It’s here! It’s here! It’s here!
For the last seven years, fans of good TV have had an annual ritual – waiting for the new season of Game of Thrones that drops early summer. This year is bittersweet, knowing how this is the final season of this epic series. It’s a payoff for loyalists, and while HBO will continue to make spin-offs of the larger GoT universe, the Starks and Targs and Lannisters as we know them now will probably not exist on TV anymore.
(RIP Jon Snow! You really did know nothing.)
And the teasers have done a great job of raising expectations!
If you’ve missed it, the first teaser trailer of Game of Thrones Season 8 dropped just some hours ago. It is called “The Crypts of Winterfell” and takes place in; wait for it… the crypts beneath the castle of Winterfell!
Check it out:
Before that, we had this wonderful teaser that saw winter creep up slowly on Westeros – the map of Westeros in Dragonstone with its chess-like pieces serving as the background for this teaser.
The wolf and the dragon froze and the lion burnt, while a wall of dragonstone (obsidian) broke right through the middle of the land. If this doesn’t fuel theories, we wonder what will!
So, what do we know about Season 8 so far?
Predictions for Game of Thrones Season 8 are dime a dozen on the internet right now. While we would love to indulge in some good old theory hunting, we would rather go down a different path and look at what we know will happen for sure this season, and the payoffs that we can look forward to.
Jon Snow and the Case of the Kidnapped Stark
To begin with, we know that Jon Snow’s parentage will be a big payoff this season. This is what the last seven seasons, in a way, have been leading up to (remember all the R+L=J memes?). It is also predicted by Ned Stark’s parting words to Jon which are a part of the “Crypts of Winterfell” teaser (You are a Stark. You might not have my name, but you have my blood.)
Jon Snow is the eponymous ‘song of ice and fire’ born of Targaryen and Stark blood. And him coming to know of his parentage and dealing with the repercussions of it would be a big theme for Jon’s arc this season.
He might have bent the knee as a Stark, but him being a Targ – and one with a better claim to the Iron Throne than Danerys – changes the game.
Ice Zombies vs. Living Men: Who Survives?
The second thing we know will happen for sure in Season 8 is the big battle between the living and the dead. The wights have been a force to be feared for long right from when we heard Old Nan talk about them in the first season.
We have always known that the fight between the living and the dead would be a huge deal. Game of Thrones began with an introduction to the wights in its very first scene ever – probably because there is so much more about the WhiteWalkers than we have been told.
And this, in my opinion, will also be the biggest payoff of the final season. We know how the first WhiteWalker was created, but there has to be more to that story. There’s so much there that viewers have not been told; so much about the ancient history of Westeros and the children of the forest and the First Men who came to the land. There are also multiple questions which need answering.
When did the WhiteWalkers turn on the children of the forest and start attacking them? What really is their beef with the mortals who are so fearful of them? How does this all tie back to the weapons left behind at the Fist of the First Men which Sam found? Why was Craster giving away his children to the Whitewalkers and what happened to them? We really need answers!
Cersei, The Valonqar, and the Curse of The Mad King
There is no doubt that Cersei Lannister is a deeply intriguing character. On one hand, she is a proud mother and a clever woman who has not been given her due in a patriarchal setting. On the other hand, she is, well… to put it mildly, just a bit crazy!
Cersei’s arc has taken her through a range of emotions and experiences. She has lost lovers, children, her dignity at one point (Shame! Shame! Shame!) and it’s driven her to become this person who cares about nothing except the throne. It’s the only constant in her life right now, and she’ll do anything to protect it.
Season 7 of Game of Thrones saw Cersei entering this uneasy truce with Dany and Jon. But Cersei being Cersei, she isn’t completely sold on the idea of saving the world when she can instead save her precious Iron Throne. She isn’t fighting to save the world, and it’s obvious that her brother Jaime isn’t going to be happy about it.
Season 8 will see a culmination of Cersei’s arc, and with that will come a new era for the Lannisters. Will Tryion be the last Lannister left? Will Jaime kill his sister and claim Casterly rock for himself? Or will the curse of the Mad King’s death drive the Kingslayer insane?
All Hail the Wolf Pack!
“When the snows fall and the white winds blow, the lone wolf dies but the pack survives”.
Last season of Game of Thrones was packed with some serious family drama for the Starks. In the end, it all seemed well. Sansa chose to believe her kid sister over the manipulative Littlefinger. Jon decided to bend the knee but survived the WhiteWalkers for another day. And Bran was back home – a little creepy, obviously; but still Bran. Still a Stark.
The final season will revolve around the Starks in a major way, too. Beginning with the revelation of Jon’s parentage (the first point on this list), to the first battle with the WhiteWalkers at Winterfell, to the final skirmish with Cersei and her troops – the Starks will be the center of it all. Sibling rivalries will be tested in more ways than before, and the teaser seems to portend dark days ahead for the wolf clan.
If you look closely, Arya, Jon, and Sansa seem to be looking at their own statues in the crypt before the winter fog starts to sweep in. Does this mean the Stark children will die? Since Jon’s statue looks older than the other two, will he survive the girls or is this all a brain teaser sent our way from the D&D duo?
We will keep updating this post as the season progresses and keep checking off the questions on our list that get answered. And adding more, when they don’t! The final season of GoT drops on 14th April, and each episode is supposedly as long as a feature film. That should be enough time to nicely sew in all the loops and loose ends that have been left behind from the previous seasons.
We’ll be waiting for it with bated breath, and our checklist in tow. Do let us know what payoffs you’re waiting for in this season. Until then, Valar Dohaeris amigos!