[Warning: This article contains potential SPOILERS for Game of Thrones Season 6.]
Filming is currently underway on Game of Thrones Season 6 across its various locations. And in Northern Ireland, where much of the series is filmed, there's been a flurry of activity.
The tiny corner of the small island has recently played the part of both The North and the Iron Islands, as well as hosting many of the show's interior scenes at a studio in Belfast. Northern Ireland also serves as the stand in for the Riverlands and, in this specific case, Riverrun, which makes a return in Season 6 after not appearing since Season 3.
A return to Riverrun means a return of the Tullys, though let's make it clear right here: this is not about Lady Stoneheart. Whether or not the infamous character will ever appear on the television show is easily the second most talked about gossip concerning Game of Thrones (the fate of Jon Snow is obviously number one), but this news isn't directly to do with her.
According to Los Siete Reinos (via Winter Is Coming), actor Clive Russell, better known to us as Brynden “the Blackfish” Tully, Catelyn Stark’s uncle, has been sighted on set. The Blackfish was last seen at The Red Wedding, though fortunately for him, he exited the dining hall before the real festivities kicked off. In the bloody aftermath his body was never found and it was assumed he had fled back to Riverun.
In the novels that is precisely how events shake out, with Riverrun remaining one of the last holdouts against the Lannister/Frey alliance. The never-ending siege at Riverrun is also why Jaime is sent to the Riverlands, to negotiate a surrender from the stubborn Blackfish. Also according to LSR, that's what is happening in Season 6.
Jaime's trip to Dorne last season was an off-book adventure, but Season 6 will set him back on the path readers are familiar with from A Feast for Crows. However, he'll retain Bronn as his traveling companion instead of Sir Ilyn Payne, whom he travels with in the books. LSR is also reporting on a scene where the Blackfish is firing flaming arrows at his enemies, and though that isn't explicitly a scene from the books, it sure sounds like the siege of Riverun and Jaime's adventures in the Riverlands are things that're happening next season.
What do you think of Game of Thrones finally returning to Riverrun? Will it be a plot that remains close to the source material? Or will the HBO series continue to toy with book readers' expectations? Drop us a line in the comments below!
Game of Thrones season 6 is slated to debut on HBO in Spring 2016.