Spoiler Warning: The following article contains some information from Carice van Houten (Melisandre) herself that is a teensy bit spoilery.
The last time we saw the Red Priestess, she was looking rather sheepish as Davos called her out for roasting the sweet Princess Shireen like a chestnut on an open fire. Jon Snow banished her from Winterfell, and she road off alone into the night. Is that the last we'll see of Melisandre?
Rewatch Melisandre's final scene in the season finale of 'Game of Thrones' Season 6.
Proooooooobably not. While HBO might protect secrets and spoilers about it's mega-hit TV show more closely than the Mountain guards Cersei, we can still analyze the evidence in front of us to try and answer some questions before Season 7 hits our screens on July 16. So let's call upon the Lord of Light and see what we can see...
Will Melisandre Return In 'Game Of Thrones' Season 7?
While Jon and Davos might have seemed finite in their decision, the fact that Melisandre is still alive is reason enough to suspect that she might be making a comeback sometime in the future. She said it herself:
"I've been ready to die for many years. If the Lord was done with me, so be it, but he's not. You've seen the Night King, Jon Snow. You know the Great War is still to come. You know the army of the dead will be upon us soon. And you know I can help you win that war."
As promised, here is your spoiler-like information from the magnificent Carice van Houten:
Van Houten shared this post of her sporting some intense old lady makeup. Minus those bobby pins, she looks exactly like decrepit crone Melisandre — you know, the one we saw in the premiere of Season 6.
- What If Jon Snow's Life Is Linked To Melisandre's On 'Game of Thrones'?
- Take A Peek At What The 'Game Of Thrones' Season 7 Gang Is Up To Behind The Scenes
- Ed Sheeran Reveals His Character's Fate On 'Game Of Thrones' Season 7
If the revelation of her aged appearance is a reflection on how tired and defeated she's feeling internally, then it makes perfect sense that this is how she'll look the next time we see her. After her humiliating expulsion from Winterfell, she probably just doesn't feel like spending the energy to keep up the glamor magic that supports her youthful disguise.
After seeing this Instagram pic, the odds of a reunion with Melisandre are looking pretty damn high.
How Will Melisandre's Return Affect The Rest Of The Characters On 'Game Of Thrones'?
It seems unlikely — although not totally out of the question — that Melisandre's big comeback would be a scene of Old Melisandre alone, curled up in her little exile bed slipping quietly into eternal sleep. What's more probable is that some other character will pull her back into the action for some reason. Since Davos is bound to be steaming about that Princess Shireen faux pas for quite some time, we can bet that it's probably not going to be him. Jon Snow, on the other hand, was hesitant to kill her, knowing — as she reminded him — that her magic would be useful against the Night King. But maybe neither of those men will have the strength to admit they need her help. Will Sansa be willing to go behind her brother's back (again) to make a deal with a powerful redhead like herself?
Or will it be the younger Stark sister that crosses paths with Melisandre first? After all, Melisandre and Arya have met before. Back in Season 3, the two came face to face while Arya was traveling with the Brotherhood Without Banners. Arya took an instant dislike to Melisandre, which was totally warranted, since she was trying to burn Gendry at the stake. Melisandre told Arya:
"I see a darkness in you. And in that darkness, eyes staring back at me. Brown eyes, blue eyes, green eyes. Eyes you'll shut forever. We will meet again."
Or perhaps it's Daenerys that will enlist the help of the unpopular priestess. While she and Melisandre haven't met officially, Daenerys, Varys and Tyrion did make the acquaintance of Kinvara, another red priestess from Melisandre's order. Perhaps Kinvara alerted them to Melisandre's existence and they might seek her out when they arrive in Westeros.
The third suggestion for Melisandre's return to Game of Thrones Season 7 is based on a theory from Bustle. The theory suggests that, since Melisandre is capable of changing her face and body and is likely well over 100 years old, perhaps she might have been the same witch that gave #CerseiLannister the prophecy about her fate when she was a child. That witch went by the name Maggy the Frog, but in #GeorgeRRMartin's world, it's not uncommon for characters to go by more than one name, especially over the span of decades. If this is true, and Melisandre and Maggy the Frog are one and the same, perhaps it will be Queen Cersei that seeks her out, when she needs magic and power to fight or negotiate with the Night King and his army of the dead.
'Game of Thrones' Season 7 will premiere on July 16, 2017 on HBO.