Over the last six seasons, fans of Game of Thrones have watched the Stark children grow up sooner than any child should have to. Yet, even with a decent amount of young actors on the not kid-friendly HBO show, seeing photos of the Game of Thrones cast as kids is pretty much always a delightful experience. Whether you've watched these actors grow up on screen or they were adults when the show started, young photos of Game of Thrones stars prove that there was life before Thrones and that it was good.
Some of the Game of Thrones cast is active on social media and that means they typically embrace time-honored traditions like Throwback Thursday. While it's mostly the millennial-aged cast members who really embrace outlets like Instagram and Twitter, social media prowess doesn't belong exclusively to them — and there are even some younger cast members who are notably missing from social media. (I'm looking at you, Kit Harington.)
For the actors who don't openly share their youthful photos, their fame and long careers have made it fairly easy to find them in younger acting roles. And if you really have a craving to see the Game of Thrones actors as kids, you can always return to how the Stark children looked back in Season 1 on and off the show. After all, the actors seem cool with it since Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner appear to fully embrace how they looked way back then.
So, as you prepare for the death and destruction that will inevitably take place in Season 7, take a journey back to a simpler time when the cast members of Game of Thrones were fresh-faced young'uns.
Lena Headey is a delight to follow on social media, but she hasn't shared any old photos of herself. That's OK though since the 43-year-old Cersei Lannister actress has been working for 25 years, which means she wasn't even 20 when she filmed her first film, Waterland.
On the other hand (oops, sorry, Jaime), Jaime Lannister actor was already in his 20s when he was in the Danish thriller Nightwatch (Nattevagten) in 1994. However, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau still looks like a baby in his second-ever IMDd-listed project — especially compared to the hardened Kingslayer.
The Mother of Dragons is active on Instagram, which makes finding rare photos of her a piece of cake. The Daenerys Targaryen actress shared this adorable photo of her and her older brother to celebrate his birthday. Please note that the always stylish Emilia Clarke is wearing underwear on her head to complete the ensemble.
You can scour the internet to find even younger photos of Jon Snow actor Kit Harington courtesy of fan pages, but I'm partial to teenage shots of Harington since he kind of resembles one of my old boyfriends. #Blessed
As she explained on The Late Late Show with James Corden, Maisie Williams' baby picture proves that Arya Stark has always been bad to the bone. For more precious young photos of Williams, follow her on Instagram since her youth wasn't always this intense looking.
It's hard to believe there was a time when Khal Drogo wasn't incredibly ripped. Yet, the magic of the internet has provided proof that Jason Momoa was once just a kid in a collared, striped shirt tucked into his jeans. (I also highly recommend doing a Google Image search of "Jason Momoa young Baywatch.")
Seeing this joyful photo that Sophie Turner posted on Instagram of her and her friend makes me want to warn the Sansa Stark actress of the horrible things that are to come. Don't go to King's Landing, Sansa!
With a producer for a mother, an actor for a father, and a singer for a sister, Alfie Allen comes from a famous family. But this #tbt photo he posted on Instagram proves that kid awkwardness doesn't skip anyone — even if your parents are famous.
Daenerys' translator Missandei looks remarkably like her real-life mom as Nathalie Emmanuel's Instagram photo shows — and they're both gorgeous.
Grey Worm's childhood might not have been the best, being a part of the Unsullied and all, but the actor who plays him has shared photos of his own childhood on Instagram and Jacob Anderson not only seemed to be having fun as a kid, but he had some great hair.
11Carice van Houten
Going through my dad's suitcase.. pic.twitter.com/WA84ZtTmhd— Carice van Houten (@caricevhouten) July 1, 2016
According to this photo that Carice van Houten shared on her social media, the ancient Red Priestess Melisandre was once young and innocent. That face certainly doesn't seem like it's capable of killing Shireen.
As the youngest child of Cersei and Jaime Lannister, you probably didn't even consider what Tommen Baratheon actor Dean-Charles Chapman looked like before he appeared on the show. Yet, he shares plenty of throwback pictures of his wee self, like this charming one that breaks your heart when you think about Tommen's fate.
Thanks to the world of reddit (and specifically, user cameroncrazy85), Peter Dinklage's senior yearbook photo hit the internet back in June 2014. If anyone can pull off a mullet, it's Tyrion Lannister.
Whenever watching Game of Thrones becomes too much for you, know that you have these images to look back upon to remind you that these actors were just fine before they landed on the gruesome HBO show.