Game of Thrones Power Rankings: Dark Wings, Dark Words

margaery-joffrey-episode2Season 3 of Game of Thrones continued with “Dark Wings, Dark Words,” and much to our dismay there were no dragons! If you’re as crushed by this as we were, this Time Warner Cable commercial might bring you back from the ledge. While the second episode lacked three of our top four from last week’s rankings, it also introduced some new characters. The biggest takeaway: Don’t get between a Tyrell and her cheese.

Our rankings are based on developments from each episode in particular, and take factors such as likeability, power and general character attractiveness into consideration. A character must have screen time to make the list. At the end of the day, these are wholly subjective, so if you disagree with any of our assessments — and you’d be wrong — state your case in the comments section below.

One last very important order of business: SPOILER ALERT: The following entries contain information from the most recent episode of Game of Thrones: “Dark Wings, Dark Words” (Season 3, Episode 2).

Not in the episode: Tywin Lannister (previously No. 1), Daenerys Targaryen (previously No. 2), Melisandre (previously No. 4), Bronn (previously No. 6), Jorah Mormont, Dragons, Stannis Baratheon, Littlefinger and Varys.

bran-season-31. Brandon Stark (previously unranked): So, you know all that doomsday talk about George R. R. Martin croaking before he finishes all seven books? We’ve suddenly got a way bigger problem on our hands: If Bran’s character makes it to the end, the actor playing him might be 75 by the time this shit wraps. Do wheelbarrows speed up puberty? How else to explain Bran transforming from a green boy to a man grown in the span of one offseason? Good news for the little lord, though: There’s now a lady in his midst — and she knows how to handle a sword! (Quick aside: Does Bran’s sword still work?) Book readers, rejoice! Meera and Jojen Reed have finally joined up with Bran. Yes, Bran is crippled. Yes, Bran is on the run. Yes, Bran’s family thinks he’s dead. But he’s actually in pretty great shape. For starters, the fact that most people think he’s dead is actually working in his favor, because it decreases the odds that Stark-haters are on his tail. What’s more, he just synced up with a pair of loyal bannermen who are motivated to help him, capable of keeping him safe (Meera) and wise enough to shed some lights on his gifts (Jojen). Speaking of those gifts: Bran’s warg abilities are growing stronger, as are his green dreams. He’s got The Sight, he’s got a badass direwolf and he’s got a guide capable of showing him the way. He’s also presumably got an AARP card waiting in his letterbox, but hey, no one’s perfect. — MR

margaery-season-32. Margaery Tyrell (previously 5): So far in Season 3, we’ve learned three things about Margaery: 1) She has the best rack on the show; 2) she’s an expert manipulator; and 3) she prefers clothing that exposes most if not all of her chest. Keeping this in mind, I’ve decided to nickname her Powertits, which is the only way I’ll refer to her for the rest of this year’s rankings. While that alone would be reason enough to catapult her to the top of our list, Powertits had an episode to remember on Sunday night. Not only did she gain Sansa’s trust through Sansa’s admission that Joffrey is a ‘monster’ — Powertits’ response: Meh — she continued to win over her shit-eating husband-to-be with a combination of cleavage and aggressive crossbow fingering. The scene ended with Bitchking holding Powertits holding a crossbow, which was the equivalent Glen from Mad Men holding Betty holding some Reddi-wip, only way creepier and less fattening. Needless to say, while other characters are getting captured, Powertits’ potential is bursting at the seams. — BG

thoros-of-myr-season-33. Brotherhood Without Banners (previously unranked): In an episode chock-full of new characters, the Brotherhood made as strong an impression as any. When Arya, Gendry and Hot Pie first come across the gang in the woods, the travelers are singing the “Rains of Castamere,” and if we learned anything from Tolkien in fifth-grade G&T English, it’s that songs can hold clues! That’s the Lannister anthem — and the awesome cover from the “Battle of the Blackwater” credits, if you recall — but does that mean these are Lannister men? They’re by definition no one’s bannermen, but do old loyalties die hard? We don’t learn much about these men, other than that the red-bearded dude is Thoros of Myr, the archer is Anguy and they’re collectively quick with a fat joke. The Brotherhood seems to genuinely be more interested in information than in harming the trio, but finding out Arya’s true identity is among the most powerful information a man can come across in the war-torn Seven Kingdoms. What will Thoros and Co. do with that knowledge? What role will the recently captured Hound play? Who’s the leader of this merry band? This episode may have been light on plot, but the Brotherhood brought ample intrigue. — MR

jojen-and-meera-season-34. Jojen and Meera Reed (previously unranked): Episode 2 also introduced us to Jojen and Meera Reed, brother and sister from a house long loyal to the Starks. Here are some facts about the two newest members of crew Little Lords: Jojen possesses a mystic connection with the forest, but the extent of his powers aren’t yet known. When not chasing Joanna through airports, he also enjoys boldly taming massive direwolves (Riggs style) and casually showing up and sharing your bird dreams. Don’t want him to share your dreams? Too bad, you’re sleeping and there’s nothing you can do about it. Meera, meanwhile, is handy with a blade and also curiously resembles a curly haired Yara Greyjoy, which will come in handy if they stumble across some Iron Islanders. She protects her brother while he (presumably) smokes peyote and talks to animals. Their placement in the top five is based largely on potential and intrigue. Jojen has insight into Bran’s powers as a warg and will help him harness them. And by “help him harness them” I mean Jojen has a fat sack of Westeros’ finest peyote and doesn’t mind sharing. Puff puff pass, brother, now let’s go dance with the wolves. — CW

lady-olenna-season-35. Lady Olenna Tyrell (previously unranked): The latest member of House Tyrell to make her debut, Lady Olenna made quite a first impression. And by that, I mean she goaded Sansa into revealing treasonous feelings of hatred, rattled off lines like “All Tyrells’ farts smell like roses” and causally demanded cheese because she was hungry as all hell. Lady Olenna is basically an older, wiser, more cunning version of all these people from this JG Wentworth commercial, except instead of money she wants cheese. Cheese is fucking delicious. While most viewers may respect Lady Olenna for speaking the truth, I respect her for wearing gangsta-quality headwear, a look that’s not easy to pull off for a woman of her age. Oh, and in case you also wanted to know exactly what cheese Lady Olenna eats, it’s Brillat-Savarin. And if you have to look that up, that’s because you’re not on Lady Olenna’s level. — BG

arya-season36. Arya Stark (previously unranked): Arya finally made her return to the screen midway through “Dark Wings, Dark Words,” and she wasted no time demonstrating exactly why she’s such a badass. She’s kind of like the Justin Bieber of Westeros, only instead of making terrible music and generally sucking at life, she makes awesome threats to strangers and whips out castle-forged swords because she can. And instead of being a boy who looks like a girl, she’s a girl who looked like a boy on purpose and now is gradually growing her hair out so she begins to look like a girl again. Which, I think we can all agree, is way better. Arya gains points for fearlessly talking trash to the Brotherhood Without Banners, but she loses others for having The Hound reveal her identity just as she, Hot Pie and Gendry were plotting their escape. But who knows, “Stark bitch” may be one of The Hound’s go-to terms of endearment. I think we can all agree, it might be. — BG

brienne-season37. Brienne of Tarth (previously unranked): Big Bri got some moves! Brienne had solid screen time in Dark Wings, Dark Words, and though she still gets made fun of for being, well, large, she made the Kingslayer her bitch at the end of the ep. At least physically she did. Actually, Jaime Lannister pretty much owned her mentally throughout this portion of their journey. He correctly pointed out that the random traveler recognized him and provided stellar commentary on her decision to cross the bridge instead of the river. Oh, and Jamie managed to steal one of her swords and get free for a bit. Oh, and she got them both captured. OK, so not the greatest episode for the mighty Brienne of Tarth. But still you guys, she totally beat the hell out of one of the best swords in Westeros! And can we talk about this sexual tension between Bri and Jaime? As George Costanza once pointed out, the only thing better than prison sex is fugitive sex. So they’ll probably bang in the prison cell, and if Jamie doesn’t bash her head in with a rock like his last cell-mate, they’re sure to escape and then get freaky on the lam. Or not. — CW

tyrion-season-38. Tyrion Lannister (previously 9): What’s better than upgrading from the dungeons to a royal suite? BLOWJOBS!!! The lack of boobs in Season 3 has been a terrible development. Shae, Dany, Margaery and Talisa all got various degrees of naked in Seasons 1 and 2, yet all we’ve seen so far is random pair of tits that Bronn was trying nibble on (damn that cock-blocking Podrick). While Tyrion didn’t help us in this category directly, the guy is definitely riding high after getting surprised with a grade-A blowie that probably should have landed him No. 1 on this list. “You can’t come here anymore,” Tyrion said, worried about his love’s safety. “It’s not my coming you should worry about,” Shae replied in her best McLovin voice as she started to assume the position. There are few better pick-me-ups for a man hard on his luck than a head-back, I’ll-shut-my-mouth-if-you-open-yours blowjob in standing formation. Yes, that he was standing matters, because, duh, a standing ovation is better than a regular ovation. Yes, Shae silenced Tyrion like a champ. And yes, Tyrion is currently the happiest man in King’s Landing. — CW

joffrey-season39. Joffrey Baratheon (previously 10): Everyone’s most hated Bitchking was at his bitchiest this week, but he moves out of the bitch spot because he wasn’t getting tortured or being fat. That said, I have to give Joff credit for emerging as a fashion icon, telling Cersei to fuck off and being a deadeye shooter with a crossbow. Life is good when you’re set to wed Powertits. And if his “All these are wrong” line regarding his clothing wasn’t enough — he rightfully wanted to rock royal Zubaz — Joff capped the episode by asking Powertits, “Do you want to hold it?” before cradling his betrothed (and crossbow) in his tiny, prepubescent arms. Was this compelling TV? Absolutely. Do I want to watch it again? No, because Joffrey is gross and thinking about him thinking about sex makes me shower, listen to Nickelback and eat Raisin Bran without milk. — BG

10. We tend to reserve the 10 spot for the biggest bitch of the episode, but this week more than one character deserved the (dis)honor. So, bonus bitches, bitches.

theon-season-310a. Theon Greyjoy (previously unranked): Look who’s alive! Look who’s begging for mercy! Look who’s getting his fingernails flayed off and a screw twisted through his foot! Man, if Theon’s a bitch, what does that make the heaping pile of karma he just got served? Theon’s captors remain a mystery, but his circumstances are as clear as his betrayal.

sam-season-310b. Samwell Tarly (previously unranked): Oh, Piggy. You forgot to send the ravens, you’re still letting yourself get bullied on the brink of the zombie apocalypse and you’re crying to your brothers in arms about getting left behind. What happened to being the sword in the darkness? What happened to being the watcher on the wall? The Old Bear had to tell you he forbids you to die, which is so much less awesome than Bane saying you have his permission to die. Why do you ruin everything? Stop crying, start walking and don’t fucking die.

hot-pie-season-310c. Hot Pie (previously unranked): Because ‘Hot Pie’ wasn’t a demeaning enough nickname, Arya’s rotund travelmate now has a new moniker: Fat Boy. Why? Well for starters, he’s a boy. What’s more, he’s very fat. See, it’s quite apt. Raise your hand if you thought Hot Pie was going to jump at the Thoros’ offer for warm stew and bread? Fat Boy surprised us all by holding his ground and standing tall — until an arrow threatened to pierce his plump pumpkin head, of course. On the bright side, Hot Pie hasn’t pissed his pants since midway through Season 2. Definite progress. — MR

On The King’s Road

Sansa Stark: Is Sansa finally ready to ruffle some feathers? By scheming with Littlefinger last week and calling Joff “a monster” this week, it certainly seems that way. Of course, she may have just downed one too many lemon cakes and immediately thrown her mental filter and inhibitions to the wind. Because who hasn’t been there, am I right? — BG

Jaime Lannister: The Kingslayer may be a filthy and malnourished mess, but his wit is as fresh as ever, as he showed by loosing a slew of mean-spirited but hilarious barbs Brienne’s way. You know what might have kept Renly on the Iron Throne, Brienne? If it had been made of cocks! Burn! Jaime also earns points for warning Brienne about the farmer and for swiping one of Brienne’s swords. But he loses those points and then some for getting schooled by a girl. And for, you know, getting captured by the Boltons. — MR

Jon Snow and the Wildlings: Dibs on this for a band name! The lack of screen time kept those north of the Wall south of our Power Rankings, but they get honorable mention here due mainly to Ygritte’s school-girl bully attempts to hide her affection for Jon. He’s just a big dumb idiot who’s never seen a giant or a warg or laid with a girl. Will you two get wild already so we can put you back in the top 10? — CW

Robb Stark: Robb’s hair is so great, his wife wants to make out with him even after she tells him he stinks. But that’s about the only thing going right for the Young Wolf. He’s forced to delay battle in order to march to Riverrun for his grandfather’s funeral; he’s taking crazy lip from defiant bannerman Rickard Karstark; and he now knows Winterfell is a crispy ruin, Theon is in the wind and brothers Bran and Rickon might be dead. At least his mother is cheerful, helpful and trustworthy. Oh, wait… — MR

Catelyn Stark: And the winner of this week’s Debbie Downer award goes to … Cat! The Stark matriarch was not only supremely depressing in her conversation with Talisa, but she managed to place the blame for every one of the family’s extensive mishaps squarely on her shoulders. Talk about a buzzkill. Remind me not to invite Cat to any parties this summer, because no one likes the moody older chick who sits in the corner making voodoo dream-catchers while complaining that her dead husband cheated on her nearly 20 years ago. — BG

Talisa Stark: Forget that Season 2 sob story about the drowning brother and the slave; NOW we know why Talisa really crossed the Narrow Sea. Westeros is full of “grim bearded stinking barbarians!” At least she found a grim and bearded Westerosi with a kingdom and incredible hair. — MR

Cersei Lannister: Powertits is in Cersei’s head, and it’s totally eroding the Queen Regent’s judgment. To wit: Cersei joked that Joff’s bride-to-be could fashion a dress out of a napkin-sized square of fabric. Puh-lease. It needs to be at least … three times that size. Cersei is an aging vet on an expiring contract, while Powertits is an up-and-coming prospect getting ready to enter her prime. As LSU football coach and known prophet Les Miles might say, Cersei just doesn’t have the “chest.” — BG

The Hound: Even with half his face burnt off, the Hound still has good enough peripheral vision to spot “the Stark bitch” trying to sneak past him. No sign yet if he will try to woo Little Bird Jr. after his burning pursuit of Sansa fell sadly short. — CW

Shae: So far, Shae has disproven Tyrion’s logic that she can’t fuck her way out of everything. Plus she gives the BEST BLOWIES EVER! And she gets bonus points for watching out for Sansa. And did we mention she gives the BEST BLOWIES EVER!? — CW

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