'Game Of Thrones': Benjen Stark's Fate Is Revealed, Perhaps Olly And Allister Thorne Weren't Lying About His Sighting At Hardhome?

A character long thought dead made a return to Game of Thrones in Episode 6 (entitled "Blood Of My Blood"). But what does this return mean, and how did this person even survive?

SPOILER ALERT: This article contains information about HBO's Game of Thrones, in particular Episode 6 (entitled "Blood Of My Blood) of the sixth season. Please proceed with caution if you wish to avoid spoilers.

Benjen Stark (Joseph Mawle) was one of the reasons Jon Snow (Kit Harington) decided to join the Night's Watch way back in Season 1 of Game of Thrones. However, it didn't take long for this character to go over the Wall and be reported as missing when his horse returned to Castle Black minus Benjen. When his two travelling companions, Othor and Jafer Flowers, were discovered dead north of the Wall, the worst was then presumed.

But many fans predicted the return of Benjen Stark. After all, if a death is not seen, it is more than likely that character will make a return at some point in Game of Thrones. It may have taken five seasons, but Benjen finally returned, saving his nephew, Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright), from attacking wights in the process.

But What Happened To Benjen Stark?

HBO's Game of Thrones Season 6 Episode 6 Blood of my Blood Benjen's reveal
[Image via HBO]After Benjen rescued Bran and Meera (Ellie Kendrick) from the wights, he revealed his identity to them. Bran promptly asked how Benjen had survived his time north of the Wall. It turns out Benjen was attacked by White Walkers, and when he was stabbed in the belly by an ice spear, the White Walkers left him to die. Obviously, Benjen didn't die in Game of Thrones though. Instead, he was found by the Children of the Forest, and his life was spared when one of the Children pierced his heart with dragonglass -- just like we saw Leaf (Kae Alexander) do to create the very first white walker in the flashback scene in Episode 5 of Game of Thrones. This means now that Benjen can be considered one of the undead, like a White Walker, but he is still different from the ones we have seen so far in Game of Thrones.

Originally White Walkers were made by the Children of the Forest as a weapon against the First Men, who were cutting down the trees they worshiped. Over time, though, these White Walkers escaped the control of the Children of the Forest and became their own entities. The assumed leader, Night King (Vladimir Furdik), has the ability to turn children into White Walkers just by touching them. However, it is unclear if he can turn adults in the same way.

And What Does All This Mean?

With Benjen the way he is now -- not quite a wight and not even quite a White Walker--it is unclear just how it will affect the outcome of storylines in Game of Thrones. Vanity Fair does suggest Benjen would be a perfect candidate to help Jon Snow discover his true parentage. However, there is something else interesting to note. Benjen was made by the Children of the Forest, and when Bran was in danger, the Three-Eyed Raven (Max von Sydow) -- before he died -- sent a message to Benjen to help Bran. This means it is likely Benjen is more aligned with the humans than the White Walkers. It is possible he could have some sort of relationship with White Walkers, but after seeing him knock down the wights descending on Bran and Meera, this seems unlikely. But if Benjen were to reunite with Jon Snow and the Starks, perhaps he could be used effectively as a weapon of the North? Only by tuning into Game of Thrones will all be revealed.

Does This Mean That Perhaps Olly And Allister Thorne Weren't Lying To Jon Snow Before They Killed Him?

HBO's Game of Thrones Season 5 olly stabs Jon Snow
[Image via HBO]But, hang on a minute, if Benjen has been like this since Season 1 of Game of Thrones, is it possible Olly (Brenock O'Connor) and Allister Thorne (Owen Teale) weren't lying to Jon Snow when they said Benjen was seen at Hardhome? Sure it was a ploy to lure Jon Snow to his death, but perhaps there was an inkling of truth to this claim? After all, they told Jon Snow one of the wildlings had told them they had seen Benjen "on the last full moon" at Hardhome. Could Benjen have been living at Hardhome during his time away from Castle Black? And how will this make Jon Snow feel about killing Olly and Allister?

What did you think about Benjen's return to Game of Thrones? Let us know by commenting below!

Season 6 of Game of Thrones returns to HBO with Episode 7, entitled "The Broken Man" on Sunday, June 5, at 9 p.m. ET.

The official synopsis according to the Independent for Episode 7 is as follows.

"The High Sparrow (Jonathan Pryce) eyes another target. Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) confronts a hero. Arya (Maisie Williams) makes a plan. The North is reminded."
[Image via HBO]