Two months feels like a long time to wait for Game of Thrones season 4, especially considering how much HBO has been plugging the show lately with images, trailers and featurettes. Game of Thrones has been going from strength to strength, with gross numbers for the third season averaging about 13.6 million viewers and 5.4 million viewers tuning in for the telecast of the season finale, and there's a lot of anticipation for the continuation of this epic historical fantasy.
The fourth season finds the last few remaining Starks scattered across Westeros, Jaime Lannister reunited with his family in King's Landing, Daenerys Targaryen struggling to control the great army that she has amassed and Jon Snow facing more than one danger approaching from beyond the Wall.
All these storylines, and many more besides, are the subject of a hefty new Game of Thrones featurette, which includes plenty of new footage from season 4, behind-the-scenes clips and anecdotes (including Peter Dinklage and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau's choreographed dance number), and interviews with the cast and crew as they attempt to answer some of the fans' most burning questions.
One of the things that Game of Thrones can really boast about - aside from plot developments that make fans want to curl up in a corner and never leave - is its huge scale and the above-average budget that comes with it. Shot in a range of different countries with some truly stunning landscapes and sets to work with, there's an epic feel to the show even when there aren't any massive battles raging.
The featurette also drops some hints about the directions that the various plot threads of season 4 will take. After a triumphant end to the third season, Daenerys will soon have to face up to the consequences of some of her past actions. For example, you just can't walk into a slave city, kill all of the slavers and walk away expecting to leave a utopia behind. For another example, dragons might be cute when they're young but once they're the size of a house they can start to get a bit unruly.
Jaime's reunion with the other Lannisters should also be interesting, since they've been separated for some time, and in this season he apparently becomes the only ally to an increasingly endangered Tyrion. The "Purple Wedding" of Joffrey Baratheon to Margaery Tyrell is set to be a big event this season, but showrunner D.B. Weiss promises that it is only one climax in a season full of big moments. It might be best to keep a box of tissues on standby, just in case.
Game of Thrones returns to HBO on April 6, 2014.