Photo Credit: Helen Sloan/HBO
Arguably the world's biggest TV show, Game of Thrones returns on Sunday (Monday morning in India) for its eighth and final season, which will have a shortened run of just six weeks. For what it's worth, most of the Game of Thrones season 8 episodes will be longer than an hour. With the magic, ice Wall having been brought down at the end of the last season, the living and the dead will naturally face off each other, with mankind's survival in Westeros ultimately at stake. Along the way, in Game of Thrones season 8, a lot of your favourite characters will no doubt die due to their participation in the conflict. And thankfully, there's no one to spoil any of it for anyone, since none of the events in Game of Thrones season 8 are based on the books, with the show having left George R.R. Martin's words behind a few years ago.
Here's all you need to know about the final season of Game of Thrones.
In the US, Game of Thrones season 8 begins Sunday, April 14 at 9pm ET on HBO. Up in Canada, you'll need a subscription to Crave's premium service — Crave + Movies + HBO — to enjoy Thrones at the same time. In the UK and Ireland, it's Monday, April 15 at 2am BST on Sky Atlantic and Now TV.
Down under in Australia and New Zealand, the final Thrones season kicks off Monday, April 15 at 11am AEST on Fox Showcase.
The final season of HBO's fantasy epic has the shortest run of any season so far, with just six episodes. Here are all the available details (dates are based on IST):
Despite the show killing off characters every season right from the start, Game of Thrones still has a pretty sizeable ensemble cast of main and supporting characters. With the confirmation at the end of last season, there's now two Targaryens on the show — Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) and Jon Snow (Kit Harrington) — though one of them doesn't even know his heritage.
Then we have three Starks and Lannisters apiece: Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner), Arya Stark (Maisie Williams), and Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead-Wright) aka the Three-Eyed Raven; Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage), Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), and Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey).
Beyond that in the main cast, there's Theon Greyjoy (Alfie Allen), Davos Seaworth (Liam Cunningham), Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie), Samwell Tarly (John Bradley), Gilly (Hannah Murray), Missandei (Nathalie Emmanuel), Varys (Conleth Hill), Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen), Sandor “The Hound” Clegane (Rory McCann), Tormund Giantsbane (Kristofer Hivju), Gendry (Joe Dempsie), Bronn (Jerome Flynn), and Melisandre (Carice van Houten).
Moving to the supporting cast, we have Grey Worm (Jacob Anderson), Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbæk), Beric Dondarrion (Richard Dormer), Night's Watch acting Lord Commander Eddison Tollett (Ben Crompton), Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane (Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson), Brienne's squire Podrick Payne (Daniel Portman), Qyburn (Anton Lesser), Edmure Tully (Tobias Menzies), Lyanna Mormont (Bella Ramsey), Robin Arryn (Lino Facioli), Yara Greyjoy (Gemma Whelan), and the Night King (Vladimir Furdik).
The first piece of footage from Game of Thrones season 8 arrived in early January, courtesy of a look at HBO's programming slate for 2019. A week later, we got the first teaser that also carried the premiere date. While fans waited for a trailer, HBO dropped a bunch of first-look images in early February. The full-length trailer finally arrived in the first week of March, and we got a couple of promos at the start of April to hold us over till release day.
Fortunately, there haven't been any episode leaks from the upcoming season yet. And that will be hopefully continue to be the case as the final season progresses, unlike last time, when two of seven episodes in season 7 were leaked.
If you're a fan of Game of Thrones, check out Transition, Gadgets 360's gaming and pop culture podcast for a discussion around season 8, popular fan theories, and our favourite characters. You can listen to it via Apple Podcasts or RSS, or just listen to this week's episode by hitting the play button below.