“Game of Thrones” season 4 is about to get a lot more interesting with the casting of Chilean actor Pedro Pascal, who recently came aboard the HBO show to play the fan favorite Oberyn Martell, better known as the Red Viper.
“This was a tough one,” showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss told Entertainment Weekly. “The Red Viper is sexy and charming, yet believably dangerous; intensely likable, yet driven by hate. The boys love him, the girls love him, and he loves them all back. Unless your last name is Lannister. We found a fellow who can handle the job description and make it seem effortless. He wasn’t easy to find and he won’t be easy to stop.”
If you’re curious about the much-loved character but don’t want to risk spoilers by looking him up elsewhere online, here’s a brief overview of the character’s background:
Oberyn is a prince of Dorne, the southernmost kingdom in Westeros. During King Robert’s rebellion, his sister Elia was horrifically murdered by Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane (brother to Sandor “The Hound” Clegane) soon after Ned Stark helped Robert take the throne. In season four, the Red Viper will travel north to Kings Landing to seek revenge for his sister.
Fans of George R.R. Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire” have every reason to be excited about the addition of the Red Viper to the show. Martell first appeared in the series’ third book, “A Storm of Swords,” on which the third season of “Game of Thrones” was loosely based. In the book, the Red Viper delivered one of the most memorably awesome scenes in the entire book series, and fans of the novels have been waiting for his appearance on the show ever since. Because the book was so long, however, much of the material at the end of “A Storm of Swords” (including the Red Viper’s introduction) has been shifted to “Game of Thrones” season 4. Now, the Red Viper is about to become a favorite character for fans of the HBO drama as well.