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'Game of Thrones' Season 8: Who Deserves the Iron Throne?

Posted on 28 September, 2018 by Emma
87 out of 100 based on 555 user ratings

'Game of Thrones' Season 8: Who Deserves the Iron Throne?

Winter is here, and all men must die, but only one of our favorite Game of Thronescharacters can end up on the Iron Throne, right?

Before the HBO drama returns for its massively anticipated eighth and final season, it's time to break down the strongest contenders for the series' ultimate goal -- beyond just staying alive, that is. With many different claims to the throne and several branches of royal lineage at play, there is no clear frontrunner, and likely won't be until the last sword has fallen, but ET's Leanne Aguilera put the cast on the spot at the Game of Thronesseason 8 premiere and press events last week, asking who they thought deserved the title.

Opinions were split in many directions, with some naming long-dead characters like Ned Stark and Hodor, and others pointing out that no GoTcharacter truly "deserves" the throne. "Everybody's got their pluses and their minuses, nobody deserves it outright," noted John Bradley, who plays Samwell Tarly.

GoT creator George R.R. Martin, however, may have the best take of all, with his vote for "Ser Pounce!"

Watch the video above and read on to find out who the rest of the cast is voting for -- and the Vegas odds on each character, courtesy of OddsShark:

7. Bran Stark

bran stark

HBO

He might be the Night King, he might be a time traveler, but one thing's for sure, Bran has come a long way from the mischievous snooper who was pushed from the Winterfell tower. And while he seems to be a bit too preoccupied to rule, what with being able to warg through space and time, Bran is currently the odds-on favorite to take the throne at series end. Long live the Three-Eyed Raven? 

Vegas Odds: +220 (1st overall)

6. Cersei Lannister

cersei lannister

HBO

A powerful, uncompromising woman seeking a universally respected position of power -- that's a story that always ends well, right? Just kidding, Cersei is almost definitely going to die before realizing the dream she's sacrificed nearly everything for. But wouldn't it be nice?

Vegas Odds: +2500 (12th overall)

5. Gendry

gendry

HBO

If the rumors about Gendry's parentage are true, he may have one of the most solid claims to the throne in all the seven realms. And honestly, if the years of rowing and marathon sprinting back to Eastwatch didn't kill him, he's got a good shot at outlasting the competition.

Vegas Odds:+2500 (12th overall)

Cast Support:Mark Addy, who plays Gendry's father, the late king Robert Baratheon, gave him a show of support at the season 8 premiere -- though he also threw his hat in the ring for Jon Snow and noted that Tyrion Lannister might be best suited for the job, "because of all he's been through."

4. Sansa Stark

sansa stark

HBO

The Lady of Winterfell came into her own in season 7, taking hold of her destiny and executing Littlefinger in one of the most satisfying scenes in the series to date. And while the final season will see her grappling with the return of her half-brother (now cousin), Jon Snow, and his love, Daenerys Targaryen, to her northern home, Sansa has been through enough in GoT's seven seasons to make her a formidable opponent for anyone who might challenge her to rule.

Vegas Odds:+500 (3rd overall)

Cast Support:Not even Sophie Turner herself is voting for Sansa, though she may be playing the long game with her teasing answer. "I don't think anyone deserves it," the actress claimed during season 8 press interviews. "I think everyone just needs to stop being so obsessed with this bloody Iron Throne."

3. Jon Snow

jon snow

HBO

Jon Snow knows nothing, and in today's political climate, that makes him perfectly suited for the job! The King in the North has proven his ability to lead and garner support and mobilization from some of the kingdom's most stalwart families, and he's already cheated death once. Plus, his newly-revealed bloodline gives him a legitimate claim to the throne -- provided, of course, that it's still standing once the White Walkers arrive.

Vegas Odds:+350 (2nd overall)

Cast Support:Jon has the support of some GoT heavyweights, including Mark Addy, who played the late king Robert Baratheon, and Richard Dormer aka Beric Dondarrion. We'd also like to assume that Kit Harington's real-life wife, Rose Leslie, who played the Wildling Ygritte, is in his corner as well.

2. Daenerys Targaryen

daenerys targaryen

HBO

No one believes that Daenerys deserves the throne more than the Khaleesi herself. She's got a legitimate claim, the support of some of the kingdom's most powerful players and, oh yeah, two dragons. And actress Emilia Clarke agrees. "Dammit! Daenerys!" she replied, when asked for her vote at the season 8 premiere. "I mean, all the other people who deserve it more than I do, but I'm gonna say the Mother of Dragons should get the throne."

Vegas Odds:+350 (2nd overall)

Cast Support:By far the most popular choice among cast members who would pick a side, Dany got the vote of  Jacob Anderson aka Grey Worm, Joe Dempsie aka Gendry, and of course, Khal Drogo himself, Jason Momoa: "My Khaleesi!"

1. Arya Stark

arya stark

HBO

Of all the characters in Game of Thrones,perhaps none have been battle-tested for the throne more than Arya. The young lady of Winterfell -- just don't call her that -- has been through the ringer in GoT'sseven seasons so far, and she returned home ruthless and ready to wage war on any who dared threaten her family and end up on her fateful list. That's the kind of ruler the Iron Throne needs, and the kind of ruler Westeros deserves.

Vegas Odds: +1600 (10th overall)

Cast Support:Like her on-screen sister, Maisie Williams insisted that the debate over the Iron Throne is rather dull to her at this point. "There's so much more to this story!" Maybe they're just trying to throw us off the scent?

Game of Thrones returns for its final season on Sunday at 9 p.m. ET/PT on HBO.

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