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24th May 2019

Maisie Williams explains what she would change about Arya’s story in Game of Thrones Season 8

After killing the Night King in the Battle of Winterfell, Arya Stark's arc as one of the fiercest killers in Westeros was complete but one name evaded her

Paul Moore

We’d have killed for this

As always, if you haven’t seen the Game of Thrones finale, consider this to be your spoiler alert warning.

“Brown eyes, blue eyes, green eyes. Eyes you’ll shut forever” – Melisandre.

As the Battle of Winterfell approached a crucial stage, this old prophecy The Red Woman said to Arya began to take on an extra significance as the deadliest killer in Westeros finally understood what it meant.

It was Arya’s destiny to kill the Night King and while we’ve still got plenty of questions about the White Walkers and the Season 8 finale, there’s no denying that the scene in the Winterfell Godswood was dramatic.

The army of the dead fell and in many ways, Arya was the perfect person to land the fatal blow.

After witnessing Ned’s execution, Arya was a character that was consumed by vengeance, and the destruction of House Stark at The Red Wedding only added to this.

She also learned from some of the best fighters and tacticians around – Ned Stark, Syrio Forel, The Hound, Jaqen H’ghar, Tywin Lannister – so it seemed fitting.

Some of the people on her kill list were murdered in exceptional style – the names of Ser Meryn Trant and Walder Frey spring to mind – but as Daenerys burned King’s Landing to the ground, one question remained.

Would Arya be the person to close Cersei’s green eyes forever?

Ultimately, her conversation with The Hound was a massive turning point as Sandor Clegane made her see that a life of vengeance is no life at all.

After fleeing King’s Landing and beginning her adventure to discover whatever lands lie west of Westeros, the arc of Maisie Williams’ character is fairly complete but there’s one thing that she would have loved to see in Season 8, more scenes with Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey).

In an interview with EW, Williams said that: “I just wanted to be on set with Lena again, she’s good fun. And I wanted Arya to kill Cersei even if it means [Arya] dies too. Even up to the point when Cersei’s with Jaime I thought, ‘He’s going to whip off his face’ and they’re both going to die. I thought that’s what Arya’s drive has been.”

It appears that Lena Headey felt the exact same way because while she did admit that her death scene had a certain poetic weight, she still wanted to share more scenes with Williams.

“I lived that fantasy until I read the script,” Headey said. “There were chunky scenes and it was nothing that I had dreamt about. It was a bit of come down and you have to accept that it wasn’t to be. There is something poetic about the way it all happens in the end with her and Jaime.”

For Game of Thrones fans, their watch ends when the behind the scenes documentary, Game of Thrones: The Last Watch, airs at 2am and 9pm on 27 May on Sky Atlantic.