For six years we've been teased that winter is coming, and finally it's here! After that resoundingly dramatic trailer dropped for Season 7, fans are already chomping at the bit to see what Game of Thrones has in store for us come July. Following the emotional rollercoaster of last season, it seems that the war for the Iron Throne is finally set to come to a head with Danaerys Targaryen, her beastly dragons and a huge army marching on Westeros to take King's Landing. However, with Cersei now having taken control of the Seven Kingdoms, things won't be as easy in terms of claiming the crown.
While Jon Snow fortifying his position as King in the North, he knows the battle against the White Walkers and the Night King matters most though, and as all this turmoil grows, it's clear that death is looming -- a lot of it. Given that George R.R. Martin and the show's writers have never shied away from killing off characters, with all this chaos and war springing forth from every direction, we're expecting a high-octane and very bloody season now that all the battle lines have been drawn and sides chosen. With that in mind, CBR decided to analyze 15 characters who we think will lose their lives in the upcoming season.
SPOILER WARNING: Major spoilers ahead for all six seasons of Game of Thrones
15 ARYA STARK
Arya Stark has been driven by the deaths of several family members, which led to her training with Jaqen to become one of the faceless assassins. We've seen her set her sights and sword, Needle, on several vile characters, but most notably, Walder Frey comes to mind. When last we saw her, she fed him pies made from the meat of his kids, and eventually slit his throat for his orchestration of the infamous Red Wedding.
While Arya's kill-list runs long, the biggest name on it is Cersei's, so it's possible she'll forego the others if she can get her hands on her. However, revenge often leads to your own downfall and Arya's relentless and violent thirst for vengeance could lead to her own demise, as pursuing Cersei spells danger because of how she's now the new ruler in King's Landing. That comes with a lot of murderous bodyguards including the zombiefied killer formerly known as the Mountain.
Petyr Baelish a.k.a. Littlefinger, as seen in the books and show, all but kickstarted this new battle for the Iron Throne. He had a hand in the deaths of Robert Baratheon, as well as King Joffrey later on, but his sneaky ways can be seen most of all with the Tully women. Littlefinger has always craved the throne, but more so he wanted Sansa's mother, Catelyn. He couldn't get her, so he also manipulated her sister, Lysa, to kill her husband, Jon Arryn, and helped push forth the death of Ned Stark.
The list goes on and on, but all of these were being done so Littlefinger could build on an obsession with Catelyn and Ned's daughter, Sansa, to rule alongside her. Given how he helped marry her to the wicked Ramsay Bolton, Jon may have a sword with his name on it and a lot of fans will be waiting to rejoice.
Gendry is Robert's son and he has one of the most legitimate claims to the throne. However, he's a bastard and, after escaping Melisandre's witchy ways thanks to Davos, he ended up rowing away to the sea for several seasons. She's still alive, so his royal blood may factor in again for her magic if she ever finds him, but as of now, he's the dark horse while Jon, Daenerys and Cersei hash it out to see who'll rule.
Chances are Gendry doesn't want to be king, but as long as he's alive, the Baratheon blood flows, so there's a good chance someone will off him. Cersei is the frontrunner as she finally has absolute power, but it would be shocking if Daenerys turned full heel and does the same as she too has craved this throne with an undying passion.
12 GREY WORM
Grey Worm hasn't just marshaled Daenerys' army of warriors called the Unsullied, he's also one of her closest friends and strategic advisers in terms of military and politics. He's as disciplined as they come with a high moral code, which means his death could be the perfect example that nice just doesn't cut it. It would also put a dent in Danaerys' camp, which is on a high at present thanks to Varys' schemes and her successful assembling of various factions, including Dorne, to attack Cersei.
Worm's death would be big in that it could also send her over the edge to losing all compassion. Having Danaerys exhibit rage would be a strong way of marching on the Iron Throne, signaling to Jon and Cersei that loss drives her on. Worm's death would be honorable and indeed has potential to be a war-winning one for the Mother of Dragons.
11 JORAH MORMONT
Jorah had a tough ride in this show. He helped oversee Danaerys' rise as someone ready to take the throne, but his unrequited love for her complicated things. Given that she exiled him after finding out he was spying on her, plus he had to watch her romance Khal Drogo (her deceased husband) and Daario Naharis, one wonders how much more can his life suck!
Oh, how about a contagious disease called greyscale that turns your skin to stone, sends you mad and leaves you as a murderous primitive monster? That's right: being "friend-zoned" is the least of his worries. However, Jorah persists as a likeable lad because of how loyal and protective he is. That said, greyscale is almost always fatal, so let's hope he finds his cure, but we admit we'd be a bit relieved if he dies and is put out his misery.
10 SAMWELL TARLY
Sam is about brains, not brawn. Given his training as a maester now and the fact that he knows dragon-glass can kill the Wights, there's a big chance he'll unlock a major secret to aid Jon Snow against the Night King and his White Walkers. However, usually when you've got a big role to play, the likelihood of dying goes up a lot.
In Sam's case, he may discover the key to winning the war against the Walkers, but what makes him a bigger candidate for death is that it'll likely spur Jon Snow on with rage, and maybe reveal some of his true powers. Jon's resurrection and how he's rumored to be the vessel for Azor Ahai a.k.a. the champion against darkness could see him go into overdrive if Sam dies, unraveling more of his glorious path while Sam's fans bawl their eyes out.
9 DAVOS SEAWORTH
Davos is one of the most honorable men on the show. He stood with Stannis Baratheon (Robert's brother) and Melisandre until he realized they were bonkers, but he didn't abandon ship as they maliciously eyed the throne, partly out of loyalty to who Stannis used to be, and partly out of his compassion with Gendry and Stannis' daughter, Shireen, who would end up becoming a human sacrificed. Davos atoned for idly standing by with this regime when he moved on to support a new leader in Jon, while now using Melisandre to his advantage.
He makes Jon stronger due to his tactical acumen, diplomacy and overall trustworthiness, so to weaken Jon's claim as King in the North, enemies would be smart to take Davos out. As Jon's adviser, it would be a massive blow as Davos knows so much about kings and history in general. All wise men must come to an end at some point, so let's hope that if it's done, it's done tastefully.
8 THE MOUNTAIN
The Mountain was killed as part of a fight with Oberyn Martel (who wanted his family's revenge) but was brought back to life using Frankenstein-like science by Qyburn as Robert Strong, a zombie bodyguard and the ultimate killer. In the show, he's Cersei's main protector as she rules and we saw him squashing heads way more than usual last season. Born Gregor Clegane, he burnt his brother's (Sandor) face as a youth, so he's always been wicked and now anyone who opposes Cersei gets similarly punishmed from him.
We'd love to see Sandor take him on and get some revenge, but given that Cersei has so many haters, it could be almost anyone that he has to keep an eye out for. Gregor is even more of a killing machine now but for all his gory kills, we'd love to see karma catch up with his sadistic ways.
Melisandre has been quite the scoundrel. First, she killed Renly Baratheon so his brother Stannis could have an unchallenged claim, but then her treatment of Shireen, Gendry and Jon left a sour taste in our mouths. She believes the Lord of the Light empowers her covenant to ready the world for his return, but in the wake of Stannis' death, she's been left broken and withered.
Davos and Jon made sure not to be used by her too much, but she may well have a secret plan involving smoke demons or other dark magic. To make sure she doesn't get too slithery and executes this, she deserves to be killed because, let's be real, she sacrificed a child! Brienne has it out for her over Renly's death, and given that Jon may not need her anymore after his resurrection, Melisandre may have to watch her back a lot more than expected.
6 THE HOUND
Sandor did a lot of crap too in his day, which is why Arya left him for dead. He was directly responsible for the death of her friend, so even though he seems to be on a better path now, chances are he'll have to answer for these past transgressions. It may come at Arya's hand, but we'd love to see him and Gregor slugging it out and beating each other to the death, as their lust for blood warrants just that.
As The Hound, Sandor showed no remorse for neither woman nor child, so fans won't be forgiving him any time soon. Even if he does end up helping end Cersei's reign, there's something about his aura that's scarred. It's not just his face nor his foul mouth, but rather deep down, it's his nature that he can't seem to escape which begs for a lethal comeuppance.
5 BRIENNE OF TARTH
Brienne of Tarth is another virtuous warrior in the show, anchored by a moral code. She's now off with Podrick on her undying quest to help the Stark children, but what makes her character so crucial is that she's seen as the redeeming factor that brings Jaime Lannister to the light. Cersei appears to have him tied around her finger once more, though, so it'll be intriguing to see if he ever fights Brienne.
If Brienne ends up dying, it could also tip Jaime over the her side and see him retaliate against Cersei's forces, or he could lose hope and fully go to the dark side. His journey seems intrinsically tied to Brienne, as she showed him the hero he should be, which places a target on her back. Tyrion is already doing good in the world, so do we need Jaime to follow his brother's path a la the books?
4 BABY SAM
Gilly is a character you felt a lot of sympathy for in the show. Impregnated by her father, her kin was also prey to the White Walkers early on as well, so we were relieved when she escaped with Sam and eventually gave birth to baby Sam. They're with big Sam now while he studies at the Citadel to become a maester, but when it comes to this trio, tragedy here will resonate in big ways.
We're not talking about Gilly's death, but rather that of baby Sam. This show pulls no punches and goes as reprehensible and shocking as can be, with no limits ever defined. We already saw the Wights turn a live baby into one of them, and in this case, it may not even be a Wight, but simply an enemy of Jon Snow who takes the baby out, even as collateral damage.
3 A DRAGON
We all love Danaerys' dragons, but let's be real, they give her a huge advantage when it comes to taking the throne. We're not sure if the show will follow the path of having a dragon-rider for each as the books hint, but to even the odds, there's a chance one will die. If it falls, it will either weaken her claim or fuel it further with anger. Either way, it's a win-win for viewers.
However, what could be even more interesting is if one dies at the hand of the Night King, he could then resurrect it as a zombiefied ice-dragon, which would make it even tougher for the heroes and truly paint this story as a vicious song of fire and ice. The White Walkers would need some reinforcement from the fiery breaths of Drogon, Viserion or Rhaegal after all.
2 THE NIGHT KING
The Night King has already showed his hand against Jon and apart from the Wights, he's ready to raise the dead anywhere he goes, and the associated hell. With winter finally here, Jon wants the throne war to cease so that everyone can focus on mankind's biggest threat, the White Walkers. We're itching to see him unleash some powers from the fire side of the coin to combat the Night King's cold wizardry.
That's assuming Jon does have mystical abilities after all. Nonetheless, whether it's dragon-glass or the dragons, Jon getting help to kill the Night King would be one of the show's biggest triumphs. This death would finally free all men to resume their war for the Iron Throne. Also, his death at Jon's hand would cement how powerful the young bastard really is and what he was meant to do as a savior.
Cersei's schemes have cost her everything, including all her kids, but what makes her so much more sinister is that sitting on the Iron Throne seems to compensate for this. It's quite sickening to see her ruling as she knows nothing but hate and, since the first episode, she's been all about power, greed and control. When she dies, chances are fans will sing praises to the high heavens like when Joffrey fell.
All the Starks, especially Sansa and Arya, are gunning for her, and so too are Jon and Danaerys. Tyrion hates his sister just as much, and we could see Jaime finally realize she is growing mad like the Mad King Aerys Targaryen whom he had to slay. History could be repeating itself, but what's certain is that with so many haters, Cersei's reign won't be too long.
Thoughts on our picks? Let us know in the comments who you think will die next season!