How to survive ‘Game of Thrones,’ according to science, and Gwendoline Christie warns us all to seek therapy

Science has bad news for the Cersei-haters who want to see her off the Iron Throne.

Science has bad news for the Cersei-haters who want to see her off the Iron Throne.

Slaughter at weddings, crossbow bolts in the privy, skulls crushed by giant hands — we’re well aware by now that no one is safe on Game Of Thrones. While that will likely stay true until the very end, an Australian medical journal has published research on the factors that influence how those left alive have made it so far.

The Guardian reported that researchers conducted a study based on the causes of the 186 deaths the show has racked up in seven seasons. The findings, published in the journal Injury Epidemiology, found that “characters with the greatest chance of survival were prominent characters who had switched allegiance at least once, with lesser determining factors being that both female characters and characters that were highborn tended to live longer.”

The study’s co-author Reidar Lystad, a research fellow with the Australian Institute of Health Innovation at Macquarie University in Sydney, says that even applies to Sansa and Arya Stark, but the article notes that “some fans would object to the suggestion Arya ever truly switched allegiances.”

The article also notes that Cersei Lannister is in the best position to survive the series, given her ironclad devotion to her own House (make of that what you will). Daenerys has not switched allegiances and therefore stands a higher likelihood of dying in season eight, and “Jon Snow switched allegiances to Daenerys in season seven, slightly reducing his chance of dying, although he has already died once. Bran Stark could be said to have switched allegiances to become the Three-Eyed Raven. Jaime Lannister, last seen abandoning his sister/lover and riding north, could also see his chances of survival going up, and Tyrion Lannister was already a turncoat.”

Of those deaths, 63 percent were caused by assault, 24.4 by operations of war, 11.8 by burns, and 4.8 by poisoning. Only one is listed to have died in a “sports and athletics arena” or of a “crushing injury of head” (RIP Oberyn). The longest surviving characters, they found, are Jon Snow and Bran Stark, who have been alive for 57 hours and 15 minutes total. The methodology for the entire study is an intriguing read, so if you have 10 minutes to spare, I’d recommend reading the whole article.

Elsewhere on the internet, Gwendoline Christie (Brienne) advised us of something that we’ve long suspected: that we’re all “going to need therapy” after the series ends.

Christie talked with E! News at the recent premiere of her new film, Welcome to Marwen, telling E’s Erin Lim that “I think just the show ending is going to send all of the world into professional help.”

“I think it’s going to make me incredibly emotional,” she said. “We’re all emotional about the fact that this is the end, and this is the end of something incredibly significant for all of us, and it’s been a truly incredible thing to be a part of.”

108 responses

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    1. “survive-game-thrones-according-science”

      Be a popular character. Past season 4-5, only “bad guys” die, or extremely minor “good guys”.

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    2. I’m confused. How is Cersei expected to survive the series based on the fact that she hasn’t switched alliances, but neither has Dany but she’s expected to die? Am I reading it wrong?

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    3. There’s a whole mess of stuff in there that I don’t care to read through and didn’t see what I looked for immediately… so… with a bit of rambling…
      Are they considering Sansa to have changed main allegiance to Lannister and back to Stark? That is probably somewhat accurate. Are they suggesting Arya changed to FM and back? Does it count the leader of the allegiance dying which essentially forces the character to choose another, perhaps not wholeheartedly? What about simply allying?
      I guess my point is if allegiance is considered changed or switched for some of these cases, why can’t Daenerys be considered to have “sort of” switched to the Dothraki when she became Drogo’s khaleesi?

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    4. Do researchers really have nothing better to do? They need to figure out how fictional characters in a fictional tv show have survived up until this point when the explanation is as simple as ‘because the showrunners wanted them to’?

      And don’t worry Gwen, some of us won’t need tissues. Much less therapy.

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    5. trarecar,

      No you’re not. This is literally what the study says “After adjusting for other factors, whether or not a character had switched allegiance during the show and how prominently a character featured in the show were revealed to be independent predictors of death.”

      The Turncloak feature is apparently an independent risk prediction so….I’d you manipulate these into a yes/ no situation the risk factor of death increases/decreases (that’s what I took from it).

      It’s funny actually that someone did that. Someone is a big fan. 🙂

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    6. trarecar,

      Forgot to say It’s a modeling on the sample of the show deaths and looks like the ones who survived are loyal to whatever they believed in from the beginning (aka less characters who switched allegiances died). I am not sure though how reliable that is because some big characters who were always loyal to their Fam died: Cat, Ned, Tywin etc. maybe they meant switched allegiances in anything or on any issue, not necessary to their house. Then again maybe it is the bulk of the betrayal that brought so many deaths so obviously betraying anything will be a high risk factor of death.

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    7. I am taking this study to be a “spoof” “holiday cheer” study.
      Every year a few universities/research teams produce a light-hearted study to generate humour.

      A few weeks ago I listened to a lovely interview about a study undertaken by a bunch of paediatric doctors/researchers on the factors impacting the time it takes for a Leggo piece to go thru the human body. All the researchers swallowed a piece of Leggo and had to search their solid waste (yes! I mean from their bodies!) until the Leggo emerged. The study reported factors affecting speed and the condition of the Leggo. Like size of the researcher, diet, nature of the waste etc. They applied some statistical/econometric analysis ( a little messy of course) and wrote a report. It was funny. They do something like this every year. All in good fun!

      As for Gwen and therapy – The writing on GOT has become so iffy, I would recommend therapy for the writers, producer and actors. We will be fine – even more so if HBO refunds our subscriptions.

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    8. ‘characters with the greatest chance of survival were prominent characters who had switched allegiance at least once… female characters… highborn… tended to live longer.’

      Poor Margaery. Met all the criteria and still didn’t make it.

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    9. Ten Bears,

      Voluntarily, yes!

      In the service of science.

      Rather hilariously, one of the Leggos was never seen again. Of course, they interviewed this guy. He said he felt fine even though months had gone by.

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    10. Off topic, but doesn’t the ¯_(ツ)_/¯ shrug look an awful lot like Varys when he’s feigning innocence?

      Just a silly thought.

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    11. Some off-topic stuff, guys. I started making some sort of Memory Lane videos for GoT episodes on my YouTube channel as Ive been rewatching the show. I currently did it for only one episode but I expect it to make it for others as well in near future. So if you’re interested, feel free to check the videos. There’s a link to first episode below and I’ll make a forum thread as well where I’ll post the links to future videos when I make them.

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    12. Carole H,

      I’ve found it helpful to resign myself in advance to the deaths of characters who’ve already been given a reprieve from death and a second chance at life, and therefore are on “borrowed time” anyway. All I ask for is that they go out in a blaze of glory, or that there’s some kind of poetic justice in their deaths.

      Here’s my preliminary “List of Names”

      1. Jon Snow – Already resurrected and doesn’t want to be brought back again if he dies. Plot armor can’t last forever. Mr. “Self-Sacrifice for the Greater Good” could very well give his life voluntarily in S8. That includes my tinfoil prediction that he will undergo the Benjen-style, shard-to-the-heart treatment.

      2. Sandor Clegane aka The Last Hero
      “You can still help a lot more than you’ve harmed, Clegane. It’s not too late for you.” – B. Dondarrion S6e8
      I wanna see Sandor conquer his fear of fire to rescue his Little Bird and give his life to save the Wolf Girl and the rest of humanity – and deliver a kickass dying speech to the sobbing young women, assuring them he can now die with “at least one happy memory.” Oh, and he’s also gotta include in his speech the advice: “Remember where the heart is.”

      3. Tyrion Lannister – He was after all, sentenced to death once and skated out of it – only to murder his dad and ex-girlfriend. He successfully reined in Dany’s “worst impulses” at the beginning of S6e9, Battle of the Bastards, when Dany wanted to incinerate the Masters’ armies, navy – and cities, including innocent civilians. But Dany’s no longer heeding Tyrion’s advice. See Tarly barbecue. She’s questioned whether he’s conflicted (i.e., the enemy = “your family”). He already told Cersei the only difference between Dany and Cersei is that Dany chose advisors to rein in her worst impulses. Without those advisors, Tyrion may no longer “believe” in Dany, and get roasted along with Varys.

      4. Beric Dondarrion. He’s already been resurrected six times. If he escaped death when the Wall crumbled that’d make seven. As the dying farmer in S4e7 acknowledged to Sandor and Arya: “Time to go.”

      5. Cersei Lannister. She escaped a certain death sentence at the High Sparrow’s rigged “trial” before seven of his flunkies by blowing up the High Hypocrite and everyone else in the courtroom. She’s got a date with destiny at the hands of Aegon “the Valonqar” Targaryen in S8.

      6. Jorah Mormont. One day away from taking his own life to avoid being sent off to the Stone Men in Old Valyria, when Samwell Tarly, M.D. administers a miracle cure. Then, almost immediately after leaving the hospital and barely having a chance to say “Khaleesi! I’m back!”, he volunteers for the stupid Wight Hunt and barely escapes. Jorah was already more than thrilled to get slaughtered in the Fighting Pits just to impress Dany – and was a split second away from getting impaled before the third guy stabbed Jorah’s would-be killer in the back.
      And of course, all along Jorah has been a fugitive from justice – and the death sentence imposed by the Warden of the North for selling poachers into slavery.
      Farewell, Jorah the Andal.

      7. Theon Greyjoy. Exited stage left (overboard) instead of trying to save his sister – and getting killed by Euron. Theon himself admits his betrayal of the Starks was unforgivable. He would’ve been killed in S6e2 but for Brienne & Pod. He’s slated to die a heroic, redemptive death while coming to the aid of Team Stark.

      8. Jaime Lannister. I thought kingslaying carried a mandatory death sentence. I know his motives were noble and he got pardoned by Robert, but still…
      Oh, and those scenes of the Kingsguard White Book and the blank space under Jaime’s page suggest he’s got some “great deeds” for someone to write about after he gives his life keeping his oath in S8. [Sorry, Brienne of F*cking Tarth. But I do hope you get to spend a little time “consummating” your romance with Ser Jaime before he dies in your arms.]

      Did I forget anyone?

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    13. Ten Bears: Did I forget anyone?

      Daenerys Targaryen – walked through the flames of a funeral pyre and made it out on the other end with 3 dragons and a sense of self-entitlement the likes of which the world has never seen 😉

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    14. There are others that I suppose could count too, but aren’t quite as persuasive:

      Davos – Pretty much the only person who survived a wildfire explosion and lived to tell the tale.

      Arya – Got stabbed in the stomach with a nice twist at the end for good measure only to be magically healed by soup. She also got out of the House of B&W with her life despite the fact that she pretty much failed her training. Killing the waif was the extra credit assignment that she needed to pass the class I guess.

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    15. Mango,

      I concede. Daenerys “The Mad King’s Daughter” Targaryen should be #9 on my List of Names. Consider it amended.

      Twice now she’s walked through a fire and emerged “unburnt.” Perhaps she’ll blithely try it again and not be so lucky. After all, as they say, “the third time’s the charm.”

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    16. Mango,

      I’m compelled to add that my quip about she show’s writers suffering from “Leggo blockage” only applies to a small fraction of some of the subplots, e.g., S7 Sansa-Arya-FecalFlinger Winterfell story line, and the S7e6 Wight Hunt. I thought the rest of the writing has been consistently good. For example, the S7e1 Beric-Sandor theological discussion was well-done and well-acted.

      I have no doubt that if the show writers had 7-8 years between seasons to polish their scripts, all of the alleged “plot holes” and inconsistencies would be ironed out; and they wouldn’t have to rely on Bronn and other characters to utter “cock” for a cheap laugh. (I didn’t laugh.)

      As it is, I give the showrunners enormous credit for cranking out scripts and producing episodes on time and within budget without source material. When they undertook this project 9-10 years ago, I doubt they ever contemplated they’d pass the books and have to come up with story lines and dialogue on their own, even if GRRM imparted to them the ultimate destinations of the characters and story lines.

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    17. Out of curiosity, to the group at large, who is on your die/survive lists? Not speaking idealistically over who we would like to die or survive, but who we are predicting. Mine keep changing, but as it stands, this is what they look like:

      Die:
      Cersei
      Jaime
      Theon
      Varys
      Mel
      Beric
      Tormund
      Sandor
      The mountain
      Euron
      The dragons
      The wolves
      The NK
      Edd
      Greyworm
      Qyburn

      Survive:
      Arya
      Sansa
      Sam
      Gilly
      Bran (though it’s questionable whether he’s still Bran at this point)
      Tyrion
      Yara
      Jon/Dany (I am still unsure on them, I am a lot less sure they will survive than the others, but at the moment I reckon they’ll make it through – mainly because they have had 7 seasons – and 5 books – worth of character development priming them to rule – it would seem a bit like a betrayal of the plot not to follow through)
      Missandei
      Davos
      Gendry
      Bronn

      I think that’s everybody, though I’m prepared to hand my head in shame if I left anyone important out.

      What are your lists like?

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    18. Ten Bears,

      Okie-dokie.

      I will stand down on Arya. For now, credit that recovery to remarkable genetic constitution, soup and the knife miraculously missing all essential parts. Waif sucks!

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    19. Che,

      Your list actually mirrors mine pretty closely, except I have both Jon and Dany dying in the end. I also have Bronn dying, but I think he’s someone who could end up living too.

      I can envision a scenario where Jon and Dany both die and one where they both live. I just think it would be such a basic ending if Jon and Dany lived to rule Westeros together, and I have a feeling the ending to GoT won’t be basic. I think they’re both on borrowed time. if anyone of the two survives I would think it has to be Dany, so she can end up getting what she wants in the end, but asking herself if it was really worth it.

      It reminds me of Daario’s quote to Dany:

      “You’ll get that throne you want so badly, I’m sure of it. I hope it brings you happiness”

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    20. Ten Bears,

      Yes, some parts of the writing are brilliant! Some parts clearly suffer from a lack of books and the related time to refine the work. D&D have made some changes that enhanced what GRRM originally put together.

      I also think that great acting (Tywin, Joffrey, Olleana, Roose, Ramsey, Frey, Osha, Mel, Jeor, Benjen, Edd) cover up some of the flaws etc. that were in the book. (I named some of the characters that do not get enough credit for the quality we have enjoyed. ) Now with thinner material and a less experienced cast, more sins are obvious.

      Nothing can explain the wight hunt however.

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    21. Mango,

      I miss the presence of Tywin on the show. He was an ass, but I really enjoyed him as a “bad guy”.

      Same with Joffrey. He was such an easy character to hate. I miss seeing Tyrion bitch slap him around. I need that version of Tyrion to come back.

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    22. Mr Derp,

      Blasphemy, I tell you, blasphemy! No way Arya is on the List of Names.

      Getting “stabbed in the stomach with a nice twist at the end for good measure” was a dubious directorial decision intended to ramp up the “drama”, but left the audience flummoxed. The director has admitted he increased the severity of the stabbing to manipulate the audience into thinking Arya might actually die, just like he decided to turn Arya into an unarmed oblivious idiot walking around Braavos in broad daylight – even though she knew the FM had likely put a hit on her. (Ambling about like a clueless tourist made no sense after the last episode concluded with Arya ensconced in her hideaway, honing Needle.)

      I am convinced Lady Crane’s “magic soup” was only intended to be an antibiotic to treat a superficial wound – not to heal perforated bowels or septic shock. (The mortally wounded farmer Arya and Sandor met in S4e7 suffered a similar gut wound, and as trauma specialist Sandor Clegane, M.D. correctly diagnosed: “That’s not going to get better.” Roose Bolton dropped dead pretty quickly from a stab wound to his torso.)

      I don’t think the showrunners have the luxury of re-shooting entire scenes if a director’s interpretation of the script is out of whack. I attribute the multiple stabs by the Waif with a “nice twist at the end for good measure” to be an anomalous scene that couldn’t be re-shot to align it with the way it was scripted.

      So no, Arya is not on the List of Names.

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    23. Mr Derp,

      I am with you on that one. I swing regularly between them dying or surviving. I think it’s likely they’ll experience the same fate, as their stories are mirrors to one another, but if only one is to survive, my money is on Jon, purely because I feel the R+L=J set-up surely ought to serve more purpose than just to cause drama between Dany and Jon at the end game. You don’t hide a secret king in an opus if you don’t plan to use him – at least, that’s my logic. I think that GOT will not end in a classically happy-ending scenario, but I also feel that the ending isn’t going to be enormously surprising (someone else rising to the throne that hasn’t had any development to get there or even the popular abolishing the throne altogether and establishing a variant on democracy). I feel one of them ought to survive, but I think you’re right, it won’t be both.

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    24. Che: What are your lists like?

      That’s pretty much how I’d also list them, with similar question marks. It’s a pretty reasonable guess where we stand right now. I’d move Bronn to the casualty list if he doesn’t follow Jaime out of KL, which he should do. Bran is a weird one because we have to question if he can or if we’d want him to live on as he is, an all-seeing shell of a person.

      Jon & Daenerys teeter on the fulcrum. My belief is that they’re the equal main, important characters of ASoIaF so it’s hard for me to guess if both or which could die. I’d prefer they both live.

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    25. Che,

      i’m basically in agreement with your excellent list. You overlooked Jorah and Podrick, both of whom I would regrettably put in the ‘Die’ section, and Brienne, who IMO will survive. I’d add Robin Arryn, Lyanna Mormont, Nymeria, Hot Pie, and everyone left alive in Essos to the ‘Live’ list. Your analysis of Jon & Dany seems spot-on.

      Mango:
      Ten Bears,

      Okie-dokie.

      I will stand down on Arya. For now, credit that recovery to remarkable genetic constitution, soup and the knife miraculously missing all essential parts. Waif sucks!

      I’m not trying to defend that canal incident; I agree with you both. But his week I was taking people through the museum I work in and visitors chatted at length about a 19th century Venetian scene with a mum bathing her bairn in a canal! They were appalled that she would expose her young lad to murky water. Afterwards, on the Web I also found a few other Venice paintings and early 20th century photos with people swimming in canals. It makes sense–nobody knew about germs or had antibiotics back then–but apparently they survive . People survived all sorts of unsanitary conditions we moderns would not. And as two GoT characters say, Starks are hard to kill. That implies good genes and good immune systems. Arya also had the recourse to the healing well, which she apparently used after killing the Waif.

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    26. Just thinking about all these characters we expect to bite it is enough already to understand Gwen thinking we’ll need therapy. Nearly all of them have been on the show for most of its run. How do they snuff out a good portion of them all at once and also provide ‘weight’ to each individual death? I’m glad I’m not writing the WotW Curtain Calls… Maybe they should all be written in advance so a handful don’t need to be done in a few days. 😉

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    27. Clob: I’d prefer they both live.

      Me too, wholeheartedly! Jon is one of my favourite characters, if not my absolute favourite, and though until quite recently, I was pretty ambivalent towards Dany, she has really grown on me over the last few seasons. I was rewatching Beyond the Wall and the Dragon and the Wolf last night and it reminded me that, actually, I do really love her character and it would be very painful to watch her die.

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    28. Stark Raven’ Rad,

      Argh! I can’t believe I forgot such central characters. I will dutifully hang my head in shame as promised. I fear you are correct that both will perish. I imagine Brienne will die with Jaime fighting side-by-side or in each others’ arms during the battle with the army of the dead. And Jorah will undoubtedly sacrifice himself for Dany.

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    29. I have Brienne on the Live side. I think the “not a knight” will make it; bloody, beaten and heartbroken. Maybe I just want her to because I need her last scene to be writing all of Jaime’s great deeds in The Book of the Brothers/White Book.

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    30. Mango,

      “Nothing can explain the wight hunt however.”

      …………..
      No, it can’t, especially after the massacre Jon witnessed at Hardhome. (As he told Lyanna Mormont: “Your uncle fought them at the Fist of the First Men. I fought them at Hardhome. We both lost.”)

      At the very least, they could have had some aerial reconnaissance, e.g., Bran drones (warged ravens) or a high-altitude dragon + Dany.

      But… a dozen guys. On foot. No horses. Freezing cold. Marching off blindly to confront 100,000 WWs and zombies just to try to capture one. What could possibly go wrong?

      That episode needed the Voice of Reason, aka Edd. (Like at Hardhome, when he yelled to Jon: “F*ck the glass!!! We’re gonna die here!”) As soon as Toby – I mean that wight polar bear – attacked, Edd would’ve screamed “F*ck the wight! Let’s get the f*ck out of here! Now!”

      Sorry. Enough’s been written about the wight hunt already (and the odd Arya-less banter that preceded it). No need to dredge it up again.

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    31. Mr Derp:
      Ten Bears,

      Uh huh, sure.Denial is the first stage of grief, TB 😉

      I still haven’t gotten over the Miami Hurricanes not getting into the end zone with a 1st and goal at the Penn State 3-yard line with the National Championship on the line in the closing minutes of the 1987 Fiesta Bowl. And that was 22 years ago.

      If Arya dies… No. It can’t happen. I won’t get over it. And besides, the syndication value of GoT will drop to $0.00.

      #LastWomanStanding
      #NotToday
      👸🏻

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    32. Ten Bears: If Arya dies… No. It can’t happen. I won’t get over it. And besides, the syndication value of GoT will drop to $0.00.

      #LastWomanStanding
      #NotToday
      👸🏻

      The second stage of grief is anger.

      Ten Bears: I still haven’t gotten over the Miami Hurricanes not getting into the end zone with a 1st and goal at the Penn State 3-yard line with the National Championship on the line in the closing minutes of the 1987 Fiesta Bowl. And that was 22 years ago.

      32 years ago, actually 😉

      I feel your pain. I still can’t get over the Patriots losing SB 42 to ruin their perfect season and that was only 11 years ago. I’m sure Ill still feel the same way when it’s been 32 years too.

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    33. Che,

      I too think Jon will survive, but he won’t be a happy camper. [Paraphrasing] Maester Aemon told him: “You won’t find much joy in your command.” And then in S7, discussing their mutual resurrections for unknown purposes, Beric told him: “We won’t find much joy while we’re here.”

      Besides, it’d be fitting if his fate is to live out his days brooding over why he didn’t die.

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    34. Mr Derp,

      I guess Seattle Seahawks fans share my pain too. They had a first and goal in the Super Bowl against the Patriots a couple of years (?) ago when the QB threw an interception. Just like Vinny Testaverde in the ’87 Fiesta Bowl.

      Oh wait… if you’re a Patriots fan, I guess you’re not too thrilled about the outcome of their last game in Miami. (I don’t watch sports anymore, but the next day read about the ridiculous million-to-one double-lateral TD by the Dolphins on the last play.)

      That’s why I can’t get emotionally invested in sports teams anymore. It’s a recipe for heartbreak.

      Same thing with this show. You follow characters for 8-9 years, and in some instances watch them grow up from little kids to young adults before your very eyes. I cannot fathom that cute little mischievous girl flinging dessert at her sister in S1e1 winding up getting killed.

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    35. Che,

      “Bran (though it’s questionable whether he’s still Bran at this point)”

      I too wonder if Bran is even eligible for the “Live” list. As Meera told him: “You died in that cave.”

      He’s like RoboCop: A cyborg with a reprogrammed brain, with only fragments of his former self.

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    36. ASNAWP isn’t going to die. No chance. Okay, a very tiny chance, but close to no chance.

      I can’t commiserate a Patriots fan being upset with a Super Bowl loss. Sorry. 🙂 I mean, when they win several and none of the division teams can challenge them for a decade and a half… Yeah, there are worse teams to cheer for. 😉

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    37. I imagine, NK occupies Bran, the remains of his personality and his soul, of his body – the 3ER, whom he is now. NK and Bran become a personal union – and Arya is to kill him/them with the dagger.
      Bran handed this dagger over to her with good reason: She’s the only one, who would be able to do that. He knows, what is coming for him.
      Bran died the first time, after Jamie threw him out of the window (his old life and his future dreams ended), the second time in the cave (his feelings, his longings ended), the third and thus the last time he will die under the magical tree (what do You call it in English?).
      And the magic dies too.

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    38. Ten Bears,

      I can’t imagine anything worse for Jon than Dany dying (presuming their boat relations was a prelude to a meaningful and deep connection rather than a quick interlude that is about to be bust open by his Targ bombshell). The woman he loves dies but makes him promise to take the throne and rule in her place? There is no way Jon could deal with that and ever be happy again. I actually see this as one of the few ways Jon would take the throne too, if the chance arose.

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    39. Clob,

      Powerful imagery and a wonderful idea, but I do wonder how much of the Red Keep will remain intact throughout the war and whether that book will survive.

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    40. … and we will see lost people in lost places, a crude mixture of “good” and “bad”:
      Arya
      Jon
      Sansa
      Hound
      Cercei
      Jamie (Brienne will die in Jamie’s arms)
      Tyrion
      … some secondary charakters…
      but the main above are damned to get along with each other or not or part – Westeros is a big continent.
      At the end we must leave them standing there in their lost places and we will never know, how their lifes go on.

      Bitter.
      But sweet.

      —> rushes out —>

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    41. Che,

      In a comment a while back, I outlined a farcical scenario of Jon as a sleep-deprived single father taking care of his baby daughter to honor a promise he made to dying Dany.

      Now I’m wondering if it won’t be so far-fetched after all…

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    42. It’s difficult to explain in an foreign language, Ten Bears. I imagine a kind of Armageddon, great very last battle in several places, north, south, east, west – and apocalypse – everything, landscapes, human dwellings, everything wasted and destroyed, nearly nothing intact left.
      This moment there was a great battle, undead and humans, dragons, direwolfs, red priests, individuals touched by magic – then NK assimilates Bran/3ER… one moment… No-One realizes… stabs the dagger… pffffff.
      And there they stand, in the midst of destruction, everyone on his/her place, north, south, east, west – when the wind blows.

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    43. Che,

      Good list I think.

      However, I still think Dany will die and Jon sit (reluctantly) on the throne, partly based on the vision in House of the Undying with snow on the Iron Throne and Dany being close to it but then meet Drogo and Rhaego (in the night lands I presume).

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    44. Ten Bears,

      I remember that and enjoyed it. Love your scenarios. There’s no way Jon would be raising a baby alone though, despite the fact that I doubt he’d ever risk Love again if he lost both women he loved. Aunty Arya, Aunty Sansa, uncle Davos and possibly uncle Tyrion would definitely step up to the plate. I wonder how Jon would feel to lose Dany but gain a child that he never thought he’d have. That would be bittersweet right there.

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    45. Che,

      The semi-serious point was that Dany (and to some extent Jon) knows what it was like to grow up without parents; and Dany – echoing Lyanna Stark – would beg Jon: “Promise me. Promise me you’ll take care of her.” Of course, he would not have to do it alone, but he’d have to be a constant, full-time dad and not an absentee father.

      Jon, after learning his mother got knocked up by his real father, who left her alone and promptly got himself killed in battle, might be reluctant to delegate parental obligations while he continues his swashbuckling. The “Nedness” in Jon would honor that promise to Dany.

      …And that’s where the farcical part comes in. Jon Snow, single father, raising a baby daughter who inherited many of Dany’s traits (e.g., bend the knee or I’ll get cranky).

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    46. cos alpha,

      I agree that your scenario sounds like it may happen. I think the Living will defeat the Dead about half-way through the season, after which the humans have to decide what to do. They can’t keep squabbling, because there won’t be enough of them left alive.

      I don’t believe a House of Commons will rule Westeros, but the vast depopulation means government will re-start from some limited foundation. The feudal system will be one casualty: most of the Great Houses are already gone at the end of S7, and the King in the North ordered the creation of a militia there before he departed. Feudalism simply cannot survive when the population is armed and battle-tested; that population is no longer subjects; they are citizens, and will have their rights as such.

      I also believe the magic will go away. As another commenter put it, the magical forces will blast each other out of existence in a mutually-assured destruction. With magic gone, a true naturalistic world-view can take hold at the Citadel (and in other places). This is also a requirement for the future development of enlightened government.

      Finally, I see Arya deciding to see what’s “West of Westeros” on foot, going Beyond (where) The Wall (once was) on foot across a north-west passage to the unknown. That might make for a great spin-off series. (Someone else would have to take on the role, if Maisie Williams maintains she’s done with it.)

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    47. I think, we are to leave the story – or the story leaves us – at the point, when the remaining characters recognize, that everything is over now, battle and civilistion as they knew it, infrastructure etc., and have to start very new in any way.
      But we will not find out (this time), how they will go on.

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    48. Enjoying all the endgame scenarios being put forth here… I have long been a proponent of the idea of Branakin scenario… (Bran gone bad).

      cos alpha,

      I have never thought of it in these terms, but you may very well be onto something with the NK/Bran union. However, the gun that was the Valaryian dagger may have already been fired when Arya sliced open LF’s throat. I do like your ideas here though.

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    49. Sister Kisser, Arya could have done it with any tool, kitchen-knife, spoon or chickenbone. No need to hand her a Valyrian dagger for cutting of LF’s throat ;o)

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    50. Mr Derp,

      Ten Bears,

      Growing up in Seattle, I have always been a Hawks fan- and I indeed share in the painful memories of shitty end-of-game losses. It’s funny, I remember the Hurricanes loss at the Fiesta bowl; though I was a kid- I was a product of a mixed household with alliances between Huskies, Cougars, and Fighting Irish. At that point, Florida had been the furthest I had traveled from home, and as a seven year old attempting to form my own place in the world, I looked to the Hurricanes as “my team”. It only lasted a couple years I suppose, but I remember that loss well.

      Fast forward to Superbowl 49. Coming off a SB win the year before, we were ready for round two. On the date written 2/1 (in America), on second down and one, with 21 seconds on the clock, Russell Wilson, number 3, fires off his 21st pass attempt, only to be intercepted by Malcolm Butler, number 21. (none of that is weird at all, right?) WHY throw the ball when you have a beast?! It was crushing. A cloud moved in over Seattle that took years to dissipate. Ultimately, sports mean nothing in life for most people, and I generally take them as such. But, I have definitely seen the power it can have over “group consciousness”. I watched the town (the entire NW?) go from elation to misery all because of a SB win followed by a SB loss.

      And of course, it was the Patriots. Mr. Derp, have you seen or heard the Sheil Kapadia prediction for SB 52? Two days before the game, he predicted, on the Birds with Friends podcast out of Philly, EXACTLY how the game would end. Down to the second Brady would take the snap, the two players involved in the pass rush, and the sack fumble that would seal the deal. It’s pretty crazy, definitely worth a quick google search. You can easily find and hear the audio from the podcast. He’s an espn writer that covered the Hawks before moving to Philly to cover sports before the start of last season. The numbers involved with that game are out of control. Honestly, it reminded me of the Dark Mark over the Quidditch world cup… but that is another layer to the story altogether.

      Anyway, back to the regularly scheduled programming….

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    51. cos alpha,

      Oh, I agree. But the poetry in the dagger being used on LF is the obvious fact that it was the same dagger used in the assignation attempt on Bran (which we now know was ordered by LF himself). That actually tipped me off immediately… that Arya would be the one to kill LF. That she now has Valyrian steel for the upcoming war is a bonus. I’m not ready to take that as foreshadowing of her killing Bran with it, because that foreshadowing has already been used.

      That said, I won’t be surprised if you’re right. It is a compelling idea, for sure.

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    52. Sister Kisser,

      Wait. Do we “now know” that the assassination attempt on Bran “was ordered by Littlefinger himself?”

      That whole question of who was behind the attempted assassination was kind of wonky – along with to whom the dagger “belonged.” To me, it was never made clear or even implied that LF hired the catspaw assassin and gave him the dagger.

      Aside from the geographical and chronological impossibility of LF (in KL) learning about Bran’s fall, and then giving the dagger to an assassin to travel to WF in time for the assassination attempt, I thought book readers surmised that Joffrey was behind it. On the show, the inference was that Cersei or Jaime may have arranged it in case Bran regained consciousness and revealed that he’d seen Jaime fornicating with Cersei, and that Jaime had pushed him off the window ledge. (Cat had found a long blonde hair inside the tower room before setting off on her mission to KL.)

      In S1, LF told Cat the knife had belonged to him but he had lost it in a bet to Tyrion Lannister. As Tyrion later argued to Cat, only an idiot would give his own [readily identifiable] weapon to a hired assassin to use. (I think someone has mentioned that in the books, LF told Cat he’d lost the dagger to Tyrion by betting on Jaime in a jousting match or something, but Tyrion argued he never bets against Jaime.)

      In S7e4, when LF gave Bran the dagger as a gift, LF expressly denied to Bran knowing who the dagger belonged to:

      Bran: “Do you know who this belonged to?”

      LF: “No. That very question was what started the War of the Five Kings.”

      But that unequivocal denial never came up at LF’s “trial.” Instead, as Arya recounted, LF had “told our mother the knife belonged to Tyrion Lannister, but that was another one of your lies. It was yours.” Bran never mentioned that LF had expressly denied knowing to whom it belonged. (Why didn’t LF just repeat to Bran his initial lie that the dagger had once belonged to him but Tyrion had won it from him in a bet?)

      Also, LF’s initial lie to Catelyn was what prompted her to accuse and arrest Tyrion in a crowded roomful of people at an inn full of Tully/Stark bannermen and bring Tyrion to the Vale for trial on attempted murder charges. So, her family and the public at large would have to have known LF had told Cat the assassin’s knife belonged to Tyrion. Why then would LF deny knowing to whom the dagger belonged when talking with Bran in S7?

      Another thing: Isn’t it basic Homicide 101 that if you’ve conspired to kill someone, you ditch the attempted murder weapon by tossing it off a bridge or throwing it into a lake? You don’t bring it back to the scene of the crime. You don’t give it to the intended victim. And you don’t give conflicting stories about its provenance.

      Okay, so LF lied in order to frame Tyrion and pit the Starks against the Lannisters – but that didn’t mean LF orchestrated the assassination attempt. I just can’t figure out why he was waving it around at WF, presenting it as a gift to Bran, and telling a different, easily provable lie to Bran that conflicted with his original lie.

      Did LF become that stupid by S7? Or did I?

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    53. *Scientist stands at the top of a long flight of stairs, holding a handful of papers with characters’ names written on them*

      *flings papers forward into the air*

      *picks paper that has landed on every second step as “gonna die”*

      *SCIENCE!!!!*

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    54. Ten Bears,

      I yield. It has been many years since I read the books, and I only watched season 7 once, as it aired, so I am not as in the trenches with the minutia as I once was.

      I suppose it has not ever been explicitly confirmed that LF- or anyone specifically- ordered the hit, but what I took from the scenes in S7 where LF gifted the knife to Bran while denying ownership, where Bran gave it to his sister while the three Starks spoke under the Weirwood tree, and then later, to the trial- is that we are supposed to accept that somewhere along the way, this assassination attempt was born of LF’s web of lies, and was somehow a part of his plans to fuck the great houses of Westeros by inducing chaos, division, and war among them. I think we are supposed to accept that Bran has seen through LF’s lies, and that the Starks are all now on board with the conclusion that LF must die for the chaos he is responsible for having created.

      Now, whether or not he ordered the hit… or just tried to manipulate the event to his own ends…. yeah, ok. We may never get a satisfactory resolution here. Maybe it really was Joffrey who stole the knife from his father, and ordered the assassination. But, why? I don’t see a clear motive, other than cruelty or petty revenge, which just seems insufficient. And how? Could Joffrey concoct such a plan, and follow through with the order; to light a fire in WF and use the distraction to do the deed? I dunno. It would seem that Cersei had the clearer motive, and she also had access to Robert’s weapons.

      I don’t think S7 LF has suddenly gone stupid, but he knows that chaos opens doors that are otherwise more securely shut. I think in gifting the weapon to Bran, he thought he was buying his way into his favor. He obviously had no clue about Bran’s hyper-awareness. I don’t think you’re stupid, either. You obviously have a handle on the story. Perhaps the way the show has played this out can be chalked up to lazy writing? Perhaps, in the books, it’s intended to be one of those super-consequential events wherein the details surrounding it may remain a part of a murky history involving the musings of a number of unreliable sources.

      I apologize for imposing my assumptions on the earlier comment- I should have thought through it more comprehensively. I still think the gun-LF’s gift to Bran- was fired already, with Arya’s execution of justice.

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    55. I still think the gun-LF’s gift to Bran- was fired already, with Arya’s execution of justice.

      … and isn’t the gift to Arya perhaps another hanging gun?

      I hope, we will see.

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    56. cos alpha: … and isn’t the gift to Arya perhaps another hanging gun?

      I hope, we will see.

      ___________
      I agree. The VS dagger is a “gun” that’s still hanging, yet to be fired.

      As you wrote earlier (12/15/18, 5:22 pm): “Arya could have done it with any tool, kitchen-knife, spoon or chickenbone. No need to hand her a Valyrian dagger for cutting of LF’s throat.” Also, she could’ve used Needle to poke him full of holes, or just impale him, Rorge-style.

      [I’m not sure if the casual way in which Arya strolled over, slashed LF’s throat, and walked away as if she were clicking “Delete” with a mouse or turning on the dishwasher, was intended to show that Arya wasn’t deriving pleasure out of killing, as some have suggested she exhibited in the past. To me, LF got off way too easy. As Sandor would’ve said: “All over in an instant. Where’s the punishment in that?(Sandor S6e8)]

      Another thing: A picture of that VS dagger was conspicuously shown on a page of the old Citadel book Sam and Gilly were leafing through, right before Sam found the page with the map showing the Dragonglass deposit on Dragonstone.

      The dagger had to have more significance than just a means to execute LF. I actually thought Robyn Arryn should’ve been the one to execute LF, but that’s another story….

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    57. Oh no, Ten Bears, not with Needle!
      Needle is for a better purpose than killing LF!
      Needle outgrew Rorge-style etc as Arya outgrew simple revenge.

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    58. • I think of the deaths in terms MY CURRENT “WORK IN PROGRESS” VIEW of the structure of the story and my fears of how HBO & GRRM & D&D could end GOT. Clearly, I could wrong on both.
      • The end that I fear will reflect two influences: (i) GRRM’s fascination with the Targs; (ii) HBO needing a loyal audience for the prequel. With these in mind, I expect a Hollywood blockbuster trash end. This has Jon, Daenerys and baby happily ruling Westeros. Dragons and the Starks alive. It does not matter who else is dead – NK, Lannister kids, many of the neutrals dead. Noble Brienne in servitude for life. This is the most likely end. End of post!!!!!
      • As for a GOT ending aligned with how I structure of the story, in my view you have core magic contingent and the core human political contingent. The magic characters will exit and the humans carry on even if in a post-apocalyptic world. There may NOT be large number of deaths in either group. Exit by the magic characters may be loss of magic skills and property (like dragons) or withdrawal from society or move elsewhere to aid others facing “Others.”
      • Jaime and Jon have parallel stories. Jon swore to the night watch and protects Westeros against the Others outside the wall, those in the magical realm. Jaime swore to the kingsguard and protects the Westeros from those inside the political realm. By working together both will fulfill their destiny.
      • Four characters (Jon, Daenerys, Bran, Arya) and NK are magical and their storylines are very personal and separate from the Westeros’ society. These four are bonded by loyalty oaths and love. In fact, up to Season 7, the core of GOT as a TV series would be the same on the political side if these 4 were excised from the story. These 4 are to varied extents tailor-made to fight NK. I think Jon is re-animated as fire wight as he is Lightbringer and his role is to bring Daenerys’ dragons to the fight against the Others with him. Her role (as with Targs) was never to rule Westeros; it was to fight the Others. Her powers, her dragons, etc. are probably all gifts from the Fire Gods to fight the encroaching Ice. Jon and Daenerys are special purpose mechanisms and when their work is done, they exit. I do not know how Bran and Arya will exit – may be just loss of powers.
      • Four characters (Jaime, Tyrion, Sansa, Brienne) are the human/political elements. These four are also bonded by loyalty oaths and love. Their storylines contain the core of GOT and nearly all the other characters dead or alive. If up to Season 7 you took a director’s cut of scenes either Jaime or Tyrion are in or are observing then you have much of the entire story. If you add Sansa and Brienne then you get nearly the entire story – Stannis’s death, Renly, Ramsey, Robin etc. You know about the Red Wedding because Joffy told Tyrion etc. At the end, these 4 guys live (or nearly all live) and carry on under tough conditions. Leadership falls to any combination of the 4. Sansa will be important. Just in a conversation last week, I was thinking that the Brienne and Jaime road trip was a lot like Dunks’ and Eggs – the king and his friend.
      • And a bunch of others will live (Davos, Gilly) and a bunch of others will die (Theon, Grey Worm?). Cersei? I would love it if she lives. But I expect her to go out in a blaze of defiance of the NK, it would great if she saved one of her brothers at the same time.

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    59. No doubt the researchers have done a lot of work here but if Cersei survives the series I’ll be very surprised. Her and the Mountain look nailed on to die, with Euron and Jamie also very likely. I think Dany will probably die too and a raft of secondary characters like Tormund, Jorah, Greyworm, Beric etc.

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    60. Che:
      Out of curiosity, to the group at large, who is on your die/survive lists? Not speaking idealistically over who we would like to die or survive, but who we are predicting. Mine keep changing, but as it stands, this is what they look like:

      Die:
      Cersei
      Jaime
      Theon
      Varys
      Mel
      Beric
      Tormund
      Sandor
      The mountain
      Euron
      The dragons
      The wolves
      The NK
      Edd
      Greyworm
      Qyburn

      Survive:
      Arya
      Sansa
      Sam
      Gilly
      Bran (though it’s questionable whether he’s still Bran at this point)
      Tyrion
      Yara
      Jon/Dany (I am still unsure on them, I am a lot less sure they will survive than the others, but at the moment I reckon they’ll make it through – mainly because they have had 7 seasons – and 5 books – worth of character development priming them to rule – it would seem a bit like a betrayal of the plot not to follow through)
      Missandei
      Davos
      Gendry
      Bronn

      I think that’s everybody, though I’m prepared to hand my head in shame if I left anyone important out.

      What are your lists like?

      In order of most likely.

      Die:
      Cersei
      Mountain
      Euron
      Nights King
      Jorah
      Jamie
      Tormund
      Yara
      Greyworm
      Ed
      Dany
      Bronn

      Again in order of most likely:
      Survive:
      Sam
      Davos
      Arya
      Bran
      Tyrion
      Jon
      Sansa
      Missandei
      Brienne
      Theon
      The Hound

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    61. Jon Snowed,

      We ought to have a third list: Most Likely to Be Wightened.

      My #1 candidate is Lord Glover. At least it would shut up that whiny little weasel. I fear that Tormund or Beric may be on that list too.

      Also, if (when) there are skirmishes with the AotD, unless the Allied forces include battlefield burn squads to incinerate casualties, those corpses could soon show up again fighting for Team NK. I could envision Jon/Dany having the foresight to at least try to torch their KIAs. Cersei & her mercenary armies…. not so much.

      P.S. Random thought… Cersei mentioned that the Golden Company’s got elephants. You think we’re going to see wight pachyderms? 🐘👻

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    62. That’s an interesting one. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if we see a character become a wight however I don’t think we will see numerous characters so I’d guess the following are most likely (again in order):
      Hodor
      Tormund
      Edd
      Beric
      Greyworm (if Unsullied go out to meet Army of the Dead in the Field).

      I don’t see any more candidates depending or not whether that element is finished by episode 3-4 as some speculate.

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    63. In the show, not the books, Cersei is the least deserving on Arya’s list. Cersei wanted Ned to take the black, she was an unwitting pawn in Littlefingers shenanigans, set up as a target for the Starks. She had nothing to do with Robb or Catelyn deaths, Jamie pushed Bran, Joffrey victimized Sansa, show Cersei seemingly was dismayed at Joffrey’s cruelty, especially evident in confidant scenes with Tyrion, Margaery and Tywin. The Sept of Baelor on the other hand is another story, but Arya doesn’t care about that, she hates Cersei for deaths Cersei never was responsible for, period.

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    64. Tyjon,

      Arya was a child and her list reflects that.

      A better example of a childish approach was that the executioner is on her list. If I remember correctly this was his regular job. Even if he had reservations of the merit of the execution, Ned confessed. Then he was instructed by the king. I do not know if he knew anything of what happened beyond that.

      And you are correct, whatever the dispute, Cersei did not want Ned killed. Neither did Tyrion, Tywin or Jaime all of whom had other problems. Joffrey the Terrible was the main injured party by Ned’s allegations and so there is a context to why he decided to go for it.

      The bigger concern is that up to Season 7, she still has the list made by the child version of herself. I wonder if the House of Black & White only taught physical things. I do not know much about assassin training – but you would think some emotional discipline is needed to be a good assassin instead of a garden variety recreational murderer.

      I was not clear on the “list status” at the end of Season 7 and what Bran told them about the KL events. Then Sansa, Bran & Arya Court blamed the trouble between the Starks and Lannisters on LF and then killed him. That set the stage for the arrival of Tyrion and Jaime in S8 on more friendly terms.

      But were we to conclude that list is now done with? Or what?

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    65. Tyjon,

      Replying to Tyjon and Mango, above:

      You’re right. I’m not sure why Arya, Sansa – and even Tyrion – would blame Cersei for the deaths of Robb, Catelyn, or Ned. In S7e3 [see excerpt below], Sansa described Cersei as “the woman who murdered my mother, father, and brother.” But Cersei wasn’t complicit in the Red Wedding, and didn’t intend that Ned be executed. (Plus, Varys could confirm that Cersei intended that Ned confess treason and accept exile to the Wall.)

      The only reason Cersei would be on Arya’s list is because of Lady’s death – which was based on Joffrey’s lie and Robert’s indifference.

      I didn’t quite understand Tyrion’s logic for why Jon Snow should “hate” Cersei even more than Dany does ust because Cersei’s a Lannister:

      Tyrion to Dany, S7e2: “…If he [Jon Snow] does rule the North, he would make a valuable ally. The Lannisters executed his father and conspired to murder his brother. Jon Snow has even more reason to hate Cersei than you do.”

      But Tyrion knows that Tywin was behind the Red Wedding, not Cersei. And I believe Tyrion also knows Joffrey was behind Ned’s execution: During the KL riot when Tyrion slapped Joffrey and called him an idiot, he told him the people were starving “all because of a war you started.” Based on Tyrion’s rationale that Jon should hate “the Lannisters”, Jon should hate Tyrion too.
      ———
      In S7e3, when Jon met Dany, he said he wouldn’t hold a daughter responsible for her father’s crimes:

      Jon. “….Your father burned my grandfather alive. He burned my uncle alive. He would have burned the Seven Kingdoms–”
      Dany: “My father was an evil man. On behalf of House Targaryen I ask your forgiveness for the crimes he committed against your family. And I ask you not to judge a daughter by the sins of her father.
      ***
      Jon: “You’re right. You’re not guilty of your father’s crimes….”

      (For similar reasons, in S7e1 Jon refused to punish House Umber or House Karstark for siding with the Boltons, even though Smalljon Umber’s treachery led directly to Rickon’s death. See S7e1 excerpt below.)

      ——–
      S7e3, Sansa & LF

      LF: “I know Cersei better than anyone here. If you turn your back on her–”
      Sansa: “You don’t know Cersei better than anyone here.”
      LF: “I only meant to say–”
      Sansa: “That the woman who murdered my mother, father, and brother is dangerous? (Sarcastically) Thank you for your wise counsel.”

      Jon (S7e1): “I’m not going to strip these families of their ancestral homes because of the crimes of a few reckless sons.”
      Sansa: “So there’s no punishment for treason and no reward for loyalty?
      Jon: “The punishment for treason is death. Smalljon Umber died on the field of battle. Harald Karstark died on the field of battle.”
      ***
      “But I will not punish a son for his father’s sins, and I will not take a family home away from a family it has belonged to for centuries. That is my decision, and my decision is final.”

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    66. Actually before blowing up the sept of Baelor, Cersei was only responsible for the death of King Robert. Cersei had nothing to do with the death of the Targaryens and she wasn’t directly responsible for the death of the Starks.
      I remember Tyrion saying something about Dany hating Cersei, but Cersei never directly did anything wrong towards Dany or her family.
      The sandsnakes and Ellaria ‘deserved’ to die for killing an innocent girl like Myrcella. I’m sure a lot of mothers would want to do the same if someone had killed their daughter. It was Oberyn himself who wanted to fight the mountain, knowing what the risk was.

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    67. Mango,

      Cersei is on her list for more than believing she was a main reason her father was killed. She did play a big part in what happened regardless of whether or not she thought it the right decision to execute him. Arya blames her, also appropriately, for being a main reason for the deaths of Mycah and Lady as well as her feeling forced to send Nymeria away.

      The Mountain is on her list due to his actions at Harrenhal.

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    68. Tyjon,

      I agree with you – and Mango. My lengthier reply is stuck in Moderation, but I don’t understand why Arya, Sansa, and even Tyrion would blame Cersei for the deaths of Ned, Cat, or Robb. Jon certainly wouldn’t hold a daughter responsible for the crimes of her father or her son.

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    69. Clob,

      I thought that Arya had left KL immediately after the death of Ned. When did she develop this knowledge of Cersei’s failings? And exactly what did Cersei do that Arya would have been aware of while she was wandering in the bush with Hound? Something worth death? Remind me.
      I am not saying Cersei is great but I cannot pin down exactly what Arya would know about. Actually, what would even the audience know about up to the time Arya went to Bravos re Cersei’s sins and what of these would Arya know and how?

      I am really unsure.

      Ten Bears,

      Lol! I have been in that box a few times! Never on any merit, just testing my good nature.

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    70. Clob,

      Thanks for the examples. Lady and Nymeria are dogs. Death over dogs? Is this a child? Yes.

      Mycah’s incident was awful. I thought Joffrey was responsible for Mycah. Or was it Robert? Was it Cersei? Ned explained that to her or tried to, right?

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    71. Clob,

      Ned also played a very big part of what happened to him as Varys tried to tell him.

      How would Arya know the role Cersei played? The audience knows but Arya?

      Honour is one thing – wisdom is another. Wisdom was not strong with Ned. That is why LF was able to play him so completely.

        Quote  Reply

    72. Mango,
      I was mainly referencing her firsthand experience with Cersei on the Kingsroad when Arya witnessed her support Joffrey against the Starks and essentially forcing Robert to order Ned kill Lady in lieu of the ‘missing’ Nymeria. With that along with living in KL I think she was able to form a pretty accurate idea of what kind of person Cersei is. Stories she heard of Joffrey’s actions were also laid on her shoulders by Arya as well, some rightfully and some not. She’s heard of Cersei’s actions since her return too that can only bolster her hatred of the woman, i.e. Great Sept.

      I won’t argue that all of Arya’s accusations of Cersei would be 100% accurate, just that I think she has a pretty accurate idea of the woman Cersei is – and she’s not innocent. Arya’s older self may have forgiven her for the Kingsroad actions… if that was all there was. After the fact, she knows that Joffrey and the Lannisters were the reason her father, mother and brother all died.

        Quote  Reply

    73. … to add…
      She was also present at the feast as the serving girl witnessing the Lannisters celebrating with the Freys and Jaime speaking with Walder all at the same location as the Red Wedding. That implicated Cersei in her eyes even more, especially when Cersei soon after claimed the throne.

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    74. Stupid edit timer and my slow ass computer at work…
      “For House Lannister! For House Frey! May we stand together through the centuries, good friends to the last. And when we drive our swords through our enemies hearts, may we speak the words of our alliance, ‘The Freys, and the Lannisters, send their regards.'”
      That’s Walder’s toast that Arya heard. I’d say that gives her reason to want the leader of House Lannister dead. 😉

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    75. Clob,

      Ok. I see you find that convincing. She had her list when she was with the Hound, well before much of what you have written.

      About the dogs, Cersei was a bitch. But many mothers can indulge their terrible children in fights with other kids. Terrible incident. But her Dad counsel Arya about it..

      I am not sure what she should have assumed about Jaime meeting with the Frey long after/years (?) after the Red Wedding. Did she think other Houses would refuse to engage the Freys’ forever?

      Ned’s well-intended mistakes got his family into trouble. Then Cat mistaken attacked Tyrion. Then Robb declared war. The Starks are a very nice family. But it is not like the Lannisters marched north and attacked them sleeping in their bed. Toss a lit match into a pile of dry tinder and you get a fire. We can blame the tinder or the match. And, Jaime and Brienne Lannister did their best to save the girls.

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    76. Excuse me, please, Mango, but Lady and Nymeria are no mundane dogs, they are direwolfs, magical creatures with magical power, Stark-children know this very well.
      And besides: if there is someone, who demands my dog to be killed, because another dog has bitten (in this case: scratched a bit with it’s teeth!) his/her child, and enforces this demand – I would put this someone on my list, too.

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    77. Mango,
      I’m just saying she has her on the list because of everything. Not because of How things came to be but for What came to be. It’s not an ethics or morals list, it’s a revenge list.

      Like I said, she may have taken her off her ‘childish’ list if it was just the incident with the direwolves. Although, Mycah’s death would have probably prevented that. Even if Cersei wasn’t literally to blame for that, she was to blame for standing behind Joffrey and directly for Lady’s killing. That action alone was an ingredient for blaming her as well as Joffrey in Ned’s execution even if she didn’t have a (big) hand in it. Arya was very bitter…

      In the visual medium especially we have to assume that characters hear or learn things besides what we’re shown they have. It often becomes obvious that they have as the story progresses as we witnessed with Arya’s storyline. We should also figure that an intelligent character like Arya can deduce certain things with the knowledge. She’s learned over time that Joffrey was poisoned and that Tommen became king. She should also know that Tommen was a decent, young boy that would not be running anything yet. She knows that Tywin was killed so with that information everyone knew Cersei was running things. She knew the Boltons allied with the Lannisters with their betrayal of the Starks at the Red Wedding and then took Winterfell. Sooo…. When she went undercover at the Frey feast I’m sure she learned many things, not the least of which is that Cersei is leading House Lannister and is allied with Freys and Boltons – all of which had a hand in her family deaths and losing her home. She’d find out later that they got Winterfell back and turned around. Still, now that she’s home Cersei is demanding they recognize her as queen under threat of war. She knows Cersei blew up the Great Sept, so with that and everything else it’s obvious Cersei is still a threat to the rest of her family and home. She is the constant that’s been right there with House that’s cost Arya everything. I think Arya knows plenty to have her on the top of her list.

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    78. Well, it looks like my two cents are going to stay in Moderation Purgatory. Short version:

      I didn’t quite understand how Cersei is now being blamed for the Red Wedding (Tywin’s brainstorm) and Ned’s death (Joffrey ignored Cersei’s deal to exile Ned to the Wall):

      Sansa (to LF, S7e3) described Cersei as “the woman who murdered my mother, father, and brother.”

      Tyrion (to Dany, S7e2): “The Lannisters executed his father and conspired to murder his brother. Jon Snow has even more reason to hate Cersei than you do.”

      [Me to Tyrion: “Hey buddy, you’re a Lannister too.”]

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    79. Ten Bears,

      That is so correct.

      I am unsure why this is happening. Have they forgotten the story? It is a bit confusing, ain’t it?

      As the books have been left behind the story has become trash movie traditional “good vs evil” with Cersei as the baddie and Ned/Jon as the saint. And as it became more basic, it has become more popular – so they have that!

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