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Game of Thrones Finale: Will Lady Stoneheart Appear?

All hope is not lost

Sadie Gennis

Although many Game of Thronesfans have lost faith in Lady Stoneheart, all hope is not lost.

For those who haven't read George R.R. Martin's novels, Lady Stoneheart is the mantle Catelyn Stark (Michelle Fairley) takes on after Beric Dondarrion (Richard Dormer) sacrifices his own life to resurrect hers. Lady Stoneheart then becomes the de facto leader of the Brotherhood Without Banners, whom she uses to get vengeance against those even loosely tied to the Red Wedding.

Although in the show Beric Dondarrion is most definitely alive and still leading the Brotherhood, it's still possible that Lady Stoneheart will appear -- just not in the way book readers will expect.

All season long, showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have laid the groundwork for Stoneheart's appearance by including near-constant references to Catelyn and re-introducing characters closely associated with her, including the Brotherhood and Walder Frey (David Bradley), who would be one of her primary targets. This twist with Beric being alive might simply be a genius ploy to throw book readers off the scent so that when Stoneheart appears we can all be genuinely shocked together.

This would not only be a smart move by producers, who have been fielding complains about predictability all season, but it would also fall in line with something Sophie Turner said ahead of the Season 6 premiere. The actress seriously stoked the Stoneheart fires when she played Two Truths and a Lie with Yahoo! in April, during which she teased: Ramsay (Iwan Rheon) dies, Lady Stoneheart returns and Arya (Maisie Williams) checks three people off her list.

We know Ramsay is dead, which means either Lady Stoneheart returns or Arya makes it to Westeros and manages to kill three people in a single episode. Of the people remaining on Arya's kill list, the only three who are in the same location are the Hound (Rory McCann), Beric and Thoros (Paul Kaye). But would Game of Thrones really bring back the Hound only to kill him almost immediately? Maybe! But we seriously doubt it.

And the more doubts we have about Arya checking three people off her list in the finale, the more likely it is that Turner was telling the truth about Stoneheart's appearance. But that's not the only reason we're holding out hope for Lady Stoneheart.

For a deep-dive into the evidence both for and against Stoneheart's return, check out the video above.

Game of Thrones' finale airs Sunday at 9/8c on HBO.