You Win or You Die
Game of Thrones Season 1



Critic Ratings: 20
Critics Consensus

The cinematic, fast-paced "You Win or You Die" thrusts the plot forward while hinting at painful moments looming for fans.

Episode Info

Ned confronts Cersei about her secrets; Jon takes his Night's Watch vows; Drogo promises to lead the Dorthraki to King's Landing.


Mark Addy
as King Robert Baratheon
Alfie Allen
as Theon Greyjoy
Sean Bean
as Eddard "Ned" Stark
Emilia Clarke
as Daenerys Targaryen
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau
as Jaime Lannister
Michelle Fairley
as Catelyn Stark
Peter Dinklage
as Tyrion Lannister
Aidan Gillen
as Petyr Baelish
Jack Gleeson
as Joffrey Baratheon
Iain Glen
as Jorah Mormont
Lena Headey
as Cersei Lannister
Harry Lloyd
as Viserys Targaryen
Richard Madden
as Robb Stark
Rory McCann
as Sandor "The Hound" Clegane
Sophie Turner
as Sansa Stark
Charles Dance
as Tywin Lannister
Jason Momoa
as Khal Drogo
Peter Vaughan
as Maester Aemon
Gethin Anthony
as Renly Baratheon
Donald Sumpter
as Maester Luwin
Owen Teale
as Alliser Thorne
Ian McElhinney
as Barristan Selmy
John Bradley
as Samwell Tarly
Julian Glover
as Grand Maester Pycelle
Dominic Carter
as Janos Slynt
Dar Salim
as Qotho
Robert Sterne
as Small Council Steward
Simon Lowe
as Wine Merchant
Brian Fortune
as Bowen Marsh
Show More Cast

You Win or You Die Photos

Critic Reviews for You Win or You Die

All in all another fine episode, let down only by the absence of the Imp Tyrion (Peter Dinklage).

Mar 14, 2019 | Full Review…

Okay, raise you hand if you saw that coming. Really? 'Cause even with Baelish's little porn-assisted monologue, I didn't.

Mar 21, 2016 | Full Review…

Now that it's in motion, its momentum gets more undeniable week by week. And "You Win or You Die" was the series' most thrilling and thematically rich hour to date.

Mar 14, 2019 | Full Review…

Pluses: Khal Drogo called Dani "moon of my life." Aw. Direwolf appearance (Ghost). Hilarious woman-on-woman porno-coaching from Littlefinger.

Mar 22, 2016 | Full Review…

The Littlefinger scene: So much to unpack! He is turning out to be one of my favorite characters.

Mar 22, 2016 | Full Review…

The action has been steadily climbing since eppy one, and we're finally getting some of the fruits of that labor.

Mar 14, 2019 | Full Review…

There's an interesting contrast throughout the episode between those who know exactly who they are (Cersei, Littlefinger, Khal Drogo) versus those who don't (Ned, Jon Snow, perhaps Jaime Lannister).

Mar 22, 2016 | Full Review…

The hour went very quickly, and yet the landscape of Westeros and the Free Cities changed forever.

Mar 22, 2016 | Rating: 4.8/5 | Full Review…

[This episode] sees the consequences of this "game" continue to reach their bloody fruition. If there's a theme for this week, betrayal is certainly one of the top contenders.

Apr 10, 2019 | Full Review…

There was a real sense throughout the episode that things are being set up for an almighty showdown, and it's coming soon.

Apr 10, 2019 | Rating: 4.5/5 | Full Review…

What a terrific episode (probably my favorite so far), and especially in the way it turned the spotlight on the characters who are villains in Ned Stark's version of the story.

Mar 14, 2019 | Full Review…

So much happened in this episode... it wasn't until the credits rolled that I realized we hadn't seen Tyrion at all. And I didn't even mind.

Mar 14, 2019 | Full Review…