Which made us wonder – just who will live long enough to die in that final episode?
Game Of Thrones author George RR Martin has already given us some clues, in the first-ever pitch letter he sent out to publishers about the project.
“Five central characters will make it through all three volumes, however, growing from children to adults and changing the world and themselves in the process. In a sense, my trilogy is almost a generational saga, telling the life stories of these five characters, three men and two women.
“The five key players are Tyrion Lannister, Daenerys Targaryen, and three of the children of Winterfell, Arya, Bran, and the bastard Jon Snow.”
So, we can assume they’re all safe until the finale. But what about the rest? Glad you asked!
Cersei Lannister – Least likely to survive
Yeah, sorry Cersei fans (do you exist? If you do, who hurt you?), but there’s no chance your YAS QUEEN (of evil) is going to make it out of this show alive. She’s done too many terrible, terrible things, and it’s way too late for a redemption narrative that doesn’t involve death.
So, either she’ll be punished for the things she’s done, or she’ll be redeemed by a fatal sacrifice.
Either way, she’s doomed. The main question is, which episode will she go out in? We’d predict a surprisingly early death – potentially at the metal hand of her true love / own brother Jaime, who’ll fulfil a prophecy (too complicated to go into here), adding ‘Queenslayer’ to his CV.
Oh, Davos, we love you, but you’re in some serious trouble, buddy. Because, really, what’s he got left to do? Sure, he’s funny and all that, but now that Jon and Dany are going to be getting deeper into their love plot, there’s not much room for Davos’ narrative (which, tbh, felt wrapped up the moment Jon gasped back to life).
We’re going to be it’ll be an early death for Davos – he’ll sacrifice himself to save one of the Stark girls (potentially Arya) from the Night’s King, making up for the fact he couldn’t save Shireen Baratheon from a fiery end.
Varys has had a bit of a weird time of it on the show, with an infinitely more interesting plotline in the books. As such, he currently feels a bit surplus – especially now his intriguing rivalry with Littlefinger has been completely resolved (without his involvement).
Still, we’re a bit on the fence with Varys – his show plot is so vague he could either die in the first episode back, or be sitting on the Iron Throne in the final episode. But we’re leaning more towards the former than the latter.
Just like Davos, Theon will sacrifice himself to save a Stark – probably Sansa – as his arc definitely seems to be headed towards a redemption narrative, after going from the dangerously egotistical Theon to the cowardly Reek, who’s desperate to make up for past mistakes, but can’t find the courage to do it. He’ll have a heroic end, mark our words.
Jaime’s going to make it until the penultimate episode, then he’s a goner. As much as George RR Martin likes to subvert fantasy tropes, there’s no way that the dude who crippled a small child in the opening episode gets to survive to a happy ending.
In terms of how he goes out, we could see a Luke Skywalker/Darth Vader/Emperor scenario, where Jaime saves Tyrion from death by Cersei, receiving a fatal wound in the process. That sibling rivalry needs to be wrapped up before the series ends, and this seems like the most logical way to do it.
Whatever happens, Jaime will have a bittersweet ending, with his ambition to be written about in the White Book fulfilled, after his demise.
Brienne of Tarth
Now we’re starting to get into the realms of characters that’ll get picked off one by one in the final episode. George RR Martin didn’t list Brienne amongst the survivors in his original letter to the publishers, but she’d fit right in with the gang out outcasts and outsiders who manage to transcend her perceived shortcomings to become a true hero.
She’s a bit more interesting in the books, but she’ll still make it to the final episode of the show. Brienne will either go out honourably, fulfilling her duty to protect the Stark girls, or she’ll survive to become the new head of the Kingsguard. Either way, she’ll be there at the end.
Poor Sansa, the only Stark child not on George’s original survivor list – which feels a bit harsh, especially when you consider everything she’s been through. So, while Sansa will definitely make it to the final episode – she deserves that much – she probably won’t survive, as George would have included her on that fateful list if she was going to make it.
That said, George has changed his mind about a lot of stuff that was in that original document, so there’s potential that Sansa ends up on the Iron Throne. We can’t think of anyone we’d prefer, tbf.
Samwell Tarly – Most likely to survive
One of the last surviving fan theories is that Samwell won’t just make it to the final episode, he’ll end it – with the Game Of Thrones books being his own creation, as he transcribes everyone’s adventures so that future generations can enjoy them. Sam’s seen as George RR Martin’s stand-in on the show, Martin wouldn’t let himself be killed off, would he?
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