Game of Thrones fan excitement continued post-panel on Saturday, thanks to the memorable contributions by Maisie WIlliams and Gwendoline Christie at two additional discussions.
Williams participated in TV Guide's Fan Favorites panel, where she delighted the audience with tales as to why you shouldn't mess with her on Twitter, how she'll learn to fight blind in Season 6, and the names on her personal kill list.
Moderator Damian Holbrook told the audience that if they're not following Williams on Twitter, they're missing out. Case in point, a recent exchange in which a fan asked Williams for a quote for their high school yearbook. Williams responded with words everyone will remember: "Anyone can be killed." WIlliams recalled with a laugh, "People shouldn't trust me with Twitter."
As for what's in store for Arya, Williams said she'll have to spend a lot more time training since she'll be fighting blind in the coming season.
"I would love to see her be just as strong fighting blind but I do think it will take a bit of time to get there," she said. "Also for me personally, it's going to be difficult fighting with the contacts I was wearing because they're totally opaque. I can't see a thing but I know they're hoping to use them rather than CG. On one hand it's quite good because I am actually blind and I don't know what's going on. But on the other hand, doing stunts you do get injured so not being able to see while doing that is going to be hell. But I hope you guys enjoy it!"
When a fan asked Williams about her kill list, she had an answer that brought the house down:
"At school I really enjoyed maths; it's something I enjoyed in primary school when I was 12. It was my leading subject and then when I went into secondary school, I started to hate maths because of my teachers," she explained. "I feel like that's how it is for a lot of people: When you don't like your teachers, you start to hate the subject... So I'd kill all three of my math teachers."
Meanwhile, Christie wowed the crowd gathered for Entertainment Weekly's Women Who Kick Ass panel, by speaking from her heart and sharing gory details from her epic fight with Rory McCann in Season 4.
Speaking to how and where Christie would like to see Brienne's story end, she's hoping for redemption in some form. "I think where we‘ve seen Brienne up to this point, we’ve loved her because she’s so dedicated to an overriding sense of moral good," said Christie. Referring to "that terribly disappointing incident" regarding Sansa and the candle, Christie mused, "Although Brienne of Tarth is a character in a show, it made us see her humanity and how we all fail. Even the strongest, badass women fail. As long as you try to redeem yourself again, keep going and achieve your goals in pursuit of the greater good, that’s all you can do."
When the women on the panel (Christie, Hayley Atwell, Gal Godot and Kathy Bates) were asked by moderator Sara Vilkomerson to address challenges they've faced that their male counterparts have not, Christie was the sole responder to speak from her heart about the state of women in Hollywood:
"I have to say I found it incredibly difficult. I found that initially when I left drama school, the world 10 years ago was a less embracing place than it is now because the Internet wasn’t so available to everybody," Christie explained. "The Internet seems to have made people’s frame of reference so much more diverse and as a consequence, what we’re seeing are characters like the ones all these women play being embraced because women want to see themselves more represented in a more realistic way. And not just women -- men, everybody wants to see something. We’re all so unique that that’s what we want to see. We want to see people we can relate to, or people that are so vastly different from us so that somehow, through the journey of storytelling, we find out we’re not so different after all. I do feel that’s starting to happen and I’m very grateful for that."
Bates, in the midst of raucous audience applause, added: "Bravo."
Although Christie could've remained silent for the rest of the panel after those moving words, her second "mic drop" moment came when, after being asked about her most memorable stunt work, she re-told the story of how she and co-star Rory McCann trained and filmed the epic fight between Brienne and the Hound in Season 4.
"We spent two months of training for it, two or three days a week for six to eight hours a day, just to build up the strength necessary to fight Rory McCann, who’s a 6’7” man and certainly a lot stronger than I am," recalled Christie. "But the characters are of the same level of strength so I had to do quite a lot of pretending to try and carry that one off. But more than that, exactly as [Hayley Atwell said], you learn the fight as a dance and it’s actually the story you’re telling that infuses it with something else.”
Christie described learning the fight on a level floor in Belfast, only to discover that the set up was completely different in Iceland, where she had to fight going backwards up a hill. "It was also freak weather conditions in Iceland, it was boiling hot. I had the real armor on, the face was casserole-ing in the sun," she said. "And if you’re familiar with the fight, there was one moment where Brienne punches the Hound somewhere extremely intimate. We’d rehearsed it so we knew where that punch went so it was faked and no one got hurt. Then just before the take, Rory McCann said [mimicing his Scottish accent]: 'Do it for real.' I said, 'I’m sorry?' He said, 'Do it for real.' And what you see in that fight is a genuine connection of fist and undercarriage."