The epic recent episode of Game of Thrones gave us everything we had been waiting for for seven seasons: Dragons v. wights, Dany saving the day, and an epic battle beyond the wall where we witnessed the true power of the Night King (RIP Viserion).
What's more, it turns out that the howling snowstorms, icy conditions, and bitter cold which eventually claimed poor Thoros of Myr were just as brutal in real life, leaving poor #RoryMcCann, a.k.a. Sandor "#TheHound" Clegane, with some pretty hardcore injuries during filming. Speaking earlier this month to the Sydney Morning Herald, McCann — who was pressing an icepack to his "tree-trunk legs" — let slip some information about the strains of filming that epic episode:
"OK, it was from the show. I can't tell you exactly how but I had this guy on my shoulder for days and days — it didn't work with a dummy so I had to carry a real guy and we had to run and run […] No wonder I'm f---ed."
Now that Episode 6 has aired, we know the "man" in question he was talking about. The Hound spends much of the episode lugging around the captured wight, which the gang plan to take back to #Cersei to prove to her the ever-looming threat beyond the wall.
McCann also talked about the brutal conditions and toll Season 7 has taken on all of the cast so far, especially in Episode 6 which was entirely spent in an icy quarry in Belfast:
"We filmed by this quarry in Belfast about 1000 feet up. We had hard weather there and then in between scenes we'd be going back to our trailers and everyone was covered in shit. Some days were actually brutal."
If that wasn't enough, and if carrying a man on your back for days and days wasn't enough of a struggle, the set designers needed to create a real winter storm using paper:
"The mad thing was in Belfast there weren't real blizzards going on, so they had these massive fans, like the ones on those airboats in swamps. We'd have at least two of them going with guys throwing paper snow in front of it and you couldn't hear what the next actor was saying. Everyone was just lip reading and eating paper."
McCann also confessed that his Episode 6 injury was only stressed further by working on his houseboat, where he lives on his own off the west coast of Scotland. Like the Hound himself, McCan is a solitary, stoic individual who doesn't smoke, drink, or socialize that much with the cast. He also doesn't watch himself on the show. His interview with the Sydney Morning Herald was a rare peek into the life of this reclusive actor, but his bone-dry wit and ability to survive has made him a fan-favorite ever since Season 1.
With the season finale on the way next weekend, we will see how it all plays out with Cersei in the Dragonpit, and whether the south will take up arms against the army of the dead, or let the ice dragon decimate them all.
What did you think of Season 7, Episode 6 "Beyond the Wall?" Let us know in the comments!