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SAN DIEGO — Game of Thrones returned to Comic-Con’s Hall H on Friday afternoon, trotting out series co-creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, author George R. R. Martin and seven members of the sprawling cast.
And in lieu of announcing a premiere date or dropping a boatload of casting news, like last year, HBO opened the panel with a highlight montage set to Boyz II Men’s “Yesterday.” Every gruesome death in the series was hilariously recapped while the nostalgic slow-jam played in the background. Some of the more beloved characters were saved for the end, when the soundtrack switched to something a little more sincere. (Watch it below.)
There were, in fact, several deceased characters in the room. Red Wedding victims Michelle Fairley and Richard Madden joined remaining stars Peter Dinklage, Kit Harington, Rose Leslie, Emilia Clarke and John Bradley to rehash the third season’s bloody ninth episode that lit Twitter on fire after killing off Catelyn and Robb Stark.
“When we read the books, we knew we just wanted to get to this scene and do this holy shit moment justice, that throw the book across the room moment,” said Weiss.
Martin, who experience the first wave of backlash back when A Storm of Swords was first published in 2000, admitted that his plan to avoid the debate over “The Rains of Castamere” was not a great success.
“I’ve discovered that there are no countries without televisions — there’s no escaping it,” he said. “I figured I might as well just bunker down in Santa Fe and weather the storm. I did the same thing 12 years ago when people threw their books into the fire place and swore they’d never read another word of mine again.”
Benioff was quick to call out Fairley and Madden’s performances helping them fully realize the scene.
“So much of it is about the faces of the characters and not about the dialogue,” explained Benioff, “just the look on Michelle’s face when she sees the chain mail under Roose Bolton’s sleeve.”
“There was one bit where they actually had the music [playing],” Fairley said of the grueling shoot. “There was a key change in the music, and it was just like someone walked over your grave. It gave you a chill. And that is the moment David and Dan wanted.”
And as a gentle reminder to all that even long-dead characters on Game of Thrones are still a part of the family, Jason Momoa rushed the stage during a particularly serious explanation to hug Clarke and yell at Martin for writing him out of the series in the first book.
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