When Benjen Stark (Joseph Mawle) made his grand reappearance in "Blood of My Blood," it resolved one of the great unanswered questions in Game of Thrones' mythology. And in this week's "The Broken Man," the Hound (Rory McCann) was seen again after being left gravely injured by Brienne's (Gwendoline Christie) sword way back in Season 4.
Both men were thought to be dead, or perhaps just forgotten by the labyrinthine storytelling of HBO's fantasy drama, with fans hoping that we hadn't seen the last of either. Well, hope prevailed! To rephrase the famous saying of the Greyjoy squid people, "What is assumed to be dead, may never die."
But even though we've been ecstatic over these two huge comebacks, Game of Thrones still owes us some answers on the status of some other characters who are missing, presumed six feet under, or shoved aside for more interesting stories. Since the show is on a roll with bringing back some important players, we'd like to remind it that there are still a few characters it needs to check in on.
Gendry (Joe Dempsie)
Who he was: The bastard blacksmith son of Robert Baratheon (Mark Addy), Gendry became a huge part of Season 3 when Melisandre (Carice van Houten) was looking for the blood of a king for her leech-y seances and fiery incantations. He also helped out Arya (Maisie Williams) as her traveling companion, and quickly developed a beefcake reputation from some fans for his kindness to Arya and his general hunkiness.
Where we last saw him: Ser Davos Seaworth (Liam Cunningham) broke Gendry out of the Dragonstone jail Melisandre held him in and put him in a rowboat, despite Gendry saying he didn't know how to swim and had never been in a rowboat before. It's easy for a sea-faring smuggler to toss a kid in the ocean, isn't it? For all we know, Gendry's been paddling around in a circle for a few seasons, still trying to get the hang of rowboat technology.
Chances of returning before the series' end: Low, about 25 percent. His story as a Baratheon bastard probably ran its course now that the royal line has mostly moved on and the focus is on the Lannister battle with the religious lunatics, the Targaryen claim to the crown, and the Starks' rebuilding. Maybe Dany (Emilia Clarke) will see him on the seas in his rowboat when/if she finally sails to Westeros.
Syrio Forel (Miltos Yerolemou)
Who he was: Arya's waterdancing teacher from Braavos was a huge influence on the young Stark child, giving Arya her first lessons in murdering, which would help her later kill children, grown men, and pedophiles alike. (Side note: Arya's a bit mad, isn't she?)
Where we last saw him: Syrio was about to engage in a fight with Meryn Trant (Ian Beattie) during the Lannisters' roundup of the Starks in Season 1, but we never saw the actual fight or what happened to the slick-talking swordsman. We know that Meryn Trant made it out alive — and was later fatally stabbed about a bazillion times by Arya — but that doesn't mean he killed Syrio. Game of Thrones isn't shy about showing death, so why didn't it show Syrio's demise if he did indeed die? Because he's alive!!! Right? Please tell me he's alive. Just as Syrio told Arya, what do we say to death? "Not today, you big jerk."
Chances of returning before the series' end: We'll say there's a chance and put it at 40 percent since Syrio was such a badass that he should have been easily able to defeat a walking tin can like Meryn. As for theories, like others have guessed, the Braavosi native Syrio could be one of the city's Faceless Men and can literally be anyone, such as Jaqen H'Ghar (Tom Wlaschiha).
Ellaria Sand (Indira Varma)
Who she was: Ellaria is the cunning paramour of Oberyn Martell (Pedro Pascal) and mother to four of his children, including the Sand Snake Tyene (Rosabell Laurenti Sellers). She's been plotting revenge against the Lannisters at all costs following Oberyn's death at the hands (and fingers) of The Mountain in Tyrion's trial by combat.
Where we last saw her: Okay, it hasn't been that long since we last saw Ellaria. But Game of Thrones has ignored her ever since she made the huge power play in Dorne to kill Prince Doran (Alexander Siddig) and possibly seize control of the Dornish army in the Season 6 premiere. So, Game of Thrones, once things got interesting in Dorne you decide to ignore it? And not when Tyene is senselessly flashing her ta-tas at Bronn (Jerome Flynn) in jail?
Chances of returning before the series' end: One million percent. There is no way her actions will go unrecognized. The question here is why the show has blatantly abandoned Dorne after spending so much disappointing time on it last season.
Who they were: Beric and Thoros are members of the renegade Brotherhood Without Banners, a band of men pledged to no house and pulled off capturing Arya, Gendry, and some other runaway squirts in Season 3. A recent convert to the Lord of Light, Beric has taken major advantage of his religion by allowing the priest Thoros to resurrect him several times. Including once when he was almost cleaved in half by The Hound.
Where we last them: In the Riverlands, when they sold Gendry to Melisandre for some gold. Arya soon ditched 'em and went off on her own (and was quickly captured by The Hound). But these two roguish charmers? Never heard from or seen again.
Chances of returning before the series' end: The possibility picked up steam this week when The Hound encountered members of the Brotherhood Without Banners. So we may see them soon... for about as long as it takes The Hound to chop off their heads. I hope Thoros has some more resurrection charges left!
Nymeria (some cute dog)
Who she was: Arya's direwolf!
Where we last saw her: After biting Joffrey (yes!), Cersei Lannister ordered Nymeria to be executed. Arya was like, "Eff that" and shooed Nymeria into the woods of the Riverlands to live life in the wild instead of on the end of a stick as another Lannister trophy. But the Lannisters are huge dicks, so they killed Sansa's direwolf, Lady, instead.
Chances of returning before the series' end: One can look at the way Game of Thrones has treated direwolves recently — something 2007 Michael Vick would have liked — and think that Nymeria may as well already be dead and will never show up again. But I think because of the recent deaths of the direwolves, Nymeria will find a way back into the show for a happy reunion with Arya, provided Arya survives the Waif's attack this week. And the sight of Nymeria licking Arya's face will be the greatest thing the show has ever gifted us.
Game of Thrones airs Sunday nights at 9/8c on HBO.