An epic era came to an end with the final episode of HBO’s adaption of A Song of Ice and Fire that aired on May 19, this year.
However, a spark of rage broke loose among the mass with the majority of them angered by such a “stupid” ending to such a great show. But even with its weaknesses, there is no denying that Game of Thrones is one of the greatest and most popular drama series ever.
The series tells the story of Westeros, a land inhabited by seven kingdoms. And with seven kingdoms, comes along a lot of characters. And that’s why Game of Thrones has been notorious for having such a long list of characters that viewers have a tough time keeping track of who is who.
However, if you haven’t read R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series you’d be surprised to know that there are a great many more characters that the creators of the show either completely omitted or modified some characters to avoid confusion.
Whatever the reason for these ommissions might be, you’d find lovers of the book series often criticizing the show’s creators for leaving a good many main characters from the show that would have loved to see on screen.
This article lists some of the most interesting characters from the book series that didn’t make an appearance in the Game of Thrones. So, here is our tribute to all the book lovers that are sick of telling the fans of the show how much they have missed:
Caution: Do not proceed if you haven’t finished the series yet. The following article might contain potential spoilers.
36. Jeyne Westerling
Jeyne is one of those characters from the book that although wasn’t outright excluded from the series, it was replaced by a modification of the character i.e. Talisa. Jeyne Westerling was the daughter of a poor noble family. She was the one that took care of Robb Stark when he got wounded during a battle.
When Robb was under Jeyne’s care and nursing he got to know about the demise of Rickon and Bran (Robb’s brothers). And that Winterfell had been burned to ashes. This leaves Robb is a vulnerable and emotional state.
Seeing him grieving, Jeyne condoles him and they eventually have sex. To protect Jeyne’s honor, Robb marries her. However, unlike Talisa and Robb’s magnificent love story in the show, in the books, their love story isn’t that grand. But they do love her as we can see how Jeyne grieves at Robb’s death.
Another distinction between the two characters is that although Talisa attended the Red wedding, Jeyne didn’t and is still alive in the books.
35. Donal Noye
Another interesting character to miss the show is Donal Noye, the smith for House Baratheon. Donal was the one that made Stannis’ first sword. He was also the creator of Robert’s legendary Warhammer.
Donal lost his arm from an axe during the siege of Storm’s End that was lifted after a year. Once the siege was lifted and Robert became the king, Donal joined the Nights Watch.
34. Edric Dayne
Edric Dayne is the nephew of Ser Arthur Dayne and the current lord of the House of Dayne. Edric is also related to Berric Danderrion because of which he eventually joins the Brotherhood without Banners.
Edric was the one who picked up Berric’s dead body when he was killed (the first time) by Gregor Clegane in the Riverlands.
Edric remains a member of the Brotherhood without Banners under Berric and Thoros and eventually under Lady Stoneheart.
33. Raff the Sweetling
Raff the Sweetling is a soldier for the Lannisters under Ser Gregor Clegane’s command. Raff is basically a psychopath. And like many other psychopaths, he has a way with words that make you believe that he has a heart of gold (metaphorically).
In the show, Polliver is the one that kills Lommy (Arya’s friend). However, it is actually Raff the Sweetling that kills Lommy.
Similar to what happens in the show, Lommy gets a leg injury. Raff asks him, in his soft voice if he is able to walk. Lommy tells him that he can’t walk due to his injury. That is when Raff cuts his neck with a spear and laughs like a maniac while doing it.
32. Dale, Allard, and Maric Seaworth
In “A Clash of Kings” Ser Davos is the sire of his four sons, viz. Dale, Matthos, Allard, and Maric Seaworth in the battle of the black water. However, all of his sons died in Tyrion Lannister’s wildfire trap.
The death of his sons was too much for Davos. Nevertheless, he kept on fighting out of loyalty to the Onion Knight and in the name of his martyred sons.
Joramun, also known as the King beyond the wall, plays a pivotal role in the history of the North.
When the former commander of the Night’s Watch declared himself the ruler of North of the Wall, it was Joramun who brought all the free folk together. And with Brandon’s (the Stark King of Winter) aid, was able to defeat him. He also used the horn of winter to wake up giants from the earth.
This alliance was of great importance as it proved that the people of the North and those of the South can fight together when faced with a common enemy.
30. Lann the clever
Lann the Clever, the founder of the House Lannister, is the most outstanding personalities from the Age of Heroes lore.
There is no definite origin of Lann and there are several versions to his story. However, one thing common among all these is that through his wit and cleverness, he was able to take control of the Casterly Rock. This made the future bright for his family.
He is the reason why most Lannisters are not only smart and cunning but are also quite good-looking.
29. Aurane Waters
Aurane Waters fought for Stannis Baratheon. However, after the Battle of the Blackwater he bent his knee to King Joffrey and was pardoned.
Little after the pardon, he is made admiral of the King’s fleet by Cersei Lannister. Soon after, he joins the Small Counsel of King Tommen and plays a pivotal role in the King’s Landing. He also takes part in several of Cersei’s plans.
Some of his roles were shifted to Euron Greyjoy in the seventh season of the show.
28. Quentyn Martell
Quentyn was the eldest son and second child of Doran Martell. The character of Quentyn is that of an archetypal prince that sets out on a noble quest to win the heart of a lovely princess by defeating the dragons.
Quentyn Martell, although not in the series, has a major role in Martin’s “A Dance with Dragons”. According to an old agreement between the Martell and Targaryen families; Quentyn has to set out to Meereen to marry Daenerys and bring her back to Daenerys. This had to be done so that both the families would unite and reclaim the Iron Throne.
However, since the writer of the series is none other than the notorious R.R. Martin, things don’t pan out quite as one might have wanted.
Daenerys shows no interest in marrying someone she doesn’t even know and Quentyn, the charming prince, dies a painful death while taming the dragons in hopes to impress queen Daenerys.
27. Joanna Lannister
Joanna Lannister is the mother of Jaime, Cersei, and Tyrion Lannister that died while giving birth to Tyrion.
Joanna’s marriage with Tywin was a happy one. She also acted as his most trusted counselor; a job that was taken over by Kevan after her death.
After Joanna’s death, he seldom spoke of her and never got married again. Tywin blamed his wife’s death on his son Tyrion.
26. Strong Belwas
Although Belwas had no major role in the main plot of the series fans were utterly disappointed when they came to know that he wasn’t included in the TV series. Strong Belwas, a eunuch, was a slave in the fighting pits of Meereen.
Belwas is a massive fighter who doesn’t care about anything except eating and fighting. An interesting feature of his fights is that he allows his opponents to cut him once before he goes on to slaughter them.
In the book, “A Clash of Kings”, Belwas and Barristan Selmy team up with Daenerys and eventually become her two most trusted advisors.
There could be many reasons for him not to be added to the show. Such as; he was a eunuch and the show already had eunuch characters to show their perspective, he didn’t have much part to play in the overall plot, and there was not much depth to his character.
Nonetheless, Strong Belwas would have been a great addition to the show owing to his impressive physical appearance and great (humorous) dialogues.
25. Brandon Stark
Brandon Stark, the founder of House Stark, was a prominent member of the First Men.
Although much of The Age of Heroes tales are nothing but stories, there is one thing that remains from that time i.e. The Great Wall. And it was Brandon that built the great wall, thus, being called Bran the Builder.
He raised the wall with the help of the giants and constructed Winterfell as the ruling castle of the North. Without him, winter would have come to Westeros sooner than it did.
24. Tytos Lannister
Tytos Lannister was Tywin’s father and lord of Casterly Rock. He was a kind man but he was weak. That is also what Tywin spoke about him that even though Tytos loved them, he was a weak man that almost destroyed House Lannister and their legacy.
Tywin became the most powerful man in Westeros by learning from the mistakes of his father and doing everything opposite to what he did.
When the shortcomings of Tytos led to the revolt against House Lannister, it was Tywin that defeated the opposition, alone.
23. Aegon the Conqueror
Aegon the Conqueror is the most pivotal character in the history of Westeros. Aegon was the creator of the Targaryen dynasty which led to him becoming the first person to rule an (almost) entire continent.
The importance of his conquest can be noted by the fact that the succeeding years are marked by AC – Years after Aegon’s conquest.
If you haven’t read the books you’d need to recall the first episode of season five to understand who Penny is and her role in the series.
In the episode, Tyrion clearly mentions his plan to meet Daenerys Targaryen so that he can determine if she is worthy of his support or not.
In the book, however, before meeting Daenerys, Tyrion gets drunk and wanders around for a long time. During this drunken wandering, he meets Penny, a dwarf. Penny, with her brother Oppo, performed as an entertainer.
The two of them were also hired by Lord Petyr Baelish to perform at Joffrey’s wedding where they had to ride a pig and a dog. Petyr aimed to ridicule Tyrion and provoke a fight between Joffery and Tyrion to make Tyrion look bad. He would then use it against him when he would accuse Tyrion of Joffery’s murder.
Although viewers saw this scene in the TV show, it didn’t involve Penny.
21. Varamyr Sixskins
Varamyr Sixskins is known to be the most powerful warg in the books. His story is quite an interesting one based on his hatred towards his elder brother.
He lived in the north of the wall with his wilding family. He had a small physique and struggled with health problems throughout his childhood. Because of his weaknesses, he was nicknamed “Lump”. On the other hand, his elder brother “Bump” was strong, healthy, and popular among the villagers.
This made Varamyr jealous of his brother and led him to warg into one of the three dogs that his family had. The three dogs tore his brother to pieces.
When his father found Bump’s dead body being licked by the dogs, he picked up an axe and killed all the dogs. However, Lump was still in the mind of one of the dogs when they got killed. This caused Lump to go into madness. Screaming with pain, he revealed himself to his father.
Lump was banished from the village after the incident and was given to Haggon, an elder warg.
20. Big Walder and Little Walder Frey
Big Walder and Little Walder Frey are cousins belonging to the Frey Family. Both were skilled fighters and mean bullies. Little Walder is the larger of the two cousins.
Their mean nature can be seen as a depiction of the cruelty of the Freys in general.
A gorgeous Wilding girl with long honey-colored hair, Val is the sister of Mance Rayder‘s wife, Dalla.
In “A Storm of Swords”, Val is present in the tent when Jon snow is presented before Mance Rayder after being captured. Jon sees Val milking a goat beside Mance’s tent. And Val helps in delivering Dalla’s child when Stannis Baratheon’s men attack the wilding host.
The Night’s Watch captures her after they defeat the wildings while Dalla’s child dies in childbirth.
Stannis offers Jon to legitimize him as Jon Stark, make him Lord of Winterfell, and marry him to Val. However, Jon refuses the offer. He is then appointed as the Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch.
Her character reappears in “A Dance with Dragons”, and then in “A Feast of Crows”.
As there is no trace of Val in HBO’s adaption of the book series viewers that haven’t read the books have missed a chance of witnessing such a stunning and intriguing female character.
18. Erryk and Arryk
Erryk Cargyll and his twin brother Arryk Cargyll are two bodyguards of the Queen of Thorns, Lady Olenna Tyrell. Both brothers are heavily armed and extremely loyal to their Queen.
These brothers are better known as “Left and Right”, for the Queen of Thorns mustn’t be bothered with something as trivial as remembering her guards’ names.
These two brothers represent the ferocity of Lady Olenna and how cunning such an old lady can be. For if you meddle with her, these two brutes will make sure you pay.
Both the characters are utterly absent from the show in which Lady Olenna is showing to handle all matters herself.
Coldhands is a mysterious character from beyond the Wall. He is one of the characters from Martin’s books that were most missed in the TV series.
There is nothing known about the character’s past. No one even knows his actual name and “Coldhands” was the name given to him by Samwell Tarly.
There have been several speculations about Coldhands some of which were debunked by Martin, himself. However, what we do know to be true is that Coldhands is a wight and must not be confused with a white walker. And although he doesn’t need to breathe he cannot cross the Wall because the magic of the Wall prevents him to do so.
Coldhands had some serious roles in the story, which is one of the reasons why fans are confused at his omission from the show. In “A Storm of Swords” Coldhands rescues, unexpectedly, Samwell and Gilly when the got attacked by wights.
In “A Dance with Dragons”, the fifth book of the series, Coldhands also guides Bran and his companions to Three-Eyed Raven’s hiding place.
16. Osney and Osfryd Kettleblack
Osney and Osfryd Kettleblack are three sellswords used by Cersei for her schemes to discredit and humiliate her enemies from the court.
These brothers are the key players in the game played by the two queens. And when things went south for Ceresi, they were the ones having a major role in her fall from grace.
Osney and Osfryd, have a third brother Osmund Kettleblack whose role is a major one as compared to his brother’s. Thus, he has a separate description, as follows:
15. Osmund Kettleblack
Osmund’s omission from the TV series was a huge loss for those that haven’t read the books. Because his character is extremely charismatic owing to his mannerisms and humor but also utterly cunning. This adds depth to the character which the audience appreciates a lot.
Osmund is from the House Kettleblack, known to be a hedge knight. Osmund, in “A Clash of Kings”, starts serving Cersei during the War of Five Kings. His service was Cersei includes spying on Tyrion, her brother.
However, little did she know that he was also serving Tyrion by spying on her. And what adds more complexity to the character is the fact that both Lanisters were unaware that Osmund had been working for Littlefinger even before he had entered the Kings Landing.
When the Faith Militant captures Cersei and she confesses her sins, she betrays Osmund by claiming that she had slept with him even before her husband’s death. Consequently, Osmund gets imprisoned.
14. Reek – The First
In the third season of the TV show, Theon Greyjoy was transformed into a Reek. However, what the fans of the show are unaware of is that, in the books, Theon is no the first Reek.
Reek smelled so bad that no one could stand near him so he slept in the pigsty. He was said to never bathe. However, the truth was that he bathed three times a day to hide his true smell. But all his attempts failed to hide the hideous smell. According to Maester Uthor, this smell was a result of some sort of disease.
At the time when Ramsay’s mother came to Dreadfort, she asked for a servant for her son. As a joke, Lord Roose gave her Reek. But, as it turns out, Reek and Ramsay became very close. And even though Reek had no experience of arms training, he taught Ramsay all about fighting.
In 297 AC, when Ramsay came to Dreadfort, he was accompanied by Reek. Since then, both became notorious for the rapes and murders they committed.
When Lady Donella Hornwood was going back to Hornwood after the Harvest feast, she gets abducted by Ramsay. Claiming to be Lord of Hornwood, Ramsay forces Donella to marry him and locks her in a tower where she is left to die.
Rodrik’s men set out to capture Ramsay and Reek. Both of them get caught during one of their “endeavors”. However, Ramsay, in an attempt to hide his identity, poses as Reek and is captured. While the actual Reek is killed by the men who think him to be Ramsay.
When Theon takes over Winterfell, he frees Ramsay (still posing as Reek) scared of being slaughtered by Stark bannermen. Ultimately, Ramsay reveals his true identity and betrays Theon by imprisoning him.
Little is known about the origins of the first Reek, except for his unbearable odor and vicious fighting style.
However, all of this wasn’t shown in the TV show and Ramsay’s story was simplified by making Theon the first Reek in the show.
Gerold Dayne, commonly known as Darkstar, is an exceptional swordsman. Gerold is associated with a small branch of House Dayne.
Apart from being a perfect swordsman, Gerold is also known for having a shady character. And despite his treacherous nature Arianne Martell is in love with him. She knows him to be the most good-looking man in all of Dorne.
According to the book series, Obara Sand is on the lookout to kill Darkstar on the orders of Doran Martel.
12. Mya Stone
Mya Stone is one of the (many) bastards of King Robert I Baratheon. She is from the Vale which is why she has “Stone” in her name. Because the surname “Stone” is given to all bastards from Vale.
Mya helped Catelyn Stark as a guide when she brought a captive (Tyrion Lannister) to get to Eryie so that he can meet Lysa Arryn.
King Robert, aware of her existence, wants to bring her to her court. However, Cersei convinced him not to; probably to avoid the embarrassment of having her husband’s bastard child in the court.
According to the books, Mya is still working as a guide in Vale to help passengers from Bloody Gate and Eyrie; under House Royce.
11. Aegon Frey
Grandson of Walder Frey, Aegon was a mentally disturbed young man. He entertained Walder’s guests at the Red wedding wearing fool-like colored clothes.
When the killings began at the Red wedding, Aegon hid under a table. However, he was grabbed by Catelyn who put a knife to his throat demanding Walder (his grandfather) to release Robb. However, Walder didn’t mind trading a dumb-minded grandchild for a son.
As soon as Lord Roose Bolton stabs Robb, Catelyn runs the blade through Aegon’s throat, instantly killing the kid. After this, Catelyn is killed by Raymund Frey.
Aegon, more popularly known as Jinglebell, doesn’t appear in HBO’s adaption of the books. Instead of Aegon, Catelyn threatened to and ultimately killed one of Walder Frey’s young wives in an attempt to save Robb’s life.
10. Garlan the Gallant
Ser Garlan Tyrell (also referred to as Garlan the Gallant) is Loras Tyrell’s older brother and Mace Tyrell’s second son.
Although both the brothers resemble physically, their interests can’t be further apart. As, unlike his brother, Garlan is utterly uninterested in attaining glory.
Bearing Renly Baratheon’s armor, Garlan leads the joint Tyrell and Lannister forces. His opponents (Stannis Baratheon’s army) mistake him for Renly’s ghost and are struck with terror and confusion. The joint Tyrell and Lannister forces gain victory owning to this misunderstanding.
Garlan has made frequent appearances playing key roles in the books’ storyline. However, he is completely absent from the series.
9. Jon Connington
Jon is Armond Connington’s (Lord of Griffin’s Roost), only son. He is one of those characters whose story was given to another character in the show.
This decision was a bummer for most fans as Jon was among the most intriguing characters of the book series.
During Robert’s Rebellion, Jon proved loyal to Targaryens. However, Robert Baratheon defeated Jon who was then exiled. He spent a long and difficult exile in Essos. It was believed that he drank himself to death. However, we find that wasn’t true.
Jon’s tale of exile is a rather complex tale with interesting subplots.
In the show when Jorah Mormont caught greyscale after his fight with the stonemen, it was actually Jon who made the sacrifice for Tyrion.
8. Vargo Hoat
Vargo Hoat, a vicious leader who’s dark and sadistic who not only cut off Jaime Lannister’s hand but also tried to rape and kill Brienne. If you think you’ve already witnessed these events; you’re not wrong. Because Vargo Hoat was replaced by Locke (a much digestible version of the character) in the TV show.
But even with the similarities in character and storyline, both characters are quite different. For starters, Locke and his band of soldiers have always been loyal to Roose Bolton. Whereas, Vargo was loyal to Tywin Lannister before starting working for Roose.
Another distinction is that Locke went to the Wall in the fourth season of the show. On the other hand, Vargo never went to the Wall as he died a miserable death at the hands of Gregor Clegane (commonly referred to as The Mountain) at Harrenhal. Although Locke’s death in the series was a cruel one, it was nothing compared to the Vargo’s as depicted in the books.
Another major difference between the two characters is that Locke is a serious character; whereas, Vargo is a rather ridiculous one owing to his lisp.
7. Jeyne Poole
Jeyne Poole is Sansa Stark’s childhood friend and an important character in the books. However, one may argue that she was merely a shield for Sansa and Arya as she sacrificed herself for them at multiple instances.
In the fifth season of the show, everyone was enraged at the abusive relationship between Ramsay Bolton and Sansa. However, none of this ever happened in the books. Instead, it was Jeyne who married Ramsay and bore all his abuses and torture.
The creator’s decision of transferring Jeyne’s role to Sansa can be applauded as it not only adds more depth to the character but also saved the show from being a slow-burner as she would have otherwise been stuck in Vale for two to three seasons.
Note: I might have cheated a bit here. Because, technically, Jeyne appeared in the pilot of Game of Thornes (even if for just a second). But compared to her role in the books, her appearance in the pilot episode is negligible.
6. Victarion Greyjoy
One of the most interesting subplots from the books that were not shown on the TV series was that of the Greyjoy family. And if Yara (known as Asha in the books) gets not more than five minutes in a season it is quite obvious that we do not see her uncles in the show, at all.
The Greyjoy siblings, of which Victarion is the bravest, strive to take control of the Iron Islands. In the book “A Feast For Crows” Euron Greyjoy calls for a Kingsmoot for the next ruler of the Iron Islands. Although Victarion would have been the most suitable conquer (as was Euron’s wish), his cunning brother Euron wins the day with the help of Dragon Horn. Despite his hatred towards his brother, Victarion accepts his brother’s claim to be the next king in the name of family loyalty.
Victarion serves the leader of the Iron Islands navy.
5. Edric Storm
Edric is one of the many bastards of King Robert Baratheon. However, unlike others. Edric has a very solid role, at least in the books.
Edric was brought up at Storm’s End before Stannis brought him (now aged twelve) back to Dragonstone. Unfortunately, now Edric was under the same roof as priestess Red Witch Melisandre who tortured him, leeched him and used his royal blood to curse the likes of Balon Greyjoy, Robb Stark, and Joffrey Baratheon.
He was eventually saved from the priestess by Ser Davos Seaworth.
Edric’s story was majorly transferred to Gendry (also King Robert’s bastard) so that the show could be made a little less complicated.
4. Arianne Martel
Most fans of the show agree that the creators really messed up the Dornish storyline. On top of that, however, they also removed one of the most promising Dornish characters from the TV series.
Arianne, Doran Martel’s eldest child, is a cunning, seductive, and manipulative heir of the throne of Dorne.
Her happy life in the Westeros comes to an end when she hears the news of her uncle’s (Oberyn) death. She then plots revenge using Princess Myrcella (Cersei’s daughter). In the books, the Dornish story is centered at Arianne after her uncle’s death.
Arianne had a major role in Martin’s “A Feast for Crows” and omitting her from the show brought an uproar from the fans.
3. Lady Stoneheart
Catelyn Stark was killed during the Red Wedding massacre and her body was thrown in the river. However, after three days, the Brotherhood without Banners found her dead body. Their leader, Berric Danderrion, resurrects Catelyn from the dead by giving her the kiss of fire and dying in the process.
The resurrected Catelyn is a rather different character and is given the name of Lady Stoneheart. She has a soft, milky flesh (as a result of being dead underwater) and her hair is white and brittle. Moreover, the lethal cut from the night of the wedding is still present. And for her to speak, she needs to cover that wound.
She seeks revenge for what was done to her family during the unfoldings of the Red Wedding. She kills any and every person even remotely linked to the Red Wedding including Freys, Lannisters, and Boltons.
The reason for her absence from the series can be that her main purpose in the story was to seek revenge. And there is essentially no vitality of her character in the bigger picture.
2. Aegon Targaryen
When Tyrion is fleeing Westeros after killing Tywin Lannister (his father), he meets the young Griff. This meeting was enough to realize that something was not quite right with the young griff. Mainly because it was improbable for a lowborn to be so witty, educated, and well-spoken in several languages.
Tyrion realizes that the young griff is, in fact, Aegon Targaryen who was supposedly killed by Gregor Clegane. This is later confirmed by Aegon himself.
However, as the rumor goes, maybe that particular storyline was omitted from the TV series because the Young griff is an imposter and Aegon actually died at the end of Robert’s Rebellion.
Patchface, a minor yet mysterious and interesting character from the books, is a jester. He is called Patchface because of the green and red patches tattooed on his face and blad head.
He was traveling to Dragonstone to amuse the Baratheon children when his ship broke down killing everyone but him. He reached the shore, however, all of is humor was dead by then. And all that was left were the random blabberings about undead creatures and evils that prevail underwater.
Stannis’s daughter Shireen Baratheon likes the weird jester who brings joy in her life. He was probably absent from the show because of his minor role in the plot.
Now that we at the end of a long list of characters that weren’t included in the show, it is time for you guys to let us know which one is your favorite one that you would have loved to have on the show. Moreover, if there are any characters from Martin’s books that I might have missed do let me know in the comments below.