The beginning of 2020 marked the start of a new decade and a new era in television. It is the post-Game of Thrones era, a world where the groundbreaking series no longer airs new episodes. Fantasy shows continue to flourish, and streaming services launch left and right, and there will even (eventually) be a House of the Dragon series on HBO. But the original show that Stark built is gone. But that doesn't mean the way it ended has lessened with time. Actress Emilia Clarke's 2020 quotes about Game Of Thrones show that, for some, the final season will haunt them for years.
Clarke had a harder path than most. Her character, Daenerys Targaryen, had been secretly slated to go mad in the final season the entire time, a character development no one saw fit to inform her of until that last season. Worse, her death turned out to be the final "shocking demise" in a series famous for them. How hard is it to make it nearly to the end, and then be stabbed in a shocking turn of events?
When the show aired last spring, most of the cast tried to stay quiet, not wanting to wade into what was already a contentious situation. When a subset of fans reacted badly to the final episode twists, it was for the best for the stars to stay out of it.
But a year later, with time and distance, Clarke admits there were parts of the finale that bothered her.
In a recent interview in The Sunday Times, Clarke confessed she was annoyed by something that has been bothering fans ever since the finale.
I really felt for her. And yeah, was I annoyed that Jon Snow didn't have to deal with something? He got away with murder — literally.
Clarke isn't wrong. Fans have been asking why Daenerys' general Greyworm doesn't just step up and kill Jon Snow the first chance he gets. Instead, the Starks come out winners. Bran becomes Lord of the Six Kingdoms, Sansa becomes The Queen In The North, and Jon Snow gets to live free with the wildlings north of the Wall.
Clarke also said that she tried to consider how fans would feel seeing the events play out, even though she was diplomatic about it at the time.
I knew how I felt when I first read it, and I tried, at every turn, not to consider too much what other people might say. But I did always consider what the fans might think — because we did it for them, and they were the ones who made us successful, so... it's just polite, isn't it?
Perhaps George R.R. Martin's Winds of Winter novel will help assuage those feelings. Meanwhile, HBO's House of the Dragon remains on track to debut in 2022.