The end of Game of Thrones season 7 left us with a lot of cliffhangers, but the one that concerned me most was what happened to Tormund Giantsbane and Beric Dondarrion after the Night King collapsed a part of the Wall at Eastwatch. Would Tormund escape to make giant red-haired monster babies with Brienne?
Thanks to the season 8 trailer, we now know that Tormund and Beric did indeed survive. Kristofer Hivju, who plays Tormund, was never concerned. “I assumed that they wouldn’t give Tormund an offscreen death,” he told the Radio Times. Could have told us sooner!
Anyways, now the question becomes,
will we still get the giant babies just how do Beric and Tormund survive the destruction of the Wall? On that point Hivju was predictably cryptic. “There will be a resolution of some kind [to the cliffhanger],” he promised. “But as to how Tormund reappears… well, I’d watch.” Well, I wasn’t planning on it, but I guess I will now.
Still, the fan response to Tormund’s near-death experience touched the actor:
I felt a lot of love when that happened. When people were anxious about what’s going to happen. And there have been many moments throughout the season where I have been close to death. The Hound saved me out on the lake. And I think many people thought that this is where Tormund’s going under.
Even Hivju himself got caught up in the hype:
Every time we get new scripts it’s been like, ‘Am I dying on that page?’ No. That page? No. That page? No. End of the script? OK! But for season eight, it’s a different story…
First, I think we can all admit that we’d do the same thing in his place. Second, is Hivju implying that he got to the end of a season 8 script to find that Tormund didn’t make it? Say it ain’t so.
On the other hand, Richard Dormer (Beric Dondarrion) is just happy to be in season 8 at all, considering that his character perished much earlier in George R.R. Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire books.
I’m very happy. Because it’s different in the books: Beric gives his life, he gives the kiss of life to Lady Stoneheart. And he dies. And then she becomes the leader of the Brotherhood. Thankfully, we did it differently from the books and so I’ve still got a career.
Not everyone is glad that the show omitted Lady Stoneheart, but that’s a debate for another time.
Regarding the show’s ending, Dormer answered like a true Game of Thrones professional:
It’s been great – I really loved it, and I love what [executive producers] Dan and David have done. The arc, the journey, every character. But personally speaking, I love my journey the most.
Hard to blame the guy. Hopefully Dondarrion can find some peace when all is said and done. Game of Thrones season 8 premieres April 14.