Place Your Bets: Putting Odds on Our Favorite Game of Thrones Season 8 Predictions

Thanks to a touch of dragon’s fire, the Army of the Dead has breached the wall at Eastwatch. Jon Snow, er, Aegon Targaryen, thinks he has united Westeros to repel their invasion. Meanwhile, he is having carnal relations with Daenerys, who also happens to be his aunt, and the two each have a rightful claim to the Iron Throne.

But while one incestuous relationship blossoms, another withers when Jamie Lanaster peels himself from his sister Queen Cersei’s bed. He has decided to join the coming fight against the Night King and his minions. His move comes after she reveals her alliance with the King of the North and Daenerys against the dead is merely another ploy to gain more power in the Seven Kingdoms.

Will Cersei’s subterfuge and employment of the mercenary Golden Company help her achieve her ends? Will Jon Snow’s amorous alliance with Daenerys be enough to repel the 100,000 reanimated human, horse, giant and dragon corpses streaming southward to destroy the world of the living? Is Theon Greyjoy finally going to grow a spine and lead his men to save Yara?

If this series has taught us anything, it’s not to bet on what you think will happen next—you’ll likely be sorely mistaken. Even applying math to it won’t necessarily help that much: a network science PhD candidate in Budapest gave Littlefinger even odds for being killed before the season 7 finale, correctly predicting Tyene Sand’s demise but also giving much better odds of Daenerys, Grey Worm and Arya Stark getting the axe. And since the HBO series has moved past the storyline in the books written by George R. R. Martin, there’s no source that can give us viewers a clue of our favorite characters’ fates in the upcoming final season. But that doesn’t mean the show’s fans haven’t been trying to channel a little three-eyed raven to impute the future.

Collider has compiled a thoughtful list of predictions based on clues from the books and the show. We’ve taken a look at put some odds on a few of them, based on a methodology with a solid foundation in absolutely nothing. So, here we go:

Bran saves the day by warging a dragon

Isaac Hempstead Wright. Photo: Helen Sloan/courtesy of HBO​

Prediction: Using his abilities to tap into animals’ senses and control them, Bran takes the helm of one of Daenerys’s dragons to wreak havoc on the marching dead and other enemies of house Stark. Is it possible for him to warg reanimated animals? If so, could he commandeer Viserion in service to the living?

Comment: Please, oh please, series creators David Benioff and Dan Weiss, let this come to pass. Not just because of the poetic justice of paralyzed Bran flying through the air and raining fire on the Night King, but for the love of the Lord of Light because we want this narrative thread to go somewhere. We’ve been watching Bran getting yanked and carried from Winterfell, across the wall and back again throughout the series, and we hope it’s not just to reveal the backstory of the Children of the Forest and the Night King.

Odds: 7:1

Two houses rise again

John Bradley, Jim Broadbent. Photo: Helen Sloan/courtesy of HBO​

Prediction: The Baratheon and Tarly houses are reinstated in the pantheon of ruling families through Gendry and Samwell, who both perform heroically in the coming war between the living and the dead.

Comment: Sam has now broken ranks with the Night’s Watch and left his maester studies in Oldtown to aid Jon Snow. He aspires to greater things, and he is smart and insightful enough to achieve them. Meanwhile, Gendry, Robert Baratheon’s bastard son and sole heir, has popped back into the series, his destiny and newfound abilities with a war hammer itching to bring his family back into the fore. Why else would Benioff and Weiss have brought him back?

Odds: 2:5

Tyrion cuts a deal

Peter Dinklage. Photo: Helen Sloan/courtesy of HBO​

Prediction: Tyrion Lannister, hand to Queen Daenerys, has secretly made an arrangement with his sister, Queen Cersei, when he visits with her alone after the meeting with Daenerys and Jon Snow falls apart. Could he have struck a deal with her that throws Jon Snow under the bus and sets the two queens on more equal footing?

Comment: There was a lot of shady stuff that went down as soon as Tyrion went to visit his sister after the meeting. Their distance seemed to dwindle after he offered his regret for the deaths of her children. And he was throwing some serious eye shade as he began catching on to Jon and Daenerys’s growing affection. What was the deal with him creeping outside their door as the two of them were getting it on?

Plus, Business Insider asked finale director Jeremy Powdesa about behavior that could be read as Tyrion’s jealousy about Jon getting the girl whom he coveted. He said, “Jealousy is too simple, in a way. I think what’s really going on here for me is that Tyrion is a strategist. He’s somebody who thinks to the future and what the consequences of things are. For him, the union of Dany and Jon is a bit of a monkey wrench in terms of the plan for how they’re going to move forward in a united front against the army of the dead.”

Odds: 1:2

The Night King’s purpose

Vladimir Furdik. Photo: courtesy of HBO​

Prediction: The Night King is leading his army to a lake where powerful knowledge or magic could help him start an endless winter. He’s not going to make it.

Comment: Though the entire series has turned a bit from clan fighting to the external, existential threat posed by the Army of the Dead, we’re still in the dark about the Night King’s intentions. Why did he choose now to attack? Where is he going? Over at Nerdist, they break down one intriguing fan prediction: that the Night King is marching to a lake in the Riverlands called God’s Eye, where the Children of the Forest and the First Men signed a piece treaty thousands of years ago. Since Game of Thrones is only slated for another six episodes until its series finale, we don’t think the show’s creators will end it on humanity’s defeat and the start of another Long Night. Somehow, the concerted efforts of our heroes will stop him and they can go back to their pointless intraspecies bloodletting.

Odds: 25:1

Featured image: Emilia Clarke. Photo courtesy of HBO


Michael Keller

Michael Keller reports from the frontiers of science, technology, and international affairs. His work has appeared online and in newspapers, magazines, and books, including the graphic novel Charles Darwin's "On the Origin of Species." He was also part of a team that won the Pulitzer Prize for reporting for the Sun Herald, Biloxi, Miss., for its valorous and comprehensive coverage of Hurricane Katrina.