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Peter Dinklage explains why fans hate the Game of Thrones finale

Updated Oct 25th, 2022 2:47PM EDT

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Game of Thrones is one of the most popular, most important, and most influential shows of the 21st century. It is also one of the most divisive shows of all time, due in large part to its controversial final season. Audiences were disappointed, as evidenced by the fairly precipitous dip in ratings on Rotten Tomatoes and on IMDb. It has now been over two and a half years since the finale aired on HBO, but the stars of the show are still answering questions about it. In fact, Peter Dinklage (Tyrion Lannister) addressed the Game of Thrones hate at length in an interview earlier this month.

People still hate the Game of Thrones finale

The New York Times recently sat down with Dinklage to discuss his new movie, Cyrano. Game of Thrones inevitably came up during the interview, and Dinklage made his feelings clear.

“They wanted the pretty white people to ride off into the sunset together,” he joked. “By the way, it’s fiction. There’s dragons in it. Move on.”

Dinklage then added that the show’s ability to subvert viewers’ expectations was one of its strengths. He noted that when people would approach him on the street, they’d want to know who was going to end up on the throne. In his opinion, the show was about so much more than that:

One of my favorite moments was when the dragon burned the throne because it sort of just killed that whole conversation, which is really irreverent and kind of brilliant on behalf of the show’s creators: ‘Shut up, it’s not about that.’ They constantly did that, where you thought one thing and they delivered another. Everybody had their own stories going on while watching that show, but nobody’s was as good as what the show delivered, I think.

As for the ending of Game of Thrones, Dinklage thinks that the hate is more about viewers being “angry at us for breaking up with them” than about the story:

We were going off the air and they didn’t know what to do with their Sunday nights anymore. They wanted more, so they backlashed about that. We had to end when we did, because what the show was really good at was breaking preconceived notions: Villains became heroes, and heroes became villains. If you know your history, when you track the progress of tyrants, they don’t start off as tyrants. I’m talking about, spoiler alert, what happened at the end of Game of Thrones with that character change. It’s gradual, and I loved how power corrupted these people. What happens to your moral compass when you get a taste of power? Human beings are complicated characters, you know?

The future of Game of Thrones

Agree or disagree, it’s fascinating to get a nuanced take from one of the show’s main characters. Meanwhile, despite the backlash, HBO isn’t giving up on Game of Thrones. Multiple spinoffs are currently in the works, and the first, House of the Dragon, is set to debut in 2022.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.