Perceived as arguably one of the weaker characters at the beginning of Game of Thrones, Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner) has come a long way in six seasons. So far that it might take her straight to the Iron Throne.
Of all the so-called kings and queens in the Seven Kingdoms, none of them deserve or even earned the right to rule from the Iron Throne more than Sansa. Over her years, Sansa has been held prisoner, tortured, used, defiled, and stripped of her naive view of the world. She has undoubtedly come out stronger and more clear of mind than any other character.
In the beginning, all Sansa wanted was to live in King’s Landing, marry a prince, be beloved by all and live happily ever after. But that didn’t happen. Instead, Sansa learned what ruling a kingdom was really like. She learned kings and princes aren’t like the ones in the storybook, she learned that just because you’re from a great house doesn’t mean the people will love you, and most importantly, she learned you can’t trust anyone.
The first peg in the wheel of her character arc was Joffrey Baratheon (Jack Gleeson). She sided with him on the road to King’s Landing when Nymeria attacked him. Instead of telling the truth to save her sister, she sided with the future king and her own direwolf was executed. This sequence then snowballed into seasons of psychological torture from Joffrey.
Joffrey not only murdered Sansa’s father in front of her, but also paraded around her brother and mother’s death and even forced her to marry Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage). Now, her marriage to Tyrion was a good lesson. He proved that not everyone in King’s Landing is awful. Tyrion was always kind to Sansa and let her know that she was better than any of the lies Joffrey tortured her with. If she takes the Iron Throne one day, there is a great chance that Tyrion will be there to support and guide her as a potential advisor.
While she did escape King’s Landing with the help of Littlefinger (Aidan Gillan), Sansa quickly learned he should never be trusted. The man not only tried to use her name for political gain, but he married her off to someone far worse than Joffrey. With Joffrey, Sansa learned to be mentally tough and not let words hurt her. However, with Ramsay Bolton (Iwan Rheon), she learned to be physically tough as well. She even jumped off the walls of Winterfell to escape his grasp. That’s Iron Throne-level badassery.
From mental and physical toughness, Sansa is not only a survivor, but a born leader. She had to go through these horrors to bring out the strength she had hidden within. During the Battle of the Bastards, she’s the one who petitioned Littlefinger to deliver the Knights of the Vale to help finish off Ramsay’s army. She’s the one who wants to put Winterfell back to its original glory and, while maybe not in the total noble Ned Stark way, she’s doing it with a little more swagger.
While yes, she brutally had Ramsay killed by his own dogs, it was justified. If Sansa ruled the Seven Kingdoms, she would rule with a kind heart, but a firm first. She’s learned how to rule nobly from her father, she watched how to not be a psychotic ruler from Joffrey and Ramsay, and she knows the people of the North and King’s Landing.
While Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) is the top ruler on most people’s lists, she’s never stepped foot in King’s Landing. Yes, she’s ruled over cities after freeing their slaves, but that’s much different than ruling the Seven Kingdoms. Daenerys is one of the few other characters with a kind soul, but she is also a harsh ruler. She has no problem putting people in their place with fear much like the Mad King and even Joffrey.
Sansa is reminded that “The North Remembers” and the people want to see the Starks rule again. If she gets the Iron Throne, Sansa would rule with a firm hand and a kind heart. Take Theon (Alfie Allen), the Iron-born traitor, for instance. While married to Ramsay, Theon was constantly turning Sansa into him for wanting to escape Winterfell. Instead of letting that betrayal get to her (and his betrayal to her family previously), Sansa kept reminding Theon who he really was and not the scrappy dog Ramsay treated him as. Because of that kindness, he helped her escape and reunite with Jon Snow.
Season 7 is bound to prove the leadership that is within Sansa. We only got to see a piece of it in season 6 and even that leadership proved to be worthy of the Iron Throne. Even the remaining Stark children believe Sansa should rule, at least the actors who portray them. Now, three of the four said she should rule Winterfell and the great Jon Snow (Kit Harington) told Entertainment Weekly that Sansa should be on the Iron Throne and Jon back at The Wall.
Jon Snow might know nothing, but he might know a little something about this.