So someone sent this to me yesterday and I couldn’t wait to blog it because it remained me of a simpler time on the internet when these $15 challenges were all the rage, everyone collectively loved the fuck out of Game of Thrones, and Twitter wasn’t a political dumpster fire every single day. I figured it was the perfect Friday afternoon blog since it’s a time waster about an easy subject matter and it’s a #FlashbackFriday (another term from better internet days).
Now before people freak out, I know there were some snubs on this list like the Queen In The North Sansa Stark, Silver-Tongued Ser Davos, Jaime Lannister, and that big ol’ bitch The Night King. But for this blog, I’m gonna pick what’s available to me by breaking this down each section and making my picks at the end.
First up is obviously leader since every squad needs a face of the franchise. Obviously the kissing
cousins aunt/nephew are at the top of the list because they were the song of ice and fire we heard so much about. I love Dany and Jon with all my heart. But their prices are way too much to pay for leaders that had bumpy roads, like Dany having issues with uprisings with the Sons of the Harpy and slave owners in Essos to Jon getting murdered by his own people and being the worst military mind on whatever planet Westeros is on. Dany coming with her three changes would change things a bunch, but since they aren’t listed, I’m not lumping them in. Plus the world will never forget that Daenerys Targaryen blew a 3-0 dragon lead.
Cersei is the baddest bitch in the world. But as we saw in Season 8, she was the product of a system, with that system being the Lannister name and bank account. If you want a cruel bitch that can anger her enemies, Cersei is your girl. But if you want someone that rallies the troops and is smart enough to leave a city as it literally burns around her, Cersei ain’t the pick.
My thoughts on the High Sparrow is fuck the High Sparrow. All history has told us and even the everyday cult leader shows how easy it is to radicalize religious fanatics. Which is why my pick is Stannis Baratheon. He is strategic, principled, and can swing a blade. You want a leader of men? Well Stannis’ men stayed loyal to him despite catching a massive L in the Battle of the Blackwater, denouncing their old Gods while following a religious fanatic, and freezing their dicks off while waiting out the Boltons as they cozily sat in Winterfell. In fact Stannis’ biggest weakness was his drive, since the whole “burn your cute daughter alive” thing backfired on him since his loyal men and wife finally deserted him at that point. But other than that little asterisk, Stannis is easily my guy.
My Pick: Stannis “The Mannis” Baratheon ($2)
Truth be told, I think the Leaders section of the blog is kinda overrated. Yes you need a head honcho or honchess to lead the charge. But as anybody who watched Thrones knows, magic is the great equalizer and maybe the most important thing when push comes to shove.
First off, I’ll just be frank and say my pick is Bran Stark for multiple reasons, the most obvious of which being that I bought all his stock at its lowest point and drove the #Branwagon for almost two full years before he WON THE GAME OF THRONES. He may not have the crazy physical magic that others do. But he is essentially a fully operational human computer in a place where a wheelchair was considered a groundbreaking invention. Everything he did led to the White Walkers getting erased from the world and Bran winning the throne.
So the easy pick is Bran. Melisandre had a hell of a redemption episode during the Battle of Winterfell and could pull tricks like popping smoke monsters out of her pussy. But she also made some incredible mistakes along the way that ended with the end of the Baratheon family as we knew it. No amount of burnt leeches excuse that.
I’ve always been a Jaqen H’ghar fan and having the Faceless Men on my side would be nice. But he also got his ass locked up and would have been ash if Arya didn’t save him from that locked up wagon once upon a time. Qyburn is a sick fuck that dabbled in some serious black arts. Sam is trash in this category and all other categories. No amount of books or lucky stabs with dragon glass could change that.
However Bran can see the past, the present, maybe the future, warg into a bunch of other shit, and is pretty much the most powerful being in the world.
My Pick: Bran Stark ($5)
There will be no slandering Tywin Lannister in this blog. I love that ruthless son of a bitch more than he loved his youngest son. Okay, that doesn’t mean too much when you think about it. But that dude wiped out his biggest threat using nothing but a feather quill, some ink, and a few ravens sent to that old fuck Walder Frey.
Robb Stark’s military strategy may be second-to-none. He consistently outwitted the Lannister army and had to have pretty decent odds in Vegas to take the Iron Throne. But his political savvy was maybe the worst I have seen on this show save for maybe his dad and “half brother”. Robb Stark was my dude but he was the reason his House’s blood is what makes the Red Wedding red.
Tyrion ended the series on one of the worst losing streaks ever seen in Westeros before the Council Of Rich People let him decide the next king because he had a bunch of stories for reasons that still remain unknown. No doubts he had his moments as Hand of the King. But he was trash as Hand of the Queen.
Olenna Tyrell is actually a huge bargain at $1 because her brain was as sharp as her silver tongue. But I gotta go with Littlefinger because almost every moment in the entire show happens because of his scheming behind the scenes and the only reason he didn’t last longer or win the throne is because my Magic guy foiled his plan using magic Littlefinger didn’t even know existed. Idiots like me were on pins and needles once the theory of Littlefinger faking his death made its rounds on the internet, which shows just how much I respect him.
The other 4 picks are all great strategists in their own rights in one way or the other. But Littlefinger is the only self-made person on the list (Davos and Varys may have been my silver and bronze medalists if they were included because I loved those dudes. Davos gets the silver because I would have loved him always going to his chopped off finger routine once shit hit the fan)
My Pick: Littlefinger ($4)
I won’t lie, I like all these fighters for a bunch of different reasons, which is why I don’t mind saving a bit of cash by going toward the chepaer end. Oberyn is maybe the coolest character on the entire show and the only reason he died is because he let emotions get the best of him and ran his mouth too much. Daario is as good a fighter as he is a lover, which based on him sharing a bed with Khaleesi, means he is pretty fucking good. Arya killed what was essentially Death. And Bronn fought his way from a nobody to the head of High Garden.
But my pick is Brienne of Tarth because she could be at best, the greatest fighter of the bunch and at worse a very fine bargain.
My Pick: Brienne of Tarth ($2)
Similar to fighters, I think there are Pros and Cons to each of the muscle. Or at least most of the muscle. Wun Wun at $5 is an absolute bargain because he is a essentially a mythical creature that can rip all these other dudes apart because he’s a giant. His one downside is that he’s old and his best days may be behind him. But he’s still badass. He’s pretty much Large. But since I don’t have the money, I can’t acquire the giant.
The Mountain is a flashy pick whether you get Human Mountain or Zombie Mountain. But he strikes me as someone that would be a Dwight Howard in the locker room, whicih isn’t a good thing. Khal Drogo was one of my favs in the show, but it’s hard to pick a guy who died from a scratch as your muscle guy.
Which leaves me with The Hound and Tormund. I know Tormund was a crowd favorite. And while I didn’t actively dislike him, I definitely didn’t like him as much as other people did. However, The Hound was in my Top 20 during my first watch of Thrones, went into my Top 10 after my #67In67 rewatch, and may have been Top 5 by the end of Season 8. The Hound isn’t your franchise guy or even secondary guy. But he’s a guy that does the dirty work, talks that shit, and helps win championships. The Hound is pretty much Draymond Green. Plus he took down his undead brother that is $2 more than him in one of the most epic scenes in the entire show, which is pretty much worthy of the $2 by itself.
My Pick: The Hound ($2)
As always, I’d love to hear what the Stoolies would pick. So here is a form to submit your picks. You have to pick one of each and cannot go over $15. And since I don’t know how to limit the amount you spend, we are using the Honor System.