Gaz0680

Acting - Season 7 Game of Thrones

22 posts in this topic

Solely based on Season 7, how do you consider the overall acting performances?

Who have been your standouts and why??

Who have been your weaker performers and why??

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For me personally, I would say the overall quality of acting is lower than previous seasons and to me, there hasnt been a lot of standout performances this season.

This is also likely because the show has lost many quality actors like Sean Bean, Charles Dance, Dianna Rigg, Stephen Dillane, etc and most of the remaining cast has a lot less experience.

So far this season, based on what Ive seen:

Liam Cunningham, Peter Dinklage, Aiden Gillen and Lena Headey have been very solid, though not outstanding (as they have been at times in prior seasons).

Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner have done solid jobs with horrible, horrible writing. Sophie is finally becoming more expressive as an actor which is great to see and Maisie, who was always expressive previously, has performed well being more stoic/robotic and less emotional this season in line with how her character is being written/ruined. Both actresses are doing a commendable job with weak material imo.

Kit and Emilia are being given more and better material to work with and have definitely improved and had some good moments this season, but they are still two of the weaker actors among main cast.

Richard Dormer as Beric and Rory McCann have been reliable.

Noone to me has really been outstanding this season.

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In my opinion, Lena Headey is the best actor remaining on the show, by a pretty wide margin.  On the opposite end, Emilia Clarke is by far the worst (of the main cast from opening credits).  Very cringe-worthy.  John Bradley can be brutal sometimes, but I think it's mostly the writing.  He feels like he is someone stuck in a space-time vortex between Westeros and the 21st Century, and doesn't have a clue where he is.  Many characters seem to suffer from this, but I feel that Sam comes off the worst for it.  For (dis)honorable mention I'll also include Nathalie Emmanuel.

For most improved I would probably say Kit Harrington.  Sophie Turner is better than she was even two years ago also.

Liam Cunningham, Peter Dinklage, and Iain Glen are all solid every time I see them on the screen.  They are the rocks that everyone else is acting around.

I agree with Gaz0680 that most of the best actors are gone.  The person I miss the most is Michelle Fairley.

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Despite hating her character, Lena Headey plays Cersei Lannister very well. I would also say that Nikolaj Coster-Waldau is doing a good job of Jaime.

Other high points would be Liam Cunningham as Davos, Conleth Hill as Varys, Rory McCann as the Hound, Kristifor Hivju as Tormund, Iain Glen as Jorah and I do think Kit Harrington has got a lot better as Jon as the show has progressed. Perhaps that is down to the fact Jon's character has become more central and he has good material to work off.

I would disagree with the above comment that Emilia Clarke is the worst actress. If you see her interviewed, you would hardly believe she is the same person; she is giddy, smiley and very comical. To go completely against that and portray a character like Daenerys, who couldn't be less like Emillia Clarke as a person, is fairly impressive.

It's a shame Peter Dinklage has poor material to work with as Tyrion, because he was one of the best actors on the show up until season 5. I blame the writers for Peter Dinklage's acting skills as Tyrion declining.

I always thought Maisie Williams was brilliant as Arya until this season. Perhaps it is the route her story has taken, but her acting is a lot more forced and she speaks in a completely different manner to the old Arya. It's a shame to say it, but I think Sophie Turner as Sansa has been the weakest actress this season. I just feel she can be a bit wooden and expressionless. I know given her storyline and what has happened her character, you could argue that has caused it, but I have always found her to be wooden and awkward right from the series began.

I really can't tell whether I think John Bradley-West is doing a good job as Samwell or not. Some scenes he can be brilliant and others, the sort of bumbling manner can be over done.

 

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30 minutes ago, JordanJH1993 said:

I always thought Maisie Williams was brilliant as Arya until this season. Perhaps it is the route her story has taken, but her acting is a lot more forced and she speaks in a completely different manner to the old Arya. 

It's definitely the route story has taken for Arya. I think they need her acting this way for a reason. 

Maisie is imo doing an amazing job of being a darker, more emotionless Arya. I'm like 95% certain this was a writing choice, not an acting one. 

It appears the writers are taking her down a very dark path. At the moment though, it's hard to tell exactly why Arya is being played this way. The two most obvious explanations are: 

A. She is losing touch with her humanity after all the killing, with her connection to family (esp. Jon) about the only thing that has a chance of pulling her back from the edge. The question is, will she be able to let go of her anger and bloodlust or will it consume her and lead to her death in S8?

B. Arya is not Arya, but is "No one". This "no one" could either be Arya who is a fully fledged Faceless Man and is no one pretending to be Arya Stark OR it could be another Faceless Person (ie the Waif) has already killed Arya Stark and taken her identity.

If either of these scenarios is true (and I'm pretty sure one of them is), then Maisie is doing a brilliant job. If it's a case of she's still meant to be playing essentially the same Arya of season six and earlier but just isn't emoting, then she is doing a poor job.

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Emilia Clarke. I've been invested in all the characters for so long but this was the first season where I paid close attention to her. She has the most expressive face among the cast; don't have to guess at what she's thinking, especially when she's in turmoil. She brings strength and vulnerability to her role. Second would be Lena Headey but only in the scene where she demands to know why the Dornish killed Myrcella. Great acting this season, plus I love the character reunions. 

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Posted (edited)

NCW continues to kick ass as Jaime.  He's the most consistently great actor on the show.  Rory McCann brings the goods as needed as the Hound, strong episode 1 being both sensitive and comedic relief.  Lena isn't as enjoyable to watch as before, but this withdrawn Cersei is probably more a character fault than anything else.  Liam, Peter, Iain, and Conleth are solid.

Emilia had been the weakest actor on the show but I've gotta say, I have been impressed with her acting this season.

Kit is, well, he is what he is.  He has his moments.  The screenwriters don't give him much help.

Pilou has been great in his scenes with Lena and NCW and awful otherwise.

Down years for Jerome Flynn and Alfie Allen.

Edited by Lucius Lovejoy
Added Theon

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In the earlier seasons I'd often think when watching how great the acting is. Now I'd say it's mostly fine. Maybe it's the worse material, or maybe the fact that a lot of the great actors are literally no longer working on the show. 

Carice and Alife are great as always, but they've both had like barely 10 minutes of screentime, if that. Probably 5 for Mel. I'm surprised that I kind of like Euron's actor. Also, Dickon was pretty good. 

The two best acted scenes were probably Rigg's and Ellie Kendrick's last scenes. The worst is the sand snakes before Euron attacks. It doesn't help their lines were awful. Though Ellaria and Tyene were really good in their last scene, likely because they were gagged. 

Emilia I feel is a bit like Hayden Christensen in the SW prequels. Pretty good actually when it's just wordless acting, but very hit-or-miss, and depending on the material when saying lines. Dinklage and Kit are fine. Mostly everyone is pretty fine, basically.

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Posted (edited)

I think everyone does a great job, but will say that the actress playing Cersei has the most moments (usually very subtle expressions or movement timings, etc.) that make me think "what a great actress" - or, is it "actor"? Whatever. Not to take away from the other actors, I general have the same thoughts in many scenes with them, but Cersei has the most moments like that; to me, anyway.

Edited by John Meta

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Posted (edited)

They have killed off almost everyone, the more experienced actors.

Liam Cunningham, Peter Dinklage, Alfie Allen, Nicolaj Coster-Waldau and Lena Headey are solid. Lena the best this season.

I still don't like Kit Harington, Emilia Clarke, terrible actors that can't carry the show this late...

I have to add Maisie Williams but that is D&D's fault, she can act.

I don't know about Sophie Turner. Her voice makes me cringe at times. She sometimes sounds like a child trying to sound like a woman with authority like Cersei.

 

EDIT: obivously Iain and Rory are good as well.

Edited by ViserionRhaegalDrogon

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As others have mentioned, I've found this season to be pretty solid acting-wise, but without any outstanding performances. I thought they were going to try to finally get Lena an Emmy this year, but they've given her less to do this season than ever before. As for the other Lannisters, Nikolaj and Peter are finally getting some variety in their characters' scenes, and it's a pleasant reminder to see how good they are at portraying Jaime and Tyrion.

I think Kit, Maisie, and Sophie are all good actors, but not great ones. They're good enough to get the job done, but I'm rarely blown away by their performances.

I've never been impressed with Emilia's acting, although I will say that she's better in scenes where she shows her softer side. I've seen so many people praise Aiden over the years, but I think he plays Littlefinger as if he were a mustache-twirling villain straight out of a silent film. 

If I had to pick an underrated actor on this show, however, it would be Iain Glen. He's given a consistently good performance for seven years now, and rarely gets any recognition for it. 

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I think while Lena H has been outstanding in earlier seasons, this one not so much.  The story has given her crazy and power mad to act out and she is approaching Ramsey Bolton territory.  I wish her storyline was more nuanced to take advantage of her skills but so far - not.  

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Posted (edited)

16 hours ago, JordanJH1993 said:

I would disagree with the above comment that Emilia Clarke is the worst actress. If you see her interviewed, you would hardly believe she is the same person; she is giddy, smiley and very comical. To go completely against that and portray a character like Daenerys, who couldn't be less like Emillia Clarke as a person, is fairly impressive.

I totally agree and have always thought she's great in an extremely difficult role to play. This season I think she's been the standout performer.

Edited by cade
too negative

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Pretty much everyone is suffering from terrible writing, but oh well.

Headey and NCW have been the best ones this season, in my opinion. Apart from the dungeon scene, which just went over the top for my tastes acting-wise, Headey has been very good as a Queen - with boiling hatred behind a royal facade. NCW has really done well with the ruined Jaime that he has to play. The confusion and the pain is right there under the surface.

Glenn hasn't had much screen time. He is always very solid. Not much time for McCann either. He did do a very good job - as far as I could see from all the darkness - in the hut. Quite touching, actually.

Cunningham has been ok. He is terribly misused as a comic relief though. I hated the "staring at her heart" for example and I have no words for the "still rowing". None of that is his fault.

Dinklage has been awkward. It is probably because of writing and his diminished role and his character being out of his depth - the character not Dinklage - but I can't say I have enjoyed it much this season. For example the field of fire scene with Tyrion looking terrified and confused looking at the dying Lannister army, I thought he overdid it by a fair margin. Terrific actor usually, of course.

Turner and Williams are very young. I have been thinking that Turner is portraying Sansa very will this season, but she too has suffered from terrible writing especially at the great hall of Winterfell scenes. I thought she was superb on Arya-Sansa reunion and right after that with Bran in the scene as well.

I think Clarke has been a bit better this year, and having thought of it, I think she simply does better when her character is having problems rather than steamrolling along.

Nathalie Emmanuel is very beautiful. Her scene with Greyworm was gringeworthy, and I don't think it was all writing.

Harrington has been a bit weak, to be honest. It is his time to shine, but he comes off quite flat. He portrays Jon a bit too whiny for my tastes. Again - he gets a lot of time, but writing has been just bad. To be fair, I think his response to the terrible "staring at the heart" line was outstanding. Like a little boy that Jon is, in that sense, caught his hand deep in the cookie jar and called out for it :) . Perfect.

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On 19/08/2017 at 0:42 AM, Sand11751 said:

Emilia Clarke. I've been invested in all the characters for so long but this was the first season where I paid close attention to her. She has the most expressive face among the cast;

Um, interesting take. Most people's opinions seem to lean the other way, where Emilia has the *least* expressive face among main cast and is frequently criticised for her deadpan approach. I do think Emilia has been slightly more expressive this season, but not by much.

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I really like how Rory McCann portrays the Hound. He really adds significant depth to the character and his acting is always spot on.

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2 hours ago, Gaz0680 said:

Um, interesting take. Most people's opinions seem to lean the other way, where Emilia has the *least* expressive face among main cast and is frequently criticised for her deadpan approach. I do think Emilia has been slightly more expressive this season, but not by much.

That's why it's called an opinion. Everyone has one. Sometimes they differ as we clearly see on this board.

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Lena Headey for me is the best out of the main cast. NCW has had a lot more variety to work with this season too which probably explains why I'm enjoying the Lannister plot aspects the most.

Iain Glenn, Carice, Liam C, Rory etc are all top quality and their acting is always superb but unfortunately they just don't have enough to do this season.

Sophie and Maisie are doing ok, with a few dodgy scenes here and there. 

For me, the weakest has to be Kit with Emilia just a margin better. I find they've both regressed over the years. Playing Jon and Dany when they were younger and less 'authoritative' was good for them (emilia did whiney, entitled Dany 'where are my Dragons' well) but now that the characters are supposed to demand respect and authority I find the acting cringeworthy.

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Lena Headey and NCW have been pretty good.  Actually Jaime and Cersei have been the only interesting characters this season.

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