You may know actor Ian McShane from his incredible work on the tragically short-lived Deadwood, but the British thespian will soon make his mark on another critically-adored HBO series with an undisclosed role on the sixth season of Game of Thrones.
Unfortunately, the bulk of McShane's previous TV experience took place in the days before Internet sleuths would eagerly pick apart an actor's every word in search of spoilers, so he's not terribly adept at keeping a freakin' lid on it:
HBO is so concerned about keeping information from Thrones Season 6 from going public that they're refusing to send the customary pre-season screeners to critics for fear of leaks.
But the insane level of secrecy hasn't kept ol' Al Swearengen up there from spilling the beans in a number of different interviews, so read no further if you want to be surprised by the goings-on in Westeros next month. Spoilers are coming:
“I can give you like one hint," McShane says in the clip above, mistakenly thinking that he's being cagey.
"My character is like an ex-warrior who’s become a peacenik. So I have this group, a peaceful, sort of like a cult, peaceful tribe, who have brought back — I bring back a much loved character everybody’s thinking is dead. So, I’ll leave it at that."
Now, the obvious conclusion to draw here is that McShane's character brings Jon Snow back to life, because let's face it - Jon Snow is coming back to life one way or another.
But comments that McShane made in a different interview (yes, the dude's already dropped spoilers in multiple different interviews), suggest that might not be the case:
"I have nursed a loved character - a much loved character - back to life," McShane said, yet again not being nearly as subtle as he thinks he is.
"And it reintroduces - I won’t say him or her - cause he…it’s a character that’s much loved, that everybody thinks has died, and he’s not dead. Me and my band of peace-loving brothers and sisters have nursed him back to life. So it introduces him again.”
The interviewer then points out that McShane is obviously talking about either "the Hound or Jon Snow," to which McShane (who at this point is letting cats out of bags like the dimwit in some sort of spy comedy) replies:
“I’ll leave you with that one. I think you might guess which one it is…cause it’s not the latter. It might be the former."
So there you have it.
You may recall that while Arya Stark left Sandor Clegane for dead in the Season 4 finale, but we never actually saw him die.
Add to that the fact that actor Rory McCann was recently spotted staying at a hotel that's frequented by GoT cast and crew during the filming, and it seems pretty obvious that Season 6 will feature the return of the Hound.
If all of this has reminded you of how much you've forgotten (there's a lot to remember, after all), you can watch Game of Thrones online at TV Fanatic to get back up to speed in time for the show's April 24 return.