With less than two weeks to go before Game of Thrones returns to the airwaves, fans are frantically rewatching to remind themselves what happened over the last 67 episodes. Not because they've forgotten the story, but to remember all the side characters, the bit parts, and the minor details that will suddenly become very important in these last few episodes. For instance, does anyone remember the Brotherhood with Banners? How about Beric? Who is Beric Dondarrion? He could turn out to be super important for the final battle.
Beric has been around since the first season, in a minor scene where Ned Stark sends him out with a small group of soldiers to arrest The Mountain, aka Ser Gregor Clegane, who has been raping and pillaging lawlessly in the Riverlands under the Lannister banner. However, he didn't make an impression until Season 3 as the leader of the Brotherhood, when the part was recast with actor Richard Dormer.
Fans meet him again when the Brotherhood captures Arya and Gendry. There were rumors Beric died in Season 1, which at first seem untrue until he battles The Hound with his flaming magic sword. He loses and dies. Thoros The Red Priest then resurrects him. Beric says R'hllor, the Lord of the Light, keeps bringing him back. However, his resurrections have consequences, as he loses a little of himself each time.
Arya abandons the group after they give Gendry to Melisandre, and Beric disappears from the narrative until Season 6. While tracking down the murders of his adopted people, The Hound finds the surviving members of the Brotherhood. Beric says they are heading North to the Wall, as his connection with the Lord of the Light is warning him of the Night King's arrival, and invites the Hound to join them.
The Wall is where Jon Snow finds them in Season 7, in the dungeons at Eastwatch. After some initial distrust, Snow takes the group with him on his quest to capture a wight.
As two men who were both resurrected by servants of R'hllor, Beric and Jon bond, though Beric seems the wiser of the two in the ways of the Red God. He tells Jon the Lord of the Light brought them both back to fight in the battle on the side of life. They must face the Night King. Sadly, Thoros does not survive the trip north, leaving Beric unable to be revived should he die again.
As Season 7 ends, Beric's survival is in doubt, as he and Tormund happen to be at the top of the Wall when the Night King arrives on dragonback to put a hole in it. The last fans see of Beric, he is racing to escape Eastwatch, as the fort collapses around him.
The Season 8 trailer has revealed Beric's survival. He will make it to Castle Black and perhaps Winterfell in time for the major battle against the Night King. Fans won't find out how or if his presence will turn the tide until Game of Thrones returns on April 14, on HBO.