Warning: Spoilers ahead for the “Game of Thrones” episode “Book of the Stranger.”
They don’t call her “The Unburnt” for nothing. We’ve already seen Emilia Clarke’s Daenerys Targaryen escape fire with nary a mark on her in a previous episode of “Game of Thrones,” but on last night’s episode “Book of the Stranger,” Dany did it yet again, not only proving that the Targaryen heir has a special kind of magic all her own, but that Clarke herself isn’t afraid to strip down with the moment is right. Daenerys didn’t just light up the Great Khals at the sacred city of Vaes Dothrak, gaining a new army of loyal subjects in the process, she also did it while, well, very naked.
Clarke (along with show runners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss) sat down with Entertainment Weekly to explain why she loved that scene so much – “It’s so exciting, very tingly-making. Every season I get at least one spine-chilling moment” – but why the nudity in the scene itself was so very important to her (and, by extension, to Dany).
For Clarke, the scene was just another banner moment for Dany, one that not only provided a show-stopper and jaw-dropper of a scene, but one that reminded the Breaker of Chains what she’s capable of. “I just stand up and I go, ‘I’m hearing what you’re all saying, but funny thing, I’m going to kill you all. I forgot that I have an ace in my back pocket and now I win,'” she said.
And what she wins is a massive new army of loyal (and, frankly, kind of stunned) followers. “She realizes that this is the missing piece,” Clarke told EW. “The Dothraki are the missing piece of her crew – she’s seemingly indestructible having Dothraki on her side.”
While Daenerys is no doubt very empowered by her new followers and the revelation of just how strong her powers actually are, the scene also bolstered Clarke’s confidence. “I’d like to remind people the last time I took my clothes off was season 3,” she told EW. “That was awhile ago. It’s now season 6. But this is all me, all proud, all strong. I’m just feeling genuinely happy I said ‘Yes.’ That ain’t no body double!”
She continued, “Taking off my clothes is not the easiest thing, but with the magic of the effects, I don’t have to do a season 1 and go on a cliff and do it. I’m in control of it.”
“Game of Thrones” airs Sundays on HBO.