Game of Thrones has long been known for killing off its major characters, so it’s no surprise that its last ever series had the biggest butcher’s bill of them all.
Below, we’ve collected together every significant death we could think of (not counting any really minor characters or anyone only introduced this year) as a special memorial for those we’ve lost in Westeros overall.
Jon Snow, Sansa, Arya, Tyrion, Tormund Davos, Pod, Brienne, Bronn, Grey Worm, Bran, Yohn Royce, Yara Greyjoy, even Edmure Tully and Robin Arryn – in the end, they all made it though, but plenty of others weren’t so lucky.
When you play the Game of Thrones, you win or you die – but to be honest, you probably just die.
After leaning into her worst impulses and burning King’s Landing, it seemed inevitable that Dany was in for a fall – and when Jon Snow finally decided to act without honour, it led to one of the series’ most tragic deaths.
No, she never sat on the Iron Throne. But at least she got in one last flight with Drogon.
Look, we had to start somewhere, OK? And poor little Ned’s crucifixion death scene was too spooky for words…
We all knew Edd’s days were probably numbered in the Battle for Winterfell – but dying to save Sam’s life seemed like an oddly fitting end for Ben Crompton’s Night’s Watch cynic.
The toughest noble lady in Westeros went out how she lived, taking down a wight giant with her after refusing to hide in the crypts with the other children.
Finally redeeming himself after his betrayal in season two, Alfie Allen’s Theon died protecting Bran from the Night King, and earned himself the dubious distinction of becoming the only human ever killed by the White Walker leader onscreen.
Ser Jorah Mormont
While we might now wish Jorah had stuck around a little longer to curb his queen’s worst impulses, we can’t deny he went out exactly how he’d have dreamed – defending Daenerys and then collapsing into her arms.
Apparently, the Lord of Light only kept Beric long enough to nerf his flaming sword into a zombie and then act as a human shield. Makes us wonder what the fire god has planned for fellow resurrectee Jon…
The Night King (and friends)
The White Walker CEO took a surprise early retirement when he met Arya Stark and her Valyrian steel dagger. In the end, though, maybe he wasn’t so bad. At least he gave jobs to all the people HE murdered!
The fire priestess from Essos went out in a (literal) blaze of glory, using her abilities to light the arakhs of the Dothraki and the crucial fiery trench around Winterfell in episode three.
If nothing else, she at least gave us SOME lighting in that episode, so we can hardly blame her for loping off to die afterwards.
Daenerys’ second dragon death came as a brutal shock, and is at least partially what drove her to murderous revenge. But after losing Viserion in season seven, did NOBODY consider investing in some handy dragon armour?
Dany’s loyal handmaiden was a tragic victim of the writer’s need to accelerate the Mad Queen storyline Cersei in this year’s fourth episode, bravely joining the Unskullied as her lover Grey Worm looked on. Though we’re not sure whether she would have approved of just how literally Dany took her last words…
He’s definitely telling us “I told you so!” from heaven, but it’s hard to see how spymaster Varys could be so easily caught. When did the Master of Whisperers become so careless as to openly plot against Dany in echoey rooms of her castle and outside on the beach? And was he seriously trying to poison her ALREADY?
At the time, we could totally see why Dany went all “Dra-Varys!” on him. Even if, in hindsight, yes, he may have been right.
The award for quickest, most ignominious death probably goes to Anton Lesser’s Qyburn, with the mad scientist being thrown about like a football by his zombie version of the Mountain. Frankenstein’s monster could never.
After finally turning Arya away from a life of violence and revenge at the very last moment (didn’t she already murder loads of Freys, though??) Sandor Clegane faced off against his hated brother. Finally, the hype was real – and while it might not have lived up to the version in our imaginations, it was good to see Cleganebowl finally confirmed.
It’s just a shame we had to lose the Hound to get it.
Frankly, if a dagger through the brain can’t stop him we’re not convinced the Mountain IS dead after this episode (he was a lot harder to kill than the Night King), but he probably is a charred little puddle of gristle at this stage. A fitting revenge for all the horrors he’s caused.
Apparently, actor Pilou Asbaek refused to shut his eyes during Euron’s final scene so that we’d never technically see him die – but assuming he did kick the salty seawater bucket, at least he went out having fun. Shooting dragons! Bedding queens! And in the end, he even (sort of) took down Jaime Lannister. Not bad for a few days’ work.
Most of Lena Headey’s scenes this year revolved around her smirking at a window while drinking wine, but you know what? She did a DAMN good job of it – and her death, as she was crushed by the weight of the castle she’d fought to rule for so long, seemed oddly fitting.
Ser Jaime Lannister
Sure, Jaime’s year abroad finding himself didn’t really work out and he ended up back with his toxic ex. But you know what? He went out how he lived – weirdly in love with his horrible twin sister and generally making bad decisions – and you kind of have to salute him for that.
Assuming, of course, that he really did die after all…
And of course, don’t forget to check back here after the finale, when we’ll have an update on all of the horrible deaths suffered by main characters this series. It’s what they would have wanted.
Game of Thrones concludes on NOWTV and Sky Atlantic on Monday 20th May