‘Game of Thrones’: Who did it?

Updated 1:59 PM EDT, Mon April 14, 2014

Story highlights

Sunday's "Game of Thrones" leaves us with a major "whodunnit?"

There is no shortage of players who could be behind the "Purple Wedding"

Here, we take a look at who we think the main suspects are

Editor’s Note: This story contains spoilers for the “The Lion and the Rose,” the April 13 episode of HBO’s “Game of Thrones.”

(CNN) —  

So, that happened.

Fresh on the heels of the infamous Red Wedding, Sunday’s “Game of Thrones” served up more murderous matrimony. But, with what fans have dubbed the “Purple Wedding,” many of us finally got something we’d been hoping for since season one.

As the loathsome King Joffrey lay on the ground doing his best impersonation of Violet Beauregarde from “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory,” one question sprung to mind after the obligatory high fives: Who did it?

Certainly there is no shortage of folks who would have loved to off the sadistic, smug boy king. Here, we run down some of the key suspects and why they may have been behind the deadly deed. Let us know your theory in the comments (and, book readers, no spoilers, please!)


He’s obviously Cersei’s top suspect. And it’s not like he doesn’t have reasons.

There was no love lost between Tyrion and his nephew (remember the much-celebrated slap?) even before Joffrey went out of his way to humiliate him repeatedly, both before and after the wedding.

Slicing up his gift of a rare and priceless book? Check. Wine on the head? Check. Trying to force him into a humiliating performance at the feast? Check.

Was it all just too much for Tyrion? Not hard to imagine.


And then there’s Tyrion’s wife. Joffrey was responsible for the deaths of her father, mother and brother. And that’s on top of having her publicly beaten and tossing her aside for a more politically useful marriage. (Not that she wanted anything to do with him by that point.)

Sansa may be as close to an innocent as still exists in King’s Landing. But what better time than Joffrey’s wedding day to exact some revenge?

Oberyn Martell

“The Lannisters aren’t the only ones who pay their debts.”

When the Martells sent fiery warrior Oberyn to the wedding in place of his brother, Prince Doran, it was a not-so-subtle hint that they haven’t forgotten, or forgiven, that Oberyn’s sister, Elia, was raped and killed by Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane, who serves the Lannisters.

It only took hearing a Lannister song, “The Rains of Castamere,” to send Oberyn into an anti-Lannister stabbing fit at a brothel. Was murdering Joffrey his plan all along?

The Tyrells

The wedding was over. Margaery was a queen. But Margaery and the rest of the Tyrell family, particularly Margaery’s grandmother Olenna, had no doubts about what a rotten little bastard (literally) Joffrey was.

It’s possible they’ve concocted a scheme to off Joffrey, but still press their claim for the Iron Throne now that Margaery has a crown on her head.

Stannis and Melisandre

As Jaime told Joffrey, the war is not over.

We assume Joffrey’s transition to a lovely shade of purple was due to poisoning. But could it have been more dark magic from the Red Priestess instead?

It’s easy to focus on the people who were at the wedding. But we’ve already seen what Melisandre can do to a foe without having to be in his presence. Could this have been an otherworldly announcement that Stannis is down, but not out?

Somebody else?

Seriously, who doesn’t have one reason or another to want Joffrey dead?

Lord Varys isn’t called “The Spider” for nothing. He’s sneaky, as well as professing to be the only person in Westeros who truly wants what’s best for the kingdom. He could have decided that’s not Joffrey.

Knight-turned-fool Ser Dontos was obviously up to something. Was this part of a plan to save Sansa and avenge his humbling by Joffrey?

It’s hard to imagine how Daenerys could have played a part from across the Narrow Sea. But could someone loyal to the Targaryens have made a move to weaken the Lannisters’ hold on the throne?

We can presume it will all become clear in time. Meanwhile, we’ll make a mental note to never, ever, accept a wedding invitation in Westeros.