Though he was AWOL for the entire seven episode run in season 7, those in a position to know what the hell they're talking about have confirmed that Jon Snow's direwolf, Ghost, will be on-screen again when Game of Thrones returns for its eighth and final season in 2019.
"Oh, you'll see him again. He has a fair amount of screen time in season eight," said the show's visual effects supervisor Joe Bauer to the Huffington Post. "He's very present and does some pretty cool things in season eight."
Seems tough to misinterpret that.
Bauer also revealed to Huffington that the lack of direwolves in season seven may be a result of real-life wolves being kind of tough to teach acting to. "The direwolves are tough because you don’t want to get them wrong," he said. "So we end up always shooting real wolves and doing a scaling trick with them, but the real wolves only behave in certain ways."
Bauer added: "I think that has something to do with why the direwolves are in the show but they’re not maybe as integral as they are in the books."
That nugget/tease represents a (minor) departure for the series, who have gone to great lengths to keep their secrets secret prior to the final batch of episodes. Despite the lack of concrete details, those involved with the show are doing their best to titillate viewers with vague but promising updates.
"The final season's taking a long time because it's the biggest thing we've ever done," said series co-creator David Benioff at the Emmys two weeks ago. "It was nearly a full year in Belfast either prepping it or actually shooting it. I think when people see it they're going to understand why it took so long. The last season is far beyond what we've ever attempted before."
Can't disappoint now.