'Game of Thrones' Final Season: Who Died in the Battle of Winterfell — and Why It Matters

Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 2 - Emilia and Kit - H Publicity 2019
Helen Sloan/HBO

[This story contains spoilers for season eight, episode three of HBO's Game of Thrones, "The Long Night."]

Jon Snow (Kit Harington), Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) and several other Game of Thrones fan-favorite characters walked into the third episode of the final season with their lives intact. Fans walked into the episode fully expecting some of their favorites would not be walking away from the fight — and of course, they were right.

Directed by Miguel Sapochnik ("Hardhome," "Battle of the Bastards") and written by showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss, the Game of Thrones final season's third installment clocked in at a staggering 82 minutes and featured an astounding amount of action as the allied forces of the living took their last stand against the Night King. The result? Copious amounts of bloodshed — much of it playing out exactly as predicted, in ways few people saw coming.

Below, we list out everyone who didn't make it through the night alive — all of the main, named characters, at least. It should go without saying, but in case it doesn't: proceed with extreme caution. Beyond the Stark sisters, an extensive list of the dead awaits. Last chance to turn back.

Still here? Your funeral — or, more accurately, their funerals. Beyond the myriad Dothraki, Unsullied, Northerners, wildlings and wights alike, here are the most notable deaths:

Victim No. 1: Dolorous Edd (Ben Crompton). The acting Lord Commander of the Night's Watch is the first main character killed in the battle against the White Walkers, following the undead's first major assault on the forces of the living. He's stabbed from behind after saving Samwell Tarly (John Bradley); it's a death that mirrors what happened to poor Pyp (Josef Altin) during the Castle Black battle in season four's "Watchers on the Wall." 

Victim No. 2: Lyanna Mormont (Bella Ramsey). The Lady of Bear Island is no more. She doesn't die without a fight, though. She's standing in the way of an undead giant when it bursts through Winterfell. After she's bashed out of the way, Lyanna stands back up and charges at the giant. It grabs her, lifts her up, and makes a crucial mistake: letting Lyanna get too close to his undead face. She drives a dragonglass dagger through the creature's eye, defeating the biggest foe on the battlefield, save for the Night King and the undead Viserion.

Victim No. 3: Beric Dondarrion (Richard Dormer). The Lightning Lord has died many times — and now, his watch has finally, officially ended. Beric does his best to rally courage in the Hound (Rory McCann) throughout the battle, and is most effective when he leads Clegane on a mission to rescue Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) from getting overrun by wights. Beric loses his life on that mission, sacrificing himself to keep her alive. "The Lord brought him back for a purpose," Melisandre (Carice Van Houten) tells Arya when Beric passes. "Now? That purpose has been served."

Victim No. 4: Theon Greyjoy (Alfie Allen). Once the Prince of Winterfell, then Reek, then a hero who stood his ground all the way until his dying breath. He once jumped ship when he couldn't face off against Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbaek). At the end of the line, Theon was more than ready to take on the deadliest foe of them all: the Night King, master of all White Walkers, whom he tried to skewer with a spear. Of course, he didn't survive the showdown, but it's the thought that counts.

Victim No. 5: The Night King. You read that right: the Night King is dead, stabbed in the gut by Arya Stark, using the same Valyrian dagger that was once meant to kill Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright). Chekov would be proud. Since the Night King is dead, that means the entire White Walker army is done, too: Viserion, all the other White Walkers, the Wights — all of them.

Victim No. 6: Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen). He's killed after doing everything in his power to defend Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) once she's surrounded by Wights. He's stabbed multiple times, and yet, he manages to push on right until the bitter end. His death, combined with the death of Lyanna, means we have seen the last of House Mormont.

Victim No. 7: Melisandre (Carice Van Houten). The Red Woman is one of the surprise heroes of the night, showing up to Winterfell right before the battle begins. She arms everyone with fire, guides Arya into the act of killing the Night King and when it's all over, she collapses in a heap outside the gates of Winterfell. The Great War is finally over — which means Melisandre's watch has finally ended.

It's safe to say the Battle at Winterfell didn't play out exactly as expected. Who thought the White Walker war would end midway into the final season of Game of Thrones, and who would have expected Arya to do the deed? But that's exactly what happened — and now, the stage is officially set for the record-smashing fantasy series to move into its final territory: the final war for the Iron Throne.


Read all of THR's Final Path series, featuring character-by-character predictions:

1. Jon Snow
2. Daenerys Targaryen
3. Tyrion Lannister
4. Cersei Lannister
5. Jaime Lannister
6. Sansa Stark
7. Arya Stark
8. Bran Stark
9. Samwell Tarly
10. Theon Greyjoy
11. The Hound
12. Brienne of Tarth
13. Varys
14. Melisandre
15. Davos Seaworth
16. Jorah Mormont
17. Bronn
18. Tormund Giantsbane
19. Beric Dondarrion
20. The Dragons
21. The Night King
22. Across the World of Ice and Fire
23. Final Predictions

Follow THR.com/GameOfThrones for continuing coverage all season long.