Curtain Call: Stephen Dillane

Stannis

Stannis remains stubborn.

Has an episode description ever captured the entirety of a character as perfectly as it did in the synopsis for episode 7 of Game of Thrones season 5? The simple statement, typically vague to elude spoiler hunters, wound up encapsulating Stannis Baratheon hilariously well as fans noted. There is no one in the Game of Thrones or Ice and Fire world more stubborn than he is, and it’s that fierce hold to his resolutions that ultimately led to the death of Stannis in the season finale.

With the death of Stannis, we also lose one of the best actors on Game of Thrones, Stephen Dillane.

Stannis BlackwaterWe didn’t necessarily know what to expect when Dillane’s casting was announced four years ago. He wasn’t at the top of anyone’s list for the role. We’re an opinionated fandom and Stannis has a strong following. Stannis himself isn’t the most glamorous of characters, the most brittle and introverted of the Baratheon brothers. That was true in the novels and it carried over to the show, where he stood in the shadow of his charismatic brothers that we met in the first season, boisterous Robert and charming Renly.

Stephen Dillane stepped into the role of Stannis in the second season premiere, burning the gods on the beaches of Dragonstone and drawing Lightbringer from the flames. (For a stern character, he certainly made a splashy debut.) From that point on, Stannis slowly marched his way into our hearts with his odd displays of humor and touches of humanity that offset his toughness. He and Liam Cunningham played off each other in the episodes leading up to the Blackwater battle, and brought out the best in each other- something that continued until their final scenes together this year. Every actor did better with Dillane- note how great Kit Harington did with him in the Wall scenes.

Dillane took George R.R. Martin’s character and brought him authentically to life, with the added layers that a gifted actor can accomplish with only a look, a gesture or the gritting of his teeth. He’s a tightly controlled actor, one not given to an excess of flourishes and that’s just what this character needed.

Stannis and Shireen S2By the end of the second season, Stephen Dillane had completely overtaken the visual of Stannis I had in my mind from the books, and for a long-time ASOIAF fan, that’s saying a lot.

The next couple seasons gave Dillane the opportunity to bring out more layers of Stannis, as his family was properly introduced with the casting of Tara Fitzgerald as Selyse and Kerry Ingram as Shireen. The man who could command armies was at a loss sometimes when it came to dealing with his family. Season 3 established the tradition of Dillane conveying Stannis’s softer side with his young daughter.

Stannis at the sacrificeOh, Shireen. Shireen who brought out his best side and then in a scene many never want to see again, was subject to the worst action Stannis ever commits. (Not that the Renly thing was a shining moment either.) Stannis looks absolutely destroyed about Shireen’s sacrifice but he still does it, because he never turns away from a decision once it’s been made, once he’s marching forward. Whether it was the right decision or not, people will still debate, but that’s not my point in mentioning it. It’s the actor I want to praise, because Stephen Dillane (along with Tara Fitzgerald, Kerry Ingram and the other actors onscreen) helped create a scene that haunted people and made them feel and rage and weep. He did what he was supposed to do; the actor did his duty and far beyond it.

When death came for Stannis, the end was simple and elegant in its execution. He acknowledged the blood magic that did his brother in (perhaps because it helped kill his daughter too) and accepted his fate without tears. Stannis Baratheon fought until he couldn’t fight anymore and then accepted his death. But without begging or sharing of his emotions, because really, this is Stannis. Remember? He remains stubborn.

Stannis at the end

As for Stephen Dillane, he’ll continue on. He’s already working on series 2 of The Tunnel. Otherwise known as the TV show he’ll actually do press for. Dillane’s gift for dodging GoT red carpets, press junkets, and any public event he can is admirable, and another aspect of him I’ll miss. I’m not saying he’s actually Stannis because he does smile and laugh…but he’s a little bit Stannis. Just a little bit. Enough to make him the ideal man for the job.

And you were that, Stephen Dillane. Duty done and then some.

Stephen Dillane

163 responses

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    1. In before the arguments start!

      For what it’s worth, I think he’s dead but won’t 100% it until next season.
      One of the best performers in the show. Disappointed we won’t have him next season just as he was reaching his peak as an interesting character.

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    2. Excellent curtain call, Sue! For me this says it all:

      Every actor did better with Dillane- note how great Kit Harington did with him in the Wall scenes.

      Dillane took George R.R. Martin’s character and brought him authentically to life, with the added layers that a gifted actor can accomplish with only a look, a gesture or the gritting of his teeth

      For Stephen of House Dillane, First Stubborn on the Show, The Gritter of Teeth, The Great Deliverer of Lines, The Grim Stealer of Scenes, The Conveyer of Stannis Baratheon. We will miss you.

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    3. Yhamm,

      Yes. In several interviews and on HBO websites. He is dead. And it’s not like anyone capable of resurrection is hanging around his death site.

      And Curtain Calls are for positive appreciation of an actor, not for internet wankery and arguing.

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    4. Before the comments get derailed with speculation on Stannis’ death:

      He’s dead. The “Beautiful Death” poster for the finale displayed his death, and the official Viewer’s Guide explicitly says he’s dead. Not to mention various interviews confirm he’s dead.

      Now that that’s all out of the way, let’s talk about how GoT lost one of its best actors last week. The show won’t be the same without him.

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    5. Yeah, Sue, excellent curtain call. I did ask Geoffery just yesterday if the Stephen Dillane-call was already underway, didn´t imagine seeing it on WOTW just one day after that . Cheers to you both!

      Tormund’s Woman,
      Completely subscribed. Besides, I like to picture him giving a little present to Kerry Ingram and having one or two beers with Gethin Anthony and Liam Cunningham, that would be great.

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    6. Thanks for the post! Although I am not pleased with the way Shireen died and feel like it did a disservice to his character, Stannis remains one of the best characters in ASoIaF. Stephen Dillane only made me love him more. I want to believe that he is still alive, but if he is dead, he went out the way he should – standing by what he did and doing it honestly.

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    7. Superb performance from one of the great actors around. Check out Welcome To Sarajevo and John Adams as he’s brilliant in those as well.

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    8. Stephen Dillane will be really missed on the show, he’s such a great actor!
      All the Baratheons are gone now… except for Gendry who’s a Rivers though.
      #stillRowing

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    9. Beautiful curtain call. I remember not being pleased with Dillane back in S2, because he “didn’t look at all” like the Stannis I imagined in my head.
      But he totally won me over with his acting. Now I think there couldn’t be a better Stannis Baratheon. I’m going to miss both the character and the actor.

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    10. Definitely one of the best actors on the show – he was perfect as Stannis. With losing Charles Dance last year and now Stephen Dillane this year I’m afraid Thrones is losing some of its most talented performers!

      I enjoyed the first series of the Tunnel and will look forward to series 2.

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    11. R.I.P Stannis The Mannis! You will be sorely missed. I look forward to continue your adventure in TWoW! Anyway, Stephan Dilane did an amazing job, no doubt.

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    12. Nice job posting this on Father’s Day in the U.S.

      Dillane made me like Stannis more than I ever thought I would. I’ll miss his presence in Season 6.

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    13. Stupid stubborn Stannis. Not easy to like, almost impossible to love, but I still found myself secretly rooting for him, because of those rare glimpses of humanity and flashes of dry humour beyond that cold and brutal logic.

      Here´s to Mr. Dillane, one of the finest. I´ll miss him, but there´s always The Tunnel 2 to look forward too.

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    14. Queen of the Keys:
      Stephen Dillane will be really missed on the show, he’s such a great actor!
      All the Baratheons are gone now… except for Gendry who’s a Rivers though.
      #stillRowing

      Gendry is not a Rivers or a Waters or anything.. he’s without surname. To get one of the bastard last names, you have to be officially recognized as a bastard, like Jon Snow was, or Edric Storm from the books.

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    15. Big, big thanks to Stephen Dillane for bringing Stannis to life, not so easy with a main character who is nonetheless not a POV in the books. One of the best actors on the show and easy to underestimate his worth when so much that Stannis says or does is really quietly understated.

      I’ve never been on Team Stannis, but he definitely came across for me as the man of the moment for Westeros although someone to respect as a battle commander rather than admire.

      “They say Stannis never smiles. I’ll give him a red smile from ear to ear.”
      ―Joffrey Baratheon

      Haha, he lived longer than you, arsehole 🙂

      But what will poor Davos do now…?

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    16. BeautyBrinne,

      Actually now that i think about it,thank god that is the one thing he didn’t do from the books,it would have seem really cheesy on the screen like those old 80’s movie villains or cartoon villains .

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    17. He’s 100% dead and he was a 100% awesome actor this season. All the props for delivering this tragic, surprisingly human yet still monstrous character. I had so much hope for him at first, and it fell apart so quickly… He and Lena are the standouts this season IMO.

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    18. Arya Havin’ a Larf?,

      Thank god that Jon “died” before he took the loan from them like he did in the books otherwise the Watch would have been even more screwed than they already are .

      Oh also to be on topic,i didn’t really care for Stannis in the books even when he helped the watch,don’t know why,but Dillane’s performance brought some nuance to his character that i personally felt it was missing in the books .

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    19. I don’t think is really confirmed yet. So it’s so premature to say is done or not. We just don’t know anything (like jon snow). The majorities of the interviews about “Stannis presumable death” didn’t confirmed anything. Everyone right know is doing the same thing (and it’s so curious) , Gwendoline Christie doesn’t know if he is dead or not, David Nutter, the director of the finale, didn’t said anything about his death, he only said why he cut the scene and how he filmed that scene without confirming or denying anything. Benioff only said “he knows his time is come…and bla,bla,bla” nothing else. Weiss never opened his mouth about it and Martin too. The HBO site is not believable, we don’t know if the site have any contact with D&D, I think they just presumed that Jon, Stannis and even Myrcella are dead. Untill someone on the head of the show, like D&D, Martin or someone like Dillane himself will say “yes he is dead” or “yes he is alive” for me it’s neither alive nor death. We’re just speculating about it. I think we have to wait, season six or maybe “a winds of winter”. And sorry for my bad English it’s not my native language.

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    20. I really liked his potrayal of Stannis Baratheon , and personaly even if writers demonized character in this show i found simpathy for him, mostly due brilliant acting in scenes with Shireen, Davos and Blackwater.
      Show has lost great actor and character.

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    21. I’m a big fan of the show but not with this,killing such an important character off-screen it’s either poor writing either poor directing.Imagine last year Tyrion goes to see his father,talks with him and that’s it.Later we hear that Tywin is dead.But this is even worst,at least there we had the books but in Stannis’s case we don’t know yet what will happen to him.Really bad decision,this character was with us for 4 years and mentioned in the first year and they kill him off-screen like it doesn’t even mather for the story or anyone else.I loved the finale except for this part.
      Hands up to Dillane,a GoT legend.We lost many of those,that’s why I really want a good actor for Euron next year.And for Tarly too.

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    22. Not anyone could pull off the material he was given. (This is not a comment on the quality of it, but rather on the non-verbality.) He often had to convey the inner conflicts the character harboured without saying much (or anything at all). The scene, where he played the devil’s advocate just so he would hear the arguments, why it wasn’t alright to sacrifice Gendry, out loud, springs to mind. Or the scene where he seemed almost relieved for being able to justify (mostly to himself) his backing out of the scheduled Davos execution. Straying off from his charted path was always a big deal for Stannis. Stephen Dillane managed to take this and bring the character above the stubborn religious fanatic that his words and deeds often made him to be.

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    23. Great actor, great character, great end for both.

      Ser Gerold Dayne,

      We saw his last moments, we heard his last words, we saw him about to die. The only thing we didn’t see was his dead body. I don’t get why that’s bad writing. Weird directing to cut to Ramsay killing a rando, true. I’d rather they cut to a very far distance shot in which you can only see Brienne, or maybe even just the woods —A moment to contemplate the death.

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    24. Luka Nieto,

      Yeah,was it bad writing when they didn’t focus on Ned’s beheading and instead focused on Arya’s reaction ? No,it made for a more powerful scene . I agree with the showrunners that showing his death on screen in an episode where they were already so many deaths would have been a bit overkill,i don’t see how they ruined his death by not showing it on screen .

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    25. I know some people have thought S Dillane didn’t bring to life Stannis’ (albeit unwitting) humorous remarks but I thought way back in season 2 (when I was completely Unsullied) it was hilarious when he dictated the letter to all the high lords of Westeros – words to the effect that Robert wasn’t his beloved brother and that Jaime was “Ser Jaime Lannister” – whatever he’d done he was still a knight. I seem to have completely missed “John Adams” – can he do a convincing American accent? As I’m from the UK it’s easier for me to spot a non-British person doing a faulty British accent than to spot if a British actor doesn’t quite nail non-British accent. I was annoyed with the Stannis character for sacrificing Shireen though he was the only “king” who went to help the Night’s Watch. The King’s Landing lot were conspicuous by their absence. In “The Tunnel” Mr Dillane played a much less uptight character – I guess that is what good acting is about, being able to play a good person, a bad person or a somewhere in-between person. Thanks to Sue the Fury for the above feature too.

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    26. Great work on this curtain call.

      I’m a big fan of Mr. Dillane work and his time on Game ofThrones was truly extraordinary.Most memorable scene was the one in S05 E04 with Kerry Ingram as Shireen.Truly an amazing actor and part of truly awesome group Team Dragonstone.Game of Thrones lost another legend(last season Chales Dance).Hats off to you.

      Now Kit’s curtain call.

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    27. Wouldn’t say it’s 100% yet as we didn’t see him die and the show has been saying the same about Jon Snow (are we getting a curtain call for Kit Harrington?). I mean he most likely is just found the editing strange and the only reasoning I can think of is to leave some doubt to get people to tune in or to leave the confirmation for GRRM if he gets WoW out before the next season.
      So yeah he’s more than likely dead but I live in hope that we have the hail Mary chance of him surviving so we can get more of the excellent Stephen Dillane next season 🙂

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    28. It’s not the same as in Ned’s case,the order is clear 110% and everyone’s reaction shows that he’s dead.But in Stannis’s case there is no confirmation,they don’t have to show him dead,just show Brienne after she did it or something to confirm it.I have friends who are still convinced Stannis is very much alive.Not to talk about Stannis fans on the internet that come with all the crazy theories after this.If he is dead all this makes me believe it was poorly handled,if you kill an important character it has to be clear.What if Jon would have seen that sign and that was it?Then D&D come and tell us Jon is dead.And as I said before it is even more important with Stannis because he is not dead in the books yet and he will have a completely different death.

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    29. I’m still in doubt that he’s really dead! But this was a great write up for Dillane. He was amazing in the role and I respect any actor that can make me feel that bitter towards a character.

      I can’t hear the word “fewer” without thinking of Stannis! 🙂

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    30. I’m sorry,I don’t want to start an argument or anything,this is my last post on this article.
      Just want to say Stephen Dillane was amazing in all this years and he will be missed.

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    31. sati,

      I’m still grieving 🙁 Long live the king ! Stephen was absolutely terrific as Stannis. I hope he realises how brilliant he was at portraying him.

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    32. When Shireen was burnt, I was disappointed and mad at Stannis. But when he died, I noticed, that I never stopped loving him.

      Thank you, Stephen Dillane for being the perfect Stannis.

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    33. Love this actor since seeing him in “John Adams”, a show that I still watch 4th of July every year. He and Lena really deserve to be submitted for Emmy nominations this year. Thanks to Stephen for all his great work.

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    34. Dillane is an incredible actor. He played a similarly controlled character in the short lived Cinemax show Wanted, which I really enjoyed. I look forward to seeing him in other things. Why didn’t he do press for GoT?

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    35. Every actor did better with Dillane

      Of course they did because he is an incredibly talented (and under appreciated) actor.

      Dillane was a brilliant casting choice. I loved him as Thomas Jefferson in “John Adams.” He brought depth to Stannis that I never found in his book counterpart. Two of Dillane’s scenes in S5 are among my favorites: his talk with Shireen about greyscale and his “keep reading” discussion with Sam. His expression as Shireen is burning still haunts me. The show will be lesser without his presence. He is great actor and GOT was lucky to have him.

      As an aside, his “beautiful death” poster is amazing.

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    36. Morgoth:
      Beautiful curtain call. I remember not being pleased with Dillane back in S2, because he “didn’t look at all” like the Stannis I imagined in my head.
      But he totally won me over with his acting. Now I think there couldn’t be a better Stannis Baratheon. I’m going to miss both the character and the actor.

      Careful ! Linda will let you know how much better book-Stannis is.
      Oh, on that note: WotW – you naughty, naughty cast-news leaking site, you !
      Lulz.

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    37. Dame of Mercia:
      I seem to have completely missed “John Adams” – can he do a convincing American accent?

      He played Thomas Jefferson, it was on Channel 4 a long time back, I did watch it and don’t remember much about it but do recall the American accent was much less defined anyway at that time and they almost still sound British.

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    38. wizardeyes:
      Definitely one of the best actors on the show – he was perfect as Stannis. With losing Charles Dance last year and now Stephen Dillane this year I’m afraid Thrones is losing some of its most talented performers!

      Absolutely agree. It even worries me a bit for future seasons (although, I’m nearly at the point now where most of my emotional investment is leaning toward hope that the white walkers destroy all of humanity and it concludes as the Night King’s legions begin their journey for Essos) as there are very few actors with the talent to make unlikeable characters fascinating to watch, and almost everyone remotely likeable has been killed off.

      Being a mostly-Unsullied (I thrived on the bonus content in the bluray collections, which led me to discover more of the world in ASoIaF through forums such as this in order to fill glaring gaps the tv production had left me with during its first few seasons) when I do eventually pick up GRRM’s novels (strictly provided that they ever get finished! I personally despise when I have to wait 12 months for the next volume in an epic storyline, and I honestly doubt I could ever have maintained the enthusiasm so many of you show after having waited for some conclusion for over 20 years since the first novel’s release o.0) it will definitely be actors like Dillane, Dance, Dinklage, Headley and many others, that colour my mental perception of their portrayed character when I finally see them in print.

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    39. I disagree fundamentally with a line in this article. The most immoral act Stannis committed occurred in E10, not E09.

      Killing one person because you honestly believe it is necessary to prevent a zombie apocalypse (in which said person would die anyway almost certainly) is arguably not immoral whatsoever, let alone very immoral.

      However, forcing a couple thousand of your troops to commit suicide to no possible end whatsoever? THAT was immoral. An ethical person would have at worst gone Denethor and ordered his troops to die as they choose. The Mannis would have sent his troops to the Wall, and either gone with them or gone hooded man. Of course, the Mannis wouldn’t be in this situation in the first place as he knows how to handle a stressed military camp, and is not an incompetent boob like TV Stannis was.

      Quick question: Name five major characters in the show who are NOT murderers….Ned, Sansa, Bran, Sansa….hmmmm…..getting hard already….

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    40. Loved Stannis as a person. If only he hadn’t gone all religious fanatic. It does jar a bit with his memory of abandoning belief in a deity that can kill his parents and leave him and his brothers as orphans.

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    41. Stephen Dillane was utterly fantastic as Stannis. Played to perfection. Every scene he was in was just brilliant. Incredible actor.

      Sad to see him go, especially since Stannis’ story feels unfinished to me but anyway I wish him the best in his future career.

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    42. Does anyone remember that Stephen Dillane also played the role of Thomas Jefferson in HBO’s “John Adams” mini series in 2005? I loved him in that role. If anyone cares to catch him in that role, it’s still on HBO GO and HBO NOW.

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    43. Great curtain call, very well written.

      Ah, Stannis, I liked you, then I hated you, then I liked you and cheered for you again.
      Stephen Dillane really made you feel things for Stannis.
      In a messed up way, he was a goodie in my eyes until Shireen’s sacrifice, when I said wake up and smell the murders!!! So I did. I Wanted his head on a spike, but that lasted one week. After episode 10, after the abandoning of his army, and his wife’s suicide, I felt bad for him. I wanted Stannis to prevail in the end, but he didn’t. Ultimately you can say he got what he deserved, but it wont change how we felt about it. Also, if that meant Mel running over to save Jon, then so be it.
      The show has lost a very interesting character, and a phenomenal actor. He was also very handsome. 😉

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    44. “Do your duty”. Stannis did his and Dillane did his, brilliantly. I’ll miss the character and the actor a huge amount.

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    45. “By the end of the second season, Stephen Dillane had completely overtaken the visual of Stannis I had in my mind from the books, and for a long-time ASOIAF fan, that’s saying a lot.”

      The above quotation sums up my thoughts on Dillane’s performance perfectly. I came to the books after watching season one, so met Stannis on the page before the screen. My first encounter with him on the TV show left me unconvinced but after a while, Dilliane became the real Stannis to the degree that I can’t even remember how I expected him to look. Stannis was my favorite character from both book and show and I’m totally devastated that he’s gone. It’s testament to Dillane that he was able to make Stannis a character that I was wholehartedly behind (even when he was making the most brutal choices). I don’t think you could ever describe Stannis as likeable but I certainly liked him, and that was in no small part down to Dillane. I watched the season finale again last night and the moment when he sees the Bolton cavalry charging is just a fantastic piece of acting. Not a word said and hardly a flicker of emotion on his face but you know that he’s thinking of all of the choices he’s made that have brought him to this point and you can see his acceptance of the fact that this is how it is all going to end for him (sorry troops, he’s definitely dead).

      Bravo Stephen Dillane. You will be missed!

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    46. I’m going to miss Stannis. It’s just now sinking in with the finale having so much to process. I loved all the various character combinations on team Dragonstone and will miss it too.

      Dillane really embodied Stannis so well. In the few interviews I’ve read with him he seems to be also serious but with a dry sense of wit that you have to be quick to catch. Casting him was a great choice. I remember people complaining about his hair not being dark enough at first but those complaints went away once people actually saw his performance.

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    47. Not only is he obviously dead, but he got one of the series’s better death scenes, with Brienne bringing his first great crime back to haunt him. It was simple, quick, and functional, unbelievably fitting in a show full of undeservedly gruesome deaths.

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    48. I’m really, really going to miss Dillane. I’ve been a fan of his since I saw him yonks ago on British TV but I wasn’t sure if he was right for Stannis. Turns out he’s been one of the best actors on the show. His performance was intelligent and non showy, it took time to build and was subtle rather than obvious, something I really appreciated when other performances lacked subtly. Great actors can do marvellous things with very little dialogue. His end was very Stannis like – do your duty – but I wish he wasn’t gone. 🙁

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    49. TheTouchOfFrost,

      That editting is hardly strange: it has been used in dozens of films and tv shows in the past. What was effective is that it bsdically made it Stannis’ PoV.

      Dillane gave a very solid performance throughout. He did a great job of playing a man who had been dead inside for a long, long time.

      And “do your duty” has to be the most fitting final words for Stannis. Dillane gave that line perfectly: it was just another dutiful event.

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    50. Brilliantly cast. Brilliantly performed.
      He broke before he bent..

      I will honor him by having a burnt brat at a Father’s Day Bar-B-Q (oh the irony) I’m going to.

      The King is dead. Long live the King!

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    51. Arya Havin’ a Larf?,

      Oh thanks for the clip. Yes they do sound rather English (regarding accents). I’ve heard another theory that it was not the American accent that changed and became more “twangy” but the English one that lost the twang as time went by. Not that I’m an expert. Sometimes a dodgy accent can stop me getting lost in a performance and unable to adopt the “willing suspension of disbelief”. I can forgive Peter Dinklage is (very occasional) slip in that department because his acting otherwise is so convincing. But this is Mr Dillane’s curtain call and I shouldn’t go off the topic.

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    52. I can’t forgive what he did to Shireen…but he went out like his nickname implies…

      RIP Stannis…you will be DEARLY missed…I hope and pray your fate is different in the Winds of Winter.

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    53. Until I see a body, I remain skeptical. After all, GRRM himself advised us in that preview chapter that we may hear he is dead … and it might even be true.

      May and might mean a lot when people actually expect Pincushion Snow to leap up and do the Macarena. 😉

      Oh and P. S. since I lost the topic:

      Mr. Dillane did an astonishing job. Honestly, who ever would have thought that viewers would say “Woot! Stannis scenes tonight!”

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    54. Stannis should have choked a b****: Stephen Dillane should get the Emmy nomination this year.

      Dillane should get an education award. Thanks to him, thousands and thousands of geeks now know at least one circumstance where they are supposed to use “fewer” rather than “less”!

      😀

      (That was a great combination of acting, directing and writing: Stannis is just the sort who would reflexively correct other people’s mistakes, and Dillane delivered it so matter-of-factly.)

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    55. Huge appreciation for Dillane’s work. This Thread is his by right!
      He made me go from having zero interest in Stannis whatsoever to finding him one of the most compelling characters on a show not exactly lacking with them. I was always looking out for one of his super-sublte expressions and voice modulations and was never disappointed, what a treat! I’ll miss the grey man.

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    56. I agree with others that his final line is perfect. “Do your duty.” Stannis’s entire character summed up in three words.

      A fond farewell to Mr. Dillane who was one of the best damn actors on the show by far. The man is Stannis, and I’ll definitely have his voice and likeness in mind whenever reading his parts in the books from now on.

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    57. Stephen Dillane was an amazing addition to GoT.

      I put him right up there with the likes of Charles Dance and Diana Riggs.

      He just has that amazing screen presence and he brought Stannis to life.

      So sad we will no longer be able to enjoy his performances.

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    58. GhostCR: You forgot, Warden of the English Language…

      What would have made it truly complete is if he had corrected someone on the use of “irony” at some point. I could totally see Dillane doing that dead-serious while some slack-jawed yokels just looked at him in askance!

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    59. I enjoyed the dynamic of Team Dragonstone. Dillane’s interactions with all of his cohorts since S2 were memorable and at times stunning and sublime. Stannis was adapted well and portrayed even better. I’ll miss Team Dragonstone and their tragic, delusional and manipulated leader with faux Lightbringer.

      As an aside, I can’t wait to read how the Battle of WF and Shireen’s sacrifice really goes down in TWoW. I also would like to know more about how Stannis and others initially saved poor Shireen from greyscale.

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    60. Stannis’s casting was the one I anticipated most in the summer of 2011, after binge-reading the entire book series after finishing Season One. He didn’t look how I imagined, but once I watched him on screen, it felt like Stannis.

      Dillane really brought to life the hard, rough, anti-charisma Stannis emanated from the page. And he brought a surprisingly softer side to him with scene partner Kerry Ingram.

      Stannis’s arc in the show now constitutes a classic tragedy. Bound by duty, Stannis played with fire, and in his driven quest for the throne, lost everything. It will be a bitter pill to swallow re-watching Stannis’s story from the beginning, but it will have been anchored by Dillane’s dedicated portrayal.

      Stannis the Mannis!

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    61. Hodor’s Bastard:
      I loved the dynamic of Team Dragonstone. Dillane’s interactions with all of his cohorts since S2 were memorable and at times stunning. Stannis was adapted well and portrayed even better. I’ll miss Team Dragonstone and their tragic, delusional and manipulated leader with faux Lightbringer.

      This is a great point. Team Dragonstone is no more and that, too, is a loss. Who knows what path Davos and Mel will travel now? Davos was an excellent counterpoint to Stannis. Dillane and Cunningham had a great chemistry.

      Wimsey:

      (That was a great combination of acting, directing and writing: Stannis is just the sort who would reflexively correct other people’s mistakes, and Dillane delivered it so matter-of-factly.)

      A perfect scene! Davos’ reaction was well done.

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    62. Stephen Dillane really played Stannis well, and made the character so much more interesting in the show. No wonder people wish this wasn’t yet the end of his duty to the realm…

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    63. Xanth:
      Like 99% sure he isn’t dead, but whatever. Seemed obvious to me he wasn’t.

      The episode cut out for DRAMATIC EFFECT as Brienne’s sword swung toward him, stopping mere milliseconds before it came crashing into his throat and severing his head from the rest of his body, a task Brienne has wanted to carry out for the better part of the past four seasons. How in the world does a rational human being think this is “obvious” he isn’t dead?

      He’s dead. HBO says he’s dead. All the interviews say he’s dead. Stannis. Is. Dead.

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    64. I loved Stannis’ final scenes. Some people will think it was rushed but it’s the kind of situation where in the books a character can spend one moment thinking and ruminating on a thousand things; Stephen Dillane did so much with his body. I’d agree with this line from The Guardian newspaper: “For me the standout has been Stephen Dillane, whose subtle portrayal of a broken man barely living with the reality of his actions was immaculate.”

      Stannis losing all but charging into the fray with a very beleagured army, even if it meant his death, reminded me of the Old English warrior ethos celebrated in poems like The Battle of Maldon.

      I loved it. Thank you Stephen, you were the Mannis.

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    65. Dame of Mercia: I can forgive Peter Dinklage is (very occasional) slip in that department because his acting otherwise is so convincing. But this is Mr Dillane’s curtain call and I shouldn’t go off the topic.

      Stannis probably wouldn’t forgive me typing “is (very occasional) slip” rather than “his (very occasional) slip” – in my defence I’ll say I think the h key on my keyboard has problems.

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    66. Hodor’s Bastard: As an aside, I can’t wait to read how the Battle of WF and Shireen’s sacrifice really goes down in TWoW.

      heh, I think that GRRM would be the first to tell you that it “really” never happens! That written, I, too, am curious to see how it happens in the written version. My bet is that it will be the same cat skinned differently. Which is fitting, as Stannis didn’t like cats!

      Back on track, I thought that Stannis’ asides where he judged different species were a great way to develop Stannis’ character in a short conversation; Dillane gave those “parenthetical” or “aside” deliveries so very well, too. In so many ways, it set up what was to come: Stannis likes dogs because dogs are loyal creatures, but they had to be sacrificed to the cause. (Learning that Stannis was not a cat person was perhaps the least surprising bit of character development ever, too.)

      The real shame is that Dillane and Cunningham had a great “straight man / straighter man” act going. I’d like to see the two of them as a pair again in something.

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    67. Wimsey: The real shame is that Dillane and Cunningham had a great “straight man / straighter man” act going. I’d like to see the two of them as a pair again in something.

      Agreed. I commend the show for extending the highly-interesting dynamic between Davos-Stannis & Davos-Shireen in the north. By that time in the books, they had long since parted ways.

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    68. Hodor’s Bastard,

      Yeah, and this is a good example of some things that TV/cinema can do that books cannot. There are subtleties to interpersonal interactions that words just cannot capture in full detail. I thought that Dillane and Cunningham took words that said “pastry” and gave us an exquisite cherry pie baked and spiced to perfection. (Has anybody noticed that I like cherry pie?)

      Harkening back to an earlier conversation we had about Stannis and Dillane, what Dillane’s performance made me do was not like Stannis (I never did), but pity him. I had this vague feeling that, huh, maybe if someone had taken the time to be his friend, then maybe he would have turned out a different person: and, of course, reminding me of real individuals for whom I wish that was true! That’s silly, of course: but good performances can invoke those feelings in us.

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    69. Stannis had the perfect friend in Davos. Just wish he would have listened to him more often. If only he would have won Blackwater. That was the beginning of Stanniss downfall.

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    70. Valiryian,

      If there’s a priestess capable of resurrection hanging out in the woods outside Winterfell, that would be an equal possibility. But it’s not. Stannis is dead. You gotta let it go.

      Jon is also dead. But might not stay that way. Different story.

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    71. It’s kinda funny to watch this Stannis character featurette in retrospect. Stephen Dillane ends it with: “Stannis will perhaps do anything to get the throne.” It has to be noted that at that point he couldn’t have known he’ll burn his own daughter … Hell, Stannis didn’t even have a daughter back then. 😀
      I, for one, didn’t fully realize what “all” really meant, back then.

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    72. Stephen Dillane will be hugely missed by this girl. Stannis was never anything if not resolute, and even when I didn’t like him, I admired that.

      I personally think that in this universe, anyone can be brought back if they want them to be. I doubt they will with him. There are no 100%s.

      In a way, I was a bit disappointed that his epic 5 minute downfall was so drastic that it was almost comical. Your Grace….Whoops, there goes half the army. Your Grace…. Hey, can’t be worse than mutiny! Crap, wife’s dead. Your Grace….wtf, Mel? Just like that, huh? Your Grace…..shit, there be Boltons. Whelp, now I’m on my own in these conveniently located woods and can barely walk, but I’ll kill these 2 dudes. Crap, my leg is screwed. Who the hell is that? Oh for the love of…..

      Only Stephen Dillane could have pulled off that with a straight face. Thank the gods for him. 🙂

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    73. Superb work! Excellent actor! BRAVO!!!! Despite the Shireen episode and hating Stannis for that, I will miss Stannis and especially Mr. Dillaine and his stern faces. He made me love Stannis’s character in the show. Of course, until the Shireen episode. Those final moments where he receives all the bad news and he knows he is doomed. BRAVO!! Perfect

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    74. Mr Dillane made my least favorite and one of the most hated characters actually likeable this season. I had a feeling it would be his last because he was so amazing in every scene and well rounded. GoT is losing arguably its best actor….

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    75. I will keep this short…

      Stephen Dillane was, perhaps, my favourite casting of the entire series so far.

      He will be missed.

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    76. I really thought Stannis would sit on the Iron Throne… briefly anyways.

      A fantastic portrayal of a complex character. Thank you, Mr. Dillane.

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    77. Nice tribute to the show’s most underused, high-caliber actor. Even with Stannis’s increased prominence this year, it’s a shame how the end of his arc was shoved into the first twenty minutes of the finale episode when Dillane easily could have carried it as the main event. I don’t think we’ll quite realize how much we miss him until next year, in the absence of a subtle, deliberate, and utterly lived-in performance to match his Stannis. In a show full of over-the-top characters (and actors to match them…) Stephen Dillane has been such a breath of fresh air with his willingness to defer to the actual story being told and the verisimilitude of the character as he understood it.

      And by the gods did he understand it. The writers may have largely skipped out on Stannis’s obsession with justice and duty, but Dillane somehow managed to fill in the blanks with nuances that made Stannis a REAL character onscreen and elevated him to more than just a one-line description. The way he played off his screen partners was so, so thrilling to watch. He added such a surprising delicacy to Stannis’s interactions with both Shireen and Selyse that you could tell just how he held his family at arm’s length while trying to do his duty by them. I loved the familiarity and camaraderie he had with Liam Cunningham’s Davos most of all–they made it look ridiculously easy.

      Basically, Dillane as Stannis was my favorite thing about the show and I will miss him. Looking forward to reading the next book in the series and imagining every Stannis line in his voice (…as I choke back my pique that we won’t get to see any of it on the show)! In the meantime, I’m excited about The Tunnel 2!

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    78. Stephen Dillane was one of the best actors on GoT, and he gave the strongest performance this season in my opinion. Even when straying from the books, his scenes felt the most thematically and tonally true to GoT this season. With other actors, it sometimes feels they are playing another character on a newer, grander, slicker show – you can tell 5 years have passed. But Stephen’s Stannis in Season 5, felt the same as his Stannis in Seasons 2, 3, and 4.

      His loss will be felt on many levels, not just as an individual actor. As has been noted, other actors lit up when he was around, even other greats like Ciaran Hinds. And Team Dragonstone was simply superb all around. There are other great actors on the show, but I believe Stephen, Liam, and Carice have represented the single greatest concentration of acting talent. I will be interested to see what the show looks like now that the trifecta is broken.

      Further, Stannis will be missed as a character. BookStannis and ShowStannis are different beasts, but they are both fascinating. And they both demand we question ideas of faith, destiny, and terrible actions committed for the “greater good.” What’s more is the interesting parallel of the use of fire magic, and burnings committed by him and Dany, and its implications. I hope D&D and George (whenever Stannis perishes in the books) continue to effectively highlight these fascinating themes in other plot-lines moving forward.

      Thank you, Stephen. I could never tell if you were really a fan of this show given the manner you spoke about it, when you could be troubled to speak about it, but if you weren’t, then I’m all the more impressed by the level of commitment, seriousness, and professionalism you put forward in bringing this character to life – truly the mark of a great actor.

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    79. Cian,

      That all literally means jack shit. They can say he’s dead all they want but the reality is we don’t see him die. We just see Brienne swing her sword and no shot of Stannis getting hit. Stannis “dying” off screen in a show that traditionally shows main characters being killed on-screen is too questionable to say definitively that he’s dead. GoT PR can say he’s dead as much as they want to but until we get proof that Stannis is dead next season, I don’t buy it.

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    80. This season was obviously the culmination of Dillane’s excellent overall performance in the GOT. From small to big, from the discrete but unequivocal nod of approval to Jon Snow after the decapitation of J. Slynt to the petrified and suffocated despair in that horrible scene. And then the finale, epic and tragic at the same time. Kudos to Dillane!

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    81. Sue the Fury:
      Yhamm,

      Yes. In several interviews and on HBO websites. He is dead.

      Well, by this measure several interviews and the HBO website list Jon Snow as dead too. So will we be getting a Kit Harington curtain call?

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    82. Truly a great performance. Of all the kings claiming to be the rightful king, I felt like Stannis had the best claim —and I appreciated him even more for acknowledging the beheading of Ned and the needs of the Night’s Watch. I hold out hope that the character is not dead in the books. As for the show, if he is dead, I like that it was Brienne who took him out.

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    83. Kingslayer: Stannis “dying” off screen in a show that traditionally shows main characters being killed on-screen is too questionable to say definitively that he’s dead.

      Why should the show always show major characters getting killed in the same way? That would get repetitive. What they did has been done on plenty of other shows (Sopranos, anyone?) and is a familiar narrative device to the audience.

      Doug: So will we be getting a Kit Harington curtain call?

      The staff has said that they would be providing one. Presumably, they are saving the biggest for last. (Is he next, or have I lost count?)

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    84. Of course we’ll get a Kit Harington one – whatever happens later on, he’s dead for now. Perhaps with an asterisk beside his name. 😉

      I mean, Rory got one……..

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    85. Stephen Dillane – a fantastic actor and he brought the doomed character of Stannis to life masterfully.
      I was never a Stannis fan and I am very glad and relieved to see him go, but it was Dillane’s performance, especially this season with the material he was given, that made me clearly see into this tragic “second son” character.

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    86. Doug,

      Jon Snow is dead.

      Of course he’s also at a castle with a red priestess so ya know. Different story.

      I think people are ignoring, because they frankly want to, the obvious fact that Stannis’s story this season led to his death. There is nowhere else for him to go- he’s done. The writers conveyed an arc for Stannis that led to this as the only possible conclusion for him this year.

      Whereas Jon Snow is not done and it would be baffling if he were never coming back, considering all the foreshadowing about his destiny, for him to be truly dead.

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    87. Cameryn: The episode cut out for DRAMATIC EFFECT as Brienne’s sword swung toward him, stopping mere milliseconds before it came crashing into his throat and severing his head from the rest of his body, a task Brienne has wanted to carry out for the better part of the past four seasons.How in the world does a rational human being think this is “obvious” he isn’t dead?

      He’s dead.HBO says he’s dead.All the interviews say he’s dead.Stannis.Is.Dead.

      We didn’t see any of that. We saw Brienne swing her sword…and cut scene.

      He may or may not be dead, but you are arguing something that never happened. We saw nothing that would confirm or deny his death because we only saw a shot of Brienne.

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    88. Chad Brick,

      Ned killed that lad who ran off from the Nights Watch ( Will was it?) in the first episode. Is sanctioned killing still murder? He also killed Lady ( not sure if animal murder is counted) and may have killed some Lannister guardsmen in that tussle outside LF’s brothel ( I can’t remember). Plus in the past he’s murdered plenty of people!
      Bran may have subconciously warged into Summer to kill his assassin in the first season but I think we can give him pass.
      Not sure Davos has killed anyone. Nor Qyburn, Pycelle, the chap from the Iron Bank Mark Gatiss plays, Rickon, Tommen, Margery, Olenna, Mace, etc. Take the point that that murderers aren’t always necessarily nasty people though.

      Again, I agree that Stannis is most likely dead but if we’re not ruling Jon Snow’s survival out then you can’t rule out Stannis’. Both have yet to have their fates revealed in the books and if anything Stannis’ death was less clear than Jon’s. HBO have confirmed Jon dead as they have Stannis so do we really believe anything they say at this point? We didn’t see the killing blow. I think he is but to be 100% about it (or anything for that matter) is foolish.

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    89. “There is nowhere else for him to go- he’s done. The writers conveyed an arc for Stannis that led to this as the only possible conclusion for him this year.”

      Agree with this entirely. I’m gutted he’s gone but that episode was quite clearly the end of his story. What would he do if he came back? Limp about the woods with Brienne? He’s a goner. Bringing him back would involve some seriously convoluted storytelling. Even though his ending was a tad rushed, it was an appropriate way for Stannis to go – gritting his teeth and facing, head-on, the final, inevitable consequences of his previous decisions. Dillane played it brilliantly.

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    90. Wow, Sue, that was a well-written and very convincing tribute. As everyone has said, Dillane is one of the best actors we’ve had on the show. I hated book-Stannis, but Dillane made him a control-freak with humanity. Those little touches, often in the writing, but sometimes purely by dint of little details Dillane conveyed about the character, saved him from being the capable automaton book–Stannis was. In the books, I could never understand why Ned thought bloodline was enough to back him, knowing his weakness as a human and leader. But Dillane’s Stannis was more deserving. He was even kingly–saving the Watch and understanding the Others’ menace. He thought in kingdomly dimensions. Minus the influence of Melisandre he would have been worthy of the throne. Take him for all in all, we shall not look upon his like again.

      With Dillane out, almost all the excellent senior actors in important roles are gone. Bean, Dance, Dillane, Hinds–they all brought gravitas, intensity, and star power to their very different characters. Few of their peers remain–Pryce, Glen, and Rigg are all. Like in the series, a slightly younger generation of actors continues to share the stage, but I for one miss the old guard. I felt a real thrill whenever any of them was on-screen.

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    91. People debating his death when HBO has confirmed it… is hysterical. Who cares if they showed it. There is no other logical explanation. Just like Syrio. People complain when the show makes things too simple. Those same people get mad when the show doesn’t spell out everything like a characters death that was beyond obvious.

      As for the character himself…. what an amazing job Dillane did. Stannis is my favorite character so far.

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    92. TheTouchOfFrost:
      Chad Brick,

      Again, I agree that Stannis is most likely dead but if we’re not ruling Jon Snow’s survival out then you can’t rule out Stannis’. Both have yet to have their fates revealed in the books and if anything Stannis’ death was less clear than Jon’s. HBO have confirmed Jon dead as they have Stannis so do we really believe anything they say at this point? We didn’t see the killing blow. I think he is but to be 100% about it (or anything for that matter) is foolish.

      Exactly this. Whatever evidence or suggestion or theory or anything else is given, Game of Thrones and ASOIAF will end before we ‘know’ anything for certain, and likely not even then. 😉

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    93. Hands down one of the best actors on the show! Stephen is such a classy actor, he brought great gravitas and depth to Stannis. I am going to miss him very much.

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    94. Stephen Dillane really was a hell of a choice for Stannis, and he really became a stalwart part of the cast for the four seasons he was on the show. His habitation of the character was so strong that some of the best of Stannis was just the way people described him, like Cersei in Blackwater: “But this is the great Stannis Baratheon…I’d have better luck seducing his horse.”

      He always kind of kept straddling the line between someone you could root for or someone you’d despise, until of course he did the unthinkable, and burned his daughter. That cast in new light the scene in Mhysa, when he stands, Melisandre on one shoulder, Davos on the other, his light and darkness, asking that question, “What’s one person against Seven Kingdoms?” “Everything,” Davos replies. Davos was the only one who could save him from himself, and in the end, he sent him away, his conscience. And that, of course, was that.

      Stannis is dead. To believe otherwise is to keep this broken man alive when his character has nowhere to go in the story, and it’s to believe Brienne at the last moment hesitated in her quest for revenge – or that she missed.

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    95. are people seriously still debating whether he’s dead or not? I mean come on!

      what is left for him to do in the story ?his main purpose and point was to become the king , that purpose was utterly destroyed when he was defeated, lost his family and lost his religious red lady!

      tHe whole Brienne thing showing up at the end to finish him off was both unnecessary and very unrealistic!

      realistically speaking he should have been killed in the battlefield or maybe taken prisoner and then tortured / executed by the Boltons!

      but either way please get Over it, he is dead dead dead!

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    96. The Night’s King Stannis. 😛

      Stephen Dillane was one of the last of a group of fantastic established actors that I’ll miss seeing each week. He, Ian McElhinney, Ciaran Hinds, and Peter Vaughan will leave a definite void.

      I don’t believe Stannis is alive, and I don’t think he’s being resurrected. We also don’t get to pick who GRRM does or doesn’t resurrect, in what fashion or for what reason, so I don’t pretend to know, and I’m hardly going to tell anyone what they should think. I just wish he had a more believable end (not actual end – I actually like that Brienne killed him and that he recognized he was done in typical Stannis fashion). Mel just buggering off like that was disappointing, random, and cowardly after all that time, imo. And who knew Selyse could tie such a mean knot?!

      I wouldn’t mind a Dillane and Cunningham comedy sketch…

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    97. Probably the best actor on the show this year. He and Lena deserve nominations.

      Now, tomorrow’s curtain call should be interesting.

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    98. Dillane did an awesome job with a good role. I think it is roles and performances like this – perhaps a little below the marque ultra main characters – that really make for good viewing.

      He nailed the role right down to his last words – “Go on – do your duty”. Pure Stannis.

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    99. Dillane was one of the best castings on the series. He made Stannis just practical enough you keep hoping he’d finally listen to Davos’ advice, yet rigid enough that he infuriates us by continuing on the same foolhardy path set by Melisandre’s visions. Dillane made him human and compelling throughout.

      In the end, Stannis may be the story’s most tragic character. A man fully capable of winning the throne on his own, but undone by his impatience and choosing the easy way (listening to Mel).

      Thank you, Mr. Dillane. I hope GoT will give him more opportunities for higher-profile roles in TV and movies.

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    100. Sue the Fury: Scroll up and read my other posts. He’s dead.

      So, when next season rolls around and this never comes up (and the “Handsome young man” never is revisited, etc., etc.), are people going to complain that these things were never “resolved” on the show?

      Or will people finally accept after Episode 10 of Season 7 that maybe what we saw is what we got?

      (I am reminded of the Harry Potter fandom, where people were upset that after the 7th book, “what happened to Sirius Black?” was never “resolved.” Rowling pointed out that, um, he died at the end of book 5, and that there therefore was nothing left to resolve.)

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    101. Wimsey:
      Sue the Fury,

      Or priest!That doubles the odds too…. let’s see…. carry the 2….. um….

      zero.

      OK, carry on, then.

      Or an unchained Maester. Even if Brienne took his head off, I’m sure Qyburn could find a spare one somewhere. Oh wait, he’s a month’s journey away, and working for your enemies.

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    102. I tried to keep it short earlier, but man… I loved Dillane’s performance in this show so much that I need to rave a little more. He’s kept me entertained since Season 2, and has so many quotable lines. Great facial expressions. Ahhhh, I miss him already.

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    103. Great actor, great character. Dillane made me love Stannis so much more. But HBO just ruined him in the last minute. Honestly, it would have been a lot better if they just killed him as the amazing good guy he was.

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    104. Stannis fans: STOP thinking he’s alive. That’s all Dumb&Dumber want from us, so they can humiliate his fans one last time in the next season by showing his head in Hershel style, just to break our hearts again.

      They never respected the character, not the way Stannis deserved to be served to the viewers. That won’t change now.

      HE’S DEAD.

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    105. To me Stannis wasn’t a likeable person and his willingness to cause others an unnecessarily horrible death by burning them alive, plus what I would think of as ‘cheating’ by using magic against those who didn’t have the same option, meant I could never get behind him, despite his legitimate claim to the throne. But episode 10 got me right in the feels, damn you GoT! When Brienne approached he was a completely broken man who’d lost everything due to his own actions. The road to hell is paved with good intentions indeed. Stannis, Mel and Davos all managed to say more with their facial expressions last week than pages of dialogue could achieve. Wonderful acting all around. I won’t miss Stannis but I will miss Stephen Dillane.

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    106. Tormund’s Woman: As for Stephen Dillane, he’ll continue on. He’s already working on series 2 of The Tunnel. Otherwise known as the TV show he’ll actually do press for. Dillane’s gift for dodging GoT red carpets, press junkets, and any public event he can is admirable, and another aspect of him I’ll miss. I’m not saying he’s actually Stannis because he does smile and laugh…but he’s a little bit Stannis. Just a little bit. Enough to make him the ideal man for the job.

      Yeah this as well

      As for Stephen Dillane, he’ll continue on. He’s already working on series 2 of The Tunnel. Otherwise known as the TV show he’ll actually do press for. Dillane’s gift for dodging GoT red carpets, press junkets, and any public event he can is admirable, and another aspect of him I’ll miss. I’m not saying he’s actually Stannis because he does smile and laugh…but he’s a little bit Stannis. Just a little bit. Enough to make him the ideal man for the job.

      In a strange way as a viewer you always buy the character more when the character seems like a version of the actor, so those dodging of Press and Red Carpets was exactly what Stannis would do

      Dillane did a fantastic job, did great interacting with the diverse range of characters he had to interact with

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    107. Telegram from Davos, his musical tribute

      Not so loosely based on The Cranberries ‘Linger’

      If you, if you could return
      Don’t let her burn
      Don’t let it fade
      I’m sure I’m not being rude
      But it’s just your attitude
      It’s tearing me apart
      It’s ruining every day
      For me
      I swore I would be true
      And fellow, so did you
      The Red Woman led you astray
      And so you sent me away
      Were you lying all the time?
      Was it just a game to you?
      But I’m in so deep
      You know I’m such a fool for you
      Even though you cut off my fingers
      Did you have to let her linger?
      Did you have to, did you have to, did have to let her linger?

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    108. We stripped him of his Mannis title in our house after he roasted Shireen (which we knew was coming and tried to skip past, only to not go far enough and catch a couple frames of screaming), but the fact that I was Team Stannis all the way UP to that point, and the fact that Dillane’s acting in that scene was able to completely turn me around into being off the team, speaks volumes to his quality. And like the write-up said…everyone acted better around him.

      Kudos Mr Dillane!

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    109. Carol:
      Stannis fans: STOP thinking he’s alive. That’s all Dumb&Dumber want from us, so they can humiliate his fans one last time in the next season by showing his head in Hershel style, just to break our hearts again.

      They never respected the character, not the way Stannis deserved to be served to the viewers. That won’t change now.

      HE’S DEAD.

      Lol

      Shows adopt the death swing/bullet for dramatic effect and yet some people still don’t believe

      Reminds me a little bit of the Governor in WD

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    110. He became my FAVORITE male actor on this show, so heartbroken to see him go. What he could do with his eyes alone… I always remember that scene where Mel shows him the flames near the end of Season 2, I think it is. Ugh.

      I personally think that the show with Dillane’s help did a brilliant showcasing this character this season from start to finish. The entire audience was mostly with him, with him, TOTALLY with him, and then 100% WEREN’T. It was like Oberyn last season, hoisted by his own petard. In Stannis’ case, in his mind, he made the ultimate utilitarian choice, he did his duty, but he was completely wrong. I really do think this is what will happen with the book character as well, because it is exactly the kind of thing GRRM would do. Set things up that Shireen being killed will be the difficult answer to Stannis’ woes, but then it doesn’t work at all.

      What Stannis story really demonstrates, is that even the most admirable, duty-driven person can, and sometimes does, cross a moral event horizon and become despicable. It makes me wonder what GRRM might do with other notable protagonists, perhaps Tyrion, or Dany will cross a similar moral threshold, and become widely hated. I could see it.

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    111. Great curtain call.

      I have no idea how many times Dullane would make some kind if expression on his face and I would think “What a great actor.” He would express so much without going overboard, and sometimes, like in his death scene, his performance would almost invite us to try to read his thoughts, and of course he never would verbally make it easier for us.

      His performance in “Dance of Dragons” is probably his best work on the show, although he’s always been excellent. Favorite scene has to be his last one with Shireen…so much barely contained emotions…man, what a great actor, one of the absolute best in an excellent ensemble.

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    112. As a big fan of Stannis, The Mannis, I was very happy the way Dillane portrayed him in the show. I’m looking forward to see him in other projects.

      RIP the one true King. 🙁

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    113. Sue the Fury,

      Although I agree he’s dead, I COMPLETELY disagree about his story being done. As a matter of fact, I think it’s an absolute shame to kill his character. The things you can do with that character – a man who followed a false prophesy to kill his family and everything. That’s drama! Risking it all…and losing! It’s a shame they killed him, and his story did not have to end..there was so much potential.

      And on the topic – Dillane did such a fantastic job. Kudos for one of my favourite actors this series!!

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    114. Arya Havin’ a Larf?,

      Totally just sang that in my head. Thank you so much for that!!!

      Related to the topic at hand, thank you Sue for a wonderful curtain call. There were many other actors that people had in mind to play Stannis, but Dillane did a wonderful job with everything he was given. Good on you for acknowledging it. Great write-up!!

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    115. Sue talks about Stannis having no where to go plot-wise, but George has said that Stannis is one of the few characters that comes to understand that the real issue lies beyond the wall. Neither TV nor Book versions have Stannis have come to that realisation yet. A Stannis who’s lost everything could have interesting places to go, especially if he turns that stubborness on the White Walkers.

      (Beautiful write-up on a wonderful actor, Sue! Stephen Dillane was/is/who knows such a gift to the show.)

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    116. The director of episode 10 said it would have been gratuitous to show Stannis losing his head, and probably a waste of CGI money too IMHO.
      Yhamm,

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    117. Carol,

      Can you criticise something without insulting the showrunners you nimwit,or do all purists have the mentality of 12 year olds ? This is a serious question btw. Duh,look how funny i am ,i transformed the showrunners initials into a dum,immature insult,hahaha,how cool i am……..fucking moron !

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    118. Haven’t read the comments. Seeing the one right above mine, don’t think I will when I do have more time :/

      Just came to say that for me, too, Stephen Dillane will be Stannis when I re-read a Song of ice and fire again. Really wish he’d been given more to do in seasons past.

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    119. The only reason I think Stannis is really dead is D&D’s insistence on Jon being dead because they showed the body, yadda yadda. Would be classic to then flip the trope and bring back the dude who was obviously dead and let the guy everyone assumes is alive really be dead.

      That all said, I really hoped Stannis would end up the 1000th Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch.

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    120. I’m hoping that Stannis wasn’t killed by Brienne and she spared his life. I so enjoyed the amazing character Stannis Baratheon. Stephen Dillane played him with such depth and emotion.

      Stephen Dillane has always been my favorite actor. I first saw him as Horatio in Hamlet in the movie theatre. I’ve been following him ever since. My favorites are Firelight, The Tunnel, GOT, John Adams, Fugitive Pieces, Populoupolous and sons, and Kings in Grass Castles. He is such an incredible actor and I truly adore him. I can’t wait for The Tunnel season 2 and to see him in a play. I’m hoping this isn’t it for Stannis but I’ll always have his fantastic parts to look back on dvd. I will miss him on GOT !

      So handsome Stephen Dillane in your face, your stance, the way you dress, your acting, and your beautiful smile. You entertain us all and thank you for sharing your wonderful gift of acting with us. Love you Stephen 🙂

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    121. Great actor, playing a character i despised (never got the appeal of Stannis)…. I couldn’t help but cheer when Brienne offed him…(sorry!) I DO want to watch the John Adams miniseries on HBO that he was in, I hear he was excellent in that as well 🙂

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