OK, I admit it has only been one episode of GAME OF THRONES and probably only a combined 5-6 minutes of air time for the new guy playing Daario Naharis but even that small sample size was more than enough for me to decide that I don’t like this re-cast at all.
Despite looking nothing like the character is described in the books, the original Daario (Ed Skrein) had a certain off kilter machismo aura about him that worked really well at conveying the type of character Dario should be. He also had a brashly unseemly chemistry with Emilia Clarke’s Daenerys from pretty much their first scene. The new Daario (Michiel Huisman), aside from looking like he just strolled off the set of GIRLS with his ironic beard and shaggy haircut, is the antithesis of edgy and has about as much chemistry with Dany as Grey Worm. I don’t know why the casting folks at GoT picked this guy but they could have made their decision much easier and spared me the aggravation just by looking in the direction of the STARZ! channel’s sword-and-sandals epic SPARTACUS for their new Daario.
For those of you who were not fans of SPARTACUS let me introduce you to Dustin Clare. He is an Australian actor, he’s 32 and he played the role of the gladiator Gannicus on SPARTACUS. Gannicus was considered the “God of the Arena” by most because of his winning record in the gladiatorial arena. Aside from being a fierce warrior, Gannicus was also a major chick magnet and he knew it. He was a brash, egotistical, selfish bastard…does that sound like anyone else we know?
As he proved in the role of Gannicus, Clare is a very charismatic actor who was able to convincingly portray an edgy anti-hero who could be charming and romantic in one moment and quickly change to become a deadly killer in the next but all with a twinkle in his eye. Tell me that Clare’s time as Gannicus wasn’t an audition for this role and would not have been totally a better fit than the woefully miscast Huisman. The role of Daario Naharis needs a a guy who can play a dashing warrior not some emo hipster.The final bit of evidence I present are these profile videos that pretty much shows the progression of the character of Gannicus and shows that Clare would have kicked major butt in the role of Daario: