Warning: This article contains spoilers for Sunday night's episode of Game of Thrones.
On Sunday night's episode of Game of Thrones, we said goodbye to Hodor—and also learned why he only says "Hodor." (You can read our full recap—and explanation—right here.) The short version: Bran's mind is in the midst of a time-traveling vision where he observes his father and young Hodor (real name: Wylis), but back in the present-day, he must warg into prsent-day Hodor to save himself, Meera and Hodor from the White Walkers. Still trapped in the vision, he accidentally wargs into young Hodor as they're escaping the Cave. Meera shouts to present-day Hodor to "Hold the door!" from the wights, and in the vision, Wylis collapses to the ground, shouting "Hold the door" which turns into "Hodor."
In a video for HBO, the actors who play Bran and Hodor weigh in on the loss of one of the only truly good characters on the show. "When I got the script for season six, although I had the call, I knew what was going to happen to Hodor. It was a really difficult scene to read, because he's a lovable character," Kristian Nairn, who plays Hodor, said. "I love Hodor, I love him to death. I had sort of illusions that Hodor was going to be some sort of king, but I like that he sacrificed himself for his friends. It feels very true to Hodor to me. I'm just flattered I got so far, with so many people dying every year, I think I did quite well to get to season six."
"He's one of the only characters on Game of Thrones who genuinely doesn't have an agenda of any kind, at all. He's just Hodor," Isaac Hempstead-Wright, who plays Bran, said. "So to have him then killed is the ultimate twisting of the knife. It really is these good, kind characters who deserve nothing like that, and who have been through a horrible time themselves. Because Hodor was just, as we know, a totally normal kid who was then sort of screwed over by Bran."
Hempstead-Wright echoed that sentiment with a short, sad tweet:
And costar Daniel Portman, who plays Podrick Payne, shouted out the most emotional moment of all: that Hodor's name comes from "Hold the Door," the command he is given right before his death.
Nairn also spoke to Entertainment Weekly, and he left a little bit of doubt about whether Hodor actually died. "The interesting thing is it's kinda left open. You don't actually see him [die]. It's implied," he said. "So who knows? He may come back as a White Walker, maybe he got away." Here's hoping this isn't the last we see of the lovable Hodor.
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