We waited 595 days from the end of the Season 7 finale and the Season 8 premiere. Since then, D.B. Weiss and David Benioff have given us two episodes of reunions, reveals, and resolutions for several of our favorite ‘Game of Thrones’ characters. We may be saying goodbye to many of them in the Battle of Winterfell, so I thought it best to bring back the Power Rankings before we do.
In past years, this list has consisted of up to 75+ characters. Thanks to Cersei Lannister and an enormous collection of wildfire under King’s Landing, that’s no longer the case. For those new to GoT Power Rankings, characters are ranked by their prowess and value on the show, as opposed to likability…which you’ll find with our Top 2.
1. The Night King
Nearly every character you love on ‘Game of Thrones’ is teaming up in order to save humanity from The Night King. His army of the dead is 100,000 deep and sitting outside of Winterfell. He has a resurrected ice dragon that destroyed the Wall at East Watch, and has seemingly “recruited” everyone between there and Winterfell.
The new Stark/Targaryen/Semi-Lannister alliance seems to have their plan ready, but as we know with Thrones…nothing goes the way it’s planned (for the good guys, at least). There’s a running theory that the Night King could be using Winterfell as a decoy, as he and Viserion go to wreck King’s Landing. While we haven’t seen him, I have a hard time thinking he won’t use this opportunity to finally get Bran. Besides, he has a Crypt full of women and children to raise the dead around…
2. Cersei Lannister
Who’s the farthest away from the White Walker threat? Cersei.
Who sits on the Iron Throne, which Daenerys has fought her way back to Westeros for? Cersei.
Who now has an additional army of 20,000 sellswords, shipped from Euron Greyjoy’s fleet? Cersei…but she’s pretty pissed about not getting her elephants, so watch out.
3. Daenerys Targaryen
For the time being, the North begrudgingly bows to Daenerys. Even without them, she has “the greatest army the North has ever seen” consisting of Dothraki, Unsullied, TWO DRAGONS, and followers she’s picked up along the way. The dragons alone could take out most of the Wight army, but we know now that they aren’t invincible.
However, we’re starting to see Khaleesi’s poise unravel. She was unnerved by Sansa’s question about how the North will be treated after she takes the Throne. The idea of Jon having claim wasn’t a welcomed one either. While the focus is on beating the dead, does she really want to help the North if they could be a problem after?
4. Jon Snow (Aegon Targaryen)
Jon has always been a reluctant leader. He didn’t ask to be voted Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch, or to be named King in the North, but he has approached both for the greater good of all. It’s no surprise that he revealed his newly-discovered parentage to Daenerys, because he’s never been one to keep secrets. What they both choose to do with that information after the Battle, if they’re both alive, will be interesting.
His “father”, Ned, was an honorable man, but even he kept a secret from the world to protect what was important to him.
5. Bran Stark
As the Three-Eyed Raven, Bran may be the most powerful character in all of Game of Thrones…Being the Night King’s target certainly makes him the most important one, at least. Will Bran finally showcase the extent of what he can do in the Battle of Winterfell? Will he Warg into a Dragon? Channel the Night King?…Maybe become him? Who knows! Bran’s a Wild Card!
6. Sansa Stark
Sansa’s arc has been incredible, and that’s been on display in the first two episodes of the final season. She doesn’t hold back in front of Daenerys, and even trumped her in the trial of Jaime Lannister. The Northern Houses all seem to be leaning toward her, after Jon returned with an army of outsiders and gave up his crown. PLUS the Knights of the Vale are at her disposal, which proved to be the biggest x-factor in the Battle of the Bastards.
When all is said and done, Sansa is the best equipped to see over the North. Her question to Daenerys will need an answer though…Will the North remain free with her on the Throne?
Two of the biggest keys to defeating The Night King’s army will be Daenerys’ dragons, and Drogon has always been her #1. He’s always been the alpha to his siblings, and it will be interesting to see how he fares against Viserion.
Much like Drogon, Rhaegal is key to beating the White Walkers. Assuming Jon rides him in the battle, how comfortable will they be in the most important battle of their lives? If there is a living dragon that has to fall, it unfortunately may be him.
Qyburn has gone from mad scientist to HAND OF THE QUEEN. Like Cersei, he appears to be safe in King’s Landing and is already making some dramatic moves. I have a hard time believing that Cersei ordered for her brothers to be killed, considering family is what’s most important to her. Not really “on brand” for the Queen.
Not sending an army to support the North is one thing. But if Bronn kills either Jaime or Tyrion (or Brienne in an attempt for either), that could be what motivates the valonqar prophecy to come true…being that Cersei will be murdered by ‘the little brother.”
10. Arya Stark
One of the deadliest assassins in the Seven Kingdoms has finally found her humanity again, as Arya has reunited with the other Starks…and Gendry.
It’s unclear if anyone, outside of Sansa, actually knows how dangerous Arya is. You have to think she plans on wearing another character’s face within these final episodes, but not until after the Battle of Winterfell. It’s also unclear if her certain set of skills actually apply to fighting an undead army, but she’ll have the likes of The Hound, Brienne, and a lot of other badasses to back her.
11. Tyrion Lannister
Tyrion has taken A LOT of L’s over the past several episodes, with the biggest being that he trusted Cersei would actually send an army to fight the undead. However, he still garners as much respect as anyone at Winterfell. Both Sansa and Ser Jorah vouch for Daenerys’ Hand, convincing her to keep him on. And so he’s directed to the SAFEST PLACE IN WINTERFELL, The Crypts (sarcasm).
Daenerys herself values Tyrion’s mind for when she finally rules, and it may have become more valuable after a long conversation with Bran.
12. Ser Brienne of Tarth
Brienne will lead the left flank in the Battle of Winterfell, which is a huge honor (but may seal her fate). We also have seen how highly regarded she is held among many around her. In Jaime’s trial, Brienne stood up to Daenerys and vouched for the man who killed her father. Sansa would have agreed with Dany, as her parents were also killed by the Lannisters, but trusts Brienne with her life. Then Jaime knighted Brienne, on the eve of the most important battle their world has ever seen.
HE TOOK DOWN THE WALL…REALLY EASILY.
If the misdirection theory we discussed earlier comes true, Viserion could totally light up Euron’s fleets and lay waste to King’s Landing. Cool plot twist, but will he? I’m looking more forward to the dogfights in the sky between him and his dragon siblings.
14. Davos Seaworth
If there’s one character I’m rooting for most to survive the Battle of Winterfell, it’s Davos. Tyrion gave his credentials, having survived both Blackwater and Battle of the Bastards. While he didn’t win the the former of the two, he stood by his leader to the end afterwards and has served as Jon’s most trusted advisor after.
After seeing a girl in Winterfell that reminded him of Shireen Baratheon, many felt his story had been resolved. If Jon survives this battle, I hope that’s not the case.
15. Euron Greyjoy
Though he had his own medicine served to him, by Theon saving Yara, the whacked-out pirate, Euron, apparently has a lot of favor with Cersei. Even with the most powerful fleet in Westeros, Euron’s cockiness and ambition may get the best of him though with the evolving “Mad Queen”.
16. Grey Worm
This may have been the Kiss of Death for the General of the Unsullied, but a moment Grey Worm and Missandei needed. With their arrival to Winterfell, we were reminded of how unwelcoming the North really is (similar to how they treated the Free Folk). After talking about seeing the beaches again with Missandei, Grey Worm will likely be going down in a blaze of glory against the Wight army.
17. Jorah Mormont
By wielding the sword of Samwell Tarley’s family, Ser Jorah regains the honor that he lost many years ago. Having Heartsbane also gives him a chance to defeat White Walkers in the upcoming battle. Unfortunately it feels like The Andal’s arc has reached its end, as he revealed to Dany how heartbroken he was to not be her Hand but also supported Tyrion.
After missing him in all of Season 7, GHOST IS BACK! NOW PROTECT THIS DIREWOLF AT ALL COSTS!
19. Samwell Tarly
It’s been an emotional roller coaster for Samwell, through 2 episodes. He found out his brother and father were executed by his new queen, had to break the news to his best friend that he was sleeping with aunt and has the claim to the throne, then had to decide whether to fight the undead army or stay with his family IN THE SAFEST PLACE IN WINTERFELL (it’s not).
If someone is going to tell this story after though, many feel it’s going to be Samwell Tarly.
20. Yohn Royce
His Knights of the Vale were the winning ingredient to the Battle of the Bastards, proving to be the North’s best weapon outside of Daenerys’. What kind of impact will they have, equipped with dragon glass weapons.
21. Beric Dondarrion
Beric has been brought back to life several times with the purpose to fight this battle. He will likely be using his last life, but we wonder how the “Lord of Light” will work its magic through him one last time.
22. Tormund Giantsbane
After giving us the most ridiculous origin story ever, most as a last shot at Brienne, the Battle of Winterfell may be Tormund’s last. This will be the 3rd time he’s fought the dead though, which could be the charm (he types with wishful thinking).
23. Jaime Lannister
A lot of signs point to this being the end for Jaime. His evolution from the person who pushed Bran (Episode 1) out of a tower to apologizing for it (S8 E2) may be the most fascinating arc in the entire series. Being one-handed and having to fight an undead army doesn’t seem like the formula for success, but there’s a prophecy that still needs to be fulfilled…Killing Cersei.
We also don’t know what Bronn is going to do when he gets to Winterfell. Will he be the one that kills Jaime, or motivates him to seek revenge after?
24. Lyanna Mormont
After dunking hard on Jon Snow for abandoning his role as ‘King in the North’, Lyanna goes to battle with his soldiers alongside her cousin Jorah. The odds aren’t particularly in her favor, but it’s powerful to see her do so.
Dude just provided the entire ARMY OF THE LIVING with weapons. And noway Arya wants to let him die, not now at least.
And now for the best of the rest…
26. The Hound
30. The Mountain
31. Harry Strickland
32. Theon Greyjoy
33. Edd Tollett
35. Tycho Nestoris
36. Yara Greyjoy
37. Podrick Payne
38. Jaqen H’ghar
41. Daario Naharis
42. Meera Reed
43. Salladhor Saan
44. Melessa Tarly
45. Talla Tarley
46. Hot Pie
47. Baby Sam
49. Robin Arryn
50. Aeron Greyjoy
51. Edmure Tully
52. Ellaria Sand
53. Septa Unella
54. Tyene Sand
This list will be dramatically shorter after Episode 3 of Season 8. Let’s discuss on Twitter after!