If your Ford had a Matthew McConaughey, it would be a Lincoln

GoTlopnik – Who Won the Game of Thrones?

Now that Game of Thrones is over, I thought it would be fun to review all the main characters and compare where they were when we first saw them to where they wound up after last Sunday night’s finale and see who actually won the game. As Cersei famously said to Ned Stark in the first season, “When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die.”

For those who have yet to watch the finale, spoilers below. Characters called out in no particular order:

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Ned Stark – In the beginning, he’s Lord of Winterfell and Warden of the North, the largest of the seven kingdoms. He doesn’t last too long as he gets beheaded by King Joffrey for treason.
Status: Dead

Catelyn Stark – Wife of Ned, mother of Robb, Sansa, Arya, Bran and Rickon. She engages in lots of foolish behavior to try and protect her kiddos before getting killed at the Red Wedding. About the only worthwhile thing she did was enlisting Brienne.
Status: Dead

Robb Stark – Son of Ned and Catelyn. After Ned’s beheading, the Young Wolf seeks revenge and has the entire North behind him. Gains many victories and even old Tywin Lannister is impressed. Decides to reneg on a betrothal and gets killed at the Red Wedding as a result by Walder Frey’s men.
Status: Dead

Sansa Stark – Daughter of Ned and Catelyn. Was betrothed to Joffrey and suffered as a result. Married to Tyrion Lannister and Ramsay Bolton, the latter of whom was a monster that beat and raped her. She escaped with the help of Theon Greyjoy and Brienne of Tarth, ultimately becoming the ruler of an independent North.
Status: Queen of the North

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Arya Stark – Daughter of Ned and Catelyn. Fled Kings Landing when Ned was beheaded and ended up as cupbearer to Tywin Lannister. With the help of Jaqen H’ghar she escaped and fled to Braavos, where she trained to become an assassin for the Many Faced God. Decided that was lame, she returned to Westeros and used her badassery to kill the Night King.
Status: Alive

Rickon Stark – Son of Ned and Catelyn. Almost forgot about this kid because people usually do. Was captured by Ramsay and executed at the onset of the Battle of the Bastards.
Status: Dead

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Bran Stark – Son of Ned and Catelyn. Was pushed out of a tower by Jaime Lannister after peeping on him and Cersei doing the incest. Ended up paralyzed, and fled Winterfell after Theon turned into a bitch. Went North and became the Three Eyed Raven, which made him stare a lot. Said he didn’t want to be Lord of Winterfell. Said he didn’t “want” anymore. Unless it’s to be king, apparently.
Status: King of the Six Kingdoms

Jon Snow aka Aegon Targaryen – Son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark. Was raised as Ned’s bastard and decided to take the black and hang out at the Wall. After Lord Commander Mormont died, he was voted Lord Commander of the Nights Watch and promptly opened the gates to the wildlings, one of which he decided to bang on the show and then marry in real life. As a result, he was murdered by his own men, then brought back to life by the Red Lady. Decided to come up with a terrible battle plan in Battle of the Bastards, but survived thanks to a last minute assist from the Knights of the Vale. Was named King in the North and promptly peaced out to Dragonstone to try and ally with Daenerys Targaryen and mine their dragonglass. Convinced Dany to help him and the living out and fight the Army of the Dead. Had sex with his Aunt. Rode a dragon. Helped auntie lay siege to Kings Landing then decided to kill her after she decided she preferred everybody extra crispy. Left to rejoin the “Nights Watch” and is now living among the Wildlings and finally gave Ghost a long overdue scratch.
Status: Alive and maybe King Beyond the Wall

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Theon Greyjoy – Ward of Ned and Catelyn. After Ned dies, he decides to go full Greyjoy and heads home to Pyke. Wants to have sexy time with his sister before realizing she’s his sister. His dad thinks he’s lame, but sends him to take Winterfell which was super easy because Bran and Rickon were in charge. Loses Winterfell, becomes a prisoner of the Boltons and Ramsay’s plaything. Gets a new name, Reek, and ends up a castrated servant to Ramsay. Spurns Yara when she tries to save him, but ultimately pretends he still has balls and helps Sansa escape. Supports Yara as queen of the Iron Islands, but Uncle Euron has other ideas. Aligns with Daenerys and helps defend Winterfell against the Army of the Dead. Killed by the Night King.
Status: Dead

Yara Greyjoy – Theon’s sister and heir to the Iron Islands. Tries to save Theon from Ramsay, but he prefers to Reek. Eventually gets support as queen of the Iron Islands, but Uncle Euron comes along and ruins everything. Flees with Theon to align with Daenerys. Despite all her experience on the sea, still manages to get owned twice on the water by Euron.
Status: Queen of the Iron Islands

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Euron Greyjoy – Theon and Yara’s estranged uncle. Had been gallivanting around the globe, but returned to Pyke to kill his brother and claim the throne, which he successfully does. Runs Theon and Yara into exile and aligns with Cersei Lannister after building the Iron Fleet. Successfully captures Yara and manages to kill one of Daenerys’ dragons, Rhaegal. His fleet gets burned when she gets super pissed and he washes ashore and decides to fight Jaime Lannister for reasons.
Status: Dead

Tywin Lannister – Lord of Casterly Rock and head of House Lannister. Father to Jaime, Cersei and Tyrion. Served as Hand of the King to Tommen, orchestrated Tyron’s trial for Joffrey’s murder to pressure Jaime to leave the Kingsguard. Decided to sleep with Tyrion’s whore, Shae, which made Tyrion mad enough to shoot him with a crossbow on the shitter.
Status: Dead.

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Jaime Lannister – Son of Tywin, known as the Kingslayer for killing Aerys Targaryen, the “Mad King”. Enjoys banging his sister, Cersei and gets caught by Bran, who he pushes out of a tower window. Gets caught by Robb Stark’s army in battle, then freed by Catelyn Stark to supposedly be traded for Sansa and Arya in Kings Landing by Brienne of Tarth. Along the way, he gets caught by Boltons and his hand falls off his body. Eventually makes it back to Kings Landing, becoming BFFs with Brienne along the way. Travels with Bronn to Dorne to rescue his bastard daughter Myrcella, who dies on the way back from poison. Successfully takes Riverrun and Highgarden, but his envoy is attacked and roundly defeated by Daenerys’ forces. Later agrees to fight the Army of the Dead and then knights Ser Brienne in more than one way. Dies trying to rescue stupid Cersei.
Status: Dead

Tyrion Lannister – Son of Tywin, known as The Imp, Halfman, etc., as he is a dwarf. Dreams to die with a belly full of wine and a whore’s mouth on his cock. Forced to marry Sansa, but falls in love with a whore, Shae, and is the only one who talks shit to his bastard nephew, King Joffrey. As a result, he’s tried for Joffrey’s murder and when Jaime and Varys help him escape he kills his father, Tywin, for sleeping with Shae and planning on having him executed. He escapes across the Narrow Sea to find Daenerys and join her cause. Escapes slavery with Jorah to convince Dany to add him as an advisor given his experience in Westeros. Becomes Hand of the Queen and does a pretty mediocre job in her service, but remains loyal until she burns Kings Landing. Tosses his little Hand brooch on the ground and she tosses him in the slammer instead of burning him for some reason. Convinces Jon to off her, then convinces everyone that Bran should be king for some reason. Despite his shitty record as Hand, he becomes Hand of the King for Bran.
Status: Hand of the King

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Cersei Lannister – Daughter of Tywin, lover of Jaime, hater of Tyrion (and pretty much everybody else). Mother of Joffrey, Tommen and Myrcella. Married to King Robert Baratheon, but all her kids are by her brother Jaime. Arranged King Robert’s death, and was generally a crazy bitch through both of her sons reigns, blamed her brother Tyrion for Joffrey’s murder. Brought the High Sparrow to power which promptly backfired when he locked her in the dungeon for incest. Blew up the Sept of Baelor with all her enemies inside as payback, which led to Tommen offing himself. Somehow became Queen of the Seven Kingdoms after that with FrankenMountain as her personal protector. Agreed to help fight the Army of the Dead, but then was all LOL, JK. Slept with Euron, but was really using him for his fleet. Bolstered her army with the Golden Company to hold Kings Landing against Daenerys, but they lasted all of about five seconds. Dies trying to escape Kings Landing.
Status: Dead

Joffrey Baratheon – Supposed son of Robert and Cersei, but really Jaime. Becomes King of the Seven Kingdoms after Robert’s death. Responsible for Ned Stark’s execution, then loves rubbing it in Sansa’s face. Bully and coward, set to marry Sansa until Margaery Tyrell comes along. At their wedding, he is poisoned and dies.
Status: Dead

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Tommen Baratheon – Supposed son of Robert and Cersei, but really Jaime. Becomes King of the Seven Kingdoms after Joffrey’s death. Aligns with the crazy High Sparrow and gives the Faith too much power. Watches the Sept of Baelor explode with his wife, Margaery inside. Overcome with grief, he offs himself out a window.
Status: Dead

Myrcella Baratheon – Supposed daughter of Robert and Cersei, but really Jaime. Betrothed to the Prince of Dorne, but her life is threatened after Prince Oberyn Martell dies defending Tyrion. Jaime and Bronn travel to Dorne and bring her back, but as she leaves, she’s poisoned by Ellaria Sand, Oberyn’s lover.
Status: Dead

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Robert Baratheon – King of the Seven Kingdoms who assumed rule after the Mad King was killed. Names Ned Stark his Hand after the previous one dies. Goes on a hunting trip and gets mortally wounded.
Status: Dead

Gendry Baratheon – Bastard son of Robert, works as a blacksmith in Kings Landing. Flees to avoid being killed as he’s an heir, runs across Arya as they’re headed north. Gets captured, escapes then captured by the Brotherhood and handed over to Stannis as the Red Lady sees his kings blood. Ser Davos helps him escape, returns to Kings Landing and starts smithing again. Ser Davos comes back for him and he leaves to help fight the Army of the Dead. Has sexy time with Arya. Gets legitimized by Daenerys as Lord Gendry Baratheon of Storm’s End and proposes to Arya, but she’s all like “yeah, I’m no Lady.”
Status: Lord of Storm’s End

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Renly Baratheon – Brother of Robert, believes he is the heir to the throne given that Joffrey is a bastard. Married to Margaery, but enjoys the company of her brother Loras a bit more. Killed by blood magic.
Status: Dead

Stannis Baratheon – Brother of Robert, believes he is the heir to the throne given that Joffrey is a bastard. Takes up with the Red Lady who uses blood magic to have his brother Renly murdered and may have had influence in Robb Stark and King Joffrey’s murders. Has his daughter Shireen burned at the stake as a sacrifice. Killed after combat with House Bolton by Lady Brienne, who was Kingsguard to Renly.
Status: Dead.

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Selyse Baratheon – Wife of Stannis, mother of Shireen. Believer in the Lord of Light and terrible mother as she goes along with having her only daughter burned at the stake as a sacrifice. Rightfully offed herself.
Status: Dead

Shireen Baratheon – Daughter of Stannis and Selyse. Infected with greyscale at a young age, but survived, though she’s slightly disfigured. Probably the purest character on the show. Helps Ser Davos learn to read and enjoys Westerosi history. Burned at the stake as a sacrifice to the Lord of Light.
Status: Dead

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Lady Melisandre – Known as the Red Lady, she’s an ancient priestess to the Lord of Light. Believes Stannis is the true ruler of the Seven Kingdoms chosen by the Lord of Light, but was wrong. Has sexy time with Stannis. Has sexy time with Gendry. Changes her belief to Jon Snow after the Lord of Light resurrects him. Tries to have sexy time with Jon. Is exiled after Jon and Davos realize she burned Shireen at the stake. Returns to Winterfell for the Long Night and sets the Dothraki blades aflame, and also lights the trench. Dies after removing the necklace that keeps her young.
Status: Dead

Davos Seaworth – Originally a smuggler, becomes knighted and made Hand by Stannis Baratheon. Helps save Gendry from the Red Lady and Stannis, which results in him put in the dungeon for treason. Shireen visits him and helps him learn to read during his imprisonment. Stannis frees him , but he seeks vengeance against the Red Lady after what happens to Shireen. After Stannis dies, he decides to hang out with Jon Snow and helps out in the Battle of the Bastards. After that, he acts as an advisor to Jon after he’s made King in the North.
Status: Alive

Sandor Clegane – Known as The Hound, and brother to The Mountain, he served as a personal guard to Joffrey. Fought in the Battle of the Blackwater before deciding that he didn’t want to fight for someone as lame as Joffrey and decided to peace out. Offered to take Sansa with him, but she would rather chill with someone who enjoyed putting her dad’s head on a stick, apparently. Anyway, he eventually runs across Arya and they hang out like the odd couple and go on a series of adventures, with his goal of selling her to her Aunt Lysa. Unfortunately he runs across Brienne of Tarth and she beats him in a dual, leaving him for dead. Arya steals his gold and also leaves him for dead. But he doesn’t die and is instead rescued by that guy from Deadwood who’s a Septon trying to build a new town. Some members of the Brotherhood come through and decide to kill Sandor’s new friends, so Sandor hunts them down for revenge, but decides to chill with the other members of the brotherhood instead. They teach him to look at fire and he sees the dead and the wall, so they head north to help out. Jon Snow finds them all locked up in a dungeon and frees them to help him find a wight to capture and show to Cersei. Sandor somehow survives that and finally gets to see Cersei and his mutant brother again when they deliver the wight to Kings Landing. He fights in the Great War, but has another moment where he peaces out, but sees Arya in trouble and goes to try and help her. After the war, he heads south to kill his brother, and Arya joins him to kill Cersei. He finds his brother in the Red Keep and kills both of them by tackling him through a wall and falling into flames.
Status: Dead

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Gregor Clegane – Known as The Mountain, and brother to The Hound, he served the Lannisters. He fought for the crown in Tyrion’s trial by combat against the Dornish prince, Oberyn Martell. He was badly injured, but won by crushing his opponent’s head in his hands. Grandmaester Qyburn saved him by making him a Frankenclegane, committed to serving Cersei and killing her enemies. He was killed his brother as the Red Keep burned.
Status: Dead

Oberyn Martell – Prince of Dorne and known as The Viper. Blamed the Lannisters and The Mountain for his sister’s death, so he fought on Tyrion’s behalf at his trial by combat. Spoke to much when he should’ve finished Gregor, which resulted in his head getting crushed.
Status: Dead

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Ellaria Sand – paramour of Oberyn, she gets super angy when he dies defending Tyrion. She threatens Cersei’s daughter Myrcella which leads to Bronn and Jaime traveling to Dorne to bring her home. She poisons Myrcella and kills Doran Martell, the ruling Prince of Dorne, somehow assuming power despite being a bastard. Anyway, she pledges Dornish forces to Daenerys and in the course of sailing from Dragonstone to Dorne, Euron attacks and takes her and Yara prisoner. She is delivered to Cersei, tossed in a dungeon and made to watch her daughter die from the same poison that killed Myrcella.
Status: Dead (presumably)

Bronn – Started off as a lowborn sellsword in Catelyn’s service as she travels to the Vale. When Tyrion demands a trial by combat, Bronn decides to step in and fight on his behalf and winning. He is then in Tyrion’s service and they agree that he works for gold, not as a sworn sword. Tyrion promises to beat any other offer Bronn receives. Bronn finds Shae for Tyrion at the Battle of Green Fork, then accompanies Tyrion to Kings Landing when he is named Hand and Bronn is commander of the City Watch. Bronn was responsible for lighting the wildfire that destroyed Stannis’ fleet at the Battle of the Blackwater and is knighted by King Joffrey for his efforts, now Ser Bronn of the Blackwater. Later, Bronn helps Jaime retrain after the loss of his right hand, ending up in Jaime’s service. He is betrothed to Lollys Stokeworth, which would make him a minor nobleman. He assists Jaime to retrieve Myrcella in Dorne and again at Riverrun and Highgarden, receiving a large bag of gold for his efforts. He successfully fires the Scorpion at Drogon, injuring him, then saves Jaime from being killed by the dragon. After Jaime deserts Kings Landing to fight the Army of the Dead, Cersei promises Bronn a wagonful of gold and Riverrun to kill Jaime and Tyrion. Bronn confronts them and Tyrion offers Highgarden as a way of doubling the offer. Bronn resurfaces after the Last War and is named Master of Coin to Bran.
Status: Lord of Highgarden, Lord Paramount of the Reach, Master of Coin

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Aemon Targaryen – brother of King Aegon V, and great-uncle to Viserys and Daenerys, he was heir to the Iron Throne but abdicated and took the black instead. Educated at the Citadel, was grandmaester of Castle Black. Supported Jon Snow for Lord Commander and was welcoming to Gilly when women were not allowed at the Wall. One of very few people who died of natural causes.
Status: Dead

Viserys Targaryen – Son of King Aerys II, the “Mad King,” brother of Daenerys. Heir to the Iron Throne but exiled across the Narrow Sea. Plans to wed his sister to Khal Drogo of the Dothraki to gain an army to retake the throne. Generally a douchebag and, displeased with Drogo’s pace of things, he gets a bit riled up, demanding his crown. Drogo gives it to him.
Status: Dead

Daenerys Targaryen – Daughter of King Aerys II, the “Mad King,” sister of Viserys and first of her name. Forced to wed Khal Drogo, she becomes the Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea. After Viserys dies, she becomes the rightful queen of the Andals, the Rhoynar and the First Men. After the walks out of the pyre fire for Drogo, she becomes the Unburnt and Mother of Dragons when Drogon, Viserion and Rhaegal are born. Once she frees the Unsullied army and the slaves of Slaver’s Bay, she becomes the Breaker of Chains. Procures a fleet and floats across the Narrow Sea with three dragons, the Unsullied, the Dothraki, her advisor Missandei, her “general” Grey Worm, Hand Tyrion and advisor Varys, instructing Ser Jorah to seek a cure for his greyscale. She takes out a Lannister army with her dragons and the Dothraki, nearly killing Bronn and Jaime in the process, and executes Samwell’s father and brother. In Dragonstone she allies with Yara and Theon, then Jon Snow and Ser Davos visit to seek her help against the dead and permission to mine dragonglass. She agrees to an armistice with Cersei to fight the dead and for Jon Snow to bring back a wight to prove their existence to her. Jon and his team become surrounded, so she flies up there to save them with Drogon, Rhaegal and Viserion, the latter of which is killed and then risen as part of the Night King’s army. She and Jon Snow have sexy time. Cersei agrees to send her army then does takesy-backsies which makes Tyrion look like an idiot after they march up to Winterfell. Jon Snow is also like, hey, you’re actually my aunt. During the Great War against the dead, most of her Dothraki and Unsullied are purportedly killed and dragonfire apparently doesn’t work against the Night King. Oops. Jorah dies defending her. Oops. Fortunately a Girl was able to kill the Night King with a dope move, saving the living. Dany doesn’t feel the love after helping in this fight and implores Jon Snow not to tell anybody about his true name, so of course he does. Once Varys finds out, he’s all like, it’s not a secret, it’s information now. As they sail back to Dragonstone, despite air superiority, her armada is somehow surprise-attacked, resulting in Rhaegal’s death and Missandei’s capture. Cersei executes Missandei when Dany asks for her surrender, which makes her pretty angy. She decides to attack Kings Landing as soon as her armies arrive from the North, using Drogon to burn Euron’s fleet and all the Scorpions with amazing ease. Tyrion told her the bells would toll once the city surrendered and toll they do. Those bells, apparently they make her angy too. So she takes Drogon and burns the entire city, civilians and all. Bitch be cold. After the Last War is over, she makes a speech about how great this all is and how they’re going to keep going through Westeros and the world. Tyrion tosses his Hand brooch in front of her and she somehow jails him instead of burning him, because reasons, I guess. She meets up with her super sexy nephew in the throne room and wants more sexy time but he gives her a different kind of stabby-stab this time. Drogon burns the iron throne and gently picks up her body, flying away.
Status: Dead

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Missandei – she was a slave in Astapor, acting as a translator. When Daenerys agreed to purchase the Unsullied, she demanded Missandei as a gift, setting her and the Unsullied free. She served as Daenerys’ advisor and closest friend and fell in love with Grey Worm. She was captured when Euron attacked Daenerys’ fleet and executed by Cersei when Daenerys would not surrender.
Status: Dead

Grey Worm – an Unsullied soldier, he was acquired with the army when Daenerys came to Astapor. She granted their freedom and asked they decide on a leader, and Grey Worm was chosen. He served her loyally throughout Slavers Bay and sacked Casterly Rock when they traveled to Westeros. He led the Unsullied in combat in the Great War to fight the army of the dead and protect the retreat. He fell in love with Missandei and sought vengeance after she was executed, joining in with Daenerys in ensuring the complete destruction of Kings Landing, killing surrendered soldiers. After the Last War, he was named Master of War by Daenerys and pledged to fight all of her enemies. After Jon killed Dany, he held him captive until it was agreed upon for Jon to take the black as the Unsullied prepared to head to Naath.
Status: Alive

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Lord Varys – lowborn and turned into a eunuch by a master, rose to the Master of Whisperers under King Robert Baratheon. After his death, he sought to support Daenerys Targaryen, helping Tyrion escape when accused of Joffrey’s murder across the Narrow Sea. Eventually meets up with Team Daenerys and joins her group of advisors. Becomes disenchanted with her as he sees her penchant for brutal justice and then learns that Jon Snow is the true heir to the Iron Throne. Writes letters to inform others of this news and how he believes Dany is unfit for the throne, may or may not have tried to poison her. Always held the realm’s best interests in his heart, which resulted in a Varys BBQ.
Status: Dead

Jorah Mormont – Disgraced knight living across the Narrow Sea, sent to spy on Viserys and Daenerys by Lord Varys and King Robert Baratheon. Instead, he falls in love with Dany, pledges his sword and becomes her most trusted advisor. She finds out about his dishonesty and exiles him, so he kidnaps Tyrion to bring as a gift. She exiles him again, so he fights in a tournament in Slavers Bay to win her affection, saving her life when the Sons of the Harpy attack. She finally accepts his apology and orders him to find a cure for greyscale, which he does at the Citadel by Samwell Tarly. Reunites with Daenerys in Dragonstone and resumes his place as a loyal advisor. Defends her to his dying breath in the Great War against the dead.
Status: Dead.

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Jeor Mormont – Lord Commander of the Nights Watch. Takes Jon Snow as his steward and gifts his Valyrian steel sword to him. After leading an expedition north, his men mutiny and he is killed.
Status: Dead

Lyanna Mormont – Lady of Bear Island, niece of Jeor and cousin of Jorah. Ultimo pint-sized badass who just tells it like it is, helps out Jon Snow with troops for the Battle of the Bastards and proclaims him King of the North. Fights in the Great War and takes out a giant as it squishes her to death. Briefly became a wight and probably talked mad shit as she chewed off people’s faces.
Status: Dead

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Walder Frey – Lord of the Crossing and bannerman of House Tully. He refuses to help Robb Stark in his war against the Lannisters unless Robb agrees to marry one of his (many, ugly) daughters. Robb ends up reneging on the deal so at the wedding where Robb was supposed to be the groom, Walder has his men kill Robb, his wife and Catelyn with Lannister support. He is now Lord of Riverrun yet no bannermen of House Tully will lend their support. During a feast after defeating House Tully’s retaking of Riverrun, Walder is unknowingly feasting on pie made from his progeny, which has been served to him by a Faceless Arya. She removes her face and slits his throat open, watching with immense satisfaction as he bleeds out.
Status: Dead

Petyr Baelish – lowborn, known as Littlefinger, he served as Master of Coin to Robert Baratheon. Conspired to have Ned Stark take the throne after Robert’s death, he double-crossed him to gain influence with the Lannisters. He helped Sansa escape after Joffrey’s murder and took her to the Eyrie to meet her Aunt Lysa, whom he was set to marry. Just after their marriage, he killed Lysa by throwing her through the moon door after she caught him smooching Sansa. He sent her son Robin to train and took Sansa north to Winterfell to wed her to Ramsay Bolton. After she escaped, he said he had no idea what a monster Ramsay was and offered her the Knights of the Vale in the impending Battle of the Bastards. Sansa, being an idiot, of course said she didn’t want his help, even though it would’ve saved countless lives before she had to request help at the last second. At Winterfell, he gives Bran the Valyrian steel dagger the assassin tried to use against him and plots to turn Arya and Sansa against one another. They see through his plot and give him a surprise trial. He is found guilty and Arya gives him a taste of his old dagger.
Status: Dead

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Lysa Arryn – Lady of the Vale, widow of the Hand of the King to Robert Baratheon, Jon Arryn. She loves herself two things – feeding her way too old son from her boob and some Baelish. She marries Baelish then catches him giving Sansa a smooch, confronts them, and ends up getting tossed through the moon door.
Status: Dead

Robin Arryn – son of Lysa, has a penchant for breastmilk. Gets sent off for training after his mom dies and we don’t see him again until the finale. He still looked like he had a penchant for breastmilk.
Status: Lord of the Eyrie, Defender of the Vale, Warden of the East

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Roose Bolton – Lord of the Dreadfort and bannerman of House Stark. Cuts a deal with Tywin Lannister and helps arrange the Red Wedding with Walder Frey, resulting in the death of Robb Stark, his wife and Catelyn Stark. Takes Winterfell and lets his bastard son Ramsay run wild. He plots with Baelish to have Sansa wedded to Ramsay to have the North support the Boltons, but she escapes with Theon because of Ramsay’s brutality. He then expresses his disappointment to Ramsay, and his told that his newborn baby is in fact a boy. Ramsay gives him the ol’ stabby stab.
Status: Dead

Ramsay Bolton – bastard son of Roose, gets legitimized after depleting Stannis’ forces in the night. Takes Theon captive and turns him into his servant Reek. Roundly defeats Stannis’ army, and marries Sansa Stark, repeatedly abusing her. Kills Rickon Stark before the Battle of the Bastards to piss off Jon, which works. The Bolton army is going to win the battle until the Knights of the Vale show up and ruin everything, so Ramsay flees back to Winterfell to hide behind its walls. Too bad Jon’s army has a giant, who opens sesame. Jon rides in and punches Ramsay quite a few times right in his stupid face. Sansa locks the beaten and bloody Ramsay in the kennels and lets his beloved dogs get a nice meal after a week without.
Status: Dead

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Brienne of Tarth – Kingsguard to Renly Baratheon, she fails when he’s murdered by the “shadow” of his brother. Pledges herself to Catelyn Stark, who asks her to escort Jaime Lannister back to Kings Landing and then protect her daughters. Ends up befriending Jaime, and he saves her from being raped after they’re captured by Boltons. After Jaime’s freedom is purchased, he sees Brienne in the bear pit and jumps down to save her, much to the Bolton men’s chagrin. She delivers Jaime in time for Joffrey’s wedding, paying tribute to Joffrey. Runs across Arya traveling with The Hound. Tries to convince Arya to come, but she won’t trust her, fights The Hound, defeating him, but unable to find Arya. She catches up with Sansa later who refuses to trust her because of her kneeling to Joffrey. Continues to follow Sansa to Winterfell, where she is forced to marry Ramsay and offers her a way out, which Sansa never takes because she’s stupid. When she finally does take it, Brienne is busy killing Stannis, getting vengeance for Renly at long last. After Theon helps Sansa escape Winterfell, Brienne saves them from the Bolton hunting party and pledges her sword to Sansa, who finally stops being an idiot and accepts. Takes Sansa to Castle Black to reunite with Jon and fights in the Battle of the Bastards to take back Winterfell. Serves as Sansa’s protector/advisor in Winterfell when she becomes Lady of Winterfell after Jon heads south. Gets knighted by Jaime. Fights in the Great War against the dead, getting drunk at the victory feast the next day. Has sexy time with Jaime, but he peaces out because he loves his sister more. Poor Brienne. After the Last War, she becomes Lord Commander of the Kingsguard for Bran, and finishes writing Jaime’s story in the Kingsguard book.
Status: Lord Commander of the Kingsguard

Podrick Payne – served as squire to Tyrion Lannister, and saves his life during the Battle of Blackwater. After Tyrion recovers, he sends him to find Bronn, who is in a brothel, who says that Tyrion needs to repay Pod for saving his life. He gets three prostitutes to take his V card, but apparently Pod is so well equipped, they didn’t ask for payment, so Pod got some gold too. After Joffrey’s death, Pod was offered knighthood to testify against Tyrion, but refused. When Brienne is tasked by Jaime to find Sansa and keep her safe, Pod is assigned to be her squire, having a series of challenges in his squireship along the way. After serving Brienne faithfully, she agrees to help train Pod in combat. He helps train others at Winterfell before the Great War and fights against the army of the dead. After the Last War, Pod is knighted and becomes a member of the Kingsguard, tasked with pushing Bran’s wheelchair around.
Status: Kingsguard and wheelchair pusher

Randyll Tarly – Lord of Horn Hill. Asshole douchebag, allies with the Lannisters to backstab the Tullys. Won’t backstab the Lannisters to bend the knee to Daenerys because apparently he has loyalty now, which results in a Randyll BBQ.
Status: Dead

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Melessa Tarly – Lady of Horn Hill. Super nice and welcoming to Gilly, no clue why she married Randyll.
Status: Alive

Dickon Tarly – Son of Randyll and Melessa, heir to Horn Hill. Executed by Daenerys for not bending the knee.
Status: Dead

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Talla Tarly – Daughter of Randyll and Melessa. Super nice and welcoming to Gilly, gives her a dress.
Status: Alive

Samwell Tarly – Son of Randyll and Melessa, disowned heir to Horn Hill, sent to the Nights Watch. Befriends Jon Snow at Castle Black. Rescues a wildling, Gilly and her son, Sam, from Craster’s Keep on an expedition north. Manages to kill a white walker with dragonglass. Tries to fight off some brothers who want to have sexy time with Gilly, fortunately Ghost saves their asses. Has sexy time with Gilly. Helps hold Castle Black against a wildling attack, then peaces out to head to the Citadel to become a maester. Saves Jorah Mormont with a rare treatment for greyscale then decides the archmaesters are stupid and steals some books and heads back to Castle Black for the Great War. Does more hiding than fighting but manages to survive. Resurfaces in Kings Landing as grand maester after his four months of training.
Status: Grand Maester of Kings Landing

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Mace Tyrell – Lord of Highgarden who allies with the Lannisters, betrothing Margaery to Joffrey, then Tommen and Loras to Cersei. During Tommen’s reign, he becomes Master of Coin and works to settle the crown’s debt to the Iron Bank and ends up supplanting that with funds from Highgarden. Was in the Sept of Baelor that got all explody.
Status: Dead

Olenna Tyrell – Lady of Highgarden and Mace’s mother. Witty old bitty who befriended Sansa to help her and Margaery find out what Joffrey was really like. Confesses to Margarey that she was behind Joffrey’s death because she wouldn’t let her daughter marry that monster, and we all immediately became Lady Olenna fans if we weren’t already. Talks mad shit to Cersei and the High Sparrow so the remaining fans are now Team Olenna. Margaery convinces her to return to Highgarden to stay away from the crazies and it’s a good thing she did because she avoids the Sept exploding. Knowing that Cersei was behind it, she allies with Daenerys, which results in the Lannisters sacking Highgarden. Jaime offers her a gentle poison and, after drinking it, she tells him she killed his bastard son with pleasure.
Status: Dead

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Margaery Tyrell/Baratheon/Baratheon/Baratheon – Daughter of Mace who is married to Renly, despite him preferring her brother Loras. After Renly dies, she travels to Kings Landing and is betrothed to King Joffrey, which makes Sansa happy to be rid of that schmuck. On her wedding day, Joffrey is poisoned, so she sets her sites on his brother Tommen. After Tommen is crowned, she visits him in his room, which somehow doesn’t bother anybody despite the fact the kid looks 12. Marries Tommen and he really appreciates sexy time with her, as any 12yo boy would. Renly didn’t know what he was missing. Anyway, Tommen allows the High Sparrow power and Margaery lies to protect her brother, so she gets tossed in the dungeon, despite being the queen. She eventually repents and on the day of Cersei and Loras’ trials, she’s the only one that realizes what’s about to happen as Cersei explodes the Sept of Baelor with wildfire.
Status: Dead

Loras Tyrell – Son of Mace who really appreciates the company of Renly Baratheon. After Renly dies, he finds company with many of the male prostitutes of Kings Landing, which lands him in hot water after the High Sparrow gains power. He’s tossed in a cell and was on trial in the Sept of Baelor when it exploded. Hey, at least he didn’t have to marry Cersei.
Status: Dead

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Alliser Thorne – Ranger of the Nights Watch, thorn (heh) in the side of Jon Snow. Basically self-appoints after Lord Commander Mormont dies, but ends up losing the general election to Jon Snow. Gives Jon a stabby stab after he lets the Wildlings into Castle Black and is then executed after Jon is risen.
Status: Dead

Janos Slynt – Disgraced commander of the City Watch, forced to take the black. Decides to befriend Alliser and be part of the bully pulpit. Refuses Jon’s first order as Lord Commander, so Jon executes him, despite his pleas for mercy.
Status: Dead

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Olly – Kid who lived in a northern village sacked by Wildlings. Made it to Castle Black to tell them of the happenings and becomes Jon’s steward and friend. Despite Jon taking Olly in and befriending him, he gets super angy when Jon lets the Wildlings in and joins the Jon stabby stab party. Gets executed once Jon has risen.
Status: Dead

Eddison Tollett – Joined up the Nights Watch with Jon and they become bros. Commands the wall during the fight with the Wildlings and supports Jon for Lord Commander. Once Jon leaves the black, Dolorous Edd becomes Lord Commander. Meets back up with Jon and Samwell at Winterfell for the Great War. Dies saving Sam’s life.
Status: Dead

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Mance Rayder – King Beyond the Wall. Let Jon Snow in amongst his people, and then led them to Castle Black to get past the wall. After the first battle, Jon heads out to try and kill him, but Stannis rides in with his army and captures their army. Stannis needs support and wants Mance to bend the knee, but he refuses, so Stannis burns him at the stake. As an act of mercy, Jon shoots an arrow into Mance’s heart.
Status: Dead

Tormund Giantsbane – One of Mance’s loyal followers. A wildling who killed a giant and then crawled in bed with his wife, who mistook him for a baby and nursed him for a couple months. He likes big women, so he’s a big Ser Brienne fan. Brings the Wildlings into an accord with the Nights Watch and helps evacuate Hardhome as the Night King visits. Fights alongside Jon in the Battle of the Bastards and helps defend Winterfell against the Army of the Dead. Never gets his sexy time with Brienne and returns to Castle Black and then beyond the wall.
Status: Alive

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The Night King – one of the First Men, the Children of the Forest plunged a dragonglass dagger into his heart with a sprinkle of magic and created him to help defend them against men. Like any creation, he ultimately turned on them and everyone else, raising an army of the dead to strip the world of memory (I guess). We have this huge buildup and the dude looks unstoppable, but he gets a Valyrian steel dagger to the gut from Arya and that’s that, all his white walkers shatter and their wights fall over. Womp womp.
Status: Dead

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I know I’m omitting some characters and probably some that I didn’t mean to omit but should have been included, but from this (massive) list, who won? Obviously can’t be anybody who died, so let’s poor one out for the following:

Dead: Ned Stark, Catelyn Stark, Robb Stark, Rickon Stark, Theon Greyjoy, Euron Greyjoy, Tywin Lannister, Jaime Lannister, Cersei Lannister, Joffrey Baratheon, Tommen Baratheon, Myrcella Baratheon, Robert Baratheon, Renly Baratheon, Stannis Baratheon, Selyse Baratheon, Shireen Baratheon, Lady Melisandre, Sandor Clegane, Gregor Clegane, Oberyn Martell, Ellaria Sand, Aemon Targaryen, Viserys Targaryen, Daenerys Targaryen, Missandei, Lord Varys, Jorah Mormont, Jeor Mormont, Lyanna Mormont, Walder Frey, Petyr Baelish, Lysa Arryn, Roose Bolton, Ramsay Bolton, Randyll Tarly, Dickon Tarly, Mace Tyrell, Olenna Tyrell, Margaery Tyrell, Loras Tyrell, Alliser Thorne, Janos Slynt, Olly, Eddison Tollett, Mance Rayder, The Night King.

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Shit. Okay, let’s see who’s still alive:

Alive: Sansa Stark, Arya Stark, Bran Stark, Jon Snow, Yara Greyjoy, Tyrion Lannister, Gendry Baratheon, Davos Seaworth, Bronn, Grey Worm, Robin Arryn, Brienne of Tarth, Podrick Payne, Melessa Tarly, Talla Tarly, Samwell Tarly, Tormund Giantsbane

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A much smaller list. Clearly Yara, Tyrion, Ser Davos, Grey Worm, Robin Arryn, Podrick, the Tarlys and Tormund aren’t going to be winners, so let’s break down the rest:

Sansa Stark – largely an idiot throughout the series, she ends up as Queen in the North mostly because of her lineage. If Bran wasn’t king and if Robb or Rickon were alive, she’d be shit. She didn’t gain much, add much or elevate her status much. She didn’t even have to do any negotiation to get the north independent. She definitely didn’t win.

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Arya Stark – kicked ass throughout the show but doesn’t want to rule or have power, preferring exploration. Despite that being awesome, it basically means she didn’t win either.

Bran Stark – essentially took one step up from where he’d otherwise be – King of the North. Despite sitting on the throne, he didn’t win the game.

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Jon Snow – the deck was stacked in his favor as starting off as a bastard and finishing with the strongest claim to the throne, Jon “Queenslayer” Snow doesn’t win as he tromps off north of the wall.

Gendry Baratheon – he has a shot, started off as a bastard, got himself legitimized by Daenerys and now sits as Lord of Storms End. He also got sexy time with Arya, which is a big ol’ win in and of itself.

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Bronn – started as a lowborn sellsword and worked his way up to Lord of Highgarden, Lord Paramount of the Reach and Master of Coin on the kings small council. Bronn played to win.

Brienne of Tarth – highborn, trained fighter. She longs to be a knight, which she accomplishes, longs to bang Jaime Lannister, which she accomplishes and ends up Lord Commander of the Kingsguard. She played the game well and did so with loyalty.

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Ranking the Top 7 (for Seven Kingdoms, obviously):

7. Arya Stark
6. Sansa Stark
5. Jon Snow
4. Bran Stark
3. Brienne of Tarth
2. Gendry Baratheon
1. Bronn

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Bronn clearly won. He was a lowborn sellsword who fought, scrapped and blackmailed his way along for everything he gained. He even spelled it out for Jaime and Tyrion in that little tavern when he reminded them of how their house got its start – at the tip of a sword, baby. Gendry and Brienne came close, Bran finishes fourth since he actually did end up on the throne and someone could probably make an argument for how he played everybody along the way to get what he wanted (even though he apparently doesn’t “want” anymore, lying ass). Jon probably should’ve won, but really misplayed his hand there at the end. Sansa was just there, taking up space, and Arya was all like, “fuck this, a girl doesn’t play your stupid games.”

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