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‘Game of Thrones’ Showrunners Breakdown That Shocking Finale Death Scene

Photo: HBO/Game of Thrones

Warning: This article is dark and it is definitely full of spoilers!  DO NOT read on if you have not watched the Season 7 finale of Game of Thrones!

“The lone wolf dies but the pack survives.”

It seems like we just started season 7 of Game of Thrones but, just like that, in the blink of a dragon’s icy blue eye, the finale is over!  What a crazy episode!  This season has been filled with twist, turns and unexpected reveals and the finale episode was no exception.

One of the more shocking moments happened at Winterfell where tensions had been mounting between the Stark sisters, Sansa (played by Sophie Turner) and Arya (played by Maisie Williams).  It seemed that Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish (played by Aidan Gillen) was manipulating the sisters, causing them to turn against each other, however, in the end, the Starks got the last laugh and Littlefinger met his highly-anticipated demise!

In a dramatic scene, Arya is called before Sansa, Lady of Winterfell with a full house audience in the room to watch.  It seems that Sansa is going to sentence Arya to death for murder and treason but, in a shocking turn of events when she speaks the charges, instead of saying Arya’s name, she calls out Lord Baelish.  The entire room turns to look at Littlefinger.  Arya does so with an accomplished smirk on her face.

Much to Littlefinger’s bewilderment, Sansa lists specific instances where he has betrayed the Stark family, mainly murdering their aunt Lysa Arryn and conspiring with the Lannisters to kill Jon Arryn.  And, not to mention holding a knife to Ned Stark’s throat, which Bran revealed thus sealing the deal on Littlefinger’s betrayal.

As Littlefinger tried to plea for his life,  Sansa makes her ruling against him and finds him guilty of all charges.  He bends the knee to Sansa for a final plea and Arya (who is undoubtedly the most dangerous person in this entire series) steps up and savagely slits his throat as the rest of the room sits in silence.

This was a moment that many had been waiting to see for a long time and, it’s finally come.  Littlefinger messed with the wrong family and the Stark sisters saw that he got what was coming to him.  Showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss spoke with Entertainment Weekly about the shocking character’s death.  Benioff commented on how so much of Littlefinger’s qualities bloomed from Gillen’s interpretation of the character:

“Littlefinger is a much different character than we initially imagined, and the bulk of the credit for that goes to Aidan [Gillen]. He’s just a phenomenal actor and a great one to spend time with. We loved having Littlefinger along for the ride, but he f—ed with the wrong girls.”

Nobody betrays the Stark family and, even though we saw this moment coming for a long time, we were certainly shocked at the scene.  It was a definite surprise in last night’s episode.  Weiss commented further on Gillen’s performance, specifically in that final scene:

“I would echo that there’s such a beautiful strangeness to his performance and it’s almost all coming from what he brings to the character. He almost turns Littlefinger into a mystical embodiment of will-to-power and thriving on chaos. There’s something impenetrable to everything he does. It’s like you keep peeling away the skins and there’s never an end to the masks. He’s been such a pleasure to work with and so consistently elevates everything he does. But I was so happy with his last performance on the show. We think people will get some good gasps out of the scene.”

On a show with so many deaths, it’s a challenge to make a scene like that stand out but, Littlefinger’s death will go down in Game of Thrones history as one of the most notable.  Benioff offers some insight into why that might be.  Littlefinger’s death was a true testament to his character – cowardly:

“It was one of the harder death calls we had to make. Relatively speaking, he’s a minor character if you look at his screen time. The fact that Littlefinger looms so large when people talk about the show, and when we think about the show, it’s really a credit to Aidan. Every scene he’s in manages to make you think about Littlefinger. And when he’s at the center of a scene — like his final scene in the finale — he’s completely mesmerizing. We’ve had a lot of death scenes on this show and this is one of the great ones. Diana Rigg [as Olenna Tyrell] was so true to her character in the end, and Littlefinger was so true to his character — in his own cowardly, horrible way.”

And now we wait and wait and wait until the final season of Game of Thrones returns to find out exactly how this shocking turn of events will impact Winterfell.  What did you think of Littlefinger’s death scene?  Were you expecting it to happen that way?  Were you expecting it at all?  Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

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