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The Woman Who Would be Queen: 'Game of Thrones' 3.4 Recap and Review

Thompson on Hollywood By David Chute | Thompson on Hollywood April 22, 2013 at 1:14AM

Emilia Clarke is still on fire in Season Three of HBO's "Games of Thrones." We're feeling a little prescient this week after noting, last week, how commanding Clarke has been in the sequences set in the Slaver's Bay city of Astapor, where her character, Daenerys Targaryen, is negotiating with the vile and condescending slave breeder Kraznys mo Nakloz (Dan Hildebrand) for an army of The Unsullied, identical-looking eunuch warriors.
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Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) and Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen) in 'Game of Thrones'
Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) and Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen) in 'Game of Thrones'

Daenerys would be hard character for anyone to play, much less a 25-year-old with only a couple of other credits on her resume, one of them a Broadway show that is about to close. Perhaps this is simply a near-perfect match between a performer and the one quality that must be conveyed for this storyline to work. But it's a tough one, and she's doing a great job.

Dany is utterly single-minded, and how to play that without turning people off? Her only goal in life is to take back the notably ugly throne she regards as a family heirloom. The one thing we need to believe above all, in order to become invested in that quest, to not regard it as delusional or psychopathic, is that she really could be a queen -- even more, that she deserves to be one. Quite a feat for one so young.

This article is related to: TV, Television, TV Reviews


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.