Game of Thrones star John Bradley, who plays unlikely hero Sam Tarly, says that every episode of the show's eighth season will be epic. As we head towards the last season of the global phenomenon that is HBO's Game of Thrones, expectations are high after the events of the wall-shattering Season 7 finale. Political back-stabbing will give way to clashes between dragons and the living vs. the dead. Whilst the last episodes of the series are obviously surrounded by secrecy, at least one of the show's regular cast has spoken broadly about what we can expect.
When Sam was first introduced as a member of the Night's Watch back in the first season, he seemed to be something of a red-shirt character and destined for an early demise. But as he became a close friend and confidante to Jon Snow (Kit Harington), his significance increased. As Season 7 took its bow, Sam has been responsible for discovering a way to kill the White Walkers, found a cure for Greyscale, and (by way of Gilly) learned of the true heritage of those destined for the Iron Throne. It's safe to say that he is a surprising MVP and one of the most influential regular characters. Even if he did have to suffer the 'most disgusting scene' in the series. For these reasons, he's actually become one of the most popular figures in Westeros with viewers.
Whilst promoting his new film American Satan, Bradley spoke to Huffpost and revealed what fans can expect from Season 8:
"We assembled a team of directors this year who have been in charge of some of our big episodes in the past... Clearly every single episode of the six you've got left in Season 8 is gonna be monumental and needs somebody at the helm who's done that kind of high-stakes, high-octane direction before for us... I think what we used to call Episode 9 in Game of Thrones folklore - the episode when everything comes to a head and you get a lot of spectacular sequences -I think you're gonna get six 'Episode 9s' this year... so I can't wait!"
The directors that Bradley refers to are Miguel Sapochnik and David Nutter, and he takes the opportunity to enthusiastically praise their work. He also applauds the decision to have showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss direct the finale, which he calls 'poetic' and states that they 'deserve the right to finish this show off in the way they see fit'.
We already know that the forthcoming season is the most expensive in the history of the show, and that massive conflicts and special-effects will be a major part of that. Along with the enthusiasm and genuine excitement from a cast member that has been present since the very beginning, it all bodes for an excellent send-off for the much-loved show in its last season.
Game of Thrones season 8 premieres in either 2018 or 2019.