After 3 days of my husband asking me repeatedly “WHO IS GOING TO DIE IN GAME OF THRONES?!” I finally came up with an answer based on reading a ton of fantasy and also as a writer. Most of this comes from writing characters and arcs. So let’s call it my “character arc/plot/redemption” theory. And the story is based on books.
First off. Who wins the whole thing?
I’d say odds are good Jon Snow wins it all. The series name is A Song of Fire and Ice and it’s become pretty indisputable that it is the ballad of Jon Snow. Half Dragon. Half Wolf. And already brought back by the Lord of Light. I think the answer has been staring at us all along. You could say it’s about Dany & Jon’s love story (I thought so for a long time), but I think knowing what we know now, it points to Jon. Not to mention this is straight-up classic fantasy series started years ago. If it were written nowadays, I’d be willing to argue that it was more likely that the badass girl wins (but if that were the case HELLO ARYA/SANSA–Dany has annoyed me in the books and she annoys me in the show).
Plus it’s way too predictable for Dany to win. Yes yes, I know it’s predictable for Jon to win too–BUT if we look at the genre and tropes–he’s coming from proverbial underdog position. He’s slowly come from being a mistrusted bastard who goes to the Wall, to later become King in the North. If we follow the tropes and the way these things *generally work* in fantasy–he’s almost guaranteed victory. Plus he’s already died and been brought back once. It’d be just downright tedious to kill him again.
Plus Dany has to see Khal Drogo and her son again. She may die nobly, but she’s going to die.
Who else dies?
That’s harder and I start off with who I think will make it. I’d say Bran is definitely safe. If he dies, it’s game over (and again–this is genre fantasy fiction. We can’t have a bleak existentialist ending. It can be dark, but there has to be the good guys winning the long game).
Arya is also likely safe (Probably also Gendry. I am 75% sure they’re going to end up together). Not to mention she’s been chilling with death for too long to die to the Night King. She may not make it out alive. But I have a feeling she will. Plus Nymeria is out there amassing her giant wolf-army. It’d be an enormous plot hole to leave hanging. And while this is show vs. books, they teased it in the show. It matters.
Sansa…I think she’s going to make it to the end. Tyrion too. I recognize he is being put in the crypts, so is Sam. Which seems like SUCH AN OBVIOUSLY BAD IDEA–which means it’d be too obvious for them all to die. Not to mention both of them can fight if they have to and have shone themselves to be extraordinarily brave. So even if the crypts are a bad place to be, they are going to somehow escape. And they better take Gilly with her and little Sam, because that girl has had a HARD life and she needs her HEA too. I make no promises for them, but know that I will be bawling like a baby if Gilly doesn’t make it to the end.
In the end. I think Jon makes Sansa either Warden of the North and/or Hand of the King. She and Tyrion are going to reconcile because they are still married. I can be okay with this end result. And this just hit me as I thought this through but Tyrion has fulfilled a redemption of the rake arc. He was a whoring drunkard who was clever. Family ne’er do well. He’s even got a badass scar. Brooding, wounded and clever. And now he gets the girl he wasn’t *good enough for* earlier on. Let’s just set aside how creepy it was that she was a child bride. This is GOT after all. I mean hell, once you think about it, he’s a romance hero in a nutshell.
Theon is a dead man. I’d almost guarantee he ends up sacrificing himself. His character redemption arc is complete. He’ll do it saving Bran, if not another Stark. But it’s almost glaringly obvious it’ll be to save Bran.
Brienne I am pretty sure is going to die. I hate it. HATE IT. But she’s fulfilled her character arc. Tormund may too. He’s going to follow/avenge the woman he loves/lusts(??) and I think he’s gonna die in the process. The reason I think Brienne has to die all comes down to Jamie. I have been convinced all along that Jamie ends up killing Cersei. Jamie and Brienne have become inextricably linked in honor/duty, and I think once Brienne is gone, Jamie will have lost his last link and he’s freed up to complete his arc. He’ll kill Cersei (hello, mad queen), and will end up dying in the process–probably killed by Euron who will hopefully get offed simultaneously. But I mean Jamie/Cersei dying together fulfill prophesy which has shown itself to be very correct. Plus they came into this world together, they’ll leave it together. It’s almost painfully obvious from character arc/symbolism/prophesy/blah blah. I’d be SHOCKED if this didn’t happen. ** The only other way I could see this playing out is Arya does it wearing Jamie’s face, but now that I’ve seen the interplay of this season I think this is less likely**
Oh and the Hound has to make it long enough to kill Zombie-Mountain. I think he’s going to make it to the end. He’s a survivor. (Husband thinks he’ll end up with Beric’s fire sword–I make no bets, but I’d agree him overcoming the fire to knock off the Zombie-Mountain makes a lot of sense).
I think that’s it for my airport lobby predictions! Now for a cheeseburger and some fries…And again, these are solely from the perspective of someone who writes and thinks a LOT about character arcs. And I cannot wait for tonight’s show!