Game of Thrones fans develop new theories about Bran, time-traveling White Walker sculptor


Last night, HBO released a new teaser trailer showing Arya, Sansa and Jon reuniting in the crypts underneath Winterfell and facing down the approaching White Walkers.

After our heart attack subsided (premiere date!), we began to wonder why Bran Stark was excluded from this family meeting. As the Three-Eyed Raven, is he no longer part of the Stark family? Are the crypts not wheelchair accessible? Is this just a promo and not meant to be picked over for hidden meaning?

No, it couldn’t be that last one.

Naturally, the internet is all over the new teaser, and some fans have come up with very creative theories that explain Bran’s absence. Let’s take a look.

First, let’s go back to a theory that’s been floating around out there for while: Bran Stark is the Night King. Head here for the long explanation, but the gist is that, at some point in the future, Bran will warg into the past and possess the body of the man who will turn into the Night King, and then get stuck in it. “It is beautiful beneath the sea,” the Three-Eyed Raven once told him,
“but if you stay too long, you’ll drown.” Under this theory, Bran is in the teaser; he’s the one creating that fell mist.

Anything is possible, but we don’t subscribe to this theory. Even Isaac Hempstead Wright, who plays Bran, has shot down the idea. “It just doesn’t feel like Game of Thrones,he told Nerdist. “It feels a little bit too Hollywood.”

Another theory centers around the statues Jon, Arya and Sansa find in the crypts, statues made in their likenesses.

The only statues in the Winterfell crypts are of dead people. Is HBO trying to tell us that these three are going to die? Redditor Fried_Cthulhumari has another idea:

"My personal belief is this is not a dream but a real scene, with the characters finding statues hundreds or even thousands of years old. Bran has shown the ability to communicate with the past, he could have arranged for them to be built. What better way to prove that he has seen the past then to place something there that his siblings can physically see and touch?"

We don’t see it happening, but that is a very cool idea.

Personally, I think it’s more plausible that Bran, using his powers, is showing his brother and sisters a vision. We’ve had hints that Daenerys’ arrival at Winterfell could sow division among the members of House Stark. Ahead of its showdown with the army of the dead, perhaps Bran is simply trying to remind his siblings of the real threat they all face?

Or, again, this could just be a promo with no bearing on the literal events of season 8. The good news is we’ll only have to wait a few months to find out!

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h/t Esquire