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'Game of Thrones': Women take center stage in new season

A long, cold winter for “Game of Thrones” fans is about to end, and not a moment too soon. First, fans got photos for the new season, then an incredible trailer, and then another, even better trailer.

The wait ends Sunday, as Season 6 of the award-winning HBO show debuts at 9 p.m.

Fans are clinging to every last drop of information on their favorite characters – Daenerys, Brienne, Jamie, Arya, Tyrion, Sansa and, of course, Jon Snow.

Here’s what will happen to your favorite characters and a few things to watch for this season. Be careful for spoilers up to the new season.

"Game of Thrones" women take the main stage

  • Get hyped for the “Game of Thrones” women this year. Whether it’s major players like Arya, Sansa and Cersei, or minor characters like Melisandre or Brienne, “Game of Thrones” has a large amount of female characters at the forefront of its storylines this season. Sure, they’re all in bad situations, but hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, #AmIRight? Speaking of scorned women, Cersei’s got her groove back, and with an undead giant on her side, it’s a bad day to be a Sparrow.
  • Losing Myrcella was a big blow to Papa Jamie, but seeing images of him in the trailer at the head of the Lannister/Tyrell army are a good sign for his mental recovery.
  • Is anyone’s life worse than Tommen’s right now? His sister and brother are dead, his wife is in jail, and now everyone has seen his mother naked (he’s going to be at the butt end of all the “Yo Mama” jokes in school).
  • Sansa's alive and escaped Winterfell, but remains in the North and is being chased. Both the Greyjoys (Theon's family) and the Umbers (higher ranking northern family) are set for returns this season. She'll be sure to head to one of them for safe keeping.

Turning up the heat in the East

  • After leaving Meereen in a literal blaze of glory last season, Daenerys now finds herself in the hands of the Dothraki. The trailer shows her stripped naked, so things aren’t great, but Drogon’s even bigger now and has worked up an appetite for some Dothraki barbecue.
  • With a fresh cup of wine in his hand, Tyrion is back in a position of power. This time, everyone’s favorite drunken imp is looking to keep Meereen from going into a full-fledged Civil War with help from Missandei and Grey Worm. Can you think of a better position for a guy who just “drinks and knows things?”

Visions and #AllTheHype

  • Bran and Hodor are back after taking a season-long vacation off north of The Wall. Bran is going to be a key cog to the “Game of Thrones” universe, but not in the way, say, Daenerys would be. With his training from the Three-Eyed Raven, Bran will reveal the history of several main characters through visions
  • Remember the cool scene in the first trailer where the knight in shining silver armor is dual-wielding two longswords? You can thank Bran for that flashback later this season.
  • Speaking of that knight, that portion of the trailer revealed a “Tower of Joy” flashback sequence. Not sure what it is? (Potential series spoiler) Do a quick Google search of the “R+L=J” theory. That one scene could be the most important in the whole series.

One final thought

Did you think I’d forgotten the biggest question of the “Game of Thrones” offseason?

Jon Snow was on the wrong side of an assassination at the end of last season, Members of the Night's Watch assassinated Jon Snow at the end of last season sending millions of “Game of Thrones” fans from across the globe to break down the trailer like the Zapruder film during the Kennedy assassination.

How can I put this without breaking too many hearts … Jon Snow is dead. But there’s a reason Melisandre is at The Wall.

Remember back in Season 3, Episode 6, when Melisandre learns that Beric Dondarion was resurrected not just once, but on six separate occasions by Thoros of Myr – a former drunk who admitted he “didn’t believe in (the Lord of Light)” and he “always (had) been a terrible priest?

Melisandre has done terrible things – creating a deadly shadow baby with Stannis for one – but she’s always been a devout red priestess. Even though she’s recently failed with Stannis, she’s a much better priest than Thoros.

Don’t be too shocked when she raises Jon from the dead.

Anthony J. Machcinski writes weekly reactions to “Game of Thrones” for FlipSidePA. Follow him on Twitter @ChinskiTweets.