The women reigned in last night’s massive season finale of Game of Thrones. In today’s post-mortem, we dig deeper into the episode with the help of cast interviews and bonus features. There are spoilers galore ahead, as we hear from Lena Headey, Natalie Dormer, Emilia Clarke, and many more on the world-changing events of “The Winds of Winter.”
Cersei shocked everyone by claiming the Iron Throne in the season finale after the suicide of her son the king. Post-finale, Entertainment Weekly talks to Lena Headey about the twists and turns of the episode.
As for Cersei’s motivation in taking the throne, the actress says, “I think part of what happened to her, is a sense of ‘never again will anybody do anything to me that I don’t want to happen.’ This is the end of that.”
But we probably shouldn’t get too comfortable with the notion of Queen Cersei reigning supreme. Even Headey doesn’t think she’s long for the throne. When asked by EW for her prediction, she admits it’s unlikely. “No. Surely not!” she says. “Not a chance in hell. It’s a moment of punctuation in the madness.”
The episode concluded with Daenerys headed for Westeros, with a fleet of ships and Tyrion by her side. The prospect of a reunion with Cersei’s little brother is something Headey is up for. “I’m as excited as anyone to get Cersei and Tyrion back together. It just works. Those two characters are so interesting because there’s so much hate, yet slight respect too. They’d kill each other if ever given the chance.”
There’s more with the new queen at EW, so check out the complete interview over there!
Natalie Dormer discusses her big episode with Harper’s Bazaar today, in a long, personal interview with the magazine. She addresses Margaery’s departure, going up against Cersei and how the High Sparrow played into it.
It seemed an exciting, fitting way to depart. Margaery’s been battling Cersei for the last however many years and she ends up dying on the show not because she didn’t beat Cersei, but because she trusted that someone else—the Sparrow—was handling her. She had the reins taken away from her, from being in control of the situation; the High Sparrow took the reins and it proves that he underestimated Cersei in a way that Margaery never would have. There’s a moment before Margaery and the High Sparrow die when they look at each other and Margaery realizes that Cersei has outplayed him and she’s gonna die because of that. There’s this moment that Jonathan Pryce gives as well; this look on his face when he realizes he’s been outplayed by Cersei. Margaery is a fatality of the High Sparrow underestimating Cersei.
Dormer predicts fans’ reactions to the finale and her fiery death:
I’m sure everyone will be sad. I’d like to think that people will be sad to see the Tyrells unjustly blown to smithereens! [Laughs] As an audience member you spend so much time with these characters, you get to know them very well and to have them so irreverently snatched from you and killed is really harsh. But that’s what real life is and that’s why Game of Thrones is the powerhouse that it is. It’s not scared to take away some of your favorite characters. It’s always been brave, this show.
In the article, Natalie discusses her habit of trying to avoid knowing what happens in storylines other than her own, and she says she didn’t even know the Hound was back until she ran into Rory McCann in the makeup trailer.
Dormer says much more in her in-depth profile at Harper’s Bazaar so be sure to check that one out.
Discussing her exit with EW, Natalie explains she actually had wanted to check out of Game of Thrones earlier, because of other work.
I requested [while making season 5 that showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss] release me from working on the show earlier than usual so I could do another project, and they ended up phoning me — and that was The Call. But I got it six months ahead of normal. They were like, “We weren’t going to tell you this for a few more months, but we’re not going to release you now, so you can’t do that job you really want to do and we’re really sorry about that. But on the bright side, we are going to release you proper in the not-so-distant future.” It was good news, bad news — no you can’t do this, but don’t worry, you’re going to have lots more opportunities very soon.
Emilia Clarke checks in with Entertainment Weekly as well, and assesses where Daenerys stands after her breathtaking departure from Meereen.
I’ve got ships, I’ve got manpower, I’ve got dragons that breath fire, and I apparently cannot be killed. I don’t even have an attractive man who wants to take his shirt off anywhere near me now, so there are no distractions. Though we have yet to see [Peter Dinklage] without his clothes on. The only thing missing is Jorah. He’s gotta come back. I said I can’t rule the Seven Kingdoms without him … But as with Game of Thrones, you know when your character is looking good, that’s when you know you’re not safe. Because [the writers are] all, “Oh, do you like her? We’ll kill her!
On the idea of Dany meeting up (and hooking up?) with Jon Snow, Emilia says she doesn’t know.
Those rumors have never been substantiated within the Game of Thrones circle. It’s never been said. So I don’t know. I could kill him. He could kill me. He could be dead before we even meet. I could be dead before we even meet. Arya could kill us both! You never know! Anything’s possible. All I know is winter is coming … and I’m bringing the heat!
Another young woman who knocked it out of the park in “The Winds of Winter” was Bella Ramsey, who has been stealing scenes handily in season 6 as Lyanna Mormont.
“From the moment she came in, she was on it: she was professional, and she was just brilliant,” Liam Cunningham says while speaking with The Hollywood Reporter. “There’s an old adage about how actors should never work with children or animals, but that’s B.S. When kids are as good as this young lady is, it’s a joy to play opposite. She was absolutely amazing. When somebody comes in and is that good, it makes your job that much easier.”
The actor further explains what he thinks his character Davos sees in the 10 year old Lady of Bear Island. “I think he appreciates the nobility of Lyanna. She’s a leader. He likes decent leaders. Jon is one, and Stannis was, for a long time. You can tell Lyanna Mormont has fantastic leadership qualities, and has a good and decent core. It’s what he thinks the world needs: decency, honesty and a sense of fair play.”
As for Lyanna Mormont’s future on the show, that’s unclear. Cunningham says to THR, “We don’t know what’s coming in the next season or if she’ll be part of whatever happens next; we just don’t know.”
Fingers crossed we’ll see more of Lady Mormont as there’s more work to be done in the North in season 7!
In the season finale edition of Inside the Episode, D.B. Weiss and David Benioff discuss the wildfire plot, Tommen’s suicide, Cersei’s big move, Jon and Sansa’s conflict, the King in the North scene, Arya’s dark path, Tyrion the Hand, and Daenerys heading home to Westeros.
Kit Harington, Sophie Turner and Liam Cunningham discuss the Stark dynamic and the King in the North scene from last night’s episode.
Maisie Williams explains why Arya came for Walder Frey first when she returned to Westeros and talks about his bloody death in the finale.
We go inside the last moments of the characters in the sept in this video, see the creation of the wildfire explosion that annihilated so many characters in the season finale. Benioff and Weiss, Bryan Cogman, Dave Hill, director Miguel Sapochnik, Lena Headey, Natalie Dormer, Eugene Simon, Jonathan Pryce and more share their thoughts:
Today, we also have our last episode of “The Game Revealed” for the season, going behind the making of “Battle of the Bastards” and “The Winds of Winter.” The video includes interview segments with director Miguel Sapochnik, Benioff and Weiss (who penned both episodes), Kit Harington, Iwan Rheon, Natalie Dormer, Finn Jones, Emilia Clarke, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and more. The cast and crew discuss the creation of the Battle of the Bastards, Ramsay and Jon’s brawl, Ramsay’s death-by-dog, the explosion of the sept of Baelor, mutilating Loras, the conclusion of the Tower of Joy, the King in the North, the terrifying prospect of Cersei as queen, the fiery Battle for Meereen, and Daenerys’ new armada closing out the season.