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Comic-Con 2016: Games of Thrones

This Season has been a battle.

As any Game of Thrones fan knows, quite a few characters bit the dust this season. Three were at the panel – Kristian Nairn (Hodor), Faye Marsay (the Waif), Iwan Rheon (Ramsay Bolton).

David Benioff  (who created the show with D.B. Weiss) recalls speaking with writer George R.R. Martin three or four years ago and finding out the real meaning of the giant Hodor’s name. “That’s when something comic became tragic,” he said.

Nairn was touched by how people reacted to Hodor’s death. “I really didn’t expect the reaction to be so overwhelming,” he said, mentioning all the doorstops that people made with the character’s face on them. “I never expected the outpouring of emotion. But I think Hodor would be proud of the way he died.”

But the death of Ramsay had the opposite reaction, if the cheers from my living room were any measure. Rheon doesn’t believe his character was a psychopath. “I thought he was a bit fun,” he said. “The guy’s had a tough upbringing, looking for his father’s love and recognition all his life.”

Ramsay’s death will affect Sansa’s character in the future. “Sana has really become a leader in her own right,” explained Sophie Turner. “In the scene where Ramsey is killed by the dogs, we wanted to accentuate where she looks away, then back to show a passion for the blood. Right now, we’re not sure if she’ll be a real leader or go sadistic.”

Marsay (who in real life looks older than her character) talked more about fight training then the bloody death of her character. “I spent a month training with Maisie Williams (Arya),” she said. When asked whom she’d like to see on the Iron Throne, Marsay didn’t hesitate. “I have to say Arya. If I don’t, she’ll probably beat me up with a stick.” (Or cut off her face?)

There was also plenty of chatter about Jon Snow, now that we know Eddard Stark was not his father, and his mother was Lyanna Stark, Eddard’s sister. But, as Isaac Hempstead Wright (Bran) pointed out, we don’t know for sure that Rhaenys Targaryen is Jon’s true father (R+L-J), a least yet.

“Bran knows he’s been shown Jon’s mother for a reason, and I’m sure he’ll tell Jon,” said Wright. “But I don’t know what he’ll do with it.”

At the end of the season, Sansa and Jon reunited for one of the bloodiest battles ever filmed. Sansa kept from Jon that she had asked Littlefinger for aide. “She’s not sure that Jon is capable of leading the north,” admitted Turner. “He doesn’t have the intellect, knowledge and experience she has, but she knows he has the morals to make the right choices.”

When others on the panel started asking if Jon and Sansa, who we now know aren’t brother and sister but cousins, could ever get together, Turner was livid.

“Jon and Sansa grew up together!” she said, shocked. “David and D.B. (Weiss), I swear if you make anything happen, I will kill you.”

Oh goodie – more deaths!

Patricia Morris Buckley – Sr. Staff Writer

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