Let's all collectively agree to get over Jon Snow, shall we? Ready? 3...2...1... He's dead! Cool; now let's get on with things! I'm not wishing to sound callous, but my aversion to the mass denial that's been going on surrounding Jon Snow's fate at the end of Game of Thrones Season 5 probably comes down to how many other cool characters there are in the A Song of Ice and Fire novels.
There are so many potential plots, and potential protagonists mulling around in the books, that the loss of one really doesn't feel like a loss at all. The whole appeal of Game of Thrones is that the story always continues against the odds and against your expectations. So let's remedy the pain from season 5 to take a look at a few characters who are thus far exclusive to the books, but who could appear in Game of Thrones Season 6 nonetheless.
I was genuinely astounded to find that Quentyn Martell wasn't to be included in Season 5. He's one of the most prominent Dornish characters in the books, and he's arguably the emotional linchpin of A Dance With Dragons. And yet, his story of travelling to Meereen to attempt to woo Daenerys and create an allegiance between Dorne and her Queenship never came to fruition. Quentyn is a dumpy dork with sweet intentions, so would make a brilliant audience insert character.
Given the events that take place at the end of Season 5, his window of opportunity with Daenerys has likely passed, but that doesn't mean the show couldn't employ his character, along with his charismatic guard, Geris Drinkwater in some interesting way. There are still a couple dragons left in that pyramid that he could steal if the mood took him. Go on, Quentyn I dare you! It'll work out fine!
You'll start to notice a theme of characters looking to marry Dany. I suppose George RR Martin intended this plot point to have some dramatic irony, considering that Dany clearly wouldn't be into marrying any of these losers endeavoring to travel across the entire world just to meet her. Euron is one of the more interesting contenders in this respect, being the uncle to Theon Greyjoy, and having traveled the entire world. He's generally not a good guy (I mean come on, he's got an eyepatch), but what's coolest about Euron is his horn, Dragon Binder.
When blown, this ominous horn covered in Valyrian Glyphs is said to put dragons under the control of the horn's owner. Just imagine if Dany was finally able to launch an attack on Westeros with her three dragons, only to have the entire thing foiled by Euron. Why Benioff, Weiss and HBO didn't jump on this character as they approached season 5, I do not know!
I can fully understand Penny's exclusion from the show. Her presence is incredibly easy to mess up, but she's also an addition to Tyrion's story that puts his character in an entirely different light. Penny is one of the dwarfs who performed at Joffery's wedding, whose brother is murdered in Cersei's efforts to kill Tyrion. She then tracks the Lannister down in search for petty revenge, because it's honestly all she has. She actually introduces an element of privilege to Tyrion, given that he's grounded in lamenting the fact he was born as a dwarf, while still growing up as one of the richest people in Westeros. I understand that introducing Penny would be some tricky ground to tread. It's just funny that the show runners are totally fine with adapting rape and child murder, but are still sketchy on adding another little person to the cast.
Where to begin with Coldhands? Even to book readers, Coldhands is a slight enigma, since he comes and goes in the story while appearing to be way more important than his fleeting screen time suggests. He appears in A Storm of Swords as a mysterious figure who helps Bran, Meera, Jojen and Hodor through the woods beyond the wall. Remember how lame that skeleton fight was at the end of Season 4? You know why it was lame? Because Coldhands wasn't there to fight them!
Coldhands is essentially a figure with all the features of a White Walker, yet who appears to have some connection to the Nights Watch, is self determined, and benevolent towards our heroes. He represents the possibility that White Walkers could switch sides, or that there is some even deeper magic going on beyond the wall. Oh yeah, and he rides a giant Elk, if you didn't think he was cool enough!
Are there any favorite characters from the A Song of Ice and Fire novels that you would like to see in Game of Thrones Season 6? Let us know in your own post, by voting in our poll, or by commenting below!