Welcome back to Thee Game of Thrones Character Tournament, the tournament formerly known as “Trial by Combat! The Game of Thrones Character Tournament.” When we started this tournament we took the gamble that a somewhat misleading title would be offset by some in-post explanation. When Round 1 voting began, we tried to make clear that votes should go to your favorite character in the matchup and not “who would win in a one-on-one fight.” I think that message was clear through Rounds 1 and 2 based on the results we saw (Sam Tarly over Khal Drago, Shireen Baratheon over Alliser Thorne, etc). So by Round 3, I was confident that people knew what was up and were having fun with the tournament. We had a huge spike in participation from Rounds 2 and 3, and I probably didn’t lay out the voting criteria enough for new people who jumped in on Round 3. During Round 3 I received some feedback from people confused about what their votes meant, no doubt because of the confusing title and the lack of explanation in Round 3.
So just to be clear, in each matchup vote for your favorite character. I’ve added a special bonus round for anyone strictly interested in violence. Based on the Round 3 results, it looks like enough people understood how they were voting. I doubt most people think Arya could beat Mance Rayder in a one-on-one fight, even with water dancing and her developing facelessness. And I’d guess that most people would root for Jaime Lannister, The Hound, and Davos Seaworth over Margaery Tyrell, Loras Tyrell and Stannis the child-burner. I was sad to see Tyrion Lannister bow out of the tournament this early but Bronn is one of the shows most fun and purely entertaining characters.
Two of the major families remain. After Tyrion lost to his semi-loyal sellsword Bronn, only Jaime remains for the Lannisters. Arya is the last Stark holding on, even as she threatens to lose her name in the show. Both Jaime and Arya are #2 seeds but Arya faces the tougher Round 4 matchup. She squares off against Jon Snow, the last #1 seed in the tournament. Meanwhile Jaime faces Arya’s former riding partner The Hound. The Meereen region is down to two trusty second-in-commands as Davos Seaworth and Jorah Mormont fight to face Arya or Jon in the semi-final. Davos and Jorah both maintain complicated relationships with the would-be-rulers they follow and this week’s episode may expose more cracks in these foundations. The final spot in the tournament semi-finals will go to either Bronn of Drogon the Dragon. Drogon slipped into Round 4 with a much tighter win than the last two rounds.
Round 4 voting is below! Round 5 Starts tomorrow. Remember to vote for your favorite character. And vote in the bonus round below!
Bonus Round! 16 enter, 1 leaves.
The following list of characters suddenly find themselves in Daznak’s Pit in Meereen. They are told they must all fight to the death until only one man stands. If they refuse to fight, Drogon will come and burn down the Arena with them in it. Even if two characters pull a Hunger Games at the end and refuse to fight, Drogon comes for them.
Each character is given one non-living weapon and armor (including oneshield) of their choosing. Characters are as they appear in the show, at their peak. Meaning they are all alive, un-greyscaled, un-Qyburned, and with all of their limbs attached. No escape is allowed. The fight is at noon. Poison-tipped blades are allowed. Wildfire is not.No bow and arrows. No crossbows. No replacement weapons are allowed although characters can use the weapons of fallen characters. Or they can steal them from each other if they want.
Basically, they are trapped in an arena and have to fight to the death. Who would win? The winner will be announced when Round 5 starts.