Curtain Call: Iwan Rheon

boltondinner

♪ Ding dong the bastard’s dead. Which bastard? The Bolton bastard. Ding dong the Bolton bastard’s dead ♪

It finally happened! At the end of “Battle of the Bastards,” Ramsay Bolton was dispatched in the most poetically gruesome manner imaginable.

After being beaten to a bloody pulp, Ramsay regained consciousness in the kennels with Sansa staring at him through the bars. After a brief exchange in which she affirmed that she has survived his abuse while he will be lost to history, she watched as his own hounds ate him alive.

It wasn’t the “death by dragon” that Iwan Rheon had hoped for but it was “epically nasty” and a well-earned, thoroughly satisfying end for such a despicable character.

Regardless of the controversy that surrounded parts of Ramsay’s storyline, Iwan Rheon deserves immense recognition (ideally in the form of an Emmy, but … oh well) for his portrayal of the bastard of Bolton.

He imbued a potentially lugubrious villain with a maniacal joy that set Ramsay apart from his villainous predecessor, Joffrey, and charged every scene he appeared in with a frenetic energy that made our skin crawl and set even the most casual viewer on edge.

The great irony about Iwan Rheon, though, is that, prior to Game of Thrones, he was best known for playing meek introverts.

I first heard about Rheon back in 2009 when he played the high-strung, suicidal teenager, Moritz Stiefel, in the original London cast of Spring Awakening, for which he won a Laurence Olivier Award. Shortly afterwards, he was cast in the hit series, Misfits, as the painfully shy juvenile delinquent with powers of invisibility, Simon Bellamy.

Simon

During his tenure on Game of Thrones, Rheon appeared in a number of films and television shows, most notably Vicious, a multi-camera sitcom in which he played Ian McKellen and Derek Jacobi’s sweet, naïve neighbor, Ash.

He’s also a singer-songwriter and released his first album Dinard last year, which included a duet with his brother, Aled Rheon.

With all that in mind, it’s a testament to the power of his performance as Ramsay that many fans now struggle to picture him playing anything but a villain.

“I want to try and move away from bad guys because I really fear being typecast,” Rheon said in an interview with the Independent. “Because Ramsay is the first role like that I’ve ever played and it’s a bit annoying it’s the one that everyone knows. I’d hate that it would just be that… I wouldn’t want to be an actor anymore.”

His upcoming roles include a soldier driven to paranoia by isolation in the science-fiction horror film, SUM1, a supportive neighbor in the coming-of-age indie drama, Daisy Winters and young Hitler applying for art school in the dark comedy, Adolf the Artist, which Rheon has described as his most challenging role yet.

So, it doesn’t look like he’ll be wanting for variety any time soon. Though his performance as Ramsay Bolton will surely leave a lasting and haunting impression on Game of Thrones, I’m looking forward to watching Rheon play a wide range of characters moving forward. It’s a testament to the versatility of his filmography thus far (as well as his charisma as an individual) that, despite the extremity of Ramsay’s personality, fans can separate him from his character.

He’s a brilliant actor with the rare ability to so fully inhabit extremes in human nature, from panicked timidity to sadistic joy, that it’s difficult to believe it’s the same man playing all these roles. He deserves to be recognized as such.

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150 responses

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    1. “If you think this has a happy ending…”

      Well yes Ramsay, it did – You got messed up bruh.

      Love the actor though, Misfits is still one of my fav shows. He played Ramsay perfect.

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    2. Thank the maker above. Getting bored of Sansa debate.

      Iwan Rheon is one of favourite actors, and I will write a bit, more then usual, shortly!

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    3. Iwan Rheon’s facial expressions are in such a class of their own they deserve their own award. Bravo, Iwan! I won’t miss the bastard, but I will miss you.

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    4. Iwan absolutely elevated the material he was often given, putting such a unique spin on line delivery and presence that he quickly became my favorite actor on the show, and one of my favorite villain performances since Ledger’s Joker.
      In his final scene alone, I would put the way he delivered “Hello, Sansa” against any of the actors with Emmy nominations for their work.
      I don’t think any of us will miss Ramsay, but I’ll sure as hell miss Iwan Rheon. Here’s to a great career ahead!

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    5. I hated Ramsay. I loathed Ramsay. I not only wanted him to die, but after all the suffering, I wanted him to die horribly. I’m a peaceful person and yet this character I wanted to suffer so much because he needed his comeuppance…

      Part of that was because of the writing. But the biggest part of that was because Iwan Rheon was incredible in this role. I’ve seen him in other things like Vicious where he couldn’t be further from Ramsay, so it’s a testament to some amazing acting that he got us to loathe him more than we ever hated Joffrey or Roose. Bravo.

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    6. Oh man, I rewatched last night and Iwan was absolutely at the top of his game in Battle of the Bastards. That Evil, Sadistic, grin of his was completely Terrifying, and Chilling… and yet somehow funny (?) at the same time. And the extent to which he keeps it up even when things are quite clearly lost is an interesting choice. Just, Bravo Iwan. By the end, I hated Ramsey much more than Joffery. Perfectly done. 🙂

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    7. People say Ramsay was a one-note villain but man if he didn’t have one of my favorite scenes of the series when Roose named him an official Bolton. Iwan did a wonderful job of showing the depth of the character in that scene. Ramsay was a psychopathic monster, but he also had deep rooted insecurities regarding his place in society. Too bad that wasn’t explored more. But either way that isn’t on Iwan. He nailed the material he was given.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCECeic9XK0

      ^^ Such a wonderful scene.

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    8. Sorry, but all the major GoT actors will forever be associated with their GoT characters. They are just too iconic now.

      They’ll take different roles, but Iwan will always be Ramsay to people, Sophie will always be Sansa, Kit will always be Jon ****ing Snow.

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    9. I’m really gonna miss him, ever since joff death he’s been the major “Villain” in the show, but I guess the HS and the NK will fight for that title now.

      nonetheless I’m still gonna need this 😀 it’s cheaper than therapy…

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    10. The show isn’t as good without Ramsay, Joffrey, Roose or Tywin. I’ll miss that dude’s special brand of chaos.

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    11. Iwan’s a wonderful actor. As iconic as Ramsay is, he was great as Simon and Moritz and other roles too, and I have faith he’ll keep on making a big impression.

      Thanks for being a gleefully evil fuck all these years, Iwan. We’ll miss you.

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    12. Iwan Rheon is an incredibly gifted and committed actor who managed to fully bring this despicable character to life. As an excellent musician as well, I am certain that he will keep making everyone around the world fall in love with his acting and his voice. He truly deserves to be recognised as one of the best of our generation. Wish him all the best and if he happens to read this, WE LOVE YOY IWAN! Thank you for being our favourite villain in our favourite show.

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    13. On man, Iwan, I have tried to rewatch ep9 and one of the reasonsI find so difficult is that I can’t stand to watch that face. Which means he did something extremely well.
      I sincerely wish him gentler roles. He is a terrific actor.

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    14. Dee Stark:
      I never admitted this but I have always found him hot. Even as Ramsay.

      Why.

      I admit it now lol. He is not only an amazing actor but a really handsome man as well.

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    15. Dee Stark,

      Knowing you, it is probably because he originally auditioned to be Jon Snow. You do not have Ramsay issues, you just have serious Jon Snow issues. That’s better, imo!

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    16. Kudos Iwan, job well done. Loved to hate ya!

      I think I still have Jack as my favorite most hated character.

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    17. I will never forget the whole thing with Theon and Ramsay at the beginning, during season three, when we didn’t know who this guy was. It was such a huge mystery, my sister and I had our heads scratching for weeks. Like ACTUALLY

      That was so well done

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    18. Iwan is great. I hope we see more of him and playing a likeable character … Ramsay was such a horrible character. His smiles while throwing arrows to Rickon were sick and also while Jon was punching him … Glad the character is dead and in such a deserving way …

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    19. Iwan is one of my favourite actors in the show.

      What he did with Ramsay is simply outstanding in my opinion.
      He took a caricature and turned him into a credible villian. Still a pshyco though!

      From the moment we see him I started falling in love with his acting. The way he alternates from sadist who enjoys just beating his victims to cold calculated, when he plays with the victims mind.

      One of my favourite moments where were hi will act nice. That is what it was in the end a ”act” and Ramsay knew it was a act, he never believed he was good but he acted that way perfectly. Fooling Walda and many, many others.
      He enjoyed the killing and torture but knew how to hide it and seem like a normal human being. All of this is thanks to Iwan.

      His relationship with his father is among my favourite. This is the only time Ramsay is genuine. This is when the monster, who tortures, rapes…etc. turns into a little 5 year old, who want only one thing, his fathers aprovel and love.

      This is why he is so hurt, when Roose says he isn’t a Bolton. Because this is the only thing that matters to him.
      That is why he takes MC, to prove himself, to show his father he is worthy of the Bolton banner and name and more important to prove that he is worthy of his fathers admiration.
      All of this is clearly and lovely showed in Iwan’s acting. The eyes when his father says he isn’t a Bolton. The voice when he tells his father MC is his and when Roose finally makes him a Bolton. All superb acting.

      When he finally kills Roose, a fitting end to their relationship, it is again a hallmark of great acting from Iwan.

      This all starts in S5 when we see Ramsay much more ”relaxed”, much more confident, because he has achieved his desires.
      Everything starts falling when he finds Walda is pregnant. Then his world is shaken to the core.

      He finally does the unthinkable and kills Roose. Before he does it he again tells his father how much his approval matters to him. Then, to protect his position and future.
      He stabs his father, the only man he ever loved. And the pain is clear. He cannot look at his father when he dies, he cannot bring himself to look into his eyes, something he never does, he always enjoyed seeing his victims suffer but his father? He cannot.

      He is visibly shaken, he trambles, he says nothing. His hands tramble when he cleans the blood on his knife, which didn’t happen with Osha for example.
      His voice is broken as he tells the Maester his father was killed be their enemies.

      But in the end Ramsay was a pshycopat. Who didn’t truly have feelings for other people, except his father, and that is clear in his relationship with Theon and Sansa.
      He completely breaks Theon, both physically and mentally and tried to do the same with Sansa, thankfully he failed with the later.

      I know I may have talked a bit to much about Ramsay and not Iwan. But to me all this moments are a showcase of Iwan’s amazing talent, that he managed to create a believable character out of someone who could have easly been a caricature.

      In the end, I cheered and was filled with joy at Ramsay’s demise but I was also sad, because this means Iwan will leave the show.

      I thank him for everything he brought to the show, will miss him dearly, not Ramsay though, can we bring Iwan back like we did Dean? No?…….
      I watched couple other of his projects and enjoyed them greatly. Misfits was very good and will eagerly await to see him in more projects in the future!

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    20. Dee Stark:
      I never admitted this but I have always found him hot. Even as Ramsay.

      Why.

      In fairness he is a very good looking chap! That last picture of him above shows how cute he is in real life and that’s ok – you know how to differentiate! 🙂

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    21. First of all, when I saw the lyric at the top, it immediately reminded me of THIS. But enough of that. Let’s focus on Ramsay Snow, the bastard of the Dreadfort… pardon, I mean Ramsay Bolton, former Lord of Winterfell and Warden of the North.

      I can admit that I was utterly disgusted by Ramsay in the books and I was really really worried how would he translate to the screen. His book scenes are worthy of any horror movie. This may sound a bit harsh but I always had a feeling that after Joffrey’s death, GRRM wanted to create the worst villain possible (the type of villains I don’t usually enjoy)

      Well, Ramsay on the screen was also the worst villain at the moment but I can say, that I was positively surprised by him. Yes, he performed terrible acts and he had the most sucess of all villains (save maybe Tywin) but he still seemed like a real person to me – a psychopath, but a person, which I can’t admit for his book counterpart.

      Even more than his villainous scenes I enjoyed the other scenes – the calmer ones such as those prior to Theon’s imprisonment or Sansa/Ramsay scenes. These indicated that Ramsay was a great actor. The scene when Theon makes a confession to him (And Now His Watch Is Ended) is one of my favorite ones and much praise goes to Iwan Rheon for his believable performance as a “supporting protagonist” and then turning into complete psychopath just moments later.

      Behind all this, there was still a tiny bit of human left in Ramsay. Among these scenes was the one, when lord Bolton reveals him that he was legitimized, or the one when he sees Myranda’s death body (although with “feed her to my dogs” he turned back into old Ramsay). After all, he wanted to prove himself to his father and I wonder what would his father say about him during the Battle of the Bastards.

      If I say a few words about his end, it was like my dreams coming true – Sansa was the one to deal the final blow and it was a satisfying ending for his character.

      To conclude, I think Ramsay Bolton was a hell of a character to play and all my praise goes to Iwan Rheon for his outstanding and convincing portrayal and interpretation of this character, which was brought to life from the novels in completely new form.

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    22. Sad that Westeros lost one of their finest military commanders. The bullheaded Starks didn’t deserve to win the battle….Westeros will be a dull place without you, Ramsay, you sweet innocent Bastard child of Bolton.

      But jokes apart, I would rate Iwan’s portrayal of Ramsay Bolton second only to Charles Dance’s interpretation of Tywin Lannister. Ramsay had such a commanding screen presence, and couple that with the sinister Bolton music sent chills down my spines…Brilliant actor who played his part to absolute perfection. You will be sorely missed.
      PS: Hoping Mellisandre brings him back to life

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    23. Iwan did a bang-up job of being our favorite villain. I wanted Ramsay to die a terrible death, but I must say I will miss him. He definitely kept us all on our toes. Great job to a great actor!

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    24. Lord Parramandas,

      Thank you!

      I was afraid it will be too long and people won’t read it! 🙂

      Also completly agree with you that he is much, much better in the show and that is mostly thanks to Iwan.

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    25. Barry did an incredible job as Ramsay and I’ll miss him. Cant wait to see him in something else. Plus I really need to look at that McKellen/Jacobi show mentioned in the Curtain Call.

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    26. He did an amazing job playing a part I kinda believe he was slightly miscast in.
      Hes got loads of talent and screen presence, and really was great to watch.

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    27. Mihnea,

      Wow I was going to say that was one of biggest comments you made but you already said it..
      I agree with everything you have said

      Iwan was just perfection in his role..he was ramsey until the last moment and his facial expressions and crazy eyes sole how psycho he really is ..

      I will say this about iwan…i cant picture anyone other than kit as jon …but i wonder how iwan would have played him..

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    28. dragonbringer,

      His final moments were great.

      He didn’t beg for mercy, he didn’t laugh like a crazy person. He did what Ramsay always did, he tried to play with Sansa’s mind.

      Again the acting was simply amazing and Iwan knocked it.

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    29. Thrilled Ramsay is gone, bummed that Iwan is. He brought the character to life and I hope he gets fun new roles down the road.

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    30. He really did an awesome job with the character. Like him, I hope he can avoid being typecast. He definitely has the talent and range for many different types of rolls. I just hope that views can see past the great job he did in this – which is such a hugely popular show – and he gets many chances at different roles.

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    31. I’m not sure if someone already likened this, but at the end of BotB as Ramsey was tied up in the kennel, it reminded me a bit of Silence of the Lambs. “Hello Clarice”……”Hello Sansa”. Very good, quality villainy.

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    32. You were a fantastic bastard!

      I’m sure you have a bright future ahead of you!

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    33. Iwan is an incredible actor and so versatile. Just take a look at him in Spring awakening. What a voice and what presence. https://youtu.be/KelpTW-mzBo

      It may take a little while to shake off Ramsay but he’s too good an actor not to create other memorable roles.

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    34. Very, very stupid question. OT and again really stupid.

      I found a RollingStone article about Ramsay but can’t open the entire article……… If anyone would tell me how I would appreciate it. I would also appreciate if you didn’t laugh at my stupidity…….. but who am I kidding, even I laughed at my stupidity..

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    35. He’s a great actor, it takes a certain type of guy play an evil character. He’s also responsible for some pretty funny moments. I love the look on his face when Miranda get’s jealous.

      “You can see that your presence has become a bit of a problem.” LOL

      https://youtu.be/eP5GU6dNZyc

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    36. Kamali:
      People say Ramsay was a one-note villain but man if he didn’t have one of my favorite scenes of the series when Roose named him an official Bolton.

      ^^ Such a wonderful scene.

      Yeah, Ramsay was largely one-note villain but that’s the script and that’s the character from the books as well. Rheon acted what he was given amazingly, especially the scenes with Ramsay and Roose were great because they put a bit of humanity in the character of Ramsay. Not the biggest fan of such a character in a largely non-blackandwhite story as this, but now when I think of Ramsay I think of Rheon.

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    37. Excellent work – it was always difficult to remember that you were just acting when I wanted to reach through the screen and rip that smirk off your face.

      Best of luck in future roles!

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    38. Oh, I totally forgot to mention my absolute favorite GoT quote that came from Ramsay’s mouth and which on top of that doesn’t even exist in the books. I usually use it against the comments like “Jon & Daenerys will marry, rule the Seven Kingdoms together and Tyrion will be their Hand

      If you think this has a happy ending, you haven’t been paying attention!

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    39. Jack Bauer 24:
      I think Ramsay will end up being the biggest death of this season.

      “Hold the door” – From my perspective, no one can surpass that death this season.

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    40. Thank you Iwan for the amazing portrayal of Ramsay !

      You’ll be remembered ! But dont worry, not as a typecast psycho but as a tremendously talented actor !

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    41. No one does crazy-dreadful-yet vulnerable quite like Iwan—-thank you for bringing Ramsay to life! Good luck with everything–we’ll be watching!

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    42. One of last *true* villains of the show is gone. I know we all wanted Joffrey to die and many wanted Tywin to die but when they did, it left a bit of a villain vacuum. Ramsay filled it quite nicely but with him gone, we’ve only really got Walder Frey and some other more gray area villains and something tells me Walder’s not long for this world. 😀

      Cheers to Iwan for being a villain we loved to hate.

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    43. Iwan, you beautiful man. Simon, Ash, Ramsay, love them all. Amazing voice as well, especially singing in his native Welsh. ? Ramsay and Roose will be sorely missed. In my top 5 actors from GoT, and if you love British programming as I do, you’ve already seen how versatile he is. Thanks, Iwan!

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    44. I´ll miss him.

      He rose from a bastard to the warden of the North.
      He played a loving husbad to his lady, a good lord to his smallfolk, collector of taxes and a brilliant military mind.

      He died a tragic death at the hand of his doublecrossing evil wife and her simple minded always pouting bastard-brother.

      Sir Rheon i salute you!

      #poinsonedbyhisenemies

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    45. It’s kind of strange that a guy who wants to avoid being stereotyped as a psycho villain type would choose HITLER as one of his first post-Ramsay roles (even in a comedy, it’s still freaking Hitler!), but, hey…

      I feel that Iwan’s work is going to be overlooked for the way that Ramsay’s character was written throughout the show, but his acting in this part was damn-near flawless. I wish him luck in anything he looks to do down the line.

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    46. Though I’m thrilled Ramsay is gone for good, I’ll miss Iwan more than I should. I’ve very much imagined him in other roles – too much, some might say. I’d love to see him in a love interest role or a comedy, especially after the Comic Relief bit last year. Perhaps a rom com.

      Ramsay did get a near-death by dragon, finished by a fish.

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    47. Dee Stark:
      I never admitted this but I have always found him hot. Even as Ramsay.

      Why.

      “Why not?” is the better question. Iwan is sexier than Sexy Jesus. Those eyes. Those dimples. That ass.

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    48. Well they managed to create a character even more hated than Joffrey – some achievement!

      I’m sure it can’t be easy to try and put yourself into the mind of a character as loathsome and sadistic as Ramsay, who is responsible for some pretty horrifying and controversial scenes but he did a great and memorable job.

      And with that wicked smile he has given us one of the most hilariously useful animated GIFs of all time – so there is that 😀 https://media.giphy.com/media/MJ0sxcBzT3mTu/giphy.gif

      Diolch yn fawr Iwan 🙂

      And here he is, speaking Welsh (lapsing into English now and again!) and talking briefly about GoT, just showing what a pleasant person he really is, you could never guess he could play Ramsay looking at this!

      and a much younger Iwan!

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    49. Kamali,

      Any time someone wonders about his acting skills, I think about this scene. It is beyond perfect.

      Thank you Iwan for making Ramsey the despicable horrible excuse for a human being that he was, and at the same time showing such joy, which made him even more chillingly evil. I do know you have some acting chops away from GOT – I have seen you on Vicious and love your character (and working with Jacobi and McClellan must be a blast and a half) and Im looking forward to seeing much more of you – good luck to you in your career!

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    50. Red Nightmare,

      I think its the other way around – when we think of Ramsey we will think of Iwan. The actor will always be many people. But I am sure everytime read the book now, I’ll hear his voice.

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    51. I first heard of Iwan back on WinterIsComing in an article speculating who would be chosen to play the Bastard of the Dreadfort. From the moment I saw a small thumbnail sized photo of him, I thought he was the perfect choice. Out of curiosity, I then went and watched all of Misfits (now one of my favorite shows), and became a huge fan of his acting. When it was announced he had been cast as “Boy” in S3, I was beyond excited. Who else could he be playing?

      Iwan crushed it as Ramsay. The character gets a lot of flack as being “one-dimensional” and “boring”, but I’ve always disagreed, largely due to how vibrant and wicked a performance Iwan gave in every single scene he had. He turned what could have been a cartoonish villain into someone mesmerizingly evil, always entertaining to watch. His ability to turn a smirk into a chilling stare in the blink of an eye was incredible.

      It’s fitting that Iwan exited the show on a high note. I truly believe his performance in BOTB was his finest as Ramsay. After that episode, I can’t imagine anyone else nailing a “smug villain” as well as he did here. The parley scene was excellent. The little nonchalant expressions of amusement he kept making while shooting at Rickon. His final conversation with Sansa. Just great, great work.

      With Ramsay gone, and the threat of the White Walkers looming, I worry that the show will have a hard time in making them as magnetic and interesting. The Bastard of Bolton will be a hard villain to top, and that’s a testament to his performance.

      Thank you for bringing this character to life, Iwan Rheon! I can’t wait to see what you do next.

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    52. Hey does Paul Rattray get a curtain call?

      I mean does ANYONE know if Harald Karstark is alive or dead?
      The leaks suggested he is killed by Jon, i tought it was him on the ground with Jon when he gets trampled by his own men.

      I tried rewatching but you cant make out the face.

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    53. A fantastic actor. Will be sad not to see him on the show anymore, even though Ramsay really needed to be taken down. I loved him in Misfits as well.

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    54. Mihnea,

      See if there is an ad floating around the page with an x – Magazines have been really creative about hiding those. Then you can click it off hopefully! If not I’ll see if I can get another link

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    55. Mihnea,

      I fear for his ability to separate from the character. He has a very unique look about him, an a-typical look that might make it harder for him to shed the character.

      That said, people are afraid of the villain loss. We still have Cersei, the NK/WW, Freys (at least for now), High Sparrow (at least for now), and don’t forget about Euron – he seems pretty nutzo – he could take the Joffrey/Tywin/Ramsay banner and carry it.

      I also think we are going to see one, if not two, existing “good” characters transition into more antagonist roles, if not full on bad guys.

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    56. Hoyti Von Totiy,

      No one knows if he’s dead, he’s not even marked as dead in the HBO Viewer’s Guide, and he only had like one speaking scene, so no, he wouldn’t receive a curtain call.

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    57. Iwan. What a great actor you are to have pulled off one of the best villains ever, not just for Game of Thrones. While it was very satisfying to have the character end like he did, I will miss having you on my television weekly.

      All the best to you on future endeavors. It may take a bit of time to escape the “evil Elijah Wood” persona, but you will do it, you have a long and great career in front of you. *claps*

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    58. Ramsey was a bastard in all respects – Not only through birth, but in his actions!

      Iwan Rheon played Ramsey’s part perfectly and is a brilliant actor. I wish him all the best for the future. I’ll certainly miss him, but shouted for glee at the TV when Sansa set his own hounds on him. ‘Poetic Justice’ as they say and a perfect ending for someone who did the same to so many in previous episodes 🙂

      RIP Ramsey Bolton (nee Snow)

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    59. I have loved Iwan since Misfits and when I found out he was the one that would be playing Ramsay, it made me a bit sad because I didn’t want to hate him. He seems like the biggest sweetheart ever, which goes to show how talented he is, because Ramsay Bolton is like, a complete 180 from who he really is. He portrayed him so magnificently. I haven’t seen ANY character on this show, (even Joff) get as much hate as Ramsay. It had to be tough going into work and being like, “okay, today I have to pretend to chop off Alfie’s dick”, or “now I have to insinuate that I’m raping Sophie”. Getting into THAT dark of a mindset; THAT dark of a character, had to be hard. That being said, in a morbid kind of way, he made Ramsay interesting to watch. I don’t know about you, but I was always wondering what he was going to do during his scenes. That kind of “edge of your seat” villain aspect is something that I’ll miss. We no longer have a huge, main villain anymore (granted, I guess you could say the WW’s if you wanted to).

      It makes me sad that so many people can’t differentiate between him and Ramsay. I hope that doesn’t hinder him from continuing to do what he loves. He’s a fantastic actor and wouldn’t mind if he got nominated for an Emmy for BotB. I suppose he’s not 100% done with playing Ramsay however, since I suspect Telltale will ask him to come back for S2 of Game of Thrones, which, by the way, I hope they can start working on it very soon. I’m getting antsy about it.

      Great job, Iwan! You will be missed greatly not only by the GoT family, but the millions of fans around the world. We love you! <3

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    60. I can’t recall hating a fictional character as much as I hated Ramsay. And that’s thanks to Iwan. He was brilliant. I’m sure that many more great roles will come his way and it will be well-deserved.

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    61. Old Nan’s Pie:

      PS: Hoping Mellisandre brings him back to life

      Haaa… I think she’ll have a job! That is unless she has the power to resurrect life from piles of dog shit – LOL 😀

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    62. Bye-bye, Iwan. You did a great job; and, it will be remembered!

      ..she affirmed that she has survived his abuse while he will be lost to history, she watched as his own hounds ate him alive.

      There’s that “survived” word again – in reference to Sansa. The blogger forgot to include Ramsey’s own words to Sansa: “I’m inside you now.” Those words are far truer than Sansa’s words to him. He’s infected her with rage and violence, and she doesn’t have the basic good character to modulate this new rage.

      Sansa’s words – that the Boltons will be lost to history – are not entirely true; they did sound impressive, though, sort of like the word survivor! The historians WILL mention the Boltons and how they slaughtered the Starks and took Winterfell. If Catelyn and Robb are to be remembered, then the Boltons will be remembered as well; unless, Sansa intends to re-write all the history books herself.

      And…if Ramsey is “inside” Sansa now – I believe he is – then he is the one who has survived, and it is Sansa who has died.

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    63. Over the course of his four seasons, Iwan Rheon established himself as one of the most compelling and underrated actors on Game of Thrones. As monstrous as Ramsay could be (though still somehow mercifully toned down from his literary counterpart), Iwan made him not only bearable to watch, but fascinating. I could never take my eyes off him when he was onscreen.

      There are so many scenes of Iwan’s that I could celebrate. My favorite remains the moment when he is legitimized by his father as his reward for taking Moat Cailin, and Ramsay, overcome, kneels and swears to be worthy of his father (I love it even more in the light of the knowledge that Ramsay will eventually murder Roose when he threatens to revoke that legitimacy). Iwan’s performance in that scene is pitch-perfect – he got me to empathize with a character than I knew had committed heinous acts, and would go on to commit many more. I may not have felt sympathy for the no-longer Bastard of Bolton, but I understood the character better than I ever had before, in either the books or the show.

      It was an important moment, because that understanding was essential. No matter how evil or brutal Ramsay became, Iwan’s performance kept me anchored in his character – his motivations, his calculations, and his insecurities. The way that Iwan Rheon played Ramsay’s brief, fleeting moments of uncertainty were so critical to ensuring that I never lost sight of his human nature. To be clear, Ramsay represented the absolute worst of humanity, and at times could seem to be more beast than man – “a mad dog”, as Roose once said, who knew the depths of his own savagery and reveled in it. But he was human still, and thanks to Rheon’s steady hand, Ramsay never, ever felt cartoonish to me – which only made him all the more terrifying.

      I also love the scene in “The Gift” when Ramsay summons Sansa to the courtyard (Sophie Turner is a huge part of why I love it, but I’ll focus on Iwan here). I’m struck by how his scene is bracketed by a pair of smiles, which Rheon deploys brilliantly. The first one, which Ramsay puts on when Sansa is brought to him, seems practiced and disingenuous. As famous as Rheon’s maniac grins are, I find this look to be the most chilling – the thinnest veneer of warmth is disguising the cold void that lies beneath. He’s playing at being the doting, affectionate husband here, even if he’s the furthest thing from it. However, that smile fades after Sansa manages to get under his skin with the barb about his bastard origins and the tenuous nature of his inheritance. This role doesn’t suit him. After several episodes of unchecked horror (including his most infamous act) he is, for the first time in several episodes, off his game.

      It doesn’t last long, of course – Ramsay quickly reasserts control. After he shows Sansa the flayed corpse of the washerwoman and sends her back to her room, he stands alone in the Winterfell courtyard and surveys his handiwork. He makes for a terrifying image as Iwan allows Ramsay to settle back into his natural state, standing there as the pure white snow settles down onto his dark cloak and hair. This smile is entirely genuine, relaxed, and cruelly satisfied. He’s back in his element now. The monster need not hide his true face any longer.

      There are so many more scenes I’d like go through, including all of his work with his brilliant co-star and good friend Alfie Allen, and all of his scenes with Michael McElhatton. There’s also his magnificent final episode, where he finally meets his stark mirror image Jon Snow (the character Rheon auditioned for, and might have played in a different world). And of course, there’s his death scene, where Ramsay finally breaks and shows fear. Perhaps I’ll revisit this post later in the week to talk about a few more (to be honest, I wasn’t expecting this Curtain Call until Friday – I’m a bit unprepared).

      It was Ramsay’s time to die, but Rheon’s performance was fantastic. Now that the Bastard of Bolton is gone, it’s so gratifying to see so many people expressing their appreciation for the thoughtful and sensitive actor who portrayed him, a man who is about as far from his character as it’s possible to get. I don’t imagine that Ramsay sang many ballads in his day, but the range of Iwan’s talents is deep and diverse.

      People joke about fears that actors who play such iconic villains will wind up being typecast as that character forever, but I have no fear of that with Iwan Rheon. He’s too talented, too intelligent, and too nuanced of an artist to allow himself to be eternally trapped by the shadow of Ramsay Bolton. It may be his signature performance, but now that he has closed this particular chapter of his career, the possibilities are endless for him. I wish him all the best as he pursues those possibilities, and I thank him for everything he gave to Game of Thrones. He will be missed.

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    64. Though Iwan was fabulous as the evil villain Ramsay, I know his talent will carry him through to numerous roles in the future. Expecting great things – thank you Iwan!

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    65. To the blogger:

      By the way, how can you write a curtain call to an Actor – pouring out praises to his acting – yet fail to include his final words, while including the final words of his killer?

      Isn’t that a little odd? In fact, Ramsey’s actions in that final scene are written in the passive voice, while his killer’s action is written in the active voice.

      Do you have a bias? Although, all this seems to support my claim that it is Sansa who has made a curtain call and needs to be revived, so to speak.;)

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    66. Hoyti Von Totiy:
      Heydoes Paul Rattray get a curtain call?

      I mean does ANYONE know if Harald Karstark is alive or dead?
      The leaks suggested he is killed by Jon, i tought it was him on the ground with Jon when he gets trampled by his own men.

      I tried rewatching but you cant make out the face.

      I thought that too! Short hair, no beard. Tried to hit pause and I really think that could have been him. It looked like he jumped on Jon just before they were trampled, and it was same time Umber and Tormund went at it.

      Goodbye Iwan and thank you for being such an amazing villain with your exceptional acting skills. Look forward to seeing you in future projects!

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    67. Evengen Sand,

      You beat me to it. I’ve been likening his whole performance to Sir Anthony Hopkins’ Hannibal, save the eating people thing. Perfect delivery of a psycho/sociopath not even bothering to conceal his …………. True self?

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    68. “I want to die eaten by Dragons”… Now, Iwan is not only a very talented actor and musician, but obviously also a proud Welshman. If you can’t be the Dragonlord, then at least you can wish to be eaten by them.

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    69. That last photo… I’m in love!

      I’m gonna miss Iwan a lot, but I’m still glad we got rid of Ramsay.

      Btw, has someone seen him in “Under Milk Wood”? I’d love to see that.

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    70. I’ll add my (virtual) voice to the chorus praising Iwan Rheon. He certainly was convincing as a totally nasty piece of work.

      Will Art Parkinson get a curtain call – I know he wasn’t in this season much and in earlier seasons until the scene where he and Bran part company he wasn’t given a great deal to say (possibly because of British laws about how many hours child actors can work), but in the goodbye scene with Bran in season 3 he struck me as having acting chops.

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    71. I won’t miss Ramsey, he was evil bastard and got what he deserved.
      Many thanks to Iwan for portraying this character so well that it made him the most hated villain in my view. I wish him all the best in his future endeavors.
      And thanks again to GoT to introducing me to a talented actor I had no clue existed.

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    72. Did we loath Ramsay ? Or did we love to loath Ramsay ? That is the question I keep asking myself.
      Iwan deserves so much recognition for his role. His facial expressions alone deserve all the awards !
      Iwan made Joffrey look like a puppy next to Ramsay. He portrayed the absolute GOT villain with a maestria we don’t often get to see. Sometimes, he also managed to bring some nuance to his character, especially during his scenes with Roose.

      His death couldn’t have been more satisfying, ironic and yet logic.

      I surely WILL miss Iwan Rheon’s portrayal of Ramsay ! The show will not be quite the same without him.

      Thank you, Iwan, for your wonderful and unforgettable performance !!!!

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    73. All kinds of love for Iwan! Thank you for brilliantly portraying such despicable character! You’ll be missed in a really weird and messed-up way.

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    74. Ginevra: “Why not?” is the better question.Iwan is sexier than Sexy Jesus.Those eyes.Those dimples.That ass.

      Ginevra: “Why not?” is the better question.Iwan is sexier than Sexy Jesus.Those eyes.Those dimples.That ass.

      Goodness!! I thought I was the only one!! I find him extremely good looking although I must admit that he really did scare me especially during the Sansa wedding night scene! His voice modulation, his commanding presence slowly turning more horrific. Its a testimant to his brilliance as an actor! But damn, it was always distracting how hot he was!! great body, clean cut! Those eyes!!!!!

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    75. It is sad! I’m a fan of both Game of Thrones and Vicious, and Iwan’s appearances in both shows ended the same day! Great actor, he will be missed. I’m looking forward to what’s next for him!

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    76. Ser Not Appearing in this Series,

      So neat to hear him speaking Welsh. Thanks for sharing that. Cool language, and one I hope to learn some day.

      Although I anticipate being able to watch a substantially greater portion of each episode now that I won’t have to spend all the Ramsay scenes in another room with my eyes closed and my hands over my ears, and although I’m glad that Ramsay is gone, Iwan did a great job with the role. I don’t think I’ve ever so viscerally loathed a TV character before. Fantastic work, and best of luck.

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    77. Ser Jay of the Trident (Sword of the Afternoon):
      He’s a great actor, it takes a certain type of guy play an evil character. He’s also responsible for some pretty funny moments. I love the look on his face when Miranda get’s jealous.

      “You can see that your presence has become a bit of a problem.” LOL

      https://youtu.be/eP5GU6dNZyc

      Now we know why they had him feed Myranda to the dogs. Dramatic irony!

      Anyway, as others have already said, Ramsay could’ve easily been cartoonish is the hands of a lesser actor. With Iwan’s performance you could see that he was insecure about being a bastard and desperate for his father’s approval. I think you have to be decent person to play a villain effectively and as glad as I was see Ramsay die the painful death he so richly deserved, I will miss Iwan. I was one of those people who wanted Cillian Murphy to be cast in the role but we got someone just as good in the end. And agreeing with some of the other commenters that he’s very cute!

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    78. All credit to Iwan for playing a vile, nasty piece of work in such a way that will haunt me for a long time.

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    79. I will most certainly not miss Ramsay. It was time for him to go, and he got a satisfyingly painful death.

      Iwan though, I will miss. He did a fabulous job of making Ramsay monstrous, while also keeping him human and not a caricature (like the book version).

      Hopefully, he can at least return in future installments of the Telltale game series.

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    80. Having never heard of Iwan Rheon before he was cast, I have to admit, I was skeptical. After viewing his first episode, I was sold. Tremendous acting, so impressive. Fare thee well, Mr. Rheon, and best wishes for your bright future.

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    81. Fantastic fantastic stuff

      Not quite the book character

      But in a sense this was actually quite good, eg entering the Daddy issues with Roose actually made Ramsay more dynamic

      I particularly liked how he was so convincingly play “the boy” who seemed quite genuine towards Theon when helping him escape and later on “I won’t hurt her” to Littlefinger

      And of course he perfectly sold us on the sadistic maniac

      One of those peripheral characters around the main characters that are done so well
      they really enrich and add depth to the story
      More later

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    82. I would rather see Mary Sue Stormborn, Powerpuff Girls, Briene of Fart “The Oathbreaker” to go down, then Iwan.

      Also Tyrion is beyond boring, his character should have sunk with the ship to Volantis, or he

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    83. Great portrayal Iwan! Especially in Battle of Bastards. I know many saw Ramsay as over the top cartoonish character but Iwan being directed that Ramsay is actually a joyful person despite of everything else and his having a mindset that normal humans can’t attempt to understand made him come off as very believable

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    84. Mihnea,

      He was an awesome Ramsey. I’ll have to admit I was cheering when the hounds were loosed on Sir Bolton. One of my favorite characters. Sadly all but two of my favorites have been dispatched.

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    85. Thank you, Petra, for this wonderful presentation of the versatile and nuanced actor Iwan Rheon is. I think you captured Iwan’s acting choise by using “maniacal joy” – this was what made me admire his portrayal of Ramsay.
      I’m very glad I had the opportunity to watch Misfits and Vicious and I don’t associate Iwan with Ramsay any longer. For me, a sweet guy like Iwan must be, first of all, a sweet character like Simon.
      Dee, Ginevra, Pidgeon and the other ladies (apologies for forgetting to mention others, I have just skimmed through the comments) who find Iwan hot: I’m not ashamed to join you.

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    86. Iwan Rheon played the perfect GOT-villain. Ramsay was dynamic, convincing and often downright scary. I wish Iwan the best of luck in his future endeavours.

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    87. Shy Lady Dragon,

      It’s funny Shy Lady cause for all the swooning I do over Jon Snow in my waking hours the only dream I’ve had is where he was a friend that got me hooked up with a new job after being fired haha. But the other night I dreamed something naughty with Ramsay (I should say Iwan because no way was it the character of Ramsay I refuse to believe that 🙂

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    88. ygritte,

      Good to talk to you again! The comments on this thread are the first I read in a week or so, I only managed to read one or two of the articles posted (it was Sue’s recap and another one, I think). I’m very sorry and a little embarrassed I didn’t read what you had written about Jon. But after watching episode 9 I imagined your relief for his survival and his being the hero of the battle.
      I’m sure you dreamt about Iwan, not Ramsay 😉

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    89. It’ll be weird having all the human villains from past seasons dead. No Tywin, no Joffrey, no Roose, no Ramsay. Hopefully Walder Frey bites the dust on Sunday. That only leaves Cersei, but she’s been so humanized at this point, I don’t even hate her any more, and the High Sparrow has turned into such a sanctimonious jackass that he hardly seems any better. His personal character is still above Cersei, but he’s heading down the road of the Taliban, thinking he can improve upon rule of the corrupt with a maniacal theocracy that will only end up being worse for everyone involved.

      I don’t think I see Euron taking that role. It’s time for the dead to become the principle antagonists. I’ll miss Iwan Rheon, but there is no room for human villains in the endgame.

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    90. Shy Lady Dragon,

      No need to be embarrassed! Can’t remember what was said but I wasn’t even worried because I knew the spoilers haha but yeah it’s hard to keep up with everything, there’s quite a few big threads been going lately. How are you? Still very busy work schedule? I usually space them out but I took all my vacation time during the first 6 months this year and now I regret it lol.

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    91. Cheers, Iwan. You aced this role, all the way from being “The Boy” starting in Dark Wings, Dark Words up through Ramsay Bolton’s fitting end. Good luck in everything you do, whether it be in music or in acting. Hurrah!

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    92. I sat in astonished wonder as I watched Rheon’s face delicately morph through the spectrum of caution, worry, hope, and then smug assurance, as he waited for Jon Snow to decide whether to charge the Bolton lines. It was exquisite acting. He was a brilliant addition to an already brilliant cast. I’m very much looking forward to following his career in the years to come. He’s a huge, huge talent.

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    93. Well done Iwan, enjoy a long career. Having owned the role of such a notable villain watched by so many viewers can only assure future success.

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    94. When I first heard Iwan was going to play Ramsay I squealed and then felt slightly sick to my stomach. How can I fan girl Ramsay? Well… I did. And I still am. And it’s gross but it still feels so right. Great job, Iwan! May Ramsay Bolton (Snow, never Snow) die in the worst Westerosi hell there is.

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    95. ygritte,

      Hey, that sounds like an interesting dream!!! I never have GoT dreams and I dreamt Brienne drowned last night. I like your dream better! lol

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    96. He was obviously great at making the character utterly obnoxious and reviled.

      However, I much preferred his scenes with Michael McElhatton where he was a bit more serious and reserved and his scenes in Season 3 where he was more sinister and mysterious, rather than the more pantomime villainy when engaging with Reek and Sansa.

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    97. The curtain falls on one of the best performances in the show.

      The thing a lot of people forget about playing heroes vs. villains, is that everybody wants to think of themselves as a hero, but nobody wants to think of themselves as the villain- especially the really, really, really bad ones.

      Iwan Rheon actually auditioned for the part of Jon Snow. Well, as we all know, he didn’t get it. In the end, he and Kit Harrington got the roles they were perfectly suited for; Kit Harrington brooded and struggled his way into our hearts as Jon Snow, while Iwan Rheon brutalized us with one of the greatest screen villains of all time. In that, they both showed us just how talented they really are.

      I think the best quote from any GoT interview came from Iwan, when someone asked him what impact playing Ramsay had on his life, and he replied by saying something to the effect of “Well, it’s been great for my career, not so much for my love life, no…Used to be, I could go down the pub and go up to a woman and offer to buy them a drink, and, either I got a yes or a no. Now, I walk into a pub, and the women all run away in terror, so, it HAS had it’s downside.”.

      Now that he’s played one of the best villains I’ve ever seen, I’d like to see him play a hero. Like I said, it’s hard to play the villain, because none of us want to think of ourselves that way, but Iwan took the role and ran with it, and did a great job of it: He terrorized us, as an audience. He made us hate him. He made us want his character die in the most ugly way possible. In short, he played a villain brilliantly.

      Bravo, Iwan. I’m really looking forward to your future works, and hopefully, we’ll get to see you play a hero. If you could be this good at the hard role, I can only imagine how well you’ll do with the easier one.

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    98. ygritte,

      Theoretically I can take my vacation, but I I have so much work that it wouldn’t do me any good. I think I’ll take some in August (friends invited me to join them for a trip in Greece, where I have never been) and then prepare for another very hectic period of time until winter.

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    99. Ghosts Lunch: Am hoping Ian Whyte will get one

      Doesn’t he still play one of the White Walkers? Anyway, thank you, Iwan. I look forward to you playing nice(r) guys in the future.

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    100. Great actor, great performance! If bringing to life such a despicable character as Ramsay is accomplished with such talent as Iwan Rheon displayed, there is nothing much else that I can add in terms of praise that would make any differences or do any justice! His performance speaks for itself!

      Thank you for your work on this show!

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    101. I take my baseball cap off to you, Mr. Iwan Rheon. I’d become a fan of yours years ago when you tugged at my heartstrings as Simon (SuperSimon as you are known in my household) in Misfits. I was worried that you’d be just too darn sweet to take on the horror that is Ramsay, but whoa! Was I wrong. Though I couldn’t hate you with quite the passion or intensity as most of my GOT friends, you did make me frown and wag my finger at you constantly. Hmmph! It wasn’t until some of my friends saw you on Misfits and Viscious that they finally understood why I just never spit at the tv when your Ramsay appeared on screen.

      But, since Ramsay did kill off my favourite Stark (Rickon), and then my favourite wildling (Wun Weg Wun Dar Wun), I have to admit I thoroughly enjoyed the last moments of Ramsay with his ‘girls’ with a few giggles and snorts to boot.

      Toodles for now, Mr. Rheon. All the best! 🙂

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    102. Definitely gonna miss the actor. Iwan was such a wonderful addition not just in how he played Ramsay, but his public appearances and even his social media presence added so much to the fan experience. The guy has been a flat-out fun part of the GOT family. I’m sad to see him go even though his character deserved it.

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    103. It isn’t easy to play such a despicable character, but Iwan pulled it off magnificently. Good Luck to him in the future.

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    104. R.I.P., show!Ramsay. My favorite bastard.

      My thanks go to Iwan Rheon bringing him to life perfectly. Great job, mate! (And I’ll drop you a letter soon.)

      I already miss your facial expressions. You did a wonderful performance.

      And you are a great musician – “Dinard” was my album of the year last year and I guess in a way it still is.

      Keep up the very nice and brilliant work!

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