Game of Thrones - Season 8 (Official Trailer)
Alena Cash loved the name Khaleesi. It means queen in the “Game of Thrones” books and HBO series, one of the titles given to the dragon-riding warrior Daenerys Targaryen.
So Cash named her Gladstone business — made-to-order gowns and costumes — Khaleesi Chic Boutique.
“I didn’t pick the name because she’s a super role model,” Cash said this week. “I just thought it was very nice and flowy and beautiful.”
Fans of the show might be wondering if Cash is having second thoughts about the name now.
On the series’ penultimate episode last Sunday, May 12, Daenerys took an evil turn and murdered thousands of innocent men, women and children while riding atop her fire-breathing dragon.
The stunning heel-turn not only shocked (and scarred) “Thrones” viewers around the world, but it may have brought deep regret to the many parents who had chosen to name their daughters after the Dragon Queen.
Since the show began in 2011, at least 3,500 American girls have been named either Daenerys or Khaleesi, according to the Social Security Administration.
After all, the Khaleesi, played by Emilia Clarke, spent the seven previous seasons liberating slaves, gaining armies and raising dragons through a series of strong, smart and cunning tactics. Her tumultuous road from ruling long shot in Season 1 to queen-presumptive in this final season has made her one of the franchise’s most popular characters and a worldwide feminist icon.
Last month, one mom told The New York Times that in time her 1-year-old daughter Khaleesi’s name would be a common one that people associated with “strength” and “a woman who knows her power, knows what she wants.”
But now there may be another connotation to the name: genocide.
As for Cash, the Khaleesi name will be staying on her business, which she’s been running from her home for the past year.
“I wasn’t too surprised,” Cash says of Sunday’s fiery episode.
A fan of big budget sci-fi and fantasy like “The Lord of the Rings” and “Star Trek,” Cash says she had already read the “Game of Thrones” books and saw Daenerys’ turn for the bad coming.
“I kind of had a feeling she would end up ruling the seven kingdoms in a not-so-nice manner,” Cash says.
Cash says she can sew “just about anything,” but spends most of her time making whimsical costumes, like Disney characters or superheroes for kids. Low enough stakes, she says, to not be too shook up by Sunday’s episode.
“Now if I named a child after her,” she adds with a laugh, “I’d be having second thoughts about it.”
Now if Cash did have a daughter, she would consider naming her Arya, after the “Game of Thrones” girl (played by Maisie Williams) who becomes one of the show’s strongest, beloved characters.
That’s the most common baby name associated with “Game of Thrones,” according to the Social Security Administration. Since 2010, Arya has steadily risen in popularity from 942nd place to 119th last year. In Missouri, “Aria” ranks 30th; in Kansas, it’s 45th.
But lately Arya has become an accomplished assassin. Let’s hope that after the “Game of Thrones” season finale May 19, the parents of America’s little Aryas don’t have any regrets.