Gethin Anthony (Renly Baratheon) weighs in on the ending of Game of Thrones. “I would have finished things a little bit differently.”
Gethin Anthony shone briefly but brightly on Game of Thrones as Renly Baratheon, the younger brother of King Robert Baratheon and one of the main claimants to his throne after he died. Renly himself died in one of the show’s most mind-blowing death scenes up to that date: speared through the back by a shadow monster created by his older brother Stannis and brought into the world by the Red Woman Melisandre:
Up to this point, Game of Thrones had kept itself more or less grounded in the real world, give or take a baby dragon here and a White Walker there, so seeing a full-on magic murder was a shock to the system. “I love the way I went,” Anthony told Metro. “I think to be killed off by George Martin and Dan [Weiss] and David [Benioff] on the television show is kind of a badge of honour.”
That said, there were a lot of iconic deaths on the show since then, and some part of Anthony can’t help but feel like he missed out. “I still am jealous of some of the other deaths that went on because there were so many amazing ones. And looking at the books, actually I think Renly got a pretty good representation in the show because basically there are so many characters and you can always want more.”
But I’ve always said Harry Lloyd’s death as Viserys [Targaryen], the golden crown, getting that gold poured on his head, that was such a cool death. The Red Wedding’s amazing, obviously, there were loads of good ones. But I’m happy with the way [Renly] went. it was amazing to act with Michelle Fairley (Catelyn Stark) just before dying.
Yeah, it’s hard to go wrong with Viserys’ crowning or the Red Wedding. Other deaths that with me are Oberyn Martell’s squishy ending in King’s Landing, Stannis burning his own daughter alive at the stake, and Olenna Tyrell being the queen of sass right up until her moment of death by poison. Gethin is in excellent company.
That said, there were definitely deaths that didn’t go over as well with the fans, as per example some of the curtain calls in the eighth and final season of the show, which got a ton of blowback. “I enjoyed it, I really did,” Gethin said of the last stretch. “I think to end a story world like that is nigh on impossible. It’s a testament to how good the show was, and how good the books are, of course, that people cared that much, that they really are invested.
[I]f I had been in charge, I would have finished things a little bit differently but that’s because I think every one of us could come up with a different ending.
Maybe he’ll someday he’ll share his idea. I, for one, would probably read a book full of the cast members’ ideas for how they would have ended things. You could include all the folk Gethin worked with in his scenes, like Gwendoline Christie (Brienne), Natalie Dormer (Margaery Tyrell) and Finn Jones (Loras Tyrell), all of whom Gethin remembers fondly: “It was a really lovely gang in the second year that I was really chuffed to be a part of before being dismissed by the narrative! [Gwendoline] actually organised my birthday that year on the basis that her character would and she throws a great party! I felt a bit spoilt, really, getting to work with Gwen.”
You can next see Anthony in Knuckledust, about an investigation into a massacre at an underground fight club that costars fellow Game of Thrones alum Kate Dickie (Lysa Arryn).
“Again, I’m in an action movie where I don’t get to do much fighting,” Anthony said. “I have been a bit like this before with Thrones – I had a sword made and did I ever get to swing it? No!’
Knuckledust released in the U.K. on December 11.