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Lena Headey: Game of Thrones’ Season 6 Finale Battle Was ‘Meant to Be Worse’

Warning: spoilers ahead!

Cersei Lannister loves that she’s in power. Lena Headey, who plays the now-queen of Westeros on HBO’s hit Games of Thrones, opened up about her character’s ruthless attack in King’s Landing, which went down during the season 6 finale, The Winds of Winter.

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“I was grinning [reading the script]. Everyone is going to be aghast and thrilled and annoyed they’re on Cersei’s side for a minute,” Headey, 42, told Entertainment Weekly.

Lena Headey as Cersai Lannister in ‘Game of Thrones.’ HBO

“I couldn’t believe it, obviously. I was really shocked. I read it, like, nine times, like, ‘You’re joking!'” she added. “Then I’m left to wonder who’s going to take her down. She may only be there for a second. You do think, What the fk comes next? Then we start again to play that game we all play each season: Who’s going to be on the Iron Throne next?”

As seen by viewers — or those who were spoiled on social media — Cersei killed hundreds in a fiery bloodbath not unlike a modern-day terrorist bombing, including Margaery Tyrell (Natalie Dormer), the High Sparrow (Jonathan Pryce) and Ser Loras Tyrell (Finn Jones). As for Septa Unella (Hannah Waddingham), Cersei tortures her former tormenter in a dungeon.

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“It’s so filthy. It’s so great. Everybody’s witnessed what happened with the two of them,” Headey said of Septa. “I don’t think people will be able to help going, ‘Yes!’ But it’s so depraved, it’s brilliant. The scene was meant to be worse, but they couldn’t do it. This is like the tame version. It’s pretty bad still, though. I’d take being exploded in the Sept over that any day.”


Jaime Lannister’s incestuous twin made sure that her son, King Tommen Baratheon, was not present when she set the Sept on fire. Despite the precaution, however, a distraught Tommen killed himself after learning about the attack.

“She gets rid of all her enemies — that she knows of, anyway. Then there’s that moment where she goes to see dead Tommen and she thinks, Ah, well, I’ll [take the crown.] It’s so wrong,” Headey said. “I think part of what happened to her is a sense of ‘never again will anybody do anything to me that I don’t want to happen.’ This is the end of that.”

Headey doesn’t think that Cersei’s ruling will last long, however. (Neither do we!) “Not a chance in hell. It’s a moment of punctuation in the madness,” she told EW.

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In fact, she joked that a certain Mother of Dragons might take her down. In Sunday’s episode, Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) and her fleet were making their way across the sea to eventually arrive in King’s Landing and overtake the throne.

“I got goosebumps reading, ‘The ships are coming.’ They keep teasing us every season and I don’t know what’s going to happen because nobody tells you anything,” Headey said. “I have to assume there’s going to be one helluva battle. Who knows? It’s such a mystery.”

If and when that day comes, Headey hopes that Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) or brother Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) kill off Cersei. She added: “I’ve always said that when it happens, as long as it’s kind of glorious and gory and it’s by the right person…”

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