Game of Thrones is here once again, and we’ve got to thinking about what the program means to us. Deep character relations? Certainly. Interesting political intrigue? Undoubtedly. A wide and varied storyline that is incredibly intricate? Absolutely. But if we’re being honest, we hold one aspect of the show higher than any other—the brutal Game of Thrones deaths. If you’ve seen the show, then you know exactly what I’m talking about. Cast your mind back and I’m sure you can think of many a blood-soaked body. We’ve trawled through the past seasons of Game Of Thrones to bring you our favorite deaths of all. Spoilers are inevitable. Turn back now if you haven’t seen the show!
Red Viper Skull Smash
This Game of Thrones death had memes surrounding it as soon as it was out of the gate. The entire season had been leading up to the Martell vs. Mountain fight. The stakes were high with fan favorite Tyrion on trial to be hanged. Oberyn Martell was winning and the Mountain didn’t have a chance. Oberyn played with his prey before finishing it off. Then the Mountain turned around and gave us one of the most gruesome deaths in televised history. He perched himself on top of Martell and gouged his eyes out, killing him in the most painful way as his sister and Tyrion watched on from the sidelines. Understandably, these characters were horrified and disbelieving of what they had just seen. In true Game Of Thrones fashion, this event would have many knock on effects later on. But at that moment, Tyrion had given up all hope in the face of an insurmountable enemy.
The Golden Crown
Cast your mind all the way back to Season One, where everything was simpler in the Game of Thrones world. Dany and Viserys were with the Dothraki, and the plan was to invade Westeros and put a Targaryen back on the Iron Throne. However, there was one catch with this plan. The Dothraki were not especially cooperative—particularly in the case of Jason Mamoa’s Khal Drogo. Khal Drogo found it far better to instead pour a pot of molten gold over Viserys’ head, killing him in a painful and prolonged manner. Let it be known that you should never mess with a Dothraki and his bride.
Let's move the timeline on a little bit in regards to Dany. Without her brother hampering her, she has become the Khaleesi in body and mind, and has now committed herself to being the rightful ruler of Westeros. At the end of Season One she was left unscathed by a great fire. Not only was she unharmed, but she also emerged with three freshly hatched dragons—the first that have been seen in the lands of Westeros and Essos for many years. When you’ve got dragons, you’re going to use them to get up to some mischief—or execution. Man has no chance against a massive dragon, and in this grisly death, the fire completely envelops the helpless victim, cooking him enough to make a lovely piece of human jerky.
Dagger Meets Face
The fans of Game of Thrones are fairly divisive, and many a bitter argument has ensued about who should be the rightful king or queen of Westeros. However, one thing fans can agree on is that the scarred knight of Kings Landing, Sandor Clegane, is a total badass. This guy has fierce loyalty and a strong sense of conviction, especially for the honor of characters like the hapless Sansa. However, the other Stark sister soon meets this lumbering knight, and a strange buddy-cop relationship develops between them. This makes for one of the greatest fight scenes in the show, when Clegane expresses his strong desire for some chicken. In the fight that follows, Clegane absolutely destroys the aggressors. In this particular kill, he opts to force the poor fellow’s head into the dagger tip repeatedly. It’s grisly, but this Game of Thrones death shows the no-holds-barred attitude of Clegane when it comes to a fight.
Longsword Meets Shoulder
We're not yet finished with Clegane, mostly due to how poor he is at getting along with the other citizens of Westeros. In this case, Clegane comes into contact with the leader of the Brotherhood without Banners, Beric Dondarrion, who worship the exotic fire god R’hllor. Clegane fights and actually overcomes the leader, slicing his longsword straight through Dondarrion’s sword and into his shoulder, cutting a massive gash down his torso. However, those of you who have watched the show know that we’re cheating here—Beric doesn’t die. This might not be an all-out Game of Thrones death, but Clegane certainly gave it his best shot, so we felt it was worthy of the list.
Tongue Ripped Through Throat
Clegane isn’t the only man with multiple entries on this list. Khal Drogo is back with yet another inventive way to murder people. The Dothraki, the tribe of which Khal Drogo is king, are known throughout the land to be merciless—especially to their own people if they happen to misstep or disobey their king. Not only does Khal Drogo rip the poor guy’s throat open, but he manages to cram his hand up the dude’s oesophagus and rip out the tongue as some sort of morbid prize. As a person who watches a lot of TV and films, I can safely say I have never seen a kill quite like that before.
Pushed out the Moondoor
Far away from the savages in Essos, the sister of Catelyn Stark sits atop the throne in the Eyrie, a castle high up on a mountain away from political intrigue—or so she thinks. The master of coin himself, Petyr Baelish, seeks to marry her and she foolishly accepts. Baelish has a warped relationship with Sansa Stark, so when Lysa Tully threatens her, Baelish promptly pushes her out of the moondoor—a hole in the floor that expands over a colossal gap to what must be a terrifying and painful Game of Thrones death. Ice cold.
Mauled by Baby Wights
These kills seem rather trivial, though, when a zombie army descends upon the land of Westeros from the North. In fact, in the episode "Hardhome," we were treated to the first proper battle with them. It is during this battle that we realize just how screwed the entire world is from these almost immortal beings. What’s worse is that the curse of the undead knows no age, so when faced with a group of undead children, Valyrian Steel had neither the will nor the might to overcome the morbid challenge of fighting her way out of that. The White Walkers are coming, and they don’t care whether you’re a man, woman, or a child.
Impaled by a Giant's Arrow
We now move to the great battle between the under-equipped Night's Watch and the vast army of the Wildlings on the other side of the Wall. The Night's Watch may have a massive wall to help their defenses, but one thing they certainly don’t have is a giant. Giants are a rare delight to see on the show, but when we do, it is great fun in the most literal sense of the word. However, a giant obviously cannot fight with normal-sized weaponry. Instead, they have customized bows that launch massive arrows. One poor member of the Night's Watch was impaled by one, launched into the air with its force, and sent careening down into Castle Black on the other side.
Attending a Wedding in Westeros
You had to know this was coming. The infamous ninth episode of Season Three contained the "Red Wedding," otherwise known as one of the most harrowing TV experiences of all time. The only word to describe the grisly deaths of many of the main cast is a total and utter cull. Robb’s new wife is stabbed in the womb, Robb is viciously murdered, and Catelyn Stark, the mother who just watched her son die, has her throat slit in the final shot of the episode. There is no way to forget this Game of Thrones death, and I truly believe it will go down in history as some of the most gruesome killings in all of television drama.
Incinerated by Wildfire
Season Six of Game of Thrones ended with a bang, as Cersei unveiled her master plan to literally blow up all her enemies in a huge explosion of wildfire. She sees herself as a master manipulator worthy of her father's name. Although... it's pretty clear that this is a bone-headed decision that will only make things worse for her in the long run. The idea of having your flesh incinerated in a blaze of wildfire has to be among some of the worst death to ever appear on the series. The High Sparrow was burned alive as his flesh was stripped off the bone.
Ripped Apart by a Giant
Wun Wun was easily the MVP during the battle of the bastards. Jon Snow didn't need to arm him with a weapon, as his hands were enough to get the job done. There was nothing more satisfying than seeing him rip apart Ramsey Bolton's men. There isn't a worse death than being ripped apart by a giant, making this one of the most brutal Game of Thrones deaths.