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Characters: Game Of Thrones Wildlings
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Wildlings a.k.a. The Free Folk
Jon Snow: "I know your people are brave, no one denies that. Six times in the last thousand years, a King-beyond-the-Wall has attacked the kingdoms. Six times they failed. You don't have the discipline. You don't have the training. Your army is no army. You don't know how to fight together."
Tribes that live beyond The Wall. They often raid the North for resources and are bitter enemies of the Night's Watch.
- The Alliance: Under Mance Rayder, who has managed to unite dozens of tribes and chieftains under his leadership.
- Arch-Enemy: The Night's Watch and the Wildlings have been locking horns for generations.
- Asskicking Equals Authority
- Barbarian Tribe: Or tribes, actually.
- Born Unlucky: Their chronic misfortunes originate from their ancestors living in the wrong side of the Wall when it was constructed eight thousand years ago.
- Butt Monkey/The Chew Toy: Everybody hates the Cave People.
- Did Not Think This Through: As Jon points out, despite being a Badass Army united under Mance Rayder, it's clear that the individual Wildlings are only out for themselves and lack any form of organisation or discipline to be truly effective as a fighting force. While even the children in the North grow up hearing the names, dates and locations of previous failed Wildling invasions, Wildlings like Ygritte don't appear to be aware of any of them, so they'll keep making the same mistakes! Some Wildings also display signs of being more bloodthirsty than pragmatic, which is a serious problem when you're trying to pull off a stealth attack.
- Due to the Dead: They do not say prayers for their fallen dead, but they do make sure to burn them.
- Elective Monarchy: Ygritte emphasizes that, even if Mance is king, the Wildlings chose him, and he has no right to be king except at the Wildlings' sufferance.
- Everyone Has Standards: Tormund's band of Wildlings are fully prepared to Rape, Pillage, and Burn their enemies, but even they are disturbed and disgusted by the Thenns fondness for cannibalism.
- Fantasy Counterpart Culture: In principle of the Picts and other ancient Caledonian peoples. However, the Wall is so far north that they actually come more as a cross between Sami, Inuit, and the Paleolithic tribes of Ice Age Europe. They have Scandinavian names, though.
- Five-Bad Band: Of the major characters serving under Mance:
- Gender Is No Object: Wildling men and women alike take part in raiding parties.
- Godzilla Threshold: The return of the White Walkers and an expected very long Winter fast approaching, convinces the various Wildling factions to band together under Mance Rayder and flee South as an unified force.
- Grim Up North: The lands north of the Wall aren't called the Lands of Always Winter for nothing.
- The Horde/Always Chaotic Evil: Considered such by the people of the Seven Kingdoms.
- Insistent Terminology: They consider themselves real Northerners and regard people down south of the Wall, including the land other Westerosi consider "The North" to be southerners; much to the annoyance of Jon Snow and even little Rickon, who spouts that "We are not Southerners" when Osha, an ex-Wildling, brings it up.
- Leeroy Jenkins: As Jon points out, their tendency to charge in without thinking is why they've never managed to successfully invade the North.
- Nicknaming the Enemy: They refer to The Night's Watch as "Crows", and Southerners in general as "Kneelers".
- Not So Different: Like many Northeners, they are descendants of the First Men and share (or used to) some traits with the inhabitants of that septentrional and stark side of the world.
- Only One Name: Wildlings don't have surnames, though some have adopted sobriquets that serve as one.
- Pride: They see themselves as "free" and have contempt for the customs south of the Wall.
- Proud Warrior Race: Not terribly disciplined, though, which is why their invasions have all failed (along with the giant wall of ice).
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork / Enemy Mine: Mance Rayder managed to unite the various Wildling clans by pointing out that despite their complete hatred for each other, they should fear the White Walkers more.
- We Are Struggling Together: Used to be the case before Mance Rayder unified all the tribes.
Mance Rayder: Do you know what it takes to unite ninety clans, half of whom want to massacre the other half for one insult or another? They speak seven different languages in my army. The Thenns hate the Hornfoots, the Hornfoots hate the Ice-river clans, everyone hates the Cave people. So, you know how I got moon-worshippers and cannibals and giants to march together in the same army?
Jon Snow: No.
Mance Rayder: I told them we were all going to die if we don't get south. Because that's the truth.
- Wild Hair: As rather traditional barbarians, none of them are particularly well-groomed.
- Your Terrorists Are Our Freedom Fighters: Most Westerosi and the Night's Watch regard the Wildlings as raiding marauders who pillage and plunder the lands beyond the wall and are not content to remain on the other side, practicing a less civilized way of life. The Wildlings, however, feel that they are oppressed and unjustly forced to live on the other side of a Wall and that their violent raids are their only option to flee the White Walkers, since the Watch will never simply let them through.
Mance Rayder's Army
Mance Rayder, the King-Beyond-the-Wall
"I'm going to light the biggest fire the North has ever seen!"
"Stand up, boy. We don't kneel for anyone beyond the Wall."
A former Night's Watchman that deserted and went to live among the Wildlings. He is rumored to have unified them in a single army and adopted the title "King Beyond the Wall" for himself.
- Adaptational Attractiveness: Inverted for once; Mance in the books is something of The Casanova. His television self is by no means ugly, but does not look the part nor act it.
- Anti-Villain: He's taking the Wildlings south to save them from the threat of the White Walkers. From the books...
- Asskicking Equals Authority: How the Wildlings chose him as their King.
- Badass: Started off as an enemy to the Wildlings and managed to unite over 100,000 of them as their King, no easy feat by a longshot.
- Big Bad: To the Night's Watch.
- Brutal Honesty: How he became King-Beyond-the-Wall:
Mance: I told them we were all going to die, if we didn't get south. Because that's the truth.
- The Bus Came Back: He makes a return in Season 4 ...By the final episode.
- The Dreaded: Again, to the Night's Watch.
- Elected Monarch: Chosen by the Wildlings to lead them.
- Cincinnatus: Specifically, to lead them out of the White Walkers' reach.
- Everyone Has Standards: Mance is noticeably shocked when Jon informs him the Lord Commander was well aware of Craster giving his sons to the White Walkers. He even accepts this as reason enough for Jon to want to switch sides.
- Face-Heel Turn: Went from being one of the best Rangers to leading the Wildling hordes.
- Friendly Enemy: He's quite cordial with Jon and is willing to sit down and negotiate with him. They even toast to their fallen comrades together.
- The Ghost: Mentioned all the way back to Season 1, not appearing until 3.
- Going Native: An interesting example where the Native goes Native. According to his actor and the producers, Mance was a Wildling baby that was found and raised by the Night's Watch. However this caused an identity crisis for him over his loyalty to his people the Wildlings or his adopted people the Night's Watch. Eventually, he deserted to join the former.
- King Incognito: The first time he meets Jon Snow. From the books...
- Know When to Fold 'Em: When Stannis attacks the Wildlings in a pincer move, Mance quickly realizes there's no hope of co-ordinating his army in time to mount even a half-capable defence. Their lines were already broken by an enemy they didn't expect, and to prevent unnecessary bloodshed, Mance quickly surrenders.
- Modest Royalty: The Wildlings don't believe in "blue blood" and have contempt for the protocol used south of the Wall.
- The Nondescript: Compared with Tormund Giantsbane or the Lord of Bones, he looks like a regular man.
- The Oath-Breaker: Possibly the most well-known, having broken his vows to the Night's Watch to go and lead the enemy against them.
- The Paragon Always Rebels: Was considered one of the best Rangers in the Night's Watch.
- Perma Stubble: While most of the other Wildlings have beards or thicker facial hair, Mance keeps it stubbled.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: His goal isn't to conquer the South; it's to get his people safe from the White Walkers.
- Steven Ulysses Perhero: His surname is pronounced just like "raider", fitting for the leader of a Barbarian Tribe.
- We Used to Be Friends: With Qhorin Halfhand.
Mance: He was my brother once. Back when he had a whole hand.
- Worthy Opponent: Considers Jeor Mormont this.
Jon: You think any of them got away?
Mance: It's not impossible. You don't go far betting against Mormont.
"If we die we'll die, but first we'll live."
A Wildling Jon Snow takes captive at The Frostfangs.
- Action Girl: For the Wildlings. She's their most capable archer.
- Adaptational Attractiveness: While not unattractive, Book!Ygritte is described as having crooked teeth and a pug nose.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: Averted. She rejects Orell for Jon (implied not to be the first time she's done so).
- Armor-Piercing Question: When Jon angrily declares that he and his family are of the same blood as the Wildlings and have as much claim to the North as they do, she responds with a simple "Then why are you fightin' us?" Jon is quite surprised by this.
- Badass: When she fires an arrow, someone dies.
- Because You Were Nice to Me: She starts to become attracted to Jon because he spares her life.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: With Jon Snow.
- Brief Accent Imitation: Loves to mock Jon by repeating his sentences in a guttural tone modelled after Snow's one.
- Brutal Honesty: When the Halfhand asks her what the Wildlings would do if they captured him, Ygritte informs him he could count himself very fortunate if his death was quick.
- Catch Phrase: "You know nothing, Jon Snow." Becomes a Subverted Catch Phrase when Jon shows her how to do it down south.
- Character Death: She's shot and killed by Olly during the assault on the Wall.
- Country Mouse: Having never seen a windmill before, she is completely amazed by it and assumes it is a castle. Jon corrects her that castles are about three times as large.
- Cold Sniper: Already a deadly archer, "Breaker of Chains" demonstrates that Ygritte has no problem with shooting unarmed peasants, remaining unerringly cold and focused throughout the slaughter.
- Culture Clash: With Jon. Despite the two of them having basically the same cultural origin as descendants of the First Men. She regularly mocks — or punctures through — southern customs and conventions.
- Dating Catwoman: She's Jon Snow's Catwoman.
- Deadpan Snarker: Extremely so. Every other line out of her mouth is a snappy retort.
Ygritte: "How old are you, boy?"
Jon: "I'm a man. Of the Night's Watch."
Ygritte: "You're a boy who's never been with a girl before?"
- Died in Your Arms Tonight: Held by Jon as she dies from being shot with an arrow.
- Due to the Dead: Is given a personal funeral by Jon Snow alone in the forest beyond the Wall, with her body then ceremonially burned.
- Everyone Has Standards: After Jon's betrayal she's shown happily butchering villages in the Wildlings' attempts to draw the Night's Watch into the field, but when she finds Gilly and baby Sam hiding in a Molestown brothel, not even knowing that Gilly is a wildling herself, she just tells her to be quiet and leaves.
- Face Death with Dignity: When she believes Jon is about to execute her, she asks only that he does it clean and burns her body afterwards.
- Fallen Hero: Though she was never exactly a "hero", she was shown to be a decent woman with Jon. After his betrayal going into Season 4, she's become much more humorless and cold, even while killing. She still has some moral standards.
- Fiery Redhead: She has bright red hair and is tough as Tormund.
- Go Out with a Smile: Upon being fatally shot in the chest with an arrow, Ygritte leaves Jon with a faint, mocking smile and one last utterance of her Catch Phrase before succumbing to her wounds in his arms. It's still visible on her face even when Jon lights her funeral pyre.
- Heroes Want Redheads: Jon Snow certainly does.
- Improbable Aiming Skills: Tormund notes that she has them, indicating that her failure to kill Jon with three arrows was deliberate.
- Karmic Death: Killed with a bow and arrow by Olly, the village boy whose parents she killed with a bow and arrow.
- The Lad-ette: Most of the time she comes off manlier than Jon.
- Love Interest: Jon Snow's.
- Men Are the Expendable Gender: Unlike the men she fought beside, she was spared purely because Jon Snow couldn't bring himself to kill a woman — despite her trying to kill him.
- The Modest Orgasm: Amusingly, whilst in the middle of an Ironic Echo of her catchphrase:
Ygritte: You know nothing, Jon Sno-Ooh-Oohh!
- Proud Warrior Race Gal: She thinks of herself and the Wildlings as a proud race of free badasses.
- Or Are You Just Happy to See Me?: "Did you pull a knife on me during the night?"
- Secret Keeper: She knows that Jon joined the Wildlings to spy on them for the Watch, but hopes to sway him to her side.
- Sword over Head: Jon can't bring himself to kill her when ordered to. And despite vowing to kill him the entire season, and coldly massacring just about anyone else who gets in her path, Ygritte hesitates at killing Jon when she finally has him dead to rights — only to get an arrow In the Back from a third party.
- The Tease: She has fun with Jon by teasing him relentlessly.
- Uptight Loves Wild: Jon is definitely uptight when he meets her, Ygritte loosens him up.
- Villainous Friendship: Ygritte and Tormund are shown to be fairly close to one another throughout the series. Ygritte is quick to defend him from Styr, and Tormund is quick to help guide her relationship with Jon. This is demonstrated to its fullest in the Season 4 finale: in spite of everything, what remains Tormund's one concern right up until the end, even as he's languishing in one of the Watch's prison cells? That Ygritte receives a proper funeral in the homeland she loved.
- Woman Scorned: After Jon chooses his duty over her, she puts three arrows into his back. Though it's later noted that with her archery skills, she easily could have killed him, indicating she still feels something for him. Tormund lampshades it later, when he tells Jon he knew Ygritte loved him from the fervor with which she wanted to kill him.
- Would Not Hurt A Child: She spares Gilly and young Sam's lives because the latter is only a baby.
- You Wouldn't Shoot Me: You know nothing, Jon Snow.
"I like you boy, but if you lie to me, I'll pull your guts out through your throat."
"Plenty of little men have tried to put their swords in my heart, and there are plenty of little skeletons buried in the woods."
Another war-leader of the Free Folk and Mance Rayder's second in command
- Actually That's My Assistant: Jon initially assumes Tormund to be Mance Rayder and bows, calling him "Your Grace." Tormund finds this endlessly amusing.
Tormund: Did you hear that? Now all you better kneel every time I fart!
- Adaptational Villainy: To a degree; he's less jovial and more brutal than his book counterpart.
- Annoying Arrows: Takes several during the Battle of the Wall, but keeps fighting.
- Badass: In addition to being an intimidating presence, Tormund is an absolute monster on the field, singly racking up more onscreen kills during the Battle of Castle Black than most of the other Wildlings combined.
- Badass Beard: To match his badass credentials, Tormund sports perhaps the most impressive beard on the show.
- Beard of Barbarism: It comes with being a Wildling.
- Bestiality Is Depraved: Toyed with. He boasts of having bedded a she-bear, but Ygritte says everyone knows it never happened. In the books one of his self-fashioned "titles" is Husband to Bears.
- Beware the Nice Ones: He's fairly affable and takes an immediate shine to Jon Snow, but doesn't hesitate to warn him that if he crosses him or betrays the Wildlings' trust, he will not hesitate to pull Jon's guts out through his throat.
- Boisterous Bruiser: He's an absolute demon in combat, and he knows it.
- Co-Dragons: With Styr, to Mance.
- Combat Pragmatist: He leads his army to kill a harmless old man, in the hopes that it will draw the Night's Watch out of their castles to investigate and they'll be easier to defeat.
- Composite Character: The man Jon believes to be Mance in the books is Styr, the Magnar of Thenn, whose first appearance has been pushed back to Season 4. Styr also leads the climbing of the Wall. In the books, Tormund escapes after the assault on Castle Black, having been on the side of the Haunted Forest, but in the series, since he's part of the raid storming, he's captured for questioning instead of Rattleshirt.
- Defeat Means Friendship/Demoted to Dragon: Tormund is one of the Free Folk chieftains Mance had to defeat to become King-Beyond-the-Wall.
- Defiant to the End: Grossly outnumbered, surrounded by crossbowmen, with several arrows sticking out of his body, yet he still refuses to surrender. Then he gets shot in the knee, yet he still tries to slash at Jon. Then he gets taken prisoner and dragged away, yet he still threatens his captors.
- Everyone Has Standards: Tormund may be a somewhat ruthless wildling raider, but even he is repulsed by the Thenns.
Tormund: Thenns. I fucking hate Thenns.
- Fiery Redhead: He's a Large Ham eager to fight, with bright red hair.
- Foe-Tossing Charge: Pick a scene with him in the Battle of Castle Black, any scene: He'll be cleaving through the Night's Watch's men. Not even Thorne, the most experienced fighter in the wall, can stop him.
- Foil: To Ser Alliser Thorne. Throne also serves as the second in command in his army and is the best fighter among his men but is a Jerkass and is widely disliked by his men while also making very questionable (to say the least) leadership decisions. But while heavily flawed when it comes down to it he's still trying to protect the South and its inhabitants from the Wildlings. Tormund on the other hand is a very effective leader, is generally friendly and well-liked, but has zero issue slaughtering innocents and peasants. The fact they act as foils to one another becomes most obvious when they personally fight each other.
- Good Can Not Comprehend Evil: After being captured he immediently assumes the Nightwatch is going to torture him to death, as that's what Wildlings often do to their prisoners. He seems surprised when Jon Snow tells him he won't be tortured. In fairness he likely also heard false stories about the Nightwatch that exaggerated their brutality.
- Guttural Growler: Tormund has a deep, growling, rumbling voice.
- Implacable Man: Absolutely nothing can stop him during the attack on Castle Black, and it's only when the Wildlings are fully repulsed that he's captured. And even then, Jon needs to put another arrow in him before he'll stop trying to fight his way out.
- Large Ham: Tormund is prone to chewing scenary and making grandiose declarations.
- Lightning Bruiser: Demonstrated at the Battle of Castle Black. For a man who hits like his namesake, he's incredibly quick.
- Machete Mayhem: His blade looks like a big-ass machete.
- Mythology Gag: Prior to the attack on Castle Black in season 4, Tormund starts trying to tell a tall tale his book counterpart is very fond ofFrom the books... . He is almost immediately shot down by Ygritte.
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Giantsbane.
- Nice Guy: Unless you're his enemy, Tormund is incredibly affable, easygoing, and jovial. Even against his enemies, he can be affable, to a certain point.
- Pet the Dog: When Jon begins fighting the Wildlings, Tormund's first act is to restrain Ygritte, preventing her from participating in the fight and getting herself killed. Notable in that he chose to do this over engaging Jon in combat, despite looking absolutely pissed at his betrayal. On top of that, he goes out of his way to give the old horse breeder the dignified death he wants, spares Ygritte's life after her betrayal, and possibly even lets her go after Jon when he flees.
- Later, after the Battle of Castle Black, an uncharacteristically somber Tormund reminds Jon that Ygritte honestly, truly loved him when she was alive, before instructing Snow to burn her body in the homeland she loved so much.
Tormund: She belongs in the North. The real North. Understand me?
- Shipper on Deck: Always smiles when he sees Jon and Ygritte together, and gives Jon relationship and sex advice.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Is really not happy working alongside the Obviously Evil Thenns.
- Unstoppable Rage: By the end of the Battle of Castle Black, Tormund's fury for his fallen comrades has reached an utterly terrifying fever pitch.
(To Jon, as he's being dragged off on his orders) "I SHOULD HAVE THROWN YOU FROM THE TOP OF THE WALL, BOY!"
- Villainous Friendship: Tormund and Ygritte are shown to be fairly close to one another throughout the series. Ygritte is quick to defend him from Styr, and Tormund is quick to help guide her relationship with Jon. This is demonstrated to its fullest in the Season 4 finale: in spite of everything, what remains Tormund's one concern right up until the end, even as he's languishing in one of the Watch's prison cells? That Ygritte receives a proper funeral in the homeland she loved.
- What the Hell Is That Accent?: Tormund's accent sounds indeterminately between Scottish and Kristofer Hivju's native Norwegian.
"People work together when it suits 'em. They're loyal when it suits 'em. Love each other when it suits 'em. And they kill each other when it suits 'em."
Played By: Mackenzie Crook
A Wildling skinchanger (a person who can enter the minds of animals) in service to Mance Rayder.
- All Love Is Unrequited: Declares his feelings for Ygritte, who rejects him.
- Animal Eye Spy: He uses his eagle for this purpose, making him Mance's most valuable scout.
- Ascended Extra: Getting any screentime at all is a larger role than what he has in the books, where he's already dead before Jon infiltrates the wildlings. However, we later learn Jon killed his human body whilst he was mentally inside his eagle, he remained within the eagle and very angry at Jon — a fate that ultimately happens at the third season's end.
- Badass: As much as any Wildling. He climbs the Wall (which Jon has trouble with) and manages to fight Jon (a professionally trained expert swordsman) very well. Sure, he's killed during the fight, but he held his own pretty well and even managing to try a Taking You with Me farewell.
- Beard of Evil: He has the usual unshaven look of a Wildling.
- Bilingual Bonus/Meaningful Name: "Orel" means "Eagle" in several Slavic languages. As of "The Rains of Castamere", he is now permanently stuck inside his eagle partner, thanks to Jon.
- Blonde Guys Are Evil: Orell never removes his face coverings, but there's usually some dirty blonde hair sneaking out.
- Body Surf: His ability as a warg. He wargs into his eagle at the last second after Jon stabs him.
- Brutal Honesty: He has no illusions that humanity is any different from the animals whose minds he inhabits. "People work together when it suits 'em. They're loyal when it suits 'em. Love each other when it suits 'em. And they kill each other when it suits 'em."
- Butt Monkey: He gets no respect for his nagging suspicion of Jon, despite being completely right the whole time.
- The Cassandra: About Jon's allegiance. Lampshaded by Jon himself.
- Character Death: Orell duels Jon Snow after his allegiance becomes clear; it's a duel that he loses.
- Crazy Jealous Guy: Part of the reason he antagonizes Jon is because he has feelings for Ygritte.
Orell: I've seen you two whispering in the night, giggling like a pair of girls.
Ygritte: What, you're jealous?
Orell: Of course, I'm jealous. You should be with one of your own.
- Defiant to the End: After Jon fatally stabs him, his consciousness jumps into his eagle. He then attacks Jon and claws at his face.
- I Did What I Had to Do: Orell's decision to cut Ygritte and Jon loose on the Wall seems to be a Dirty Coward move at first, and Highborn Jon Snow certainly thinks so. However, Orell not only saved himself but many other groups of Wildlings, and could almost be considered heroic for making the hard choice. They were halfway up a dangerous 700ft climb, had a large chunk of Wall come away from them moments before and wipe out several other groups, coupled with Jon and Ygritte swinging precariously and threatening to pull them all down? You can't really fault him for deciding the most pragmatic thing to do was to cut them loose. When Jon later confronts him over it, Orell points out that Ygritte is fine with it...and she is. Ygritte never shows any animosity towards Orell (at least not for cutting the rope). This suggests that he was being practical rather than cowardly. Orell never shows himself to be a coward in any other respect.
- Emergency Transformation: Body Surfs into his eagle companion seconds before his death to try and kill Jon Snow.
- Hidden Depths: Orell's interest in Ygritte is almost a redeeming feature: when he admits his attraction to her, he's surprisingly eloquent in his depth of feeling. Then, he spoils the moment by lapsing into Crazy Jealous Guy.
Ygritte: I've never heard a kind word from your mouth.
Orell: You would if you were mine. I'd tell you that you're beautiful and fierce and wild. I'd be good to you.
- If You're So Evil, Eat This Kitten: He savvily invokes it with Jon to test his allegiance. Ultimately, Jon doesn't kill the horse breeder.
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: With Jon Snow's greatsword, right through the chest.
- Lean and Mean: Of all the Wildlings, he looks the most like he's been living rough with little food.
- Milky White Eyes: When Orell wargs into an animal, his eyes turn pure white.
- Our Werewolves Are Different: One of the terms for skinchanger is "warg", or werewolf.
- Properly Paranoid: Concerning Jon's allegiance. Jon even points this out right before he kills him.
- Prophet Eyes: While possessing the mind of his bird.
- Spared By Adaptation: In the books, Orell was one of the wildlings in Ygritte's scouting party and was actually killed by Jon. He dies in a similar manner to his book counterpart in "The Rains of Castamere".
- Taking You with Me: In "The Rains of Castamere", Orell wargs into an eagle after Jon mortally wounds him. He comes close to clawing Jon's eyes out and leaves him with permanent facial scars.
"I know we've had our differences, Tormund. But just one time, before you die, you really ought to try...crow." Played By:
"Those your parents? Open your eyes. I'm going to eat them. Do you hear me? I'm going to eat your dead mama, and I'm going to eat your dead papa. Go tell the Crows at Castle Black."
The Magnar of Thenn, one of the strongest wildling tribes under Mance's rule.
- Adaptational Villainy: In the books Styr was more of a Proud Warrior Race Guy, instead of a savage cannibal.
- An Axe to Grind: A rather huge one.
- Badass: You don't become the leader of the Thenns by being a wimp. He absolutely decimates his opponents in combat.
- Bald of Evil: The Thenns are all shaved-bald and are one of the nastier tribes of Free Folk.
- The Berserker: In contrast to his Soft-Spoken Sadist ways, in battle he's screaming and howling with wild, powerful axe blows.
- Blond Guys Are Evil/White Hair, Black Heart: Yes, he's bald, but his eyebrows show he's got platinum blond hair.
- Blood Knight: When swinging his massive axe at the Night's Watch, Styr is wearing a big smile like he's having the time of his life.
- Character Death: During his fight with the Night's Watch, he meets his end with Jon driving a smithing hammer straight into his skull.
- Co-Dragons: He and Tormund are Mance's most prominent lieutenants.
- Creepy Monotone: The few times he bothers to talk, it's in a very deliberate tone that almost sounds like he's speaking a foreign language.
- Fridge Brilliance: He IS speaking a foreign language. Thenns speak the Old Tongue in the book, and in the TV show too, judging by Ygritte's Thenn ex-lover.
- Deadly Euphemism: When Tormund asks why he came from the south instead of the north, he says he "took a detour" and "got some supper" from one of the villages. The Thenns then pull a human arm out of a bag and begin to roast it.
- Defeat Means Friendship/Demoted to Dragon: Styr, like Tormund, was one of the chieftains and leaders Mance had to defeat to unite the Free Folk under his leadership.
- Dies Wide Open: For a moment, it even looks like he's judging Jon. With a hammer sticking out of the top of his head.
- Drop the Hammer: Jon drives a smithing hammer into his skull during the Battle of Castle Black, killing him almost instantly.
- Establishing Character Moment: When he first shows up, him and his men strut into the Wildling camp, throw away the meat being cooked over the campfire, and replace it with a human arm. Pretty much every word that comes out of Styr's mouth refers to the meat south of the Wall tasting better and being "nice and fat".
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: His face and head are covered with ritual scars, like those of the rest of Thenns. He's also a really nasty character.
- Guttural Growler/Softspoken Sadist: An absolutely terrifying man who, in his first scene, never speaks in anything above a low growl.
- I'm a Humanitarian: His favorite food is crow — as in, the brothers of the Night's Watch, not the birds.
- Large And In Charge: He noticeably towers over Tormund and Ygritte, and his own men.
- Obviously Evil: Heavily scarred, eerily pale, speaks in a deep gravelly voice, and in case that didn't convince you enough, he's also a cannibal.
- Ominous Owl: His warg uses an owl in the same way Orell used his eagle.
- Pragmatic Adaptation: In the books he has no ears. The prosthetics needed to emulate this in the show would be too difficult.
- Psycho for Hire: Even scarier than the Lord of Bones.
- Remember the New Guy: He apparently saw Jon Snow during Season 3, but his first appearance (and mention) was in Season 4.
- Token Evil Teammate: It's difficult to tell, given how early it is, but thus far Styr might very well be the nastiest Wildling ever introduced on the show. At least Orell and the Lord of Bones aren't cannibals.
- What the Hell Is That Accent?: Similarly to Tormund, Styr's accent is somewhere between English and Kolokolnikov's native Russian.
- Would Axe A Girl: Then eat her afterwards.
The Lord of Bones a.k.a. Rattleshirt
"He runs, I'll chop his balls off."
"I already have a crow. Gut him!"
The leader of the Wildling tribe Ygritte belongs to. His true name is unknown; he calls himself the Lord o' Bones, while the Night's Watch mocks him as Rattleshirt.
Played By: Ian Whyte
An unidentified giant in Mance Rayder's camp.
- Acting for Two: Yet another character played by recurrent stuntman Ian Whyte, who played White Walkers in the first two seasons and the Mountain in Season 2.
- Adaptational Attractiveness: Sort of. note
- Annoying Arrows: Played with. At his size, this would likely be the case so the Night's Watch archers don't bother and he is taken out with one ballista bolt, an "arrow" by giant standards.
- The Archer: Given his size, each of his "arrows" is a cross between a ballista bolt and a rocket.
- Beast of Battle: Acts as handler for Mag's mammoth.
- Giant Mook: Serves the Wilding's war effort in this capacity.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: To anyone but Jon in the wildling camp.
Mag Mar Tun Doh Weg 'Mag the Mighty'
Played By: Neil Fingleton
The King of the Giants. The old giant and him attack the outer gate during the first day of battle at the Wall.
- Adaptational Attractiveness: As much as the other giant, anyway.
- Beast of Battle: Rides a mammoth.
- Giant Mook: After his companions are killed, he still tries to force the gates to Castle Black by himself, and nearly succeeds. With no weapons.
- Last of His Kind: As explained by Mance Rayder to Jon Snow, in "The Children".
- Mutual Kill: Takes down Grenn and five other brothers while trying to get through the outer gate to Castle Black, but dies along with them.
- Super Strength: He lifts the enormous Castle Black gate all by himself.
- The Quiet One: He only growls. He manages to make evident how pissed he is when the other giant is killed, though.
- Unstoppable Rage: When the old giant is killed, Mag gets pissed enough to lift the Castle Black gate.
- You Shall Not Pass: On the opposite side of this in "The Watchers on the Wall".
"Let them come. My roots, they're sunk deep."
"I've got no fear of what's out there. When the white cold comes, your swords and cloaks and pretty fires won't help you. Only ones left will be those alright with the gods, the real gods."
A unsavory ally of the Night's Watch, Craster is a wildling who lives north of the Wall. He lives in a fortified homestead, grandly called Craster's Keep, along with his daughter-wives
. When his daughters get old enough, he marries them and impregnates them with new children. At the time of the War of the Five Kings, he has nineteen wives.
- Abusive Parent/Domestic Abuser: His daughters are his wives; he's not a very good father or husband.
- Ascended Extra: His one scene from A Clash of Kings is developed into an larger storyline.
- Asshole Victim: Karl provokes him into a fight, so that he can kill Craster and then steal his food. Couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.
- Badass Grandpa: In Season 2, Mormont says Jon's not fit to accompany Qhorin's scouts by pointing out that he got disarmed and beaten bloody by "an old man". In-universe Memetic Badass Qhorin Halfhand immediately calls Craster "a tough old goat", suggesting that there's no shame in being beaten by him.
- Badass Boast: See his page quote above.
- Bald of Evil: More prominent in Season 3.
- Bastard Bastard: He's the bastard son of a Night's Watch ranger and a Wildling woman.
- Beard of Evil: In the third season, when he's grown it out.
- Big Screwed-Up Family: He reigns over his twisted, incestuous family by sacrificing his own sons while raping his own daughters to breed more daughters for him to rape.
- Cult: Craster's incestuous family seems to be a cult that worships the White Walkers as gods. He calls himself a "godly man" and considers the White Walkers to be the only real gods. Whenever one of his daughter-wives gives birth to a male baby, the birth is treated as a cult ceremony and greeted as "a gift to the gods".
- Deadpan Snarker: Craster is a highly sarcastic and unpleasant man.
- Deal with the Devil: He is completely left alone by the White Walkers, in exchange for his newborn sons.
- Evil Is Petty: Despite being neutral and giving food and shelter to the Night's Watch, he gives them as little food supplies as possible, and insists on receiving gratitude.
- Evil Old Folks: He's reached his elder years, and also rapes his daughters and sacrifices his sons.
- Fingerless Gloves: Craster is usually seen wearing these.
- Human Sacrifice: He leaves his male children in the snow outside, as sacrifices to the White Walkers, in exchange for them leaving him alone.
- Icy Blue Eyes: He has a very chilling gaze, which goes well with the environment he's in.
- Insistent Terminology: Everyone south of the Wall is a 'southerner' to him, period. He's also insistent on calling himself a "godly man", which he is, From a Certain Point of View.
- Jerkass: His incestuous abusive marriages aside, Craster is a sadistic, cruel bully without a single redeeming quality hidden in his vile personality.
- Jerkass Has a Point: While he gives the Night's Watch as little food as possible and wants them gone ASAP, the fact is that he does have a large family to feed, and winter is coming, so while he may be a disgusting person in many, many other ways, Craster's extremely grudging and minimalist hospitality is actually pretty reasonable. Sam tries to point this out when Rast is sowing discontent among the Watch, but is cowed into silence when Rast aggressively asks if he's siding with Craster over his brothers.
- Last of His Kind: Sort of — he is the only wildling man to be seen for miles around. Everyone but he and his daughter-wives has vanished. Let's just say there is a pretty good reason for it.
- Marry Them All: It's the Craster solution.
- Offing the Offspring: The male children, by sacrificing them to the White Walkers.
- Open Secret: Mormont and probably Benjen already know that Craster kills his sons but he is too valuable to get rid of as an ally. The "giving them to the White Walkers" part might be still a secret, though.
- Parental Incest: Marries his daughters, and then their daughters, and...
- Sacred Hospitality: His habit of giving shelter to the Night's Watch might be just so that they'll tolerate his presence and lifestyle, but his repeated and angry insistence that "I am a godly man" when called out suggests that there might be some sort of code of honour attached to it. When he's insulted in his house he attacks his guests, but they were deliberately provoking him, making it unclear who violated Sacred Hospitality first.
- Token Evil Teammate: He makes himself valuable to the Night's Watch so they'll leave him alone, but is so despicable that none of them are very happy about it.
- Too Dumb to Live: It's not a good idea to take people under your roof, insult them, give them as little food as possible, and threaten to kill them for a joke, especially when they might not have the same morals and honor their leader has. There's also the fact that Craster pulled a hatchet at Karl, while being surrounded on all sides. Sacred Hospitality includes the host as much as the guest, and he attacked first. Not to mention that the Night's Watch mostly consists of outcasts and convicted criminals — in other words, the last people you want to insult and provoke into a confrontation.
- Ugly Guy, Hot Daughter-Wives: His daughters tends to be rather attractive, in sharp contrast to him. Maybe his seed really is strong.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: The sons he sacrifices to the White Walkers end up being turned into more White Walkers.
- Would Hit a Girl: He threatens his daughter-wives with this often. Considering the type of person he is, this comes as no surprise.
- Wife Husbandry: His entire way of life is built around marrying his own daughters, and breeding more wives.
"You...you shouldn't touch me."
Sam: "I'm not giving it away. I'm giving it to you. Keep it safe for me, 'til I come back."
Craster's daughter, granddaughter, and youngest wife.
- Action Survivor: Lampshaded by Edd, who tells Sam, following the Wildling raid on Mole's Town, that since she was able to survive not only years living under Craster, the long march to the Wall, and not to mention a White Walker; that she probably survived the aforementioned raid (which she did, unbeknownst to them, thanks to Ygritte of all people). Also, during the attack on the Wall she grabs a lump of meat to beat off any possible attackers, while Janos Slynt pathetically hides in the same room.
- Adult Fear: Having a child taken away from you by an abusive caretaker because it's a boy, or eventually seeing it grow up to endure the same abuse.
- Broken Bird: Mostly averted in her case, Sam mentions that despite all the incestuous abuse she's been through, her spirit is not broken probably because she hasn't known anything but life with Craster. She simply had nothing better to compare it with.
- At one point, she suggests the name "Craster" for her newborn baby, as if it was the most natural thing in the world.
- Love Interest: She is Sam Tarly's.
- Never Learned to Read: Gilly is illiterate, like almost all wildlings. She's amazed that Sam can actually understand "marks on a piece of paper", and thinks he's some sort of wizard.
- Only One Name: She's actually surprised to learn people have last names South of the Wall.
- Stepford Smiler: Like the rest of Craster's wives, she puts on an obedient, happy face to stay on his good side.
- Parental Incest: Her father Craster has been raping his daughter-wives for several generations now — not only is Gilly his daughter, but her mother (and probably her grandmother) was as well.
- The Pollyanna: As Sam points out: she's still got hope life will get better.
- Protectorate: Sam quickly becomes her champion.
- The Ugly Guy's Hot Daughter: She's very pretty considering she's the inbred daughter-wife of a psychotic old rapist.
- Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Again, to Craster, whose daughters are his wives.
"Burn it to the ground, and all the dead with it."
Played By: Deirdre Monaghan
Craster's eldest child and first wife.
- All In The Manual: Her name.
- Canon Foreigner: She doesn't make any appearances in the books.
- Cult: She keeps up the Craster cult after Craster's death. When the last son of the incestuous family is born, she delivers him to Craster's killers and tells them to sacrifice the baby.
- Deal with the Devil: Not only with the White Walkers, but also with the Night's Watch mutineers who killed Craster and took his place. Although she does nothing to stop the constant rapes of the younger daughter-wives, she keeps them all alive by continuing the infant sacrifices. Both a figurative and literal Deal with the Devil. According to an interview with the screenwriter Bryan Cogman, the scenes in Craster's Keep were "situations beyond the Wall that didn't involve the supernatural, but rather humanity at its worst."
- Evil Matriarch: She appears to be the oldest of Craster's wife-daughters, and may very well be the first. She's also keeping up the Craster cult, although it may be out of habit or necessity as opposed to actual malice. She's likely never known anything other than the life Craster forced her to live.
- Let The Past Burn: Tells Jon Snow and the Night's Watch after they kill all the mutineers there, complete with a Spiteful Spit; to raze Craster's Keep and all of the horrible memories she and the other wives had in it, to the ground.
- Miss Exposition: Morag turns up to explain to Karl and the audience what exactly happens to the baby boys.
Played By: Jane McGrath
One of Craster's daughter-wives who Karl Tanner takes for his personal slave.
- Butt Monkey: Her only appearances involves her being brutally tormented.
- Broken Bird: Incredibly, things got worse for her after Craster dies and it shows on her face. Karl is casually violent toward her for no reason, having taken her as a personal sex slave/punching bag. When he drunkenly slams her to the ground, she merely sits back up with barely a shift in her expression.
- Canon Foreigner: She doesn't make any appearances in the books.
- Cult: Like her fellow daughter-wives, she joins in with the 'Gift for the Gods' chant.
- The Dog Bites Back: When the Night's Watch attack the mutineers, she takes the opportunity to stab her abuser in the back. This gives Jon enough time to ram Longclaw through Karl's mouth.
- Let The Past Burn: Along with Morag and the other daughter-wives, she watches Craster's Keep burn along with all its horrible memories.
- No Name Given: Despite having some significance (particularly relating to Karl), her name isn't even mentioned in the credits. The name 'Sissy' comes from the actress' CV.
"Piss on Mance Rayder! And Piss on the North! We're going as far south as south goes!"
Played By: Stephen Don
A Night's Watch deserter living among the Free Folk and part of Osha's band.
"Cut his little cock off and stuff it in his mouth."
Played By: Barry O'Connor
Another Night's Watch deserter living among the Free Folk and part of Osha's band.
Mountain tribes of the Vale that descend from the First Men and do not accept the rule of House Arryn.
Shagga, Son of Dolf
"When you meet your gods, you tell them that Shagga, Son of Dolf, of the Stone Crows sent you."
Played By: Mark Lewis Jones
Chieftain of the Stone Crows and ally to Tyrion.
Timett, Son of Timett
Played By: Tobias Winter
Red Hand of the Burned Men and ally to Tyrion.
- Adaptational Badass: Inverted; while Timmett can be assumed to be a good fighter in the show, he's visually almost indistinguishable from the others tribesmen and never fights onscreen. In the books Timmett is still a teenager, put out his own eye with a red-hot knife (presumably the show's Timmett lost his eye the same way, but it's not explained), leaps right off his horse and comes up ready to fight when it's shot from under him in Tyrion's first battle, and tears out a man's throat with the fingers of one hand.
- An Axe to Grind: He's rather fond of his axes.
- Ascended Extra: In Season 1, he wasn't even credited. He has a slightly more prominent role in Season 2.
- Beard of Barbarism: He has one, being a barbarian and all.
- The Brute/The Big Guy: Depending on how you look at it. He and his are helping out resident Jerk with a Heart of Gold Tyrion Lannister.
- Comically Missing the Point: "There are no goats, Half-man!"
- Composite Character: In the books, while Timett is also present, it is Shagga the one who Tyrion tells to "cut off [Pycelle's] manhood and feed it to the goats."
- Dumb Muscle: Timett is an uneducated savage, but he's a capable fighter.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: One of his eyes is completely burned. From the books...
- Guttural Growler: This was probably to be expected.
- Put On a Horse: In-universe, at the end of Season 2.
Chella, Daughter of Cheyk
Played By: N/A
Chieftain of the Black Ears and ally to Tyrion.
- Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Like Shagga in Season 2.
- Creepy Souvenir: Notice something weird over her clothes? Look closer... it's the ears of the men she's defeated in combat. We can see her taking another pair in "Baelor".
- Dark Action Girl: Of the Mountain Tribe leaders that ally with Tyrion.