Warning: Spoilers ahead.
When you play the Game of Thrones, you either win or you die. But for us spectators of the great game of Westeros, the fun is guessing who is going to die.
Cersei Lannister? Absolutely.
Jon Snow? Seems right, but we hope not.
Tormund? Dude will be lucky to get past the second episode.
Those were some of the predictions made at Saturday's Talk the Thrones event at South by Southwest. The Ringer's Chris Ryan, Mallory Rubin and Jason Concepcion weighed in on what to expect in the Game of Thrones' upcoming final season.
But the conversation's tone approached mourning, as the show's impending conclusion draws near.
"It is scary," Rubin said. "These are characters we have grown attached to."
It certainly has been a long journey for Ryan as well as Rubin and Concepcion, who host the Ringer's Binge Mode podcast. All three were also involved in HBO's short-lived After the Thrones show that migrated to Twitter as Talk the Thrones after cancellation.
And it's been a long journey for the Game of Thrones characters. Who would of guessed the character that pushed a boy out a window in the show's first episode would now be a fan favorite?
Jaime's character arc is one of many acts of subversion that has elevated Game of Thrones from a run-of-the-mill fantasy show to an event — a gasp-worthy Twitter frenzy of "OMGs" and "WTFs" that began with the beheading of Ned Stark and hit a bloody crescendo with the shocking and legendary Red Wedding.
"We are always in awe of those experiences that people experience collectively," Ryan said of the Red Wedding. "It felt like something that altered the trajectory of television."
"Just the fact that we are sitting here thinking maybe the Night King could end up on the throne" showed how the Game of Thrones' subverting traditional storytelling has become perhaps it most thrilling concept, Rubin said.
The unpredictability has fostered an online ecosystem of fan conspiracy theories where obsessive fandom thrives unique from any other show on television. Many correctly sleuthed the mystery of Jon Snow's parentage, the central mystery of the show, long before it was fully revealed last season.
The theorizing has not stopped.
There's the popular theory that Tyrion is actually a Targaryen. Then there's a theory that Jon Snow will kill Bran Stark, or maybe it turn's out the whole show was actually a fever dream of Mahershala Ali's character on True Detective to help tie that show's upcoming season with HBO's alpha hit, Rubin joked.
But if there is one thing she wants, it's some QT with a direwolf.
"I really would like to get some meaningful time with Ghost," Rubin said.