The creepy, mysterious new teaser trailer released this week for the 6th season of HBO’s Game of Thrones has sparked much discussion from the fans with many believing that it is foreshadowing to the death of most of the main characters, Tyrion, Arya, Sansa, Cersei, Jaime and Daenerys. However, could it, in fact, be implying something else?
The trailer shows The House of Black and White, a temple of worship to the Many-Faced God, which was also where Arya spent most of her time last season. Whilst Arya was staying in the temple, we learn that the room known as the Hall of Faces contained preserved faces of dead people that the followers of the Many-Faced God use to disguise themselves when assassinating those assigned to be killed. It then seems typical that this trailer would show characters who are dead on the show as faces on the wall. This includes Ned, Catelyn and Robb Stark, and King Joffrey, and is occupied by memorable quotes from each of the characters in an echoed, eerie tone.
Then the trailer decides to pull on our heart strings even more by showing us fan-favourite Jon Snow. After being betrayed by his men last season and stabbed to death, the loveable Stark b*stard has been added to the list of dead casualties. Or has he? Almost all fans are desperately hoping and theorising that Jon is going to be resurrected, whether that be through magic, in spirit or even as a Wight to serve the White Walkers. The fans don’t seem to really care how or in what form Jon returns because they just want him back. Therefore, some fans are understandably upset at this trailer as it presents Jon as a definite dead character. However, as the majority of theorists believe that Jon will be resurrected and not simply just “saved”, it means that Jon will have to physically die in the first place in order to be brought back from the dead. So don’t worry people, this trailer doesn’t influence or discredit the idea that Jon Snow could return. (He’s just dead at the moment.:)
Now, what this clip does next seriously confused people as it showed the majority of the main characters that are still alive on the show on the wall with the dead. This is quite uncomfortable to watch because most of these characters are all-round good guys that fans like watching. To be honest, I don’t think the writer of Game of Thrones would kill off this group of characters purely because they are such main characters and fan-favourites that literally run the show. Without these characters, there wouldn’t really be any point in the story as we wouldn’t care about the plot any more with the main protagonists dead. (This is why many people believe Jon Snow has to return, because he was what made us care about what happened at the Wall.) However, we should know by now, and all the deaths on the show remind us of this, that George R. R. Martin is prepared to kill any main character to show us the danger and reality of a fantasy world. So it’s not strange to feel a little concerned for some of the protagonists here; anything is possible, and any one of them could drop dead at any moment.
Now, to the question in hand: Is this image of the surviving characters on the Wall of Faces foreshadowing to their deaths? In my opinion, no. I think that it is much more likely suggesting that life and death are not too different. As we’ve seen on the show, dead people come back to life, and healthy characters are murdered just as easily, and, like what followers of the Many-Faced God believe, death can be a blessing and sacrifice. The main point of this is that people who are alive and people who are dead should not be distinguished as two separate groups as “All Men Must Die”. These characters are all going to die eventually, and join those who are already dead, so it feels more like a teaching from the Many-Faced God himself; that we shouldn’t pity the dead, and try and separate ourselves from them. What I took away from the trailer is that, if anything, this image of the characters who are alive, alongside those who are dead, supports the theory that Jon will return. It could even indicate the resurrection of other deceased characters as well.
Anyway, I liked how the trailer showed the more loveable surviving characters on the wall. You may disagree with me on this because Cersei is there but, after last season where she was forced to walk naked through Kings Landing as atonement for her sins of incest and adultery, I feel that a lot of viewers have gained more sympathy for her, and at least understand her character a bit more. To put it simply, the trailer would not have had the same reaction if, let’s say, they put Ramsay’s face on the wall. The point of the teaser was to create suspense and shock that our beloved characters, all of which we have followed since Season 1, are being threatened with death. I personally love how Tyrion is in the centre of the frame, as he is the most likeable character, being an outcast but also being kind, light-hearted and funny.
That’s all folks!