Olivia Cooke Talks About her Toughest Scene to Film in House of the Dragon

credit: House of the Dragon

Game of Thrones established early on that the story it told would never be entirely safe or comfortable for every viewer, but as time went on, it became apparent that there were tough scenes for the actors as well. The tale that George R.R. Martin spun wasn’t bound to be the type that would appeal to the squeamish or those that are easily offended, as the content has always been edgy and more than a little rough. House of the Dragon has continued this trend as the prequel series hasn’t balked from showing several highly questionable scenes and are even kind of hard to watch for those with a strong moral compass. But one particular managed to cause a bit of unease with Olivia Cooke, who plays the part of Alicent Hightower, the current queen and admittedly a complex woman to understand at this time. There are no doubts about where her loyalties lie. By the time the first season had ended, Alicent had made it clear that she would stand by her sons and support the claim of her eldest son, Aegon, as he took the throne following the king’s death. 

credit: House of the Dragon

Her encounter with Aegon concerning the rape of a servant girl was difficult for Olivia

It tends to go without saying that dealing with the idea of rape is difficult to deal with, even in fiction, but it’s also fair to think that there are measures in place to help those who are bothered by such instances. It’s also safe to think that many actors have come to grips with the subjects that they’re attempting to cover with each performance, which is what makes it easier to believe that Cooke had less trouble with the act that her fictional son had committed than the response that she was required to give. The scene in which Alicent confronts her son, Aegon, following the rape of a servant girl saw the queen strike her son forcefully in frustration, which was apparently the toughest scene since she actually had to strike him. It sounds as though Olivia had a real problem with hitting Tom Glynn-Carney, aka Aegon, as hard as she could. But according to reports, Tom told her to go for it simply, and Olivia did. The resounding smack made the scene work, but as Olivia has stated, it’s best that the camera was on Tom at the moment since not only did her hand hurt afterward, but she had to suppress a very awkward laugh that no doubt came from the concern she had for her costar. 

It’s easy to wonder how each actor portrays their given role at times

Many people have gone on to wonder how actors portray certain characters, how they can strike each other, and how they can stomach certain ideologies that they don’t follow in real life. The answer is kind of simple but requires much more explanation quite often. They’re actors, this is what they do, and oftentimes stepping outside of their comfort zone is necessary in order to get the job done. The concern that Olivia shows for her costar make it clear that actors do bond on set and come to care about each other. But there are moments when hits are not pulled; words are ad-libbed and spoken with real emotion, as actors have actively hated one another on set as well. But the general idea is that actors are professionals that will do what they need to in order to make the shot work. Sometimes it involves dealing with a bit of pain, but quite often, such moments are carefully choreographed since injuring actors on set is not the primary goal. 

credit: House of the Dragon

Fans have made it clear who they support in this show

During the GoT days, fans knew who they enjoyed, who they supported, and who they wanted to see more of throughout the show. In the first season, it’s not tough to see who people are supporting, but it does feel as though things might switch back and forth in the next season simply because of the actions prompted by either side. 

Season 2 needs to deliver a quick punch to get things going

One thing that clearly needs to happen when season 2 arrives is a slap to the senses that will get people back on board and fully ready to commit to the series this time around. At this time there are many people wondering if HotD is even worth it since admittedly, things did slow down quite a bit before ramping back up. But if the second season wants to have any chance, it does appear that it will need to up the stakes in a very big way. 

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