Believe it or not, there’s just 34 days left to go until the second season premiere of HBO’s Game of Thrones. And as that date approaches, the teasers and trailers have been getting ever so slightly more revealing. The latest ditches the dramatic narration of the last two, so we get more dialogue this time around — and, consequently, a better idea of the struggles the characters will be facing in the upcoming season. Watch the video after the jump. (Spoilers for Season One follow, obviously.)

It’s not quite as elegant as some of the previous videos, but it is helpful to get a more concrete sense of what the second season will be about. The first season ended with the Seven Kingdoms in political disarray, thanks to the deaths of Robert Baratheon and Ned Stark and the ascension of Joffrey Baratheon (Jack Gleeson) to the Iron Throne, and things apparently haven’t improved much since then.

Teams Baratheon, Stark, Lannister, and Targaryen are fighting between (and, in the case of Baratheon, within) themselves for power, as the predicaments of our central characters go from bad to worse. Damnit, Robb. You should really know better than to think “I love her” is a reasonable justification for anything in this brutal universe you live in.

Based on the second book of George R.R. Martin‘s A Song of Ice and Fire series, A Clash of Kings, Season 2 of Game of Thrones will kick off Sunday, April 1 at 9:00 PM on HBO. In the meantime, might I suggest reviewing Season 1 when the DVD/Blu-ray set hits shelves March 6?

Synopsis:

The Seven Kingdoms have come apart. Joffrey, Queen Cersei’s sadistic son, ascends the Iron Throne following the death of Robert Baratheon, the Usurper, who won it in battle. Queen Cersei’s family, the Lannisters, fight to hold it for him. Both the dour Stannis and the charismatic Renly Baratheon, Robert’s brothers, also seek the throne. Robb Stark, declared King in the North, battles to avenge his father’s execution and retrieve his sister from Joffrey’s court. Daenerys, the exiled last heir of the former ruling family, nurtures three dragons and seeks a way home. Meanwhile the Night’s Watch, sworn to protect the realm from dangers north of the Wall, dwindle in numbers, even as barbarian forces gather and beings out of legend stalk the Haunted Forest.

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