We don’t need to tell you that Game of Thrones is one of the smartest, sneakiest shows out there - each and every episode is packed full of subtle references and callbacks, while the constant foreshadowing can often leave us kicking ourselves when we still don’t see a big twist coming.
The reason it’s so brilliant at this? Well, simply, it’s because of George R. R. Martin, a man who takes pride in being able to stun us speechless, before saying, “But look, I told you this was going to happen ages ago - it says it right there!”
TV as a whole - let alone Game of Thrones - has rarely seen a bigger twist than the infamous Red Wedding - during which a swathe of our favourites were killed off in one fell swoop by a family who essentially amount to side characters. It was brutal and devastating, and some of us have never really recovered.
And yet it’s taken until now for fans to notice a very clever bit of foreshadowing from the third book - A Storm of Swords - during Arya’s travels with The Hound.
As you’ll remember, Sandor Clegane was planning to deliver Arya to The Twins to return her to her family, in the hope that he’d be given a reward, and perhaps asked to serve under the Starks as payment.
In this chapter, Sandor is explaining this plan to Arya, and in particularly Arya-like fashion, she’s having none of it, telling The Hound that Robb would never accept him.
The chapter ends with Sandor telling her: “Keep your mouth shut and do as I tell you, and maybe we’ll even be in time for your uncle’s bloody wedding.”
It literally says the words bloody wedding, right there on the page.
Looking back now, it’s not even that subtle, but given The Hound’s typically crass manner of speech, it’s totally understandable why everyone paid no notice to the wording at the time.
The revelation was spotted by zlow821 on Reddit, and it led to another user sharing yet another very clever piece of signposting by Martin.
As a number of fans pointed out in the comment, Martin likes to hide clues at the very end of his chapters, and this one spotted by StudiosS and ShmedStark is a blatant signposting of Game of Thrones’ biggest secret.
With the show now officially confirmed to not be returning until 2019, we’re facing our first Game of Thrones-less year since 2010, which is rubbish really, isn’t it?
Maybe Martin will even finally finish The Winds of Winter before Season 8 hits our screens, though I wouldn’t put any money on it.