Kit Harington Reflects on Jon Snow's Experience of First Love



HBO: Jon encounters Ygritte again in the season finale. Did he know she'd shoot?

KIT HARINGTON: I genuinely don't think he knows—that's what makes it a great scene. He appeals to her and says, "Look I have to do this, I have to. I love you and I know you're not going to hurt me." When he turns around, I don't think he knows what's going to happen so when that first arrow hits, it's a real shock. And he realizes he's in danger; she is his enemy now and he has to get out of there.

HBO: We know she's a dead shot—did she miss on purpose?

KIT HARINGTON: I don't know, but she's in a heightened state of emotion. It gets very confusing, any decisions you make in that state. She may not have gone for the major bodily organs, but she wants him to know she's upset, that's for sure.

HBO: Where does Jon draw the line? He killed Qhorin Halfhand, but hesitated when it came to killing the horse breeder.

KIT HARINGTON: I think he couldn't bring himself to kill an innocent man. With Qhorin, Jon was genuinely fighting for his life. He had to kill him because that was the plan all along, the plan that Qhorin set out. This was just an innocent man who's done nothing and that goes against everything Jon stands for. But he knows he can't do it; Ygritte knows he won't do it - and he doesn't.

HBO: By making it back to Castle Black, Jon fulfills his mission from Qhorin Halfhand. Was it worth the price?

KIT HARINGTON: I think it takes a huge toll on who he is. It's a hell of a way to lose your first love. I don't think he really knows, he just has to make decisions and he has to stick with his instinct. On a different day, his instinct could have told him to stay with Ygritte. But Jon has known all along he has to get back and defend the Wall. This whole trip has been a crazy journey for him but he has to stick to his morals.

HBO: For Robb, it's all about living up to Ned's legacy and standards. Does that same compass direct Jon?

KIT HARINGTON: Absolutely. Jon and Robb have held that man in such high esteem, that almost instinctually, honor is built in to them. It's very hard when your outlook on life changes, when you've been with a different viewpoint as it were, but he has to stick to what he originally planned. He's honorable Jon and he's got to do what he says he'll do.

HBO: This season Jon experienced some major milestones: he lost his virginity, lost his girl. What was it like shooting those scenes?

KIT HARINGTON: The one that was painful to do in a lot ways was the goodbye to Ygritte, that whole section in Episode 310. You know who your character is and what they're doing, but every now and again, you get lost in it because the writing is so good or you've got something invested in the world yourself. I found it was quite emotional saying goodbye to Ygritte. Rose [Leslie] and I had a great time filming the scenes of the characters getting to know each other.

HBO: Jon had to make a lot of sacrifices, but by the end of Season 3, he's still much better off than Robb and Theon.

KIT HARINGTON: They're all pretty horrible predicaments, but the good thing about Jon's is that he's going home. Castle Black is his home now and he's made it back to Sam and all those people of the Watch he holds dear. But he's in a bad place. We all know what it's like to lose our first love. And to lose her in that fashion is pretty hard on him.

HBO: Does Jon have any concerns about re-entering the Watch after his time with the wildlings?

KIT HARINGTON: He's just surviving at the moment, taking one thing at the time. If he wakes up alive, he's relieved.


HBO: Which character do you admire the most?

KIT HARINGTON: I have huge admiration for Jaime Lannister. Tyrion too. What's interesting with Jaime is that you can put it behind you that he threw Bran off the tower, because of what Jaime stands up to and has done this season.

HBO: Which character or being scares you the most?

KIT HARINGTON: The White Walkers. Genuinely. I think they're the most terrifying element of the whole stories.

HBO: Do you have a favorite prop?

KIT HARINGTON: I've called dibs on Long Claw, but I don't know if they'll give it to me. It's one of the first things I held when I got the part, so I've got an attachment to it.

HBO: Given the story's distinct locations, in what region would you most want to live?

KIT HARINGTON: I like Winterfell. It's where we started the story, when everything was happy and good.

HBO: If you could warg, what animal would you be?

KIT HARINGTON: I'd be something that flies. An eagle, ironically, even if that's what Orell is.

HBO: Is there a phrase you'd like to learn in Valyrian?

KIT HARINGTON: I am very happy I don't have to speak it.