Game of Thrones series finale: Who has the best chance at the Iron Throne?


With many farewells made last week, we’ll see who’s still left to stake a claim! Here is our favorite and underdog for the Iron Throne in the series finale.

Warning: Spoilers for season 8 of Game of Thrones follow.

Well, we’ve all but reached the end. Only one episode remains of a series placed so firmly in the zeitgeist; I doubt any of us will be forgetting it for years to come: Game of Thrones. With season 8 episode 5, “The Bells”, done and dusted, we have seen the climax of the story. The end of so many character arcs, even those who have once received the favorite slot in this very article. You can catch a recap of the episode here.

Before we get into it, I would like to take a moment to recognize those who had a good run, but came up just a little bit short. Cersei held power longer than any other nobleman in the show, either being on the throne or throne-adjacent for all eight seasons. Barring her stint with the Faith Militant, Cersei certainly had the longest time at the top.

Varys served under more rulers than anyone in the kingdom before his execution by Drogon. While he never sat on the Iron Throne, Varys played the “game of thrones” better than anyone in the series, eventually putting Littlefinger’s maneuvering to shame. And of course, my favorite underdog of this series (the show, and this series of articles), Gendry. The tenements of Robert’s Rebellion may not be upheld, but a Baratheon belongs on the throne in my heart. Storm’s End is not a bad consolation prize for a Fleabottom bastard, though.

With that said, let’s get into our last ever Iron Throne prediction.

Kit Harington as Jon Snow-Photo: Helen Sloan/HBO

Favorite: Jon Snow

The only character to feature in this slot twice, Jon Snow saw his royal potential skyrocket in “The Bells.” The news of Jon Snow’s true parentage has now become common knowledge among the greater houses of Westeros. We can assume that Varys got quite a few ravens off before being brought in for execution, meaning the damage has been done to Daenerys’ claim, and we’ve already seen the impact.

Varys paid for his insubordination with his life, and the Northerners are all but lost to Daenerys’ cause. Even Tyrion, her staunchest supporter, seems shaken in his faith for the dragon queen.

What really nails Jon into this position, however, has nothing to do with what he did last week. In fact, Jon did not do much of significance last episode. Instead he, like the rest of us, simply had to watch the destruction that came with Dany’s turn.

I find it hard to detail exactly what happened other than that she just snapped. Daenerys’ isolation and familial demons compelled her to commit the most atrocious war-crime in Westerosi history. It is evident that she will no longer receive any support from her Westerosi followers unless it is inspired by fear, fire, and blood.

Thus, enter Jon. His claim to the throne is stronger than Daenerys’. He has the love of the people, the level-headed demeanor, and the natural leadership qualities needed to oversee a peaceful and productive kingdom. He’s just and honorable, which is more than you can say for any Westerosi monarch in recent memory. I predict Jon will be the one to execute Dany for her crimes in King’s Landing, and will then reluctantly have the crown placed on his head.

Isaac Hempstead Wrigh as Bran Stark. Photo: Helen Sloan/Courtesy of HBO

Underdog: Bran Stark

I, as a fan, take the greatest care to avoid any sort of spoilers. This goes doubly for leaks, or any information that is not meant to be available to the public. That being said, I became privy to a tweet that listed the actual Vegas odds for the Iron Throne, and I would be remiss to not include them. I would be shocked if there was not some insider information at play, and again I have not read any leaks to confirm or deny this, but the best odds according to Vegas go to Bran Stark.

Assuming Jon refuses the rule, it does make sense that Bran gets the vote of the people. He is unburdened by personal desire, so he will always be capable of making a just, objective decision.

His entire character arc was dedicated to defeating the Night King, so he clearly cares about the good of the realm. But most importantly, he can see the greatest triumphs and worst mistakes of any ruler in the history of Westeros, first-hand and at-will. No one will have a better concept of how not to rule than Bran Stark.

Related Story. Daenerys Targaryen's hair journey in "The Bells". light

This Sunday, you’ll be able to catch the series finale — if the nerves don’t get you before then.

If you agree, let us know why in the comments below. Or, if you think someone else will end up on the throne, let us know who you think it is. We’d love to discuss all theories and possibilities.