Our long night is over, Game of Thrones fans: HBO has given us our first official glimpse of season 8…all three seconds of it, bundled into a sizzle reel for the network’s upcoming shows:
That’s it; a few seconds of Jon Snow arriving back at Winterfell, hugging Sansa, and her looking intensely at something offscreen. It’s not much, but with months to go before we see the final product, it’s enough for us to obsessively unpack.
This doesn’t look like the last hug Jon and Sansa shared when they saw each other for the first time in years at Castle Black. There, Sansa tearfully flung herself into her brother’s arms, and after everything she’d gone through over the past several seasons, who could fault her? But here, there are no tears. Sansa seems wary, even tense. Why might that be? We’re guessing it has to do with whatever, or whomever, Sansa is staring (glaring?) at.
She could be looking at Arya or Bran, but her look seems too severe for that; following Littlefginer’s execution, she’s on pretty good terms with both of them. Alternatively, if she were looking at a dragon, we’d imagine her eyes would be wider and her jaw much closer to the ground. No, we suspect that Sansa is looking at Daenerys Targaryen, newly arrived at Winterfell.
It wasn’t too many years ago that soldiers from the North and the Vale fought against the Targaryens during Robert’s Rebellion. During season 7, Sansa had trouble keeping these lords and their heirs in check, and is probably worried that the prospect of them working with the daughter of the madman they fought a war to dethrone could cause problems. Remember: many of these lords counseled Jon not go to Dragonstone last year, and Sansa was right there with them.
And all of this will likely be made worse when the lords learn that Jon hasn’t just made an ally of Daenerys but rather bent the knee to her as his queen, if they haven’t found out already. Add all of that up, and Sansa has good reason to look concerned.
That said, we’re hoping Sansa and the lords at Winterfell will learn to see Dany as an asset. The king they elected may have bent the knee to someone they mistrust, but in return, their ranks are swelled with Unsullied soldiers, Dothraki riders and two dragons. Sansa worked during season 7 to fortify Winterfell and the North against an invasion from the army of the dead, but it may not be enough. Once the Night King comes knocking, Dany’s forces may well mean the difference between victory and defeat, and it will be hard not to appreciate their value then. While there may be some tension between Dany and Sansa initially, we’re betting Sansa will come around.
Sophie Turner has said that, in season 8, Sansa will have “a family behind her.” That sounds positive. Of course, she also said the final episodes would be “full of betrayal,” so it’s hard to know what to think. You know what? Maybe she’s just looking at Ghost as he takes care of business in the courtyard.
What do you all make of this? Sound off below, and let’s pray to the Seven that a full trailer is just around the corner.