While the battle-weary soldiers of Game of Thrones toasted their victory against the White Walkers with flagons of wine, it appears Daenerys Targaryen was drinking a latte from Winterfell’s local coffee emporium during the epic bacchanal — and you know the barista probably spelled her name wrong.
Eighteen minutes into last night’s episode, fans immediately noticed the odd prop placement and signal boosted the moment on Twitter. While this scene contains several types of glassware — Tormund even guzzles wine from a hollowed-out tusk — the beverage container in front of Dany doesn’t look like anything but a standard paper coffee cup with a cardboard sleeve and plastic lid. Let’s zoom in, shall we?
She’s also clearly holding a wooden wine goblet, suggesting that Khaleesi is one of those people who walks into brunch with a Starbucks cup in hand and leaves it sitting on the table for the duration of the meal.
This party scene was an epic spectacle with tons of characters flirting and bearing their souls to each other, so it must’ve taken forever to film. Emilia Clarke could have needed a little caffeine to help keep her energy up during filming, and it’s possible that nobody noticed that the craft services cup was on the table in this shot. Alternately, David Benioff and D. B. Weiss could be using the cup to suggest that even during a sloppy party, the Mother of Dragons stays alert by chasing wine with coffee. Either way, the paper coffee cup is easily the strangest Game of Thrones cameo since Ed Sheeran appeared as a wandering minstrel in Season 7, and that’s even considering Chris Stapleton’s turn as a white walker last week.
Update, 5/6 4:30 p.m.: The Game of Thrones team is not denying that a coffee cup made it into the final cut of last night’s episode. Executive producer Bernie Caulfield apologized for the gaffe on WNYC today, while also quipping, “Westeros was the first place to actually, you know, have Starbucks.” Meanwhile, production designer Hauke Richter tells Variety that “things can get forgotten on set, and he believes the coffee mistake is getting “blown out of proportion [because] it has not happened with Thrones so far.” And HBO also sent TV writers an official press release poking fun at the mistake:
HBO has put out a statement on the coffee cup seen in last night's Game of Thrones episode. pic.twitter.com/PKvOccclAX— Dave Itzkoff (@ditzkoff) May 6, 2019
Considering that Game of Thrones is still trending globally on social media due to the coffee cup, the mistake actually appears to be working in the show’s favor. MarketWatch also estimates the flub is worth around $250,000 in free advertising for Starbucks.