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'Game Of Thrones' Characters Most Likely To Die Next Episode, Ranked

The upcoming Game of Thrones episode is the highly anticipated Battle of Winterfell, which means one thing: some of your favourite characters are going to die.

The episode -- helmed by Battle of the Bastards and Hardholme directed Miguel Sapochnik -- promises the longest battle scene in cinematic or television history. It's about 80-minutes long, and promises pretty much wall-to-wall combat.

"This final face-off between the Army of the Dead and the army of the living is completely unprecedented and relentless and a mixture of genres even within the battle," co-executive producer Bryan Cogman told EW.

"There are sequences built within sequences built within sequences. It's been exhausting but I think it will blow everybody away."

Game of Thrones has never been one to shy away from unexpectedly knocking off main characters (RIP half the Stark clan), but for several seasons now, our main guys have been relatively safe. Sure, Jon Snow died, but only for two episodes.

This week's episode promises to change all that -- here's who's most likely to die this week, based on their character arc.

Photo: HBO.
Safe

30. Cersei Lannister

The girl is in another postcode. She's as safe as anyone. - Wade.

29. Bronn

Bronn has been tasked by Cersei to kill both her brothers, if they survive the undead invasion. We don't know for sure if Bronn has accepted the mission, but he's smart enough to keep himself out of the firing line until the danger's past. - Alex.

28. Jaime Lannister

Photo: HBO.

Jaime still has some resolving to do with his sister, which may or may not end with his fingers around her neck vis-à-vis the Valonqar theory. He can't die yet because it would be a travesty to the Jaime-Cersei tension we've been watching heat up for years. - Alex.

27. Tyrion Lannister

Despite being on an all-time losing streak, he's not done yet. Both Sansa and Jorah pumped his tyres to Dany, so he still has a higher purpose to serve. - Wade.

Would just like to add that Tyrion and Sansa would make the ultimate Game of Thrones power couple, should they all survive this. - Alex.

26. Sansa Stark

Sansa is quickly emerging as the leader we not only have, but the one we deserve. If she doesn't see the season out to rule as Queen of the North (assuming the Iron Throne is destroyed, of course), then I might start throwing things. - Alex.

25. Daenerys Targaryen

While she'll likely ride a dragon in battle, so is at some risk, she's not going to die until she and Jon resolve their lineage issue. - Wade.

24. Jon Snow

Photo: HBO.

Same as Dany. These two have some serious turning on each other to do. - Alex.

23. The Hound

In the Season 7 finale, Sandor told his brother The Mountain: "That's not how it ends for you, brother. You know who's coming for you. You've always known." Fans took this to mean Cleganebowl -- a.k.a. a showdown between the two most physically powerful brothers in Westeros -- was coming, and we've been given no reason to believe otherwise. - Wade.

Not-So-Safe

22. Dragons

Dragons would be the biggest symbolic and most visible deaths on the battlefield. If undead Viserion falls, the living would get a huge morale boost. Inversely, if Rhaegal or Drogon fell, it would be an all-time buzz kill for the good guys. All three definitely aren’t surviving until the end of the season, but this battle might be one too early. - Wade.

21. Samwell Tarley

Sam's a survivor. Sam's also a bit useless in battle. Yes, he killed a White Walker, but does that translate to invincibility? No, it does not. I don't think we'll be seeing the deaths of both Sam and Bran, so if one dies, the other shoots higher up the 'safe' list. Both Sam and Bran are keepers of the history of men -- one by magic, the other by books. - Alex.

20. Bran Stark

Photo: HBO.

The Night King wants Bran dead, therefore it stands to reason that Bran isn't exactly safe this battle. Theon Greyjoy will be protecting him, but Theon doesn't have a great track history here -- and every wight will be doing their best to rip Bran clean in half. Still, he's barely come into his own as this Three Eyed Raven, so he might have some purpose left to serve. - Alex.

19. Gilly

Sweet Gilly. She's finally coming into her own, helping direct the newcomers to Winterfell's very-safe, not-at-all-stocked-with-dead-bodies-just-waiting-to-rise-up-and-kill-you crypts. In my books, that means there's a good chance she's dead. Not an overly emotional death, but Sam would be devastated. - Alex.

18. Baby Sam

Wouldn't it be tragic if we had to watch Gilly watch her son die? Game of Thrones is going to murder us with emotion. - Alex.

17. Davos

Davos is a self-admittedly poor fighter. But he's survived this long, so his chances of surviving another unwinnable fight are decent-ish. - Alex

16. Arya Stark

It makes no sense to kill Arya now, except to remind you that no one is 'safe'. If she died in the first few minutes of the battle, the stakes would go through the roof. Hopefully, the show chooses a different path for her: She's only just beginning to reckon with her humanity again, after becoming a mercilessly cruel assassin (there's killing your enemy, and then there's feeding him his own sons). Give Arya time to heal from trauma. - Alex.

Photo: HBO.

15. Podrick Payne

Pod is likely to be in the thick of the fighting, but as we see the more weathered fighters get knocked off (scroll down), SOMEONE has to lead the way forward. We saw Pod sparring with some of the more junior fighters last episode, so it would be nice for him to make it through this next battle. - Alex

14. The Night King

The Night King is smack bang in the middle of this list for a reason: it could really go either way. Either he dies this battle, the army of the dead die with him, and that entire plot line is resolved (leaving the question of 'who' is going to rule the Seven Kingdoms open for the next three episodes to deal with), or he'll live, and this undead battle will continue while we have the Cersei versus Dany versus Jon showdown that's coming. - Alex

13. Lyanna Mormont

Game of Thrones isn't adverse to killing off a young child whom we all love (RIP Shireen). She's determined to fight. She might be destined to die. - Alex.

12. Tormund

Tormund has escaped death so many times, it's not funny. But there's one key plot reason to keep him around: without him, we as an audience have no emotional connection to the wildlings, of which there are still hundreds. Kill Tormund, and you kill their narrative. - Wade.

11. Missendei

After Missendei and Grey Worm had that wistful conversation about going to the beach, you just know one (or both) of them is going to kark it. My money's on Grey Worm. - Alex.

10. Gendry

Made Arya her dragon-glass spear. Arya made him her bitch. Last surviving Baratheon is maybe his last-remaining narrative purpose, and given the show has recently erased the Tyrrells, Freys, Martells, Boltons and Umbers, this counts for bugger all. - Wade.

Almost Definitely Dead

9. Jorah Mormont

He has Hearstbane now, so he'll take some killing. - Wade.

8. Varys

It's starting to feel like the show doesn't know what to do with Varys. Dany is overrun by advisers -- Varys, Tyrion and Jorah, as well as to a lesser extent Jon and Davos -- and his role was always more puppet-master than day-to-day adviser, anyway. He's successfully brought people from all the major families together (ish). - Alex.

7. Brienne of Tarth

That's Ser Brienne to us all. The newly anointed knight has achieved pretty much everything: safely delivering the Stark sisters home, the honour she's deserved her entire life, and a mutual friendship with Jaime. It would be the ultimate tragedy to cut her life short now that she and Jaime could potentially wind up together, and that's exactly why this godforsaken show will do it. - Alex.

6. This guy:

Photo: HBO.

Does he have a name? No idea. We refer to him as 'Soup Boy'. But as Soup Boy had a few lines to say last episode, I can only assume he'll be dead in the next one. - Alex.

5. Dolorous Edd

Yeah, the Night Watch guy. His watch is ended. - Wade.

4. Ghost

Thematically speaking, Ghost has always been tied up to Jon's otherness, prowess in battle, and connection to the North. Well, now Jon has a dragon. - Alex.

Photo: HBO.

3. Theon Greyjoy

Theon gained absolution from the Starks. Expect him to self-sacrifice defending Bran in the Godswood, ultimately earning his full redemption for sacking Winterfell and burning fake-Bran. - Wade.

2. Grey Worm

If a fictional character ever talks about their retirement plans, it's a death sentence. There is zero chance he joins Missendei for their cute island honeymoon. - Wade.

1. Beric Dondarrion

Guaranteed to go out in a fiery sword blaze of glory. Basically, the Lord of Light brought him back a dozen times so he can be a recognisable death in this episode. - Wade.

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