Maisie Williams, Jimmy Fallon
Screenshot: The Tonight Show

Game Of Thrones’ Arya Stark herself, Maisie Williams, continued the HBO series cast’s late-night rounds hyping up the April 14 premiere of the show’s final season on Monday’s Tonight Show. And, hey, that struggling little critical darling needs all the publicity help it can get. See, that was a joke, something that Williams and Jimmy Fallon were clearly in no mood for on Williams’ April 1 appearance. After all, this is serious stuff, what with Arya potentially nearing the end of her quest to tick off all the boxes on her expertly stabby to-do list, and the now 21-year-old actor looking back over a childhood spent very much in the public eye. Reacting to a first-day-of-shooting photo of herself in front of her dressing room door, Williams referred to the 12-year-old her as “a little frog,” and told Fallon that her real-life best-friendship with on-screen sister Sophie Turner gave her the understanding and companionship she’s needed to weather her formative years being spent in the unforgiving limelight.

Moving on to the ticklish question of what she can and can definitely not (under pain of HBO torture) reveal about Game Of Thrones’ final six-episode installment, Williams began her April 1 response by answering Fallon’s presumably safe questions about Arya Stark’s five most significant moments. (Spoilers ahead for anyone who hasn’t seen Game Of Thrones, because, even on April 1 of any particular year, playing tricks on people is completely lame.) Seeing her dad’s head get cut off—sure. Teaming up with sister BFF Sansa to finally dispatch Littlefinger—yeah, that felt good. Revealing that Arya dies in the second episode of this last season? Whoops.

Williams froze. Fallon froze. The April 1 Tonight Show audience gasped, and then seeming stopped breathing as Williams covered her face in her hands and stammered out a plea both for Fallon to edit her career-ending gaffe out of the show and for the audience not to tweet it out, presumably as soon as they walked into the crisp April 1 New York air. Fallon assured Williams that it was okay and attempted to restart the segment with a new applause break, only for the horrified Williams to flee the stage, leaving Fallon flummoxed—flummoxed is the only word—and asking after his devastated guest’s well-being. It was truly a shocking and genuine TV moment that will go down in late-night history, especially should anyone put together an all April 1 compilation of such moments, for some reason.

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