The character of ‘Ray‘ in Game of Thrones episode 7, ‘The Broken Man‘, came and went soon enough, reminding us fans that getting emotionally attached to any character on Game of Thrones will most definitely result in said character’s death. We saw, in this episode, how Ray played a vital role in reviving Sandor Clegane, and introducing the latter to a new life. Ray proved to be especially helpful in re-introducing us to an admired character, since most of the fans believed that The Hound was dead. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Ian McShane, the actor who plays Ray, talks about his experience on Game of Thrones, and how working with Rory McCann (The Hound) was quite an enjoyable time.
McShane talks about how the director wanted him to play the role of Ray, since they had prepared a two-page speech that proved to be a very important aspect of the episode. Since all of Ray’s scenes involved Clegane, McShane reveals that he only got to interact much with Rory McCann, and that it certainly was fun to film those scenes with him.
When asked about how he got involved with Game of Thrones as a character, he says, “Well, they wrote a two-page speech – so that’s why they invited me. It’s a big soliloquy, like in Deadwood, and they needed to get somebody who could do that. It was really well written. Rory was a delight to work with, and so was the director. The whole experience was five days in Belfast, and I enjoyed it a lot.”
In answer to the question of what he thinks will happen with the Hound in the next episode, and about his death scene, McShane says, “I don’t know what happens in the next episodes. But if they’re following the Western code, he’ll seek to avenge me, then continue his life in a different way. You have to have revenge, and expedient revenge. I don’t believe in the death penalty, but I understand personal vengeance. How do you reconcile those in real life? In film, you can do it very easily. You show somebody has been wronged and therefore their morality is in the right place. It’s very easy.” “You just have to hold your breath for 10 seconds and look sufficiently dead for them to get it.”
Talking about if there was any pressure being a part of the most popular TV show in the world, he said, “No pressure! It’s the most popular TV show in the world, isn’t it? I enjoyed meeting [showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss] – nobody ever expects the kind of reaction this has gotten. It’s kind of like Deadwood when we started off, but they’ve managed to go another three seasons. It’s interesting because you’re a part of the show, but you’re not part of the show. I only needed Rory [for my scenes], so I didn’t meet anybody else in it.”
When asked if he was being hounded by people when it became known that he was to star in Game of Thrones, he replied, “That’s the natural extension of the Internet. I don’t pay much attention to that. I don’t do social media. So I’m constantly surprised that when anybody says anything”
We surely did enjoy McShane’s presence in Game of Thrones, and though his role might not have been long enough, he certainly will be a character to remember since he brought back none other than Sandor Clegane!