It has been a whirlwind week for fans of “Game of Thrones.” Anticipation for the upcoming fifth season of the HBO series – which premieres on April 12 – has reached a fever pitch following the release of the first full-length trailer and the Internet has been awash with theories about the new episodes. One theory that emerged this week – only to be disproved – was the appearance of one Lady Stoneheart. However, another popular “Game of Thrones” theory (cough, “R+L = J,” cough) may have just been confirmed.
First, let’s talk about Lady Stoneheart. Readers of George R.R. Martin’s “Song of Ice and Fire” book series were disappointed when the character – the vengeful, gruesomely reincarnated Catelyn Stark – did not appear in Season 4 after playing an important role in the books. However, hopes were reignited that her debut was coming in Season 5 when IMDb listed the actress who played Catelyn Stark, Michelle Fairley, in the credits of an upcoming episode as “Hooded Woman.” Fans immediately erupted – originally on Reddit – into a frenzy over what seemed like confirmation of Fairley’s return to the series. Unfortunately the rumor was quickly shot down.
"There hasn't been any discussion about [Fairley] returning to the show after Season 3," a representative for the actress told the Huffington Post. "As of now, this is completely incorrect."
So, either the IMDb listing is erroneous or “Game of Thrones” is going to great lengths to preserve a big surprise for its fans. Fans will have to wait to know for sure.
Meanwhile, there were developments this week in another major “Game of Thrones” theory – known as “R+L = J.” The theory, which claims that Jon Snow (Kit Harrington) was not the son of Ned Stark (Sean Bean) but rather the son of Prince Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark, Ned's sister, seemed to be confirmed by the release of Martin’s original outline for the “Song of Ice and Fire” series. The outline mentions a since-discarded – both in the books and HBO series – plotline involving a romantic relationship between Snow and Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) that heats up when “the secret of Jon’s true parentage is finally revealed in the last book.” While that romance never came to fruition (Isn’t one sibling romance on the show enough?), there is no reason to believe the idea that Jon’s parents don’t include Ned would have been shelved. That would lend some credibility to the R+L = J theory, even if it will not be confirmed until the last book, and consequently, the last season of the show.
At the end of the day, fans will have to wait for the series to conclude to know for sure which theories are true. Season 5 of “Game of Thrones” will premiere on April 12 on HBO. Do you think R+L = J is true? Tweet your thoughts to @Ja9GarofaloTV.