HBO’s massively successful fantasy series Game of Thrones has announced the final season will premier next April. Despite all of the death over the past seven seasons, a lot of people are still alive. The 25 characters listed will vary from heroes, villains, and the morally questionable, one thing they have in common is that they are some of the best the series has to offer.
No, dragons do not count, but they are in my heart just so you know.
Since I am talking about Game of Thrones, be aware of spoilers of that did not occur to you.
#25: Hot Pie
How could I not put the friendly baker on here? I am not some kind of monster, plus his pies look delicious.
#24: Podrick Dayne
Sweet Podrick does his best as he has been beside Brienne of Tarth for a while at this point. For someone so sweet and getting pushed down, he has two major surprises in his story so far. One, he manages to stay alive despite being a horrible fighter. Second, he got that orgy with those prostitutes for free. What is his secret? The biggest mystery of the series will never be solved.
#23: Night King
A character with little development will remain lower on my list, especially one that has never uttered a word. The Night King is the show’s main threat who has an undead army and ice dragon by his side. Plenty more needs to be discovered to see his full potential because this mysterious being has enough power to wipe out everyone.
#22: Daario Naharis
One of the many strong men who stand by Daenerys’ side. A loyal companion who has some of the best kills in the series.
He also manages to be one of the many characters to be recast. One of the few significant issues the show faces.
#21: Eddison Tollett
Finding friends in the Night’s Watch can be hard, especially in the early seasons for Jon Snow. Eddison has one of the best hearts of the men who serve the Night’s Watch. A trusty friend who stood by Jon’s side through thick and thin.
#20: Lyanna Mormont
One of the few characters to have little screen time and manage to be a fan favorite. Lyanna might be young, but her ferocious dialog shows that nobody should mess with this powerful girl.
Another positive to the character comes from her cousin, Jorah Mormont, one of my favorite characters who will pop up later on in the ranking.
#19: Euron Greyjoy
A smug, charismatic, and most of all annoying villain, but I cannot dislike Euron. A great newer addition for the antagonist side of the show along with developing Theon and Yara’s character arcs.
#18: Yara Greyjoy
The amount of great female characters in Game of Thrones feels overwhelming to list. Yara has done so much as a standalone character and to the tragic story that follows her younger brother Theon. A tough, fun character who stands out strong against so many incredible personalities.
#17: Grey Worm
A seemingly simplistic Unsullied commander for the Mother of Dragons becomes so much more. Due to his horrific past, he is a broken man who feels as if he is just meant to kill and die. The love story between him and Missandei feels organic and worthy. Too many shows push romance unnecessarily, but not here.
Once he defended Tyrion and now fights next to Jamie. Bronn might not have had the most exciting story arc; that does not stop him from being a charismatic fighter who is enjoyable to watch as he kills or speaks with other characters.
While Little Finger was a snake, Varys matches him in sneaky behavior. One of the most morally questionable characters of the series, he keeps himself alive with diplomacy, working behind the scenes, and knowing the right cards to play at the right time. A brilliant man who after all this time, I have no idea what he is looking to get out of all the drama going around Westeros.
#14: Jaqen H’ghar
The assumed identity of one of the men behind the Faceless Men remains to be an overall mystery. While nobody is certain whether we will see the assassin again, his arc was a methodical, intriguing narrative full of closed doors and death.
#13: Davos Seaworth
Davos has had quite the adventure. Few characters are further away from where they started then him. Danger lurks around every corner, and I am hoping Davos can survive through all of the armies, undead, and dragons.
#12: Samwell Tarly
While I am not a fan of his current narrative, Sam has a lot of potential in the final season. The show loves its slow-moving stories that make you question the purpose. By the end of most arcs, the “ah-ha” moment comes with a payoff that satisfies. I can only hope because Sam continues to bring joy with his kind heart.
#11: Theon Greyjoy
If you asked me a few seasons back then, Theon would have been lower on the list. Due to his current story, I have regained my faith in him. Once a loveable friend of the Starks, turning into a backstabbing fiend, to his brutal relationship with Ramsay, and now he faces a Euron who will make or break Theon’s redemption.
#10: Cersei Lannister
I love to hate Cersei. One of TV’s most heartless, horrible villains makes for the best threat to the more favorable personalities. The question everyone is thinking, will she win or die? If she dies, please let her be killed by either Jamie, Tyrion, or in a blaze of glory by a dragon. Drogon must be hungry.
#9: Tormund Giantsbane
A significant member of the Free Folk, Tormund balances killing machine and a ball of levity in one of the darkest TV shows in history. His crush on Brienne of Tarth might be one of the best bits in the series. The little winks and nods as Brienne look away in disgust brings the kind of humor needed right before depressing scenes where fan favorites are raped, tortured, or killed.
#8: Arya Stark
Arya’s narrative can be tedious. The Faceless Men story pains me to think about due to its pacing. The payoff ended up being worth it because Arya transformed into one of the most ruthless assassins fans have seen. Her killing Little Finger will go down as one of the best scenes in the entire series.
If rumors end up true that Maisie Williams portrays Ellie in the Last of Us movie then I will be happy with the potential trainwreck of another video game adaption.
#7: Brienne of Tarth
While plenty of men can hold their own in battle, not many of them stand up against Brienne of Tarth. Her stature will make her enemies tremble. An honorable woman who has looked after the Stark girls the best that she can despite some troubling circumstances. You know she means business if she won a fight with the mighty Hound.
Her relationship with Jamie Lannister is a unique dynamic that I cannot wait to see further develop in the final season. Two great warriors who are now on the same side. Even when they were against each other, there was a mutual respect that shined through the conflict.
#6: Jon Snow
Unlike most people, I used to not like Jon Snow. He grew on me around the time of his death and resurrection. As he has become as a leader and warrior, I have gained an appreciation for him. His narrative during season seven was some of the best in the series, and I am rooting for him during the final few episodes.
#5: Jorah Mormont
Despite the falling out between him and Daenerys, he has always fought for her. She pushed him out, and he did what he can to redeem himself to be her loyal companion. The world of Westeros is full of selfish people who will lie, steal, and kill their way to the top. Jorah stands out in this hateful world as a man who has a strong moral compass.
On top of his kind soul, Jorah’s kill count rises continuously and will not stop until he dies. If a battle between the fiercest swordsmen and women were to happen, I might bet on Jorah.
#4: Sandor Clegan/The Hound
A mean-spirited man who will kill anyone who looked at him wrong. A one-note character turned into one of the most complex personalities in the series. Also, he has one of the best lines spoken in the series, “Fuck the king’s guard, fuck the city, fuck the king.”
#3: Jamie Lannister
A once vile man turning away from his evil, manipulative sister to fight on the right side of history. Jamie was wrapped around Cersei’s finger for so long, I wondered if he will ever break free. He has had plenty of ups and downs, but not is the time for Jamie to rise up. Will the King Slayer become the Queen Slayer? One can only hope.
#2: Daenerys Targaryen
Being forced into a marriage with a barbaric man then raped and brutalized. Daenerys has become a seemingly unstoppable force. People told stories in the first few seasons of a girl with dragons. People dismissed those stories, and now they could potentially have her as their queen. Daenerys has a lot to face before the throne, but with her track record, the crown could be obtainable.
#1: Tyrion Lannister
Universally the most beloved character in the books and TV show is Tyrion. A brilliant mind with a great sense of humor will get you a long way with the audience. Comedic relief along with a compelling story makes the joker into a person who is irresistible. Tyrion deserves a happy ending after so much suffering. Knowing Game of Thrones, that will not happen.
Header image via HBO