ASOIAF: Brynden Rivers – Bloodraven (Focus Series – Book Spoilers)


Born the illegitimate son of King Aegon IV
and his 6th mistress Melissa Blackwood in 175 AC, Brynden Rivers developed a distinctive
look among his siblings, with pale white skin, long white hair, red eyes and a wine-stain
birthmark on his neck and cheek, which many came to believe resembled a raven drawn in
blood. And while Bloodraven, was not as tall or muscular as his many male siblings, he
proved a valiant warrior, wielding the Valyrian steel sword Dark Sister and developed into
an expert archer, eventually commanding his own company of bowman known as Raven’s Teeth.
Despite his illegitimacy, he maintained good relations with the Targaryen Court in King’s
Landing, yet he became the bitterest of enemies to his own half brother Aegor Rivers, with
animosity and resentment built into their relationship from the very beginning.
Aegor, was the son of King Aegon’s 5th mistress Barba Bracken, who had been sent away from
King’s Landing in a scandal, replaced by Melissa Blackwood, a woman of a rival house
and the mother of Brynden Rivers. Melissa was so well liked by the court, that even
after she was replaced by a 7th mistress, her son bloodraven was allowed to remain in
King’s Landing. Aegor’s resentment only grew when he became
infatuated with his half sister Shierra Seastar, only to see her develop a relationship with
Brynden Rivers. The animosity between the two would grow over
time leading to a lifelong hatred that would have drastic repercussions for all of Westeros.
In 184 AC, King Aegon IV made a final decree on his deathbed, legitimizing all of his bastard
children, a drastic proclamation, that would raise questions about the succession and open
the door to rebellion. Brynden Rivers, one of King Aegon’s Great
Bastards, now a legitimate son of the former king, would come to serve the heir, his half
brother King Daeron II, taking up a seat on his small council. And when the realm fractured
and went to war, with Daemon of House Blackfyre, another of the legitimized bastards of Aegon
IV, rebelled against the crown, declaring himself king and the rightful heir to the
iron throne, Bloodraven remained loyal to House Targaryen. At the Battle of the Redgrass
field, he lost an eye fighting his hated brother Aegor Rivers, also known as Bittersteel, who
had sided with House Blackfyre. Yet despite his injury, Bloodraven was able to lead Raven’s
Teeth in capturing an area known as Weeping Ridge, and from rained a barrage of arrows
down on Daemon Blackfyre and his son’s, killing them and ending the First Blackfyre Rebellion.
For this action, Brynden was labelled a kinslayer, adding to his already sinister reputation,
with many believing he was a sorcerer and spymaster. A song was even composed about
him, called A Thousand Eyes and One, referring to his one good eye and the thousand eyes
of his many informants. Although Daemon Blackfyre was defeated, Aegor
Rivers survived, escaping with Daemon’s surviving children to Essos, where they would
prepare for their next attempt to replace House Targaryen with House Blackfyre.
In 209 AC, Brynden Rivers was named Hand of the King under his nephew King Aerys I and
would serve for many years facing a number of devastating challenges.
The first major crisis would be great spring sickness which killed Aerys father king daeron
II and thousands of others. With King’s Landing suffering the worst of the illness,
seeing 4 of every 10 residents killed by the plague. In response, Bloodraven ordered that
the bodies of dead be gathered in the Dragon Pit and burned with wildfire until the sickness
at last receded in 210 AC. Yet even as the illness abated, another crisis
emerged, when King’s Landing and much of the surrounding area suffered a terrible drought,
causing many farmers to abandon their work and seek refuge in other parts of the continent.
Bloodraven ordered that the farmers stay on their lands, but few obeyed, and the mass
migration of people increased banditry and theft on the roads.
In 211 AC Dagon Greyjoy and his ironborn fleet began raiding the western coast, attacking
various sites in the reach. The Starks of the North gathered their banners in response
determined to defend their coastline, while the Lannisters of the Westerlands constructed
a fleet to repel their forces. In the capital, Bloodraven had his own worries,
knowing that Aegor Rivers and his Blackfyre rebels were in Tyrosh, eager to invade from
the east and capture the throne. Although many suffered during Dagons raids,
the Targaryens eventually got involved and the Ironborn retreated to their islands.
In the same year the riverlands faced war, with House Blackwood threatening to go to
war with their traditional enemies in House Bracken. Many wished for the Hand of the King
to intervene, but because his mother was a Blackwood, the Bracken’s believed he would
not be a fair arbiter. Yet even during all these challenges, Bloodraven
proved focused on what he considered the greatest threat facing the realm. Learning that Daemon
Blackfyre II was at the Tournament of Whitewalls, gathering support for a second blackfyre rebellion,
he marched to the event with an army, and swiftly arrested the man, defeating his rebellion
before it began. Years later in 219 AC a third Blackfyre rebellion
would see Aegor the Golden Company invade the continent to proclaim Daemon Targaryen’s
fourth son Haegon as the true king of Westeros. The war would see Brynden Rivers once again
fighting in single combat against Bittersteel his hated halfbrother, but in the end, House
Blackfyre was again defeated, with Aegor Rivers arrested, and the would be King Haegon killed.
Although Bloodraven advocated execution for the rebel leader, but he was overruled by
King Aerys I, who sparred his life and banished him to the night’s watch.
Yet the Golden Company remained free and loyal to Bittersteel and House Blackfyre, and so
they attacked the ship carrying their leader to the Wall, and rescued him, taking him to
Tyrosh where he crowned Haegon’s son Daemon Blackfyre III as the true king of Westeros,
biding his time for another invasion. In 233AC Brynden Rivers called for a great
council to decide the matter of succession following the death of Maekar I. Aenys Blackfyre,
the fifth son of Daemon Blackfyre I, reached out to King’s Landing from across the narrow
sea and peacefully made his claim to the throne. Seeing an opportunity to deal another blow
to his hated enemies, Bloodraven extended an invitation to the man promising safe entrance
into King’s Landing so he might argue his case before the great council. Yet the hand
of the king had no intention of honoring that decree and as soon as Aenys entered the city
he was arrested and killed. Aegon V would inherit the throne and in order to protect
the reputation of the crown, his first act as King would be to arrest Brynden Rivers
for murder. Bloodraven was then given the option of joining
the night’s watch and so later that years sailed to the wall, along with 200 men who
would join the watch to serve as his honor guard, some of them veterans of Raven’s
Teeth. In 239 Brynden became Lord Commander and served
for many years, until disappearing in 252, having gone out on a ranging beyond the wall
and never returned. For over 60 years his fate would remain a
mystery to the people of westeros, until young Brandon Stark began to receive visions from
a mysterious 3 eyed crow, and travelled North of the wall with a number of companions, finding
the man once known as bloodraven, as an old decrepit man, living with the children of
the forest, watching the events of the south through his greenseer magic. Brynden Rivers
was the 3 eyed Crow, and he claimed to want to pass his knowledge onto bran, teaching
him to become one of the most powerful beings in the world.

100 thoughts on “ASOIAF: Brynden Rivers – Bloodraven (Focus Series – Book Spoilers)

  1. Being my favorite character in the books, his death in the show made me punch a wall, injuring my fist. R.I.P.

  2. Bran cost all of them their lives Blood raven, Hodor, Summer, rest in peace

  3. aw man just watched the ep, That was just so goddamn sad, Not gonna lie Ive been crying for the last 10 mins

  4. Can you please make a video about the man that Sam meets at Oldtown?That man with the obsidian candle?

  5. It's a shame they didn't acknowledge his real identity. I was hoping he'd give Dark Sister to Meera.

  6. no summer!! that makes the super pack less n less likely only ghost n nymeria are left will it still be a thing

  7. Can you please make a video about how total garbage the tv show is?

  8. if Brynden was legitimized we should be calling him Brynden Targaryen

  9. spoilers for ep five

    May he rest in peace the teacher of Bran savior of Bran not once but twice.

  10. It is very interesting how it turned out with Hodor,specialy because it comes directly from G.R.R.M.
    But i now find it very confusing,this means that Bran can affect the past?I don't really understant how it works and i can't make sense of it.This makes theories like Aerys the second became mad because Bloodraven possible,.What do you think?

  11. I think you forgot to mention Shiera Seastar among the Great Bastards at 0:31
    Other than that, Great Video. Love Bloodraven!

  12. SWEET!!! I did NOT know that back story. That was awesome!!
    The next important character is the other half-brother of Sansa who has reassembled the Tully army in the Riverlands. Can't think of his name but he seems like he has an interest back story.

  13. After the Hodor scene in the last episode, I have to admit it was one of the few times a series made me tear up. Losing Bloodraven, the goal of Bran's quest, and then Hodor, who has been an amazing simpleminded character, was simply too devastating.

  14. I thought the honor guard went to the wall with/for Aemon Targaryen who declined the throne.

  15. Yes. Thank you for this video. Been asking for a Focus on Brynden Rivers for a minute now.

  16. Where is the video about Robert and his bastards? I can't find it here.

  17. I still don't understand what the heck he's been trying to teach Bran. So he knows how to warg through weirwoods now and see the past, that's about it. Is that all he needed to know? I feel like there was some other power he was supposed to teach him.

  18. Is there a video on the whole stuff that happened in the north 8000 years ago?
    construction of the wall, first WWs, nights king, etc

  19. I always found his life to be pretty interesting. How he became the 3 eyed crow

  20. Thanks for a dose of Bloodraven "realness". The show didn't play up or extrapolate about Byryden Rivers and his cool story, so it was sad to see him die on the show without his back story or his motivations…he was just a mysterious, powerful guy who'd been watching events from a tree for "a thousand years". Oh, and there is no "Dark Sister" to pass along in the show.
    I look forward to learning more about him in the books.

  21. I believe Bran will seek to find the three eyed raven but will only find Brendyn Rivers he will tell him to travel beyond the wall and wait for him

  22. In the show, Blooddraven said he has been waiting for "a thousand years" for Bran. But It looks like he is at most 150 years old… so is that a TB show mistake?

  23. He is a great misunderstood character, he may be quit cruel in some areas but his loyalty is anything but unsure , also has one of the most badass names of the series.
    here is my top five to give a clue:
    1. Conqueror ( Aegon the first)
    2. Black Dragon (Deamon Blackfyre)
    3. Bloodraven
    4. Bittersteel
    5. The Last Dragon (Rhaegar Targaryen)

  24. Dayum, House Black Fyre was badass! Would love to see them fight Targeryens again

  25. I just read "A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms" so this information is very welcome and I just love your voice! Please keep up the good work. Your to do list must be getting absurdly long by now🍻

  26. This characher was NOT nice person he is Kinslayer about three times over He killed Four nephews and his own brother. Then try to kill his other one BitterSteel. ps can you a Video about Bittersteel

  27. Bloodraven is friggin legendary the show killing him off the way they did I can't see it happening that way in ASOIAF.. The show version is a thousand and one years old lol

  28. Can you do something about the Tullys or about blackfish if there is lore enough. Love your vids

  29. BloodRaven is gone 🙁 but now Bran is going to possibly save the world as Azor Ahai 😀

  30. "How many eyes does Lord Bloodraven have? A thousand eyes, and one."

  31. I heard somewhere that blood raven fought alongside daemon in the rebellion but switched sides later on.

  32. I kind of feel bad for Aenys Blackfyre, he tried to become the king by peaceful means and was killed for it, who knows, he might have made a good king.

  33. So prob meera and bran will get married and she'll stimulate him and they'll beget a child that'll be like part stark, part crannogman, part children, part green seer, basically the sickest person that worlds seen, prob daenarys will meetup with John snow(daraeon targaryan, I think) and aegon targaryan his half brother and her nephew and they'll ride her dragons and burn and conquer all of Westeros, Yut!!!!

  34. lol why is aegor rivers still called rivers, if he was legitmized?? he should be aegor targaryen. Same with Bryden..

  35. Am I the only one who just discovered he is the three eyes raven???? Im astonished

  36. From his appearance and his actions I constantly think Brynden as female. In fact him being gay wouldn't surprise me at all.

  37. Image giving a man a kingdom only to be arrested. I'd have him murdered in his sleep. Ungrateful

  38. Bloodraven is NOT the 3 eyed crow.
    Read the chapter when Brandon meets Bloodraven.
    Bran says so you are the 3 eyed crow. He says, "Crow?! Once(meaning a brother of night's watch not the 3 eyed crow). And many other things.

  39. Bloodraven is honestly the coolest character in ASoIaF. Who can beat an Albino, Targaryan, bastard, wizard, master of whisperes, warg, greenseer, hand of the king and lord commander of the night's watch.

  40. Hold the door and oddly his Valyrian Steel weapon Dark Sister might have been taken by Meera Reed back to Greywater Watch via Winterfell and the Wall

  41. Love this guy he’s my favorite all time character. Wish we had a POV chapter with him in it, in the dunk and egg books.

  42. There is a mistake,at time the battle of the Redgrass Field Dorne was already in the Seven Kingdoms

  43. Rise up, I say, and remember our true king across the water.
    Seven gods there are, and seven kingdoms, and the Black Dragon sired seven sons!
    Rise up, my lords and ladies. Rise up, you brave knights and sturdy yeomen, and cast down Bloodraven,
    that foul sorcerer, lest your children and your children's children be cursed forevermore.

  44. Man, Bittersteel has a serious obsession with proclaiming Blackfyres the true kings of Westeros

  45. Every Blackfyre has a twisted honorable trait but honorable nonetheless.

  46. It's interesting that both Bloodraven and the Ghost of High Heart were albinos I guess it's a common trait among greenseers. Its also interesting that he served as Lord Commander for 13 years.

  47. My fathers name is Brendan, but I really like the spelling of Brynden. If I had a son, I wonder which version Id should pick. I've known some people with awkward or unusual names, and I always felt bad that they had to constantly correct people on the spelling or pronunciation there whole lives..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *