Game Of Thrones Showrunners Explain Why They Left Out One Of The Books’ Most Exciting Characters

Game of Thrones delivered its most significant, iconic shock toward the end of its third season back in 2013 when Robb Stark, his mother Catelyn, and his wife Talisa were killed by a rival family at an event that came to be known in-fiction as the “Red Wedding.” It rocked fans who read the original scene in the 2000 novel A Storm of Swords–fans who then looked forward to show-only people’s minds being blown once the scene finally aired. And with some minor tweaks, Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss mostly succeeded in translating the gut-wrenching event to television.

One major change related to the show’s version of the Red Wedding only became evident long afterward, as it grew more and more clear that one iconic character would not be adapted from the source material to the screen. In the novels, you see, Catelyn Stark doesn’t stay dead. Like other characters in the series, she’s resurrected by Red Magic–think priests of R’hllor like Melisandre and Beric Dondarrion’s friend Thoros. (If this is all starting to sound like nonsensical trivia, don’t worry, we’re getting to a point.)

In the books, fire zombie Catelyn–also known as Lady Stoneheart–goes on a tear through the Riverlands lynching any and all “enemies” (as she very loosely defines them) and perpetrators of the Red Wedding, including any members of the rival Frey family she can get her hands on. She hasn’t appeared much in the currently published books, but fans hope she’ll play a more prominent role in future material. In a series where justice is so rarely served, some readers find it cathartic to have an undead agent of pure vengeance floating around on the fringes. So it was extremely disappointing to a lot of people when the show ultimately chose to leave Lady Stoneheart in the realm of the written word.

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Author: Michael Rougeau