Game of Thrones’ Yara responds to how viewers were “thwacked round the face” by Daenerys’ dark turn

Gemma Whelan, who played Yara Greyjoy, says that her "jaw dropped" when she read about Daenerys' (ahem) character development

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*Warning: spoilers for Game of Thrones season eight*

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The ending to Game of Thrones season eight was met with a wrath more fiery than Drogon on a bad day.

The polarising final episodes saw Daenerys Targaryen (played by Emilia Clarke) go full Mad Queen, burning King’s Landing to the ground and slaughtering thousands — before Jon Snow (Kit Harington) stabbed her in the heart, paving the way for his brother Bran (Isaac Hempstead-Wright) to ascend to the throne.

However, it seems that not everyone hated the fantasy epic’s ending. In an interview with RadioTimes.com at the South Bank Show Awards on Sunday, Gemma Whelan (who played Yara Greyjoy) said that the finale provided “the perfect circle” to the series.

“I loved it, I thought it was great,” she said of the finale. “What beautiful storytelling, like, that’s the perfect circle. What better way to end it than someone who didn’t want power and who set out to be someone who wasn’t ever gonna make someone of himself.”

Asked what she thought of Daenerys’ dark turn, Whelan said: “I know. She went sideways, didn’t she? I know, when I read that my jaw dropped, I was quite, you know, it was a bold choice.”

Was the change in Daenerys too sudden? “I don’t know really. I loved it. I liked that things moved pacily. The other complaint people have is that this season dragged, so how can you win? Great that it went on at a lick and how exciting that we all kind of got thwacked round the face with it.”

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