Winter is Coming refers to a popular image macro series, depicting Ned Stark from the TV adaptation of A Song of Ice and Fire: Game of Thrones.
Online, the image macro is used with the snowclone captions “Brace yourselves, winter is coming” referring to a dreaded and awaited event.
A popular derivative of the original meme is Action is Coming.
A Game of Thrones, the first book of the fantasy epic A Song of Ice and Fire was published in the United States on August 1st, 1996.
In the book, the phrase “Winter is Coming” was frequently featured as the motto of one of the central dynasties of the plot, House Stark.
In 2011, prior to the premiere of the series’ HBO adaptation, “Winter is Coming” was featured in numerous marketing products, including trailers and wallpapers, and the pilot episode was first aired on April 17th, 2011, under the title “Winter is Coming”.
The first image macro meme of the quote was posted on Quickmeme in July 2011, paired with a photo of an owl, however its popularity started to rise after “Winter is Coming” was featured on image macro memes, depicting Ned Stark (portrayed by Sean Bean, known from the One Does Not Simply Walk into Mordor meme).
The following months and even years saw a steady stream of widely popular “Winter is Coming” memes online, all throughout the 2010’s.
Image macros appeared on all sorts of sites, ranging from Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to Reddit, 4chan and even 9GAG, iFunny or me.me.
- The-take.com – When Exactly is Winter Coming in “Game of Thrones”? What Does That Even Mean?
- Fandom.com – Winter Is Coming
- Wikipedia.org – Winter Is Coming