We all know, theoretically, that actors are not the same people as their best-known characters. And yet, we watch, say, Game Of Thrones’ murder-giant The Mountain read love poems or sniveling sociopath Joffrey’s real-life counterpart quit acting to help the work of charitable organizations and the cognitive dissonance is nevertheless striking.
In this same vein, it’s endearingly strange to watch Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, a man whose face immediately calls to mind incest and boy-crippling, narrate Game Of Thrones final season trailer with good-natured enthusiasm.
Coster-Waldau introduces his Instagram video by holding a phone camera too close to his face, saying “the trailer’s just dropped and—” before flipping the view to a distorted frame of a laptop playing the clip as if caught off guard by his own timing. He then comments on what’s in front of him, the glare on his MacBook showing his own silhouette as the lens absently wavers around the video, zooming in and out at random.
The entire dad-like approach continues beyond the technical details. Coster-Waldau sees Jon and Daenerys in one shot and adds an approving noise, comments on a shot of Missandei and Grey Worm kissing (“kiss,” he remarks), makes a smooching noise at Cersei Lannister, sings “Ar-ee-yaa!” when the character comes on screen, and utters the rest of the cast’s fictional names as they appear.
The real highlight, though, is Coster-Waldau echoing the line spoken by his own character. In no other version of this new trailer will you get to hear Jaime Lannister say “I intend to keep that promise” over video of Jaime Lannister saying “I intend to keep that promise.”
Unlike his character, Coster-Waldau seems happy, warm, and altogether excited about the future. Considering that there’s a good chance we’ll soon see the actor’s character beheaded, burned alive, or, who knows, stabbed to death by his little brother in Game Of Thrones’ final season, a pleasant video like this is a nice way to ensure viewers’ hearts can be broken on a metatextual level now, too.
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