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June 14, 2011 5:33 AM   Subscribe

[Game of Thrones Filter, likely spoilers] Did Syrio the swordmaster get killed or not?

I'd like to be spoiled, but really all I need is a yes or no answer if possible.

When the guards come to take Arya she runs off as Syrio blocks them.

In the novel, did he live or die?
posted by bardic to Media & Arts (18 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
Yes. It's never described explictly, but Ayra later remembers him as if he's dead and he never appears again in the books.
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:36 AM on June 14, 2011


Boo hiss.
posted by bardic at 5:38 AM on June 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


The passage in the book is essentially identical to what we see in the show. The practice sword gets chopped, and Arya runs.

GRRM has later tended to imply that Syrio is dead, though not entirely explicitly. Some details from a Fansite
posted by Rallon at 5:38 AM on June 14, 2011


I just read tonight (for the first time), Arya is in Harrenhall (in book 2) and definitely considers Syrio to be dead.
posted by wilful at 5:48 AM on June 14, 2011


Unknown through Feast of Crows. Arya certainly thinks he's dead, but things happen to make me doubt that, involving Jaqen H'ghar and her journey to Braavos, involving themes of identity, or lack thereof..
posted by supercres at 6:12 AM on June 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


Not today.
posted by tim_in_oz at 6:16 AM on June 14, 2011 [7 favorites]


NOT TODAY!
posted by kbanas at 6:23 AM on June 14, 2011 [8 favorites]


It certainly looks like Syrio can't have survived, and we know Arya later believes he is dead, but she only knows what she saw when he told her to flee... And we know the PoV characters in the books are unreliable narrators, so her recollection of her flight from the Red Tower isn't necessarily even the truth of the matter...

Short answer - yeah, it's unlikely any normal person would have survived the last scene where we see him...
posted by russm at 6:24 AM on June 14, 2011


In interviews, GRRM has refused to confirm whether or not Syrio is dead. This is in contrast to some other characters who have died 'offscreen', and who he has been willing to confirm dead. There is no definite yes or no answer to be had.
posted by nowonmai at 6:44 AM on June 14, 2011


It was mentioned on another forum that the chief guard fighting Syrio was later seen in the royal court during Sansa's plea.
posted by Gyan at 7:41 AM on June 14, 2011


Syrio is a character you like. Therefore he is dead. This is the one immutable rule of the series: if GRRM introduces someone likeable, honorable or fundamentally decent (particularly if that person is a man) that person is a walking corpse. It may take a few thousand pages, but trust me.
posted by The Bellman at 8:03 AM on June 14, 2011 [7 favorites]


One of my favorite scenes. In the novel, here's how it ends. Syrio has killed or disabled the unarmored Lannister guardsmen with nothing more than his practice sword and unbelievable speed, but Ser Meryn is fully armored:
Five men were down, dead, or dying by the time Arya reached the back door that opened on the kitchen. She heard Sir Meryn Trant curse. "Bloody oafs," he swore, drawing his longsword from its scabbard.

Syrio Forel resumed his stance and clicked his teeth together. "Arya child," he called out, never looking at her, "be gone now."

Look with your eyes, he had said. She saw: the knight in his pale armor head to foot, legs, throat, and hands sheathed in metal, eyes hidden behind his high white helm, and in his hand cruel steel. Against that: Syrio, in a leather vest, with a wooden sword in his hand. "Syrio, run," she screamed.

"The first sword of Braavos does not run," he sang as Ser Meryn slashed at him. Syrio danced away from his cut, his stick a blur. In a heartbeat, he had bounced blows off the knight's temple, elbow, and throat, the wood ringing against the metal of helm, gauntlet, and gorget. Arya stood frozen. Ser Meryn advanced; Syrio backed away. He checked the next blow, spun away from the second, deflected the third.

The fourth sliced his stick in two, splintering the wood and shearing through the lead core.

Sobbing, Arya spun and ran.
The clear implication is that Meryn kills Syrio (and Meryn appears later, so Syrio certainly doesn't kill him). But there's no explicit confirmation that Syrio is dead; if he had run, he would have likely escaped Meryn in his armor.

In the second book, Cersei tells Tyrion:
"I sent Meryn Trant to take her in hand when Robert died, but her wretched dancing master interfered and the girl fled. No one has seen her since. Likely she's dead. A great many people died that day."
posted by russilwvong at 9:15 AM on June 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


They didn't actually show him dying so my instincts are saying that he's still alive. But it could go both ways. So who knows. I say he's still alive! Or at least I hope so...he is a great character.
posted by ljs30 at 11:04 AM on June 14, 2011


Yes. It's never described explictly, but Ayra later remembers him as if he's dead and he never appears again in the books.

"Syrio" never appears again. But supercres has it; the television show makes it even more likely than the books that Syrio didn't die, at least in some form or incarnation.
posted by Justinian at 11:46 AM on June 14, 2011


I dunno. In the show screams are heard, while in the book none are. And Meryn Trant survives... then again there's the rule: if you don't see a corpse...
posted by stratastar at 12:39 PM on June 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


Anyone else think Syrio in the TV show looks like Robert Downey Jr doing his character from Tropic Thunder?

if GRRM introduces someone likeable, honorable or fundamentally decent (particularly if that person is a man) that person is a walking corpse

Tyrion Lannister is a fundamentally decent (half) man.
posted by mrgrimm at 1:21 PM on June 14, 2011


if GRRM introduces someone likeable, honorable or fundamentally decent (particularly if that person is a man) that person is a walking corpse.

Actually none of the walking corpses seem very likeable to me.
posted by Justinian at 1:26 PM on June 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


Meryn being alive could also be because Syrio had a wooden sword so even if he was defeated Meryn might have survived.
posted by haveanicesummer at 4:54 PM on June 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


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