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First look at 'Game of Thrones' season seven, as George RR Martin teases death and darkness to come

Ellie Walker-Arnott

We all know 'Game of Thrones' is unlikely to end in a neat, feelgood kind of way. To quote Ramsay Bolton, 'if you think this has a happy ending, you haven't been paying attention'. 

But George RR Martin has confirmed that there are really bad things on the horizon for the remaining 'Thrones' characters. 

Speaking about upcoming novel 'Winds of Winter', the penultimate in his epic series and the basis for upcoming episodes, the author said: 'I’ve been telling you for 20 years that winter was coming. Winter is the time when things die, and cold and ice and darkness fill the world.' 

We know what you're thinking. If winter's 'the time when things die', what the hell has been happening for the last six seasons, which has seen pretty much everyone perish in terrible, gruesome ways?

'This is not going to be the happy feel-good that people may be hoping for,' continued Martin, adding: 'Some of the characters [are] in very dark places.'

'In any story, the classic structure is, "Things get worse before they get better", so things are getting worse for a lot of people.'

And those people? Well, if this recently released clip from HBO is anything to go by, the remaining Starks are set to take centre stage in the upcoming season. 

A preview of HBO's 2017 content gives viewers a quick (three seconds, superfans) glimpse of season seven, showcasing Jon Snow, Ayra riding horseback and a determined-looking Sansa striding through the snow. 

'Game of Thrones' will be back on Sky Atlantic in 2017. 

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