Going into the third episode of Game of Thrones' final season, it was unclear if the Night King would live to fight another day. Given the stakes of the battle and the amount of firepower involved, there were many reasons to believe that the icy Big Bad with those bright blue eyes, who has been the main source of existential anxiety for the show's heroes for the last few years, would bite the dust in epic fashion.
Yes, three episodes of the show remain, with more than a few military conflicts to resolve, but the Night King doesn't exactly play well with others and this episode was built up as his last stand. This was his big shot to prove himself. Too bad he totally fucking choked.
Sorry, there's no nicer way to put it. Though he was outgunned two-to-one in the dragon department, he ended up having a better tactical plan than his many human enemies. As the warriors of Winterfell sent Dothraki off to their deaths and wasted their dragons on wild goose chases, the Night King's army kept things simple: Flood the zone. Taking a page from the zombies in World War Z, the Night King's troops just kept charging until they got through every obstacle thrown in their way, eventually gaining access to both the crypts and the inner sanctum where Bran, aka The Three-Eyed Raven, was stashed as bait. Bran thought the Night King would want him; he was right.
After working his way through Winterfell, the Night King and his squad of White Walkers arrived at the Weirwood Tree. Theon Greyjoy, on his path to redemption after season of suffering and humiliation, got his chance to show off his skills with a bow and arrow. (He even got a weird "You're a good man" endorsement from Bran.) But he didn't stand a chance against the Night King, who viciously killed Theon and then took one of the slowest, most melodramatic walks ever put to film. Then Arya emerged from the darkness and stabbed him with Valyrian steel. RIP the Night King.