From the starting of the season.In season 1 episode 1 to the season 7 episode 6 we can clearly view that white walkers or army of dead can run fast and also can catch a running man with maximum speed (maximum speed here means a man running for his life). We can see them running or walking fast in the second last episode of season 7. So why they were so slow. This is a plot hole or there is some theory behind it?

Edit: This is not a duplicate question, that question which you are referring is not answering my question. My question is simple that why they are being shown at slow pace. Secondly in the duplicate question how people can speculate that this is a war strategy. There is no such thing in white walkers like war strategy ever mentioned in the season.

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    Show plot-hole really. In Books, Wights are slow and clumsy. It's their masters the White Walkers who are fast, elegant and beautiful. In the show, it appears they usually walk slow but their masters can hit the Nitro/Turbo mode on, which makes them go faster whenever they wish.
    – Aegon
    Commented Aug 30, 2017 at 6:53
  • 1
    Could be that in Show-Verse, Wights drain energy from their masters or their whatever source of magical energy which keeps them running. So The Others tend to conserve the energy mostly and use it sparingly unless the occasion calls for it. Goes without saying, My own speculation, in hope of building some legs for the show.
    – Aegon
    Commented Aug 30, 2017 at 6:55
  • but in the show wights were also very fast. If not equal to their masters but atleast at a speed to catch a man.
    – tech_geek
    Commented Aug 30, 2017 at 6:56
  • Hence the whining comments instead of a proper answer :P They run on speed of plot
    – Aegon
    Commented Aug 30, 2017 at 6:57
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    @adeel You are asking a question about White Walkers, still the most mysterious creatures in the show (which is ahead of the books) - you won't get anything except speculation... Commented Aug 30, 2017 at 13:10

1 Answer 1


The simple answer is that the White Walkers are not in a hurry. They must wait for winter, they must wait for opportunities to grow their army, and they potentially have been waiting to lure a dragon over the wall. For all we know, they never actually had a way past the wall until the final 2 episodes.

Remember that they have been waiting beyond the wall for 8,000+ years. They have plenty of patience. In fact, when Bran sees the Night King and his army, they are all simply standing there, completely still:

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There is also evidence that they are toying with the living - recall the Night King raising the dead as Jon watches, or the White Walker that looks right at Samwell and keeps going. I think they needed people to know they are there and to panic. Jon's sense of urgency is what ultimately leads to a critical error that gives the Night King exactly what he needed to pass the wall.

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    Probably looked at Sam and thought, "He's really going to slow us down."
    – user25738
    Commented Aug 30, 2017 at 20:14
  • 2
    That Walker never looked at Sam directly, the camera work simply made us think that he saw Sam (it was a cliffhanger). See this accepted answer for pictures and explanation
    – Flater
    Commented Aug 31, 2017 at 10:17

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