Kit Harington believes the ending to 'Game of Thrones' represents what the show was "really about".
The ending to the HBO fantasy drama - which concluded its eighth and final season earlier this year - saw Jon Snow kill his Aunt and lover Daenerys Targaryen after she destroyed King's Landing with her dragon, and was met with a mixed reaction from fans.
But Kit, who starred as Jon, believes the ending was exactly what the show was all about, because it showed the "dysfunctional family" dynamic between Jon and Daenerys.
He said: "It was said a long time ago, and I agree with it, that 'Thrones' really is about dysfunctional families. It's about mothers, brothers and sisters, but it's also about how far your blood will stretch in your decision-making. That's the ultimate choice Jon is left with. He's faced with someone he loves as his lover - who he is related to - but his loyalty is with the people and the part of the world where his roots are, the people who raised him.
"It's that horrible conflict in a relationship: 'Do I stay or do I go?' We've all been through it at some point ... except this one involves a knife."
Kit says he and Emilia Clarke - who played Daenerys - spent three weeks filming the Mother of Dragons' final scenes, and admits the "emotional" turmoil the pair went through whilst filming was "tiring".
He explained: "We felt a sense of responsibility over it. We shot the hell out of it. It was essentially a page and a half of dialogue, and we spent three weeks filming it. They wanted to shoot every conceivable angle, every way, to make sure they got it the way they wanted it.
"When you're shooting the same scene for two weeks and it's a page and a half, it becomes a long exercise in concentration. You have to remember the energy you're bringing in, every day, and making sure it's consistent. With a highly emotionally charged scene like that, it's quite a lot, for everyone - the crew, me, and Emilia. It was tiring. It's one of the hardest things we filmed."
And although Kit thinks the ending was justified, he does admit he was "completely surprised" when he read the script.
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, he said: "I was completely surprised by it even though you can kind of see the path through the season of how it was getting there - and even the previous couple of seasons before that, once you can look back. But it was still a big shock to me."