It was a dark storyline for Jon Snow on last Sunday’s Game of Thrones. Series star Kit Harrington talked about the brutal decision of his character and how it affected him as an actor — in an interview with Entertainment Weekly.
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There’s a great juxtaposition there from when [in season 2] Jon’s captured Ygritte and he knows he should kill her but he can’t do it because he’s too good of a person. He had that moment again here. He’s thinking: ‘Can I kill a man in cold blood?’ And this time he does it. That’s a big change for Jon.
When Thrones filmed the scene last year, reports about ISIS beheading prisoners were all over the web and Harrington admits that pretending to behead a prisoner made him feel uncomfortable.
It felt really dark because of the current news, what was going on in the news at the time. And I’m doing this on camera. It really didn’t sit well.
You can’t shy away from horror in drama and the things that you see on the news ever day. But to have Jon doing it—whatever the right or wrong reasons he’s doing it—this is a character I love and he’s very good in this story, and to have him committing this murder in cold blood, that for me was the most controversial bit this season.
Game of Thrones airs Sundays at 9PM on HBO. Watch a promo for the next episode “Sons of the Harpy” below: