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Game of Thrones season 5 premiere date set for April 12

Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) found his life at a crossroads at the end of season four of Game of Thrones.
Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) found his life at a crossroads at the end of season four of Game of Thrones.
Emily St. James was a senior correspondent for Vox, covering American identities. Before she joined Vox in 2014, she was the first TV editor of the A.V. Club.

The fifth season of Game of Thrones will premiere on Sunday, April 12, at 9 p.m. Eastern, HBO announced today at the Television Critics Association winter press tour. The show ended its last season with the characters even more scattered to the winds than usual, so it will be interesting to see how season five draws them back together.

Ostensibly, the fifth season will adapt material from A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons, the fourth and fifth books in George R.R. Martin's Song of Ice and Fire series. However, many storylines from those books — most notably that of Bran Stark, who's traveling North in search of the source of his mystical dreams — have already been depicted in the series. (Indeed, it seems Bran is sitting season five out.)

What we expect to happen

As the show has gone on, it has deviated more and more significantly from Martin's texts, so it's impossible to say with any certainty just what will happen in season five. But we have high hopes for the story of Arya Stark, in particular, as she leaves behind Westeros and travels after her destiny across the Narrow Sea. If her story stays true to the books, she should be training for a very interesting career change soon.

In terms of stories that are deviating from the books, we're interested to see what happens with Arya's older sister, Sansa, who is slowly but surely becoming a master manipulator, with the help of her new, creepy mentor figure Littlefinger. And set photos — which we won't repost here but will link to — suggest big changes for Jaime and Tyrion Lannister.

The show has only grown in popularity with every year. Last season, it officially became HBO's most successful show ever. And with the April release date, we won't have to wait long to find out what happens next.

Veep and Silicon Valley premiere dates

Both the political comedy Veep and the tech world comedy Silicon Valley will also return with Game of Thrones on April 12. They will air at 10 p.m. Eastern and 10:30 p.m. Eastern, respectively.

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