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During the past six seasons of Game of Thrones, Arya Stark has changed quite a lot. She’s gone from a child to a young woman. She’s changed costumes and countries. She’s gone from seeing to blind to seeing again. Through all of these changes, her mental state has also changed as she has suffered, leading her to be able to embrace violence that most people would shy from. Recently, Maisie Williams, who plays Arya on HBO’s Game of Thrones, revealed exactly why her character is so messed up mentally and emotionally. Here’s what she had to say:
She's gone through too much, and has experienced so much pain and heartache and violence, and hasn't really had a hug in a long time. When was the last time she was touched by someone and cared for?
That’s a valid point. Although early on in Game of Thrones Arya seemed to have a pretty happy childhood, it wasn’t to last. She witnessed Joffrey deciding to behead her father Ned Stark, and then escaped from King’s Landing afterward. She ended up traveling across the countryside, getting captured and finding herself in tenuous situations before the Hound found her. Their relationship was more then a bit dysfunctional, as the Hound was technically her captor. He planned to turn her in to her family and reap the rewards; unfortunately, they were all killed at the Red Wedding just before she got there. Eventually, the Hound was seemingly injured and died and she headed to Braavos where she began training at the House of Black and White, but she still sought vengeance against those who had wronged her. Really, her entire life through most of the six seasons of Game of Thrones has been quite fucked up.
As Maisie Williams also noted to THR, Arya does have people in her life. She had a relationship with Syrio, her sword instructor who was reportedly killed. She had a relationship with The Hound, but it was based on survival and a mutual dislike for certain humans. She currently has relationships with those training her in the House of Black and White, but there is no room for warmth or affection there. Here's what she had to say about her companions on the show:
They haven't cared for her. She's had companions, but it's not the sort of support a child needs. For me, justifying these decisions, I've had to take that into account. She doesn't feel like a normal girl. She's been very alone.
That doesn't seem to be ending for the character anytime soon. Still, it's nice to know that Maisie Williams is so in tune with her character and ready to face the challenges that come with essentially playing a sociopath. It's a hard life for a girl. It's a hard life for No One.
Game of Thrones airs Sunday nights at 9 p.m. ET, only on HBO. For a quick recap of what's going on and what is to come, check out what we know.