Rejoice, Game of Thrones fans, because Jon Snow and Ygritte were married this weekend! That’s right: Kit Harington and Rose Leslie tied the knot after almost six years of dating, and to make matters even sweeter, they did the deed in a castle!
In fairness, Leslie grew up in a castle and her family owns a few lovely ones across Scotland, so this is nothing new for the daughter of the Aberdeenshire Chieftain of the Clan Leslie. Only this time, the ensemble of Game of Thrones roamed the grounds. Isn’t it nice to know that a Game of Thrones-adjacent wedding didn't end in horrific bloodshed or a poisoning?
Leslie and Harington met while filming the massively popular series, and for fans of the show, it seemed too good to be true that Jon Snow and Ygritte's romance would manifest in the real world with a far sweeter outcome. It didn’t take long for Harington, usually described as a quiet introvert, to start gushing about how much he loved filming the second season of the show because it was where he and Leslie fell for one another.
"Because the country is beautiful, because the Northern Lights are magical, and because it was there that I fell in love. If you’re already attracted to someone, and then they play your love interest in the show, it becomes very easy to fall in love."
How could you not love them? It didn’t hurt that the pair had top notch chemistry on the series and they had plenty of opportunities to demonstrate it. Game of Thrones is jam packed with sex scenes and impromptu conversations in brothels, but for many, it was Jon and Ygritte who exhibited the most genuine passion.
Their flirtations were off the charts, and who didn’t like watching Ygritte tell Jon Snow he knew nothing? For a brief, glimmering moment, Game of Thrones had a beautiful romance. Well, until the arrows started firing and the show remembered that it was Game of Thrones. Still, the end of Ygritte didn’t mean the end of Kit and Rose. The pair kept their relationship mostly under wraps, but they weren't afraid to play up the love on talk shows, like the time Kit was pressured into proposing to Rose by none other than Nicole freaking Kidman. There was also the cringe-cute gem of Kit singing a pitchy version of "Wild Thing" called "Wildling" to Rose in a Comic Relief skit. Check out that wink!
For fans and shippers alike, there’s an undeniable thrill in seeing your two favorite characters get together, and even the most ardent cynic can’t contest the similar sensation of seeing the actors who embody those parts finding love off screen too. Game of Thrones isn’t a show with romance at its focus. When it does happen, it’s inevitably disastrous or mired in rape, incest (or both), and backstabbing betrayals. Not that Ygritte and Jon avoid such pitfalls — and her death is one of the show’s real tear-jerking moments — but it’s still a comfort to know that darkness can lead to light, both on and off the small screen.
It’s all very fanficcy, if we do say so ourselves. And Rose and Kit have as many RPF shippers as their characters do. The fanfic tends to follow the dynamics of Jon and Ygritte— she’s more assertive, he’s the puppy-faced naïve boy in love, the sex is super graphic, and so on. As is befitting Game of Thrones fandom, a lot of the fic is pretty emotionally bleak, but there’s still plenty of happy-ever-afters in there.
Ultimately, even in fandom form, everything Rose and Kit is super adorable. It’s a gentle reprieve from a series that, while frequently thrilling, can be an emotional slog. Everyone loves a romance, and when it’s rooted in your fannish tendencies, it’s even better. It’s easy to get behind the couple, and they remain the only pair from the series’ vast ensemble to have officially gotten together in a big way.
Congratulations to the happy couple. We hope you know everything together (sorry, couldn’t resist).