • Peerless Love Interest:
    • To Ser Jorah. He is head-over-heels for her and is one of her oldest and most devoted followers. He knows he has no chance with her, but he remains by her side nevertheless, wanting more than anything to see her on the Iron Throne. Even when she banishes him, he goes to extraordinary lengths to get back to her and is even willing to risk death fighting in gladiator games just so he can be near her. Although she doesn't return his love, Daenerys is deeply touched by his loyalty and regards him as a dear friend.
    • Also to Daario Naharis, although he is far more forward about his feelings than Jorah. He is willing to screw over his commanders to take control of the Second Sons, bring them over to her side and pledge his sword, life and heart to her just days after they met out of infatuation and admiration for her. He is willing to do anything she asks, even vowing to kill her enemies anywhere in the world. When she breaks things off with him, he laments that no one else could ever compare to the Mother of Dragons and willingly (albeit grudgingly) remains in Meereen to keep the peace at her command.
    • This is deconstructed with Jon and Tyrion in Season 8; they're so in awe of her that they are blinded to her increasingly dark and unhinged mindset until it's too late. Even after witnessing Daenerys snap and raze King's Landing, Jon desperately tries to justify it in some way until Tyrion makes him see that as admirable as Daenerys was and no matter how much they love her, what she has become is terrible and she needs to be stopped before more people are killed.
  • Perfectly Arranged Marriage: Zigzagged with her betrothal to Khal Drogo. Initially subverted, in that she's not happy to go with him at first and their wedding night is consummated against her will. Then played straight, in that they grow to be very happy together and are expecting their first child before happy times go down the drain. Then double subverted in "The Queen's Justice", where a livid Daenerys recounts "being raped" as one of the indignities she suffered to regain her throne, which reveals she never did forget or necessarily forgive Drogo for their wedding night.
  • Pintsized Powerhouse: Daenerys is a small woman, standing around 5'2" and occasionally being disparaged as a "midget". However, with an army of mercenaries, Unsullied and Dothraki and dragons at her command, she's one of the most formidable characters in the series with a massive body count. In Season 6, she even personally takes out a roomful of khals simply by overturning some braziers, blocking the door and exploiting her fire immunity.
  • Platonic Life-Partners: How she sees her relationship with Jorah. He is the father / elder brother figure that Viserys failed to live up to be for her. This makes his duplicity when initially entering her service cut her to the quick when it's revealed and for her gratitude and admiration for him to soar when he proves, by hell or high-water, that he will always return to her side.
  • Post-Final Boss: Takes this role in the last two episodes of the show, following the defeat of the Night King a couple episodes prior. True to the trope, rather than several episodes of encounters and planning around her leading up to a running 80-minute battle, like the Night's King, Daenerys is dealt with as an afterthought at the halfway point of a single episode.
  • Power of Trust: Despite claiming to despise her reliance on this, Dany doesn't have much choice but to believe in the loyalty she inspires and capitalize on it in her quest. But a betrayal for blood by Mirri Maz Dur and a betrayal for gold by both Doreah and Xaro have left their marks...
  • Pragmatic Hero. As a whole, she has good, just morals, but she has a record of treating those who make an enemy of her with total brutality... which, of course, is made much more justified in the fact that most of her enemies have been colossal assholes. In Season 8, she takes her ruthlessness too far and becomes a villain.
  • Pregnant Badass: While noticeably pregnant, Daenerys is able to consume an entire stallion's heart raw as part of a traditional Dothraki ceremony and successfully fights back when Viserys tries to hurt her, leaving him cowering at her feet.
    Dany to Viserys: I am a khaleesi of the Dothraki! I am the wife of the great khal and I carry his son inside me. The next time you raise a hand to me will be the last time you have hands!
  • Practically Different Generations: By the time she was born, her eldest brother Rhaegar was old enough to have had kids. It's clearly evident with Jon Snow being roughly the same age as she is, despite also being her secret nephew.
  • Pretty in Mink: In Season 7 she rides North beyond the wall on dragon back and dresses to the nines to do so in a smoky silver fur overcoat that could perhaps be made from the Hrakkar white lion pelt that Drogo gave her in the books; especially when we see the tail cloak looks to be a type of tiger pelt. It makes a reappearance in Season 8. To a lesser extent, many of her other outfits once she arrives in Westeros are lined with fur due to the cold.
  • Pretty Princess Powerhouse: She's a beautiful, righteous princess/queen with a gorgeous fashion sense, and is a supreme conqueror, commander and Dragon Rider who can decimate entire armies.
  • Pride: Although not arrogant to the point of complete idiocy (unlike Viserys), Dany's pride does occasionally prove to be an issue for her. She sometimes makes rash decisions without thinking through the consequences because she's convinced it's the right thing to do at the time; she also occasionally demands to be given things because of her family name and title, despite not having yet earned people’s trust and respect. To be fair to her, she gets better about this; she is willing to listen to her advisors and acknowledge when she's effed up (albeit grudgingly at times) and she also comes to realize she has to actually back up her Badass Boasts and earn people's loyalty (which she's actually quite good at when she wants to be). It's also implied that she clings to her sense of pride as a coping mechanism, seeing how she grew up with nothing and no confidence in herself. From the books...
  • Princess in Rags: A literal example after Khal Drogo dies and most of the khalasar abandon her at the end of Season 1. She is reduced to walking across the desert in rags and begging for her people to be allowed to shelter in Qarth, after realizing she's in no position to threaten the city into helping her. She remains determined to reclaim her power and protect her people despite her dire situation...and succeeds massively. She briefly becomes this again in Season 6 after being driven from Meereen and taken captive by Khal Moro. She makes it very clear she has no intention of settling down with the crones of the dosh khaleen and is determined to return to Meereen. Once again, she not only regains her position, but greatly strengthens it by bringing the Dothraki under her banner.
    Head Priestess: Why didn't you come to us after Khal Drogo died?
    Daenerys: Because I am Daenerys Stormborn, the Breaker of Chains, the Queen of Meereen and the Mother of Dragons. My place is not here with you.
  • The Promise: In "The Wolf and the Dragon", she gives Cersei her word that King's Landing will be safe until the White Walkers are dealt with. She honors this promise; she only burns the city to the ground after defeating the dead.
  • Properly Paranoid: Downplayed. Particularly by the later seasons, she shows some tendencies to be suspicious of others' loyalties and motivations, especially amongst her own followers. However, considering how many times she's been used and betrayed by people she trusts over the years, it's not really all that surprising. A notable moment is when she questions Varys' loyalties in Season 7; she has a point when she brings up that he has double-crossed every monarch he previously served and was the one who arranged for her to be assassinated. She leans more towards Improperly Paranoid in regards to Tyrion, though; more than once she has suggested he's secretly still loyal to his family and is working towards her downfall, but Tyrion is actually loyal to Dany and his failings as her Hand are genuine mistakes. She turns out to be completely on-the-money about Varys; the moment he learns Jon is actually the rightful heir, he starts plotting to undermine her and it's even suggested he attempted to have her poisoned. She reacts rather predictably and his betrayal pretty much tips her over the edge into insanity.
  • Protagonist-Centered Morality: In-Universe, her belief she's a hero and her Black-and-White Insanity tends to rear its head in the form of her denouncing those who are against her as "evil" and presuming herself to always be "good" regardless of context.
    • In Season 1; she is outraged that Mirri lied to her and arranged for Khal Drogo to be reduced to a living corpse by a supposed "healing" rite that also killed her and Drogo's unborn son, seeing it as a betrayal. Despite the fact that, as Mirri reminds her, Drogo was a bloodthirsty barbarian warlord whose people kill for fun, rape for pleasure, and ravage the land, and in fact, Mirri only wound up in Daenerys's service because Drogo chose to massacre Mirri's village and enslave her for idle amusement. Furthermore, a Khal's son prophesied to lead the Dothraki to extend their bloodthirsty reach to Westeros really would not be seen as anything less than the spawn of evil by anyone other than a Dothraki. Rather than concede that Mirri has a point, she quite understandably has the woman burnt alive as a human sacrifice for reducing her progress to dust.
    • This is explicitly pointed out by Tyrion in the final episode. Throughout the series, Daenerys had many evil men killed, and the people cheered for her because her victims were evil men and she was right. What happens to her when everyone around her treated her as an infallible hero who's always right? She began to believe it. By the time she burns King's Landing and makes plans to continue her crusade across all of Westeros, she makes it clear that because everything she believes is right and justified, she can do whatever she believes has to be done.
  • Protagonist Journey to Villain: The first six seasons are her journey to become a hero to Essos, while the last two (especially the final season) show her fall into madness.
  • Pyrrhic Victory:
    • In Season 7, her troops manage to capture Casterly Rock; however, they learn that Cersei has already abandoned it and taken all its supplies, making it a pretty worthless victory, while Euron Greyjoy destroys the fleet the Unsullied arrived on, leaving them trapped there.
    • In the penultimate episode of Season 8, she finally defeats Cersei and claims the Iron Throne, but the sheer brutality of her actions in the Battle of King's Landing has alienated most of her allies. Before his death, Varys had also sent out letters to the noble houses informing them of Jon Snow's true parentage, so soon everyone will know she's not actually the 'rightful' heir.

  • Reasonable Authority Figure: In Season 5, upon meeting Tyrion Lannister she actually hears him out rather than immediately execute him and decides to give him a chance to serve her. In Season 7, in spite of her initial skepticism, she is convinced to let Jon Snow mine dragonglass for weapons to fight the White Walkers and agrees to negotiate a truce with Cersei to address the pressing ice zombie problem. Upon learning the wight hunters beyond the Wall are in trouble, she personally goes to rescue them and then immediately pledges to help the Northerners fight the dead after seeing for herself just how serious the situation is.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: In the final two seasons, she switches her wardrobe to the colors of her house and subsequently begins descending into villainy.
  • Red Baron: While she has acquired or taken upon several titles, 'Mother of Dragons' is becoming her most famous moniker. Her other titles,'The Unburnt' and 'Breaker of Chains' are just a little less badass.
  • Revenge Before Reason:
    • In Season 5, she has two Meereenese nobles killed by her dragons to avenge Ser Barristan's murder by the Sons of the Harpy, even though she doesn't actually know which of them - if any - were involved and it probably isn't going to help her keep the peace and find Barristan's killers.
    • Subverted in Season 8's "The Last of the Starks". After Euron Greyjoy shoots down Rhaegal with a ballista bolt, she flies straight at him on Drogon, apparently intending to burn down his ship, even though he and the other ships have more bolts armed and ready. However, at the last moment she realizes she would be dooming herself and Drogon and veers off.
    • In "The Bells", she ultimately refuses to accept the surrender of King's Landing after everything Cersei has done (including killing her dragon-child Rhaegal and best friend Missandei) and after everything that has been taken from her family since they were exiled from Westeros. In her rage, Daenerys sets King's Landing ablaze.
  • Rightful Queen Returns: Played with. She has this belief about herself when it comes to re-taking the Seven Kingdoms, especially seeing as Viserys would constantly harp on about how the Iron Throne was stolen from them by Robert Baratheon, while Illyrio Mopatis reports that the smallfolk secretly long for their return. It doesn't help that Westeros has been torn apart by civil war and as of Season 6's finale is being ruled by Cersei Lannister, while Daenerys actually aspires to restore order and improve things for the commoners. However, she seems to be slowly realizing to some extent that the people of Westeros don't really care about her being the 'rightful' ruler and that she will have to do more to actually earn their support. It also turns out that Jon Snow has a better claim to the throne than her; even though he insists he doesn't want the throne, she knows that if this became public knowledge the people would probably back him instead of her for this reason.
    Varys: Cersei controls fewer than half the Seven Kingdoms. The Lords of Westeros despise her; even before your arrival they plotted against her. Now...
    Daenerys:... They cry out for their true queen? They drink secret toasts to my health? People used to tell my brother that sort of thing and he was stupid enough to believe them.
  • Ring on a Necklace: After getting lost in the Dothraki Sea and being captured by a khalasar, Daenerys drops her late mother's ring on the ground so that she can be tracked. Jorah and Daario find the ring and return it to her, after which she wears it around her neck on a cord for most of Season 6. In this situation Daenerys doesn't have anything else to wear but Dothraki clothing (her other clothing was either damaged or taken from her), but she makes sure part of her Targaryen heritage is close to her at all times.
  • Royal Inbreeding: She grew up expecting to marry Viserys one day (though she didn't seem all that happy about it) and she isn't too concerned about Jon being her nephew, still wanting to have a sexual relationship with him even after learning the truth. Justified to an extent, considering her family practiced incest for centuries.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: She sits in on council meetings to discuss important matters and listens to her people's complaints and supplications in person. After learning how to ride Drogon, she also leads her troops from atop him. In Season 7, she personally goes beyond the Wall with her dragons to assist the group that had gone to retrieve a wight and is vital to the plan succeeding, also pledging to help the Starks fight the White Walkers. In Season 8, she makes good on that promise, offering aerial support to the troops during the battle of Winterfell and even attempting to take on the Night King himself. She also helps defend Bran from wights; after being thrown from Drogon's back, she even arms herself with a sword to keep fighting.
  • Royalty Super Power: She seems to be a genetic throwback to the ancient Valyrian sorceresses, gifting her with rare instances of foresight that manifest themselves as bizarre dreams; not to mention the fact that she, (so far) has not been hurt by any form of incendiaries, (thankfully Viserion and Rhaegal decide not to test the upper limits of this immunity by bathing her in dragon-fire during her visit to them in: The Wars to Come). She is a quick-study and likely capable of more instances of Blood Magic. And to top this off, she has an emotive link to her dragons that goes beyond mere imprinting, influencing their moods depending on her own and allowing her to acquire some, (admittedly limited) control over their actions without lost binding spells of any kind, merely command-phrases.
    Daenerys: Do you understand? I'm no ordinary woman.
  • Rule of Three: Seems to be a theme with Dany — she is the third child of Aerys Targaryen, has three dragons, conquered three slaver cities, and her house sigil is a three-headed dragon.
  • Sanity Slippage: Over the course of the final season, there's a build-up to Dany's personal breaking point — the deaths of one of her dragons and her best friend, the loss of Jorah, Jon going against her wishes by insisting he must tell his sisters about his heritage and this having disastrous consequences when Sansa tells Tyrion who tells Varys who plots against her, Dany's increasing despair in feeling she'll never be able to earn the love of Westeros, Jon being unable to return to their intimate relationship because — though he loves her — he can't get over their Surprise Incest. This causes Dany to Jump Off The Slippery Slope rather quickly. Her father only nearly destroyed King's Landing. Daenerys burned it down completely and totally despite it having already surrendered. By the next episode, she appears to have become completely delusional, insisting she is liberating everyone from tyranny without a shred of rationality or self-reflection.
  • Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: She temporarily slips into this in "Baelor" out of desperation to save her dying husband. When Rakharo protests that using blood magic is forbidden, she snaps at him "I am your khaleesi, I tell you what is forbidden!" Unfortunately this backfires on her, as Drogo's bloodrider Qotho doesn't take kindly to his khaleesi's use of blood magic even if it could save Drogo, shoving her to the ground and injuring her when she tries to stop him from intervening. And when she goes into premature labour, the midwives refuse to go near her out of fear she's cursed.
  • Second Love: Daenerys and Jon Snow become this for each other in Season 7 after the deaths of their First Loves earlier on in the series.
  • Self-Made Woman: From abused child to an independent woman; from glorified sex slave to fully-realized Khaleesi; from penniless widow to commander of eight thousand elite soldiers and liberator of over two hundred thousand slaves. She remarks that she did the last two things in only a fortnight.
  • Seriously Scruffy:
    • At the end of Season 5 and the beginning of Season 6, Daenerys has been forced to flee Meereen on dragonback and ends up lost in the Dothraki sea, where she is captured by Khal Moro's khalasar. Her white dress has been torn and stained, and her formerly neatly braided hair looks like it's been through a hedge backwards, reflecting the direness of her situation.
    • During her Heroic BSoD in Season 8, she looks pale and exhausted with dark undereye circles and her hair hanging messily loose; it looks as though she began taking out her Braids of Action only to give up halfway through.
  • Sex Goddess: She deliberately got some of her handmaidens to teach her how to be a better lover during her marriage to Drogo, which seems to have paid off according to her future lovers. Daario in particular claims he's hardly able to keep up with her in bed and she often leaves him exhausted.
  • Sex Is Good: Daenerys has utilized her sexuality to not only claim her first position of authority alongside her husband, but also to mature from a callow girl into a fierce woman. After Drogo dies, she becomes fully divorced from sexual acts until over halfway through Season 4 when she shares a night of passion with Daario Naharis. Immediately after, her administration becomes pro-actively rejuvenated, with her sending her lover away from her on a mission of battle and diplomacy, instead of keeping him close. She also follows Jorah's advice for the first time since Season 1 and reinforces both men's loyalty while fulfilling her own agenda of attempting to subjugate Slaver's Bay as a fair ruler.
  • Sex Slave: She nearly becomes this for Khal Moro... for about five minutes. Before he can have his way with her, she reveals she was the wife of the late Khal Drogo so, by Dothraki law, he can't touch her.
  • Sexual Karma: It's only when Dany teaches Drogo to have sex with her as an equal does she get pregnant. She later also has a healthy sex life with Daario Naharis who while not good is moderated into a more righteous path during their relationship.
  • Shameful Strip: Daenerys gets four of these:
    • First at the hands of her brother feeling up her "woman's body" under the pretext of making sure she's fit for marriage. Daenerys endures this one with a weary resignation.
    • Second by her new husband on their wedding night. Unlike the first one, she sobs and desperately tries to cover herself during this one.
    • Thirdly again by Drogo, who takes her very violently from behind while she is stark naked. Daenerys doesn't resist, but is clearly not enjoying it.
    • Fourth by the widows of the Dosh Khaleen, who get their rocks off by giving Dany's pride yet another kicking, forcibly relieving Dany of her tattered queenly raiment and adornment. She still takes it better than Cersei does in the books though, settling for a Death Glare to all present and not fighting them tooth and nail to preserve her modesty.
  • She Who Fights Monsters: Daenerys descends into this in Season 8. She wants to bring down tyrants like Cersei Lannister and restore order to the realm, but in "The Bells", she takes the Iron Throne by completely torching King's Landing and killing thousands of innocent people, making her similar. In the series finale, Daenerys reveals she believes this is how they 'break the wheel' and how they build a better world.
  • Ship Tease:
    • With Daario Naharis from the end of Season 3 to Season 6 to the point that they become lovers. Unfortunately for him though she is only interested in him for his body and the two eventually part ways by the end of Season 6. She does tell Tyrion after the break-up that she thought she cared for him, but that when it came down to it she didn't feel much when she ended things, suggesting she may have been futilely hoping the relationship would become something more.
    • Come Season 7, she gets it again with Jon Snow before they eventually fall in love.
  • Shoulder-Sized Dragon: In early seasons, her newly hatched dragons are small enough to sit on her shoulder and she occasionally carries them this way. One problem of this trope is averted in that she wears an armoured spaulder on her shoulder. Of course, from Season 4 onwards the dragons get substantially bigger, to the point where she can now sit on their shoulders.
  • Shoulders of Doom: In Season 2, she wears a spaulder on one arm, which is more for practical purposes as it allows her to carry her baby dragons safely. Starting in Season 7, many of her outfits include large shoulder pads to make her seem more physically imposing; they also somewhat resemble a dragon's wings or spines.
  • Shrinking Violet: Starts out as one in Season 1. Having lived her life on the run and beneath the thumb of her abusive brother, she has little confidence in herself and a timid demeanor, trying to avoid setting Viserys off. However, over the course of the first season, she undergoes a transformation into a far more tough and assertive person.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: White-blonde hair and a disproportionate sense of entitlement is pretty much the only traits she shares with her brother.
  • Significant Wardrobe Shift: She starts wearing more black and red, her House colors, beginning at the end of Season 6, in contrast to her usual white and blue dresses in previous seasons, signifying the reaffirmation of her status as a Targaryen and conqueror as she begins her invasion of Westeros.
  • Silly Rabbit, Cynicism Is for Losers!: See Take a Third Option below.
  • Simple, yet Opulent: Many of her formal dresses are this; they're not overly fussy and some are in fact quite plain, but they are still obviously high quality.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: While Daenerys seems to gravitate towards lovers with a darker edge to them for the majority of the series, she eventually falls in love with the noble, earnest, and honourable Jon Snow over the course of Season 7.
  • Sins of Our Fathers: Particularly in Westeros, Daenerys faces the problem of being prejudged as the daughter of the Mad King, a delusional tyrant who murdered anyone who disagreed with him and would've burnt all of King's Landing to the ground. Robert Baratheon tried to have her assassinated despite her never doing anything to him personally out of hatred for her father (and her brother Rhaegar). She lampshades this almost word-for-word when she meets Jon Snow, asking him not to judge her based on her father's actions.
  • Slave Liberation: Following the death of Khal Drogo, she frees all of the slaves that remain in her khalasar. This escalates during the Sacking of Astapor, on a truly massive scale. And again not much later with the Sacking of Yunkai and Meereen.
  • Slavery Is a Special Kind of Evil: She comes to believe this with a vengeance by Season 3, after witnessing numerous atrocities committed against slaves or in the name of slavery, as well as experiencing firsthand what it's like to be sold and treated like property when Viserys trades her as a wife to Drogo with no care for her own feelings and wellbeing. She frees all the enslaved members of her khalasar before essentially declaring war on Slaver's Bay, conquering Astapor, Yunkai and Meereen to liberate the slaves. She views slave masters with utter disdain and has a hard time negotiating and compromising with them as a result.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Has this problem in Qarth during Season 2. After her name gets a lot bigger in Slaver's Bay, her ego fittingly becomes proportionate to her power.
  • Someone to Remember Him By: Jaime Lannister killed her father the Mad King while her mother was still pregnant with her, thus Daenerys was born fatherless.
  • Spanner in the Works: To the whole Game of Thrones, as per Varys, the original plan was for Dany to marry Khal Drogo in place of dragons to provide Viserys an army to take Westeros, but Dany's assimilation into the Dothraki, her supplanting of Viserys in their hearts and minds, and then finally her hatching three dragons upset all of his and everyone else's schemes. Nobody expected or predicted that Daenerys would do the things she did or become the great conqueror and liberator she has.
  • Squishy Wizard: Dany is a good Dragon Rider but she's not really trained for actual combat, thus making her vulnerable when not riding any of her dragons.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: With Jon Snow, for whom they are both each other's Second Loves. After they finally get together in the Season 7 finale, Season 8 sees what seems to be the everything in the entire world working against them. This eventually culminates in Dany going completely insane and burning King's Landing down to the ground, killing tens of thousands of innocent people in the process. Jon confronts her about this in the series finale and pleads with her to stop her destruction. However, when Daenerys shows no remorse and justifies this continued path as necessary to build her new world, even asking him to join her in her plans to Take Over the World, he reluctantly assassinates her during their Last Kiss to save everyone else, crying as she dies in his arms.
  • Stockholm Syndrome: After the death of Khal Drogo, she continues to speak his name with respect, and shows a great fondness and affection for his memory, seeming to forget that he was a savage marauder that fully supported rape, slavery, and senseless slaughter. He was basically the antithesis of everything Dany stands for but without his influence, she wouldn't be the woman who had made it back to her home shores. However, in Season Seven she does state that she was "raped", so it seems at least part of her did not accept or approve of all the things he did and the way he treated her.
  • The Stoic: For the most part, Dany tries to be as cool as ice when under duress. Though in Season 2 her band is at so much risk of both death and deception that she is reduced to aggressive pleading. Once she's the Queen of Meereen, Dany must emulate this more than ever before her subjects.
  • Stranger in a Familiar Land: Played with. All her life she has regarded Westeros as her home (despite being force to flee from there as a baby) and has dreamed of returning. However, upon finally reaching Westeros, she finds herself feeling out-of-place and unwelcome, especially in the North. She later remarks sadly to Jon that the wildlings look at him with adulation, an expression she herself has seen many times directed at her... but never in Westeros.
    Daenerys: I thought this was supposed to be a homecoming. It doesn't feel like home.
  • Stylish Protection Gear: She trades the light material dresses she wore in Essos for a much warmer but still stylish one in Season 7 to adapt to the Westerosi climate and since, well, "Winter is coming".
  • Superior Successor:
    • She's viewed as this for just about all the monarchs who have sat on the Iron Throne in the past two decades or so, not that this is particularly difficult. Her father Aerys wasn't called the Mad King for nothing, Robert was a drunk who left ruling to the small council, Joffrey was a "vicious idiot", Tommen was well-intentioned but too passive and easily manipulated and Cersei...well, let's just say if Joffrey inherited crazy from anyone, it was her. Daenerys is also a much nicer and more reasonable person than her brother Viserys, who was to everyone's belief the only other person ahead of her in the Targaryen succession, and she is sometimes compared to her late brother Rhaegar, who most people thought would've made a decent king. Varys encourages Tyrion to support her claim on account of the fact she's "stronger than Tommen but gentler than Stannis". Only time will tell if this proves true.
    • As of Season 8's "The Bells", it would seem this is not the case; she's just as bad a ruler as her predecessors, if not potentially worse.
  • Surprise Incest: She has sex with Jon Snow in "The Wolf and the Dragon", who is actually her nephew unbeknownst to them both. Upon learning the truth in Season 8, she seems more upset that this means Jon is ahead of her in the succession than the fact she slept with a blood relative; in fairness to her, incest is a common practice in her family (her own parents were siblings and she herself expected to marry her brother Viserys before he married her off to Drogo instead). This is one of the final straws in her Sanity Slippage because despite their love for each other, Jon is unable to return to their intimate relationship because it's incest.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • Season 4 is all about Dany realizing that killing slave masters is not enough to fix Slaver's Bay.
    • While the dragons were easy to control when they were still small, they've only become more dangerous and destructive the bigger they got. Chaining them up only seems to have made matters worse, as the dragons have grown aggressive even towards their mother...
    • In Season 5, the rest of the Free Cities are plotting against her as well since her disruption of the slave trade has caused economic turmoil and they're now are ready to strike at the first sign of weakness.
    • In Season 7, Daenerys's choice of allies quickly unites the otherwise fractured and squabbling denizens of the Seven Kingdoms against her, because she's allied herself with forces that have been demonized in Westeros for generations.
    • Likewise, her seeming advantages are swiftly eroded, because she puts her full trust in Tyrion's battle plans, who while being an excellent statesman is no real tactician; he admitted so himself to Cersei in Season 2!
    • Season 8 shows that while the people of Westeros needed Daenerys to fight the Night King, it never meant that she would eventually become their hero. Whether or not she is a better ruler than Cersei, Daenerys remains the Mad King's daughter, arrived from a foreign land to bring a new war or, in the case of the Northmen, take away the independence gained after so many sacrifices.
    • In a Freudian Slip, she mentions to Jon Snow that she was raped as part of the indignities she suffered: even if she did grow to care for Khal Drogo during their marriage, it would have been hard for her to forget or brush aside the callously indifferent roughness with which he consummated their marriage, not to mention those first weeks of her husband *ahem* "taking his rights".
  • Symbol Motif Clothing: Some of her more intricately woven garments represent the scaled hides of her family's sigil, such as her Dothraki riding top and aquamarine wrap dress.
  • Take a Third Option: Jorah says that Dany needs the Unsullied, not just because they're incredibly badass but because they don't rape or sack. Barristan disapproves of using slave soldiers, believing that a leader's subjects and soldiers should follow her not because they must but because they choose to. Both agree that Dany should not trade one of her dragons for the slave army. Her solution? Take command of the Unsullied. Kill the slave masters, one of them by fire from the very dragon she just sold him. And free the Unsullied, making them triply undyingly loyal to her than they would have been had she simply owned them.
    • She becomes pretty good at doing this, with her latest feat occurring in Season 7, Episode 4. While both Tyrion and Jon advised that she should not use Dragons to burn down cities and civilians willy-nilly, there was nothing they said that prevented her from reducing entire armies to ash, as Cersei's army later found out the hard way.
  • Take Over the World: In the Grand Finale, after having "liberated" King's Landing from the Lannister regime, she makes a speech about wanting to liberate the rest of the Known World beyond Westeros, including Qarth, the North and other places "under oppression". Of course, that would mean bringing them under her heel and she tells Jon that none of them have a choice.
  • Teen Pregnancy: She was only seventeen when she got pregnant with Rhaego and when she 'births' her three dragons. This is considered relatively normal in the setting. From the books...
  • Tempting Fate: In Season 7, she remarks that she would be perfectly safe with her dragons, because they're some of the most fearsome creatures on the planet and she can't think of anything that could harm them. During the Battle of the Goldroad, Drogon is injured by a ballista bolt; although he recovers quickly, it was still a close call and shows that the dragons aren't as indestructible as she previously thought. This is solidified near the end of the season when the Night King manages to kill Viserion with an ice spear, at which point she finally realizes just how dangerous the White Walkers are. Come Season 8, and one of Qyburn's scorpions actually does manage to take down Rhaegal.
  • Terror Hero: When diplomacy fails, she relies on her dragons and Badass Army to intimidate her enemies; she wins the second siege of Meereen by merely burning a few of the Masters' ships with her dragons in front of them, prompting their soldiers to flee. This is particularly demonstrated in Season 7's "The Spoils of War". When the Lannister-Tarly army sees the Dothraki charging at them, they're nervous, but stand their ground. When they hear an approaching roar and then suddenly see Daenerys flying out of the clouds atop a dragon? They're terrified. Deconstructed in Season 8, when Dany realizes that the people she wants to rule over are terrified of her too. She eventually decides that fear is the only way she can win the throne, Jumping Off the Slippery Slope in the process.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil: Implied to be the case in Season 8's "The Bells". No matter what she does and how much she sacrifices, she can't seem to win over the people of Westeros. She points out that they all love Jon far more than her and all she seems to be able to inspire in them is fear. As the last of her sanity slips away, she decides that fear will have to do.
  • There Are No Therapists: Some of the events in Season 8 push Daenerys to her Sanity Slippage but there are no mental health support systems in medieval Westeros. The successive losses of her longtime companion Jorah (in the war against the dead), best friend Missandei and her dragon Rhaegal (in her war against Cersei), as well as learning the truth about Jon's parentage (which results in Dany fearing that people will push Jon's better claim to the Iron Throne over her own while Jon is unable to continue their physically intimate relationship due to his discomfort about their Surprise Incest), result in Dany feeling isolated. Her fears about Jon's claim turn out to be correct because while Jon himself refuses the throne, Sansa breaks her vow to Jon to keep silent about his parentage in belief Jon would be a better choice than Dany and she tells Dany's Hand Tyrion, who tells Dany's advisor Varys. Believing Dany to be growing more unstable, Varys betrays Dany to replace her with Jon, and Dany resigns herself to the people's fear over their love in the penultimate episode. If Dany had access to some counseling and was able to gain better coping strategies, she may not have broken while on the walls of King's Landing whereupon she decided to raze the city, after which she fell into the delusion that such actions are how one builds a better world.
  • They Just Dont Get It: Though advised she needed the support of noble houses to conquer Westeros because the tactics she used in Essos could not be used in Westeros since slavery doesn't exist, Daenerys kept believing that earning the common people's favor was the key to retake the Iron Throne when she needed the support of noble houses. Though the Westerosi common people are oppressed in many areas, they only care about surviving, did not know Daenerys, and had been damaged by the wars for power waged by nobles — most recently by the War of the Five Kings fought between Joffrey Baratheon, Robb Stark, Renly Baratheon, Stannis Baratheon, and Balon Greyjoy. However, Daenerys still seemed to expect the nobles and smallfolk to support her claim to the Iron Throne upon her arrival based on her name — which wasn't terribly popular in Westeros and wasn't exactly made better by her use of dragonfire.
    • In "Cripples, Bastards, and Broken Things"Jorah Mormont explains her how common people don't care who is their ruler as long as it doesn't make their life more miserable than it is.
    • In "Hardhome" she discusses with Tyrion about Westeros and she still expects that by only earning the common people's favor she will be able to conquer the Iron Throne, basically without realizing how common people are the first to be damaged during war.
    • In "The Last of the Starks" Tormund and many other cheer Jon Snow and not her and she reacts as if no one has ever warned her of this outcome.
  • Tomboyish Ponytail: Most of Dany's hairstyles in Season 7 — the season where she's become more proactive as a Dragon Rider — have all of her hair tied back in some way.
  • Took a Level in Badass:
    • Time only empowers a dragon and her antagonists begin to learn it the hard way. She gradually gets free of her brother's dominance and outgrows her more prudent advisers. Her badassery rises multiple levels when she awesomely masterminds and leads the Sacking of Astapor and the Conquest of Meereen.
    • Embraces her family's words in Season 6, burning down a temple full of khals to assume leadership of the Dothraki, then riding Drogon into battle to torch the slavers' navy, likewise leading the Dothraki against the Lannister-Tarly army aboard dragon-back then later facing-off against the White Walkers themselves.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass:
    • Downplayed. Though she remains one of the show's nicer characters and has good intentions, she has become increasingly hardened and ruthless, even bordering on callous at times, in her pursuit of the Iron Throne due to her experiences. While still quite idealistic, she's also grown also more suspicious of others and pragmatic in her methods for similar reasons.
    • Takes a huge level in jerkass in "The Bells", refusing to accept Cersei's surrender and setting King's Landing on fire purely out of a warped sense of justice towards the rival queen.
  • Tragic Bromance: She and Missandei developed a close friendship over the course of their travels together. So close, in fact, that Missandei's murder helps fuel Daenerys's descent into madness and she goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge in the next episode.
  • Tragic Dream:
    • Her dream of 'breaking the wheel' and creating a better world for people. After going off the rails, she becomes convinced that only conquering people and forcing them into submission will create this new, better world, which clearly isn't going to work. Jon is forced to kill her after he's unable to make her see reason, although her dream is partially realized posthumously when the protagonists create an elective monarchy with a focus on justice and serving the people.
    • Her lifelong longing for a home, family and place to belong. She's always regarded Westeros as her true home and could never settle anywhere else, also having to move constantly as a child. When she finally reaches Westeros however, she still feels a disconnect to the place, is met with distrust and hostility and becomes increasingly isolated. Her actions in "The Bells" destroy any chance of her being accepted in Westeros and she ultimately never really felt like she belonged anywhere. Jon is the only family she has left and though he loves her, their intimate relationship is strained because of their blood relation. Finally, Daenerys's massacre of King's Landing and her resolve that this is the way to bring about a 'better' world ultimately results in Jon having to kill her to save Westeros.
  • Tragic Keepsake: Her mother, Queen Rhaella's, silver dragon-headed motif ring, which she wears almost constantly on her left index finger. note 
  • Tragic Mistake:
    • Perhaps if Daenerys had stayed in Essos, she'd have avoided her eventual Face–Heel Turn and find what she'd believe she'd find in Westeros: a throne and a way to better a part of the world while having the approval of the smallfolk, the Undying Loyalty of her followers, and retaining the companionship of close friends, with all three of her dragons alive. However, Daenerys was determined to retake her family's throne. When Daenerys arrived in Westeros, she found she was not welcomed by the people the same way she was by the slaves she liberated in Essos and her arrival did not feel like the homecoming she was expecting. The plans devised by advisors failed her again and again, costing her allies and resulting in the death of one of her dragons. She was met with wariness and mistrust by the common people and nobles alike due to her Targaryen heritage. Even her large part in defeating the Night King, wherein humanity is effectively saved, did not improve her standing with the people. After losing a long-time confidant to the Night King, another dragon in an ambush by Euron Greyjoy, witnessing her best friend's beheading by Cersei, facing betrayal from her advisor Varys, while her Second Love is unable to continue their physical intimacy due to their Surprise Incest, Daenerys succumbs to her grief and rage, performing a Face–Heel Turn in which she massacres a city full of surrendered people she had once come to save. Now of the mind that Utopia Justifies the Means, Daenerys declares war on the world and decides further destruction is the way to build a good world, refusing her love's pleas for mercy on behalf of the people. As a result, she faces a final betrayal wherein the man she loves reluctantly assassinates her to stop her destruction and her Westerosi reign ends in disaster and grief.
    • If Daenerys could only accept the surrender of King's Landing or even afterward, be receptive to Jon's pleas of mercy for the people, she could have had a chance to rule Westeros and be the queen she once strived to be.
  • Tragic Stillbirth: Near the end of Season 1, her son Rhaego is stillborn as a result of the Blood Magic ritual Mirri Maz Duur carried out to save his father's life. According to Mirri, Rhaego came out looking like a monster, with scales and wings, and when she touched him his skin fell away from his bones (likely a result of the spell). Rhaego's death reportedly paid for Drogo's life... only for Daenerys to learn that although alive, her husband has been left in a vegetative state. Worse still, Daenerys is left incapable of having any more children (at least according to Mirri). She gets revenge on her by burning her on Drogo's funeral pyre and using her death to magically hatch her dragons, whom she views as her children. Although Daenerys rarely mentions Rhaego after this, she is clearly still affected by his death. In Season 2, she is nearly tempted to stay in the House of the Undying after encountering a vision of Drogo and Rhaego still alive. She is also very protective of her dragons as they are "the only children [she] will ever have."
  • Tragic Villain: Dany begins the series as a slave liberator and wanting to return home to reclaim the Iron Throne to be a just ruler. Unfortunately, she suffers major losses after the other in the final two seasons, causing her to snap in the penultimate episode of the series to become the True Final Boss.
  • Trail of Bread Crumbs: During the Season 5 finale, Daenerys drops her mother’s ring to lead Jorah and Daario to her when she is taken by a Dothraki Khalasar.
  • Trauma Conga Line:
    • Season 1 is almost like an extended Trauma Conga Line for her — on top of her crappy childhood — the end of which forges her into the iron-willed Determinator she is in the following seasons. At just seventeen she is married off against her will to Khal Drogo, the leader of a group of people who live for Rape, Pillage, and Burn. Initially, he barely pays attention to her except to roughly have sex with her and she struggles at first to adapt to Dothraki culture, while her jerk brother makes it very clear he doesn't care how she's treated as long as he gets his crown. Viserys' cruelty to her reaches the point that he publicly threatens to cut her baby from her womb, after which she finally gives up on him and doesn't stop Drogo from gruesomely killing him. She is then almost poisoned in a crowded marketplace despite being surrounded by guards and companions. And then, just as she's managed to build a relatively happy relationship with her husband, is due to give birth any day and is a step closer to achieving her goal of retaking the Iron Throne, it all gets stripped away by a witch she had unwisely trusted and tried to show kindness to; Drogo is left vegetative due to blood magic she had hoped would save him, the same magic causes her baby to be stillborn and renders her infertile, most of Drogo's tribe abandon her in a wasteland and she is forced to smother Drogo to put him out of his misery.
    • In Season 2, she must lead her remaining followers across the Red Waste where many of them die and is forced to beg and threaten to be given shelter in Qarth. There, one of her trusted handmaidens betrays her, helping kill more of her followers and steal her three beloved dragons. She ventures alone into the House of the Undying to save them and is nearly trapped there forever. Luckily, it all works out relatively okay in the end and further strengthens her resolve.
    • In Season 7, Daenerys loses many of her Westerosi allies in quick succession and one of her dragons is killed and zombified by the Night King. In Season 8, she finds out that Jon Snow, the man she has come to love, is actually her nephew and has a better claim to the throne she has worked all her life to reclaim. She also loses a lot of her army fighting the army of the dead and has finally has Ser Jorah, her oldest and most trusted friend, die in her arms, leaving her sobbing over his body. And then in the very next episode, yet another of her dragons is killed and her close friend Missandei is beheaded in front of her. And then one of her advisors begins plotting to undermine her while she's grieving. It is this that finally pushes her over the edge and she unleashes fiery death on King's Landing.
  • True Blue Femininity: Despite her house colors being black and red, she occasionally wears blue and white outfits, even if her behavior doesn't always conform to what those tropes symbolize. This is undoubtedly because of the hot climate of Eastern Essos by the Gulf of Grief which is where she wears her blue riding outfit and gown that is associated with her conquest of Meereen.
  • True Final Boss: She ultimately becomes the story's final Big Bad after the White Walkers and dealt with and Jon is forced to assassinate her to save Westeros.
  • Try to Fit That on a Business Card: Daenerys of the House Targaryen, the First of her Name, Queen of the Andals, the First Men and the Rhoynar. Lady Regnant of the Seven Kingdoms, Protector of the Realm, Defender of the Faith, Princess of Dragonstone, Queen of Meereen, Liberator of Astapor and Yunkai, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Called Stormborn, the Unburnt, the Breaker of Chains and the Mother of Dragons.
  • Turn Out Like His Father: Much as Tyrion faces prejudice for being a dwarf, Dany faces the stigma of being "The Mad King's Daughter", with both friends and allies worried that she will turn out to be another Aerys II. About the only thing she and her father have in common is using fire as a weapon. Until Season 8, that is.
  • Tyrannicide:
    • In Season 3, she orchestrates the death of Kraznys and several other Good Masters in Astapor, with the goal of freeing their long-suffering slaves and putting an end to their brutal Unsullied programme. She's seen as a heroic figure by the freed slaves and Unsullied for this.
    • In the penultimate episode of the series, she causes Cersei's death during the Battle of King's Landing. Unfortunately, in the process of doing so she proves herself to be not much better than Cersei.
  • Übermensch: Daenerys is a rare female example of this. In her travels, she departs and violates the norms of not only her Westerosi upbringing, but that of the Dothraki (such as talking to a witch and using blood magic), radically alters and reshapes the existing society as per own norms and subjects herself to no one's authority but her own moral code:
    Daenerys: I spent my life in foreign lands. So many men have tried to kill me, I don’t remember all their names. I have been sold like a broodmare, I’ve been chained and betrayed, raped and defiled. Do you know what kept me standing through all those years in exile? Faith. Not in any gods, not in myths and legends. In myself. In Daenerys Targaryen. The world hadn't seen a dragon in centuries, until my children were born. The Dothraki hadn't crossed the sea, any sea. They did for me. I was born to rule the Seven Kingdoms, and I will.
  • Uncatty Resemblance: One of her dresses in Season 7 is a red-and-black dress with dragonlike scales and spikes that resembles Drogon.
  • Underestimating Badassery: Whether due to her own guile or their foolishness, people who underestimate her and slight her or try to manipulate her end up dead, often in gruesome fashion. By the time she gets to Yunkai her reputation has begun to precede her and they offer her ships and gold if she leaves them in peace, though by the time her meeting with Razdal ends it turns out they haven't learned enough.
  • Unexpected Successor: To the Targaryen dynasty. Granted, the only real competition left was Viserys due to most of them getting killed off during Robert's Rebellion, but pretty much no one expected the seemingly harmless youngest child and only daughter of the Mad King to bring the Targaryens Back from the Brink and give them their best chance of reclaiming the Iron Throne.
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: Daenerys has the most varied outfits of all the actresses on the show, partly on account of her blending in with different people's cultures. She's worn the silks of the Free Cities, Dothraki garb, Qartheen dresses, styles of her own making, and even some exotic furs.
  • Unfit for Greatness: Struggles with this throughout the latter half of the show. She is fundamentally compassionate and well-meaning, but she also tends to have a rather black-and-white view of things and doesn't always think through the long-term consequences of her decisions. She struggles to keep the peace in Slaver's Bay while not compromising her vision, and accidentally makes some things worse (one of the biggest examples is conquering Slaver's Bay and freeing the slaves, but then realizing this led to near-instant economic collapse and leaves a power vacuum for either self-serving freedmen or the old Masters to seize control). In Season 8, her unbalanced mental state and desire for vengeance ultimately override her good intentions and she burns down King's Landing with Drogon, even deluding herself into believing this is the only way to achieve her vision of a 'better' world. On the other hand, she is eventually successful in stopping the slave trade and establishing some kind of peace and order in Slaver's Bay and helps save the world from the White Walkers.
  • Unstable Powered Woman: For most of the show, Daenerys shows that while she's not a perfect leader, she knows the horrors of the downtrodden and is willing to listen and compromise with her advisers. Come season 8, when the Iron Throne is within her grasp, she snaps and razes King's Landing after the deaths of two of her beloved dragons, causing the deaths of thousands of innocents and forcing Tyrion and Jon to kill her.
  • Unwitting Pawn: To Varys in Season 1. It's revealed that he has been plotting to put Viserys back on the throne for some time and had worked with Illyrio Mopatis to help broker a marriage alliance of sorts between the Targaryens and Khal Drogo: Dany would be given as a wife to Drogo in exchange for an army of Dothraki warriors, with whom Viserys would retake the Seven Kingdoms. However, Dany and Viserys both go off-script when the former manages to successfully integrate herself with the Dothraki and wins their respect, while the latter repeatedly antagonizes them to the point that his brother-in-law kills him for threatening a pregnant Dany before he even gets his army. Upon learning of Varys' plan in Season 7, Dany calls him out on it, criticizing him for treating her like a broodmare and for backing Viserys even though he must've had an inkling of what sort of person he was.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: In Season 1, she was a kind and timid teenage girl with a hidden steeliness. Come Season 8, she's a vengeful tyrant who will do anything to claim the Iron Throne.
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: She's content with burning cities to the ground if it means that her subjects will no longer have to face tyranny... Or rather, tyranny that's not by her own hand. In the end, her dream of making a better world is realized through Bran Stark and his court.
  • Villainous Breakdown: In "The Bells", after everything she has lost, even when the Lannister forces in King's Landing surrender, Daenerys refuses to accept it and has Drogon set the city ablaze and her soldiers massacre everyone in its walls. Presumably, if her rightful subjects won't kneel out of loyalty to her, they'll cower in terror of her.
  • Visionary Villain: Even after her Face–Heel Turn, Daenerys is still focused on 'breaking the wheel' and ending tyranny, truly believing she "liberated" the people of King's Landing from the tyrant Cersei when she killed them. And she wants to continue this not just in the Seven Kingdoms, but across the entire world. Of course, it's strongly indicated she plans to do this with 'Fire and Blood'.
  • Wants a Prize for Basic Decency:
    • According to Mirri Maz Duur. For context, she thought keeping Mirri under her personal protection would stop her from reducing Drogo to an Empty Shell by sacrificing her unborn baby after her khalasar ravaged her home and killed so many of her people
      Daenerys: I spoke for you. I saved you.
      Mirri Maz Duur: Saved me? Three of those riders had already raped me before you saved me, girl. I saw my god's house burn. There, where I had healed men and women beyond counting. In the streets I saw piles of heads. The head of a baker, who makes my bread. The head of a young boy, that I had cured of a fever just three moons past. So, tell me again exactly what it was that you saved...?
    • This shows up again in Season 8 when she expects the Northerners to immediately bow to her because she's there to help fight the Long Night and Jon has pledged himself to her, but although she refers to it as Jon's war, the truth is that if Daenerys ignored the approaching threat of the White Walkers like Cersei and took King's Landing first, it would end up All for Nothing anyway because the Walkers would still come for her, and with much greater numbers after conquering everything North of King's Landing, to boot.
  • We Can Rule Together: After Jon tries and fails to convince Dany to show mercy and not continue down this path of destruction, Dany tries to convince Jon her actions are good and urges him to rule at her side, saying they can work together to make the world a 'better place' from the ashes and only the two of them can decide what is good. She actually appears to be completely sincere, truly believing this is the way they break the wheel and her destruction is necessary. Upon seeing she is wholly resolved to continuing down this path, a distraught Jon tells her she'll always be his queen and they kiss... when Jon fatally stabs her, weeping over Dany's body as she dies in his arms.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: She's fundamentally heroic and genuinely wants to abolish slavery, but as she continues her quest she's also starting to become more and more ruthless in her methods. She becomes this trope fully in Season 8's penultimate episode.
  • The Women Are Safe with Us: Though aware of the measures and consequences of conquest, Dany still tries to counter the excess 'spoils' of war by acquiring eunuch warriors as the main core of her infantry, all of whom are incapable of rape. And before that, it was her wish to keep female captives safe from her husband's own men when they crushed a small village to take the populace as slaves. However, it is unlikely that Dany will ever be able to enforce this if she bands together a large myriad force of many cultures to march on Westeros.
  • The Wonka: Downplayed in the sense that she's not overtly eccentric in her behaviour, but Daenerys is sometimes known to do things many people would find irrational or bizarre that have worked out extremely well for her. For example, everyone thinks she's been driven mad with grief when she fearlessly walks into Drogo's funeral pyre, but she is certain she'll survive because she has observed her apparent immunity to heat damage (though there's a big difference between hot baths and an actual inferno) and she also figures out she can hatch her dragons this way, even though the eggs are supposedly fossilized and only she can sense life in them. And then there's walking right up to an angry dragon, climbing on its back and commanding it to fly. As Tormund states in Season 8, only "a madman" would do something like that... and Dany subsequently became the first person to ride a dragon in over a century.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: After everything she has lost and suffered, culminating in almost everyone close to her either dying horribly, betraying her, or no longer being able to return her romantic affections, Daenerys snaps and goes full Mad Queen on King's Landing, burning everything in sight and destroying the Red Keep with Cersei in it.
  • World's Most Beautiful Woman: Out of the thousands of brides the mighty Khal Drogo could have selected as a tribute from the Nine Free Cities; he chooses the Targaryen Princess to be his Khaleesi. Doreah even makes an oblique comparison to Dany and a famous Lysene sex goddess, Irogenia and the lengths that men might go to obtain her. It's not helped by the fact that it's heavily implied that Ser Jorah Mormont switches to her side primarily because of his attraction to her and later, Daario Naharis does much the same; willing to kill his own fellow captains to serve her because he was entranced by her pulchritude. Xaro offers her marriage at his reception, their second meeting mind you and Euron Greyjoy would build "the greatest armada the world has ever seen" to offer her as a wedding gift. He even implies that his goal is still to marry the "most beautiful woman in the world" when he's trying to schmooze up to Cersei... Finally, both Jon Snow and Davos Seaworth are so awed by her presence that they become speechless and intimidated.
    Varys to Daenerys: Until your marriage to Khal Drogo, Your Grace, I knew nothing about you save your existence and that you were said to be beautiful.
  • Worthy Opponent: Out of everyone she's had turned to ashes and carbon; she seems disquieted at losing Lord Randyll Tarly's allegiance and acumen as a commander. Even proclaiming that she respects how he will not trade his honour for his life.
  • Would Not Shoot a Civilian: Daenerys is reluctant to use her army and dragons to burn down enemy cities if it means hurting innocent civilians. She only considers it in Season 6 and 7 when she's in some truly dire situations and she is quickly talked out of it by either Tyrion and/or Jon. It's mentioned that if Daenerys took her forces to King's Landing, she could win the war against Cersei quite easily, but she won't because she doesn't want to be "queen of the ashes". Subverted in Season 8 when she set's King's Landing ablaze and leads her armies in a wholesale massacre of the civilian population.
  • Wouldn't Hurt a Child: When Daenerys seizes control of Astapor, she explicitly orders the Unsullied not to harm any children. She is quietly enraged by the Great Masters of Meereen crucifying over a hundred slave children purely to try and intimidate her, responding by crucifying the same number of Masters once she takes over Meereen. She also cites the Masters mutilating young boys and turning little girls into prostitutes as one of the reasons she despises them so much. Upon learning Drogon killed a young Meereenese girl, she is so distraught she chains her own dragons to keeps her subjects safe. Subverted in Season 8; following her Sanity Slippage she burns down King's Landing, killing children in the process.
  • You Killed My Father: Towards Jaime Lannister when they formally meet for the first time in "A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms", even though she now knows her father probably deserved what he got (her main concern seems to be around Jaime potentially posing a threat to herself because of his history with her family). However, she's persuaded by Jon and Sansa to let Jaime fight with them after Brienne vouches for him.
    Daenerys: When I was a child, my brother would tell me a bedtime story. About the man who murdered our father. Who stabbed him in the back and cut his throat. Who sat down on the Iron Throne and watched as his blood poured onto the floor. He told me other stories as well. About all the things we would do to that man once we took back the Seven Kingdoms and had him in our grasp.
  • Young and in Charge: At seventeen, she's the leader of a small band of Dothraki. By her early twenties, she's Queen of Meereen (and by extension the rest of Slaver's Bay), commands a large army, is the 'great khaleesi' of the Dothraki and aspires to become Queen of the Seven Kingdoms.
  • Young Conqueror: Is bent on becoming one. She struggles at first, since she has no transportation, only a handful of followers and three helpless, infant dragons. After gaining the Unsullied she becomes a genuine threat, outright sacking one slaver city, forcing another to surrender and causing the largest in the region to yield to her. A Deconstructed Trope, as she has left two cities in worse conditions than they were before she got there. Her refusal to listen to her advisers has also resulted in problems arising in Meereen. However, unlike most examples, Daenerys is willing to learn from her mistakes and take responsibility for her actions.


Video Example(s):


Daenerys' final speech

Having laid siege to King's Landing, Daenerys Targaryen declares to the Unsullied and the Dothraki that having "liberated" King's Landing, they will move on to the entire world.

How well does it match the trope?

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Example of:

Main / NewEraSpeech

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