This article incorporates spoilers for Seasons 1-7 of “Game of Thrones.”
It’s been 541 days since “Game of Thrones” final aired a brand new episode.
That was the cataclysmic Season 7 finale, which each demonstrated the annihilative energy of a zombie ice dragon and eventually paired the 2 most engaging individuals within the story, Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) and Jon Snow (Kit Harington), not lengthy after revealing that they’re apparently aunt and nephew. (Other things happened, too.)
Our lengthy “Thrones”-less night time will finish April 14, when the eighth and closing season of HBO’s largest ever hit lastly kicks off. The Times might be there with the standard array of recaps, interviews and explainers, in addition to our day-after e-newsletter.
[Before Season eight begins, join our “Game of Thrones” newsletter for a rewatch information for the primary seven seasons.]
Starting subsequent week, nevertheless, we’ll get the entire Westeros ball rolling early with a preseason “Thrones” e-newsletter: a rewatch information to the primary seven seasons, tackling a distinct season every week.
It might be an obsessive (in a great way) run-up to the ultimate season of “Game of Thrones” — a deep dive into all of the previous twists, themes and connections you don’t notice you’ve forgotten, together with tributes to characters we liked and misplaced. (Hodor.)
If you aren’t but a subscriber to to our “Thrones” e-newsletter, here’s a sign-up link. You’ll obtain the preseason version each Monday and Friday starting Feb. 25, in addition to our day-after version as soon as the season begins. If you’re already a subscriber, you’ll get them routinely.
Want some firm? Share the sign-up link with any buddies who 1.) love the present however weren’t beforehand half of our e-newsletter household, or 2.) don’t actually care about it however may need some background for pop-cultural literacy causes. All are welcome!
And whereas we’re right here, right here’s a short rundown of every thing we find out about Season eight to this point:
It might be huge!
But this season might be even greater, with six almost characteristic size episodes and a few of the biggest, most complicated sequences ever filmed for tv. The closing conflict between the heroes and the undead White Walkers, specifically, took many weeks to movie, together with 55 nights of outside capturing.
That episode was overseen by the veteran “Thrones” director Miguel Sapochnik, whose earlier episodes like “Hardhome” and “Battle of the Bastards” featured some of the present’s most dazzling motion scenes. But the brand new one “makes the Battle of the Bastards look like a theme park,” Peter Dinklage told Entertainment Weekly.
And that’s presumably earlier than the present even will get to the ultimate conflict to find out who truly wins this entire, you understand, recreation of thrones.
There might be new alliances.
Some of the extra pleasing scenes of the sometimes lackluster Season 7 got here when the far-flung characters we’ve been expecting years lastly met, or have been reunited. Jon and Daenerys, of course, but in addition Cersei and Daenerys. Jaime and Daenerys. Arya and Sansa. The Clegane boys.
As one may anticipate, battles between the dwelling and the lifeless encourage new partnerships. A teaser scene launched by HBO reveals Sansa providing the Stark stronghold, Winterfell, to Daenerys, though Sansa doesn’t appear significantly thrilled about it. According to EW, the season premiere opens at Winterfell and calls again to the present’s pilot, with Daenerys and her military arriving on the fort a lot as King Robert’s procession did to start with.
It might be satisfying. Or not.
Casey Bloys, HBO’s programming president, has said that David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, the creators of “Game of Thrones,” have ended the present in a manner that’s each dramatically and emotionally satisfying. But what else would he say?
More fascinating have been remarks final yr from Sophie Turner, who performs the Stark daughter Sansa. In an interview with IGN, she stated that the ending would in all probability divide viewers. “I think a lot of fans will be disappointed and a lot of fans will be over the moon,” she stated.
This jibes with what George R.R. Martin, the godhead of the “Thrones” universe, has steered, which is that the top of the saga might be bittersweet.
“I don’t know that I, as a writer, really believe in the conventional, clichéd happy ending, where everything is resolved and the good guy wins and the bad guy loses,” Martin stated at a book fair in 2016. “We very seldom see that in real life or in history, and I don’t find it as emotionally satisfying myself as what I like to call the bittersweet ending.”
Fan theories abound about, effectively, every thing concerned on this present. And a fringe-y however persistent one holds that the present’s ur-bad man, the undead Night King, would be the one who finally sits on the Iron Throne.
That appears much less “bittersweet” than “nutty and unlikely.” But so did a lot of different issues that finally transpired on “Game of Thrones,” so who is aware of?
Of course, this isn’t actually the top.
Well, this half of the story will finish. But given the present’s extraordinary — and terribly worthwhile — success, we’ve more than likely solely simply begun exploring the “Thrones” universe.
This summer season, HBO will start capturing a prequel pilot written by Jane Goldman and Martin, set 1000’s of years earlier than the occasions of “Game of Thrones” and starring Naomi Watts, amongst others.
HBO has but to substantiate that the pilot might be changed into one other collection. But AT&T didn’t buy HBO’s parent company, Time Warner, solely to let one of its most dear items of mental property go dormant.
Martin and Goldman’s idea was one of several prequel pilots HBO developed, and the community hasn’t dominated out transferring ahead on a number of of the others. “It’s an incredibly rich world that George has created,” Bloys told Deadline recently. “So, I think we’d be crazy not to take a shot.”
So whereas winter is lastly right here, this recreation might be on, in some kind, for the foreseeable future.