By Megan McCluskey
Updated: May 13, 2019 2:43 PM ET | Originally published: June 17, 2016

Warning: This post contains spoilers for Game of Thrones season 8.

The fifth episode of Game of Thrones‘ eighth season has come and gone, which means we’ve now seen Cersei, Euron and the Golden Company face off with with the newly-minted Mad Queen Daenerys. Blood was shed and lives were lost during the episode — something that’s become the norm in the penultimate installment of each season of the HBO drama.

The decision to have a season’s climax occur in its second-to-last episode is a narrative choice that works for Thrones. Now, that’s not to say that major plot developments don’t occur in the show’s season finales (cough cough, Jon Snow’s death). But while the final episode tends to tie up loose ends and introduce new storylines for the following year, the second-to-last generally functions as the axis on which the events of the season turn.

So now that the King’s Landing clash has decided the fate of the realm, let’s take a look back at all the insane things that happened in the penultimate episodes of Thrones‘ eight seasons.

Write to Megan McCluskey at megan.mccluskey@time.com.

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