Nearly all Game of Thrones fans agree that Cersei Lannister will be killed before the HBO hit airs its final episode. They don't, however, agree on who will do the killing.
The most popular theory is that she will die at the hand of her brother and lover, Jamie. A prophecy told to Cersei by Maggy the Frog in Season 5 of Game of Thrones is the most cited support for this theory, but there are two other reasons she will probably die at the hand of her brother with a golden hand -- the prophecy of Azor Ahai and a case of history repeating itself.
In the premier episode of Season 5 of Game of Thrones, we learned of some prophecies told to Cersei in her childhood. It was told to her by a character who lived in the woods and is known as Maggy the Frog. She predicted several things, one has come to pass - Cersei's death. Maggy predicted three things. The first was that Cersei would be queen until she is overthrown by someone younger and more beautiful. The second was that she and her king would have no children, but she would have three. All three of them would die.
In the George R.R. Martin books upon which the Game of Thrones television show is based, Maggy the Frog had one more prophecy for Cersei. As described by Winter is Coming, she was told that "when your tears have drowned you, the valonqar shall wrap his hands about your pale white throat and choke the life from you."
There has been much debate about the identity of her valonqar, which is the Valyrian word for "little brother." Game of Thrones fans have suggested Jamie (born moments after her), Tyrion (her little brother in stature), and even The Hound. The prophecy says "the valonqar," not "your valonqar," and The Hound is the younger brother of The Mountain.
Another Game of Thrones prophecy that is the topic of much conversation is the prophecy of Azor Ahai, someone who basically is supposed to save the world in its darkest hour. (If you'd like details, you can learn more at the Game of Thrones Wikia.) Recently, many have suggested that Jamie Lannister may be Azor Ahai, and supporting evidence is pretty strong. The Inquisitr walked through that evidence not long ago, and, if it plays out, then the one remaining part of the prophecy that remains to be fulfilled is Azor Ahai killing his Nissa Nissa. In Jamie's case, this would be Cersei.
A third reason that Jamie will likely be the one to kill Cersei doesn't have anything to do with prophecy. Instead, it has to do with history repeating itself, history that happened prior to Episode 1 of Game of Thrones. Jamie earned the nickname of Kingslayer years earlier as the result of him murdering King Aerys, also known as The Mad King. When you consider Aerys' story and compare it to Cersei's story, you find some important similarities.
One of the things for which Aerys is mostly known, one of the things often pointed to as a sign of his madness, is his repetition of the the phrase, "Burn them all," which was interpreted as being an order to burn the city to avoid being defeated by the rebels. In Season 6 of Game of Thrones, Jamie explains to Brienne that he killed King Aerys to protect the people of the city.
Now, consider Cersei in Season 6. Instead of showing up for her trial, in one of the most powerful scenes of Game of Thrones yet, she "burns them all." She orders the burning of hundreds of people including the High Sparrow, Queen Margaery, Mace and Loras Tyrell, and Lancel and Kevan Lannister. It also is not much of a stretch to say that Cersei has shown some signs of madness over time, especially since the death of her last child. Just as Jamie, killed Aerys in order to protect the people of Kings' Landing (thus becoming the Kingslayer), he could kill Cersei in an effort to protect what is left of their kingdom if he sees her going down a dangerous (or mad) path. This would make him the Queenslayer.
Time will tell how it all plays out. Will Cersei die in Season 7, setting up Season 8 to focus on the war with the White Walkers? Maybe.
Game of Thrones returns to HBO for its penultimate season on Sunday, July 16 at 9 p.m. ET.
[Featured Image by HBO]