Game of Thrones has no shortage of gore and death. Hell, they have a whole army of people that are completely dead. One thing viewers know for sure is don’t get attached to characters, because no one – NO ONE! – is safe in this series. There have been deaths, too many to count, but here is our list of the top 5 deaths in the past 7 seasons.
5. Ned Stark – Season 1, Episode 9 – ‘Baelor’
For the audience members that hadn’t read the books, Ned Stark (Sean Bean) was the first death that occurred that just had everyone picking their jaws up off the floor. He seemed to be so pivotal to the story and killing him was just so out of left field. Obviously his death was so important and necessary since it facilitated so many other storylines being set into motion, but it was definitely a game changer and communicated that this was not going to be just another predictable, ordinary story.
4. Renly Baratheon – Season 2, Episode 5 – ‘The Ghost of Harrenhal’
While most viewers were not banking on the youngest Baratheon (Gethin Anthony) making it all the way to the iron throne, his death confirmed one very important thing. The Red Witch was not just talking nonsense. Her ‘Lord of Light’ was real and honestly pretty dang awesome. He sprung from her nethers like a newborn babe in a cave with Davos Seaworth watching on, then somehow appeared in Renly’s tent to stab him in the back right in front of Brienne of Tarth and Catelyn Stark. By allowing her magic to do something as meaningful as murdering Stannis’ brother, viewers now know that the Lord of Light wasn’t just all fairy tales and scary stories.
3. Tommen Baratheon – Season 6, Episode 10 – ‘The Winds of Winter’
The suicide of King Tommen Baratheon (Dean-Charles Chapman) after his mother, Cersei, blows up the Great Sept means the end of the Baratheon line supplied by Cersei and Robert. Even now by this time most know that the children born to Robert were not his children and not the rightful heirs to the throne, but instead children born from incest between brother and sister Lannister.
Tommen was the polar opposite of his sadistic, evil brother Joffrey, and the life of a king proved too much for him. He quietly walked out his window and plunged to his death. Blink and you might have missed it, but make no mistake, he was the last of cursed Cersei’s children to be able to take the seat on the iron throne. Well until she makes more…
2. Jon Snow – Season 5, Episode 10 – ‘Mother’s Mercy’
Jon Snow (Kit Harington) had been one of the biggest contenders to end up on the iron throne, so to watch him be murdered at the hands of his brothers from the Night’s Watch was doubly troubling. Since this was the season finale, viewers had to wait from June of 2015 until April of the following year to find out his fate. There was wild speculation on the subject of whether he would or would not be brought back to life. Thankfully Melisandre was nearby and readily dispatched her magic and brought the beloved Jon Snow back from the dead to continue his way to the iron throne.
1. Joffrey Baratheon – Season 4, Episode 2 – ‘The Lion and the Rose’
Never has the world anticipated and cheered at a character’s horrific demise as that of the whiny, morally corrupt Joffrey (Jack Gleeson). He was evil through and through and took delight in torturing his once intended bride Sansa Stark. He was everything a king should not be, and those around him were at a loss controlling the teen. Even his mother, Cersei, who has her own gory past, was shocked at the things he would do. Literally no one was safe in his presence since he relished so in making others suffer.
Fortunately, his death was every bit as awful as his life. Watching him choke and turn from pink to white with blood streaming out from his nose and mouth would normally make one turn away from the screen, but watching him slip away was just so gratifying that audiences savoured every delicious moment of his exit.
With a huge war on the horizon, the death count is sure to keep climbing. The question remains though, who will be Season eight’s casualties?