Warning! The following contains spoilers for Game of Thrones' Season 8 Episode 2. read at your own risk.
The stage is set for The Battle Of Winterfell, and as Jon Snow mentioned, the key to defeating the Night King's army seems to be killing the leader himself. Unless Game of Thrones is ending on a real downer with the Night King ruling Westeros, he'll probably meet his end by the hand of one of the HBO series' beloved characters. Here's who I'm liking to do the deed, as well as how and where they might do it.
If the Night King has any real rival on Game of Thrones, it's Jon Snow. The two have crossed paths a couple times in the series, and with the White Walkers and wights poised to attack Winterfell, it appears we've reached the climax of their beef. Whether it's on the battlefield, or within the walls of Winterfell, it seems like a safe bet these two will meet before the battle ends.
As for how it will happen, a sword battle would be pretty awesome. Jon's got a Valyrian steel blade that should slice through the Night King, especially if he does something ultra epic like hitting him with a cleaving blow after jumping off Rhaegal. Jon killing the Night King would be a bit cliche considering that's probably what a vast majority of fans assume will happen, but that doesn't mean it won't be any less satisfying should it happen.
It sounds crazy given Theon's cowardly antics and overall bad luck, but the young Greyjoy has given himself a solid chance of coming face to face with the Night King in the coming episode. Theon has pledged to protect Bran, who will be the target the Night King wishes to destroy. Theon will wait with some fellow Ironborn and Bran in the Godswood, and serve as the last line of defense should the Night King break through.
Theon's pretty good with a bow, so chances are he'd loose a dragonglass-tipped arrow into the Night King's eye. If he pulled it off, it would be the ultimate redemptive arc for any Game of Thrones character, and fans would probably forgive Theon for all the past things he's done. Of course, he might also turn tail and run if he sees the Night King, which feels more on brand even with his more brave actions as of late.
Could the Kingslayer be the one who ends up killing the Night King? Killing a king to save the realm would bring Game of Thrones full-circle, except this time he'd be doing it as an honorable man. Plus, he'd ironically be saving Bran in the process, which again, brings the whole adventure full circle. Are we entirely sure this whole show isn't really centered on Jaime?
That's unlikely, although a scenario in which Jaime kills the Night King is less so. He may not be the swordsman he once was, but let's not sit here and pretend he needs to be an elite sword fighter to best the undead aggressor in battle. Jaime's at least as good with a sword as Jon, and maybe even better despite his one hand. If Jon can do it, Jaime can almost certainly get it done.
Bran Stark/Three-Eyed Raven
Ever since his transformation, Bran has done more observing and talking than he has aided the actual war effort. This may be because he's trying to ensure his survival as Game of Thrones revealed he's the main target the Night King is pursuing in this campaign. Bran offered himself up as bait to draw the Night King out so that the living have a chance to defeat him, but does he stand a chance at defeating him?
Bran's done some pretty impressive things with his powers, and while he may not be the most capable fighter in Westeros he's got a few tricks up his sleeve. If things get real in the godswood he can warg into creatures and humans in an attempt to keep the Night King at bay, and possibly successfully defend himself. Of course, that's assuming he's really in danger, or has everyone given up on the whole him being the Night King theories?
Arya has had zero experience with wights, White Walkers, or the Night King, but that doesn't mean she can't step up and be the one to defeat the Night King. She's certainly one of the more capable fighters of Game of Thrones, and that weapon she got from Gendry will only make her a more dominant force. Will she be the undead's nightmare in this upcoming battle?
Imagine Arya coming face to face with the Night King, and striking him down with a few well placed slashes. Or could she go the stealth route and take the face of a wight to take out the Night King that way? He probably wouldn't fall for a trick like that, but imagine how freaked out audiences would be if he suddenly grabbed the face of a wight and it slowly turned into Arya!
Daenerys' dragons will probably play some key role in the upcoming battle, and will likely go toe-to-toe with their resurrected brother Viserion who is now an ice dragon. Once that's all over, could one of them be the reason the Night King is no more? If the Night King is riding Viserion again like when he was attacking The Wall, there may even be a chance these two can kill two birds with one stone.
Well, we can assume that anyway. As Bran mentioned, no one has ever tried to use dragon fire on the Night King, so I'm not entirely sure on whether or not it will harm him. If he is immune, imagine the surprise of everyone if the dragons roast him within the castle walls only for him to emerge from the ashes unscathed. That would be a kick in the teeth, especially if innocent lives were lost in the attack.
Will any of these characters be the one to deal the final blow? Game of Thrones has the answers, and fans can find out by watching Season 8 on HBO Sundays at 9:00 p.m. ET.