Game of Thrones fans that have read the books have had a bitter sweet experience for the last two seasons, since they mostly followed the essential story beats of the books—but NO MORE. Beginning with season 3, it will be a lot harder to get spoilers from George R.R. Martin’s books. In particular, it will not be a simple copy of A Storm of Swords. Which brings us to our first season 3 spoiler:
A Slightly New Chronology
Seasons 1 and 2 followed the first books pretty closely, by now it should be apparent that this isn’t the case with season 3. For season 3 of Game of Thrones the produces will use A Storm of Swords, the third book, in a fractured sense mixing in happenings from later on in the series as well.
“We’re not looking at our series as a book-by-book adaptation so much as an adaptation of George’s entire saga.” David Benioff said when season 3 was approved by HBO last year.
Get Ready for a Whole Bunch of New Faces
Season 3 will expand the cast significantly. Here’s a breakdown of who is to come: Ciaran Hinds as Mance Rayder, the King of the North; Richard Dormer as Beric Dondarrion, the leader of the Brotherhood Without Banners; Tobias Menzies as Edmure Tully, brother of Catelyn; Diana Rigg as Olenna Tyrell; and Thomas Sangster and Ellie Kendrick as Jojen and Meera Reed.
If you follow British TV you’ll be thrilled by a couple of familiar faces: Mackenzie Crook of The Office will play Orell Skinchanger, while Iwan Rheon of the Misfits will play Ramsay Bolton, Roose’s illegitimate son.
New (And Unlikely) Alliances
Who was surprised when Varys and Ros formed a partnership last season? That will continue to develop is some very unexpected ways this season, but its hardly the only incidence of opposites attracting in this season of Game of Thrones. Queen Regent Cersei (Lena Heady) will become closely allied with her brother, Tyrion the imp (Peter Dinklage). “It’s sort of an interesting dynamic between those two. They share a common ground because they’re both terrified of their father.” Heady told EW.
Another alliance no-one could have seen coming is Jamie and Brienne. Jamie’s captivity might be set aside when Brienne relies on him to fend of some attackers on the road.
More and More Magic … Please
It took the series, as well as the books, a while to get around to the magic, thanks for Martin’s engrossing political landscape, but eventually they did. So far we have Dragons and the White Walkers, and in season 3 of Game of Thrones we will see more of theme than in the past two seasons combined, but this season will also introduce the Reeds and begin taking Bran’s storyline down a solidly mystical path. Paul Kaye’s Thoros of Myr is also said to have quite a knack for resurrection. Stay tuned!