The cast of Game of Thrones took the stage at San Diego Comic-Con 2019, and although the series is over, the actors had plenty to share, especially as the panel’s narrator–Entertainment Weekly’s James Hibberd–didn’t hesitate to ask tough questions about the controversial final season.
The panel included Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister), Liam Cunningham (Davos Seaworth), Jacob Anderson (Grey Worm), Maisie Williams (Arya Stark), John Bradley (Samwell Tarly), Conleth Hill (Varys), and Isaac Hempstead-Wright (Bran Stark).
Hibberd opened with a banger, asking Isaac what his reign as King Bran the Broken is like.
“I can’t imagine his government is a barrel of laughs,” Hempstead-Wright said. “I think it must be quite serious. And I guess for all intents and purposes, Westeros is now a surveillance state, with Bran aware of everything everyone is doing.” It’s nice to know Hempstead-Wright shares the opinion of the many fans who have speculated about how Bran might use his powers as king.
Meanwhile, what would King Bran do if he did manage to locate and take control of the runaway dragon, Drogon?
“Burn a couple of cities down, go back and get the revenge,” Hempstead-Wright joked.
Later during the panel, Hibberd raised the issue of the “evil Bran theory”–that Bran let events unfold as they did, despite the massive loss of life, so that he would wind up on the throne at the end.
“I don’t think Bran knows, per se, exactly what’s going to happen in the future–he’s not a fortune teller,” Hempstead-Wright explained. “He’s got the entirety of the past at his fingerprints, but his vision of the future is slightly cloudier. That’s my excuse for why Bran didn’t say anything. But I think it’s quite cool that it’s left slightly ambiguous and you can read into it.”
“I think that’s one of the cleverest things about the ending, is it doesn’t conclude everything very neatly,” the actor continued.
Coster-Waldau addressed the backlash to Season 8 directly. “It’s gonna piss you off no matter what, because it’s the end,” the actor said. “But at the end of the day, it’s absolutely fine–if you hated the ending, if you loved it, that’s great. Just don’t call people names.”
Waldau addressed his ending directly, as well. “I thought it was a great ending,” the actor said. “I thought it was perfect for that character, ending in the arms of Cersei–it made sense to me.” Members of the audience disagreed, judging by the scattered boos that emerged in Comic-Con’s Hall H.
“That’s just my opinion,” Waldau replied, not without a sense of humor.
As for Arya Stark, actress Maisie Williams has her own theories about what’s going on “west of Westeros”–and opinions about the memes surrounding her character’s ending.
I’m sure she’s having a wonderful time, like Dora the Explorer, minus the bob,” Williams laughed. Of course, Hibberd followed up with the obvious question: Why didn’t Bran simply tell Arya what’s west of Westeros?
“That was my favorite meme actually,” Williams said. “It’s like, ‘What’s west of Westeros? No one knows!’ and then Bran’s there like, ‘Are you kidding me?'”
This story is developing–check back soon for more!