Everyone knows that in a world of ice and fire what is dead may never die, but that doesn’t seem to apply if they were killed off on the show but are still alive in the books.
Okay, fellow fans of both A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones: this story is a fun one because it comes from the man himself, Mr. George RR Martin, and it’s just begging us to start obsessing over what it could mean. The author told IGN that he has come up with some sort of big twist for the next book in the series, The Winds of Winter, that the folks behind Game of Thrones at HBO can’t use because they’ve already killed off of a character it involves. Apparently it actually involves a couple of characters, but only one of them is dead on the show. That’s not a lot to go on, but we’ll take what we can get.
Because you all know what this means: let the wild(ling) speculation begin!
NOTE! There are spoilers across the Narrow Sea of this paragraph. If you have not both read the books and watched the show, then discussing any discrepancies between them is a spoiler. So if you want to avoid them stop here.
This could be many people, but my first reaction was that this involves Ser Barristan Selmy. His death on the show was pretty shocking due to how important his role became in Mereen at the end of A Dance With Dragons. Considering how many other characters surround him there that are still alive on the show, and how big that story in Slaver’s Bay is, it means we should expect any and every possible twist in that part of the world.
Of course, the easiest answer might be Stannis. In the books, he is ready to wage war on Winterfell, and while conditions are tough, he does seem pretty sure of himself in the books. (Honestly, I’m the fool that isn’t even convinced he is dead on the show.)
Then again, maybe it’s Mance Rayder that Martin has planned something big for. He’s up in the North where lots of potentially big, explosive things are happening. Everyone in the books already thinks he is dead, so his story can go almost anywhere.
Maybe it’s someone that hasn’t had quite as big a role like Myrcella, who (and this isn’t a spoiler because HBO has already released official photos showing it) is dead on the show but only mutilated in the books. There’s excellent reason to think she is not long for this world, but that doesn’t mean she can’t have something big happen to her or her family.
Then there’s the option that it could be someone we would never even associate with a significant twist, but who is certainly near someone that we’d immediately think of in that scenario. Could this be Grenn or Pyp, two of Jon Snow‘s closest friends at The Wall that are dead on the show but not in the books?
“But he said one of the characters is still alive!” Oh stop it, we all know Jon Snow is coming back.
There is one character that is dead on the show, but alive in the books, that isn’t even really the same character, but could be fertile ground for a big twist. Could this have something to do with Jayne Westerling? I know she never appeared on Game of Thrones, (they transformed her character into Talisa Maegyr), but they basically were the same role. What could the King of the North’s wife and unborn child mean to everything?
I know who it’s not, though–Catelyn Stark. There’s nothing preventing the show from using her.
I am freaking out and will be spending the rest of my day on the internet thinking up other potential candidates for this big twist. Please do the same and report back with your best ideas in the comments section below.