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‘Game of Thrones’ theory: Ned Stark could make a shocking comeback in season 8

Published Mar 7th, 2019 10:05PM EST
Game of Thrones Fan Theories
Image: HBO

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Ned Stark may have died back in season 1 of Game of Thrones, but we could still see him in the upcoming season of HBO’s hit TV series. Well, a version of him, a fan theory suggests, after inspecting the recently released trailer.

The trailer is very dark, and that means we don’t get to see all the details in it. Well, of course it’s dark, because winter is coming. Also, HBO probably doesn’t want to give anything away too soon.

That didn’t stop Redditors from “fixing” the trailer by brightening it up. Here’s what it looks like:

Season 8 trailer enhanced brightness from freefolk

One of the first things that shocked me while watching the trailer was that Arya was afraid of something. Yes, she’s still young, but she’s among the toughest Game of Thrones characters. I can’t recall seeing her this scared.

As you can see in the image above, she’s being chased by something, and is running for her life, after having survived an early attack. Who’s chasing her? It could be anyone, really, including people in the castle. But it’s more likely that undead soldiers are after her, and you can easily see where this is going.

[SPOILERS] Brighter photo showing guy (or guys) behind Arya while she’s running from gameofthrones

As the Night King marches on Winterfell, which is going to be the first major landmark the White Walkers encounter after surpassing the Wall, no matter what route they take, he’ll likely raise more undead to join his army. Among them, we might see the dead Starks buried in the Stark crypt — Ned Stark included.

That would be a brilliant move by HBO, adding extra complexity to the whole plot. For starters, the Night King doesn’t care if he loses any men or women fighting for him. He can raise other dead to join the ranks. Secondly, we’d get to see how the main characters would react, suddenly faced with killing loved ones. Take Arya’s response, for example, and imagine it’s a lifeless, headless, Ned who’s going after her in that crypt. That would be terrifying on so many levels. Even if it’s not Ned Stark, it’ll be equally scary to fight alongside allies only to have to face them once they die, especially if they happen to be family or friends.

If Ned Stark is raised from the dead, however, don’t expect him to look anything like his old self, however. He’s been dead for far too long to be anything more than a sword-wielding skeleton. Plus, he’ll have no head.

An even easier explanation for the scene would be that Arya has finally realized what they’re about to face and she’s just leading the retreat. Behind her, we could have some of the other characters making a run for it, looking for better defensive positions. Whatever the case, April 14th can’t come soon enough.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.