We’d waited a long time for this Game of Thrones reunion, and finally it arrived: Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie) met up in “No One,” and found themselves on different sides. The scene played played out brilliantly, with two damaged people who instinctively recognize the best in each other having to bury their feelings in order to serve opposing loyalties. With Jaime with his Lannisters laying siege to the man Brienne wanted to ally herself with, tensions were high. None of the potential drama was lost on Coster-Waldau in an interview with Entertainment Weekly.
It’s a great scene. These characters are so much about holding their cards so close to their chest and they don’t want to reveal how they’re feeling. But we know there’s history between them, that this is more than two knights meeting. But they would never acknowledge that.
Christie also was also jazzed to film a scene she knew fans had been waiting for:
I was excited. It was really fun to be with Nikolaj again, and I thought the way of which their reunion happens is not really expected. I just loved that it was so formal, because within the confines of such formality, and having to negotiate with each other, there are so many other stories begging to be told in those moments. There’s a slow process of creeping familiarity among two people who haven’t been together for a long time; it was allowed to build. And I love that Brienne asserts her intelligence and her newfound mind of strategy and negotiates with Jaime and gets the outcome she wants – he allows her safe passage to go in and negotiate. It wasn’t cliched in any way.
Is there romance in Jaime and Brienne’s future? “No One” was penned by showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss, and they used foul-mouthed Bronn to suggest how surely the two of them would want to bed each other, since everybody else wants to bed them. Coster-Waldau weighed in on that:
(Bronn) tells us what the audience suspects. It’s a great way to get all that stuff into the audience’s head before the scene because then there’s this added subtext. Jaime is always about Cersei and what he can do to help her and how to achieve whatever she wants. And for Brienne, it’s the same – she has an oath to Catelyn Stark. She’s extremely strong willed and has her honor and has to do the right thing always. Sometimes, with both of them, you just want go, ‘For godssake, let it go for a one second. What about what you want?’ They never listen to themselves. And what I love about the end of this scene is there’s some heartbreak. Because, once again, they were close. But are they ever gonna be able to talk about something other than someone else’s agenda?
While Coster-Waldau obviously relished shooting his scenes with Brienne, his favorite scene in the episode was his character’s slow and agonizing undoing of Edmure Tully (Tobias Menzies) where Jaime unleashes his dark side to win the siege of Riverrun. “The scene was beautifully written,” he said.
It reminds me of the scene in the bathtub, even though it’s very different. You’ve seen Jaime grow into a very skilled negotiator. It’s very relaxed, very conversational, then it turns on, ‘If you don’t do what I want you do to do, you’re going to have to accept that I’m going to kill every person in that castle … I’ll do anything for my sister. And if I have to do horrible things to you and your family, so be it.’ I hope that the audience appreciates it because we’re cheating a little bit – we’re building up to this big battle with Lannister forces and the castle and a siege that’s going to be bloody and crazy. But then, no, it’s not. He resolves it by his intelligence and wit. He’s actually saving a lot of peoples’ lives by using words instead of arrows . . . The character is growing and doesn’t get emotional about it.
Unemotional, huh? What about that wave to Brienne at the end of the episode? Her wave back. Those faces, the faces of two people who fear they will never see one another again.
— The Pixel Factor (@ThePixelFactor) May 17, 2016
Getting back to romance, has Coster-Waldau heard of the budding romance between Brienne and Tormund? According to an interview with IGN, he has, and he’s not pleased.
There was this beautiful image of Brienne and Tormund where they were like Kate and Leo from Titanic. It also seemed to me quite one-sided. I think Tormund is more into it than she is — or maybe I’m getting protective about the Jaime situation. I’m already being jealous on his behalf.
Finally, Coster-Waldau indicated where Jaime wants to go now. Unsurprisingly, he wants to book it back to King’s Landing.
He knows his sister and Tommen are extremely vulnerable. This whole religious uprising, no one saw that coming and it’s just taken over everything. He understands how dangerous a situation it is, and he knows that Cersei is on trial very shortly. Even though the idea is, of course, that [he] would think she’s safe with the Mountain fighting for it, he’s seen enough of the High Sparrow not to trust him.
With this week’s episode probably spending all of its time in the North, we probably won’t see Jaime return to King’s Landing, assuming he does, until Episode 10.