Did Game of Thrones do Varys dirty for the better part of the past couple of seasons? We don’t think that this is necessarily an unfair question to think about — David Benioff and D.B. Weiss may have focused too much elsewhere, or, beyond that, his character may have been a consequence of shorter final seasons. With the focus narrowing so much, we have lost a little bit of the beauty of this show — being able to check in with a number of players and, at times, a number of places. While we don’t necessarily miss places like Dorne or Meereen, we certainly do miss a little bit of the sprawling geography that was once Westeros.
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Conleth Hill played the character of Varys brilliantly through the series’ entire run, and he’s the first to admit that he had a hard time both with the nature of his character’s death (though it makes sense to him in terms of the story’s logic) and also the relative lack of major airtime for the final two seasons of his run. Here’s what he had to say about his death (which he found out about via reading the script) in a new interview with Entertainment Weekly:
“You can’t help feeling that you failed in some way, that you haven’t lived up to some expectation that you didn’t know about … At the time, nothing could console me.”
Meanwhile, Hill got a bit more candid as to why he didn’t enjoy the final seasons as much, largely because he had a little less to do as a character:
“That’s been my feeling the last couple seasons, that my character became more peripheral, that they concentrated on others more … That’s fine. It’s the nature of a multi-character show. It was kind of frustrating. As a whole, it’s been overwhelmingly positive and brilliant, but I suppose the last couple seasons weren’t my favorite.”
Hill especially laments the lack of a scene where Varys learns about the death of Littlefinger, given that the two were such rivals and opposite sides of the same coin. Both of them were masters of pulling strings in Westeros and with them dead, you can argue that Tyrion Lannister and Sansa Stark are the only two characters left who really understand the ins and outs of this world … but they don’t have the same cover that Littlefinger and Varys did. Because they didn’t have some sort of established family name, there was a little more of an element of mystery with them. That’s a part of the equation that isn’t 100% present here now.
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What do you think the legacy of Varys on Game of Thrones is, and do you wish that this character had more to do through the end of the series? Be sure to share right now in the comments. (Photo: HBO.)