[Note: This article discusses the future, an endless and shifting realm of possibility and hope.]
It’s common knowledge that the penultimate episode of a Game Of Thrones season is usually when shit goes down. Episodes nine in Westeros are where heads come off, battles get fought, and weddings get bloody, before leaving the season finale to let the survivors recover and reflect on the show’s future plans.
Going off of new episode titles released today by HBO, the series’ sixth season is sticking to that long-established pattern (which was slightly subverted last year, when the big action climax came in episode eight, “Hardhome.”) The ninth episode of this year’s crop is titled “The Battle Of The Bastards,” suggesting that fans are about to see the North-based conflict between walking corpse Jon Snow and walking asshole Ramsay Bolton finally get resolved. It’ll be followed by the finale, “The Winds Of Winter,” whose name is a reference to George R.R. Martin’s long-promised sixth A Song Of Ice And Fire novel.
HBO hasn’t released any trailers or descriptions for the episodes, although they’ll both be directed by “Hardhome” helmer Miguel Sapochnik. We do have a trailer and (typically cryptic) description for the upcoming “No One,” though, which will apparently bring, scheming, tests, and a Jaime-Brienne reunion when it arrives this Sunday at 8 p.m.