Winter returns to television in just a few short weeks, when “Game of Thrones” debuts its fourth season on April 6. Ahead of that return trip to Westeros, HBO has unveiled the titles for the new season’s first four episodes — and if you’re familiar with the George R.R. Martin-written novels that “Thrones” takes its cues from, then there’s plenty of information to chew on here.
So, like the men of the Night’s Watch, we’re sounding the horn not once (to signal the return of our brothers), not twice (to warn of an attack), and not even thrice (to prepare for the White-Walkers). We’re sounding the horn four times — which means, spoilers ahead.
Still here? We’re officially in spoiler mode, so proceed further at your own risk. Here are the four episode titles, and what we think they mean, based on our knowledge of GRRM’s books.
Episode 1: “Two Swords”
If you thought the Lannisters couldn’t tear the Starks down any further, you’re wrong. In “A Storm of Swords,” the third novel in the “A Song of Ice and Fire” series, Ned Stark’s Valyrian great sword Ice is broken down and turned into two new swords: one for King Joffrey, and one for Jaime Lannister. Joffrey names his Widow’s Wail, because of course he does. As for Jaime’s? We’ll get to that in a minute. For now, expect to see the destruction of Ice and the presentation of the new swords in the season four premiere.
Episode 2: “The Lion and the Rose”
The lion represents House Lannister, while the rose represents House Tyrell. The two houses are set to join this season, through the marriage of Joffrey and Margaery. Their wedding has been teased for numerous episodes now, and it looks like it’ll finally take place in episode two of the new season — which means the infamous “Purple Wedding” will happen very, very early.
Episode 3: “Breaker of Chains”
Expect a lot of Daenerys in this episode, as “breaker of chains” is just the latest of the Khaleesi’s many monikers. She earns the nickname thanks to her crusade through Essos, liberating the oppressed men, women and children of Slaver’s Bay, and upending an entire social system in the process.
Episode 4: “Oathkeeper”
Remember what we said about Jaime’s sword? The reformed bad boy of Westeros forks the thing over to Brienne of Tarth and commands her to name it Oathkeeper. He gives her another directive, too: Honor the late Catelyn Stark by going off in search of her missing children, using Ned Stark’s own sword to protect them. Touching, isn’t it?
What do you think of the first four “Game of Thrones” season four titles?