If you’re a fan of Game of Thrones, you know that people come and go like ships from King’s Landing. So it is wise to not get too attached because in the land of Westeros,everyone is expendable. But the good thing is that for every Ned Stark who loses his head, we get a new Prince Oberyn to root for (although his head was crushed soon after his arrival). With season five upon us, we decided to introduce the new faces we’ll meet in the new season. But first, let’s remember those we lost in season 4.
Joffrey Baratheon jumped high on everyone’s, “Can’t wait until he gets it” list as a prince when his father Robert Baratheon came to the north to bring Ned Stark to King’s Landing. From the start, he was preening like a peacock and had the smooth demeanor of a medieval American Psycho that seemed to ooze through the screen. We watched his meteoric rise to king after his father’s death, as his power drove his descent into evil even faster. Joffrey’s special brand of madness made him the little monster only a mother could love and made him hated by almost everyone else. The apex could be a coin toss between using Littlefinger’s best whore for a brutal homage to St. Valentine, his treatment of Sansa Stark or his cowardice when his city was under attack that had him running to his mother. His poisoning and subsequent painful looking death at his wedding seemed well earned.
The cold and calculating patriarch of the Lannister clan earned as many enemies as he did admirers. Never considered really evil, he had a very strong sense of family and took the Game of Thrones as a game of chess, when everyone else around him seemed to be playing checkers. But it was his treatment of his children, specifically Tyrion that ultimately caused his down fall. After Tyrion’s escape from a death sentence orchestrated by his sister and father, Tyrion found his love in his dad’s bed and his father on the toilet. After a brief exchange, Tyrion learned that the debt he owed his son was finally due, and a Lannister always pays his debts. And Tywin paid with his life.
Jojen Reed was the wildling seer who had been told by a vision to travel with his sister to find Bran Stark and help him find the three-eyed raven. After surviving, a wildling attack, being captured by renegade men of the Nightswatch and seizures from his visions, he led Bran, his sister and Hodor to the lair of the three-eyed raven. But he was attacked by skeletons and in lieu of a worse fate was killed by his sister.
Catelyn Stark’s strange sister who was the wife of Jon Arryn, the former hand of the king. After the death of her husband, Lysa sent a note to her sister Catelyn advising her that it was the Lannisters who had killed Jon (but we would later find out this was a ploy orchestrated by Littlefinger) and to be careful of them. Eventually, Lysa would be reunited with her co-conspirator and lover Littlefinger, but like all good things in Westeros, they weren’t meant to last. Littlefinger had brought her niece Sansa back to the Eyrie, and in a jealous outburst she attacked the girl. Littlefinger intervened and then pushed Lysa out of the moon door.
A gift from Tyrion Lannister’s sell sword Bronn from a hard fought battle, Shae was a whore who seemed to be a bit more. Tyrion fell in love with her, so much so that he brought her back to King’s Landing with him despite his father’s orders. Tyrion tried to keep her secret and even upon his announced engagement to Sansa Stark and subsequent wedding, he made Shae Sansa’s hand maiden to keep her close and safe. When it was known that she was in danger, despite his feelings for her he made arrangements for her to leave King’s Landing. However, at his trial for the murder of King Joffrey, Shae testified against him, making public all of their most tender secrets. When Tyrion made his escape, he saw Shae in his father’s bed and strangled her.
A wildling warrior from north of the wall, Ygritte was fierce and part of a wildling scouting party that came across Jon Snow and a group of men from the Nightswatch. Ygritte was captured and Jon found himself unable to kill her. Eventually, she escaped and led Jon into a trap. Jon eventually joined the Wildings of Mance Rayder and he and Ygritte fell in love. They were part of the wildling party that climbed the wall, but when Jon made his escape Ygritte shot him with three arrows. During the wildling attack on Castle Black, Ygritte and Jon finally faced off. But it was just briefly, as a young boy from a town the wildlings raided previously killed her.
The Red Viper of Dorne, Oberyn Martell is a member of the House Martell that rules Dorne. He is the younger brother of Doran, the current Prince and Elia Martell, the late wife of Rhaegar Targaryen. Oberyn traveled to King’s Landing under the guise of attending Joffrey’s wedding but really meant to seek revenge for the rape and murder of his sister and her children by The Mountain Gregor Clegane. During Tyrion’s trial for murdering Joffrey Baratheon, Oberyn volunteered to be his champion and finally faced off with The Mountain. But The Mountain severely wounded him he was ultimately killed. .
Head of House Martell, the ruling house of Dorne, Doran Martelll is the Prince of Dorne and older brother of Oberyn and Elia. He ignored the invitation to the wedding of King Joffrey Baratheon and sent Oberyn instead. He has now lost his brother and sister to the Lannisters and his son Trystane is betrothed to Cersei Lannister’s daughter Myrcella.
Son of Doran Martell, Trystane is a member of the house Martell and betrothed to Myrcella Baratheon to ensure an alliance between Dorne and the Lannisters.
Myrcella is not exactly a new addition but more of a return from a hiatus. The last time we saw her, she was sailing away to Dorne to be wed to the Prince’s son as part of a bargain to strike an alliance between Dorne and the Lannisters. She is the daughter of Queen regent Cersei and her brother Jaime Lanniester.
From the free cities of Norvos, Areo Hotah is the personal bodyguard of Prince Doran Martell of Dorne.
The Sand Snakes
Affectionately known as the Sand Snakes, they are the daughters of the late Oberyn Martell. While they all have different mothers and very different personalities, they are extremely close and an elite fighting group when together. With the death of their father Oberyn, they are out for revenge against the Lannisters.
Obara, the eldest daughter, is the most like her father in personality and fighting style. He instructed her in the use of the Dornish spear himself.
Nymeria is the second oldest of the sisters and inherited her father’s zeal for strategy. She is also a formidable fighter, having been taught to use a whip in combat by her mother who was a noblewoman.
Tyene is the youngest of the adult trio of Sand Snakes, and is the eldest daughter of Oberyn and Ellaria Sand. She is the most impetuous of the three and has an affinity for poisons, both qualities inherited from her father. She wields double daggers coated with poison into battle.
The fifth season of Game of Thrones kicks off Sunday, April 12 on HBO.
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