Each week, we give every episode at least 24 hours to breathe and for you to get caught up. After that, you’re clicking at your own risk. Spoilers ahead.
Don’t lie. Hearing the Game of Thrones theme raised your blood pressure a little bit and you were pumped for the next 2 months of action.
The season premiere picked up where Season 5 left off. We got some closure on Jon Snow. Big things are coming for Sansa. Dorne belongs to the Sand. The Lannisters vs. The World. Meereen has smoke on the water. Daenerys goes back to basics. Arya’s got some work to do. Melisandre is, well, you know the Danny Glover quote…
In just one episode, there was a ton of shakeup from the Pre-Season Thrones Rankings. As more of our favorite characters enter the fold, I imagine that will continue next week. For now, though…here are your S6 Week 1 Rankings.
1. Sansa Stark
I’m not sure if there’s a character who has suffered as much as Sansa has over the course of the series. She watched her father get beheaded, endured the Joffrey thing, survived a marriage to Ramsay (you know what happened), then after loads and loads of disappointment, she got a HUGE win. Wins don’t come easy on this show.
As it was mentioned in Season 5, then reinforced by Roose Bolton in his convo with Ramsay, the North is prepared to unite for Sansa. They NEVER FORGET and now that she’s out of the Bolton’s grasp, it may be time for her to build her legion. Having the heir to the Greyjoys and Brienne by her side doesn’t hurt either.
2. Brienne of Tarth
Piggybacking on Sansa’s momentum, Brienne waited for 2 seasons to fulfill her promise to Catelyn Stark. She got her revenge on Stannis and clearly has some serious adrenaline leftover to take out 3 more of Ramsay’s men. I’m very high on the possibilities for Sansa’s potential Northern army and Brienne is like her “Daryl Dixon” (for the Walking Dead fans) ready for battle.
3. Tyrion Lannister
With Daenerys absent, Meereen is now Tyrion’s responsibility and he’s walking about much more comfortably than he should. He’s the best man for the job though, having the most experience running a kingdom as the King’s Hand back in King’s Landing. While politics, knowledge and drinking are his thing, he’s currently playing #TrueDetectiveSeason3 with his “partner in crime” Varys trying to find the traitor in Daenerys’s camp.
4. Ser Davos Seaworth
Davos is the coolest, right? I love his speech to those loyal to Jon, telling them he’d been pushed around by jerks like Alliser all his life. He’s savvy enough to know that Alliser’s deal is bullshit and has quickly devised a strategy to call upon the Wildling army before nightfall. Davos has also put aside his personal differences with Melisandre, knowing she could be both Jon and his best chance within Castle Black.
Who else is pumped for this “Butch & Sundance” style showdown with the Night’s Watch?
5. Night’s King
I’ll just refer to the “Hardhome” episode again. Remember that?
I have maintained a belief that Varys is the puppet master to what’s going on in his storyline. There’s no way Jorah finding Tyrion was a coincidence and neither was Varys finding his way to Meereen to join Daenerys’s council. I like the idea that the entire series is just a battle between he and “Little Finger” for rule of Westeros.
I also love his line to Tyrion, “I used to steal from people like you when I was a boy.”
7. Jaime Lannister
Jaime comes back to King’s Landing ready to take back everything those around he and his sister have stolen from them. I don’t think we’ve seen Jaime this sure of himself, even when we were first introduced to the arrogant version of him. “Fuck the prophecy”, he tells Cersei. Being in command of the King’s guard and helping bring his sister back up, you know he’s going to get his bloody revenge…and the Sparrows are in their sights first.
8. Theon Greyjoy
The #TheonRedemptionTour is full speed ahead right now. Throwing Ramsay’s stalker girl over the wall, escaping with Sansa, and finally lifting a sword to protect her/save Podrick is a clear sign we’ve got Theon back…instead of Reek. The high ranking also has a lot to do with the potential power moves Sansa will continue to make. Hopefully the Iron Islands will accept him again and have his back.
9. Ellaria Sand
Besides Sansa’s big win, Ellaria made the biggest power move by killing Doran Martell and all his guards letting it happen. She said, “a weak man will never rule Dorne.” This was her Jurassic Park “Woman inherits the Earth” moment as her daughters took care of Doran’s heir as well, obviously giving them the immediate power. With her wish for revenge on the Lannisters and Dorne’s history with the Targaryens, I think she will be key in assisting Daenerys in her eventual raid toward Westeros.
10. Jon Snow
Jon is dead. I know. But for a dead guy, he seems to be needing A LOT of protection from those loyal to him and Davos, who has said himself that he didn’t even know him well. Those in Castle Black know damn well that you burn the dead right away too, and nobody even made that effort. With Melisandre in camp too, you can keep his story alive for the series.
Even as important and powerful as Melisandre is, her importance (at least to us) depends solely on what she can do for Jon, Davos and those aligned with them. Her reveal at the end of the episode, while graphic, gave legitimacy to her self-proclaimed credentials having lived through several battles and kingdoms. By all means, though, put on some clothes and bring Jon back from the dead already.
12. Daenerys Stormborn
While she doesn’t have control over her current situation, Daenerys held her own very well with this new Dothraki tribe. She stayed quiet while her captors talked down to her so she could survey her surroundings. Then as the Khal began threatening her, she broke her silence and instantly gained their respect.
She’s heading to Vaes Dothrak, which seems like a shitty situation, but you get the feeling Daenerys is going to rebuild her forces with those around her. When she’s surrounded by so many people like this, I’m reminded of the season finale that ended with the shot thousands worshipping her. She has a knack for drawing support.
13. Cersei Lannister
Bare with me here, but Cersei is like a WWE pro wrestler. She does so much for so long to make you hate her, but can somehow make you root for her in an instant. It took some suffering at the hands of the Sparrows, but also some self-awareness as she mourned the loss of Myrcella. She says herself that her daughter was purely good and without the mean and wickedness that she possessed. So now I’m rooting for her to unleash Zombie Mountain on the Sparrows and regain what is hers.
14. Khal Moro
New character on the show, but obviously powerful. Despite promising his protection for Daenerys, he does control her fate. You have to sorta respect that he did so after going full “he-man, woman owner” on her. It’s an alliance though that could be key for Daenerys down the road.
15. Zombie Mountain
Mountain. Smash…You’ll see.
16. High Sparrow
I’ll be honest, I can’t stand the greasy self-aggrandizing of the High Sparrow but facts are facts. He has the current Queen of King’s Landing held captive, as well as Ser Loras, and has totally shown up King Tommen…although that doesn’t seem too difficult.
17. Tyene Sand
Tyene is by far the most interesting of the Sand Snakes. We saw her take full power over Bronn while they were both jailed and she just took down Areo Hotah, a character that I thought had Michael Clark Duncan type importance to the story. That dagger throw taking down the runaway Martell loyalist was pretty damn impressive too. As of now, she and her sisters are basically princesses in Dorne. We’ll see where things go for them now.
18. Eddison Tollett
The “Crows” left in the room with Jon aren’t particularly excited that their fates are in the hands of ol’ Ed here, but he did take care of business from atop the wall during the battle with the Wildlings when Jon left him in charge. Now he’s tasked with rallying the Wildlings for his friends’ rescue. Having been there during Hardhome, I trust he can do some convincing.
19. Tormund Giantsbane
As important as Ed is for getting the Wildlings, it’s going to be Tormund’s call as to whether they will help him. Something tells me it won’t take too much convincing for him to get another shot at killing Crows.
20. Ser Alliser Thorne
Alliser is a weird situation. If anything, he represents the conservative politics that go into guarding the wall. Where Jon wants everyone to get along, Alliser remembers all the times Wildlings killed his people in the past and sees no reason to assist them. However, we’ve seen the point-of-view from Mance, where they fought the Night’s Watch out of necessity and for survival. You have to respect his honesty and not hiding that he did to Jon and he knows that it was treason. He’s reached a point of no return though and you’re more than allowed to wish for bad things to happen to him because of it.
21. Podrick Payne
Podrick never ceases to amaze. He held his own very well in the skirmish with the Bolton soldiers. These being the same that defeated Stannis’s army and slaughtered Rob Starks men. Yet there was Pod, taking one down from his horse and going toe-to-toe with another in a sword fight. He still needed Theon’s help to survive, but Podrick is on Sansa’s side now with an arrow pointing up…big time.
22. Petyr Baelish
We haven’t seen Petyr Baelish in a while but we do know he has something in the works. Maybe he knew Sansa would escape, maybe he didn’t. What we do know is that he has bet most of his chips on the North rallying behind her specifically. It’s going to be interesting to see what happens when they meet again. What Varys is to Tyrion and Daenerys, Little Finger is to the North…King’s Landing just happens to be stuck in the middle.
23. Kevan Lannister
As the Hand of the King, Kevan Lannister should be getting some input very soon as Tommen likely wants his wife back from the Sparrows. He’s also in charge of probably the most powerful army in the Seven Kingdoms. This seems to be a decent spot for a guy who has only appeared on the show twice but has that much power.
24. Nymeria Sand
Tyene’s sisters just toyed with Tristain, who didn’t stand a chance against them. At least Nymeria was willing to take him on face-to-face…
25. Obara Sand
Kind of a stupid move to have his back facing Obara, but Tristain had the spear through the “back of the head and out his face” coming. “Greedy bitch” move, by her though…as her sister stated.
26. Queen Margaery
We’ve never seen Margaery this low before. She’s played the game, just about as well as Cersei had. A little weird that two of her three husbands were basically children, but you gotta to what you gotta do to be queen. She inspires revenge from Tommen though, and one would expect the King’s guard to be making a move for her soon. She also seems to be holding her own well, despite the circumstances.
27. Tommen Baratheon
This poor kid. Hard to expect he’s going to last long but at least he’s not Joffrey. Regardless, he is the king…and it’s good to be the king.
28. Ser Jorah Marmont
Among the two searching for Daenerys, Jorah is the most motivated. He’s doing it for love and he’s got nothing to lose besides her. When things get rocky, you’ve seen him handle his own with a sword too. I don’t doubt he’ll be seeing Daenerys again before the greyscale gets him.
29. Daario Naharis
One of the most capable of the warriors on the show, but I don’t necessarily trust him. If we’re going to play process of elimination for those who could have betrayed Daenerys in Meereen, the arrow points to Daario. If we learned anything from Scream, you can’t trust the boyfriend. Daario is also a mercenary and motivated by money. The Masters could’ve easily payed him beyond his wildest dreams to strategize with the Sons of the Harpy. Who’s to say some of those masked men aren’t his either. He might not be in Meereen, but his on Daenerys’s scent and could get close enough to finish what he started.
30. Jaqen H’ghar
I have no idea what the extent of his powers are or what he actually is, but the dude made Arya go blind and he’s a master of disguise. Interested to see more of what he’s capable of.
31. The Three-Eyed Raven
We know the Three-Eyed Raven is powerful but we’re still not sure how or what he can do. He’s got Bran under his tutelage and has a whole year to work with him, so I’m anticipating serious Max Von Sydow magic soon.
32. Bran Stark
Just like with his mentor, Bran’s been out of action for over a year. He’s going to be older and wiser, and hopefully more powerful.
33. Queen of Thorns
I think we’re all in agreement that the former Bond girl had a lot to do with Joffrey’s death. What I’m interested in now is what she’s going to do to get her children out of the High Temple and will she team up with the Lannisters to do it.
34. Roose Bolton
He’s the Warden of the North, for now, and very aware of his current situation. The Bolton’s have broken ties with the Lannisters over Sansa and don’t have the support they need without her. Roose also seems to know how to handle Ramsay at this point too, pushing his buttons for motivation…You wonder if that may backfire eventually, because Ramsay is crazy.
35. Ramsay Snow
I know it’s not great seeing Ramsay any higher than last, but he did just lead an army to handily destroy Stannis’s. We’re reminded of his cruelty and disgusting nature though, as he ordered that the corpse of the ONE woman to love him be fed to his dogs.
36. Wun-Wun The Giant
I want nothing more than for this best to rip Olly in half when he comes to Castle Black.
You wonder if Bronn is going to assist Jaime as he aims for revenge on EVERYONE. Why not? Bronn seems to like fighting with Lannisters, as long as they pay up.
If we’re ruling out betrayers to Daenerys in Meereen, I think you can remove Missandei from the list. Can’t really think of a reasons he’d have beef with her boss. She does have some power over Greyworm though, who’s in charge of his own arm…so there’s that.
Raise your hand if you were super relieved Ghost was okay at the start of the episode! Yeah, me too. He gets first ranking of the beasts on this show considering he has absolute loyalty toward Jon and will do anything to protect him. I would also be okay with him ripping Olly to shreds.
Is Drogon okay? There wasn’t much clarity on his status after dropping off Daenerys. He’s a bit of a loose canon, literally, but obviously the most aggressive of the dragons…and also not in chains.
When he’s done feeling sorry for himself, Greyworm can move back up the list.
Waif is sorta playing sensei right now while taking some pleasure in beating the crap out of Arya. She also seems to know everything Arya is going through, so I give her the edge and the benefit of the doubt in this situation.
44. Arya Stark
This will be the lowest we see Arya, I assume. The sooner she also stops feeling sorry for herself, the better.
45. Samwell Tarley
Sam’s ranked low only because of his inactivity at the start of the episode. Very interested to see how his storyline goes and what he’ll do when he hears about Jon.
Gilly rules. Inactivity has her low, just like Sam, so I expect her to make her way up the list eventually.
47. Meera Reed
I’m not sure what’s going to motivate Meera now that her brother is dead. Jojen saw something in Bran, and maybe she’ll dedicate herself to seeing that through with the Three-Eyed Raven.
48. Rickon Stark
Hey! Remember him! Still alive, I think. Wonder what he’s up to…Just about all the Starks should have arrows pointing up at this point, so we shall see.
Her status is clearly tied to Rickon. With a territory allotted to Wildlings though, maybe she and Rickon took refuge there.
50. Rhaegal & Viserion
These poor dragons aren’t much good when chained up. You wonder if Tyrion will set them free as they seem to have connection for finding their mother.
51. Septa Unella
Let’s take bets on who will kill Septa when the Temple falls: Cersei or Margaery?
Maybe they’ll bond over it.
52. Ser Loras Tyrell
…I don’t feel too good about Ser Loras, unfortunately.
53. Lancel Lannister
Zombie Mountain’s coming for ya, Lancel.
The Sparrows don’t seem too keen on people of his ilk. Despite selling out Loras, I don’t get the impression they spared Olyvar either.
55. Mace Tyrell
So. Damn. Worthless.
All I want is for someone to brutally massacre that smug look off this kid’s face.