As the dust settles on the very last episode ever for HBO’s Game of Thrones, Kit Harington speaks out about Daenerys Targaryen and her descent into madness. The actor also reveals he was initially a little concerned at the viewers perspective about the fate of two prominent female characters.
SPOILER ALERT: This article discusses Episode 6 (titled “The Iron Throne”) of HBO’s Game of Thrones Season 8. Please proceed with caution if you have not yet viewed this episode and wish to avoid spoilers.
The final season of HBO’s Game of Thrones started with two women vying for the Iron Throne. Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey) had ended up ruling the seven kingdoms thanks to the deaths of her husband and children over the course of the epic fantasy series. Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) believed she was destined to rule Westeros because her family had been usurped from their position by Cersei’s husband, Robert Baratheon (Mark Addy). Both women could legitimately claim their position regarding the Iron Throne.
By Episode 5 of the final season fo Game of Thrones, Daenerys had successfully taken King’s Landing. However, the concern was the fact that she razed the city after it surrendered and killed many innocent people in the process.
During the course of Episode 6 of Season 8 of Game of Thrones, Jon Snow ended up killing Daenerys after her descent into madness was becoming too hard to ignore. While it seemed this would pave the way for Jon, a secret Targaryen and rightful heir to the throne, to rule the seven kingdoms, by the time the Season 8 finale episode had concluded, Brandon Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright) was the surprise winner.
For many women watching the series, the fact that Cersei and Daenerys had the Iron Throne snatched from their grasp and the ultimate winner was a man, left a bad taste in their mouths.
It was a concern also felt by Kit Harington, and he recently spoke to Entertainment Weekly about it.
“One of my worries with this is we have Cersei and Dany, two leading women, who fall,” Harington said.
However, he did believe that what happened to both of them was actually the right decision, regardless of gender.
“The justification is: Just because they’re women, why should they be the goodies? They’re the most interesting characters in the show. And that’s what Thrones has always done. You can’t just say the strong women are going to end up the good people. Dany is not a good person. It’s going to open up discussion but there’s nothing done in this show that isn’t truthful to the characters. And when have you ever seen a woman play a dictator?”
Harington also pointed out the fact that Daenerys had done many awful things in the lead up to the Season 8 finale; things that could be traced much further back than just the last season of Game of Thrones.
“If you track her story all the way back, she does some terrible things. She crucifies people. She burns people alive. This has been building. So, we have to say to the audience: ‘You’re in denial about this woman as well. You knew something was wrong. You’re culpable, you cheered her on.'”
Episode 6 was the final episode of HBO’s Game of Thrones Season 8 and the series overall. HBO is currently in production on a prequel series set in the same universe as Game of Thrones. However, no release date has yet been announced for this new series.