Brienne Of Tarth Set To Return With A Vengeance For ‘Game Of Thrones’ Season Six

There’s nothing worse than having your favorite character reduced to a footnote in a TV series or book. Fans of Game of Thrones know that feeling. Book readers had to wait 11 years for Tyrion to return after George R.R. Martin left everyone east of King’s Landing out of A Feast for Crows. And TV show watchers have had to deal with even more of that — Gendry, Bran, Walder Frey, Yara, Hodor… you could fill a boat with characters dropped for a season or two. In fact, someone did:

And if your character isn’t completely dropped, there’s always a chance their plotline could be less than stellar. Take Brienne of Tarth, for example. She spent the majority of season five looking out a window waiting for a candle to be lit. Meanwhile, we had to endure several episodes worth of the Sand Snake sideshow. Both those plotlines were HBO originals, not ones found in the books — is it any wonder readers are getting twitchy as the show runs out of track supplied by GRRM?

The good news? Vanity Fair has pieced together some pretty convincing evidence that season six will delve back into the books and pluck out plotlines that were previously removed, including one involving Brienne. Spoilers and speculation ahead!

Season six of Game of Thrones is already set to bring back the Greyjoys in a big way. The brothers of Balon Greyjoy play big roles in book four and five of the series, but many were concerned HBO wanted to excise that entire part of the book in their continued attempt to simplify the story and not overload viewers with more characters. And it looks like Brienne of Tarth’s adventures through the Riverlands from A Feast for Crows will also finally occur.

In the book, Brienne and Pod trek back and forth through the area searching for Sansa Stark in vain. In the end, they get captured by the Brotherhood Without Banners, the same group that kidnapped Arya Stark and sold Gendry to Melisandre, and sentenced to death by their new leader Lady Stoneheart, also known as the reanimated corpse of Catelyn Stark. To save her squire’s life, Brienne agrees to help the Brotherhood capture Jaime Lannister, which she apparently does in the three paragraphs of A Dance with Dragons she appears in.

Now for the evidence for and against all this happening in season six. There’s the casting calls for new characters: Several “outlaws” have been cast, as well as a “sly-looking” character who is “unable to live up to the demands of his savage father.” That sounds like book character Merrett Frey, who also gets kidnapped by the Brotherhood as part of their revenge for the Red Wedding.

The jury is still out on Lady Stoneheart making an appearance. Catelyn Stark actor Michelle Fairley has denied that she is returning for this season, but it’s pretty clear at this point that producers and actors are willing to lie through their teeth to keep plot points under wraps. But as cool as her character was in the books, and as crazy as it would be to leave quality content like that out, her role isn’t essential to the rest of the Brotherhood’s plot. So, in the end, a lack of Stoneheart doesn’t change anything.

We’re largely in uncharted territory now with Game of Thrones season six, and it’s almost a guarantee that the producers will throw curveballs at us, even as they use content directly ripped from the books. But, at this point, we’ve got a pretty good idea of what Brienne’s storyline is going to involve — and the best part about it is that it involves way more screen time.

(via Vanity Fair)