Oftentimes, the Game of Thrones penultimate episodes are the really action-packed ones, as the series finales often set up for the next season. However, during 2015, the body count was high on HBO’s fantasy drama, mostly thanks to the season finale. Now, that we’re gearing up for Season 6, there are so many directions the show is going in, it’s hard to keep up. Which is why we’ve put together this awesome guide looking into everything we know so far about Season 6 of Game of Thrones. Take a look at all the information we’ve put together, below.

Looking for all the details regarding Season 5 of Game of Thrones? No problem, head here.

Game of thrones
What Is Coming Up On Game Of Thrones Season 6?
We'll let you know about Episodes 9 and 10 as soon as we know! The Hound
What Happened During The Most Recent Episode?
Lady Brienne and Pod headed to Riverrun where she struck a bargain with Jaime Lannister. She got inside to convince The Blackfish to abandon his home and meet-up with Sansa, but he wouldn't budge. Pod and Brienne escaped, but Jaime was told The Blackfish was killed. Elsewhere, The Hound sought revenge for the loss of his mentor, The Waif chased after Arya until the Stark girl got the upper hand and The Mountain protected Cersei from some pesky Sparrows. In Meereen, Tyrion made some blunders related to the slave owners, but Dany may have reappeared in just the nick of time.

Game of thrones
What Has Happened during the rest of Season 6?
What didn't happen during Episode 1 of Season 6, really? First and foremost, we finally found out what happened to Sansa and Theon after they escaped. Essentially, they were almost caught by Ramsay's minions, but Brienne saved the day. Over in Dorne, the heroes weren't so lucky. Instead, the Sand Snakes gutted their leaders, killing Martell men. Dany very nearly was raped by a new Khal, but talked her way out of it, while Jorah and Daario searched high and low for her. Ser Davos found out that Jon Snow had been murdered and there was a lot of unrest on The Wall. Most shocking of all, Melisandre finally de-robed and revealed her true age to all those who were watching. It was some unsettling stuff. More on the shocking Melisandre reveal, here.

In "Home," we finally got the return of a few characters from past seasons, including but not limited to Bran and Yara Greyjoy. Elsewhere in the episode, new character Euron Greyjoy appeared in the Iron Islands and Balon Greyjoy was killed off by the newcomer. He was not the only character who died in this episode, either. After Ramsay Bolton found out his father's new wife had a male child, he clearly felt threatened and unexpectedly killed off Roose Bolton. While death came to a few characters, Ser Davos also implored Melisandre to bring Jon Snow back to life. At first, it seemed as if she had failed, but soon we saw Ghost lift his head from under the table and Jon Snow gasped for breath. He's back.

Episode 3 was actually a fairly slow episode. We finally caught up with Samwell Tarly and Gilly, who are headed to the Citadel. In addition, Arya is finally able to fight an attacker even though she is still blind. After waking up, Jon Snow had some philosophical moments before ultimately deciding to execute his attackers via hanging. He then left the Night's Watch. Bran is still training and saw a moment with his father as a young man. His father defeats some foes on the way to find his kidnapped sister Lyanna, but the scene doesn't play out the way Ned Stark used to tell it. Both King's Landing and Meereen are facing major problems. Finally, Rickon Stark and Osha are delivered to Ramsay Bolton, which is the worst.

book of the stranger

Episode 4, "Book of the Stranger," was a strong episode of Game of Thrones, not only because it saw characters Sansa Stark and Jon Snow reunite on the small screen, but also because Dany had her first strong moment in quite a while. Sansa wasted no time when she met up with Jon Snow, attempting to convince him to rally the Wildlings and fight the Boltons. It didn't seem to be working, that is, until Ramsay played his hand and sent a letter stating he had Rickon in his grasp. Meanwhile, in King's Landing, everyone is still scheming to get Margaery out of jail. In the Iron Islands, Yara prepared for the Kingsmoot. The best moment in the episode came near the end, when Dany used her fire resistance to burn a room full of Dothraki Khals alive.

Talk about an emotional episode. While Dany gave Jorah an order to find a cure for his greyscale and Arya wrestled with her feelings regarding her assignments from the House of Black and White, the real big deal during Episode 5 ("The Door") had to do with Bran and Hodor. While training with the Three-Eyed Raven, Bran learned that the Children of the Forest were actually responsible for creating the White Walkers. However, Bran also encountered the Night's King in a vision and was marked. This allowed the White Walkers to find the cave where Bran was training and to attack. In the event that ensued, the Three-Eyed Raven, Leaf, Bran's direwolf Summer and others were slaughtered. Bran was forced to warg into Hodor within his training, causing a connection between the past Hodor and the present. Afterwards, the normal boy could only slur "Hodor," a variation of "hold the door."

During Episode 6, "Blood of my Blood," Arya directly defied the House of Black and White and saved the life of a character she was told to poison. She fetched Needle and ran away. Elsewhere, Dany pulled another sweet trick with her dragon. In King's Landing, Tommen and Margaery have apparently sided with the High Sparrow, causing a shitstorm. I guess teenaged boys do tend to defy their parents, and Tommen defies in a big way when he ships his "uncle" Jaime to Riverrun to defeat the Blackfish. We also met Samwell's family and an unexpected character returned. Uncle Benjen is back and he has a crazy backstory.

The Hound is back. Let me repeat, The Hound is back. He showed up early in the episode during scenes featuring newcomer Ian McShane, as reports from earlier this season anticipated. Unfortunately, things weren't looking all that rosy for Sandor Clegane. Although he joined up with a seemingly peaceful cult, the Brotherhood Without Banners showed up and went on a murder spree late in the episode. Elsewhere, Arya also got stabbed and her fate was left fairly uncertain, which was a nice nod to The Hound's fate being uncertain a few seasons ago. Margaery spent the episode scheming against the High Sparrow, while Jon Snow, Sansa and Ser Davos did some scheming on their own, attempting to unite the north to rise up against the White Walkers. Jaime also met up with The Blackfish and Bronn finally got some good dialogue!

When Will Game Of Thrones Season 6 Air?
While one season of Game of Thrones did hit the airwaves at the very end of March,most have premiered in April and recently Game of Thrones announced Season 6 will begin airing on April 24, 2016 at 9 p.m. ET, on HBO.

Luckily, HBO does a great job of keeping up fan interest during the long summer and winter months before the drama returns to the schedule. This typically includes an information-filled Comic-Con panel, although A Song of Ice and Fire author George R.R. Martin has didn't attend this year. Also different about this summer: the Season 6 panel included a lot of stories from the set, but less casting information than normal!

jon snow stab
What Have We Seen So Far
In addition to a poster featuring a bloodied Jon Snow and a few shots in the HBO end of year promotional video, Game of Thrones has released the first big teaser for Season 6 of the hit drama, which features voiceover from Bran, not to mention another creepy teaser set in the House of Black and White. By the time we got the first footage from the new season, the showrunners were adamant that Jon Snow is dead, and we even get to see him laid out on a slab of brick. But that's not the most interesting thing about the jam-packed footage the network has released so far:
In the second trailer for the hit drama, we hear more about the major war against the dead and get to see Sansa in a warrior costume for the first time. These episodes are looking better and better by the minute
game of thrones cast
Who Is Cast In Season 6 Of Game Of Thrones?
It would take too long to list every single one of the characters still alive and breathing on Game of Thrones. While the pool of characters on the series was thinned considerable during the Season 5 finale, suffice to say, expect to see plenty of Daenerys (Emilia Clarke), Cersei (Lena Headey), Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), Tyrion (Peter Dinklage), Sansa (Sophie Turner), Arya (Maisie Williams), Littlefinger (Aidan Gillen), Theon (Alfie Allen), and Sam (John Bradley-West) next season, not to mention a slew of other characters.

It’s probably easier to mention who we may not be seeing next season. Season 5 saw us saying farewell to Ser Barristan (Ian McElhinney), Shireen Baratheon (Kerry Ingram ), Mance Rayder (Ciarin Hinds), Janos Slynt (Dominic Carter), Maester Aemon (Peter Vaughan), Hizdahr zo Loraq (Joel Fry), Selyse Baratheon (Sarah MacKeever), Stannis Baratheon (Stephen Dillane), Myranda (Charlotte Hope), Meryn Trant (Ian Beattie), Myrcella Baratheon (Nell Tiger Free), and of course, Jon Snow (Kit Harington). More on Jon Snow later.

Also, we are definitely going to see the return next season of Bran and Hodor, who were cut out of the plotlines during Season 5 as the story grew bigger and bigger. We will get to see them again in Season 6. Likewise, The Hound has been rumored to make an appearance in Season 6, which is the biggest surprise of them all.Recent reports have also indicated that fan-favorite character Brynden "The Blackfish" Tully will return to the plot for a fun storyline potentially involving holding a fortress for the late Robb Stark (more info).

Several old characters will be returning, but will be played by new actors. Casting reports indicate that Ned Stark will be back in Season 6. Since he's very, very dead, he'll show up in a flashback sequence and will be played by Sebastian Croft. Max Von Sydow will be playing the Three-Eyed Raven, formerly played by Stuan Rodger.

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