Like the harsh winter in Westeros, the seventh season of Game of Thrones is finally here. Luckily, fans had plenty of time to prepare thanks to no shortage of previews, trivia and brand partnerships as HBO anticipates its highest-viewed season to date.
The premium cable network is encouraging fans to share their excitement with friends through branded digital stickers across social media with the help of a sponsored hashtag (#GoTS7). A new Snapchat filter makes users’ eyes glow blue like deadly White Walkers from the show. The Game of Thrones cast shared season seven insights through Instagram stories on the official HBO account and the star-studded premiere was shared across Twitter using a special, snowy photo filter.
— Game Of Thrones (@GameOfThrones) July 13, 2017
Feast Like A King
Deliveroo UK opened a Game of Thrones-inspired pop-up bakery on July 17 called “You Know Nothing, Jon Dough.” Actor Ben Hawkey, who plays Hot Pie on the show, will serve real-life versions of his character’s “dire wolf bread.”
Meanwhile, Deliveroo Singapore teamed up with over 12 restaurants including Outback Steakhouse and The Hard Rock Cafe to create special-edition menu items inspired by the show. Examples of items on the“Feast for a King” menu include Theon Greyjoy Sausage Roll, Joffrey’s Wedding Slice, Dragon’s Breath, Little Finger’s Big Fingers and The Hound’s Chicken Dinner.
HBO isn’t the only brand using the season seven premiere to reach an engaged fan base. KFC UK and Ireland teamed up with Northern Irish actor Kristian Nairn, better known to fans as Hodor on Game of Thrones. The spot parodies a key scene in season six in which Hodor struggles against hordes of white walkers behind a door. Playing a cashier during the lunch rush, Nairn is bombarded with requests for chicken with fries. Overwhelmed, he turns his back to the mob and anxiously chants, “chicken with fries” until it morphs into “chicken with rice,” promoting the KFC Rice Box.
Even Coca-Cola got in on the fun on Twitter, running a promoted ad during the US premiere.
— Coca-Cola (@CocaCola) July 14, 2017
Say It With Style
If you’ve ever wanted to learn High Valyrian, get ready to command some dragons because language learning app Duolingo has launched a web-based High Valyrian language course. The course is taught by David J. Peterson—linguist and creator of Game of Thrones’ fictional language.
Soon you’ll be shouting such useful phrases at the laundromat as, “Skoriot ñuhyz zaldrīzesse ilzi?” (Where is my dragon?) and “Vīlībāzmosa iderennī emilun!” (I would like trial by combat!)
Ice, Ice, Baby
White Walkers play an important role in the new season, so it’s no wonder that HBO is using these iconic creatures to promote the show worldwide. In London, actors dressed as the Night King and four other White Walkers were spotted at Oxford Circus, Tower Bridge, The Tower of London and Buckingham Palace among others.
In Singapore, fans were given photo opportunities with a life-sized ice sculpture of the Iron Throne and chance to win limited edition prizes, which were frozen in blocks of ice.
Fans in Hong Kong who like the HBO Asia Facebook page or follow them on Instagram received a free, limited-edition Night King frozen yogurt from Yo Mama. The event runs from July 29 to 30 and is limited to 1,000 cups of frozen yogurt.
HBO Asia transformed Taiwanese ice dessert outlet Ice Monster into a Game of Thrones-themed pop-up for three weeks. Over 100 limited-edition Night King popsicles were given out to fans who uploaded a photo of the store’s White Walker on Facebook or Instagram, using the #GoTS7TW hashtag.
“It may be summer in the UK but after six seasons, winter has finally arrived in Westeros,” said Zai Bennett, director of programs for Sky Entertainment UK and Ireland, per The Hollywood Reporter.
In Rome, Sky Entertainment organized an actual marathon, or “marathrone,” to mirror its Game of Thrones TV marathon. Runners chased a giant truck screening the first six seasons of the hit show from Rome to Milan.
Season six broke all records for the show, averaging 23 million viewers per episode. With just two seasons to go, fans are more than ready to see who will sit on the Iron Throne.