Compared to earlier seasons, Game of Thrones (opens in new tab) season 6 is moving forward at a much faster pace. As we head toward the series' eventual conclusion, currently on track for the end of season 8 (opens in new tab), the pieces are finally slotting into place for what's bound to be an epic finale.
One of the biggest surprises came in last week's episode when Yara and Theon arrived in Meereen to pledge their support for Daenerys. Actress Gemma Whelan, who plays Yara Greyjoy, seems equally as excited as the rest of us.
"It's game on now, isn't it?" she tells THR (opens in new tab). "I hope it goes somewhere. I hope I'm not killed off immediately. The rise to glory was long, but short-lived. Wouldn't that be disappointing? (Laughs.) But she's in the game now, with her brother. They're back together, with an allegiance reformed between the two of them. It's good... She likes the cut of Daenerys' jib, and I think the feeling is mutual. Yara's quite excited and thrilled about meeting a kindred spirit in Dany."
Having a sizeable army at her disposal, it's no surprise that the Mother of Dragons would be courted by various figures hoping to merge battle strategies. Yara's devious uncle plotted to do just that, and lure Daenerys into his bed. With Yara and Daenerys now having formed an alliance we're delving into new territory: two women joining forces in potentially more ways than one. When asked about the subtle flirtation between the two, Whelan says that also came as a surprise: "I didn't expect that. But it's in the script!"
"The Internet exploded," she adds. "My twitter was quite full of this "shipping," which I had never heard of before. I've certainly been educated now. Everyone's been very nice about it. I was so thrilled to see that in the script and be able to play it quietly together. It was lovely."
Romance or no, it's still an exciting development for a show that's typically paired Dany with men to help her take the Iron Throne. While Yara and Dany don't feature together in any of the images from the coming episode (opens in new tab), season-closer "The Winds of Winter", here's hoping they share at least a moment of screentime.
The final episode of Game of Thrones season 6 airs this Sunday on HBO in the US, and Sky Atlantic on Monday in the UK.