The One Thing To Know About Lady Stoneheart On 'Game Of Thrones'

Warning for Game of Thrones fans who like going into each season blind — I'm about to talk about a serious plot point in the series that might just play a big part in Season 6. OK, you ready? Let's begin. In the end of the third book in the A Song of Ice and Fire series, A Song of Swords, Catelyn Stark's dead body gets pulled out of the river by Beric Dondarrion, who gives her a life-giving smooch. In the next few books, she becomes the leader of The Brotherhood Without Banners, a ragtag crew of outlaws who hang Freys left and right. But just who, or what, is she? This zombie-fied woman is not exactly Catelyn Stark but a figure known as Lady Stoneheart, and while she hasn't appeared in Game of Thrones yet, this season could be her time to shine — because let's be real, it's time for the Starks to get some serious revenge.

At least in the books, Stoneheart is out for blood after the Red Wedding, and who can blame her? She watched members of her family suffer and die, and was told that the others were killed, as well. It'll be quite interesting if the character appears in Season 6 and goes after both the Freys and the Lannisters. But according to the Telegraph, the actor who played Catelyn, Michelle Fairley, isn't on contract this season. Still, there's a big reason to think that Lady Stoneheart might make an appearance anyway.

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Yes, Lady Stoneheart is technically Catelyn Stark, but that doesn't mean she has to be played by Fairley. In the books, the character's body has been floating in water for days before she is pulled out, so her skin color has changed. She has an open wound in her throat and because of this, her voice is gravelly and very different from the voice of the beloved Catelyn. Most of her hair is either gone or is on the edge of falling out. Because of these changes, Stoneheart could be played by any actor, really — in fact, it almost makes more sense to have someone else in the role other than Fairley because the character will be such a different person from Catelyn, whom fans knew and loved. Although Catelyn was tough, she was incredibly compassionate. Stoneheart, though has no kindness in her, so for reasons both physical and emotional, it might make sense that a different actor would take on the part.

The appearance of Lady Stoneheart will definitely move Game of Thrones' plot along. Sure, she might not see her children (Starks just can't ever be reunited on this show), but she will most definitely cause trauma left and right. This zombie-like Catelyn has a desire for one thing only, revenge, and so I can see her meeting with Brienne of Tarth to discuss getting just that. Brienne was loyal to Catelyn and still does whatever she wanted. But if Stoneheart asks Brienne to take out Jaime Lannister, will Brienne be able to do it? And if she doesn't, will this cold-hearted new Catelyn have her Brotherhood Without Banners destroy everyone's favorite lady knight?

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Even if this happens, I hope that Lady Stoneheart also has a meeting with Walder Frey and gets some vengeance for the murders of her family. And after that? Who knows — there are a lot of families who have messed with the Starks, and Lady Stoneheart could be going after them all.

So while it's still unclear if Stoneheart will definitely play a part, it's a real possibility — especially since Fairley doesn't need to be present for the character to be. I have faith that the leader of the The Brotherhood Without Banners will be around this season to cause all sorts of drama in Westeros.

Images: HBO, giphy (2)