Actors of the hit show

Actors of the hit show "Game of Thrones" pose for a picture during filming of the final season. 

“Winter is Coming,” the eighth and final season of HBO’s smash hit franchise “Game of Thrones” premieres Sunday, April 14. Before that, here’s a look back at the five best episodes from the first seven seasons.

  1. “Battle of the Bastards.” Season 6, episode 9. If you ever watched any of the “Lord of the Rings” films you will know how epic those battles were. In this episode, it single handedly tops all those battles with this 30-minute long battle scene. It’s a gritty affair, but so satisfying once it’s all said and done. This is peak “Game of Thrones,” and this will be something no other show will ever be able to top.

  2. “Hardhome.” Season 5, episode 9. For years, one of the show’s antagonists, the White Walkers, were only teased and not shown what threat they can be. “Hardhome” changes that. The last 20 minutes showcases the pure shock and awe of these characters along with another film-like battle scene that blows away viewers.

  3. “The Rains of Castamere.” Season 3, episode 9. “Game of Thrones” has had episodes that constantly break the internet and has social media in shock and awe. However, no other episode or event has left the internet in shock quite as much as “The Rains of Castamere.” The Red Wedding is the most notorious event in “Game of Thrones” history, and its depiction in the show did not pull any punches. This truly showed that no character in this show is safe.

  4. “The Mountain and the Viper.” Season 4, episode 8. Warning: if you cannot handle blood and gore you probably shouldn’t be watching “Game of Thrones,” but definitely do not watch this episode. Without a doubt, “The Mountain and the Viper” features the most gruesome death in the show, as well as one of the best choreographed fight scenes in the show.

  5. “Blackwater.”  Season 2, episode 9. “Blackwater” showcased the first massive battle that showed what the creators of this show can truly do when given the resources. Heavily inspired by “Lord of the Rings” fight scenes, “Blackwater” actually turns out better than its inspiration.