A Dance with Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire, #5) A Dance with Dragons discussion


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Who is Ser Robert Strong?

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Monazza I may be late in asking this, but any ideas on who the guy under the helm might be, as Kevan Lannister is also suspicious?


Monazza Hmmm. But the Mountain was dying so painfully cos of Oberyn's venom, wasn't he?


message 3: by [deleted user] (new)

What if he was brought back from the dead?


message 4: by Nicolás (last edited Mar 02, 2012 06:58PM) (new)

Nicolás (view spoiler)

Edited to add the spoiler tags. Thanks Will.


message 5: by Will (last edited May 04, 2012 10:45AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will IV Nicolás wrote: "*spoilers*"

You can use the "spoiler" tag with html.


Davytron Nicolás wrote: "*spoilers*



Remember Qyburn? If the way he talked and what he asked for didn't seem suspicious to you, I suggest you reread some of Cersei's chapters where Qyburn's interests are hinted at. Try t..."


I am so so excited about where this plot point is going! Cersei is my fav and I can't wait to see what she has up her sleeve.


message 7: by Nicolás (new)

Nicolás If he has no head, he must have trouble speaking or thinking. Gotta wonder how if it sunds hollow when you knock on that helmet that HE NEVER TAKES OFF.


Terry Pearce (view spoiler)


Monazza How about this...I think Qyburn tried his dubious sorcery and acts to try to revive Gregor when he took him for 'treating' the poison in the dungeons. The results were not good (re: Gregor's constant howling, etc)Then he got hold of some red priest and brought him back to life. Now Greg has to hide his face under the helm


Christopher In the visions Bran sees in Book One is (view spoiler)


Razmatus I think it is Gregor Clegane and it seems pretty obvious, not just the size... but when Gregor was almost dead, Qyburn took him for experiments and all of a sudden some huge dude arrives on the scene... more mysterious than this char is Qyburn himself... he appears to be more than just a poor failed maester...


message 12: by Alunsina (last edited Mar 26, 2012 03:51AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Alunsina (view spoiler)

@Christopher
Wow, you remember that far?


Razmatus (view spoiler)


message 14: by Kirby (new) - added it

Kirby I'm having trouble remembering what happened to the hound- is he definitely dead?


message 15: by Joseph (new)

Joseph It has to be the Mountain, it seems pretty obvious from Cersei's scheming with Quburn, the skull and her rather naff plan to harm the Martell's that its him.

We don't know if the Hound is definitely dead or not, but various people wore his helm, including Lem from the Brotherhood and Rorge, leading to the stories about the Hound being alive.

Although with Martin you never are sure. :P


message 16: by Tema (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tema Somehow I am skeptical about Ser Robert Strong being the Mountain. Although the theory is a very intriguing one, I will give you that.


message 17: by Joseph (new)

Joseph The screaming thing is interesting, I'm wondering if Qyburn removed the Mountain's tongue, that way him hiding under his helm protects his identity and he can't talk to anyone either to blow the cover.

I imagine he probably has some facial disfigurement as well, that way it would run in the Clegane family then...


Danielle Joseph wrote: "The screaming thing is interesting, I'm wondering if Qyburn removed the Mountain's tongue, that way him hiding under his helm protects his identity and he can't talk to anyone either to blow the co..."

I think Qyburn acvtually removed his whole head to send back to Dorne and it's an empty helm. I think the hound is alive too, the priest/monk? that told Brienne he died said "the Hound" is dead and I think that signifies that the bad part of him is dead and a reformed Sandor lives on, and as somebody else has pointed out somewhere in the discussions, he was the big man Brienne saw on the island digging a grave.


message 19: by [deleted user] (new)

I thought it was obvious... ;)


Arina Floriana UnGregor might still have his head. I remember Cercei receiving a dwarf head that was describes as being larger than a normal one and the head sent to Dorne was stripped of flesh. So for all we know, Doran might be cradling a dwarf's head. I find that idea amusing as hell, though the whole thing might be to smart for Cersei to come up with...


Marie @christopher.. you make a very very good point. Bran does have a vision. HMMM you have me thinking. I don't think it's the Mountain. It could be Qyburn.

@Kirby I'm pretty sure the Hound is dead. I hope so. I don't like him at all.

I honestly hope Cersei loses at her trail. She is a horrible Queen regent.


Danielle Marie wrote: "@christopher.. you make a very very good point. Bran does have a vision. HMMM you have me thinking. I don't think it's the Mountain. It could be Qyburn.

@Kirby I'm pretty sure the Hound is dead. ..."


I don't see how it could be Qyburn, Ser Strong is serving as a Whitecloak.
I actually started to like the Hound, I think he is alive and not beyond redemption, same as Jaime became more likeable. I wouldn't be surprised if at some point Jaime killed Cersei.


Heather Parks Here's a crazy theory I'm gonna throw out there.
(view spoiler)
So what if some other warg is controlling the reanimated corpse of The Mountain? Qyburn obviously knows more about dark magic then he's letting on. I dunno...its just an idea. Of course, I might be way off, seeing as there just aren't many wargs in the south end of Westeros.


Marie Danielle wrote: "Marie wrote: "@christopher.. you make a very very good point. Bran does have a vision. HMMM you have me thinking. I don't think it's the Mountain. It could be Qyburn.

@Kirby I'm pretty sure the H..."


Magically I think it could be him. I'm not even sure who else it could possibly be. I have some I understanding with Jamie & the Hound but I still really don't like them. If the Hound is alive then I think he'll some how save Sansa. Oh that would be nice if Jamie killed his twin but it's going to be Tyrion. Remember Cersei had it foretold to her by some witch.


message 25: by Josh (new) - rated it 4 stars

Josh valonqar is valyrian for "little brother"

technically, cersei is older than jaime as she came out first.

either could be considered her "little" brother


message 26: by Josh (new) - rated it 4 stars

Josh nice.

it could indeed be anyone's younger brother: stannis, for example.

perhaps a blackfyre descendant? as the first daemon blackfyre who started the whole rebellion was a younger brother...


Marie josh you make a very good point... i guess brain went straight to Tyrion.


message 28: by Samarth (last edited Aug 24, 2012 12:21PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Samarth Ser Robert Strong is the stark boy in Walder's body. Hence the lack of speech. I think.


message 29: by Kirby (new) - added it

Kirby Samarth wrote: "Ser Robert Strong is the stark boy in Walder's body. Hence the lack of speech. I think."

I don't remember there being any walders that were THAT big...


message 30: by Kirby (new) - added it

Kirby Marina wrote: "Actually, the witch didn't say "your valonqar", she said "the valonqar" - I think it could be anybody's little brother."

hmmmm...I don't know. I don't really understand why the witch would make the point of telling cercei that it would be a little brother unless it was her little brother...otherwise, why would it matter at all whether the person was a brother, father, cousin, etc., to anyone else? seems like that would make it a sort of meaningless qualifier...


Samarth Kirby wrote: "Samarth wrote: "Ser Robert Strong is the stark boy in Walder's body. Hence the lack of speech. I think."

I don't remember there being any walders that were THAT big..."


Hodor's real name = Walder.


message 32: by Kirby (new) - added it

Kirby Samarth wrote: "Kirby wrote: "Samarth wrote: "Ser Robert Strong is the stark boy in Walder's body. Hence the lack of speech. I think."

I don't remember there being any walders that were THAT big..."

Hodor's real..."


oh, I had forgotten that!

and, well...I had briefly entertained the thought that it was hodor, but even he isn't big enough to be ser robert, I don't think...and, even if he was, how would he have gotten all the way to king's landing so quickly? isn't he still beyond the wall?


message 33: by Samarth (last edited Aug 25, 2012 06:38PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Samarth Kirby wrote: "Samarth wrote: "Kirby wrote: "Samarth wrote: "Ser Robert Strong is the stark boy in Walder's body. Hence the lack of speech. I think."

I don't remember there being any walders that were THAT big....."


maybe he is, then again we haven't heard from bran in a while.

1. bran did always want to be in the kings-guard.
2. hodor's been given the sword in the "storm of swords". maybe the wight fight at the foot of the cave was all that was for, but i would be surprised.
3. the name robert strong. why robert. because its a common name, maybe. but more likely he is named after someone. Robb would make sense for hodor. for gregor, robert would not make sense. not if qyburn named him.
4. lack of speech. hodor hodor.

i do have some reservations with this theory. Ser Robert being dead like the most prominent. strongly indicating gregor. and who would (tarly/qyburn/kevan) vouch for some random big guy who doesn't talk.


Danielle Samarth wrote: "Ser Robert Strong is the stark boy in Walder's body. Hence the lack of speech. I think."

Gregor Clegane was known as the strongest knight in the Seven Kingdoms and unbeatable in battle. "In battle he wears the heaviest, thickest plate armor in the Seven Kingdoms. His armor is so heavy that no ordinary man would be able to move, let alone fight effectively while wearing it, making him nigh-invincible in combat." "Qyburn mentions working on creating an unbeatable champion for Cersei and has her order a suit of plate armor so thick and heavy that the armorer who created it states that no man is strong enough to move and fight in it." (quotes from A Wiki of Ice and Fire.) I don't see how peaceful Hodor/Walder could pull that off. Even Bran has no sword or fight experience. Hodor is beyond the wall with Bran, how could he be walking around King's Landing as a Whitecloak? Ser Robert Strong is Gregor Clegane, with or without his head, created somehow by Qyburn.


message 35: by Josh (last edited Aug 26, 2012 07:43AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Josh danielle is completely correct.

he doesn't talk because he doesn't have a head. this is also why he doesn't eat. he has a full bucket helm which always remains closed, to conceal the horrid truth: he is a reanimated corpse, minus his head sent to dorne, bent to qyburn's will through necromancy.

literally, there is no doubt in my mind when i say it is gregor clegane.


Samarth josh and danielle,

very good points. and i do have reservations about my own theory, reservations mentioned above. i guess i was just wanting it to be something more unexpected.


message 37: by Josh (new) - rated it 4 stars

Josh by martin's own admission he does like to write things in a way that can be open to interpretation. I think that is a small part of why the books are so engaging; you have an enormously detailed story, yet it's still fantasy and there are still aspects that are intentionally left blank or vague.

in this particular instance, i don't see it being vague. i think the reason it isn't said outright by any of the characters is likely because none wants to be the first to admit believing that a headless corpse has actually been brought back to life.

what i do find interesting is the possible ramifactions of varys' return to the castle. he has said that he despises all magic (especially the dark arts) and those who practice it. so it's interesting to try and speculate as to what end qyburn, ser robert strong and varys will clash.


message 38: by Will (new) - rated it 5 stars

Will I don't think Gregor was resurrected like Catelyn, (the whole red priest way). And I don't think it was a last minute decision for Qyburn to 'bring him back', as I'm pretty sure they requested a very large suit of armor long before this. (And I think we should look at the first and last chapters of AFFC, as it has many similarities with Qyburn and what happened to ADWD.


Yannis Here's a theory that fits everything(big size,Gregor's head in Dorne,not speaking).Gregor with Ned's head minus the tongue. :P


message 40: by Josh (new) - rated it 4 stars

Josh i'm fairly sure that ned's skeleton was sent to catelyn on its way back to winterfell. though i suppose it's possible that it was someone else's skull, i don't think it's very likely that martin wrote it as a red herring.

i think it's more likely robert is just missing a head.


message 41: by Jon (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jon Ned coming back to life = Chuck-Norris-of-literature epic.


message 42: by Grant (new)

Grant Mcguire im not that quick to jump on the zombie mountain bandwagon. if you read the first book again youll find gregor clegan was married 2 or 3 times. what if its his kid or his bastard whos been kept hidden all these years? I doubt it to, just throwing out theories.


message 43: by Jon (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jon Anything is possible with the GRUM.


Stephen Richter It is a frankenstein creation by Qyburn. The Q man had in his experiments besides Gregor, the puppeters, a maid, a noblewoman and anybody else in flea bottom.


message 45: by Critta (new)

Critta They killed Rob Stark and removed his head to ship to the Lannisters. They sewed the wolf's head on his body. What if they sent The Mountain's head to Dorne and had Rob's head sewn on the The Mountain's body so Qyburn could re-animate it as a slave soldier?


message 46: by Critta (new)

Critta Critta wrote: "They killed Rob Stark and removed his head to ship to the Lannisters. They sewed the wolf's head on his body. What if they sent The Mountain's head to Dorne and had Rob's head sewn on the The Mount..."

George didn't pull the name Robert out of a hat. Everything he writes is cleverly calculated to make his audience feel shock and awe.


Matthew Williams They did explain this in A Dance with Dragons, didn't they? To my knowledge, they strongly hinted that Qyburn was experimenting with something dark, and that Strong was the end result and Clegane's body provided the raw material. So yes, I would definitely agree with everyone who has said that he is basically a Frankenstein-type resurrection of Gregor.


Chris The Mountain. Qyburn was 'attending' to him during his excruciating 'death'. If Catelyn (Lady Stoneheart) is walking around, the Mountain could be too...Lady Stoneheart never says a word either.


Stephen Richter Actually, Lady Stoneheart does speak, but only the Brothers without Banners can understand her because of her wounds. She speaks to Brienne, whose ear is not attuned to Stoneheart's guttural speech, but I believe it is Lem who translate for her.


message 50: by Tanner (new) - added it

Tanner Moehle My first thought about Ser Robert Strong was that he's Sandor, not Gregor. But, I also like the idea that Quyburn is a necromancer controlling a headless Mecha-Celgane death machine.


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