Though winter has come for much of the northern hemisphere, a new season of Game of Thrones is still a few months off. Premiering a little later than usual this spring, season 6 is being met by fans with both excitement and apprehension.
The end of season 5 left many characters in dicey situations, ones that won't be so easily resolved come the beginning of the season 6. And yet, though exciting these dangling threads may be, they're accompanied by a strong sense of uncertainty. Who lives? Who dies? These are questions that no fan -- not even those who've read the books -- can answer.
It was a blow for many to learn that The Winds of Winter would not publish ahead of Game of Thrones season 6 premiere, but it's also allowed for a certain leveling of the field to occur. Book readers won't necessarily know all the twists and turns coming this season, meaning that every week Game of Thrones will pack surprises no one saw coming.
Because of this, season 6 feels even more exhilarating than previous seasons. As if now, anything really could happen. For Game of Thrones star, Emilia Clarke, knowing that the television show is going beyond the books has made her feel both "excited and nervous." She also promises (in a short, red-carpet chat with E! News) that the surprises coming this season will be "the biggest moments on television that have ever existed."
That's a pretty tall order, but were any show to deliver on creating the "biggest moments" that have "ever existed," it'd be Game of Thrones. I mean, just consider the shocking moments Thrones has delivered already: Ned's beheading, Dany "birthing" dragons, The Red Wedding, The Purple Wedding, Jaime losing his hand, Theon losing his... you know. The series has made its name with the unexpected, and season 6 is looking to out do every previous season.
As for what next season could have in store? Well, there's Tyrion still in Meereen with an army coming his way, that's sure to involve more than a few surprises. Dany is stranded in the midst of an enormous khalasar, though Drogon is lurking nearby and likely to be upset would any harm to come to his mother. Sansa and Theon were last see jumping from the walls of Winterfell, and it seems unlikely Ramsey will let his favorite toys escape without chase. And, of course, Cersei has been "shamed" and is almost certain to seek revenge. And that's even before Jaime arrives with the news of what happened to poor Myrcella!
Yet of all the ifs and whats to come, one of season 6's big moments must relate to the fate of Jon Snow. Death is simply too easy of answer, and with the late Lord Commander already prominent on the first poster for Game of Thrones season 6, how and as what Jon Snow returns is definitely going to be a big, surprising moment. (Unless one of those popular fan theories proves true, in which case we've already known for years.)
Unsurprisingly, Clarke doesn't have much to say about Snow, only reiterating that whatever it is, "it’s going to be big." That's just the tagline for Game of Thrones season 6, isn't it? It's going to be big.
Game of Thrones season 6 will premiere on Sunday, April 24th, 2016 on HBO.
Source: E! News