Praise the Seven – Game of Thrones Season Four begins April 7. Time Out meets key cast members from the lustiest, bloodiest, best-written show on television – and speculates how their characters would spend their time in an obscure corner of Westeros known as Melbourne.
Isaac Hempstead-Wright: Bran Stark
The crippled son of Ned Stark has been making his way north, helped by Jojen and Meera Reed. At the end of season three, he passes under the wall and into the Haunted Forest, towards the threat of the White Walkers…
Isaac, you were just ten when you began on Game of Thrones. Did your parents let you watch it?
When you’re on set and there are dead bodies and a decapitated head and buckets of blood, the violence is debunked, so when you watch the show and see someone’s head cut off you know there’s a guy behind the block pumping the blood. The sex was more of a problem, but my mum just gave me equally inappropriate talks on it.
Who is your favourite character on the show?
I’ve come to like Joffrey. Not as a person, as a character. It’s fascinating to see a teenager given absolute power and corrupted absolutely. It’s a great way of symbolising that many leaders in our world are just kids given power.
If Melbourne were Westeros, Bran Stark would go to... Eltham North Adventure Playground
The only physical activity Bran has is when his mind enters his direwolf. But this inclusive park has a special Liberty Swing designed to take kids in wheelchairs ($10 for key). Wattletree Rd, Eltham North.
Aidan Gillen: Petyr Baelish ('Littlefinger')
Littlefinger – the Machiavellian, brothelkeeping former Master of Coin – has a big season ahead of him. Now a High Lord, he is bound for the Eyrie to woo Lysa Tully…
Aidan, is it nice to work on a show where there’s no one star?
Yeah, it is. I’ve worked on four TV series like that: The Wire, Queer as Folk, Game of Thrones and Love/Hate in Ireland. I come from a theatre background and ensemble playing is what you do. Even to have a tiny part in something that’s good is better than having a lead part in something that’s not good.
Are you proud that the term ‘sexposition’ was coined for a Game of Thrones scene you were in, narrating backstory to two women having sex?
Was it really only coined in the last few years? That scene was in Series One and lasted about seven minutes. I’m not certain I’m a fan of either exposition or sexposition, but you’ve got to get the backstory in there sometime. Yeah, I don’t need to have sex in my face all the time!
If Melbourne were Westeros, Petyr Baelish would go to... Club X
Littlefinger would love a private dance – if only to explain how she was doing it wrong. 216 Swanston St, Melbourne.
Kit Harrington: Jon Snow
Ned Stark’s bastard has forsaken his Wildling lover and returned to his place on the Wall. Will his comrades still trust him? And what of Mance Rayder’s invading army – not to mention the White Walkers?
Kit, Jon has lost so many friends and family. How does he keep going?
He’s a very resilient human being. He’s not like a modern man. If it was me I’d be crying, I’d be a wreck, I’d probably turn to alcohol, if I’d lost all of my family and broken up with my girlfriend, the only person I’d ever loved. But these people who live in this world aren’t like that.
Do you have a response to those hilarious people who like to shout out Ygritte’s catchphrase, “You know nothing, Jon Snow”?
I still haven’t found one. It’s a very good insult because A. I don’t know what the fuck it means, and B. there’s no comeback to it. Unless you go, “yeah, I do,” which is rubbish.
If Melbourne were Westeros, Jon would go to... Ski and Board Surrey
It’s cold on the Wall, and Jon Snow would happily pick up a few jackets, thermals, gloves and beanies from here. 449 Canterbury Rd, Surrey Hills.
Gwendoline Christie: Brienne of Tarth
Sworn to serve of Catelyn Stark, ridiculed swordswoman Brienne kept her vow to deliver Jaime Lannister back to King’s Landing – earning Jaime’s respect. Now that their journey is over, will they draw even closer?…
Gwendoline, there are not many roles for six foot tall women out there, are there?
I’m not interested in roles for tall women, I’m interested in roles for women. The reason I love the role it is has real depth and requires many different physical skills, and I’m lucky enough to play this extraordinary part.
How did you feel about your bathtub scene last season with Nikolaj [Coster-Waldau]? Because there is some debate over nudity in Game of Thrones.
Brienne and Jaime have a relationship born out of a slow, deepening respect for one another. It isn’t sexual, it’s rather lovely. So I felt the bathtub scene had the pair of them being in an emotional space represented by the water, and I didn’t feel it was focused on nudity. It was about the opening up of two human beings.
If Melbourne were Westeros, Brienne of Tarth would go to… Victorian Roller Derby League
Brienne’s size, agility and hardiness would make her a natural at the high-speed, high-adrenaline sport of roller derby. Factory 64, Oakover Rd, Preston.
Maisie Williams: Arya Stark
She thought she’d be reunited with her family, but the Red Wedding ended all that. Now Arya is travelling with Sandor ‘The Hound’ Clegane, and only one thing keeps her going: the thought of bloody vengeance…
Maisie, Arya’s relationship with the Hound has changed – you no longer hate each other.
They’re by no means friends but they’re kind of looking out for each other. I think they’re learning from each other, and they each have traits the other needs. Arya’s got the innocence in order to trick people, and the Hound’s got the pure brutality to get the job done.
We heard you got kicked out of school – why?
My school was not very accepting that I’d go off and film [Game of Thrones]. We had a polite conversation where they asked me to leave. To them I was just going off and having a laugh, which isn’t fair because it was hard work! So now I’m at performing arts college, which is much more encouraging.
If Melbourne were Westeros, Arya Stark would go to... The Three Seas Psychology Group
Arya packs some serious rage. She should definitely consider an anger management course. 520 Camberwell Rd, Camberwell.
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau: Jaime Lannister
Incestuously involved with his evil sister Queen Cersei, the ‘Kingslayer’ has lost his sword hand, but gained his humanity as he formed a bond with Brienne of Tarth…
Nikolaj, at the beginning of the first season Jaime pushes a kid out of window, but now he’s likeable – what is it like walking that tightrope?
We all do that as human beings. One part of us knows the right thing to do, but our actions constantly betray us. When you look at Jaime you know he is conflicted. Also, when he’s defined as the swordsman then loses his hand, it’s surprising, both to watch and for me as an actor.
Of the twins Cersei and Jaime, Cersei is the more spiteful. Do you think women are crueller than men?
I have two teenage daughters and it’s very different the way girls and boys are. Boys will beat each other up, but the cruelty between girls is unbelievable!
If Melbourne were Westeros, Jaime Lannister would go to… Melbourne Fencing Centre
Since getting his hand cut off, Jaime has had to build up his left-handed skills, and this fencing club has classes three days a week. 31-33 Strathalbyne St, Kew East.
Game of Thrones season four screens on Showcase from Mon Apr 7.