Actress Carie Van Houten has called Game of Thrones fans "ungrateful" for their harsh reception of the final season. Van Houten played the mysterious sorceress Melisandre in the HBO series, which aired its big finale one year ago. Recently, she argued that fans crossed a line with the way they criticized the series finale.
Many fans were left severely disappointed in the way Game of Thrones ended — and in the last season, or two, or three. Still, in a new interview with Insider, Van Houten said that the criticism of the show got out of hand, saying that people were only disappointed "because everything before that was so good. So it feels a little bit ungrateful." She added that, in many cases, fans were let down because the ending didn't "go exactly how you anticipated."
As for herself, Van Houten said: "I loved the ending." In particular, she praised the decision to make Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright) the king at the end, saying the "randomness" of it reminded her of the first season.
"People sometimes take it too far and get too personal, but I can't take that seriously. I just thought it's people being really emotional about this show. It just always amazes me how people can go behind their computer and just type 'die b— die,' I'm fascinated by that human psyche," she added. "That's beyond fandom. That's extremism. That's scary."
One of the unique things about the Game of Thrones finale backlash, as many critics have pointed out, is that it was aimed almost exclusively at the writers — David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, while the cast, crew and other creators were spared. However, Van Houten did not think this was fair either, saying that the two showrunners are "f—ing great."
At the heart of many criticisms of Game of Thrones was the complaint that the show was shortened too much to resolve all of its plot lines, and this can only be blamed on Benioff and Weiss. The author of the source material George R. R. Martin told Entertainment Tonight that both he and HBO would have been happy to see the show go on for a few more seasons, but Benioff and Weiss "wanted a life, I guess." The two were supposed to write a new Star Wars trilogy for Disney, which was canceled in October, and are now working for Netflix, though on what exactly has never been announced.
Because it is the one-year anniversary of the series finale, fans have been busily reliving their disappointment on social media lately, and many were sad to hear Van Houten trying to admonish them. Since her character was revealed to be incredibly old with a magically-sustained life, many were hoping she might make an appearance in the upcoming prequel series House of the Dragon, as she is one of the very few characters who could do so.