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10 Game of Thrones storylines the show completely abandoned

Thursday 25th October 2018

Game of Thrones may be one of the best shows around, but that doesn’t mean the fantasy epic doesn't occasionally get ahead of itself and run into a brick wall when it comes to a storyline.

Everyone remembers how Gendry was sent off in a rowboat and not seen for the next four seasons, well, that’s just the start of potential storylines that were thrown overboard amidst hopes we'd forget it ever happened.

As HBO brings the show to an end in 2019, it’s a certainty that not every dangling plot threat will be tied up in a neat bow. With this in mind, here are 10 Game of Thrones storylines the show completely abandoned.

10. The other Red Woman

Carice van Houten has terrified us as Lady Melisandre since day one, so the casting of another High Priestess in Season 6 had everyone ready for another witch bitch. Sadly, the casting of Ania Bukstein as Kinvara didn’t exactly (Lord of) light it up.

Arriving in Mereen to offer counsel to Daenerys, Kinvara locked horns with Varys and spouted more mumbo-jumbo about the Lord of Light. Promptly leaving to spread the word of the Mother of Dragons’ reign of fire, Kinvara vanished into the smoke.

9. The Greyjoys

It's easy to forget that the Greyjoy family ever played a role to play in the War of the Five Kings thanks to Game of Thrones avoiding the Iron Islands like the plague. Fans will remember that Balon Greyjoy sat out Season 3-6, Pilou Asbæk was late to the game as Euron Greyjoy, and Yara spent most of Season 7 kidnapped off-screen.

Let’s also try to remember the seldom seen Aeron Greyjoy who briefly popped up for the Kingsmoot. Worse than this, Benioff and Weiss completed axed the character of Victarion Greyjoy and merged him with Asbæk’s character. Maybe we were on a casting budget in Season 6?

8. Lady Stoneheart

Those who’ve read the books will know that the reanimated corpse of Catelyn Stark becomes the murderous character called Lady Stoneheart. Unfortunately, showrunners have confirmed she’ll never make it into the show in a move that even George R.R. Martin has branded a mistake.

There were rumours that Sansa Stark would face an equally grim fate and adopt the mantle of Lady Stoneheart, while others argue that Arya has metaphorically taken on the role by ridding the land of Lannister and Freys. Either way, we’re more than a little miffed that Michelle Fairley didn’t get the chance to come back as a water-logged zombie.

7. The Tullys

Alongside the Greyjoys, another forgotten family are the Tullys. Responsible for gifting us Catelyn Stark—and unfortunately Lysa Arryn—House Tully was sidelined in favour of more interesting storylines.

After escaping the Red Wedding, Brynden Tully returned in Season 6 for the Second Siege of Riverrun. Audiences were left confused when Brynden was half-heartedly killed off-screen and no one knows what happened to Edmure Tully when the castle was returned to Frey forces. Is he left rotting in the Riverrun dungeon with all those poisoned Freys?

6. Dorne

When Game of Thrones gets it wrong, it really gets it wrong. A damp squib of a storyline was Season 5’s maligned trip to Dorne. As well as introducing the unlikeable troupe of Sand Snakes, the show also made a continent-sized plot hole.

As well as killing Prince Trystane and Princess Myrcella, Thrones also offed the ruling Prince Doran and his guards. Ellaria Sand promptly took to the throne until she was captured by Euron Greyjoy and locked away in Cersei's Red Keep. Actress Indira Varma told Entertainment Weekly she won’t be back for Season 8 and leaves a question mark over who’s in charge in Dorne now.

5. Sansa and Tyrion’s marriage

Marriage in Westeros usually ends up in death or rape, so it’s amazing to think that both Tyrion Lannister and Sansa Stark’s marriage went (relatively) without a hitch. The two were wed in Season 3 to shore up the Lannister/Stark relationships, but no one has mentioned it since.

Although the marriage was never consummated, Tyrion and Sansa are technically still married and her nuptials to Ramsay Bolton void. Some are guessing that the two fan-favourites will reconcile in Season 8 -- well, it beats being married to Ramsay.

4. The Horn of Joramun

A potentially massive part of the books that the show has skirted around is the Horn of Joramun. When Sam and Grenn found an old warhorn and some dragonglass back in Season 2, the writers ignored the horn and focussed on the White Walker-dusting weaponry.

In George R.R. Martin’s lore, the Horn of Joramun was said to wake sleeping giants from the ground and help battle the Night King. Well, that sounds like it could come in handy for knocking off a few White Walkers. There is every chance that the Horn of Joramun could be influential in the final run of episodes, but don’t count on it.

2. The High Sparrow’s whisper

A whisper may seem like a relatively minor plot point, but it can mean a whole lot in the world of Westeros. Jonathan Pryce joined Thrones in Season 5 and pitched himself as the unlikely big bad. Frustratingly, the season had the High Sparrow whisper something to King Tommen, only for fans to never found out what he said.

Redditors have theories on what this bombshell was, but it doesn’t help that the High Sparrow and most of the characters involved in the possible storyline were blown up by Wildfire. For all we know, Tommen took the secret to his grave when he hurled himself out the window and became a King’s Landing pancake.

2. The Faceless Men

Changing your face to become a sneaky assassin capable of killing anyone is a neat trick to have in a show like Game of Thrones. Arya’s Season 5 journey landed her at the mysterious House of Black and White.

Being honest, we still know virtually nothing about the Faceless Men or the Many-Faced God. Arya is still using her handy satchel of faces, but where are the rest of the Faceless Men? Also, since the Seven Kingdom’s smallest assassin left the House of Black and White, we have no idea where Jaqen H'ghar is. In fact, all of Braavos is a bit of a grey area for the show.

1. Direwolves

 Aside from Daenerys Targaryen’s dragons, the Stark direwolves have proven themselves to be the most loyal animals in the realm. Unfortunately, after Lady, Grey Wind, and Shaggydog all went to doggy heaven, it only left Ghost and Nymeria still alive. Even then, fans have rightly questioned why they’ve got so little screen time.

The simple answer is that creating those supersized dogs is just too expensive. Although George R.R. Martin has tipped the direwolves to be even more important in his final two books, the show has relegated them to some fleeting cameos. Thankfully, the Huffington Post confirms that Ghost will return for Season 8. We’ll have to wait and see if Nymeria gets another reprieve.

Game of Thrones odds: Who will rule Westeros?

Bran Stark 1/1
Daenerys Targaryen 3/1
Any Child Of Daenerys Targaryen 3/1
Any Child Of Jon Snow 3/1
Jon Snow 7/2
Tyrion Lannister 11/2
Cersei Lannister 9/1
Nights King (Current Leader Of The White Walkers) 10/1
Sansa Stark 12/1
Arya Stark 16/1
Gendry 16/1
Any Child Of Cersei 20/1
Samwell Tarly 33/1
Jaime Lannister 33/1
Lord Varys 50/1
Euron Greyjoy (Crows Eye) 50/1
The Children Of The Forest 66/1
Ser Davos 80/1
Podrick Payne 80/1
Jaqen H'ghar 100/1
Bronn Of The Blackwater 100/1
Grey Worm 100/1
Missandei 100/1
Brienne Of Tarth 100/1
Lyanna Mormont 100/1
Jorah Mormont 100/1
Victarion Greyjoy 100/1
Tycho Nestoris 100/1
Beric Dondarrion 100/1
Tormund Giantsbane 100/1
Theon Greyjoy 125/1
Yara Greyjoy 125/1
Catelyn Stark (Lady Stoneheart) 150/1
Eddison Tollett (Dolorous Edd) 150/1
Meera Reed 250/1
Ellaria Sand 250/1
Ser Pounce 250/1
Illyrio Mopatis 250/1
Hot Pie 325/1
Gilly 325/1
Ed Sheeran 325/1

Game of Thrones odds: Who will rule Westeros?

3. Any Child Of Daenerys Targaryen
8. Nights King (Current Leader Of The White Walkers)
16. Euron Greyjoy (Crows Eye)
17. The Children Of The Forest
33. Catelyn Stark (Lady Stoneheart)
34. Eddison Tollett (Dolorous Edd)
Odds correct as of 11th Apr, 15:37 . Odds are subject to change.
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