Where Is Ghost on Game of Thrones?

This post contains spoilers for Game of Thrones Season 8, episode 2, “A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms” (check out our review here).

Update: It turns out we didn’t have to wait long for Ghost to return to the fold. Jon’s faithful direwolf can be seen sitting quietly in the background while Jon and Sam discuss battle strategy and catch up in “A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms.”

Apparently actor John Bradley was wrong when he said he didn’t have any scenes with Ghost this season, though it’s entirely possible the wolf was added in post-production and Bradley didn’t realize Ghost was supposed to be in that scene. Hopefully Ghost will have a more substantial role in the following episode as he joins in the massive Battle of Winterfell.

The original story is below:

The Game of Thrones Season 8 premiere featured many long-awaited reunions, and a few instances of major characters meeting for the first time. But one character was conspicuous by their absence – Jon Snow’s faithful direwolf Ghost – who is, thankfully, still alive despite being missing from the show since Season 6. While it seems as if Jon’s forgotten his four-legged friend, Ghost has remained safe at home in Winterfell while his master has been traveling back and forth across Westeros.

Ghost’s prolonged absence has many fans wondering whether he’ll finally make a return appearance in Season 8. Thankfully, he might show up in time to defend Winterfell from the White Walkers.

That’s according to The Huffington Post, which interviewed VFX supervisor Joe Bauer last year. “Oh, you’ll see him again. He has a fair amount of screen time in Season 8,” Bauer told HuffPost. “He’s very present and does some pretty cool things in Season 8.”

He also pointed out that including the direwolves can be tricky, as it requires a complicated mix of CG effects and footage of real wolves (who aren’t exactly the easiest animals to train), which is also why Ghost was missing from other pivotal episodes like The Battle of the Bastards.

Season 7 almost had one brief Jon/Ghost scene. As pointed out by WinterIsComing.net, the commentary track on the Season 7 DVD set features a reference to a deleted scene. Writer Brian Cogman explains, “There was a bit here where Jon came out of the crypt, and Ghost came up to him and he petted him and said, ‘Take care of [Sansa], watch over her for me.’ But I guess those direwolves are expensive. I guess it got cut.”

Actor John Bradley echoed that sentiment recently when IGN asked him if his character Samwell would have any scenes with Ghost in Season 8. “I don’t think I have any interactions with Ghost this year,” said Bradley. “That’s not to say that other people don’t, but they’re expensive, those CGI wolves, so they’ve gotta be used sparingly.”

Hopefully we’ll see Ghost joining in during the epic Battle of Winterfell, a conflict said to be “the longest consecutive battle sequence ever committed to film.” What’s one more direwolf at that point?

For more on Game of Thrones’ new season, learn why Bran’s battle plan may be significant, read about the hidden meaning of Podrick’s song about Jenny of Oldstones, and find out what Maisie Williams thought about Arya and Gendry’s big scene.

Don’t forget to check out our guide on where and how to stream Game of Thrones season 8, so you don’t miss a single episode.

Jesse is a mild-mannered writer for IGN. Allow him to lend a machete to your intellectual thicket by following @jschedeen on Twitter, or Kicksplode on MyIGN.

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