Games of Thrones’ Magnificent Seven

A look at the King in the North and his band of misfits who went on a suicide mission to capture a wight beyond the wall.

By AT&T Digital Media Productions editorial team 


At the end of “Eastwatch,” Game of Thrones fans saw Jon Snow assemble a crack team of desperadoes and begin a treacherous journey into the frozen lands beyond the Wall. Their mission: capture a wight and prove to all the doubters that the Army of the Dead is real. Jon’s wight hunters are some of the most battle-tested fighters and colorful personalities in Westeros, though some haven’t been around for a couple seasons. Let’s run down the roster of wayward warriors that trekked through the Great Wight North.


1. Jon Snow, the Bastard Leader

The King in the North’s tried-and-true hero’s journey sticks out in this show about moral gray areas and clouded motivations. Humble birth? Check. Mysterious parentage? Check. Prodigious ascension to a position of leadership, beautiful sad eyes that go on for days? Check, check, check. Jon’s got it all, plus a pet wolf and a magic sword.

Though his commitment to the Night’s Watch ended with his first death, Jon knows that the fate of mankind still depends on holding the North against the White Walkers. So far, he hasn’t persuaded many southern lords to set aside their political squabbles and fight the real enemy.


2. Tormund Giantsbane, the Loose Canon

Tormund is a wildling born north of the Wall and conditioned to hate the Night’s Watch. Like all free folk, he takes pride in his autonomy: life is harsh beyond the Wall, but at least he’s never had to bend the knee. For the sake of the free folk, Tormund has pledged to fight alongside Jon to save the North, manning the garrison at Eastwatch-By-The-Sea. His knowledge of the terrain proved invaluable to Jon’s mission, as did his berserker moves on the battlefield.


3. Gendry, the Young Gun

Gendry is King Robert Baratheon’s bastard, the only known surviving member of the Baratheon line. He’s been in hiding from Cersei, who tried to wipe out Robert’s bastards to protect her children’s claim to the throne, and Melisandre, who had a bad habit of sacrificing royal kids in blood magic ceremonies. But he’s tired of living in fear: it’s time to join the fight he’s been preparing for.

Like his father, Gendry doesn’t beat around the bush. He’s got his warhammer ready to go, he revealed his royal paternity to Jon right away (forging an instant bastard-to-bastard bond), and he didn’t hesitate for a second to join the War for the Dawn. As an eager volunteer joining a band of hardened soldiers, it looks like his youthful vitality came in handy already.


4. Sandor Clegane, the Reformed Criminal

The Hound spent most of his career working for the Lannister mafia as a hired sword. He killed countless innocents on the orders of bratty King Joffrey, which proved regrettable even for a hate-filled nihilist. But he deserted the Lannisters after the Battle of Blackwater and began a slow journey toward redemption, which culminated in joining the Brotherhood without Banners to fight the White Walkers.

Though the Hound has a new lease on life, a new mission, and a new distaste for wanton peasant murder, he may be secretly holding on to his former sole desire: to kill his brother the Mountain. We can’t wait for him to make it back for Cleganebowl.


5. Beric Dondarrion, the Fanatic

Back in Season 1, Ned Stark dispatched Lord Dondarrion to apprehend Ser Gregor Clegane for war crimes in the Riverlands. It didn’t exactly work out; the Mountain impaled Beric through the chest with a lance, killing him instantly. But the Red God had other plans for the Lightning Lord. The red priest Thoros of Myr performed a ritual that resurrected Beric, surprising Thoros and making Beric an instant convert.

Beric’s soldiers rebranded as the Brotherhood without Banners, a group of populist agitators dedicated to undermining the Lannister army and protecting the smallfolk (yes, they rob from the rich and give to the poor). As the leader of the Brotherhood, Beric has been killed many times, and each time Thoros brings him back. All those resurrections have taken a toll: Beric has lost large chunks of his memory and personality. Now, he lives to serve the Lord of Light, and he’s convinced that the best way to do that is to fight the White Walkers.


6. Thoros of Myr, the Pyrotechnics Expert

Rest in peace Thoros of Myr, the ultimate drunken Westerosi priest. Thoros was a lackadaisical servant of the Red God who became a devoted servant of the Red God after channeling the Lord of Light’s power to resurrect Beric.

Thoros remained surprised and awed at the power he wielded in the name of the Red God, and doubled down on his faith and the cause of the Brotherhood without Banners. Thoros’ repeated success reviving Beric is also what convinced Melisandre to try the ritual on Jon Snow, so we owe him a lot.

In his apostate days, Thoros engineered a cool trick to light a sword on fire, which Beric still employs for the shock and awe factor. He will be missed.   


7. Jorah Mormont, the Old-Timer

Exiled from Westeros and stripped of his “Ser” for selling slaves, ex-Lord of Bear Island Jorah Mormont spent the last few years in Essos, where he became one of Daenerys Targaryen’s most trusted advisors. Daenerys exiled him for reporting on her movements to King Robert, briefly allowed him back into the fold for good behavior, and exiled him again after he contracted greyscale (bringing his lifetime banishments to three, which has gotta be a record).

Against all odds, Jorah was cured thanks to Samwell Tarly’s experimental treatment at the Citadel, and he returned to Dragonstone to serve his beloved Khaleesi. He volunteered for Jon’s mission to Eastwatch shortly thereafter, presumably in a last-ditch effort to impress Daenerys (sorry dude, it’s never gonna happen).

Once upon a time, Jorah was a fearsome fighter who fought in Robert’s Rebellion and helped squash another by Balon Greyjoy. He’s a true Northman, and while Jon Snow now wields his family’s ancestral Valyrian steel sword, Longclaw, Jorah still has a few good swings left in him.

Of course, even an army of Ser Arthur Daynes would have their backs against the Wall trying to tangle with the Night King. Now that this unlikely band of brothers succeeded, sans one, will Jon have a snowball’s chance in Dorne after capturing his undead trophy?


Find out on Game of Thrones, airing Sundays exclusively on HBO.

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