Game of Thrones producers have proclaimed Sunday’s closer will be the best finale yet — if not the best episode ever. That’s setting a very high bar for a show where expectations are already through the roof. (Thrones staged arguably the best battle sequence in TV history last week, yet many fans still griped.) So there’s a lot riding on the finale, which is a super-sized 66 minutes. Book readers will assume they know the answer to these questions below, but the producers usually throw in at least one finale surprise, and the show has been increasingly taking its own unique path so … maybe not? Here are the 5 spoiler-free burning questions we hope will be addressed in “The Children”:
1. Will Tyrion be executed? Our favorite Lannister is locked in the Black Cells and sentenced to death — just like Ned Stark. Sure, Peter Dinklage is the star of the show — but we also know that being a presumed hero on Thrones can make you a big target, and all those great scenes with Tyrion this season fell like a swan song for the character. Plus he escaped execution once in the first season; would it really happen a second time? The only thing that could conceivably save him: Papa Tywin having a change of heart. (Wait: What heart?)
2. Will Jon Snow kill Mance Rayder/survive? We last saw Jon Snow marching unarmed to meet the Wildling leader with a secret plan to try and assassinate him. It’s not only a suicide mission, but one with nearly zero chance of success. Could Sam rise up to become the new leader of Castle Black? Or will Jon figure out some tricky way to escape? Like with Tyrion, we think: They wouldn’t really kill him off, would they? But if he dies, at least Kit Harington will be legally permitted to cut his hair.
3. Is anything going to happen with Dany and/or her dragons? The Breaker of Chains has settled comfortably into managing her pyramid scheme. While her breakup with Ser Jorah was dramatic, her storyline feels ready for some new problem to arise. Also: Where are her dragons?!
4. What’s Arya going to do now? We’ve had three seasons of Arya trying to reunite with her family, and every time she gets close to somebody they die horribly, or she gets captured. She should really just give up on that goal, because it’s clearly not working out for anyone. But since The Hound is in charge, that decision is probably not going to be up to her anyway.
5. Will Bran get anywhere? Speaking of endless journeys, Bran has been heading north since season 2. Granted, his legs don’t work, so we don’t really expect him to get anywhere quickly. But the finale is called “The Children,” which has at least one meaning to book readers with regard to Bran’s storyline that could be promising.
EW has plenty of coverage planned for the finale so be sure to stop by and visit us when you’re finished. There’s going to be a live recap, post-episode interviews and on Monday a super-sized version of our popular Thrones book club discussion.