In series one to three of 'Game of Thrones', episode nine has seen a catastrophic event befall one or more of the characters. All three seasons felt like they had been building up to the penultimate episode, whereupon all narrative hell broke loose.
Well the good news today is that in series four it seems we can expect shocks of that scale every couple of episodes, according to one star of the fantasy drama.
Shocks like the execution of Ned Stark, the Battle of Blackwater, and the bloody Red Wedding all saw a major character meet their end. With plot twists like this every couple of episodes, will there be any characters left at the end of the series?
"The first three seasons, there was always a huge build-up for whatever's going to happen in episode nine," John Bradley, who plays Samwell Tarly, told Radio Times. "You know when you get to episode eight, it's all about to go off big time.
"But in terms of season four, at least every couple of episodes there is an occasion or a set piece that would rival the magnitude of anything you would get in episode nine. There are at least five or six 'episode nines' in season four!"
Sounds exhausting. Bradley says the upcoming series will be pivotal, and will tie up a lot of loose ends from series one.
"A lot of things are resolved in this season," he said. "A lot of characters' stories that have been planted as a seed in season one are really blossoming and coming to an end."
Series four of 'Game of Thrones' starts on April 7th on Sky Atlantic. Sky customers can now watch series one to three on demand.