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Maisie Williams Talks Arya Stark’s Character Development In Game of Thrones Season Four (No Spoilers)

“I don’t want people to like her anymore, almost,” quoth Maisie Williams, one of the people I enjoy most on television. “I want people to realize that actually she’s not the same anymore. You can’t root for her forever, because she’s not there to be your favorite character.”

But she is, Maisie Williams. She is.

In a recent interview with Zap2it, Williams discussed how the events of season three have impacted her character, as well as her own feelings toward playing her. As the last episode suggested, our lost wolf is headed into dark territory.

She gets herself into a lot of sticky situations, but they’re really good situations for her. Old Arya would be nervous about it and wouldn’t push things as far as new Arya pushes them. She doesn’t keep her mouth shut. She says a lot of things that old Arya wouldn’t. You thought Arya was kind of outgoing and blunt, but the new Arya is just a lot less aware of that, almost, and isn’t trying to be cheeky; [she] just purely doesn’t care.

Williams emphasized that Arya’s morality is becoming a solid shade of grey, and that she doesn’t want audiences to be on Arya’s side just because they got attached to her plucky former self.

People go down bad paths and they make bad decisions, but it’s always justified in their head. I want the audience to differentiate that and not just be like, ‘Oh, it’s Arya, we love her.’ Because actually look at what Arya’s doing. She’s being eaten away from the inside out, and she’s not stopping it.

Funnily enough, this is exactly why I love Arya Stark. Not because she can use a sword, not because I’m comfy with all her decisions, but because she’s evolved into such a complicated, compelling mess. It’s the same reason why I love watching Cersei, too. The difference being that I want Arya to have something go right, and I want Cersei to fall into a nest of vipers. I haven’t read the books. Don’t tell me.

Full interview this way.

Previously in Game of Thrones

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