Warning: Big Season Five Spoilers
There were some pretty obvious shockers in Game of Thrones‘ fifth season: little Shireen Baratheon sacrificed by her own father, Sansa raped by psychotic Ramsay Bolton and – most of all – the beloved John Snow betrayed and killed by his own Night’s Watch.
The HBO series already has a fearsome reputation for being ruthless, and it’s not stopping anytime soon. The show regularly culls its main characters with no warning or sympathy – so is it TV’s most brutal show ever?
Here’s what the cast told IGN:
Alfie Allen (Theon Greyjoy/Reek): “Season 5’s most jaw-dropping moment for me was Myrcella’s death. I just thought it was beautiful that Jamie finally got some sort of love, and then the second he actually gets it, she dies in front of his eyes!”
Iwan Rheon (Ramsey Bolton): “As an actor, the rape of Sansa was horrific to have to do. That’s the darkness that this show has, and it’s brutal. I was dreading it and had a very sleepless night before we shot that.”
John Bradley (Samwell Tarly): “It was genuinely a horrible moment to read [John Snow’s death], because dramatically, and in terms of the show’s logic, it’s heartbreaking. I always say when [the cast] say goodbye to characters, we feel it harder than anybody else, saying goodbye to actors that we love as well.”
Liam Cunningham (Ser Davos): “People look at certain extraordinary moments like Shireen and the rape of Sansa and it’s easy to look at those in isolation and say, ‘There’s no need for this’. The bottom line is, this is a show that’s written for grown-ups by grown-ups. The violence in this show is disgusting and appalling, because violence is disgusting and appalling. And the whole philosophy is, we’re going to show you interesting characters and you’ll understand the complexity of these morally grey characters. Arya’s a serial killer and she’s a fucking role model! She has a list of people she’s going to murder and people go, ‘I want to be like Arya!’ It’s kind of bizarre but it’s lovely to be on that rollercoaster.”
Get ready for for season six. It looks like it’s going to be an even bigger shocker.