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'Game of Thrones': What new HBO photos reveal about the upcoming season

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(Read caption) 'Game of Thrones' stars Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (l.) and Lena Headey (r.).

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New photos from the HBO hit fantasy series “Game of Thrones” have fans buzzing prior to the new season’s debut in April. 

Network HBO recently posted various images showing characters in the new episodes.

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Jon Snow (Kit Harington) is not one of them. The character of Jon appeared to have been killed during the season finale of the fifth season. He appeared in an image HBO tweeted out promoting the release date of the new season, but he’s not seen in these photos. 

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Who is? Along with returning characters like knight Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), his sister, Cersei (Lena Headey), his brother, Tyrion (Peter Dinklage), and aspiring ruler Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke), the images also show some new characters such as the Three-Eyed Raven (portrayed by “The Exorcist” actor Max von Sydow) and ones we haven’t seen in some time such as Yara (Gemma Whelan), the daughter of the ruler of the Iron Islands. 

The sixth season of the show is set to debut on April 24. 

The prior episodes of “Thrones,” which has become HBO’s most-watched show of all time, won the acclaim of those behind the Emmy Awards, with “Thrones” becoming the first fantasy TV show to win the prestigious best drama series Emmy.

The past season, however, was perhaps the show’s most controversial, with many viewers and critics objecting in particular to an episode that included the rape of a young female character, Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner). 

Jeremy Podeswa, who directed the episode in which that took place, recently said that he believed the co-creators of the show, D.B. Weiss and David Benioff, had kept the criticism in mind when working on the new installments of the show. 

Weiss and Benioff “were responsive to the discussion and there were a couple of things that changed as a result," Podeswa said. "It is important that [the producers] not self-censor. The show depicts a brutal world where horrible things happen. They did not want to be too overly influenced by that [criticism] but they did absorb and take it in and it did influence them in a way.”


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