Game of Thrones returns for its seventh season this weekend, and season six (like every season) was so dense that it’s worth refreshing our memories before tuning in. My friend Molly Templeton at did such a good refresher that I didn’t think I could improve on it– but I can certainly complement it with this list of highlights in GIF form!

1. OF COURSE Jon Snow (Kit Harington) isn’t dead! AS IF.

Was there any doubt in your mind between seasons five and six? He still had some bastards to battle and some North to king. 

2. Melisandre is OLD. (And nude.)

melisandre game of thrones old

Why she needed to be naked for us to get the point that without her necklace she’s super old is beyond me, but apparently someone thought putting Carice van Houten in a ton of body makeup sold the point better than just having her old head above a modest robe. Or GOT thrives on gratuitous nudity. Potayto / potahto, right?

3. Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) is fireproof! (And nude.)

Daenerys Targaryen

No Dosh Khaleen are going to stop her from conquering the world, and to drive the point home she burns them all to death and then recruits the Dothraki with her fireproof bosoms, I guess. 

4. Arya Stark (Maisie Williamssettles the score for the Red Wedding. 


Using the face magic she picked up at the House of Black and White, my favorite Stark fed Walder Frey (David Bradley) a horrible pie full of human toes, then slit his throat. This moment was slightly more satisfying for me than when she left the anonymous life her mentors were offering her and retrieved Needle from where she’d hidden it in the rocks. 

5. Tormienne is born. 

When Tormund Giantsbane (Kristofer Hivju) met Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie), the chemistry was palpable. And awesome. 

6. Jon Snow’s parentage is half revealed!

GOT Lyanna Stark

If you’re like me, you never bought that Ned Stark could have strayed from his marriage to produce the bastard Jon Snow. Now we know that he didn’t, and that Jon’s mother was Ned’s sister Lyanna. HBO has subtly confirmed his father was Rhaegar Targaryen, making him maybe the most entitled to the throne, but let’s see…

7. Cersei used the Mad King’s Wildfire. 

game of thrones wildfire

Don’t you get tired of the evil characters in fiction being all bark and no bite? “I’m tying you up under a swinging axe blade, but I’ll talk to you about my evil plan long enough for you to escape” kind of bark? Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey) blew that trope, and her enemies, to smithereens, with the collateral damage of her last surviving child stepping out of a window to his death afterwards. Children: zero; thrones: one.

8. Everyone’s coming to Westeros. 


Daenerys, Tyrion (Peter Dinklage), Varys (Conleth Hill) and DRAGONS are one their way from one direction as the White Walkers make their way from the north. Shiz is about to get REAL. 

9. Sansa is single again. 


In her most badass moment yet, Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner) ended her marriage to the awful, awful Ramsay Bolton (Iwan Rheon) by feeding him to his dogs. Here’s the GIF of her smiling as she walks away, because the GIF of him being eaten was GRAPHIC. 

Bonus Tweet: OK, ladies…

Lyanna Mormont (Bella Ramsey) won the season, and this was my favorite of the thousand memes she inspired / was featured in. 

OK! That’s my list. What are you shocked not to have seen included?

Leona Laurie