1. Expect Fewer “Big Moments”
This past season was packed with shocking, plot altering moments right up to the very last episode, because of how many of these moments there were in the 2nd half of Storm of Swords. Season 5 will draw its content from the first half of both A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons, the next two books in the series. So expect next season to be more like season 3, with a lot of set-up early leading to a few climatic moments in the end. I will say, the producers of the show are on record saying they are excited about Season 5 now that they’ve plotted out the events of the episodes when just a few months ago, they were concerned they weren’t going to have enough exciting moments for next season.
2. Expect a Chaotic Battle for Power in Westeros
Tywin’s death will create quite the scramble for power. In season 3 and 4, Tywin Lannister was the unchallenged puppet master in Westeros, pulling all the strings. Who takes control now that he’s gone? No one else had Tywin’s combination of battlefield expertise, mental cunning, or political shrewdness, so expect many players familiar and new to stake their claim now that Lord Tywin is gone.
3. Action Should Pick up Beyond the Narrow Sea
Seeing Daenerys spending the entire 2nd half of the season inside a pyramid talking, getting her hair done, and having “relations” (off screen) with the New Daario made me dread every time the scene shifted across the Narrow Sea. However, I expect we will see much more conflict as well as some new players (once again, some familiar… some not) arrive in Slaver’s Bay to spice things up while Dany attempts to rule in the land she’s trying to permanently free from slavers.
For the first four season, GoT has not relied on the flashback scene. Any information need from past events was told to us by characters who experienced them, but there has yet to be a scene showing past happenings. Based on the casting leaks that have come out for Season 5, at least one flashback will be taking place. With Bran now able to warg his way into a tree, and with the knowledge he will gain from the frail old man hanging from the tree (aka the three-eyed raven), I expect the crippled Stark to witness some past events that have already affected the current state of Westeros or will affect future events once the knowledge becomes known.
5. New Characters
Doran Martell- Oberyn’s older brother, the prince of Dorne, who is far less athletic but significantly more calculated than his deceased brother.
The Sand Snakes- The nickname for the Red Viper’s 8 bastard daughters. At least three will be cast for next season and they take after their father.
Maggy the Frog- A fortune teller who predicts bad tidings for one of the characters in Westeros.
This is not a complete list, just a few of the major names that will have an impact on events next season. And, expect many more to be revealed as shooting begins for Season 5.
(Editor’s Note: This article was written by Jeff Merrick)