When we left off, we'd actually resolved a fair number of questions. The war between the Starks and Lannisters has ended, the wildling army was routed, Tyrion had escaped execution, and Arya was on a boat to Braavos. So is there really anything left to look forward to?
Here are my top five storylines going into the next season of Game of Thrones. Some of these I have an idea about because I've read the books, but with the changes that have been made recently, there are no guarantees. These are the five questions I've got going into the next season.
5. What happens when Arya actually arrives in Braavos?
I'm not like most people in that I don't love Arya's storyline. I liked The Hound, and I did love that moment when Arya murdered those Freys right after The Red Wedding. So I acknowledge that there's potential here for some fun times. Braavos is also a compelling place, from what we've heard so far, so I'm eager to see what the city has to offer.
4. What the hell is going on in the Iron Islands?
This question definitely derives more from the books than the show. It seems like the show has gone away from the Ironborn as a storyline, other than Theon/Reek out of necessity. But my feeling is that there's more going on here. I mean, remember that Balon Greyjoy was one of the names that Stannis gave the Red God when he did his little blood magic with Gendry. Robb Stark and Joffrey Baratheon are dead, and their deaths sent tidal waves through the kingdoms. Surely the third name has some value as well.
3. How does Dorne react to the death of Oberyn?
Oberyn became one of the most popular characters in the show during season 4, which obviously sealed his fate. But seriously, Oberyn was a "Prince" of Dorne, brother of Doran, and father to many dangerous daughters. Oberyn and Doran's sister Elia was murdered by Gregor Clegane, a Lannister bannerman. You may also remember that King Tommen's sister Myrcella was sent to Dorne back in season 2 and betrothed to Trystane Martell, son of Doran, adding another complication to the relationship between the throne and Dorne. All of this adds up to, Dorne has a lot of interconnected pieces with the Lannisters, and we've only seen Oberyn. All the talk is that we'll see a lot of Dorne this season; I'm looking forward to finding out what they have to say.
2. What will Jamie and Cersei do without Tywin pulling the strings?
This is a question I have some sense of an answer to, based on the book content, but that doesn't mean I know anything. Tywin had relative control over the queen, but she's been becoming more and more unspooled since Joffrey's death. Will Cersei go completely off the deep end now? Tyrion's escaped, her controlling father is dead, and her soft son sits upon the iron throne. And what about Jamie? He has to know that Tyrion killed their father (and Shae, but who cares). While Jamie clearly hated much about his father, I don't think he ever wanted him dead. Their reactions might be the best part of this first episode.
1. What's going to happen to Jorah Mormont?
I've always liked Jorah, both Mormonts actually. I (and I'm sure all guys) have a bit of experience with and can sympathize with unrequited love. We didn't see much deception at the beginning really; Jorah seemed perfectly devoted to Daenerys from the get-go, and it's possible that he truly was. He may have sought only to prevent Viserys or Khal Drogo from conquering Westeros, and once they had both died, and Dany was on her own, his loyalty was unfettered. Regardless, he's been cast out from Daenerys' city, and is going...where? We have no idea. Even in the books, Jorah simply disappears (for a while). This is one of those circumstances where a non-central character from the books is probably going to get some extra story. And if you're not sure if you like that, consider that large portions of Robb Stark's story, Varys' story, Baelish's story, and The Hound's story were all constructed for television. Plenty of good TV in there, and there's another opportunity for the same here.
Oh my god, tonight's the night. I wish I didn't have to work so I could watch it right away. Don't ruin anything, I'll watch it late tonight!
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