Tonight’s episode of Game of Thrones, “The Watchers on the Wall,” is dedicated entirely to the Battle of Castle Black. Everything going on at and beyond the wall for the past two seasons has come down to this fight. So who lives? Who dies? There’s no telling what the showrunners might decide to change, but here’s the outcome from the books.
Here Be Giants
The Night’s Watch has the deck stacked against them. One major advantage Mance Rayder has in his army is giants. These 10-12 foot tall creatures can do a lot of damage to man and barricade alike, especially when they start ramming things with their mammoth steeds. They should be an impressive sight.
Mance Rayder Will Be Captured
Despite the odds, the Night’s Watch do manage to hold the wall until some help arrives (we’ll get to that in a minute). While Mance’s army is defeated, he is not killed during battle. He will still be made to answer for his crimes, but Mance may have a much larger role still to play in Game of Thrones.
Tormund Giantsbane Will Escape
The one major wildling character who manages to get away unscathed is Tormund Giantsbane. Tormund’s escape is important because he becomes the leader of what’s left of the Wildling army, something that Jon and the Night’s Watch will have to deal with sooner or later.
Ygritte Will Die
In what will surely be a tear-jerking scene for a lot of fans, Ygritte will be a casualty of the Battle of Castle Black. Once the fighting is done, Jon Snow will survey the battlefield and find Ygritte bleeding out from an arrow wound. Jon will cradle his former lover in his arms as she dies. At least that’s how it plays out in the books. It’s possible that the show will try to up the drama a bit by actually having the two come into close contact during the battle instead.
Stannis Baratheon Will Save the Day
While the Night’s Watch will put up enough of a fight to hold the Wall for far longer than they have any right to against such odds, ultimately they will fall. Or they would, if not for the timely arrival of Stannis Baratheon and his army. This moment was hinted at last season when Stannis mentioned that he had seen a vision of a “battle in the snow.” Just when things seem to be about to fall apart for the Night’s Watch, he will come with his newly purchased army and seize the day. Things will get complicated going forward though. The Night’s Watch is an apolitical organization, which makes being indebted to a would-be kind a delicate situation.
Game of Thrones, “The Watchers on the Wall,” airs Sunday, June 8 at 9 PM ET on HBO.