12:15 pm EDT, December 16, 2013

First teaser for ‘Game of Thrones’ season 4 packs a punch

The first teaser trailer for Game of Thrones season 4 was released last night, and though brief, it offers a powerful glimpse at exciting things to come.

Though the premiere of Game of Thrones season 4 is still several months away, hungry fans were treated to a taste of what the season has to offer in HBO’s “End of Year” promo video.

The tantalizingly brief teaser displays the first official footage from Game of Thrones season 4. Though a mere eight seconds long, the teaser does include several exciting shots of familiar characters and forthcoming epic moments. Check out our analysis below, after you have re-played the clip a few times.

The first shot of the trailer is a figure with a spear, galloping toward a stone wall on a white horse. Shot from behind, the figure’s only identifying trait is the yellow cloth wrapped around his (or her) head; could this be our first glimpse of Pedro Pascal as fan-favorite Oberyn Martell? Or is this a figure part of Daenerys’ story in Game of Thrones season 4? Let the speculation begin!

Related: Game of Thrones to return to a bloody location (photos).

The next shots have been converted to GIF form by enterprising fans, and offer somewhat more by way of analysis. The emphatic underdog Tyrion Lannister walks through a seemingly-hostile crowd in the Red Keep’s throne room, his hands apparently manacled together…

Tyrion GOT4

The clip of Tyrion is followed by everybody’s least favorite king ever, Joffery, looking characteristically sour at an outdoor event. Maybe he’ll kill someone to lift his spirits.

Joffery GOT4

Next is the briefest shot of Jaime Lannister, looking up as he turns the pages of a very important book in a very important tower. Though Jaime’s story line has been pulled forward from it’s trajectory in the Song of Ice and Fire series, it’s exciting to see Ser Jaime in place to play out what we anticipate to will be a very powerful scene.

Jaime GOT4

(Extra points if you noticed the golden hand dangling from Jaime’s right sleeve.)

Finally, the trailer ends on a beautiful shot of Sansa Stark, looking unusually hopeful.

Sansa GOT4

It’s also worth noting that Sansa’s hair and clothing are markedly different from her usual elaborate appearance in King’s Landing. Will Lady Sansa, long a prisoner in the stronghold of Lannister power, be on the move in Game of Thrones season 4?

Though the teaser did omit many of our favorite (and least favorite) characters from its brief attentions, it’s great to see the world of Game of Thrones in action again. Hopefully, this teaser will soon be followed by more new footage, sooner rather than later!

The official premiere date for Game of Thrones season 4 has not yet been announced, but the show will return to HBO in Spring 2014.

What is your favorite piece of new footage from ‘Game of Thrones’ season 4?

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