There are just a matter of hours to go until the hugely-anticipated seventh season of HBO fantasy series 'Game of Thrones' gets officially underway. With just seven episodes this season, as opposed to the 10 episodes that have made up each of the six seasons that have come before, the appetite for big scenes, action and drama has never been bigger. It's fair to say fans are foaming at the mouth.

Gwendoline Christie is proud of 'Game of Thrones' femalesGwendoline Christie is proud of 'Game of Thrones' females

One thing that has remained a constant throughout the series is the presence of powerful women, some of whom act within morality, with others willing to do whatever it takes to maintain their status. The overriding theme here is that they are more than capable of standing amongst the men of the show and sometimes, even go above and beyond what their male counterparts can achieve.

This is something that Gwendoline Christie - who plays Brienne of Tarth in the series - has picked up on during her time with 'GoT'.

"This was a television show that would put women at the forefront. We were going to explore female characters in a way that conventionally doesn't happen," the actress said while chatting on the PEOPLE/Entertainment Weekly Network.

She continued: "They wouldn't simply exist as the mother role, the girlfriend role, the wife role, or the sister. They would be people in their own right. I think putting women to the fore is what has changed the platform for television now."

It's fair to say that women are getting bigger and better roles than ever before, but Hollywood and the like still have a fair way to go before women enjoy true equality on both the small and the big screen.

'GoT' has paved the way for many to follow, but is still just a stepping stone to achieving that equality. Christie should however be proud of her work in the show. As Brienne of Tarth, she's proven to be a worthy adversary for a slew of combative opponents and is widely renowned as the best swordsman or swordswoman in the realm.

Long may the reign of women in television continue.

More: Emilia Clarke Says She Gets "A Lot Of Cr**" For 'Game of Thrones' Nude Scenes

'Game of Thrones' makes its return tonight (July 16) in the US on HBO and tomorrow (July 17) in the UK on Sky Atlantic and NOW TV.