"When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die." - Cersei
With the final season of Game of Thrones virtually upon us, we're only a few episodes away from uncovering the series-long question that's been hanging ever since the beginning: who will sit on the iron throne?
Eight seasons in, we've seen a revolving door of characters who either claimed, sat on, or vacated the throne. Now there's only a handful of contenders left, from the most obscure (Gendry) to the most favoured (Jon Snow or Daenerys).
But as we all know by now, anything can happen--we might even see the throne change hands mid-season finale.
It's all up in the air. However, that won't stop us from speculating (or root for) who'll eventually sit on the Iron Throne by series end. Here are our picks:
#9 - Euron Greyjoy
With the promise of marriage from the current occupant of the Iron Throne, Cersei Lannister, Euron could have a shot at sitting on the Iron throne--but with one condition: that he help her kill all her enemies converging in the North.
#8 - Gendry Baratheon
The bastard child of Robert Baratheon, former ruler of the Seven Kingdoms, Gendry can claim his birthright for the Iron throne. But we believe Gendry has the least chance of claiming royalty because of his arc in this story.
#7 - Tyrion Lannister
Tyrion certainly has the wits and heritage to be the ruler of Westeros. But we've seen how loyal he is as the Hand of the Khaleesi. We're pretty sure he'll want to see her claim her right to the throne before anybody's--even his own.
#6 - The Night King
There's only one reason for all the times "Winter is coming" and that reason is the Night King, the Lord of the Undead. With him commanding a seemingly endless army of the enchanted undead on an undead dragon, we could imagine him overpowering even the combined might of the houses in Westeros.
#5 - Sansa Stark
Sansa has been as close as anyone in affiliation to the Iron throne. After all, she was the queen to the former King Joffrey Baratheon and it looks like ruling like a queen fits her M.O. But there are many others who seems to be destined, that's why she's here in the middle of the pack.
#4 - Cersei Lannister
The incumbent ruler on the Iron throne, Cersei has connived, murdered, and outwitted everyone on her way to the top. It's not actually that hard to see her hold on to the seat of Westeros' power now that she's proven time and time again that she'll do anything for her family to stay in power.
#3 - Jon Snow
Or from this point on, Aegon Targaryen. It's been revealed to everyone (except himself, he really does know nothing) that Jon Snow has the best case to claim his rightful place on the throne. His father is the Mad King's son, Rhaegar Targaryen and his mother is Lyanna Stark, Ned's younger sister. He's literally the song of fire and ice. However, he's also the last person he sees ruling from the Iron throne. So, we just have to see.
#2 - Daenerys Targaryen
If Jon Snow has the best claim, Daenerys is perhaps the most deserving of the Iron throne. Her journey was that of constant peril, death, anguish, and cruelty. But she managed to overcome all the odds (having mythical dragons helps a lot) and shift the power struggle over to her side, having key players to back her up. This also makes her ripe to be picked off by the showrunners, as is their habit of killing characters we love. But if Danaerys is only #2. who could be #1?
#1 - No one
When we say no one, we don't mean Arya or her mentor Jaquen--we really mean no one. There's a good chance that every major character will eventually perish and the game will end with no one winning, which might be the biggest twist of all and oddly satisfying at the same time. Honestly, we're just not trying to get our hopes up so it hurts less when we see our beloved characters die on screen.