Top 10: Best Performances in Game of Thrones – Season 4
Season 4 of “Game of Thrones” ended with a bang on Sunday. Many say that this is one of, if not the, best show on television. I can’t argue with them, especially after what I would consider to be the greatest season of the entire show’s run.
Recently all the Primetime Emmys contenders were announced. So it’s unfortunate that some of these great performances won’t go recognized since they weren’t submitted into competition.
Here’s who could get some recognition: Veteran nominees Peter Dinklage and Emilia Clarke are in of course. Then Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Charles Dance, Natalie Dormer, Maisie Williams, Sophie Turner, and Kit Harington. All of them have been submitted in supporting categories. Pedro Pascal and Diana Rigg have been submitted in gender-respective guest actor categories.
See our Emmy Predictions – HERE
It’s hard to pinpoint the best but here are our top 10 for this season:
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Best Moment: The Trial where the episode closes with Tyrion being betrayed by his former lover Shae and he delivers a very emotional monologue followed by declaring that his trial be a trial by combat. From his conviction, every moment Dinklage was on-screen you felt the emotions that Tyrion was feeling: anger, hopelessness, betrayal.
Best Moment: Any raw emotional outburst from Cersei demands a strong performance from Headey, and she delivers every time. There were multiple occasions of great acting on display from her, a moment that sticks out is in the finale when she stands up to her father revealing the truth about her and Jaime.
Best Moment: There were several moments where Clarke shined, however her performance calls for more subtlety as she tries to become a strong leader. She was also just morally wrong a lot of times in this season. She was often hypocritical, regarding her mercy upon the slaves and to her banishing of Jorah. A moment that stands out is when she is asked to be merciful to the slave-owners and demands that they suffer the same fate as the crucified slaves, another moment may be the finale where she locked her dragons in the tomb, and how devastating that was for her. She is losing control.
Best Moment: Had to be the finale when Arya left him for dead. The Hound has never been a likable character, but McCann has delivered all of the cold and dark aspects of the role and this season we were able to see the humanity in The Hound as he protected and took Arya under his wing only to be left broken on the ground, begging for death, and ultimately abandoned by Arya.
Best Moment: Again, the finale. This entire season we have seen Arya become ruthless and at times brutal with the people who tried to cross her or The Hound. Her development is, and has always been, her leaving behind her sympathy and being strong in the face of death. This was very apparent in the finale where she did what could arguably be considered one of the coldest things she has done. Williams delivers in every close up shot of her contemplative eyes in that scene.
Best Moment: The Trial by Combat. From the beginning Oberyn is a mysterious man. He makes it apparent in the beginning that he simply seeks vengeance. When it comes down the the trial by combat though, it isn’t just how heartbroken we were by the result, but how passionate Oberyn was about getting his sweet revenge. In the moments where he has The Mountain on the ground (God we all wish he just shut up and killed him), we could feel his anger, his devastation, and desire for vengeance.
Best Moment: When she delivers the hell out of a lie to save Littlefinger. Sansa has constantly played the harmless victim since the beginning. We’ve seen Sophie Turner cry and weep for her lost family, and just seem pathetic and sad. But what was impressive was to see how she was able to collect her sorrow and use it to her advantage. Letting us all know that she is now officially in the “game.”
Best Moment: When he must pretend to be Theon Greyjoy and attempts to convince the other soldiers to surrender. Theon has officially gone crazy, the cocky, confident young man we saw in Season 1 is a completely different person now. It was interesting to see how emotional he got when he was trying to “pretend” to be his former self.
Best Moment: There are several instances of great acting on display by Coster-Waldau, but most importantly he plays a character that seems to always be pulling for the “right” thing, but he is still pretty despicable regarding his relationship with Cersei. There has been a dramatic arc between the handsome, cocky man in season one who pushed Bran out the window, to the sympathetic, one-handed man, we see now.
Best Moment: Similar to Coster-Waldau’s performance as Jaime, there were no particular stand out moments. It was just a really well-rounded performance by Christie. It’s easy to see how strong Brienne is physically, but she is a victim of her duty. She nearly wept at the discovery of Arya Stark in the season finale, because she saw a chance at making things right with Catelyn for not being able to protect her. Like many characters, she masks her guilt and sorrow with strength and determination.
11. Rose Leslie as Ygritte
12. Charles Dance as Tywin Lannister
13. Iwan Rheon as Ramsay Snow
14. Kit Harington as Jon Snow
15. Iain Glen as Jorah Mormont