After waiting almost a year, tonight HBO’s megahit Game of Thrones finally returns to the small screen. Fans of the epic drama have been debating the fates of their favorite characters since the controversial season finale that may or may not have killed Stark bastard Jon Snow. While this cliffhanger is perhaps the most talked about plot point at the moment, there is a larger world and quite the myriad of stories being continued in Season 6. With so many characters, relationships, and conflicts being explored, it’s easy for the casual viewer to forget the long history of the previous five seasons. Luckily, we’ve got a solution.
A die hard Game of Thrones fan put together an epic retrospective of the first 5 seasons, and it might be exactly what you need to watch before the premiere tonight. Check it out below.
Epic is really the only word to describe this video. Don’t you feel like you just got the cliffsnotes version of Game of Thrones?
Superbly edited, the retrospective ties together stories that otherwise would have been identified separately. One of the most effective moments using this device is when Brienne’s battle with The Hound is edited together with Oberyn Martell’s skirmish with The Mountain. Seeing the two brothers fighting for their lives at the same time really hammered in just how similar they are.
While The Hound and The Mountain have nothing but disdain for each other, they were both on the Lannister’s payroll and battled an unlikely foe who could have killed them. Additionally, both the Hound and The Mountain’s fates are ambiguous at the premiere of Season 6. Since Arya didn’t actually kill The Hound, we’re not sure if he was somehow able to recover from his injuries. Additionally, The Mountain seems to have somehow been revived by Qyburn and now is a strange zombie creature that we don’t know much about.
A bit later, the motif of sacrifice is used when recapping Season 5. In these moments we are shown Stannis giving Melisandre his daughter Shireen, just as Cersei’s hair is cut by that scary nun lady. We see these big sacrifices, and are then shown if it works for the characters. The Boltons’ troops descend upon Stannis’ meager rabble of soldiers, as Cersei makes her way back to The Red Keep in King’s Landing. Once again, these stories seem disconnected at first glance, but parallel each other upon closer inspection.
The one moment that I wish this retrospective included was Lysa Arryn's plot line with Petyr Baelish. When he and Sansa make their way to The Eyrie, it finally becomes clear that Lysa poisoned her husband, Jon Arryn, at Littlefinger’s request. This action, as well as Lysa’s letter to her sister accusing the Lannisters of killing him, set up the entire action of the first season. It caused the rift between the Starks and the Lannisters, which would eventually take Ned’s head. If you’re looking at this video in order to become reintroduced to the various characters and moments from Game of Thrones, I’d think this revelation should be included. Petyr is the one pulling the most strings, and I’m sure we’ll get plenty of his schemes in Season 6.
Game of Thrones Season 6 premiers tonight on HBO. Make sure to check back at Cinema Blend after the episode for discussion on all the WTF moments and craziness that will ensue.