Game of Thrones: Ranking the Seasons

This past summer I rewatched all the episodes for each season of Game of Thrones. Most episodes are good if not great. Though there are some seasons that are better than others.

Also, even the worst season of Game of Thrones is better than some of the best seasons of other TV shows. Here we go!

  1. Season Five

Season five has memorable episodes like “Sons of the Harpy,” “Hardhome” and the season finale “Mother’s Mercy” which has Cersei’s walk of atonement and Jon’s murder.

I’m not really a big fan of the season’s penultimate episode “The Dance of Dragons.” Dany riding Drogon is cool and Shireen’s death was sad but compared to the penultimate episodes of other seasons, “The Dance of Dragons” was a letdown. Also, a lot of this episode was setting up things for “Mother’s Mercy,” a better episode.

Season Five also has a slow start and things don’t get exciting until “Sons of the Harpy.” The season also has the controversial episode “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken” which has Ramsay rape Sansa while Theon/Reek watches. Some people consider this to be the worst episode of the series.

I’m not sure if I would go that far but season five is definitely one of the worst seasons of Game of Thrones. Overall, still a good season of television though.

  1. Season Seven

Unlike, other seasons, season seven has only seven episodes. This helps and hurts this season. One of the reasons I put it above season five is because at least this season is shorter and takes less of your time.

There are still memorable episodes like “The Queen’s Justice,” “The Spoils of War” and “The Dragon and the Wolf.” This season is enjoyable in that there are several large action set pieces.

It also ends several storylines built up from previous seasons. The best part of this season though may be that it has many reunions and first-time meetings for characters.

Though this season may be too fast pace as it focuses more on character rather than plot. There’s not an equal balance of the two. The biggest death of this season was Littlefinger yet the plot that led to his death was very weak and unreasonable.

Another big death is Viserion who died in “Beyond the Wall,” the penultimate episode. This is probably the worst penultimate episode of the series. For me where it fails the most is shock.

Yes, Viserion (one of Daenerys’s lesser dragons) dies but this episode had so many fan favorite characters together and only Thoros dies. Benjen dies too, after briefly saving and reuniting with Jon but his death just made me wish they would have killed someone else even more.

Hopefully, the people who survived this episode will have bigger character moments in season eight or season seven might become the worst season of Game of Thrones for me.

  1. Season Two

Season two has a great beginning with episodes like the season premiere “The North Remembers” and “What is Dead May Never Die.” Sadly, the middle kinda drags on and the season isn’t great again until its end with episodes like the penultimate “Blackwater” and the season finale “Valar Morguhilis.”

Season two is better than seasons five and seven because it’s less disappointing and boring. It’s middle is its weakest part but that tends to be the case with Game of Thrones seasons.

  1. Season Three

However, the best part of season three is its middle and it has the best middle of all the seasons. In the middle of the third season for Games of Thrones, there are unforgettable episodes such as “And Now His Watch Has Ended,” “Kissed by Fire” and “The Climb.”

Within these three episodes, there are huge key moments of the series. There’s Varys’s story to Tyrion about how he became a eunuch, the murder of Lord Commander Mormont by his own men, Jon climbs the wall and Varys and Littlefinger debate whether chaos is a ladder or a pit.

There’s even more: Thoros brings back Beric from the dead after the Hound kills him in a duel, Jon breaks his Night’s Watch vows by having sex with Ygritte (he also loses his virginity) and Jaime tells Brienne why he broke his vow and killed King Aerys.

The middle of this seasons is a standout but it also has a great end with “Second Sons” and the penultimate episode “The Rains of Castamere” (aka The Red Wedding episode).

Sadly, this season probably has the worst season finale in the series, “Mhysa.” It just doesn’t live up to the previous episode (if that was even possible) and mainly exists to provide closure to season three storylines.

  1. Season One

Season one has a great start with its first two episode: the series premiere “Winter is Coming” and “The Kingsroad.” (I bet in season 8 there’s an episode called “Winter is Here”)

The beginning of Game of Thrones introduces characters we will grow to love, hate and mourn. However, after the first two episodes, the episodes are relatively slow and lackluster until the latter half of the season.

The seasons really picks up with episode six “A Golden Crown” (the death of Viserys) and episode seven “You Win or You Die” (Robert dies and Littlefinger betrays Ned).

And then the season ends with some of the most unforgettable moments of the series. The penultimate episode “Baelor” ends with the death of Ned Stark who lies to save his family and is still executed. The season finale “Fire and Blood” ends with Daenerys now in possession of three baby dragons.

  1. Seasons Six

Season six breaks the trend of the older seasons of Game of Thrones not being as good as earlier seasons. (hopefully season eight does the same)

This season has the best beginning of any season of Game of Thrones. It doesn’t wait to have Jon Snow revived and episodes like “Home” and “Oathbreaker” are standouts.

The surprises slow down in the middle but this season also has the best episode to ever happen during the middle of a season of Game of Thrones, “The Door.” (HOLD THE DOOR, HODOR, are you still crying)

Season six also has one of the best endings of a Game of Thrones season with two of the best episodes of the series, its penultimate episode “Battle of the Bastards” and its season finale “The Winds of Winter.”

In these two episodes, Sansa, Cersei, and Arya all get revenge. Jon (who isn’t Ned’s son) is appointed the King in the North and Daenerys finally goes to Westeros.

However, as a whole season, there is still weakness in season six.

  1. Season Four

In season four, there is barely weakness. This season is a 9.99 out of 10.

This season has an intense and satisfying beginning with the death of King Joffrey in episode two, “The Lion and the Rose.” It might make you almost forget that the Red Wedding happened three episodes ago.

The pace of this season continues to shine with episode four “Oathkeeper” which reveals that the Lady of Thorns and Littlefinger were behind Joffrey’s death. This episode also has Jaime spite Cersei as he sends Brienne to find and protect Sansa.

Then there’s episode six “The Laws of Gods and Men” that keeps the thrills of this season fully alive. Yara Greyjoy tries to save Theon/Reek but he chooses to stay with Ramsay. But the key moment of this episode is Tyrion’s reaction to Shae’s betrayal.

Season six has a strong ending but season four has the best ending of all the Game of Thrones seasons. The last three episodes of this season are “The Mountain and the Viper,” “The Watchers on the Wall” and “The Children.”

In these three episodes, death never ends. There’s the death of Oberyn Martell, almost the Mountain, the deaths of many of Jon’s Night’s Watch friends and Ygritte’s death. There’s still more.

Jojen Reed dies, Tyrion kills his father Tywin and his love Shae and the Hound almost dies from battling with Brienne. He even asks Arya to kill him but she chooses to let him bleed out. (I can’t wait for their reunion in season eight).

Season four didn’t refrain from the betrayals, character development and the deaths from the beginning to the end of the season. This is why out of all the Game of Thrones seasons, this one sits on the Iron Throne.

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