Sunday marks the end of the series for the hit HBO show “Game of Thrones.” However the names of those characters who may or may not have survived to the end of the series will live on in the names that parents have gifted their children over the past few years.
The Social Security Administration estimates that there were 2,545 babies were born with the name Arya. It was actually the 119th most popular name in the United Sates. In 2018 there were 560 baby girls given the name Khaleesi. Those parents may be questioning the wisdom of making that choice this week after the viewing of “The Bells,” the second to last episode of the “Game of Thrones” series. IF YOU HAVEN’T WATCHED IT YET AND CARE TO DO SO WITHOUT SPOILERS, get it together already and watch the show. We’re done tiptoeing around you. (SPOILERS AHEAD)
Up to this point Daenerys has been the ultimate example of the strong, kind, idealistic, young woman that should be admired. Plus using her full name of “Daenerys of the House Targaryen, the First of Her Name, The Unburnt, Queen of the Andals, the Rhoynar and the First Men, Queen of Meereen, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Protector of the Realm, Lady Regent of the Seven Kingdoms, Breaker of Chains and Mother of Dragons” is a bit excessive even for the biggest fan of the show. So Khaleesi it is. So after the events of “The Bells” some of these parents are questioning the wisdom of their choice.
The brutality of the battle at Kings Landing was as swift and complete despite an elite infantry and effective naval force and substantial anti-air artillery of the Lannister forces. The fact that I believe she never intended to call off the attack at the sounding of the bells as Tyrion had begged her to do. As Jon rejected her romantic advance which could have been the “last straw” before deciding the fate of King’s Landing. In fact after watching it again, I saw more signs that she was determined from the onset to instill the ultimate fear in those who would oppose her, killing tens of thousands of innocent citizens, and for some ruining her image as the benevolent ruler they had sought for the seven kingdoms. (For a strategic look at the battle and burning of King’s Landing, see this article from Robert Farley.)
So, now what about the parents of little Kahleesi of the playground in the good old USA? They were decidedly shocked at the actions of the character. Shocked and disappointed, to say the least.
Jasmine Estrada has a six-year-old that she named Khaleesi. The mother spoke to the Daily Beast about how she is feeling about the name. She stated, “I’m kind of in shock. It was kind of disappointing that her power trip took over. That was not cool.” Does she regret her name choice? She stands by the decision but says the name is now “bittersweet.”
Dre Campbell of Tacoma, Washington has a school aged daughter with the name. In the online publication of The Ringer he stated that, “I did feel a type of way, If I’m being honest, when I was first watching it,” Campbell says. “When the bell sounded and she was still going in and burning all the people, I was like, ‘Oh my god, wow.’” But Campbell says that the term “Khaleesi” is just far enough removed from Daenerys’s actual name that it doesn’t seem like a problem. “I didn’t name my daughter Daenerys, I named her after the queen,” he says. He jokes that #NotAllKhaleesis are like their namesake.
The 560 parents of other Khaleesis born last year, as well as the moms and dads of the 19 Caleesis and five Khaleesies, are probably feeling the same way about now.