Game of Thrones actor John Bradley, perhaps more widely known as Jon Snow's trusty sidekick Samwell Tarly, has promised viewers that every character will be placed outside of their comfort zone in the show's forthcoming final season. Indeed, Game of Thrones season eight is currently in production and although it seems that the last batch of episodes won't drop until 2019, there is already a glut of speculation and rumor regarding how HBO's George R. R. Martin epic will conclude.
With seven seasons already under its belt, Game of Thrones has repeatedly pushed each of its ensemble cast into unfamiliar territory and this was particularly true of the most recently aired episodes. Daenerys Targaryen finally came face to face with her mortal enemy and a little bit more than face to face with fellow lead protagonist Jon Snow. Meanwhile, the oft-unappreciated Sam Tarly found himself in possession of one of Westeros' biggest secrets as he and Bran Stark uncovered Jon's true parentage.
And it appears that all of these dramatic developments will continue in Game of Thrones' farewell season. In an interview with TV Guide, John Bradley claimed:
"Each of the characters this year is placed in a completely alien environment at some point in the season that they've never been placed in before. The thrill is seeing how they react to it and how they respond... This season, I think more than any other, is stretching these characters."
Perhaps the most interesting and pertinent question relating to Bradley's comments is whether or not the new environments he speaks of are literal, metaphorical or a mixture of both. Certainly, it would be fascinating to see some Game of Thrones' characters venture to new locations - Cersei Lannister trekking North to face the White Walkers or Bran finding himself stuck in the past, for instance. However, some characters such as Daenerys, Jon and Tyrion have already more or less completed the full Westeros grand tour and that could be where the figurative element to Bradley's comments comes into play. After his pensive glance at the end of season seven, Tyrion could find himself as a villain in season eight, while Jon and Dany could be about to discover the joys of parenting.
Alternatively, assuming Bradley knows something the fans don't, his reference to an "alien environment" could be hinting towards Game of Thrones exploring as-yet-unseen areas of George R. R. Martin's fictional world. With The Night King a threat to every living being, could Jon and Dany find allies from lands that even they have yet to step foot in?
Game of Thrones season 8 is expected to premiere in 2019.
Source: TV Guide