Game of Thrones has the tendency to bring out amateur sleuths, who use a potent combo of research and meticulous scrutinization of every frame in search of clues. And with Reddit serving as a fertile breeding ground, each passing episode spawns another round of wild fan theories. The latest one to gain traction online centers around Lady Stoneheart, the undead version of Catelyn Stark who’s yet to appear on the show despite playing a major role in George R. R. Martin’s books.
During the sparring scene that occurred between Arya and Brienne in “The Spoils of War,” some eagle-eyed viewers noticed a shadowy cloaked figure lurking in the background. Reddit was abuzz with claims that the apparition was the first sighting of Lady Stark’s ghostly incarnation, and that she was there to check up on a certain someone.
“If you watch the sparring scene in S07E04 between Arya and Brienne, when Arya asks ‘Didn’t you vow to serve both my MOTHER’s daughters?’ – at the word MOTHER you can see a woman in a long green dress with long auburn wavy hair with her head down walking past the background gate, resembling Cat,” Reddit user Grenns Gal wrote in a post. “If it’s unintentional, it’s awesome. If not, more awesome. Catelyn checking on Brienne keeping her vows.”
And while the figure certainly has red hair, it’s unlikely that showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss intended it to represent Mama Stark. We know this because George R.R. Martin has said that he was disappointed by their decision to omit the Lady Stoneheart narrative from their adaptation.
“At some points, when David and Dan and I had discussions about what way we should go in, I would always favour sticking with the books, while they would favor making changes,” Martin said in an interview earlier this year. “I think one of the biggest ones would probably be when they made the decision not to bring Catelyn Stark back as Lady Stoneheart. That was probably the first major diversion of the show from the books and, you know, I argued against that, and David and Dan made that decision.”
Fans of the books were also miffed by Weiss and Benioff’s decision to axe Lady Stoneheart, which probably explains why they’re so eager to conjure her from thin air or, in this case, from a red-headed extra.