Winter is here: A ‘Game of Thrones’ season 6 primer


[vc_row full_width=”stretch_row_content_no_spaces” full_height=”yes” el_class=”gotheader” css=”.vc_custom_1460693885705{margin-bottom: 0px !important;background-image: url( !important;background-position: center !important;background-repeat: no-repeat !important;background-size: cover !important;}”][vc_column][vc_empty_space height=”300px”][vc_custom_heading text=”Winter is here.” font_container=”tag:h1|font_size:150px|text_align:center|color:%23dddddd” google_fonts=”font_family:Lora%3Aregular%2Citalic%2C700%2C700italic|font_style:700%20bold%20regular%3A700%3Anormal”][vc_empty_space height=”200px”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row full_width=”stretch_row” css=”.vc_custom_1460693811633{margin-top: 0px !important;margin-bottom: 0px !important;padding-top: 75px !important;padding-bottom: 75px !important;background-color: #dee2e5 !important;}”][vc_column][vc_empty_space height=”200px”][vc_custom_heading text=”The seven kingdoms are divided.

Houses are plagued by death and division.

And the White Walkers are coming.

Here is where we stand.” font_container=”tag:h1|font_size:50px|text_align:center” google_fonts=”font_family:Lora%3Aregular%2Citalic%2C700%2C700italic|font_style:700%20bold%20regular%3A700%3Anormal”][vc_empty_space height=”200px”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row full_width=”stretch_row” full_height=”yes” el_class=”gotrow” css=”.vc_custom_1460696491864{margin-top: 0px !important;margin-bottom: 0px !important;padding-top: 50px !important;padding-bottom: 50px !important;background-color: #b26b60 !important;}”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”House Lannister” font_container=”tag:h1|font_size:50|text_align:center” google_fonts=”font_family:Lora%3Aregular%2Citalic%2C700%2C700italic|font_style:700%20bold%20regular%3A700%3Anormal”][vc_row_inner css=”.vc_custom_1460689935079{background-image: url( !important;background-position: center !important;background-repeat: no-repeat !important;background-size: contain !important;}”][vc_column_inner][vc_column_text]


Cersei: She’s freshly out of prison and now in the hands of her personal security guard, The Mountain, who was recently brought back as a massive, hulking zombie. Cersei went through an emotional experience during her time in prison, and throughout her walk of “shame.” Viewers can expect the queen mother to be dead set on getting revenge.

Jaime: In season five, Jaime was sent to rescue his daughter from House Martell in Dorne, and while he was able to get Myrcella back on the ship to King’s Landing, she died in his arms right after he told her he was actually her biological father.

Tyrion: Throughout season five, Tyrion made it across the Narrow Sea to Meereen, where he met Queen Daenerys Targaryen and joined her as an advisor. At the end of the season, he was left to rule Meereen along with Missandei and Grey Worm in Daenerys’ absence, as Jorah and Daario set out to find her.

Myrcella: After living in Dorne with her betrothed, Prince Trystane, for the past few seasons, Myrcella was poisoned on her way back to King’s Landing by Ellaria Sand as revenge for Oberyn Martell dying in season four.

Best episodes

Season 3 Episode 9 – “The Rains of Castamere”
While the Lannister family was not in attendance at the Red Wedding, which made “The Rains of Castamere” one of the most famous and shocking episodes of the show, they were the ones who arranged it, resulting in a devastating blow to their enemies, House Stark. While attending the wedding of Edmure Tully to one of Walder Frey’s daughters, Robb and Catelyn Stark, as well as Robb’s direwolf, were murdered by the Frey family — who were newly aligned with the Lannisters.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row full_width=”stretch_row” full_height=”yes” el_class=”gotrow” css=”.vc_custom_1460696472190{margin-top: 0px !important;margin-bottom: 0px !important;padding-top: 50px !important;padding-bottom: 50px !important;background-color: #dbcd64 !important;}”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”House Baratheon” font_container=”tag:h1|font_size:50|text_align:center” google_fonts=”font_family:Lora%3Aregular%2Citalic%2C700%2C700italic|font_style:700%20bold%20regular%3A700%3Anormal”][vc_row_inner css=”.vc_custom_1460691266072{background-image: url( !important;background-position: center !important;background-repeat: no-repeat !important;background-size: contain !important;}”][vc_column_inner][vc_column_text]


Stannis: Although it’s left ambiguous in the episode, Stannis is beyond dead. There’s no way that Brienne is going to watch him (sort-of) murder her beloved Renly and let him live. Also, Stannis let Melisandre murder his precious, angelic daughter last season.

Shireen: In one of the worst scenes of season five, Stannis watched as Melisandre burnt his daughter to death as a sacrifice so he could win his upcoming battle against the Bolton family.

Selyse: Overcome with guilt about allowing her daughter to be sacrificed for her husband’s success, Selyse Baratheon committed suicide shortly after.

Gendry: Gendry is still rowing along, far away from his uncle Stannis.

Best episodes

Season 2 Episode 9 – “Blackwater”
The epic battle that took place during this episode was comprised of one Baratheon versus another “Baratheon,” as Stannis’ forces took on Joffrey’s army in King’s Landing. While Stannis and his army were winning the battle for a majority of the episode, Tyrion took charge of the king’s army after Joffrey cowered in fear. With last-minute help from the Tyrell family and Lannister family, the King’s Army ultimately and shockingly won.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row full_width=”stretch_row” full_height=”yes” el_class=”gotrow” css=”.vc_custom_1460836810782{margin-top: 0px !important;margin-bottom: 0px !important;padding-top: 50px !important;padding-bottom: 50px !important;background-color: #72a54d !important;}”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”House Tyrell” font_container=”tag:h1|font_size:50|text_align:center” google_fonts=”font_family:Lora%3Aregular%2Citalic%2C700%2C700italic|font_style:700%20bold%20regular%3A700%3Anormal”][vc_row_inner css=”.vc_custom_1460836770650{background-image: url( !important;background-position: center !important;background-repeat: no-repeat !important;background-size: contain !important;}”][vc_column_inner][vc_column_text]


Margaery: Margaery spent the majority of last season getting married to Tommen Baratheon, becoming queen for the third time. She attempts to pull Tommen away from his mother, Cersei, who then accuses Margaery of sleeping around while married to her son, and she is thrown in prison by the High Sparrow. At the end of season five, she’s still in there and awaiting trial.

Loras: Loras was arrested in season five by Lancel Lannister and the Faith Militant for being homosexual. At the end of the season, he was awaiting trial along with his sister, Margaery.

Olenna: Enraged that both of her grandchildren were arrested, Olenna provided information that eventually leads to the arrest of Cersei Lannister.

Best episodes

Season 4 Episode 2 – “The Lion and the Rose”
Margaery’s second wedding was one of the most exciting episodes of the show, as the villainous Joffrey Baratheon, who is Margaery’s husband, was poisoned at his own wedding feast. While fans were ecstatic that the painfully terrible character was dead, it was even more exciting to find out that Margaery’s grandmother, Olenna Tyrell, was one of the co-conspirators in his death, in order to protect her granddaughter from an unhappy marriage.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row full_width=”stretch_row” full_height=”yes” el_class=”gotrow” css=”.vc_custom_1460929363097{margin-top: 0px !important;margin-bottom: 0px !important;padding-top: 50px !important;padding-bottom: 50px !important;background-color: #c65555 !important;}”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”House Targaryen” font_container=”tag:h1|font_size:50|text_align:center” google_fonts=”font_family:Lora%3Aregular%2Citalic%2C700%2C700italic|font_style:700%20bold%20regular%3A700%3Anormal”][vc_row_inner css=”.vc_custom_1460836888684{background-image: url( !important;background-position: center !important;background-repeat: no-repeat !important;background-size: contain !important;}”][vc_column_inner][vc_column_text]


Daenerys: Season five saw Daenerys trying to keep control over Meereen with her army and personal advisors, including Tyrion Lannister. After being convinced to reopen the fighting pits, in which slaves battle to the death for glory, Daenerys and everyone close to her is attacked by the Sons of the Harpy — a rebel group in Meereen set on killing Daenerys. She escapes on her dragon, Drogon, but lands herself in the middle of the Dothraki sea, now having to face another group of enemies on her own.

Ser Jorah Mormont: While not technically a member of the Targaryen family, Ser Jorah was previously one of Daenerys’ most trusted advisors and closest friends. This past season, he tries to get back in her company after she exiled him by bringing her Tyrion Lannister, and ends up saving Daenerys’ life when she is attacked by the Sons of the Harpy.

Best episodes

Season 5 Episode 9 – “The Dance of Dragons”
The part of this episode that really made an impact on me was the look in Daenerys’ eyes when she first sees her dragon, Drogon, come to rescue her after she is cornered by the Sons of the Harpy. It’s a small part of an altogether truly magnificent scene, but it ultimately never fails to make me cry. The obvious relief and safety she feels from looking at her dragon shows the true bond she has with them, and also shows the incredible acting skills of Emilia Clarke.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row full_width=”stretch_row” full_height=”yes” el_class=”gotrow” css=”.vc_custom_1460929378062{margin-top: 0px !important;margin-bottom: 0px !important;padding-top: 50px !important;padding-bottom: 50px !important;background-color: #e2a748 !important;}”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”House Martell” font_container=”tag:h1|font_size:50|text_align:center” google_fonts=”font_family:Lora%3Aregular%2Citalic%2C700%2C700italic|font_style:700%20bold%20regular%3A700%3Anormal”][vc_row_inner css=”.vc_custom_1460837141924{background-image: url( !important;background-position: center !important;background-repeat: no-repeat !important;background-size: contain !important;}”][vc_column_inner][vc_column_text]


Prince Doran: In season five, Prince Doran made it clear he did not want a war with the Lannister family, but after the death of Myrcella Baratheon, he’ll probably get one within the next season.

Sand Snakes: The daughters of Oberyn Martell were thrown into a Dornish prison after a battle with Jaime Lannister and Bronn, but released sometime before “Mother’s Mercy,” in which they watched their mother poison Myrcella Baratheon before she left to return to King’s Landing.

Ellaria Sand: Ellaria spent the previous season mourning the death of her paramour.
Prince Trystane: Myrcella Lannister’s fiance was on his way to King’s Landing with Jaime and Myrcella when she died from being poisoned.

Best episodes

The entirety of season 4
A lot of characters on “Game of Thrones” are incredibly crafted, to the point where I could watch them for hours, but none were better than Oberyn Martell — the greatest character in the history of the show. He stole every scene he was in, because he was so unique and everything he did was unexpected. “Game of Thrones” is set in such a misogynistic society, but Oberyn championed feminism. He hated the Lannisters, but whole-heartedly believed in Tyrion, and eventually died in his support of the black sheep of the Lannister family. Oberyn made every scene he was in an important one, and is severely missed.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row full_width=”stretch_row” css=”.vc_custom_1460759478734{margin-top: 0px !important;margin-bottom: 0px !important;background-color: #dee2e5 !important;}”][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”Jon Snow’s fate” font_container=”tag:h1|font_size:50px|text_align:center|color:%230a0a0a” google_fonts=”font_family:Lora%3Aregular%2Citalic%2C700%2C700italic|font_style:700%20bold%20regular%3A700%3Anormal”][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”2/3″][vc_column_text]

Erin Yarnall, Arts & Life Editor:
As much as Kit Harrington and everyone else connected to “Game of Thrones” is trying to convince the fan base, there’s no way Jon Snow is dead. If he was, there would be no purpose in going back to any of the storylines at the Wall. “Game of Thrones” goes from character to character, but always focuses on a main character in each scene. Jon is the main character for the Wall, and they can’t just abandon the storylines about the Wildlings, the Night’s Watch or the largest threat Westeros has — the White Walkers. I think there’s a reason Melisandre came back to the Wall after Stannis was killed, and that’s to save Jon Snow.
Ben Savage, Asst. Sports Editor:
Now that “Game of Thrones” is in uncharted territory, pretty much nothing matters. It’s a universe where people can come back from the dead as people, ghosts and zombie things, so it’s safe to assume that the writers have spent weeks planning his revenant return. I foresee the pressure of this situation getting to the writers, forcing them to cede their newly acquired freedom and cash in on the cliché. This way-too-important plot twist probably got completely overthought, and we’ll probably get stuck with some predictable Christ-like rebirth. To make up for this punt of a plot-point, expect to see copious amounts of dragons, gratuitous nudity and a cameo from Martin Freeman.

Danielle Harris, Opinions Editor:
Simply put, Jon Snow’s life sucked. He was a bastard child, never fully accepted into the Stark family. Then he left Winterfell for The Wall where for multiple seasons he froze day in and day out with no Netflix and no Grubhub. In the end, he was betrayed by his fellow watchers and killed for trying to enlist the wildlings’ help in the battle against the White Walkers. While this is all pretty unfortunate, it doesn’t mean the Red Woman will resurrect him or he’ll return as direwolf. All the honorable men die when they reach too far on this show, Snow’s father and brother included. Snow is no exception. If you think any different, you know nothing.

Kirsten Onsgard, Digital Managing Editor:
A lot of this could hinge on who Jon Snow’s true parents are. I feel like Ned Stark was too nice of a guy to cheat on his wife, and there is a reason for them protecting him. Plus, we know Melisandre sees something in him. Is it some special king’s blood – perhaps Targaryen? Is he the true bringer of light, now that Stannis is dead? She will bring him back and try to place him in a position of power — though I doubt he will want it. This could also explain why Melisandre goes to find Daenerys, which we know from one of the trailers.

All photos courtesy of HBO.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/3″][vc_single_image image=”21693″ img_size=”medium” add_caption=”yes” alignment=”center”][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row]