The One Thing That Seems to Upset Emilia Clarke Most About the ‘Game of Thrones’ Finale

Game of Thrones has, at last, come to an end. As fans everywhere take to the internet –  expressing dissatisfaction regarding the critically deemed “so-so” conclusion to an epic saga – the show continues to lose the status it retained for nearly a decade.

Emilia Clarke, the woman famous for portraying Daenerys Targaryen,exists at the core of the backlash. From those who feel her turn to darkness was unfounded to others who find her ending simply uninspired, the “Mad Queen” has lost a great deal of love she once claimed the rights to.

Emilia Clarke
Emilia Clarke | Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for The MS Society

While Emilia Clarke is reportedly satisfied with her narrative conclusion, one consequence of the epic finale does seem to trouble the young actress. Though rising to fame on the back of the HBO phenomenon, her character has made quite the adjustment as of late – an adjustment that has led to one major, and unavoidable consequence.

Emilia Clarke does not want Daenerys to be remembered as the “Mad Queen” from ‘Game of Thrones’

During an interview with The New Yorker, Emilia Clarke sat down to discuss Game of Thrones, her character’s narrative arc and conclusion, and what it has meant to be part of such a cultural phenomenon.

Clarke explained that, while understanding her character’s turn to darkness, she does not like the “Mad Queen” title. Clarke, referencing the vulnerability inherent to her final scene, stated:

“It’s not that I wanted to show her as “mad,” because I really don’t like that word. I don’t enjoy fans calling me “the Mad Queen.” But she is so far gone in grief, in trauma, and in pain. And yet our brains are fascinating in the way that they find a fast route to feel O.K., whether you’re relying on a substance or you’re mildly deluded.”

The New Yorker 

Emilia Clarke explains that she always “wanted to show that softer side of Daenerys,” for she is more than her final actions. She does not like being labeled the “Mad Queen,” for it fails to account for the troubles and hurdles that catalyzed the act. The problem: many fans feel her turn was under-developed; thus, she has become the Mad Queen as a result of the final season’s failure to paint her transition appropriately.

As time passes, let’s hope, for Emilia Clarke’s sake, that fans remember the many colors that contribute to Daenerys’ personality – the Mad Queen only being one piece of a “textured” character, as the actress explained herself.

Emilia Clarke had difficulty coping with her character’s turn to madness in ‘Game of Thrones’

Emilia Clarke, when she found out the fate of her character, even went around asking her friends and relatives how they felt about Daenerys: did they like her, did they think she was nice, etc.

It’s clear that the actress battled with her character’s turn to madness, as she had come to identify with the strong and empowered woman – the one always satisfying fans – for several seasons.

Though sad to accept Daenerys’ fate, Clarke explained to The New Yorker:

“Every time I was faced with Daenerys having to do something pretty cold, like a mass killing, it was always with this thought that she’s headed toward her destiny. She’s gone too far to turn back now.”

To all you Daenerys die-hards out there, the actress behind the role knew her destiny but would appreciate if you didn’t reduce her to the “Mad Queen,” for she is so much more than the turn of events that led her to such a fate.