Well, Stark nerds, you sullied and Unsullied, you children of Westeros, we're here: the final season of “Game of Thrones.”
Over the years, the show based on George R.R. Martin's attempt to add dragons and magic to the War of the Roses has become one of the great TV phenomenons of recent times.
At the end of the show's seventh season, everyone has their war face on, and everyone is also rocking great-looking black clothing that says, “All men must die — but hopefully I will take some folks out before I, too, croak.”
Before the final run of "Game of Thrones" episodes starts Sunday, let's catch up on where we left our heroes and villains. I have divided this bunch into teams; please do not @ me if I skipped your fave. This thing has a cast of thousands.
Cersei Lannister: Queen Cersei has lost all her children and possibly her brother/lover, too, and has never, ever been more dangerous.
She is pregnant with brother Jaime's child and agreed to team up with Jon Snow, only to tell Jaime that she sent Euron Greyjoy to engage mercenaries called the Golden Company to ultimately help her stab the North in the back.
When we last saw her, she was Michael Corleone at the end of “The Godfather Part II:” immensely powerful and utterly alone.
Jaime Lannister: Jaime, who started in season one as a cartoonish villain, has transformed into (by “Thrones” standards, which are rock-bottom low) a reasonably humble dude of integrity and (again, relative) compassion. In season seven, he nearly drowned, nearly got roasted by a dragon and then (gently) killed the almost unbelievably badass Olenna Tyrell, who chugged some poison and then told Jaime she killed his son, and BTW, tell the missus/sister I did it.
Last seen riding north to help out against the White Walkers and tell the Northern army that Cersei is gonna screw them with their armor on.
Euron Greyjoy: This pirate-as-biker made a big show of delivering poor Ellaria Sand and one of the Sand Snakes to Cersei, then stormed out of the parley at the Dragonpit before heading out to get the Golden Company for Cersei.
Qyburn: The Victor Frankenstein of King's Landing is still the creepiest man in a family home where incest is totally a thing.
Ser Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane: Still Cersei's undead (but not wight-style undead) zombie bodyguard.
Daenerys Targaryen: Oh, D. Always with the questionable choices in men.
She got back to her ancestral home at Dragonstone, made an ally of Jon Snow and built a strong anti-Lannister coalition. But she also lost a dragon, learned the hard way that Tyrion is not a wartime consigliere when Euron bodied her fleet and ended up stranding the Unsullied at an empty Casterly Rock.
Also, she ended up making sweet, sweet love to her nephew (Jon Snow), though neither of them know their true relation to each other.
Last seen ready to fight the Night King and win the Iron Throne.
Tyrion Lannister: Well, he's a loyal servant but a lousy hand to the queen. After handing her two L's in the opening moves of this war and attempting to broker negotiations with his psychotic sister, we last saw Tyrion looking ... jealous? Worried? Feeling all of the feels? One of those, as he witnessed Jon head into Dany's cabin.
Davos Seaworth: This decent chap used to have terrible taste in potential kings (God, Stannis sucked). Now he is a Targaryen supporter and got Gendry (the only Baratheon left alive) out of King's Landing. Currently aiding the Queen Dae.
Melisandre: The lady in red bounced after declaring her mission accomplished (“I have brought together ice and fire”). Lord of Light, this gal is tedious. No wonder Stannis liked her so much.
Varys: The round mound of espionage is currently advising the Mother of Dragons (after she pointed out how fond he was of switching sides). Am I the only one who thinks his name is a in-joke about the Who? ("Boris the Spider" equals Varys the Spider ... nothing, huh?)
Jorah Mormont: Last seen with the Targaryen army, his nasty greyscale disease cured by Samwell Tarly.
Grey Worm and the Unsullied: After finding Casterly Rock empty, he headed back to join the parley and hooked up with the Targaryen army. Missandei. Had relations with Grey Worm; currently on a boat to White Harbor with Jon and Dany.
Sandor "the Hound" Clegane: After talking smack to his zombie brother at the parley, he is sailing with Jon and Dany.
Daario Naharis: The Mother of Dragons left this poor doof in charge of Mereen while she went off to claim her crown. Will we see this lovesick sellsword/My Morning Jacket roadie ever again?
Jon Stark: He's one of the most important players still on the board, but dude needs a decent title. The Younger, Cooler Wolf? The Master Over Which All He Broodeth? Anyway, J-Stark had quite the season. While his brother (Bran) and his best friend (Sam) know that he is the son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark (and thus rightful heir to the Iron Throne, Jon Snow does not, so while we are slightly icked out by his getting into the sack with his aunt Daenerys Targaryen at the end of last season, he and she seem OK with it.
Sansa Stark: After suffering through maybe the most miserable long-term story arc of anyone still alive, the lady of Winterfell was last seen playing the ultimate player (Littlefinger) and reminding everyone that she is no longer the royalty-besotted child she was in season one.
Arya Stark: After killing the heck out of maybe all of the remaining male Freys (which took place after she killed Walder Frey and baked his sons into a pie), the lil’ assassin that could was last seen killing the ever-living crap out of Littlefinger after she and Sansa played him for an all-day sucker. Leave one wolf alive, and the sheep are never safe.
Bran Stark: Last seen being a little extra as the Three-Eyed Raven, figuring out Jon Snow's complicated secret parentage and telling Sam just as Jon and Daenerys were having that most "Game of Thrones" kind of sex — the creepy kind. Useful guy but possibly no longer human.
Samwell Tarly and Gilly: Our favorite bookworm and his partner bounced on the Citadel, where the glorified librarians were treating Sam like an intern. Thanks in part to Gilly, Sam figured out that Jon is not, in fact, the bastard son of Ned Stark but the son of Ned's sister and Dany's brother.
Petyr Baelish: In maybe the best moment of last season's seventh episode, Arya cut the throat of the con artist known as Littlefinger like she was born to it, and an entire fanbase screamed the scream of the just. Goodbye and good riddance, you awful, awful man.
Lyanna Mormont: The most badass child in Westeros not named Arya was last seen as Jon Snow's hype man at a meeting of Northern lords (“I don't plan on knitting by the fire while men fight for me”). By her own admission, she is small and a girl, but she doesn't need your permission to defend the North.
Brienne of Tarth: Last seen rolling out of Winterfell and pleading with Jaime to talk sense into Cersei. Ain't gonna happen, bae.
Yara Greyjoy: The pirate queen got captured by ol’ uncle Euron and is being used as a pawn against her brother, Theon. We think she is still alive.
Theon Greyjoy: Last seen on the road to as much redemption as he can muster. He bailed on his sister, but then fought Captain Haarag for control of ... whatever ships Haarag had, I guess. Probably sailing off to rescue his sister.
Robert Baratheon: Still dead, as he has been since season one, but this lout continues to make problems from beyond the grave, as we learned that his entire rebellion was based on a lie: the idea that Rhaegar kidnapped and raped Lyanna. This was not the case.
Stannis Baratheon: Contrary to many fan theories, Brienne did, in fact, kill him. Still boring.
Gendry: This bastard son of King Robert was last seen being hustled out of King's Landing by Davos Seaworth, our favorite smuggler turned knight turned Snow booster. Favors a hammer like the stud he is.
Also maybe in the mix
Tormund Giantsbane: De facto leader of the Wildlings, now affiliated with Team Stark.
Last seen at the Wall, witnessing the full power of the Night King's ice dragon, which was casually destroying said Wall.
Robin Aryyn: Mothersuckers act like they forgot about Robin ... because they totally did. This annoying child is now sans mom (out the Moon Door, thanks to Littlefinger) and probably being a weirdo at the Aerie.
Tycho Nestoris: The guy that runs the Iron Bank was last seen talking to Cersei about the Lannister debt, but we also know he has the Golden Company, the sellswords whom Euron was last seen sailing to recruit.
The Night King: Dude's got a massive undead army and a flying ice dragon that destroyed the Wall. Last seen marching south as winter comes.
Valar morghulis, folks.
Joe Gross writes for the Austin American-Statesman.