Lena Headey Wanted a Better Death for Cersei in Game of Thrones Season 8

AmusedCerseiSmell that, Game of Thrones fans? That’s the scent of dissatisfaction around the realm. While some people really liked the finale, unfortunately not everyone was satisfied – and that’s OK! While the show has been dead for barely a month, it has not stopped the cavalcade of discussion a show of its caliber has always been successful at inspiring. While for many, that will mean endless fan speculation, cheering, complaining, contemplation, and more (it does!), it also means that sometimes the actors or those behind the scenes might have a few thoughts of their own from time to time. In an interview with The Guardian, quoth Lena Headey (Cersei Lannister) herself: “I will say I wanted a better death.”

Now hold on just a minute, before the tabloids get too carried away with this headline. Lena makes very clear that she is not out on a mission to rewrite the final season, like some million-odd fans, but she wants to point out that as a viewer and a fan herself, she has her own thoughts and opinions on how everything shook out: “No, listen, I invested as a viewer and I have my favourite characters. And I’ve got a few of my own gripes. But I haven’t sat down drunkly with David [Benioff] and Dan [Weiss] yet.”

I mean we’re all fans of the show, even the actors, themselves! So it makes sense to me that one can have their own disagreements with the direction of their character. Still, she acknowledges that even if it had gone differently, it doesn’t mean that the fan response would have been any better. “Obviously you dream of your death. You could go in any way on that show. So I was kind of gutted. But I just think they couldn’t have pleased everyone. No matter what they did, I think there was going to be some big comedown from the climb.”

Next up for Lena are several projects involving her as actor and even director. Most excitingly for GOT fans (are there any of you out there?) is her upcoming short 30 minute piece, The Trap, which will reunite her with fellow former GOT cast member, Michelle Fairley (Catelyn Stark). Check out the rest of the interview to see what else is going on Lena’s life. It looks like Lena Headey has a lot of upcoming projects on the horizon, so I can’t wait to see what she brings to the table next!

84 responses

Jump to (and Always Support) the Bottom

    1. Even aside from it being death by brick, the fact that she was standing there going “I don’t like this I don’t like this I don’t like this” was crazy to me (and hurts, considering it’s my favourite character). When Stannis Baratheon was breaking through the walls she was telling Tommen a bed time story so she could kill him peacefully.

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    2. The brick surfing their bodies did after the brick avalanche and no facial injuries was the real crime. That was some Days of our Lives level BS.

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    3. Yep Lena, we all did. Good to see some of the actors coming forward on this.

      In all honesty, given the outstandingly imaginative and original deaths the books/show is famed for, and the fact D&D stretched Cersei’s storyline out for so long, it must be bitter pill to swallow for Lena and Nicolai that their deaths were so anticlimactic.

      On a positive note.. I’m off to Croatia for ten days next week, can’t wait to check out all the GOT locations 🤗

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    4. Apollo,

      Lena seemed frustrated to me when in multiple previous interviews she said that she was being filmed walking up and down stairs for season 8. I’m sure she appreciates everything and respects the writers, but you can tell she wasn’t too pleased with the way things went for Cersei in the last season.

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    5. I’m more disappointed with her character for the entirety of season 8. She didn’t even have ONE proper conversation. Has anybody else realized that?

      Its sad for me how I felt nothing for my top 3 surviving female characters.

      Daenerys was stabbed and I literally felt nothing.

      I’ve always wanted Sansa to be queen but when she did it was meh because of the stupidity of the council scene and how horribly they tried to make her ‘smart’.

      Cersei’s death scene was meh as well.

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    6. Speaking of controversy, is it true that one of the last scene was intended to be Jon stabbing Khaleesi?? And that they rewrote the ending? Just curious. Could perhaps have made a better ending.

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    7. Yes, Cersei deserved not only a better death but a better ending altogether. She deserved to be the final villain because she was an interesting villain. She was bad but she was also savvy and brave: a true and worthy challenge for the protagonists. I would have loved her to win some victory before going away in the blaze of glory: for instance, she could force her rivals to accept her child as the heir to the throne as Empress Matilda did.

      Instead, this interesting villain we loved to hate so much was pushed aside for the sake of establishing a new, contrived, and boring villain Dany dealing with which became a piece of cake! Deconstionism in a nutshell, LOL.

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    8. Oh give me a break with the whole “respecting the writers” BS. You can respect the writers and NOT like the ending. The ending was garbage. Period. Or at least how we ARRIVED at the ending.

      Stop acting like being honest automatically means disrespect.

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    9. Ulfie:
      Speaking of controversy, is it true that one of the last scene was intended to be Jon stabbing Khaleesi?? And that they rewrote the ending? Just curious. Could perhaps have made a better ending.

      I doubt it, though I can’t really say for sure either.

      It wouldn’t make sense for the last scene of the show to be Jon killing Dany, unless they completely skip the whole rebuilding Westeros part of the story.

      If you’re referring to the read-through on the documentary where it sounds like they say “End of Game of Thrones” right after Jon stabbed Dany, it’s most likely edited to make it seem that way.

      Some of the read-through scenes show certain actors sitting in different places then they were in other parts of the read through. I.E. Conleth Hill was sitting to Lena’s left in one part, and then he was sitting to her right during another.

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    10. Cersei’s death made some feel bad for her. Achieving this feeling after years of hate for this character is not that bad is it?
      But still… in the words of an ozzy: “I would feel bad for Cersei, if she wasn’t Cersei”.

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    11. Mr Derp,

      You forgot to place the ” ” when you wrote rebuilding. This rebuilding of Westeros is a huge fail. History of Westeros had so many kings that became kings not because they were the rightful heirs, but because they had military power.
      Dany was right !
      “The world we need can’t be built by man loyal to the world we have”.
      This rebuild is full of man loyal to the world they had. And of top of that, there is Sansa who perfectly applied the “chaos is a ladder / fight every battle” policy.
      Keep on dreaming Westeros!

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    12. Laura: The actors, the directors, the crew, Ramin, every last person down to the lady selling wee little toasties did a phenomenal job on the final season.

      She was so proud when she was told that she’s well stocked, lol.

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    13. And that’s still quite gently said, which shouldn’t be a surprise. I wouldn’t be shocked if she was absolutely dissatisfied with her character arc after all. It’s not about her dying under the bricks, it’s not a big issue here.

      She simply had barely anything to do this season apart from looking through the window and drinking wine. And when she finally had her opportunity to win the war without loses at her side, she decides to spare the life of the people she hated the most – Tyrion and Daenerys. And… why she does it? No one knows. Does she connect with her “good side”? This was so out of place.

      She’s shaking when she’s dying. Yeah, I have nothing against that too. It kinda shows she always “played” to be a dominant person, when she actually had no courage (like Ramsay) to face death when the time came. That’s actuallt okay. But the rest of Cersei’s season 8 is terrible.

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    14. She should be thankful to Benioff and Weiss because they extended her role and gave her to play complex human, compared to cartoon villain she is in the books.

      And her idea that Arya should’ve killed Cersei with Jaime’s face is horrible.

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    15. Laura,

      Yeah you’re overreacting. Reddit and internet comment trolls dont speak for the fandom. Its been hashed over a million times that sure they could have written some things a little differently, but there was great writing this season. That isn’t the same thing as plot. People confuse writing with plot and they aren’t the same. There was some excellent dialogue this season, and even if some of the plot points werent well recieved by many fans, the execution was incredible.

      I knew going into season 8 that my expectations might not be fullfilled (ie Jon killing the Night King as he should have) but the way they did it I can’t complain…

      Other people have other gripes but it shouldnt compell you to toss the whole season in the trash. Thats just pathetic.

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    16. Ser Brocolli McBrocolliface,

      Level of arrogance and delusion in that post was on Daenerys’ level.

      Personally attacking and laughing at someone for no reason at all because he liked the season?

      D&D’s haters are so bitter they really want to turn every fan site in their pit of depression and misery.

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    17. I am one who thought she had a good ending. After all she had done, she was able to die in Jaime’s arms. It was still tragic and felt just to me.. Lena was able to make me feel a little sorry for her, which is another testament to her power as an actress. I was just sad Lena didn’t get as much screen time in season 8 and she had to spend almost all her time in that window. I understand it though. The story moved up North so we spent most of our time there. But Lena is such a great actress, it was a shame she had to be a supporting actor in season 8, but I understand it.

      On a personal note, I did get my ASOIAF book set for Father’s day, and I’m already into book 1, so my “show only” days are over…. My wife also got me the POP Icy Viserion with the NK…. My ghost took a ride!…it was an awesome father’s day!

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    18. I would love more Cersei in S8 but I’m not sure when and how. New private meeting with Tyrion wouldn’t make much sense. Jaime arrived during chaos so there wasn’t that much time to speak with him.

      Euron was an idiot. I guess one long dialogue scene with Qyburn would be interesting. It seems Cersei trusted him, so I guess she would be honest in front of him.

      Cersei’s death wasn’t epic or dramatic, but I feel that was the idea. Like Tywin’s death. I’m not sure how fans would react if Tywin’s death was D&D’s idea and in the books he had more dramatic death. Cersei’s death was symbolic and I think where D&D really succeded is making you actually root for Cersei to escape at the end. It’s crazy. After everything she has done you want her to escape. How many fantasy stories actually gave you something like that?

      She was so powerless and affraid, the show refused to give viewers any enjoyment in watching Cersei die, like they did with fan service Ramsay’s death. It was complete oposite of fan-service, like a lot of things in S8.

      She died defeated and powerless with Jaime while Red Keep, the symbol of her ambition and power lust crushed on her.

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    19. Ser Brocolli McBrocolliface,

      Who made you king of the fandom to decide which opinion counts? I have been the biggest fangirl after binge watching the first four seasons. I was invested in “hair watch” etc. I have not been on here at all this season because I don’t have anything to say. This season was meh, nothing to write home about, an utter disappointment, except for episode 2. I have not rewatched any of the other episodes because I’d rather spend my time watching paint dry. Believe it or not, Laura and I are part of the fandom. What a letdown by the writers after making us wait that long.

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    20. I’d have liked a final face-off between Sansa and Cersei but oh well. I’m just thankful Cersei wasn’t raped or tortured by the Dragon Queen’s troops before the end.

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    21. Newbietothegame:
      Ser Brocolli McBrocolliface,

      Who made you king of the fandom to decide which opinion counts? I have been the biggest fangirl after binge watching the first four seasons. I was invested in “hair watch” etc. I have not been on here at all this season because I don’t have anything to say. This season was meh, nothing to write home about, an utter disappointment,except for episode 2. I have not rewatched any of the other episodes because I’d rather spend my time watching paint dry. Believe it or not, Laura and I are part of the fandom. What a letdown by the writers after making us wait that long.

      No one gets to decide which opinion is more valid. Because they are all just opinions. Laura started all of it by insulting Jack and those of us that enjoyed the final season. People are allowed to like things with out having their intelligence insulted. Unfortunately, for some reason, it has become “cool” to go online and crap all over things you don’t like.

      No one has ever said people have to like GOT Season 8 and no one has said that people can’t say that they didn’t enjoy it. But why some people feel the need to insult D&D for it, blows my mind. The reason this site has worked so well, is because most of the time, we can have serious discussions about the show and disagree civilly.

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    22. Inga,

      Oh dany was a much more interesting villain. Some who could do much more harm to the world if she had lived. The whole world would have burned.

      Still I agree that cersei deserved better. Not perse episode 5 but what happened before. Why couldn’t we have for instance a wedding between euron and cersei. And misandei being the gift for cersei. And instead of having bronn moving north why not have him being a victim of cersei. And escaped in episode 4 and that’s how he would survive the season. Both were boring in season 8. If they would have been combined it could have been more awesome.

      And I’m wondering. Even when I liked Jaime and cersei together in the end. If it wasn’t better if brienne Jaimes relationship would have been already been last season or in 8×02 and have him die in 3. And cersei dying alone.

      Or why not gave euron threaten cerseis baby in episode 5 and that’s why euron dies by the hand of Jaime.

      I begin to believe that many problems of season 8 could have been avoided if dorne, iron island storyline (euron) and Griff were in the season (many disagree but I really have a feeling that he is a major endgame character in the books and that would make danys turn more believable). I think if that set up were better season 8 would be better. And I think even Lena would have liked it better if she would have died in a earlier season then being in 2 seasons that she didn’t do anything important. I still think season 5 6 and 7 should have been 4 seasons. If they did that season 8 could be just one last season of 6 episodes. But having a better set up.

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    23. Mr Derp,

      Didn’t they stop the read through there so that even the actors didnt know the true ending? Didn’t the actors say that even they don’t know the true ending?

      Iul,

      Yes dany was right, let’s kill 90% of the people on the world disagreeing with you’re worldview. (sarcasm off)

      Her thoughts were dangerous and the first step towards dictatorship.

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    24. This site is becoming a war zone, and not enjoyable at all. If people could simply LET OTHERS HAVE THEIR OWN OPINION without attacking it, that would be great. No one is going to have their minds changed by a pithy comment or insult, trust me. No one. What used to be a community is now a daily divorce court.

      I’m looking at both sides, the haters and the homers. I can’t imagine how this could possibly be admined, so I’m asking everyone to cut the s*** and let people vent or applaud as they like. Believe it or not, it IS possible to disagree with someone and not call them an idiot or question their intelligence or maturity or whatever else you wanna type.

      If that is what WotW is going to dissolve into, that’s the saddest of all cause this used to be THE place! Now? It’s a pummel board.

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    25. Kevin1989,

      I don’t think young griff can solve anything. He is one of main reasons why the books weren’t finished. Too many new elements in the second half of the story would create only more problems for Benioff and Weiss.

      We already have that in the books.

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    26. mau,

      Well depends. If he takes kl at the end of the final. Dorne is there where it supposed to be. Cersei and tyrells will probably be gone. The wall will probably fall at the end of the book. Dany sailing west. Starks in winterfell. (or almost there). Iron Island with dany like the show. I don’t know what euron could be doing in the books at the end of it. Cersei fleeing towards casterly rock. I think Jaime will die in winds. Brienne story will also finish.

      And that way book 7 can be told better then season 7 and 8. It could show Griff in kingslanding as a king in the first part of the book. At the same time the ww invasion is busy in the north. Dany will get a vision of quathe that send her north. She saved the day there. Ww defeated.

      Second part will be the love of Jon and dany after the defeat of the ww. Combined with the truth bomb. And going south towards kings landing. Dany loses her mind because Jon is the true heir but also Griff is Aegon the true heir. She thinks they are lying. Maybe she even finds out Griff is lying and she doesn’t trust Jon. The war is going south and defeat of Griff in the horrible way we saw in episode 5.
      Part 3 defeating dany and what comes after.

      And for me I hope George goes that way. I really wanted to feel conflicted by our heroes dany and Jon going full force on the capital. Even before it happens. It needs to feel as hero against hero. Not dany and Jon against cersei a villain.

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    27. Kevin1989,

      But Young Griff is non-entity. He is not character at all. Just plot device.

      I like this great post about him.

      Young Griff is terrible storytelling. Let’s break this down:

      1. If he wins, he removes the Lannisters, a group every one of our characters have a reason to hate and replaces them with someone they don’t care about either way

      2. He cripples Jon’s arc because being the second living son of Rhaegar changes almost nothing

      3. He removes the conflict point between Jon and Dany because neither have a claim.

      4. He removes the conflict point between Dany and Tyrion because Tyrion is no longer going to be fighting his family

      5. He turns secret Targs into a meme and makes you wonder if Targaryans ever actually die in Westeros

      6. If he is a Blackfyre, he requires a massive amount of exposition for literally no other reason than a surprise twist.

      7. He introduces a pointless conflict when the series has bigger issues to deal with. The Others are gearing up for war, it makes NO sense to play War of the five kings 2: Electric Boogaloo, especially when you need to introduce a whole new character to justify it. He is single handedly going to force the series to extend beyond 7 books. It took two full books just to resolve the last war.

      Young Griff is a terrible idea on every level. From the perspective of story, plot, characters, theme and the simple fact that there are only two books left, he is a mistake.

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    28. Lenas part was totally wasted; I felt so bad for her and her character. This is the queen who destroyed the sept with thousands of deaths. I just don’t think she’d go to her death in tears and denial. That being said, I liked that she died in Jamies arms, tho I much rather him have stayed with Brienne but thats a whole other post

      As for people opinions -I have gotten less judgemental and more thick skined the older I get. Doesn’t bother me one iota if anyone agrees with me or not. What does bother me is insults, flaming, and any thing that hint someone shouldn’t be allowed to share their opinion. Such thing are not necessary; Ive loved the discussions on this site, and found the comments in the posts during this last season very interesting. You can be angry and express that without going after other posters. Just sayin

      People are stressed and angry; its best that we remember we are talking about a fantasy show on tv. Doesn’t mean we shouldn’t care, just put things in perspective and use your energy and anger to go after real injustices.

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    29. Laura: lol I mean I can’t. Jack, you’ve always been a great poster/presence here but your inability to acknowledge what a shitshow this devolved into is just laughable at this point. Are you angling for a job? Maybe they’ll take you and Dee as a bootlicking team of two!

      I come back to this site and feel insane because everywhere else people speak the truth. The actors, the directors, the crew, Ramin, every last person down to the lady selling wee little toasties did a phenomenal job on the final season. The writers DID NOT. If you like what they did, cool I guess? You’re one of those people who probably enjoy soulless Michael Bay films too.

      “…everywhere else people speak the truth” The classic question is, “What is truth?” WE all know it is often subjective, and that one person’s truth is another’s lies. I value others’ opinions, and relish calm, reasoned-out discussions. I often learn from them. But TBH the Season 8/D&D haters mostly don’t respect anyone who finds worth in the season and especially in the writing. Your remarks here are no exception. Vituperation of fans who retain a positive view of the show has been widespread, and it needs to stop. IMO, if ‘fans’ detest the show that much they should get off GoT sites or at least cease poisoning the well for others.

      FWIW, I think most of the whingers who’ve crept out of the woodwork are 17YO boys (nothing against boys, but one can often detect gender by the way people write) who show no patience, no analytical penetration, and at times, no understanding. They just like piling-on and getting attention on a viral topic. That doesn’t mean that D&D critics can’t be smart, reasonable, mature, and civil. But the immaturity of most such posts is maddening. Speaking of maddening, it’s ironic that WotW makes you feel insane. Two days ago I exchanged posts here with someone who actually called me insane and then questioned whether I understood foreshadowing. I was teaching about foreshadowing when he was probably in diapers. The point is, that as educated people we should treat those of opposing opinion with respect. Perhaps even keep an open mind while assessing their explanations. But name-calling is for the playground.

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    30. Laura,

      From FAQ – Moderation Policy

      2. What is the moderation policy when commenting on Watchers On the Wall ?

      WatchersOnTheWall.com has an open commenting policy for the most part, but personal attacks on other commenters are not permitted….

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    31. With regard to Lena, it’s ironic that if she gets an Emmy this season, it will probably be due to her brilliant acting when Cersei and Jaime faced their doom together. She displayed naked vulnerability with him that she would have hidden from some Valonqar.

      Ten Bears:
      Laura,

      From FAQ – Moderation Policy

      2. What is the moderation policy when commenting on Watchers On the Wall ?

      WatchersOnTheWall.com has an open commenting policy for the most part, but personal attacks on other commenters are not permitted….

      Thanks, TB. By the way, you might enjoy this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WlKq4kbOOZQ

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    32. Stark Raven’ Rad,

      I liked that slow realization over the course of the episode that she has lost. There is no more tricks, no ways out. It’s over. When we first saw her in “The Bells” she looked strong and badass. By the end she is completely defeated and powerless.

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    33. mau: She should be thankful to Benioff and Weiss because they extended her role and gave her to play complex human, compared to cartoon villain she is in the books.

      One can be both grateful and disappointed simultaneously. And gratitude doesn’t mean having to sit quietly on the sidelines looking pretty.

      Also, Lena *made* Cersei. Her acting was phenomenal from Season One, Episode One all the way to the end. The difference is, they didn’t give her much to work with at the end. And we the fans are poorer for it.

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    34. JSchmeh: Laura started all of it by insulting Jack and those of us that enjoyed the final season.

      To be fair, in the weeks since the finale many of us who were super disappointed have been attacked too. Told we didn’t watch it enough times, that we didn’t appreciate the complexity and missed the foreshadowing, that we only didn’t like it because what we wanted to happen didn’t happen etc.

      I’ve tried my best to articulate why I was disappointed and stay focused on my own POV, but it has been frustrating to be told I’m wrong a dozen or more times by people who can’t likewise articulate why. I’m actually somewhat jealous of the people who liked it. It would be a lot more fun to spend this time dissecting a bunch of awesomeness.

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    35. ThisGirlHasNoName,

      If it’s any consolation, I’ve read your posts and thought you were very articulate about your concerns. Despite my frustrations about the mud-slinging, it can’t be denied that many of the disappointed fans make excellent points. The season was rushed and compromised as a result. But the vitriol which some people use against others bothers me much more. What a relief that WoTW is still full of (relatively) mature, rational posters, most of whom have been familiar names for years…whichever side of this fence they’re on. It’s still a haven compared to much of the Internet.

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    36. I don’t really care what people think about season 8 but you can try a lot harder to not be dicks to each other. It’s not difficult.

      Consider that your warning. All of you.

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    37. trarecar,

      Laura, I love you for this post lol. But don’t ban yourself. There are still quite a few critical thinkers left. No disrespect to those of different opinion of course. I only wish I could also enjoy the end of the show as they have.

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    38. Cersei didn’t really get a death scene, that was more to satisfy Jaime’s arc. Lena got barely anything to do in the final season. The more I think about it, it’s hard for me to think of one character that D & D really gave a satisfying finish. I did like the end to Jaime and Brienne’s arc, but even then I admit I might have had blinders on because it was my favorite arc of all time and I excused the rushed characterization. I liked the Hound’s death, but hated his reunion with Arya which felt too easy, too Marvel. That’s really it sadly.

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    39. Tensor the Mage, Who To The Best of His Self-Knowledge, Is Not A Bot *Skip* Not A Bot *Skip* Not A Bot... says:

      “The difference is, they didn’t give her much to work with at the end.”

      That’s because Cersei had driven herself into a corner and had no options remaining. It’s the classic fate of hubris, from the ancient Greek myths through to “Macbeth” and on to our own time; her fate mirrors that of our own worst real villain. (In case anyone missed that last point, she dies entombed in the ruins of her Keep, after the wonder weapons have all failed, and an unstoppable aerial and ground assault leaves her with no escape.)

      And, after eight seasons of my enjoying Cersei’s ever-escalating, delightfully watchable awfulness, I’m very sorry that Ms. Headey decided to leave on a low note herself. What other death would she have preferred for Cersei? Killed by some random Northman? Meeting Arya in a dark corridor? Or the fate Cersei gave to Septa Unella, only delivered by a horde of Dothraki screamers? (At least that would have been a parallel to Sansa and Ramsay.)

      It strikes me as unprofessional and ungrateful for an actor to do this to a production company who gave the actor a good role — and steady paycheck! — for years. (I have similar thoughts for Conleth Hill, and I greatly enjoyed watching his version of Varys.)

      “The brick surfing their bodies did after the brick avalanche and no facial injuries was the real crime.”

      They had facial injuries. Recall also we saw them entirely from Tyrion’s perspective; had another character found them, there might’ve been just Jaime’s golden hand and lots of bloody-pulp-covered bricks.

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    40. I’m a bit on the fence regarding Cersei and Jaime’s death to be honest. Overall it doesn’t really bother me to a large degree, and I appreciate the poetry in it, but I can see the argument for it lacking that big climactic punch for such major characters. Especially Cersei as one of the main antagonists of the whole series.

      Although I’m personally fine with her death (and by extension Jaime’s), Cersei’s story in season 8 was underwhelming. She spent most of it interacting with one of the least interesting characters left in the story (Euron) and staring out from the Red Keep. I can see where Lena has some disappointments with how her character’s arc was handled in the end.

      I may have mentioned this before, but if this is indeed pretty close to how she dies in the books, it may work better there because the show has elevated Cersei to a much more prominent role than in the books. i.e. Most book readers that I’m aware of don’t think that Cersei will be one of the last main antagonists in the books, and may not even make it to A Dream of Spring.

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    41. Newbietothegame:
      Ser Brocolli McBrocolliface,

      Who made you king of the fandom to decide which opinion counts? I have been the biggest fangirl after binge watching the first four seasons. I was invested in “hair watch” etc. I have not been on here at all this season because I don’t have anything to say. This season was meh, nothing to write home about, an utter disappointment,except for episode 2. I have not rewatched any of the other episodes because I’d rather spend my time watching paint dry. Believe it or not, Laura and I are part of the fandom. What a letdown by the writers after making us wait that long.

      No one made me king of the fandom but no one made you two queens of the fandom. Youre stating your opinion you hated the season and Im stating my opinion yall are wrong.

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    42. Enharmony1625:

      I may have mentioned this before, but if this is indeed pretty close to how she dies in the books, it may work better there because the show has elevated Cersei to a much more prominent role than in the books. i.e. Most book readers that I’m aware of don’t think that Cersei will be one of the last main antagonists in the books, and may not even make it to A Dream of Spring.

      This is where I think that reading from the character’s perspective (or even from one opposite them) holds a very real advantage. It is impossible to convey the thoughts going through a character’s head without being, well, in the character’s head. Aside from a voice-over which rarely works well (especially in this type of show), and some rare occasions from fabulous ‘face actors’ like Iain Glen, Nikolaj, Maisie, etc., thoughts/feelings from the POV can be much more detailed and nuanced in a novel. Although I like Lena’s Cersei much more than the book character, we will still get the chance to have that inner monologue that is hard to get across on film, even when the visuals are more prominent.

      Or we could just get more Myrrish swamp or something, idk. 😩🤪

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    43. trarecar,

      I’m in complete agreement. It’s reached the point where even people I’d previously thought of as reasonable and intelligent have made personal attacks. This is the *only* fansite I’ve participated in, for the reasons you mentioned, so it’s terribly disappointing.

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    44. Ser Brocolli McBrocolliface,

      I had no problem with Arya killing the Night King; firstly because it was the fulfilment of the Lightbringer creation story, which whether you realise it or not (and whether the writers realised it or not!) had been running since the very first episode. The symbolism of her ‘killing death’ (Arya had said several times that Death was her God) meant she could begin to live again.

      The principal fault with season 8 was that it felt so rushed, especially the second half. The understandable concentration on Dany resulted in other important characters being pushed to the margins, including Cersei. I didn’t have a problem with the manner of her death, but the character certainly deserved better than being reduced to a bit-part.

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    45. Stark Raven’ Rad:
      With regard to Lena, it’s ironic that if she gets an Emmy this season, it will probably be due to her brilliant acting when Cersei and Jaime faced their doom together.She displayed naked vulnerability with him that she would have hidden from some Valonqar.

      But Cersei is the valonqar. Isn’t the whole point of Maggy’s prophecy that Cersei’s own nature and actions would bring her down? The first instance of this was that Cersei murdered her friend by pushing her down a well on the same day as they heard the prophecy, for fear that she might become the ‘younger, more beautiful’. When Cersei was told that valonqar meant ‘little brother’ it added a new dimension of fear to her existing hatred of Tyrion.

      Cersei never feared Sansa was the ‘younger, more beautiful’, but when Margaery Tyrell came on the scene, all of her old fears were revived. It was her pathological hatred of Margaery (coupled with the mistrust of House Tyrell in general, as inherited from Tywin) that brought Cersei (and the governance of the realm) to the state they are in as the books currently stand. Kevan Lannister was repairing the damage, which is why Varys killed him, to ensure Cersei’s madness continues to destabilise Westeros.

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    46. I feel you, Lena. Those “she climbs some stairs and descends some stairs” comments that seemed so hilarious last year take on a whole new meaning now. They should’ve kept the miscarriage scene that she said they’d filmed. Can’t be a bit surprised by her and Conleth’s disappointment with the final season; I’m disappointed for them as well.
      Cersei’s death wasn’t one of my biggest issues, and like King Bran it’s fitting in a certain sense…and they deny you the spectacular death it seems such a character ought to have, with people she’s wronged getting to eaxct revenge upon her. Instead one of our heroes goes berserk and topples part of a building that just happens to crush her too. I suppose it was intentionally anticlimactic. Her role in the season was unusually dull, though, save for the spawning of delightful elephant memes.
      I did find multiple deaths at least partially satisfying/fulfilling, but Cersei’s was meh…she deserved worse and Jaime deserved better. Or he would have, if he’d tried to kill her and get back to Brienne (even though the wounds would’ve gotten him by then anyhow. ><)

      Laura, Newbie, CamelHoarder–y’all couldn’t’ve been more on the money.
      (Tim, huh? Arya killing the NK had nothing to do with Lightbringer…and Cersei was a little brother? Eh?)

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    47. The title of this article should be “Everyone wanted a better death for Cersei”

      And sorry to the person who responds about how perfect and awesome the show version actually was.

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    48. mau,

      I agree with you on point 1. But many big shows and books end a big enemy in the book season before the last one. Look at breaking bad. Gustavo got killed in season 4 and season 5 doesn’t have him. Was that bad writing? For me no because Walter became the bad guy there. Same with got. The last book dany will be the villain not the lannisters.
      2. 3. Depends if he is the real deal. Many think varys is faking it. And dany already got a vision where a mummers farce (so somebody faking it so couldn’t be Jon) is being cheered on by the people probably in kl. And dany needs to defeat him. It’s almost a given in the books that Griff will become king because of that prophecy and its almost certain he is not the real Aegon. So dany and Jon have a better claim. It also make it more reasonable if dany is going mad. She just defeated a pretender with a better claim then her. And now another pretender is rising. How could she believe Jon’s claim now. She will think it has all to do with people don’t wanting to get to her destiny. And they are evil and needed to be stopped.
      4. I don’t think tyrion is that whitewashed in the books. I think he will push dany to westeros with the agenda so she could end cersei. I don’t think he will be conflicted in the books if dany attacks lannisters.
      Another thing to think of it. What if in the books (which I’m almost certain Griff will sit on the throne but the timing seems off) dany arrives first. Decided to help Jon first because of a vision. But only once she arrives north Griff wins against cersei. That way 2 things could happen. The conflict of tyrion would be still there with dany. And 2. Tyrion could still fight his sister if she flee towards cr.
      5. That meme is there already because Griff is in the books. And if he is a pretender nothing is wrong here. It will only up characters like danys motivation and varys character.
      6. True
      7. I disagree. Look at what happen here. The last episodes were heavily critize because danys motives were not realistic. Her turn was not received well because it didn’t have a good ground to stand on. The end episodes were the lowest rated episodes there is because mostly of danys twist. If they would have given her the Griff storyline and a better reason to turn mad (which becoming paranoid because people popping up with a fake claim to the throne) would have received much better. Yes he maybe a plot device for dany. But a very important one, a plot device that could have switched the bad ratings to a more got like ratings. (I already told some who didn’t read the books the version that I think will happen in the books and they stated that they wouldn’t have hated the season that much if that was the way dany would have gone don’t know if that counts for everyone but grrm stated multiple times that Griff was important for endgame)

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    49. Stark Raven’ Rad,

      Agree fully with you.

      Iul,

      There was truth in her words, no denying that. But also her way of getting that done is evil and dictorial. I agree that you should attack the soldiers and the ones taking arms against you. So I had no problem with her ending varys. Afterall he conspire against her back. But the common folk should never be attacks and rooted out if they don’t agree with you. Or convince them or live with it that you are doing the right thing for them even when they don’t understand that.

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    50. Lena is such a lovely reminder that someone can disagree about a tv show and still be civil about it 😉

      Her death didn’t bother me. I can see why people would have loved something more grand though. For me it showed just how gritty and real this show can be. How an entire city getting burned alive was enough to make me stop caring how this other character will die. Even when Arya was literally about to head towards her but Sandor talked some sense into her – while it may have taken away from Cersei’s death (for a lot of viewers), it gave so much to Arya, it made her have more depth than being this one-dimensional person bent on revenge.

      I would have loved more material for Cersei this season, Lena is an amazing actress! But I sort of knew after season 7 that her arc was coming to an end and understood her absence for most of this season.

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    51. Laura: lol I mean I can’t. Jack, you’ve always been a great poster/presence here but your inability to acknowledge what a shitshow this devolved into is just laughable at this point. Are you angling for a job? Maybe they’ll take you and Dee as a bootlicking team of two!

      I come back to this site and feel insane because everywhere else people speak the truth. The actors, the directors, the crew, Ramin, every last person down to the lady selling wee little toasties did a phenomenal job on the final season. The writers DID NOT. If you like what they did, cool I guess? You’re one of those people who probably enjoy soulless Michael Bay films too.

      I used to think this site was “better” than others because of the general level of intelligence of the people who post(ed) here but this place is actually worse than /r/GameofThrones with the absolute delusion of people. Is it that you’re embarrassed you wasted all this time on a show that petered out in such a fashion? You need to justify it by saying the final season was good?

      You can call me ungrateful or say I overreact but how do you think the poop on a platter we got impacts the people who run this site? The anticipation for the prequel couldn’t be lower. I am sure the drop in daily visitors has been a shock and would not have been so steep had D&D not taken the lazy way out and delivered such shoddy scripts. I can’t even imagine what the actors felt like. Well, unless they got good endings like 3 or 4 characters did, I am sure they all felt like Conleth, just didn’t show it. Now we’re slowly but surely starting to hear the real deal (Sapochnick complaining about D&D’s interference on the podcast last week, Lena now).

      Someone ban me from this site so I can never come back k thx bai.

      Intelligence also includes being able to accept others opinions without getting so massively triggered by them lol………just saying.

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    52. Lena is right. Cersei’s death could have packed more of an emotional punch with just a little tweaking here and there. For example:

      + The main scene could start in the same way, with Jaime trying to comfort Cersei as the roof begins collapsing under Drogon’s fire.

      + As the main roof comes down behind Jaime and Cersei, with most of the basement room now open to the sky, you see Drogon spread his wings across the remains of the ceiling in order to “land” as the dragon and Dany spot the couple.

      + Drogon roars. Jaime flinches but doesn’t turn around, instead holding Cersei tighter and repeating “Just look at me. Just look at me. There’s nobody but us”.

      + Jaime is gripping Cersei’s face, but a clearly shaking Cersei still looks past him over his shoulder. The camera could show just part of Cersei’s face, or even just one of her eyes, reflecting the turbulent emotions within.

      + Still perched across the remnants of the ceiling, Drogon moves forward a bit and leans into the room, so that his head is now about just 10 feet diagonally behind Jaime. The dragon begins opening his mouth wide. Jaime feels the heat behind him and briefly flinches again; he knows what’s coming, and it’s actually scaring the hell out of him, but he focuses on Cersei, again saying “There’s nobody but us” or simply “I love you. Remember that. I love you.”

      ++ Optional: Drogon senses that Cersei is pregnant, hesitates, and almost imperceptibly draws back slightly. Perhaps Cersei also has one hand protectively across her belly, something Drogon notices too.

      + Cersei and Dany are making direct eye contact by now. Dany is silent, but triumphant, and her cruel smile matches the dragon’s bared teeth.

      + Cersei decides to refuse to show any fear; still staring back at Dany, her expression changes and hardens. Overcoming her inner terror, she defiantly snarls at Dany “Do it”, then screams “DO IT!”. (Alternatively, she looks directly at Drogon and snarls “Dracarys”, then shouts “DRACARYS!”).

      + Still locking eyes with Cersei, Dany pauses momentarily, then sits upright, adopting the pose of a victorious conqueror; inclining her head while haughtily looking down at Cersei, with a sneer on her face she finally growls “Draaacaaaryyysss”, obviously relishing it.

      + The camera switches to a side-view as you see Drogon incinerate an embracing Jaime and Cersei at point-blank range. (Along with the visual impact, it’s reminiscent of Sarah Connor’s nuclear attack nightmare at the start of Terminator 2 — and yes, it’s a shout-out to one of Lena’s previous roles too).

      + Drogon rears up, raises his head and either roars loudly or unleashes a column of fire upwards into the sky. The sound thunders across the city. In the distance, Jon and Tyrion realise what’s happened. The Queen is dead. Long live the Queen.

      ++ Near the start of the next episode, Tyrion finds his siblings’ bodies in the same way as before, but this time Jaime and Cersei are either Pompeii-style burnt corpses, or there is almost nothing left except a large scorched crater on the ground. Either way, Tyrion is only able to identify his siblings when he sees Jaime’s semi-melted, charred gold hand amidst the ashes. He collapses to the ground and begins crying as before.

      That sort of thing. Just a few brief changes like that would have created a “Cersei death scene” that has a much greater impact and is a more fitting end for the character.

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    53. mau,

      1. That would be called introducing moral ambiguity into the process. There’s none in going against Cersei, who is also destroying herself anyway.

      2-3. No he doesn’t, since beyond being fake, he’s almost certainly not going to make it anywhere near the end of the books, so any tensions between Dany and Jon would only be amplified by the existence of a previous pretender.

      4. This is not a conflict point in the books, where Tyrion is eager for revenge on his family.

      6. Hardly “massive”, and pretenders are a common feature in these kinds of wars, so it makes sense that there’d be one.

      7. It’s not a pointless conflict, it’s the same basic conflict in the books (conquest of the south) with different people.

      Conversely, it also has the virtue of not prolonging Cersei’s existence far past the point of implausibility and in a way that contradicts the whole point of the character.

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    54. Honestly my suspicion here is that a journalist has gone to Lena with a leading question aimed at response to criticism of S8 and she’s just answered by saying she wish she had a better death. Curiously she doesn’t even state what sort of death she wanted either.

      Cersei was never a fighter so dying in battle makes no sense, dying at the hands of Jamie/Tyrion perhaps? I actually felt her death was fitting of the character so perhaps I’m biased.

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    55. Jon Snowed,

      1. She showed steely resolve when preparing to poison herself and Tommen, but was crying over the prospect of dying with a child still in the womb. 2. She went down the stairs in a building that was quickly crumbling all around her. 3. She gave up in the end.

      None of that computes with the Cersei I came to lovingly loathe/loathingly love.

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    56. Mormont:
      Even aside from it being death by brick, the fact that she was standing there going “I don’t like this I don’t like this I don’t like this” was crazy to me (and hurts, considering it’s my favourite character). When Stannis Baratheon was breaking through the walls she was telling Tommen a bed time story so she could kill him peacefully.

      Actually I felt it was very natural, she loved her kids as repeated through the story, With Tommen she didn’t want him to be killed and took a choice no parent would ever want to make to protect him. With the unborn baby she had hope again and didn’t want it taken away, that was soul destroying for her.

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    57. mau:
      She should be thankful to Benioff and Weiss because they extended her role and gave her to play complex human, compared to cartoon villain she is in the books.

      And her idea that Arya should’ve killed Cersei with Jaime’s face is horrible.

      Do we actually know they extended Lena’s role? I’ve seen nothing to support this statement only speculation.

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    58. I actually didn’t mind Cersei’s death scene too much. I think I was overtaken with how emotional that scene was rather than focusing on how it actually happened. However, I can understand that perhaps she may have wanted a more epic death scene like Bella Ramsey’s Lyanna. I think Cersei would have hated her death: underwhelming and undignified – being crushed by bricks. Much like Tywin who died in the privy with a dead prostitute on his bed. Two powerful and formidable characters whose deaths were not as grand as they were in life. I sort of like it actually.

      Also, Lena has been posting behind-the-scenes training for her upcoming film Gunpowder Milkshake (2020 release I believe). The cast looks great so I am intrigued.

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    59. Jon Snowed,

      It obviously can’t be confirmed in the sense that the books don’t exist yet, but it’s not exactly a leap to say that book Cersei is not going to do 95% of what her TV counterpart did. The whole point of the character is that she’s totally incompetent and causes her own downfall — she’s not suddenly going to be turned into a political genius who is getting praised as the second coming of Tywin Lannister.

      The major conflicts being set up for Dany in Westeros are with Euron and Varys-backed fAegon.

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    60. Eddard:
      I’m more disappointed with her character for the entirety of season 8. She didn’t even have ONE proper conversation. Has anybody else realized that?

      Its sad for me how I felt nothing for my top 3 surviving female characters.

      Daenerys was stabbed and I literally felt nothing.

      I’ve always wanted Sansa to be queen but when she did it was meh because of the stupidity of the council scene and how horribly they tried to make her ‘smart’.

      Cersei’s death scene was meh as well.

      I agree on all counts.

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    61. Cersei being underused was one of the very few criticisms I had for season 8, but I thought her death was well done. I found it to be both emotional and poetic for her to die in Jaime’s arms.

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    62. Recently rewatched the series and I can’t help but feel if they had dealt with Cersie first and then the night king it might have made a more satisfying ending – the north would have truly feared Dany while she was up there and the stabbing could take place with Sansa present
      The sad thing is we don’t really get the reaction from the common fold to Dany taking over

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    63. Tim,

      Cersei (in the books) pushed her friend down the well because she said she loved Jaime and asked the witch if she would end up marrying him. That was the ultimate violation to Cersei because Jaime was hers and hers alone. Her friend found that out the hard way. I’m gonna go read that chapter again. You could almost feel the fear & tension that girl must have felt when the witch told her she was gonna die that night & her killer (Cersei) was close. I wish they had filmed that scene shot for shot. Showed that Cersei was a ruthless killer even as a young teen.

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    64. I don’t really disagree with you in principle but if they had done that then very likely they would have had to change the ending which GRRM gave them.

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    65. Aegon the IceDragon:
      Tim,

      Cersei (in the books) pushed her friend down the well because she said she loved Jaime and asked the witch if she would end up marrying him.That was the ultimate violation to Cersei because Jaime was hers and hers alone.Her friend found that out the hard way.I’m gonna go read that chapter again.You could almost feel the fear & tension that girl must have felt when the witch told her she was gonna die that night & her killer (Cersei) was close.I wish they had filmed that scene shot for shot.Showed that Cersei was a ruthless killer even as a young teen.

      In a way those two things are one. At that time Jaime was the one thing which Cersei held dear which she actually had. Rhaegar was the other (at least we are led to believe she loved him – although knowing Cersei she may have loved the power he represented as much as the man himself), but she didn’t have him.

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