The series finale of Game of Thrones airs on HBO this Sunday, but for some characters, the end already came. That’s true of Cersei Lannister, who died in last week’s penultimate episode, caught in the wrath of Daenerys and her dragon. Cersei’s death is one of many controversial things about that episode, and about this season in general. But there’s one person who is totally fine with how things wrapped up for the show’s villainess: Lena Headey.
Headey didn’t immediately arrive at contentedness with Cersei’s end, however. In a new interview with Entertainment Weekly, the actress who has played the evil Lannister queen for eight seasons said her initial reaction to the news of Cersei’s death was “mixed.”
“I wanted her to have some big piece or fight with somebody,” Headey told EW. However, a chat with her co-star and onscreen brother Nikolaj Coster-Waldau assuaged some of her concerns. “The more we talked about it the more it seemed like the perfect end for her. [Cersei and Jaime] came into the world together and now they leave together.”
The arc of Cersei’s twin, Jaime, has been among the most contentious for fans. Jaime began the series as a bad guy who was in an incestuous relationship with his sister. But as the show progressed, his many layers were revealed. We learned that Jaime once sacrificed his good name to save the realm from Mad King Aerys Targaryen, and last season he left Cersei behind for what seemed like forever. Except… it wasn’t. In episode four, after finally sleeping with his other love Brienne, he ultimately gave into his impulses and returned to King’s Landing to die with Cersei.
“I think the biggest surprise is he came back for her,” Headey told EW. “Cersei realizes just how she loves him and just how much he loves her. It’s the most authentic connection she’s ever had. Ultimately they belong together.”
That sweet perspective on a relationship riddled with rape and emotional abuse seems like a strange read, but we guess we’ll defer to the people who lived inside these characters for so long.