HBO’s fiery fantasy saga Game of Thrones may have just found a new contender for the Iron Throne as data reveals the show’s most important character. So, in the race to the world’s most uncomfortable chair, who comes out on top?
It may come as no surprise to some, but everyone’s favorite little lion has come from the back of the pack to lead David Benioff and D.B. Weiss’ show. For six seasons (and counting) Peter Dinklage has kept us all entertained as the alcoholic dwarf Tyrion Lannister. From visiting the Night’s Watch to his heroic escapades at the Battle of Blackwater, killing his father when “caught short” and playing Hand of the King to not only Joffrey Baratheon but Daenerys Targaryen, Tyrion has been on quite a journey during the A Song of Ice and Fire saga.
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Data compiled by analytics firm Looker reveals some interesting facts. Not only has Tyrion appeared in the most number of episodes, but he has also had the most screentime from season 1-6. Ranking the 32 “main” characters by appearances and exposure, there are no surprises that Tyrion, Cersei, Daenerys, and Jon Snow are classed as the big hitters of the series. Like in George R.R. Martin’s books, no one is the lead character, but Tyrion puts across a pretty convincing case for carrying the show on his shoulders.
Appearing in 54 of the past 60 episodes, Tyrion is some two episodes ahead of his wicked sister Cersei, and five episodes clear of the joint third place held by Jon and Daenerys. The Stark sisters, Arya and Sansa, are tied on 47 episodes, and the final Lannister brother, Jamie, has made it to 43. Elsewhere, there is the interesting inclusion of Jorah Mormont (42 episodes) and Theon Greyjoy (39 episodes). When we look at screen time, Tyrion is still in the No. 1 spot and has clocked up an impressive 293 minutes of airtime. Jon moves to second place with 268 minutes and Daenerys again takes the bronze medal with 221 minutes. This time, and despite Sean Bean’s early departure from the show, there is a surprising amount of action for Ned Stark with 99 minutes before he lost his head.
The recent trailers for season 7 emphasize that Tyrion doesn’t seem to be slowing down as the show winds down in its final 13 episodes. With the perfect balance of political power and likeability, it is no wonder that Martin himself is such a fan of “the Imp.” Speaking about his novel, Martin revealed that Tyrion has always been in the sought after survivors club of people he promised would make it to the end. Although the TV series frequently diverts from Martin’s novels, expect Tyrion, Daenerys, Jon, Bran, and Arya to bow out with Game of Thrones‘ eighth season.
Given that the big players of the show all get their own chapters in the books, the findings are nothing too out of the ordinary; however, as the show heats up and cools down in equal measures, most would expect either Jon or Dany to be classed as the show’s “Jack from Lost.” Either way, with season 7 teasing the alliance of all alliances in Jon and Daenerys joining forces against Queen Cersei and vicious pirate Euron Greyjoy, the last remaining survivors and Tyrion are sure to have plenty to do when the show returns.
Game of Thrones returns for season 7 on July 16th.
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