As the Game of Thrones characters prepare to face off against the Night King and his Army of the Dead, Winterfell has been getting pretty crowded. But while the Season 8 premiere brought about several much-anticipated reunions, one certain red-haired woman with an affinity for fire was nowhere to be found. If that left you wondering whether or not Melisandre will return in Game of Thrones Season 8, fear not. There’s very little doubt that the Red Woman will make her way back to Westeros before the series is over — as she herself foretold.
Melisandre was last seen on Game of Thrones at Dragonstone back in Episode 3 of Season 7. She was watching Jon Snow making his way to the castle to meet Daenerys for the first time, though Varys thought it odd that she didn’t want to go and greet Jon himself. Of course, he had no idea that the Red Woman didn’t leave the King in the North on good terms last time they spoke. In fact, he told her that if she ever stepped foot in the North again that she’d be killed after learning that he’d burned Stannis Baratheon’s daughter on a pike, all in the name of the Lord of Light. So Melisandre knew better than to make her presence known to him, which was fine with her. She’d done what she came to do: successfully unite fire and ice.
Since then, the Red Woman has been completely MIA on the show. Before she took off, she informed Varys that she was returning to Volantis, which is located in Essos. She didn’t intend to stay there forever, though. As she told the Spider prior to their departure, "I have to die in this strange country, just like you." Many may take that as an indicator that both Varys and Melisandre won’t make it out of this season alive. Either way, it seems she still has more work to do for the Lord of Light before that happens. But in true Game of Thrones fashion, it’s difficult to say when exactly that will be.
If you go to the IMDb page of Carice van Houten, who plays Melisandre, it shows that the last Game of Thrones episode she was in took place in 2017, but she has yet to be credited in anything from Season 8. Given that the cast and crew are keeping as many details as possible about the show’s final season under wraps, it’s not surprising that this information isn’t available. But don’t worry — that doesn’t mean Houten won’t be appearing in the coming weeks.
Perhaps she will only return to Westeros to die. Maybe it’ll even be in the process of saving someone else we care about. (It certainly won’t make up for what she did to poor Shireen, but it would be a start at least.) But if the Lord of Light commands it, then so it shall be done — for the night is dark and full of terrors.
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