Peter Dinklage: The Game of Thrones ending “offended a lot of people”

Image: Game of Thrones/HBO
Image: Game of Thrones/HBO /

Game of Thrones star Peter Dinklage (Tyrion Lannister) is generally a pretty private person, but he’s been hitting the press trail of late to talk up his new movie Cyrano, where he plays the title role.

Naturally, that also means lots of people are asking him about Game of Thrones. They particularly want to know how he feels about the ending, which upset a lot of people. Many fans still feel burnt by Daenerys Targaryen’s genocidal turn at the end of the series, not to mention Jon Snow’s decision to kill her and Bran Stark being made the Lord of the Seven Six Kingdoms.

The blowback to the finale was everywhere online. According to an interview in The Times, at first Dinklage just tried to avoid discussion of it. “But that was impossible. You’re reminded of it on a daily basis by the fans,” he said. “They had deep knowledge, but if somebody loves something they have their version of it in their head, so we got criticism early.”

"Then, when we were leaving, they criticized again because they didn’t want us to go. Some got angry. But if you appeal to everyone you’re doing something wrong. And we offended a lot of people."

The “people didn’t like the ending because it wasn’t what they wanted” defense

So Dinklage is trotting out a line that we’ve heard a few times from cast members: that people were upset with the ending because it wasn’t the one they wanted. I think there might be something to that (and I generally agree that trying to appeal to everyone isn’t a good way to make art), but it doesn’t tell the whole story; speaking for myself, it wasn’t that the show ended that upset me, but how it ended, about which many long-winded editorials have been written.

That said, I don’t blame Dinklage for being a little dismissive here. Game of Thrones was a job for him — a job that he was deeply involved with, but still a job — and it was several years ago; he’s moved on. He has no obligation to do a deep reading of Game of Thrones season 8 just because random fans ask him questions.

Also, when you have fans reminding you “on a daily bases” that they didn’t like this thing that you poured your heart and soul into and demanding that you account for why it didn’t satisfy them, the natural human reaction is not to take a step back, parse the legitimate criticism from the bad faith whining, and seriously consider the shortcomings of the project, especially if you have a career and a family and a million other things to do with your time. The natural reaction is to write these people off and try and get on with your life, because at the end of the day, the fact that the last gig you had wasn’t perfect just isn’t that big a deal.

We’ll see if what the Game of Thrones fan discourse is like when House of the Dragon airs on HBO later this year. And you can see Dinklage in Cyrano in theaters now.

Next. Peter Dinklage: Game of Thrones ending should’ve been “no surprise”. dark

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h/t Insider