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Power Rankings: The Top 15 Most Powerful People in Game of Thrones
- Updated: June 14, 2016
Power is the ultimate prize for any character in a World of Fire and Ice. No matter what goals these characters set for themselves, seizing and maintaining power are the keys to success. Whether it is proselytizing the general public, establishing a dynasty, or perpetuating a sphere of influence; power is the common denominator. Taking the Iron Throne and its dominions requires a multitude of attributes and accessories; army size and experience, cunning advisers, fearless leaders, an indomitable chain of supply… and oftentimes a healthy dose of magic in this unpredictable world. All of these factors are taken into account and tabulated as we rank the characters with the most power as of the most recent Episode 8 of Season 6. These reflect only the CURRENT standing of Westeros, and while we may acknowledge past achievements or future speculation, these rankings are based solely on the present.
1 – Night’s King
The only things we can expect in life are death and taxes. And you best believe that the Grim Reaper of Westeros is going to tax that ass sooner rather than later. The Night’s King has a virtually unlimited army of undead soldiers who have no self-regard seeing they already bit the bullet and can be recruited at will from newly minted corpses. They do not eat, sleep, or rest until everything in their path is cold and dead like them. As a result, The Night’s King is a seemingly invincible foe for the poor mortals of GOT and indestructible unless they ally themselves completely against the army of the dead. Dragonglass, Valyrian steel, and fire are the only weapons that can be used against them and all are in short supply. A shoe-in for the top spot.
2 – Bran
The crippled Stark boy and his newfound ability to bend time and space to his will is the most imminent threat to the Night’s King’s objectives. It was made clear that even Night’s King views him as his biggest rival when he marches against him after grabbing his arm in a vision. Bran’s limited grasp of his powers saves the day in Episode 5, but not without losing a valuable companion in Hodor. If Bran can fully manipulate his omnipotence, than he should be able to claim the top spot and defeat the Night’s King. Despite potentially having the final say over the ultimate fate of Westeros as a veritable living God, Bran’s already been deemed “not ready” by the three eyed raven, and these powers could prove too much for the crippled Stark.
THE REGIONAL POWERS
3 – Daenarys
The last living Targaryen rounds out the top three on our list. Khaleesi is reunited with Drogon, a huge X factor, and has a massive army of Unsullied, Dothraki, and the Second Sons. While she is more than capable of carnage herself, she heavily relies on a bevy of advisors and captains to dole out daily tasks and maintain her forces. She is revered as a God and mother to her people and will conquer anything in her path, but does not have the overarching supernatural powers of the two above her. Nonetheless, incapable of being burnt, owning three dragons & a beastly host of armies, Daeny is the most imposing and powerful human force. (and has the bevy of titles to prove it)
4 – High Sparrow
No, this ranking is not a strict result of The Sparrows massive old meat sword. Rather, the convoluted power struggle in the capital leaves the humble and hing religious leader as the number one power broker in the region. He has an army of zealots who fearlessly face the enemies of the faith, and, more importantly, recently secured his direct influence over King Tommen. Squaring off with Jaime Lannister and the Tyrell army resulted in them both leaving King’s Landing, which has only consolidated his power further. His rise to power isolated his main rival, Cersei, from any allies, but she proves to always have an ace up her sleeve. Margery also seems to have a behind-the-scenes ploy. Until these plans come to fruition, however, The Sparrow’s shadow looms large in Westeros.
5 – Ramsay Bolton
The sadistic bastard is Warden of the North, the largest region in Westeros, and has the support of numerous Northern Lords after helping drive the Ironborn from their lands. He employs Machiavellian tactics to secure his rule, and has the upper hand in numbers over the Snow/Sansa coalition in the upcoming Battle of the Bastards. Not to mention the youngest Stark is held hostage by the slimy torture-lover. A character who is easy to loathe, fans may not enjoy seeing him in a position of power, but he is nonetheless firmly in control of his dominion at this time. True, he seems too evil to let live much longer, and yet these are the types of characters George Martin seems to let thrive the most. Despite Episode 9 seeming like a perfect grave, Ramsay belongs high on the Westeros power scale until he’s placed six feet under.
6 – Jaime Lannister
The recently relieved member of the Kingsguard is a pragmatic leader of the richest house in Westeros. Unable to secure power through his son, King Tommen, he left King’s Landing to besiege Riverrun in support of his allies, the Freys. He is a veteran tactician and respected fighter despite missing his right hand. He has a solid, although apparently disinterested, number two in Bronn. His long term rivals in Dorne are in a stage of upheaval after the assassination of their Prince. He has the military, political, and economic power to defeat almost any challenger.
7 – Tyrion
The exiled dwarf finds himself in Mereen as an adviser to the number three character on our list. His diplomatic abilities are the best in the show, having once served as a historically just Hand to the King, while most recently settling down the rebellion in his new found Mereen home. He has also proven he can scrap during the Battle of Blackwater Bay. He no longer has his illustrious name at his disposal but that has proven to be a mixed bag of fortune in the past. He is the best sidekick in GOT and will go as far as Dany’s conquering army takes him. Should the two reach their goal of the Iron Throne, Tyrion and his brains will keep them there. Oh, and he is the only person besides Daeny who can stand with a dragon without being fried. Tyrion Targaryen?
8 – Daario Naharis
Daario is the unquestioned leader of a mercenary company, the Second Sons, a brave fighter, and Khaleesi’s booty call. Not a bad resume. He is undoubtedly made more powerful by affiliating himself with the Dragon Queen, but he would be on the list regardless due to his own fighting prowess and his army of sellswords. He is the muscle behind the face of Dany and the tongue of Tyrion, and anyone who can draw comparisons to Tom Brady deserves a minimum top-10 placement on this list.
THE UP AND COMERS
9 – Jon Snow
The former Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch is on the precipice of a major move in the rankings. He could either plummet with a defeat at the hands of the Boltons, or skyrocket when he reclaims his ancestral home and restores Stark hegemony in the North. Perhaps he even has #1 overall upside should all the R+L=J / “Prince who was Promised” storylines play out. Still, we are assessing strictly on how Westeros versus just speculation. At this very moment, his rag tag army is not as fearsome as those previously mentioned but he boasts premier leadership and fighting skills. Fan theories remain irrelevant until we see them in action, but Longclaw and Ghost are X factors that land him a respectable #9 ranking and give him among the highest ceilings for future rankings. No ones “Power Stock” is more contigent on the upcoming blockbuster battle than Lord Snow.
‘Although she lost the Kingsmoot, Yara made off with the best ships in the Iron Fleet and has a head start over her uncle Euron in the race to find Khaleesi. She has the unquestioned loyalty of her crew, experience raiding and pillaging, and just picked up a solid number two in a revitalized Theon. If she provides transportation to Westeros for Dany’s enormous army, Yara’s power ranking could skyrocket as a potential Admiral for the newly crowned Dragon Queen. It is just a matter of getting to Mereen before her rival Ironborn do.
11 – Euron Greyjoy
One of the most interesting characters with the least amount of screen time so far in the series, Euron could have the most mobility of anyone in the list save Snow. His treasonous niece and nephew defied the Kingsmoot and caught fair skies and following seas on their way to Essos. Euron seems to be out of luck, but the old salt seems one to have plenty of tricks up his sleeve. Completely amoral, he will do whatever it takes to secure power, and his experience sailing across the world exhibits his guile and determination. He still needs a fleet, but will have the upper hand over Yara if they ever meet in direct combat.
THE MOVERS AND SHAKERS
Drogon deserves a spot on the list because he has proven to have a rebellious mind of his own and his power is not only immense but unique. He can attack via land or air, with his sheer strength, teeth, or fire. He is the largest and strongest of his two siblings and is ridden by the Dragon Queen herself. He has shown loyalty by rescuing his mother from an untimely demise in the fighting pits, and will play a crucial role in the wars to come.
13 – Petyr Baelish a.k.a Littlefinger
Although Littlefinger has secured ultimate influence over the Vale through his control over the abysmal Robyn Arryn, he still offers little physical prowess or military capability. Despite his lack of brute strength or leadership experience, he more than makes up for in Machiavellian cunning and ruthlessness. He will stop at nothing to seize as much power as possible for himself, but he is also smart enough not to out kick his coverage. If he believes the juice is not worth the squeeze he will wait until a more prime opportunity to strike. It is difficult to foresee how much more room for immediate advancement given his various enemies that are climbing the social ladder, but he is always on the alert to advance another rung and has the puppet mastery to one day ascend to a top five spot.
14 – Sansa Stark
Sansa makes the list below her former caretaker because she still needs his assistance even though she could’ve taken lethal vengeance on him earlier in the season. He still has a power over her and until she shakes that, she will not be ranked above him. However, if she is successful in reestablishing a Stark dynasty in the North, she will have improved her position immensely. Unfortunately for her, she has little involvement with the actual taking of Winterfell and the inability to get her hands dirty and control her own fate hurts her in these rankings.
15 – Brienne of Tarth
Brienne is arguably the most chivalrous knight in the series and is powerful enough to defeat the Hound in single combat. She is tirelessly devoted to serving her Lord or Lady and swearing herself to Sansa hitches her to a train that could end up ruling the largest region in Westeros or to an early grave. Her fighting skills prove her a solid character even away from her Lady’s camp and can square up with any fighter she may come across.
ON THE BUBBLE
The Hound – remember, power does not simply mean brute strength. Otherwise The
Hound would’ve jumped to a top two ranking alongside his zombie brother upon his Episode 7 return. Nonetheless, various Red Priests, including Beric Dondarion, have suggested his revival holds tremendous weight, and we have a sneaky feeling The Hound may end up in our top 7 come season’s end.
Varys – once a lock member of the Top 10 due to his gossiping prowess , The Eunuch appears slightly more than a sidekick’s sidekick with Tyrion and Daeny. With Daeny atop these rankings and in a prime position for the top spot, Varys has ties to the right people. It seems just a matter of time before The Master of Whispers is again in a position of major prominence.
Stay tuned for a re ranking next week, as the balance of power is going to see massive shifts following The Battle of the Bastards.
How do you view the Power Balance of Westeros? Major agreements or disagreements? Sound off below!