Jon Snow may know nothing but after our ‘Game of Thrones’ season 7 preview, you’ll know everything…
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
The countdown has started — ‘Game of Thrones’ season 7 will debut in less than one week’s time on Sunday night, July 16 with the first episode titled “Dragonstone” dropping at 9pm ET on HBO.
With only seven episodes this season, ‘Game of Thrones’ is expected to be a non-stop, action packed thrill ride with at least two episodes going past the one hour mark including the finale, which is expected to clock in at nearly 90 minutes.
At this point, ‘Game of Thrones’ has gone so far past George R.R. Martin’s source material that there’s really no guide to follow going into the penultimate season although trailers, filming locations and other clues have popped up over the past few months that should give us some clue about what to expect in the season ahead.
As we look ahead towards ‘Game of Thrones’ season 7, we’ll examine every key area on the map of Westeros to see where we left off, what lies ahead as well as a look at new characters joining the campaign and much, much more.
With that said, here’s anything and everything you need to know about ‘Game of Thrones’ season 7 ahead of the premiere on Sunday night!
LET’S TRAVEL THROUGH WESTEROS
THE NARROW SEA TRAVELING TOWARDS WESTEROS
Where We Left Off
Daenerys Targaryen stamped down the uprising from the slave masters in Meereen and Yunkai before handing over control of the Bay of Dragons to her former lover Daario Naharis so he could keep the peace while the people elected new leaders. Meanwhile, Daenerys has taken ships provided to her by a new partnership forged with Yara and Theon Greyjoy as well as the fleet left over by the slave masters to bring her armies to Westeros.
In exchange for their loyalty, Daenerys has agreed to turn over control of the Iron Islands to the Greyjoy siblings under the agreement that they will no longer rape, reave and otherwise plunder once they reclaim their home from their evil uncle Euron.
Daenerys named Tyrion Lannister as the new Hand of the Queen and she then set sail for Westeros — a place she hasn’t stepped foot since she was born and then smuggled out of the country for her own safety. She will arrive with an army of Unsullied as well as thousands upon thousands of Dothraki warriors and three very large dragons.
Daenerys won’t arrive in Westeros without allies after Lord Varys brokered a partnership with Ellaria Sand and her daughters, who have taken over control of Dorne, as well as Lady Olenna Tyrell, who seeks vengeance after her entire family was obliterated by Cersei Lannister.
Where Things Are Going
From the trailers that have debuted already, Daenerys will eventually make her way back home to Dragonstone, which was the ancestral seat for the Targaryen family before her father “The Mad King” was overthrown and the land was gifted to Robert Baratheon’s younger brother, Stannis. It appears Daenerys will turn Dragonstone back into her base of operations as she looks to conquer the Iron Throne and reclaim the kingdom in her family’s name.
A few photos have shown Daenerys landing on a beach, which could mean Dragonstone considering the land sits next to the sea or she could land in Dorne where her allegiances are also running deep with Ellaria Sand and Olenna Tyrell.
Either way, it won’t take Daenerys long to declare war on the ruling family because there’s already been footage seen of her Unsullied army taking on Lannister soldiers in what we have to assume is Casterly Rock — the ancestral seat of the Lannister family. Judging by what we’ve seen already, Daenerys taking on Cersei for control of Westeros will undoubtedly make up a large part of ‘Game of Thrones’ season 7.
Don’t forget Tyrion may despise his sister Cersei but he’s always been protective of his brother Jamie so how will he react when Daenerys declares war on the Lannisters?
As for other characters surrounding Daenerys — Jorah Mormont was last seen being sent off to find a cure for the Greyscale he contracted a season ago. There’s one brief glimpse of a ghastly arm infected with Greyscale during one of the trailers, which may be poor Jorah and that means his could already be sealed.
Grey Worm and Missandei will also get much closer this season as their relationship continues to develop.
Where We Left Off
Jon Snow returned from the dead and reunited with his sister Sansa before they teamed up to take on Ramsay Bolton to reclaim the North in their family’s name. Of course, Jon’s strategy didn’t really work — his brother Rickon was also sacrificed — but thankfully Sansa planned ahead and asked for help from her old friend Petyr Baelish, who supplied the Knights of the Vale as the support needed to overthrow the Bolton regime.
Unfortunately, Sansa’s plans were not rewarded because the lords in the North decided to crown Jon Snow as the new king, which clearly didn’t set very well with “Littlefinger”. He’s been plotting for quite some time to put Sansa on that throne where he would rule by her side.
Elsewhere, Davos Seaworth finally discovered that Melisandre convinced Stannis to burn his daughter Shireen alive in an attempt to win back the North. It failed and Stannis’ army was crushed before he was killed as well. After confronting her with the truth, Jon Snow banished her from the North and told her that if she ever returned that they would execute her.
To the north of the Wall, Bran Stark continued his training with the Three-Eyed Raven where he discovered some rather important information. During a journey back in time, Bran found his father consoling his aunt Lyanna after she gave birth to a baby boy. In the vision, Bran hears Lyanna’s last words where we believe she revealed that the child was the result of her affair with Rhaegar Targaryen — the Last Dragon who was supposed to be the future king of Westeros until he was killed in battle by Robert Baratheon.
That means Jon Snow is one half Stark and one half Targaryen but Bran might be the only person in the world who knows it (although Baelish has hinted that he knows more than he’s letting on).
Unfortunately, Bran made an ill-advised journey to the camp where the White Walkers were mounting their army and he was touched by the Night King, who then launched a full on assault on the Three Eyed Raven’s lair. In the battle, the Three Eyed Raven and the children of the forest were killed along with poor Hodor, who gave his life so Bran could escape.
Bran and Meera Reed eventually encountered a hooded man on a horse who saved their lives and it was revealed to be Benjen Stark — the long lost uncle from the Night’s Watch, who had traveled north of the Wall but then never returned. It turns out, Benjen was killed but was saved by the Three-Eyed Raven where he was turned into a warrior for good while battling against the forces of evil led by the Night King.
Benjen protected Bran as he led him back towards the Wall but then told him that he could not cross through thanks to the magic that protects the realms of men from the dead. Now Bran and Meera have arrived back at the Wall where they will presumably cross through before traveling to reunite with Jon and Sansa at Winterfell.
And finally, Samwell Tarly briefly visited with his family before leaving them to begin his training at the Citadel where he hopes to become the new maester for the Night’s Watch. He’s joined by his lady Gilly and “their” child Sam. Samwell is one of the few people who not only knows about the White Walkers but how to kill them so it’s safe to say he’ll play a part in the war to come.
Where Things Are Going
Jon Snow will be fighting a few battles this season because not only does he know that the Night King and the White Walkers could attack at any time now that winter has finally arrived, but he will also clash with his sister Sansa over the decisions he makes while leading the North. Of course, Baelish will also be a voice in Sansa’s ear, trying to convince her that she should be the one ruling instead of her bastard half-brother.
Littlefinger has been one of the most conniving players in ‘Game of Thrones’ since the beginning of the series — in many ways he helped put all of this in motion when he plotted to kill Jon Arryn, who was Robert’s Hand of the King. Needless to say, Petyr Baelish still has a big part to play in the final seasons of ‘Game of Thrones’ so he’ll certainly have a lot to do during these seven episodes.
Bran’s arrival through the Wall could also come with very valuable secrets if he tells Jon about his true parentage. It also appears that Bran still has some sort of connection to the Night King and that might play a part in how the army of the dead crosses over the Wall to attack Westeros.
There’s also a mythical weapon known as the Horn of Winter that has been talked about in the books but not referenced much in the show. The horn supposedly contains magical abilities that could bring down the Wall. Whether or not, ‘Game of Thrones’ will actually use this weapon remains to be seen but something tells me the Wall crumbling down might just be the conclusion of the season finale.
It’s also clear that Jon Snow will lead a party north of the Wall at some point during season 7 as witnessed from the two trailers that have been released thus far. He won’t be alone when he goes north because his old pal Tormund Giantsbane will be by his side as well as some new friends who will be traveling to join with him from the south. Stay tuned for more on that one in a bit…
RIVERLANDS AND THE IRON ISLANDS
Where We Left Off
“The Kingfish” Brynden Tully was able to recapture Riverrun from Walder Frey, but he was overrun and killed when Jamie Lannister arrived with a garrison of soldiers to take back the castle.
In the aftermath, Jamie had one last moment with his old friend Brienne of Tarth, who was sent to try and form a partnership with “The Blackfish” in an effort to bolster the army fighting for Jon Snow and Sansa Stark. Ultimately, Brynden Tully fell and Jamie said goodbye to Brienne, possibly for the final time as she returned to the North.
Meanwhile in the Iron Islands, banished sibling Euron Greyjoy returned home after many years away where he killed his brother Balon Greyjoy before taking control of the kingdom. After his nephew and niece, Yara and Theon, made off with a big part of the navy, he decided to build an even bigger fleet in his efforts to land in a place of great power.
Euron said he wanted to unite with Daenerys but considering that’s where Yara and Theon went, it’s easy to speculate that there’s another queen to the south that he might be interested in joining instead.
Arya Stark spent most of her season being trained to become one of the Faceless Men — a deadly group of assassins from Braavos — but she ended up turning against them and returning home to reclaim her heritage as one of the last remaining Stark children. Arya finally popped up at the Twins during a celebration between the Frey’s and the Lannisters after they took back Riverrun.
Arya ended up killing both of Walder Frey’s sons and cooking them into a meat pie that she served to their father. Arya then introduced herself to Walder Frey before slitting his throat as revenge for the Red Wedding that ended with the death of her brother Rob and mother Catelyn.
And finally, “The Hound” Sandor Clegane was found alive after he was nursed back to health by a priest who found him on that rocky cliff near death following a fight with Brienne a couple of seasons ago. Unfortunately, Clegane’s friends were all butchered by a group of thieves but he tracked them down to get his revenge before running into his old pals in the Brotherhood Without Banners.
At the tail end of the season, Beric Dondarrion — the leader of the Brotherhood who was chopped down by “The Hound” in battle before being resurrected by Thoros of Myr — said that there was a great war coming to the North and he invited Clegane to join their ranks.
Where Things Are Going
Arya will definitely continue to travel north to be reunited with her family but how long it takes her to get there is anybody’s guess. The looks at Arya from the trailers have been very short so there’s no telling what kind of adventures she might have before finally arriving at Winterfell.
There have been some rumors that Walder Frey may reappear this season, which more than likely means Arya stole his face and may masquerade as him at some point. She still retains the same skills as the Faceless Men but without actually working for the group of assassins. That means Arya may take on several disguises this season.
The Brotherhood Without Banners will arrive in the north as witnessed by several shots from the trailers that show Beric Dondarrion and “The Hound” covered in snow in the middle of a battle. Chances are the Brotherhood Without Banners will lend support to Jon Snow as he prepares to launch an offensive against the White Walkers.
Considering “The Hound” is headed north and so is Arya Stark, there’s a chance this unlikely combo will be reunited as well. Of course the bigger reunion would be Arya finally reconnecting with Jon, who gifted her the sword called Needle back in season one, which is the last time they’ve seen each other.
After taking back Riverrun, Jamie returned home to King’s Landing where he was reunited with his sister after the events at the Great Sept of Baelor. There’s no word on where his pal Bronn will appear but there’s little doubt that he’ll pop up at some point this season.
And finally, Euron Greyjoy will finish building his fleet of ships before sailing towards King’s Landing. In one shot from the trailer it was clear Euron’s navy was in Blackwater Bay, which means he may be teaming up with Cersei to help stamp down the oncoming Targaryen invasion.
Where We Left Off
Cersei Lannister plotted all season long to take revenge on the High Sparrow and his legion of supporters in the Faith Militant. She finally took action on the day of her trial where she was supposed to answer for several moral crimes as well as playing a part in the death of Robert Baratheon.
Along with help from her new friend Qyburn, they discovered that there were barrels upon barrels of wild fire hidden beneath the Great Sept of Baelor. So with all of her enemies in one place, Cersei lit the fuse that ended up destroying the church while simultaneously killing the High Sparrow, Margaery Tyrell, Loras Tyrell, Mace Tyrell, her uncle Kevan Lannister as well as her cousin Lancel Lannister and dozens more.
Unfortunately Cersei’s grief stricken son Tommen ended up committing suicide after the Great Sept of Baelor was leveled, which left Westeros without a king.
In his place, Cersei finally ascended to the Iron Throne where she was crowned queen with Qyburn being named Hand of the Queen.
Where Things Are Going
Cersei’s reign will certainly be disputed — but there’s no bigger threat than the one coming from Daenerys Targaryen and her massive army that’s just arriving in Westeros. Cersei will have her brother Jamie by her side as it appears he’s been named the commander of the Queensguard, tasked with protecting her royal highness.
From all accounts, the bulk of Cersei’s season will be spent defending King’s Landing from the invading Targaryen armies, who will be coming at her from all sides.
If Cersei is able to team up with Euron Greyjoy, it could give her a strategic advantage while battling against Daenerys’ fleet supplied to her by the other Greyjoy children by her side. There have been plenty of fights at sea shown in the trailer so there’s little doubt the Greyjoy family will be at odds quite a bit this season while fighting for different sides.
It also appears that we’ll get our first look at Casterly Rock this season with Daenerys’ army invading, which could lead to Jamie leaving King’s Landing to defend his family’s home.
Jim Broadbent — best known for his role in the ‘Harry Potter’ films — will be playing the archmaester of the Citadell and undoubtedly a mentor to Samwell Tarly this season. There have been rumors that his character will play a pivotal part during season 7 — perhaps unlocking some other key to the looming threat north of the Wall as the Night King mounts his army for an attack on Westeros.
Mark Gatiss — technically he’s not a new character but instead a returning one as the head of the Iron Bank of Braavos. Don’t forget, Robert Baratheon and Tywin Lannister borrowed a ton of money from the Iron Bank and at some point they always get paid back. He may be looking for payment from the new queen in Westeros this season.
Tom Hopper — best known for his work on ‘Black Sails’ — has been recast as Samwell Tarly’s younger brother, Dickon Tarly. Dickon made a brief appearance during ‘Game of Thrones’ season 6 and it appears the recasted role will pop back up this season with Hopper playing the part. Dickon is supposed to be the future leader of the Tarly family so it will be interesting to see what role he plays this season, even if it’s a limited appearance. Don’t forget, Dickon was rather dismissive when his brother mentioned the White Walkers north of the Wall so his fate may already be sealed by the war to come.
Ed Sheeran — yes, that Ed Sheeran — will also make a cameo appearance this season in at least one episode. Rumor has it he interacts with Arya Stark during the season but don’t expect his character to stick around for long. Sheeran has dabbled in acting previously including his role on the short lived FX series “The Bastard Executioner”.
HBO released descriptions and titles for the first three episodes of the season this past week. Here’s what we know:
Episode #61: “Dragonstone”
Debut: SUNDAY, JULY 16 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT)
Jon (Kit Harington) organizes the defense of the North. Cersei (Lena Headey) tries to even the odds. Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) comes home.
Written for television by David Benioff & D. B. Weiss; directed by Jeremy Podeswa.
Episode #62: “Stormborn”
Debut: SUNDAY, JULY 23 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) receives an unexpected visitor. Jon (Kit Harington) faces a revolt. Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) plans the conquest of Westeros.
Written for television by Bryan Cogman; directed by Mark Mylod.
Episode #63: “The Queen’s Justice”
Debut: SUNDAY, JULY 30 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) holds court. Cersei (Lena Headey) returns a gift. Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) learns from his mistakes.
Written for television by David Benioff & D. B. Weiss; directed by Mark Mylod.
THE FINAL SEASON
What we know so far is that ‘Game of Thrones’ season 7 will consist of seven episodes before the final season concludes the series with six more episodes. Show runners David Benioff and Dan Weiss have already started writing the final episodes for the show, but there’s no word on how soon filming could begin.
There’s a possibility that the final season of ‘Game of Thrones’ — either titled as the second half of season 7 or season 8 — won’t debut until 2019.
The one thing for certain is to enjoy this season while it lasts because there are only 13 more episodes of ‘Game of Thrones’ remaining until the series comes to an end.
Don’t forget, NerdcoreMovement.com is your destination for all things ‘Game of Thrones’ including the most detailed recaps in all the known world kicking off with the first episode titled “Dragonstone” on July 16.