"Game of Thrones" has a lot of characters, and too many to rank. So we're just going to focus on the 49 characters who are or were the most important, in our humble opinion. If you don't like our list, Littlefinger will poison your wedding cake. (Many spoilers, obviously.)
49. Viserys Targaryan
A total jackass, Viserys had maybe the best death in the whole series: having molten gold dumped on his head.
Who? (I feel bad for this joke after season 6, but I'm going to leave it)
47. Robb Stark
The Red Wedding was a coming of age for viewers of the show. Rewatching those early seasons knowing that's gonna happen exposes Robb for the lame dude he really is.
Basically a stodgy, moralistic Southern Baptist minister. I'm from Alabama, so I was pulling for him.
45. Bran Stark
Needs to work on his pouty face and grow out his hair if he wants to be the new Jon Snow.
44. Roose Bolton
He's like the Count Dooku of this show, acting like he's working for himself though he's really just a pawn who probably will get his head cut off by young Darth Vader.
Was a hot blond dude, but now (after a casting change) is just a regularly attractive brown-haired dude who was banished from Dany's bed because who cares about love anyway?
42. Ned Stark
The Mark Twain of the show, giving his kids a bunch of advice that wasn't actually useful before he got murdered. Wait, how did Mark Twain die? This analogy may not track all the way but whatever.
Oh man. Remember that time the cake was too dry and it made his eyes bug out and his face turn purple and he spit foamy red drool everywhere? Hilarious.
Did what she needed to survive, until it turned out doing what she needed to do to survive (hooking up with Tywin Lannister) got her killed.
Not the most decisive king, either before or after he had sex. But he's better than Joffrey, I guess.
38. Khal Drogo
Got fridged for the sake of Daenerys' character arc. Beautiful.
Melisandre put a leech on his penis one time. It feels like that's all I should put here.
I'm still pulling for his post-castration power play. Or for him to just get killed already.
35. Jorah Mormont
Really sad because he still can't afford to buy Khaleesi's love.
34. King Robert
Probably the most chill and carefree character on the show, drunk most of the time, yelling a lot even though he really didn't have any problems. Well, until that time he drank too much and got killed by a boar.
33. Ramsey Bolton
Is Ramsey the most demented dude on this show? Well, he's definitely the funniest demented dude, which isn't actually funny at all when you think about it.
32. Catelyn Stark
Loses to the Lannisters both in the Game of Thrones and the Game of Angsty Overprotective Moms.
31. Talisa Stark
Every joke that comes to mind is far too reprehensible even for a "Game of Thrones" list, so I'm not going to put one here.
A huge nerd who predictably finds love in a house of somebody else's daughter-wives.
29. Lord Commander Mormont
Died because Sam found love in a house of somebody else's daughter-wives.
A marksman with a bow, loved Jon Snow, killed by a child. She was basically an audience surrogate.
Doesn't know anything except for all the stuff Sam doesn't know how to do. Which is most things.
26. The High Sparrow
He tried pulling a huge awesome gambit, but ultimately he was not prepared for the Game as well as he thought, judging by how hard Cersei outplayed him.
25. Red Viper
His irascible lust distracted him from delivering the killing blow against the Mountain. He would be much, much higher on this list were it not for that glaring oversight.
24. The Hound
Killed the butcher's boy, then spent several seasons saying lots of mean things before being left to die on a rock. If his redemption arc goes well he might get a bump.
23. Jaime Lannister
Can I make a joke about masturbating with your off hand? There's nothing in our style guide about that. Anyway, where's the scene where Jaime learned how to do that?
22. Jaqen H'ghar
Speaks in riddles, has many faces (and many bodies), and set Arya on the path to losing her eyesight even though he would have been burned alive if she hadn't saved him. What a clown.
21. Tywin Lannister
Was killed by his hated dwarf son. Exactly what he deserved, though I secretly hoped he would at some point just be nice to his kids.
20. Ellaria Sand
Committed one of the greatest and most upsetting murders on the whole show.
19. Tormund Giantsbane
Has a great name, murder in his heart and a huge beautiful red beard. Also he was in "Fate of the Furious," the latest movie in my favorite film franchise. What's not to like?
18. Jon Snow
Well, he's dead. King of the dead ones. Definitely not coming back ever. No longer dead. Murdered a particularly irritating character. Could stand to be less nice, though.
17. Euron Greyjoy
We can't help but appreciate the (no pun intended) joy with which Euron enacts his villainy. "I AM THE STORM!" Hahaha.
Shoulda been named "Meme." (Another joke I feel about bad about after season 6. I moved him way up in compensation.)
15. Margaery Tyrell
Delightfully passive-aggressive toward Cersei all the time. Sure, she was killed horribly by Cersei because she made a classic "Game of Thrones" miscalculation -- and I really should bump her down for that -- but, nah, she was too much fun.
Tall, kills a lot of men, is single and celibate, takes no crap from anyone and doesn't play the game. A perfect counter to basically everything else on "Game of Thrones."
13. Tyrion Lannister
Thinks with his penis. Which is okay because his penis is so smart.
Slightly smarter than Tyrion because he doesn't have a penis.
Lots of people think of Melisandre as the "sexy" main character, but she's actually the "terrifying" main character. Remember that time she burned a child alive? That sucked. Now she suffers for it, finally, but she'll probably be back to do something amazing. Still waiting, though.
"All men must die. But we are not men." Any questions?
9. Davos Seaworth
Easily the MVP of season 7.
Probably the smartest character on the show, but uses all that brainpower for evil. So he's great, is what I'm saying.
Commits most of the best murders on the show, thanks to those dragons and her invulnerability to fire. and they're usually justified. Big bonus points for that.
6. Arya Stark
Never underestimate this faceless woman.
5. Olenna Tyrell
Makes a great joke about useless genitals, and constantly talks smack about everyone. And she got the absolute last word in her death scene. My dream woman.
4. Sansa Stark
A lot of viewers still underestimate here even now in season 7, thinking she's playing right into Littlefinger's hand rather than having her own plan for dealing with his machinations. Ludicrous.
Enters the show in the most "Game of Thrones" way possible: by stepping out of the background of a scene to kill a guy for Tyrion.
2. Grey Worm
Just the best. Sad because his life sucks. Badass who kills a lot of his problems. Communicates a lot without saying much. Grey Worm seems like the kind of tragic "Game of Thrones" character who is going to have a brief moment of triumph before getting slaughtered. I hope that triumph is really good.
Yeah, she's a terrible person, but she's the product of a terrible father and terrible environment. Through season 7, though, she's been better than everyone else at playing the game, even though every move she's made has had some kind of awful unintentional consequence for people she cares about. We'll see if she can maintain this spot as the endgame approaches, however.