Theories and predictions have been part of the fanaticism for “Game of Thrones” since before it premiered on HBO.
But next season, all bets are off. Fans will only partially be able to lean on what they have read in the books as the show surpasses George R.R. Martin’s published novels. That has put the theory mill into overdrive.
What will the producers come up with for season six when it arrives April 24? There are very few indications of where they’re going next.
So fans have been combining what they know to be true from the show with what hasn’t appeared yet from the books, then piecing together what actors have been saying in interviews, photos from the set, and comparing everything against the newly released season-six trailer.
From hidden blood ties to big conspiracies, here are the most popular “Game of Thrones” fan theories:
Warning: TV show and book spoilers ahead.
Yes, theorizing about Jon Snow (Kit Harington) surviving the Night's Watch attack from the end of season five has become an internet-wide sport. But if you knew the theory coming up next, then you'd know why we have to establish the theories that bring him back to life.
There are several ways that Jon Snow may still live another day: First, he somehow survives the attack on him. Second, he's able to warg into his wolf, Ghost. Third (and seemingly the most possible after seeing the full trailer), Melisandre (Carice van Houten) brings him back to life. Fourth, he's reborn in fire when the Night's Watch tries to burn his body. Fifth, he returns as an ice zombie, better known as a White Walker.
Source: Time magazine
There is a theory that Jon Snow's real parents are Lyanna Stark (sister of Ned) and Rhaegar Targaryen. That would make him Daenerys' (Emilia Clarke) nephew. This theory has huge consequences for the story if it's true.
First, being a Targaryen gives him a line to the throne. But he has to be alive in order to chase it. It also means, referring back to the resurrection idea, that he could have a rebirth after being engulfed in flames similar to Daenerys.
The three-headed-dragon theory states that three Targaryen descendants will rule the dragons. The first is Daenerys. The second depends on the theory that Jon Snow is really a Targaryen. So who's the third?
Many fans believe that Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) completes the trio. According to their thinking, Tyrion was the product of an affair between the Mad King and Tywin's wife, Joanna Lannister.
For proof, they look to Tyrion's phsyical differences, beyond the dwarfism, from the other Lannisters. Also, things that were said by his father that could sound like a man denying his dwarf son in embarrassment, but can also be seen as that of a man who knows that he didn't father Tyrion.
For example, Tywin (Charles Dance) denies Tyrion the inheritance of Casterly Rock, saying: 'Men's laws give you the right to bear my name and display my colours since I cannot prove that you are not mine.'
And then just before Tyrion kills him, the dying man's final words are, 'You are no son of mine.'
Although she lost her life during the murderous Red Wedding during season three, there's reason to believe that Lady Stark (Michelle Fairley) may come back again. In the novels by George R.R. Martin, Lady Stark's corpse is brought back to life under the name Lady Stoneheart. The new character is basically a zombified version of her.
Sandor Clegane aka The Hound (Rory McCane) was supposedly killed during his fight with Brienne (Gwendoline Christie), but many fans are placing their bets on a theory called Cleganebowl. The belief basically says that a priest saved The Hound from his mortal wounds and he sets off for a destiny that sees him locking swords with his brother in a trial by combat.
The casting of Ian McShane in a top-secret role on season six has made this theory seem very plausible. He's believed to be playing a priest. Plus, McShane has basically confirmed the theory.
Tommen Baratheon (Dean-Charles Chapman) has proven that the apple can fall far, far from the tree. And some fans are betting that it will be kindness (and the loyalty of those who follow you for your goodness) that will bring King Tommen to the end of the Game of Thrones.
Another theory says he won't be alone. Fans have been predicting that Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) gets Tommen's wife, Margaery (Natalie Dormer), out of the dungeon.
Eventually, they reunite with Tommen and help keep him on the throne. Jaime will have completed making up for his previous sins and becomes Hand of the King for his last living son.
We've known Bran Stark is coming back after sitting out season five, but seeing him in the trailer next to the Night's King has really amped up the fan chatter.
There are several theories surrounding Bran's importance to the story. His return might have major effects as Stark loyalists could rally around him (especially after what happened to Jon Snow). There could also be some revenge to be had against the Lannisters. Bran lost the use of his legs after being pushed out of a tower window by Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) in a bid to keep his incestuous relationship with his sister, Cersei (Lena Headey), a secret (Bran had seen them together).
Actually, most fans can see that Arya Stark probably won't complete her training to become one of the faceless. The question is how. Here are three theories:
1. Arya simply fails the training. She hasn't quite mastered dropping her ego, letting go of her possessions, and letting go of the desire for revenge, among other things. So she's cut loose.
2. Arya settles on another path. She may just see a vision (via a burgeoning warg ability) or actually decide that her fate lies elsewhere. In that case, she escapes the House of Black and White.
3. Arya escapes with her life. Arya may discover that the Faceless Men have ulterior motives. What if they want to kill her and keep her face for their collection? She doesn't stick around to find out.
Known as the Great Northern Conspiracy, this fan theory is one of the most popular. There are several layers to it, but here's a short synopsis: The Starks were a point of pride for the people of the North. Since Ned Stark (Sean Bean) was killed, the seeds of the conspiracy were planted. But following anger about the bloody events of the Red Wedding, chaos in the North increases and conspiracy grows.
Many who were loyal to the Starks go on to serve other ruling families, but really they wait. When the right time arrives, they will attack from the inside and out. The end goal? To place a Stark back on the throne in Winterfell.
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