The winner of Game of Thrones turned out to be quite unexpected — but it wasn't as wildly unpredictable as you might have thought.
Leading up to the show's series finale, as fans endlessly debated who would ultimately emerge as ruler of the Seven Kingdoms, there were several obvious contenders. But much to the surprise of some fans, betting markets had someone else in mind: the person who ultimately emerged victorious in "The Iron Throne," who shall remain nameless as to avoid divulging spoilers.
In fact, the betting website Odds Shark days ahead of the show's final episode declared this person the -500 favorite to win the series, prompting USA Todayto ask, "Are we missing something?" Writer Henry McKenna proceeded to delve into all the reasons this winner wouldn't make sense while offering that "maybe the oddsmakers know something we don't."
Indeed, Vanity Fair's Joanna Robinson noted in her post-finale assessment that "many regarded it as a fluke" when this character became the favorite to win, although she goes on to note that in retrospect, it actually makes a lot of sense. It's worth noting that there were leaks about the finale in recent weeks that accurately revealed the winner, which may have been the reason for the sudden jump in the betting odds; one bookmaker suspended wagers for that reason. Still, the winner had emerged as the favorite even going back to November of last year.
Ultimately, whether the choice of Game of Thrones' victor was satisfying is up for debate, and it's part of the reason the finale has proven to be so divisive. But if nothing else, those who followed the betting markets in their pools certainly had reason to celebrate. Brendan Morrow
After President Trump vowed Tuesday to meet North Korea with "fire and fury" if the country's nuclear threats continue, Morning Joe's Joe Scarborough took a moment to tell America "I told you so." When Scarborough saw Trump's "chilling words," he said he "couldn't help but go back" to a Morning Joe discussion from Aug. 3, 2016, in which he and co-host Mika Brzezinski had explicitly warned America about the dangers of putting Trump near nuclear weapons.
In the clip from last August, Scarborough recounted how Trump had asked "three times" during an hour-long briefing about the use of nuclear weapons. At one point, Scarborough claims Trump went so far as to ask "if we have them, why can't we use them." "Be careful America and be careful Republican leaders," Brzezinski said.
Perhaps most unsettling in light of Trump's recent threat was Morning Joe's prior discussion about the "time frame" between a decision to use nuclear weapons and when those weapons would be launched. Former National Security Agency Director Michael Hayden told Scarborough and Brzezinski that the nuclear weapons system "is designed for speed and decisiveness." "It's not designed to debate the decision," Hayden said.
Watch the warning that Morning Joe issued last year below, and head over to Mediaite to watch Scarborough relive it Wednesday. Becca Stanek
Hillary Clinton unintentionally made the jobs of conservative ad-makers a little bit easier during the second Democratic debate on Saturday evening when she stumbled over a question about campus protests to wax nostalgic about her own college days. "I come from the '60s, a long time ago. There was a lot of activism on campus," Clinton said in reply to the moderator's question.
By indirectly playing up her age, Clinton, 68, played right into the hands of her critics. "I can guarantee that this will appear in some ad at some point," pollster Frank Luntz told The Washington Post. "Nobody, Republican or Democrat, wants to vote for a candidate from the 1960s when we're well into the 21st century."
Clip: "I come from the 60's, a long time ago." Save. Smile.