Just one day after the new Game of Thrones Season 7 trailer was released, Entertainment Weekly has unveiled five new covers for this week's print edition, one of which finally reunites the surviving members of the Stark family, who haven't been in the same place since the first season. The first cover features Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner), Arya Stark (Maisie Williams), Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright) and Jon Snow (Kit Harington) together again at last, with four more covers each featuring the individual characters. If that wasn't enough, we have even more photos from this Stark reunion on the set, along with new details from showrunners David Benioff and David Weiss.
Entertainment Weekly debuted these new covers and candid photos with all of the Stark actors on the set, which comes just days after the site unveiled new photos, featuring our first look at one of Daenerys Targaryen's dragons, which has grown quite massive. Even before the trailer arrived yesterday, it was no secret that this season will mark the beginning of what has come to be known as The Great War, with the Season 6 finale showing Daenerys' (Emilia Clarke) fleet heading towards Westeros, while Jon Snow was named the new King in the North, after he and Sansa Stark took back their homeland of Winterfell, and Arya returned to Westeros as well, after spending the last two seasons across the Narrow Sea in Braavos. Co-executive producer Bryan Cogman reveals that Daenerys finally setting foot on Westeros soil is a game-changer for the show.
"Dany in Westeros makes Game of Thrones a new show. It has this amazing ripple effect throughout every storyline that's very exciting to explore. There's a pace and urgency that's very palpable. This is the end game."
The new trailer teased that Cersei Lannister, the new Queen of Westeros, plans on wiping out all of her enemies in every direction, adding that she and her brother Jamie (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) will wipe out all who oppose her. There are many others, though, like Davos Seaworth (Liam Cunningham) teased in the trailer, that realize there is a much greater enemy than anyone in Westeros, the Night's King, who will most likely be sending his army of undead to breach The Wall this season. The stakes will be greater than ever for the characters this season, but David Benioff teased that, just like every season, his cast and crew were up for the challenge, making this their best season yet.
""I know you probably get sick of hearing us say this, we say it every year, but everybody steps up their game this season. It's kind of astounding to us. In every department, from the acting to the effects, everybody constantly improves."
None of the producers would confirm whether or not the Stark family reunion from these photos will actually happen on the show, but it certainly seems likely. Arya has been on the run since the end of the first season, and her surprise appearance in the Season 6 finale, where she killed the man responsible for the Red Wedding, Walder Frey (David Braldey), marked her first time back in Westeros since the Season 4 finale, where she left The Hound (Rory McCann) for dead, and set sail for Braavos. We also saw that Bran Stark was lead to The Wall by his long-lost relative Benjen Stark (Joseph Mawle), which could mean that he could be let into Westeros by the Night's Watch, and perhaps eventually make his way to Winterfell, with the help of Meera (Ellie Kendrick). While this specific reunion wasn't confirmed, D.B. Weiss did tease that this season will feature some interesting interactions.
"What's most exciting this season is being able to play interactions between various characters that for years we haven't been able to play."
Game of Thrones Season 7 debuts Sunday July 16 at 9 PM ET, kicking off a seven-episode penultimate season of the hit fantasy series. The show will return sometime next year for the eighth and final season, which has been confirmed to be six episodes long. Take a look at the new EW covers and photos from Game of Thrones below.