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Miltos Yerolemou (Syrio Forel) says Game of Thrones season 1 received mediocre reviews in England




Game of Thrones had some of the most incredible and shocking episodes, but the Red Wedding stands tall in a category of its own. Often described as one of the most traumatic episodes of the show, it changed the way the world viewed Game of Thrones as a show, it was something that a lot of people unfamiliar with the books could’ve never expected, it struck them out of nowhere. Miltos Yerolemou, who played Arya Stark’s water dancing teacher Syrio Forel, followed the series closely till the end even after his on-screen demise, and he explained how the horrific scene changed the course of the show.

In a recent live Instagram AMA session with Game of Laughs, Miltos explained how the show slowly became a household name, “It’s hard to imagine this now because of what we know Game of Thrones to be. This became a show beyond that was successful, it became a cultural phenomenon. It was loved in places around the world where you usually don’t get a uniform kind of response. You know, South America, any place in the world that you can imagine, fell in love with the show. It’s the reason why the ending was so controversial because when you have that many people invested emotionally, invested in characters and story, it’s gonna cause a tsunami, of course, it is.”

Most of the time you’re dealing with a few million here a few million there, but here you’re talking about billions of people who were invested in the show. So, the show answered that we didn’t, we had no idea, we wanted it to be a success, wanted it to talk the story the way we wanted. We wanted to do justice to the source material. That’s all we ever wanted to do, create something that is not instantly forgettable. But we never realized that we would create something like that.”

“Remember, it was a slow burner, I remember the reviews in England, when the first season came out. They weren’t that good. They were quite mediocre. A lot of them said they were a bunch of RAC actors. I remember because I read those. So it was a slow burn. And it was only by the time we got to season 3 that everything started kicking off. Once people watched the Red Wedding, they were like, oh my god. We have no idea what is going on in this show. From that moment on, that’s when I had felt it changed, it really changed then. Everyone started writing about it. It became bigger than just a TV show. People were quoting it on the internet, politics, politicians were quoting it. It was a slow burner but yeah, by the point of season 3, the whole world was on board.”

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He also talked about how he never expected “not today” becoming a pop culture phrase, “I never expected the phrase to become a part of pop culture. We never do, you know. We just say the lines and make a good scene, but I never thought that. Let’s put it this way, on my grave stone, on my own grave stone, I’ve already decided that I’m going to have not today with not crossed out on it. I’m fully on board. It’s quite remarkable. I’ve had very powerful experiences. I feel really humbled and I feel great pride in having played a character people have loved so much. I never take it for granted. Especially when I meet people, sometimes who are facing real difficulties in their lives, people facing death themselves, they tell me that those lines have given them great comfort. It’s overwhelming sometimes, I’m always humbled by that.”

“I get a lot of requests from fans to write “Not Today” on their bodies. And then they get turned into a tattoo. I think that’s the weirdest thing I’ve been asked to do.”

When do you think Game of Thrones began to ride the winds of success? Talk to us in comments below!

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Sayantan is a keen follower of everything pop culture; from films, shows, anime to video games and latest memes. He started writing professionally for Wiki of Thrones during the 2021 lockdown, and has been developing his writing and editing skills ever since. With a growing repertoire amassing renowned websites, Sayantan is your go to guy for all things Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon.

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