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Ranking every Game of Thrones season

Monday 12th November 2018

It may seem like an age away, but it’s time to accept that Game of Thrones is coming to an end. Hitting HBO back in 2011, David Benioff and D.B. Weiss’ award-winning series has given us some 67 episodes of howling wolves and roaring dragons.

Looking back at the seven seasons of the Seven Kingdoms, there have been plenty of highs and relatively few lows. While no one season of Game of Thrones could be branded as bad, there’s no denying that parts of the epic saga have been better than others. With this in mind, here’s the definitive ranking of all the seasons of Game of Thrones.

Season 2

Don’t have our heads for this, but we’re going with the controversial statement that Season 2 isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. “Blackwater” is still one of the best Game of Thrones episodes of all time, but aside from that, fans plodded through 10 episodes of a whining Sansa, Robb Stark slowly inching across the land, and that creepy Greyjoy scene on the horse.

Elsewhere, Daenerys had a forgettable trip to Qarth with some lacklustre villains and is largely remembered for shouting, “Where are my dragons?”. At least we saw the introduction of fan-favourites like Brienne of Tarth, Lady Melisandre, Davos, and Margaery, but there was the overall feeling that Thrones was still finding its feet.

Game of Thrones odds: Who will rule Westeros?

Season 5

Another season saved by a standout episode, at least Season 5 is remembered for “Hardhome”. Audiences finally saw some action up North when the Night King and his White Walkers emerged as a credible threat to the realm.

There is so much to praise in Season 5 thanks to iconic scenes like Cersei’s walk of shame and Jon Snow’s apparent demise, but most of these came a little too late in the season.

On the flip side, there was the controversial rape of Sophie Turner’s Sansa Stark and the once powerful Stannis became little more than a tragic anti-hero past his prime. Finally, a shoddy trip to Dorne and abysmal characters like the Sand Snakes left fans pretty ‘hissed’ off at how Season 5 panned out.

Season 7

A little closer to home, we come neatly to the abridged Season 7 and the most recent run of episodes. Thrones was still boasting a supersized cast but had lost many of the big players that made it so great in the first place.

Joining the pile of corpses in 2017 was Dame Diana Rigg’s acid-tongued Olenna Tyrell and Littlefinger finally got his comeuppance. At least there was a ray of hope as the surviving Starks finally gathered under the banners at Winterfell.

Highlights included the action-packed “The Spoils of War”, but episodes like “Eastwatch” were simply there to make up the numbers. Feeling like a big ol' reunion, Season 7 also put the pieces in play for the show’s icy swansong. Was it the best run of episodes? No. Was it the worst? No. After the shocks of Season 7, one thing’s for sure -- all bets are off.

Season 6

With a nail-biting wait to see whether Jon Snow lived to fight another day, Season 6 was back with a bang in 2016.

A casting cull that set the wheels in motion for a downsized Game of Thrones cast, Season 6 waved goodbye to the likes of Ramsay, poor Hodor *sob*, and the entire Sept of Baelor.

“The Door” will always be a standout episode of Season 6, but other memorable moments include the return of the Hound, Daenerys burning the Khals, and the long-awaited confirmation of R + L = J. 

Cersei finally solidified her grip on King’s Landing and Thrones headed into its twilight years with Jon Snow crowned as the 'new' King in the North.

Season 1

Rising from the ashes of the notoriously dire pilot episode, Game of Thrones has some new faces and eventually made it onto our screens with “Winter is Coming” in 2011. A pretty faithful adaptation of George R.R. Martin’s first book, the early days of the show played it safe for the freshman year -- that doesn’t mean there wasn’t plenty to keep viewers hooked. 

For those who hadn’t read Martin’s book series, the moment that Ned Stark lost his head in “Baelor” will always be one of the biggest TV plot twists of all time.

There were also cliffhangers aplenty as the Starks dispersed themselves across the land, Daenerys emerged from the flames as the Mother of Dragons, and Jon Snow made those tentative steps beyond the Wall. 

A post-Sean Bean Thrones continued to thrive, but Season 1 set the ratings juggernaut in motion.

Season 3

Perhaps the only moment that will ever top Ned Stark’s gruesome beheading at King’s Landing was the great Stark cull of the Red Wedding. “The Rains of Castamere” remains one of the best hours of TV to ever grace our screens and rockets Season 3 right up the Game of Thrones rankings.

It was a season of brilliant pairings while Jon and Ygritte got steamy, Jaime and Brienne became the couple we never knew we needed, and Arya and the Hound scooped the award for best comedy double act.

The once meek Daenerys Targaryen spread her wings even further and audiences will undoubtedly still get a shiver when they remember the first time she shouted “Dracarys”. Season 3 was great, but what came next was even better!

Season 4

It’s hard to explain where Season 4 got it right, but the midpoint of Game of Thrones gave the characters some of their biggest arcs to date. The Lannisters were front-and-centre, and to be honest, we could’ve probably watched a whole season of just Peter Dinklage as Tyrion. The Imp’s ongoing trial was part Law and Order, part Lord of the Rings, and fans couldn’t get enough.

Newcomers included Pedro Pascal as he soared to notoriety as the Red Viper through his bloody Trial by Combat. Seeing Oberyn Martell face-off against the Mountain will always be one of the greatest Thrones battles of all time.

Continuing the show’s theme of deadly weddings, Joffrey popped his clogs at the Purple Wedding and the next big power struggle towards the Iron Throne began. Rounding off with Tyrion finally breaking free from his family’s legacy, everyone remembers the moment Tywin took a crossbow to the chest while having a ‘private moment’. 

Season 8 has a lot to live up to if it wants to topple Season 4, but we’re guessing the final six episodes will have more jaw-dropping moments than ever before.

Game of Thrones odds: Who will rule Westeros?

Bran Stark 1/1
Daenerys Targaryen 3/1
Any Child Of Daenerys Targaryen 3/1
Any Child Of Jon Snow 3/1
Jon Snow 7/2
Tyrion Lannister 11/2
Cersei Lannister 9/1
Nights King (Current Leader Of The White Walkers) 10/1
Sansa Stark 12/1
Arya Stark 16/1
Gendry 16/1
Any Child Of Cersei 20/1
Samwell Tarly 33/1
Jaime Lannister 33/1
Lord Varys 50/1
Euron Greyjoy (Crows Eye) 50/1
The Children Of The Forest 66/1
Ser Davos 80/1
Podrick Payne 80/1
Jaqen H'ghar 100/1
Bronn Of The Blackwater 100/1
Grey Worm 100/1
Missandei 100/1
Brienne Of Tarth 100/1
Lyanna Mormont 100/1
Jorah Mormont 100/1
Victarion Greyjoy 100/1
Tycho Nestoris 100/1
Beric Dondarrion 100/1
Tormund Giantsbane 100/1
Theon Greyjoy 125/1
Yara Greyjoy 125/1
Catelyn Stark (Lady Stoneheart) 150/1
Eddison Tollett (Dolorous Edd) 150/1
Meera Reed 250/1
Ellaria Sand 250/1
Ser Pounce 250/1
Illyrio Mopatis 250/1
Hot Pie 325/1
Gilly 325/1
Ed Sheeran 325/1

Game of Thrones odds: Who will rule Westeros?

3. Any Child Of Daenerys Targaryen
8. Nights King (Current Leader Of The White Walkers)
16. Euron Greyjoy (Crows Eye)
17. The Children Of The Forest
33. Catelyn Stark (Lady Stoneheart)
34. Eddison Tollett (Dolorous Edd)
Odds correct as of 11th Apr, 15:37 . Odds are subject to change.
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