There will be no Game of Thrones this weekend because, even in Westeros, they need a break from the bloodshed. You’ll have to settle for HBO’s Normal Heart or, better yet, the Mad Men mid-season finale. In the meantime, however, Game of Thrones‘ showrunners Dan Weiss and David Benioff gave an interview to EW to ensure that the fires continue to remain stoked for the big showdown between Prince Oberyn and The Mountain.
Imagine the best possible fight sequence. Then double it. That’s what Benioff and Weiss are teasing, via EW:
“It’s one of the best — if not the best — combat scenes we’ve done so far,” Weiss said. “It’s not just people hacking at each other with spears and swords. It’s the culmination of 20 years of anger and hatred and thirst for vengeance coming to a head in this amazing set piece that [stunt coordinator Paul Herbert and swordmaster C.C. Smiff] have put together. The fight delivers beyond our expectations.”
And it’s not a fight sequence they just slapped together. They didn’t just get two guys and throw them in the ring and hand them a couple of swords. This is gonna be the epic culmination of years of narrative planning:
“It’s one of those fights that from the very beginning of the process of planning the show before season one we knew would be a high point if done properly,” Weiss said. “And it’s a real challenge because The Mountain is The Mountain — you need to find an enormous human being who can also deliver what you need on physical front. And you need an Oberyn who delivers what you need as an actor and pull off the extremely strenuous side of that fight, which we shot over several days. We were lucky to find Pedro Pascal for Oberyn, who gives such a stunning, fun, and dangerous performance. And Hafþór for The Mountain is a truly unusual specimen — I believe he’s the third-strongest man in the world and a former basketball player, so he knows how to move. To see somebody who is 6′ 9″ and moving the way he does in person is a surreal sight to behold.”
I’m sure the book readers are Mr. Burnsings their fingers over the prospect of the match, while the rest of us are just like, “Oh f**k. What’s coming? What are they going to do NOW?” They’re going to have a tough time topping last night’s Fargo and last Sunday’s Mad Men for early contender for the year’s best episode, but I suspect if anyone can do top them, it’s Benioff, Weiss, and Game of Thrones.